Basket of Figs

Published 2001-10

Bud Powell

Trinity Covenant RCUS, Colorado Springs


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Let God be True


The sentiment is everywhere.  Pundits and religious leaders of all denominations are swift to affirm that God had nothing to do with the terrorist events of last month.  We invert all things, but Job is very clear when he has lost all to terrorists and the forces of nature:  “The Lord gave, and the Lord hath taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord.”  [Job 1:21] 


This does not mean that such events are evidence of God’s wrath.  There are some who see the wrath of God in everything, and certainly God does bring retribution upon men for their sins—the Bible is clear about this.  But the pure wrath of God is seen only in Hell.  Until then, God brings good out of evil and works all things for the good of those who are called by His grace.


Satan and evil men are often used by God as instruments of His grace and mercy.   The king of Babylon who brought such destruction upon Israel, was called an ax in the hand of God.  [Isaiah 10:15] He was used for a while to chastise the people of God, and was cast away by God when God’s use for him was accomplished.  Most especially was his pride reproved by God for he thought that his successes were the result of his own strength.


Satan can only do what God permits him to do.  We invert the truth and say that God can only do what we permit him to do, but the devil pretty much does as he pleases on the earth.  Surely God would not have created the devil if He had not first devised what use He would make of him!


We must bow before the “manifold” wisdom of God.  [Eph. 3:10]  The simple truth is that truth is very complicated, with many sides to it.  God may have more than one purpose in a single event.  Why should we not expect this for the All-wise and Most-Loving Ruler of all things?   Why should this be thought incredible to us?  The ways of God are mysterious indeed.


It would appear that the terrorists who crashed into the Trade Towers would be greatly surprised to find themselves dropped immediately into the fires of hell, for no murderer has eternal life abiding in him [I John 3:15].  On the other hand, those who were righteous in Jesus Christ who worked in those buildings were taken into glory.


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