Wars and Rumors of Wars
(Editor's Note: When brother Huddleston wrote this article and sent it to me, the war with Iraq had not yet begun.)
It is looking more and more like the United States is going to war with Iraq. With all the talk and hype, many people are getting very worried and anxious. The US government is telling its citizens in the USA to carry on as usual and not to get too anxious or paranoid. They did advise citizens to be more alert about what is going on around them and to exercise good security measures at home, when traveling, at work, etc. Many are buying plastic and duct tape to seal up their homes, buying can goods to last for weeks and on and on. Of course, it is good to be prepared, but many are going overboard. Many have let fear get the best of them and will not travel by plane or travel overseas. Should we let infidel terrorists scare us to the point that we stop evangelizing overseas? As Christians we are to be concerned with what the Bible has to say about these things.
A Spiritual Kingdom
First, we must always remember that we are in a spiritual kingdom. In John 18:36, Jesus answered, My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now is my kingdom not from hence. A spiritual kingdom involves a spiritual King who is also our spiritual Rock (1 Timothy 1:16-17; 6:14-15; Revelation 15:3; 17:14; 1 Corinthians 10:4). It is made up of a spiritual people who constitute a spiritual house, not made with human hands (1 Corinthians 2:15-16; Galatians 6:1; 2 Corinthians 5:1-2; 1 Timothy 3:15; 1 Peter 2:5). Our kingdom has a spiritual law made up of spiritual things which gives us spiritual understanding and all spiritual blessings (Romans 7:14; 15:27; 1 Corinthians 2:13; Colossians 1:9; Ephesians 1:3). With this spiritual understanding, we are equipped to sing spiritual songs, equipped to offer up our spiritual sacrifices, equipped to give an answer to everyone that asks a reason of the hope that is in us, thoroughly equipped for every good work, and fully equipped to stand and fight all spiritual wickedness which fills this world (Ephesians 5:19; Colossians 3:16; 1 Peter 2:5; Hebrews 13:15-16; 1 Peter 3:15; 2 Timothy 3:16-17; Ephesians 6:12; 1 John 5:19).
This spiritual Kingdom brings freedom. In John 8:32 Jesus said, And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. What frees us? The Truth. What is the Truth? In John 17:17 our Lord says, Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth. The Truth is the Word of God. What are we freed from? The bondage of such men as Saddam Hussein or Adolph Hitler? Or the bondage of man-made bills and finance? Some would have us believe this, but what does the Bible say? In John 8:33-34, They answered him, We be Abraham's seed, and were never in bondage to any man: how sayest thou, Ye shall be made free? Jesus answered them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whosoever committeth sin is the servant of sin. The freedom we have as Christians is the freedom from the bondage of sin. Who frees us from the slavery of sin? Is it the United Nations in all their glory? It is the Son of God, Jesus Christ, who makes us free. If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed (John 8:36). Since we have been freed from sin and worldliness by Jesus Christ and his word, we must remain free from sin and worldliness (Galatians 5:1).
Worry VS the Peace That Passes Understanding
Under the Old Testament, the Jews lived under a law that also gave them a civil law. God spoke through Prophets and told them when they needed to go to war against an intruder or invader and what to do to win that war. As we have already pointed out very extensively, Christians live under a spiritual law. We are told to obey the law of our land and the leaders of it (Romans 13:1; Titus 3:1). But these leaders are to make the political decisions and are responsible to God for those decisions.
Some say that Christ came to bring peace and we are to live at peace with all men. Yes, and in Romans 12:18 where Paul tells us to live at peace with all men, he qualifies that with the phrase, If it be possible. Some people do not want to live in peace, and we have no control over them. However, just as the Apostle Paul defended himself by appealing to Caesar, we have the right to defend our families and ourselves. If we do not defend, care and provide for our families, we are worse than an infidel (1 Timothy 5:8).
Above all, when it comes to worrying about wars and rumors of wars, we have warned by Jesus, our King and leader. He says, And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet (Matthew 24:6). Currently, many people all over the world are worried, frightened, and terrified, about the looming war. Strangely, many of these are far removed from any danger of being attacked or from any bodily harm to themselves, but they still let themselves get all worked up into frenzy. Ben Ladens terrorists and Saddam Hussein have a hatred for Christians and Jews, and the two countries which represent them most, America and Israel. As Christians, we must not let wars or rumors of wars worry, frighten or terrify us. We cannot trust in men or ourselves. We must trust in God and be ready for whatever may come our way. Paul says, But we had the sentence of death in ourselves, that we should not trust in ourselves, but in God which raiseth the dead: Who delivered us from so great a death, and doth deliver: in whom we trust that he will yet deliver us (2 Corinthians 1:9-10). Christians have a special spiritual inner peace that surpasses all human knowledge and understanding. Hear the words of the Lord!