Sunday, August 02, 2015

BELIEVE IT AND NOT

WE’VE HEARD OF OR SEEN THE STRANGE things at
Ripley’s Believe It or Not. The Three-Legged-Man, the Two-Headed-Sheep, the Tattooed-Man with the Forked-Tongue. All pretty weird and even gross at times. And most of it truly unbelievable!

It’s one thing to walk into Ripley’s and say, “I don’t believe it!” It’s quite another thing to be walking through the Word of God and say, “I don’t believe it!” Yet, let’s be honest, most of us have said that very thing, including myself.

Yes, even I, one of the pastors of Felton Bible Church, have read something in Scripture and disbelieved its reality. Not so much the events like creation or the flood, and definitely not the salvific work of Jesus Christ upon the cross.

No, the things I often have difficulty with is when the psalmist writes, “The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles.” (Psalm 34:17) And there are others that fall into the same category. There are those  passages that just don’t seem to match up to the realities in my own life, the lives of others I know, the lives affected by tragic death of Maddy Middleton, and in the places where women and children are being slaughtered in the name of some god or country.

It’s tough to read that God saves people who call on Him out of their troubles when the troubles continue. Yes, yes, I know that God is still saving many and there is the ultimate salvation in Jesus Christ (Psalm 145:18; Romans 10:13) but it’s still tough!

So, where is the hope in all this? Well, not unsurprisingly, it of course comes from God’s Word which calls us to place our hope in Him, His strength, righteousness, justice and goodness; Consider Psalm 133:20-22,

We wait in hope for the Lord; he is our help and our shield.
In him our hearts rejoice, for we trust in his holy name.
May your unfailing love be with us, Lord, 
even as we put our hope in you.

Thus, we wait in and with hope!

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