"Why Did God Let It Happen?"

 

Millions are crying out to God following our national tragedy; the horrifying attack by murderous terrorists on the twin trade towers and the Pentagon. Yet, there are many others who say they "are mad at God!" Prominent religious leaders who spoke at the National Cathedral in Washington DC plaintively echoed the same question, "Why did God allow such a terrible thing?" Here, from your own Bible, is the true answer!

By Garner Ted Armstrong   [printer-friendly]    [pdf format]

If God is a God of LOVE; if He is a God of mercy, compassion, and a God who treasures His children, then WHY did He allow such a horrendous, unbelievable mass murder? In recent weeks, many clerics have been interviewed on national television. One was asked, "Is it alright for a person to be `mad at God' for what happened?' Incredibly, he answered “yes.” He then went on to elaborate, saying that one should "talk out their anger," with God, explaining to Him why they were angry; why they felt they had been deserted! Incredible!

For centuries, men have wrestled with this seeming contradiction.

The Bible says, "God is love." All our lives we are told "God loves us." We are told He is a God of great compassion; of forgiveness. Then, when tragedy strikes, people are unable to see how a God of love and compassion can "let such terrible things happen!"

To many, it is a proof that there Is no God! Many become atheists and agnostics when tragedy strikes. Toward the end of World War II, a young German soldier, who was later to die in front of Stalingrad, wrote to his Catholic priest in Germany, and said, "If there is a God, He is with you in your chants and prayers; in your candles and cathedral - but He is not here with us in the frozen trenches in Stalingrad."

An atheist wrote words to the effect that, "So long as there are children born who are crippled; so long as there is sickness and disease; so long as there is murder and war, there is no god worthy of our consideration."

All of these people completely missed the point. Ignorant of God's word, they do not know the plan of God; the purpose for human life.

Dr. Billy Graham spoke of the "mystery" of iniquity, in the sense that such horrifying attacks were not understandable, but a "mystery" to us. But the scripture in 2 Thessalonians 2 about the "mystery of iniquity" does not refer to massive loss of life or terrorist attacks, but to a false religious leader and his "Babylonian mystery" religion; making GOD into a "mystery," and has nothing whatsoever to do with our inability to comprehend massive tragedies and loss of human life.

Two famous television evangelists were a little more direct. While I do not choose to identify them, here are some exact quotations from their television program which followed America's catastrophic terrorist attack. One said, "...I really believe that the pagans, the abortionists, and the feminists, and the gays and lesbians who are actively trying to make that an alternative lifestyle, and the ACLU, People for the American Way -- all of them who have tried to secularize America--I point the finger in their face and say, `You helped this happen"'. His co-host, another very famous evangelist, said he concurred: "Well, I totally concur, and the problem is we have adopted that agenda at the highest levels of our government."

An outcry followed their remarks, and they later accused the news media of taking their views "out of context." Of course, there is a vast difference between saying "God AI.I.OWED this to happen," and saying "God CAUSED this to happen." Certainly, the television evangelists did not say God caused it. One said, "...God Almighty is lifting His protection from us." It is actually closer to the truth to realize God has not given us His protection, because we have not turned to Him with our whole beings; our whole hearts. However, one's mind boggles at the thought that these murderous terrorists were like God's agents to bring punishment against the kind of people described above. When Jesus Christ was asked a similar question, here is what happened: "There were present at that season some that told him of the Galileans, whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices.

"And Jesus answering said unto them, Suppose ye that these Galileans were sinners above all the Galileans, because they suffered such things?

"I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.

"Or those eighteen, upon whom the tower in Siloam fell, and slew them, think ye that they were sinners above all men that dwelt in Jerusalem?

"I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish" (Luke 13:1-5). Christ was asked about mass death; in the first case, murder, and in the second, an accident. He plainly said the victims were not singled out because they were any worse than any other citizens of their country.

His meaning is clear: That unless people REPENT of their sins (1 John 3:4; Acts 2:38), then if and when death comes - no matter how it comes - they will simply perish. They will NOT perish because they are any MORE evil than others, but because they are JUST AS EVIL, as all their fellow citizens! God had nothing to do with those deaths. It was time, chance, and circumstance! Why? Because God's PROTECTION was not applied to those people! Does God promise special PROTECTION to those who are striving to obey His laws; who have repented, been baptized, and have received His Spirit, and become His own beloved children?

He says He does! Read the beautiful 91st Psalm: "He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.

"I will say of the LORD, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust.

"Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler, and from the noisome pestilence.

 "He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust: his truth shall be thy shield and buckler.

"Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night; nor for the arrow that flieth by day;

"Nor for the pestilence that walketh in darkness; nor for the destruction that wasteth at noonday.

"A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it shall not come nigh thee.

"Only with thine eyes shalt thou behold and see the reward of the wicked.

"Because thou hast made the LORD, which is my refuge, even the most High, thy habitation;

 "There shall no evil befall thee, neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling.

"For he shall give his angels charge over thee to keep thee in all thy ways.

"They shall bear thee up in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone.

"Thou shalt tread upon the lion and adder: the young lion and the dragon shalt thou trample under feet.

"Because he hath set his love upon me, therefore will I deliver him: I will set him on high, because he hath known my name.

"He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honour him.

"With long life will I satisfy him, and show him my salvation" (Psalms 91:1-16).

Just as God protected the Israelites IN THEIR OWN HOMES when the plagues fell on Egypt, so God promises to protect His people who trust in Him! As they had the blood of the lambs on their doorposts, so, if we have the blood of Christ covering our sins, will the “death angel" pass over us!

Did Christ promise that NO ONE would ever be hurt in the tribulation? No, decidedly not! He said to His disciples, "But before all these, they shall lay their hands on you, and persecute you, delivering you up to the synagogues, and into prisons, being brought before kings and rulers for my name's sake.

"And it shall turn to you for a testimony.

 "Settle it therefore in your hearts, not to meditate before what ye shall answer:

"For I will give you a mouth and wisdom, which all your adversaries shall not be able to gainsay nor resist.

"And ye shall be betrayed both by parents, and brethren, and kinsfolks, and friends; and some of you shall they cause to be put to death [SOME would be chosen to be Christ's martyrs! James, Peter, Paul were all martyred, as was Christ].

"And ye shall be hated of all men for my name's sake.

"But there shall not an hair of your head perish [obviously, He was speaking of those who are NOT chosen to be His martyrs, and also referring to eternal life as opposed to physical life].

"In your patience possess ye your souls" (Luke 21:12-19).

Christ said those who are engaged IN HIS WORK are also promised His protection! "Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth" (Revelation 3:10).

On the other hand, emphasizing the fact that some will be chosen - a GREAT HONOR, by the way - to be Christ's martyrs, God's word says, "And they worshipped the dragon which gave power unto the beast: and they worshipped the beast, saying, Who is like unto the beast? who is able to make war with him?

"And there was given unto him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; and power was given unto him to continue forty and two months.

"And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme his name, and his tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven.

"And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations" (Revelation 13:4-7).

Not only does God NOT promise that the Christian life will be one of wonderful comforts, abundance, happiness and safety, but He promises the exact opposite! Jesus Christ said the way which leads to life is NOT the broad, well lighted, attractive avenue of the majority, but a rocky, tortuous, difficult road, and "few there be that find it." He promised His disciples, "Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves.

"But beware of men: for they will deliver you up to the councils, and they will scourge you in their synagogues [churches! It is the RELIGIOUS fanatics who will do this!];

"And ye shall be brought before governors and kings for my sake, for a testimony against them and the Gentiles [the power of the STATE will be used against God's people].

"But when they deliver you up, take no thought how or what ye shall speak: for it shall be given you in that same hour what ye shall speak.

"For it is not ye that speak, but the Spirit of your Father which speaketh in you.

"And the brother shall deliver up the brother to death, and the father the child: and the children shall rise up against their parents, and cause them to be put to death.

"And ye shall be hated of all men for my name's sake: but he that endureth to the end shall be saved" (Matthew 10:16-22).

Jesus Christ was the most perfect, holy, righteous human being to ever live! Yet, God ALLOWED His own Son to be MURDERED, because He was to become the sacrifice for the sins of all mankind. Could God have prevented Christ's death? Notice, "Then Pilate entered into the judgment hall again, and called Jesus, and said unto him, Art thou the King of the Jews?

"Jesus answered him, Sayest thou this thing of thyself, or did others tell it thee of me?

"Pilate answered, Am I a Jew? Thine own nation and the chief priests have delivered thee unto me: what hast thou done?

"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" (John 18:33-36). Jesus Christ did Not say that His servants are pacifists; that they would never resort to force. It was a question of WHICH GOVERNMENT for which His servants would fight. And WHEN Christ's Kingdom is set up on this earth; WHEN Christ rends the heavens and comes down to rule this world with a rod of iron, His servants WILL join Him in conquering the godless, hating, murdering, warring nations! Read Revelation 19:11-21 in this regard.

This Is Not God's World

This is not God's world. These are not God's nations; not God's institutions; not God's religions, for the most part. In America, we print "In God we trust" on our money. But that is largely mere form, and not substance. We do not truly trust Him, we only SAY we do.

Paul wrote, "This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.

"For men shall be lovers of their own selves covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,

"Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good,

"Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;

"Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away" (2 Timothy 3:1-5). Millions have a "form" of religion! They dutifully go to church on a day which God never made holy, listen to a sermon about love, or faith, or forgiveness, and then go back to their workaday lives, not realizing the purpose and plan of God; believing in dozens of utterly false doctrines, such as the "immortality of the soul," the concept of "going to heaven," and the concept of an "ever burning hell fire." They have no knowledge that the God of the Old Testament is Jesus Christ of the New (John l, Hebrews 1), or that the Law has not been done away, but was in full force and effect prior to Sinai; that Jesus Christ taught there is coming a resurrection of the dead; that we are to be born into the great Family of Elohim; that Christ is coming to rule this world for 1,000 years with a rod of iron!

Your Bible says that the Eternal God is NOT presently the God of this world! "But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost:

"In whom the god of this world [who is Satan the devil!] hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them" (2 Corinthians 4:3, 4). Satan the devil is the god of this world. He is the evil influence behind the bulk of the world's religions; behind terrorism; behind all of the world's degenerate, perverted behavior.

God identifies the enemy of mankind as the one who DECENES all nations: "And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels,

"And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven.

"And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him" (Revelation 12:7-9). The religious leaders of this world, from the "Taliban" in Afghanistan to the "Imam" in Iran, or the "Mullas" in the Mosques, to the Pope, to the presidents of all the major Protestant organizations would rise up in great, self righteous WRATH to be told that SATAN THE DEVIL is the architect of their religions! Each accuses the other. Millions of Muslims believe America is "the great Satan." Millions of Americans feel that Islam extremism is a hateful, Satanic religion. And what do nominal Christians think of a Hindu woman, squatting at the rear end of a Brahma cow, "anointing" the head of her baby with cow's urine? It is easy for the self righteous to point a finger, and condemn other religions, but not possible for them to look deeply into their own doctrines and practices and see the evil hand of the great deceiver.

When Jesus Christ assayed to tell the rabbis and congregation of the synagogue in His home town of Nazareth, He nearly lost His life right there and then! Can you imagine a "religious service" disintegrating into a mindless attempt at MURDER?

Here is what happened: "And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up: and, as his custom was, he went into the synagogue on the sabbath day, and stood up for to read.

"And there was delivered unto him the book of the prophet Esaias. And when he had opened the book, he found the place where it was written,

"The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised,

"To preach the acceptable year of the Lord.

 "And he closed the book, and he gave it again to the minister, and sat down. And the eyes of all them that were in the synagogue were fastened on him.

"And he began to say unto them, This day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears.

"And all bare him witness, and wondered at the gracious words which proceeded out of his mouth [He must have talked for a few minutes, elaborating on the scripture, and His bold claim to be the One fulfilling it]. And they said, Is not this Joseph's son?"

"And he said unto them, Ye will surely say unto me this proverb, Physician, heal thyself: whatsoever we have heard done in Capernaum, do also here in thy country.

"And he said, Verily, I say unto you, No prophet is accepted in his own country.

"But I tell you of a truth, many widows were in Israel in the days of Elias, when the heaven was shut up three years and six months, when great famine was throughout all the land;

"But unto none of them was Elias sent, save unto Sarepta, a city of Sidon, unto a woman that was a widow [He SHOCKED them by saying that God allowed hundreds, perhaps thousands, of their country to die, and instead sent His prophet to a Sidonian woman ONLY!] .

"And many lepers were in Israel in the time of Eliseus [Elishah] the prophet [a horrible, disfiguring disease!]; and none of them was cleansed, saving Naaman the Syrian [Plainly, He told them God IGNORED the lepers in Israel, and sent His prophet instead to an ARAB; a Syrian king!] .

"And all they in the synagogue, when they heard these things, were filled with wrath, "And rose up, and thrust him out of the city, and led him unto the brow of the hill whereon their city was built, that they might cast him down headlong.

"But he passing through the midst of them went his way,

"And came down to Capernaum, a city of Galilee, and taught them on the sabbath days" (Luke 4:16-31). Plainly, Jesus Christ told them, paraphrasing, that this was NOT GOD'S COUNTRY! That they had turned their backs on God and His laws; that these were not God's religious leaders; not God's government; not God's social institutions! They HATED Him for saying that! Instead of heeding His words, and REPENTING of their hard-hearted attitudes, they tried to MURDER Him right then - these, who were allegedly "teachers of the law."

Irrational And Illogical Protest

Plaintively, people invariably cry out, "Where was God when...?" and then add the description of the latest tragedy; the latest loss of life. But God has NEVER DEALT IN PREVENTIVE LEGISLATION! Do YOU want God interfering in your own life your personal decisions? Many who read these words are smokers. You KNOW, and you know that you know, that smoking causes emphysema, lung cancer, heart disease! But you just "cannot seem to quit." You have “tried," you say. You have tried the patch, and nicoderm, and "cold turkey" and various kinds of gum or something. Eventually, many confirmed smokers just shrug, look around at all the other people who smoke, or think about George Burns, who lived to be 100 while smoking a daily cigar, and say "I will take my chances." But, when lying there in the hospital, being told their lungs will no longer function, and knowing they will die a terrible death, they call out to God!

But what would you think if, when you reached for your next cigarette or dip of snuff, there was a sudden hidden, unseen hand that grabbed you, and PREVENTED you from taking out your tobacco? What if God FORCED you to obey the rules of good health?

Do you see? When it comes right down to it, people do NOT WANT GOD TO RULE IN THEIR DAILY LIVES! If He did - thousands of you parents would NOT be allowed to let your children throw tantrums, hit others, sass their parents, scream and cry when they do not get their way, or shout "NO!" at their parents! God would FORCE you to use loving, firm discipline!

And if He did, you would be VERY ANGRY AT GOD, saying "How DARE you treat my child like that!"

People want a God of "convenience." They want God to bail them out of every difficulty, but leave them alone when they are doing what THEY want to do.

Those who blame the American intelligence community are, oftentimes, the same people who gleefully emasculated our FBI and CIA; the people who resent ANYTIHING which smacks of "covert" operations! During the Carter administration, America tried to foist off upon third world countries; Hindu, Buddhist, Animist, Confucianist, Islamic, Jewish-whatever-the "Bible belt morality" of mainstream American fundamentalism!

When Col. Ollie North was being excoriated by a self righteous Congress for having dealings with an Iranian "sleazebag" named "Gorbanifar," I was shouting at my television set, wondering WHY the Congress seem determined to have a Communist government in Nicaragua!

Today, people are saying "Where was the FBI and the CIA, and the government - WHY DIDN'T THEY KNOW?" concerning the attack on the twin Trade Towers and the Pentagon." Yet, millions of people gleefully participated in the emasculation of those agencies by their demand "the people have a right to know!" We should not keep any secrets from the public! We are self righteously indignant at such things as wire tapping, surveillance, and any remote incursions into our personal freedoms and human rights. Any such thing is fodder for the dozens of "conspiracy" theories and the many militias, who believe our own government is their enemy!

But we cannot have it both ways! In a carnal, warring, God-rejecting world, it is both silly and hypocritical to have a "FORM" of religion and attempt to inject that concept into FOREIGN POLICY! Since we do not TRUST GOD wholly and totally to deliver us from our enemies, and since, as a nation, we do not OBEY GOD, why grow angry at Him for refusing to protect us?

God says to us, "Hear, O heavens, and give ear, O earth: for the LORD hath spoken, I have nourished and brought up children, and they have rebelled against me.

"The ox knoweth his owner, and the ass his master' s crib: but Israel doth not know, my people doth not consider.

"Ah sinful nation, a people laden with iniquity [lawlessness!], a seed of evildoers, children that are corrupters: they have forsaken the LOIzD, they have provoked the Holy One of Israel unto anger, they are gone away backward.

"Why should ye be stricken any more? ye will revolt more and more [like a rebellious child, who, though punished, continues to rebel]: the whole head is sick, and the whole heart faint.

"From the sole of the foot even unto the head there is no soundness in it; but wounds, and bruises, and putrifying sores: they have not been closed, neither bound up, neither mollified with ointment.

"Your country is desolate, your cities are burned with fire: your land, strangers devour it in your presence, and it is desolate, as overthrown by strangers.

"And the daughter of Zion is left as a cottage in a vineyard, as a lodge in a garden of cucumbers, as a besieged city [terrorism certainly is LIKE A SIEGE - causing sleeplessness, nervousness, depression, fear, suspicion, apprehension!].

"Except the LORD of hosts had left unto us a very small remnant, we should have been as Sodom, and we should have been like unto Gomorrah.

"Hear the word of the LORD, ye rulers of Sodom; give ear unto the law of our God, ye people of Gomorrah...And when ye spread forth your hands, I will hide mine eyes from you: yea, when ye make many prayers, I will not hear: your hands are full of blood.

"Wash you, make you clean; put away the evil of your doings from before mine eyes; cease to do evil;

 "Learn to do well; seek judgment, relieve the oppressed, judge the fatherless, plead for the widow.

"Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.

"If ye be willing and obedient, ye shall eat the good of the land" (Isaiah 1:1-18). These striking verses might well be applied to our land today! Remember, there is a vast difference between saying GOD CAUSES such horrendous loss of life, and admitting that HE DID NOT PREVENT IT! On the one hand, He says He CAN, and HE WILL if we will only turn to Him with our whole hearts, and seek His laws and His ways in our personal daily lives!

But I totally reject the concept that murderous terrorists were as if "agents of God" in punishing the United States! Instead, I know from the word of God and Christ's own teaching, that GOD SIMPLY HAS NOT INVOLVED HIMSELF in the religions, politics, and evil organizations of this world, and that He has NOT granted us BLANKET PROTECTION from those who would afflict us, any more than He protected Israel and Judah from horrifying wars, and even enslavement!

Notice further what God says is the REASON why God does not intervene: "Behold, the LORD'S hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear:

"But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear.

"For your hands are defiled with blood [we LEAD THE WORLD in murder; we murder tens of thousands of unborn babies every year!], and your fingers with iniquity; your lips have spoken lies, your tongue hath muttered perverseness.

"None calleth for justice, nor any pleadeth for truth: they trust in vanity, and speak lies; they conceive mischief, and bring forth iniquity.

"They hatch cockatrice' eggs [poisonous snakes], and weave the spider's web: he that eateth of their eggs dieth, and that which is crushed breaketh out into a viper.

"Their webs [their intricate schemes and plans] shall not become garments, neither shall they cover themselves with their works: their works are works of iniquity, and the act of violence is in their hands.

"Their feet run to evil, and they make haste to shed innocent blood: their thoughts are thoughts of iniquity; wasting and destruction are in their paths.

"The way of peace they know not; and there is no judgment in their goings: they have made them crooked paths: whosoever goeth therein shall not know peace.

"Therefore is judgment far from us, neither doth justice overtake us: we wait for light, but behold obscurity; for brightness, but we walk in darkness.

"We grope for the wall like the blind, and we grope as if we had no eyes: we stumble at noonday as in the night; we are in desolate places as dead men.

"We roar all like bears, and mourn sore like doves: we look for judgment, but there is none; for salvation, but it is far off from us.

"For our transgressions are multiplied before thee, and our sins testify against us: for our transgressions are with us; and as for our iniquities, we know them;

"In transgressing and lying against the LORD and departing away from our God, speaking oppression and revolt, conceiving and uttering from the heart words of falsehood.

"And judgment is turned away backward, and justice standeth afar off: for truth is fallen in the street, and equity cannot enter" (Isaiah 59:1-14).

Is not this PLAIN? God is TELLING us WHY HE LET THIS TERRIBLE TRAGEDY HAPPEN! ! HE did not DO it to us! He is NOT directly using hideous hate-consumed, vicious murderers to torment and shock the United States, but NEITHER IS HE PREVENTING them from doing so!

We Have Free Moral Agency

You and I are "free moral agents." We have a CHOICE each and every day. God tells us, "I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live" (Deuteronomy 30:19). The WAY of peace and safety; of good health and long life is the way of God's laws, which are given to us for our great GOOD!

But man has not chosen GOD'S WAY of life!

 Instead, we have chosen the way of vanity, jealousy, racism, greed, covetousness, hatred, xenophobia, ego, selfishness, competition, strife, lust and self-satisfaction. Those who "ran to hide" when the stock market opened, rather than standing fast and doing nothing, are illustrative of the extreme selfishness, and unwillingness to SACRIFICE that motivates so many! Instead, they thought, "I will get MINE while I may!"

Those who jacked up gasoline prices; who flooded the food stores to stock up; especially those who dared to LOOT the dismembered bodies of victims in the Trade Towers are people who exemplify the WORST motives of the human heart!

Now, WHY did God let this monstrous, horrific terrorist attack happen? HE COULD HAVE PREVENTED IT, arid HE COULD PUNISH THOSE RESPONSIBLE if we were truly God's people - a commandment-keeping people - a people who are living as Jesus Christ lived!

But just as God did NOT alleviate the suffering in Israel during their long famine, but sent His prophet ONLY to a Syro-Phoenecian woman; just as He DID NOT alleviate the suffering of all the lepers during Elisha's day, but sent him instead to a Syrian King, so God is NOT INTERFERING in the day to day lives of the governments of this world! God was simply NOT INVOLVED. God has not recently "TAKEN AWAY" His protection from us - for we never had it in the first place! We were not protected at Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, and we were not protected in New York and Washington on September 11, 2001.

On the other hand, it is obvious that God HAS INTERVENED to save our nation on many occasions in the past! While He has not given us "blanket protection" from every tragedy, He HAS intervened when it was necessary to spare us from total destruction! I believe God intervened on several occasions during World War II, for example. While He did not fight our battles FOR us, He nevertheless intervened by what appeared at the time as a MIRACLE!

Think about the Battle of Midway, the real turning point of the war in the Pacific! Had our intelligence agents not broken the Japanese code, we would not have known about the impending Japanese attack. But, armed with the knowledge of where and when they would strike, our carrier forces were waiting for them northeast of Midway. While God did not spare the loss of famous "Torpedo 8," wherein an entire squadron of lumbering TBM Grumman "Avenger" torpedo planes were shot down, and every crewman but one lost, that brave sacrifice of those men brought the Japanese zero fighters down to sea level, just as, by "chance," the dive bombers under Lt. Wade McClusky arrived overhead the Japanese carriers. ALL FOUR of them; the Kaga, Akagi, Hiryu and Soryu, were sunk!

While we lost the carrier Yorktown, and many aircraft, it was nevertheless a smashing, resounding victory for the United States, and a true turning point in the Pacific. To me, it has always seemed like a case of God divinely INTERVENING to help us win that battle.

I believe God intervened to PREVENT Hitler from obtaining the atomic bomb before we did! There were MANY times during that great, global conflict when miraculous events occurred which saved our nation. The same thing can be said for Great Britain!

But God did not spare us from any losses whatsoever! In this is found an analogy of what God says to His disciples. "SOME of you" shall be put to death, but "not an hair of your head shall perish!"

There is a great difference between "blanket protection" and God's intervention from time to time as He feels necessary! He did not prevent us from great loss of life during that war, but I believe with all my heart that HE HELPED US WIN it!

And, IF the horrendous event of September 1 l, 2001 proves not to be the beginning act of the great prophesied drama of the tribulation, heavenly signs, and the day of the Lord, then perhaps God can still give us VICTORIES over those who so brutally, savagely, and viciously committed those suicide attacks, and dealt our nation (and the world) such a staggering blow!

As an American, I HOPE THAT Is so! I do not WANT to see our peoples experience any further mass death! I would FAR rather see us repent AS A NATION, not only as isolated individuals, and AVERT it!

Make no mistake! I believe that, from the carnal and physical point of view; as a man-made government, that the United States of America is the BEST COUNTRY IN THE WORLD! I am an extremely PATRIOTIC American! I do not WANT OUR PEOPLE TO GO THROUGH THE GREAT TRIBULATION! Would that we can turn to God and PREVENT such a thing! But the threats of chemical, biological, and even nuclear attacks are REAL!

I am not chicken little. I am NOT telling you anything you do not know, or have not seen on your own television sets, or hear on your radios, or read in your newspapers!

Jesus Christ SAID we would be living in such times! Read Matthew 24 and Luke 21!

The GOOD news for God's people is found in Christ's reassuring words, "'Then said he unto them, Nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom:

"And great earthquakes shall be in divers places, and famines, and pestilences; and fearful sights and great signs shall there be from heaven.

"But before all these, they shall lay their hands on you, and persecute you, delivering you up to the synagogues, and into prisons, being brought before kings and rulers for my name's sake.

"And it shall turn to you for a testimony.

 "Settle it therefore in your hearts, not to meditate before what ye shall answer:

"For I will give you a mouth and wisdom, which all your adversaries shall not be able to gainsay nor resist.

"And ye shall be betrayed both by parents, and brethren, and kinsfolks, and friends; and some of you shall they cause to be put to death.

"And ye shall be hated of all men for my name's sake.

"But there shall not an hair of your head perish.

"In your patience possess ye your souls.

"And when ye shall see Jerusalem compassed with armies, then know that the desolation thereof is nigh.

"Then let them which are in Judaea [not in Kansas, or England, or Australia] flee to the mountains; and let them which are in the midst of it depart out; and let not them that are in the countries enter thereinto.

"For these be the days of vengeance, that all things which are written may be fulfilled.

"But woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck, in those days! for there shall be great distress in the land, and wrath upon this people.

"And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and shall be led away captive into all nations: and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled.

"And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring;

"Men's hearts failing them for fear [heart attacks!], and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken.

"And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory.

"And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh" (Luke 21:10-28).

This is not a time for FEAR! Perfect love casts out fear! It is not a time to give in to TERRORISTS ! It is a time for God's people to RALLY TO HIM, to rally to HIS WORK; to come together as never before! It is a time to REJOICE for we know that the Day of the Lord will follow the heavenly signs, and that the coming of CHRIST HIMSEI.F to this earth is growing nigh!

It is time to "LIFT UP OUR HEADS," for our redemption is drawing near!

As patriotic Americans, we should PRAY for our leaders! We should pray for those who have suffered, and are still suffering the agonies of the deaths and terrible injuries to loved ones. We should pray for those intrepid, courageous rescue workers, who exhausted themselves trying to find any survivors in that hideous, monstrous pile of rubble. We should pray that there will be a SPIRITUAL AWAKENING in our country; that people will SEEK GOD as never before!

May God cause thousands more of our peoples to seize this window of opportunity - to TURN TO HIM with all their hearts, and to receive His gracious forgiveness and His Holy Spirit!

 

-End-

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The Garner Ted Armstrong Evangelistic Association
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