Monday, October 16, 2023

Pastor's Ponderings, October 16, 2023

God Still Reigns In The Middle East


On October 13, 2023, as the world looked on with horror, soldiers from Hamas from the Gaza Strip attacked Israel and succeeded in bringing death, chaos, confusion, and anger as they slaughtered their citizens and took away some for hostages.  When Israel returned fire, many advised caution because those living in the Gaza Strip were living in an open-air prison and were also suffering under the ruling regime of Hamas.  


The Bible proclaims that when wicked are in authority, their citizens suffer (Proverbs 29:2).  How should those who love the Lord respond to these and other acts of unspeakable and repugnant acts?  We must recognize that these acts do not come from God, but they come from our adversary the devil (1 Peter 5:8).  His purpose has not changed from the beginning of the world, which is to kill, steal and to destroy (John 10:10a). We are not fighting against people but against unseen evil forces (Ephesians 6:12)


Those who love the Lord must remember that Jesus came to destroy the devil’s work (1 John 3:8).  We are not using conventional warfare, terrorist tactics, or nuclear weapons but we use the weapons of God (2 Corinthians 10:4-5).  We have been given the authority to forbid and to permit knowing that whatever we forbid or permit in the earth has already been forbidden or permitted in heaven (Matthew 16:19). We must speak the word of God like Jesus spoke to the storm and said, “Peace, be still” (Mark 4:39). 

Let us not forget to pray for those in authority because they are in the hand of God (Proverbs 21:1).  Let us remember to pray for those on both sides who are suffering and dying.  Let us remember that even though these attacks are personally horrible and painful, our God is still in control.


Proverbs 29:2

New International Version

2 When the righteous thrive, the people rejoice; when the wicked rule, the people groan.


1 Peter 5:8
New International Version

8 Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.


John 10:10a

New International Version

10 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy….


Ephesians 6:12

New Living Translation

12 For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.


1 John 3:8

New International Version

8 The one who does what is sinful is of the devil, because the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the devil’s work.


2 Corinthians 10:4-5

New International Version

4 The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. 
5 We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.


Matthew 16:19

New Living Translation

19 And I will give you the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven. Whatever you forbid on earth will be forbidden in heaven, and whatever you permit on earth will be permitted in heaven.”


Mark 4:39

New King James Version

39 Then He arose and rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, “Peace, be still!” And the wind ceased and there was a great calm.


Proverbs 21:1

New International Version

21 In the Lord’s hand the king’s heart is a stream of water that he channels toward all who please him



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