Can it get darker?

The answer is yes, it can. As broken as our world is, the evil grows stronger. I can only imagine the shock and grief sweeping over Orlando after this horrific weekend. A young entertainer is murdered while signing autographs. A crowded night club is the scene of America’s worst mass killing. At least 50 are killed. More than 50 others were wounded, many critically.

When Paul wrote to the Romans, he acknowledged that “all creation is groaning, awaiting freedom from the pain of this life” (Romans 8:18-22). While he was encouraging Christians to hold on during perilous times, he was also predicting an end to this world’s suffering.

He wrote to believers in Corinth: “He is the source of every mercy and the God who comforts us. He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others” (2 Corinthians 1:3,4).

It is tempting to grow cynical. It seems to be trending that God either doesn’t exist, is impotent, or indifferent to the human condition. Those views are not new. People have scoffed at the idea of a loving, present God for centuries. Who hasn’t wondered: If there is a God, why doesn’t He do something?

Is it trite or simplistic to suggest He is doing something? Moreover, He did do something and He will do something.

  • He is doing something – He sends us to comfort, to serve, to care, to help, to pray, to give, to witness, to love, to weep, to laugh, to be present, to love justice, to show mercy, and to walk humbly with God. He is working in ways we cannot see presently. He cares more about humanity than any of us ever could.
  • He did do something – Galatians 4:4 says that at just the right time, God sent His Son. Jesus did for us what we could not do for ourselves. His rescue announced the death knell of sin, death, and evil. An empty cross and an empty tomb demonstrated that God did something.
  • He will do something – There will come a time, perhaps very soon, when God will proclaim, “Enough!” When Jesus returns, He won’t arrive as an infant in Bethlehem but as the King of glory.

In that same passage in Romans, Paul declared: “What can we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? Since God did not spare even His own Son but gave Him up for us all, won’t God who gave us Christ, also give us everything else?” (8:31,32)

People of hope, comfort one another with these words.

This entry was posted in Commentary and tagged , on by .

About Mark Wilbanks

Dr. Wilbanks became Wieuca’s fifth senior pastor in February of 2012. Mark’s father, Oliver Wilbanks, served as Associate Pastor here from 1966 to 1982. Wieuca had a tremendous influence in shaping Mark’s call to ministry during his teenage and young adult years. A graduate of both Southern and New Orleans Baptist Theological seminaries, Mark has served churches in Kentucky, Florida, and Georgia. He pastored Southside Baptist Church in Jacksonville, Florida for 17 years and Bradfordville First Baptist Church in Tallahassee, Florida for ten years. He and his wife, Kim, were married in 1979 and have two sons, Andy and Jordan. Andy is married to Lindsay and they have a son, Cade, a daughter, Ruthie, and welcomed their third child, Samuel, in October.

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