· Recent terrorist events in America – significant event in history.
· Raises question: If God is good then why do bad things happen to good people.
· Terrorists hard to deal with because formed in cells.
· New level of terror unleashed to create fear and destroy confidence.
· Manifestation of hatred and evil with religious and political agenda.
· Unique – coming together of so many nations against common enemy.
· Arising of Islam – conflict with Christians Þ happening everywhere.
1. Maintain Positive Focus
· Focus on what is good.
· Focus on accomplishing goals.
Ps 101:3 “I will set no wicked thing before my eyes – eyes on faithful of Lord”.
· Fascination with knowledge of evil, tragedy.
· Eve fascinated by serpent – offer of knowledge of good and evil.
· God desired her to live by revelation – fresh direction from Him.
· Fascination of people with evil eg, TV/magazines/news media.
· Don’t ignore it – unreal. Don’t over expose to evil – especially children.
· Don’t focus upon it or then it enters your life and changes you.
Matt 6:22 “Light of body is eye Þ focus of attention”.
Phil 4:6-9 “Whatsoever things are true, honest – think on these things”
· Worry and anxiety fills inner man, drains, energy, divides attention.
· Remedy: (i) Prayer (ii) Gratitude (iii) Focus on what is good.
· Promise: Peace of God in midst of trouble.
cf Is 26:3 “You will keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you”.
· Stayed = lean upon, take hold of.
· Limit exposure to material.
· Explain to children what happening – limit their exposure.
· Direct concerns to Lord in prayer and gratitude.
· Consciously focus on what is good and acknowledge it.
2. Recentre Your Priorities on Christ and His Cause
a) Be aware of false sources of security
· People’s security rests on money, property, isolation from world events, ability to be in control of life.
· Tragedy exposes how shallow and empty those sources are.
· Tragedy shakes peoples sense of security – troubled and anxious.
· Tragedy contains opportunity for people to discover Christ.
Matt 24:6-14 “Wars and rumours of wars – see that you are not troubled”.
· Troubled = frightened, make an outcry.
· Gospel of Kingdom shall be preached in all the world.
· End times marked by troubles, relationship breakdowns, sin, revival.
Heb 12:25-29 “Everything that can be shaken will be shaken”.
· Terrorism – has been happening for years in many parts of world.
· People tend to ignore, be indifferent because doesn’t affect them.
· Eg, Ireland; Middle East; Africa; Indonesia.
b) Recentre life upon Jesus Christ and His words
· John 16:33 “In Me you shall have peace. In world you shall have tribulation – be of good cheer”.
· John 14:27 “Peace I leave with you – not as world gives, I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled neither let it be afraid”.
· Ps 112:1 “Blessed is the man that fears the Lord”.
· Ps 112:7 “He shall not be afraid of evil tidings, heart is fixed, trusting in the Lord. Heart is established he shall not be afraid”.
· Prov 1:33 “Whoso hearkens to Me shall dwell safely and be quiet from the fear of evil”.
· God does not promise that evil things will not happen.
· Cannot use God as some magic charm to avoid trouble.
· God promises peace in midst of storm – security.
· Bible and life abounds with stories of Christians who overcame evil.
· Some were rescued by God – Some died without fear (Heb 11:32-35).
· This is time to lead people to true source of security.
· Repentance and prayer + Reorder priorities (2 Chron 7:14).
3. Overcome Evil with God
a) Rom 12:18-21 “Be not overcome of evil but overcome evil with good”.
· Key problems people face are anger, hate and desire for revenge.
· Hatred that motivated the terrorism consumes and motivates those victimised. Eg, rape victims.
· Don’t harbour bitterness, hate and malice.
· Don’t judge all Arabs, all Muslims (prejudice).
· Show kindness – they are not all terrorists.
· Eg, India – during riots in 1984 many Seiks sheltered by Hindu’s.
b) Understand the place of justice and judgement
· God is a God of love but also is holy. Jer 9:23-24/Ecc 8:11 – delights in justice, judgement.
· God of mercy but also of judgement. 2 Pet 3:9
· God’s love: Confronts evil; calls for repentance; ensures consequences. Rom 14:10-12
· Love has lost meaning Þ tolerance of everything = new idol; politically correct.
· God does not tolerate evil: Eg, Adam; Noah; Egypt; Korah; Sodom; Ananias and Sapphira.
· Cross Þ God’s love and holiness: No person enters heaven without faith in Christ.
· Rom 11:22 “Behold goodness and severity of God”.
· Rom 13:3-4 Role of authority is to protect – by force if necessary.