Peace and Safety

Dear Brethren,

There has been so much in the news recently that it is hard to put things in their proper perspective.  As Christians we must be so careful not to get caught up in this world.  With all of the chaos and confusion in the world, God warns us that the time is soon coming when we will have to be particularly cautious when evaluating world conditions.  It can cause us to feel good about our nation when we finally see our leaders take a strong stance against those who have been our sworn enemies after so long a time – as has recently taken place with North Korea.  Though we have generously been the world’s breadbasket, we can find ourselves saying enough is enough to those who take advantage of our benevolence.  Our trade deficit has grown to an unsustainable figure.  We are the world’s most mighty nation and we can easily get to thinking that we’ve made ourselves rich and powerful.  God wants us to be able to deal with other nations from a position of strength—His strength—and not our own.

What brought North Korean Chairman Kim Jong Un to the denuclearization table?  The answer, sanctions—strong sanctions.  Not only sanctions enforced by the United States, but surprisingly those of China and Russia in response the United Nations Security Council which unanimously approved tough new sanctions against North Korea in response to its launch of a ballistic missile that Pyongyang says is capable of reaching anywhere on the U.S. mainland.  Isn’t it surprising that the United States finds itself in the same bed with China and Russia in a bold move to denuclearize the entire Korean peninsula?  That is not my allegory but God’s who says to us that the time is coming that we will not be able to make ourselves attractive to other nations no matter how hard we try:

Jeremiah 4:30  When you are spoiled, what will you do? Though you clothe thyself with crimson, though you deck yourself with ornaments of gold, though you rent your face with cosmetics, in vain shalt you make yourself fair; your lovers will despise you, they will seek thy life.

When our nation looks to other nations for security and prosperity – instead of looking directly to God, God equates that disloyalty with infidelity.  God considers alliances, leagues and treaties with ungodly nations to be a betrayal of His love – unfaithfulness – spiritual harlotry, and He refers to those foreign nations as “lovers.”  God says that our lovers will turn on us – and as we have betrayed Him – they will betray us.  Those countries with which we have treaties are going to turn on us and destroy us.

God says that the soon coming national punishment is His retribution for rejecting Him and disdaining the tremendous blessings He has bestowed on us.  We will be utterly let down by our allies.

Jeremiah 30:14  All your lovers have forgotten you; they seek thee not; for I have wounded you with the wound of an enemy, with the chastisement of a cruel one, for the multitude of your iniquity; because your sins were increased.

Lamentations 1:2  …among all of her lovers she has none to comfort her.

We are living in a time of unprecedented peace and prosperity.  God has blessed us – not because of our own inherent greatness – but because of His covenant with Abraham as He said:

Genesis 12:2  I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing.

God kept His promise to Abraham and made us a great and wealthy people.  God expected ancient Israel, and He expects us also, to depend on Him entirely for every need.  Israel was told not to make a military treaty, neither a defense alliance, nor to enter into a trading confederation with other nations.  God expressly forbade Israel from entering into alliances, leagues or covenants with their neighbors for the purpose of security, religion, or commerce.  God said:

Leviticus 26:12  I will walk among you, and will be your God, and ye shall be my people.

The Bible cannot be any clearer as to how God regards treaties when it comes to foreign nations.

Exodus 23:32-33  You shalt make no covenant with them, nor with their gods.  They shall not dwell in thy land, lest they make thee sin against me: for if thou serve their gods, it will surely be a snare unto thee.

However, Israel chose to enter into covenant-agreements with surrounding nations for the purpose of creating secure and prosperous treaties with its neighbors.  God had warned Israel not to enter into alliances and treaties – but rather to look to Him for protection and blessings.  Historically, alliances have not been instrumental in preserving peace.  It seems, in fact, that immediately prior to most major wars, there is a rapid realignment of treaties and alliances for the sake of strengthening strategic power.

Brethren, we do not want to become complacent when we know that all is not going to end well.  China is rapidly buying up vast properties in this country with their huge trade surplus.  It is too late to stem the tide.  China is investing in America – immigration, businesses, homes, farmland, real estate, infrastructure and natural resources.  You do not hear much about it, but China is foreclosing on America.  God says,

Deuteronomy 28:43  The stranger that is within thee shall get up above you very high; and thou shalt come down very low.

Just yesterday the U.S. announced an aggressive new set of tariffs against China, setting a 25 percent import tax on $50 billion worth of “industrially significant technologies” imported from China – including components used in electronics manufacturing, batteries, electric motors, transistors, etc.  China has threatened to retaliate against such tariffs, stoking fears of a far-reaching and unpredictable trade war between the countries.  When China turns mean we will try one last time for Peace and Safety. For a short while everyone will believe that world peace has been achieved, but it will be a pseudo-peace.

1Thessalonians 5:3-4  When they say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction comes upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape. But you, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief.

Today's Sermon:  "Peace and Safety"