Summary: Written to give our nation hope amid the uncertainty of world terrorism, especially the tragedy that happened on September 11, 2001 in our nation’s history. God is our strength!
“Amid Uncertainty, God Is Our Strength”
“Don’t Hunker Down In The Bunkers”
Ezekiel 33:11 page # 1339
From the pulpit of Bayview Baptist Church, Sunday, September 16, 2001
On Tuesday, September 11, 2001, the fragile peace and mind of the greatest nation that has ever existed on earth was shattered as 3 airplanes crashed into 3 separate buildings, the Twin World Trade Towers in New York which stood 110 stories each, and the Five-sided Pentagon at Washington, DC.; and a 4th airplane crashed short of its destination in Pennsylvania.
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This extreme terrorist activity against our nation and people left mental devastation, not just on the victims and the families of the victims, but upon the soul of our nation.
I like the words or Rev. Billy Graham in his sermon Friday at the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C.
He said, “I’ve been asked hundreds of times in my life why God allows tragedy and suffering. I have to confess that I really do not know the answer totally, even to my own satisfaction.”
“I have to accept, y faith, that God is sovereign, and He is a God of love and mercy and compassion in the midst of suffering…”
how true those words of Rev. Graham are.
The fact that God is good does not mean that He will protect us from all suffering.
Rather, it meant that He will be with us in our suffering, and accomplish His good purposes through it.
In Isaiah Chapter 43, and verses 2 & 3 we read: “When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you.”
“When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.”
“For I am the Lord, your God, the Holy One of Israel, you Savior…”
God is great; God is good, and God is still in control!
I had just finished eating breakfast this past Tuesday morning and I was watching the Today Show with Katie and Matt.
I, like many of you, thought that the first airplane that rammed into one of the World Trade Center towers about 20 floors from the top, must have been a fluke accident caused by an airplane malfunction, but when I saw the Boeing 767 passenger plane hit the second World Trade Tower, my thoughts immediately turned to thinking that this had to be an extreme terrorist attack.
Is there any place that’s really safe anymore?
We used to think that our homes were safe, but we’ve become more and more aware that our homes are no longer safe.
We used to think that our workplaces were safe, but workplace violence has shattered that illusion.
We used to think our schools were safe, but school based violence has changed all that.
This past Thursday the Aviation Engineering school in Conway SC that our son Jason attends sent all the students home because of a bomb threat.
We used to think our churches were safe, but in September, 1999, a man named Larry Ashbrook changed all that when he walked into a church and killed 7 people, four of them teenagers.
After Tuesday, September 11, 2001, we can safely say there is no place on earth that is truly safe!
In the midst of this national tragedy, we must ask ourselves what God feels about random acts of violence that have become much too commonplace in our nation.
The Bible says in Ezekiel 33:11 “As surely as I live, declares the Sovereign Lord, I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, bur rather that they turn from their ways and live. Turn! Turn from your evil ways!...”
I want you to notice that these words did not come from the lips of the prophet Ezekiel.
He wrote these words, but they came directly from the lips of God as He was speaking to Ezekiel.
Ezekiel was literally being used as the mouth piece of God!
No other generation in the last 2,000 years has faced such times of upheaval than we have.
But the worst thing that we could possibly do would be to hunker down in the bunker in fear.
For, God is still looking for men and women, and boys and girls who are boldly confident in Jesus; people who are willing to live by their faith, love, and hope in these cataclysmic times.
Amid all conflict there is opportunity, and we have been given a golden opportunity in America today to witness to the world about the eternal things of God.
We can tell our country, we can tell individuals, that the One constant power in the Universe is God’s invitation to come to Him by the way of His only begotten Son and the blood He shed for us at Calvary’s cross.