Summary: President Bush’s Bible Reading for Sept 11 A mosiac of selections from various daily devotionals for Sept 11, 2001
Idols for Destruction
“So each of the people likewise cut down his own bough and followed Abimelech, put them against the stronghold, and set the stronghold on fire above them, so that all the people of the tower of Shechem died, about a thousand men and women.” Judges 9:49
“The tower of Shechem must have been a massive structure to hold a thousand people. But it was a worthless refuge for those who trusted in idols.” . . . so concludes the journal entry of Ligonier Ministries’ daily devotional TableTalk for Tuesday, September 11, 2001. This chillingly prescient article deals with a nation founded upon God’s law that exchanged the “glory of Israel” for graven images made by the hand of man. In a surreal twist of the storyline, God’s judgment fell upon His unfaithful people by the hand of an evil man. Table Talk concludes with a quote from Matthew Henry, “Thus, when God makes use of men as instruments in His hand to do His work, He means one thing and they another. (Isa. 10:6-7)”
When God’s judgment falls upon a nation He first humiliates and then destroys that nation’s gods. Egypt worshiped and gave sacred oblations to the gods of the Nile River, to the sun and to ox-headed deities. At God’s command the Nile was turned to blood, the sun was blackened and the oxen were struck with plague and boils and hail. The statue of Dagon, powerful god of the Philistines, fell on his face when the captured ark of the Lord was placed before the vile fertility image. Not once but twice it did obeisance to the Almighty, prompting their Philistine theologians to declare,
“. . . you shall give glory to the God of Israel; perhaps He will ease His hand from you, your gods, and your land.” 1 Samuel 6:5
George Mason, a founding father of our nation prophetically proclaimed, “As nations can not be rewarded or punished in the next world they must be in this. By an inevitable chain of causes and effects, providence punishes national sins, by national calamities!” A short distance from the Pentagon, inscribed with an iron stylus on blocks of granite, the walls of the Jefferson Memorial in Washington proclaim the words of our third President,
“And can the liberties of a nation be thought secure, when we have removed their only firm basis, a conviction in the minds of the people that these liberties are of the gift of God? That they are not to be violated but with his wrath? Indeed I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just: that his justice can not sleep forever.”
I am immensely comforted by the fact, that President Bush has publicly stated that he uses The One Year Bible for his personal daily devotions. Providentially his reading for the morning of September 11 reads, “By the wrath of the Lord Almighty the land will be scorched and the people will be fuel for the fire;”3
On Tuesday, September 11th, the World Trade Towers, worldwide symbol of the god Mammon and the Pentagon our invincible god of power were struck by the hand of an offended God. Tragically many thousands of Americans lost their lives, as must invariably happen, when God strikes a nation for its national sins.
Regrettably for our generation, God’s justice has awakened! We, as a nation, have replaced the worship of the true God with a Pantheon of gods in a heavenly realm known as “Secular Humanism”.
Long has Mammon, the god of wealth and profit, been venerated in the hearts of our people. A main tenet of its worship is “. . . egocentric covetousness which claims man’s heart and thereby estranges him from God (Mt. 6:19ff.)”4 Our nation has been alienated from the God of our fathers in its sin and enslaved to serve this unforgiving god through the belief that debt is “good” and that to squander our children’s inheritance by mortgaging the future is no great sin. Mammon’s most popular doctrine among our people is the Doctrine of Convenience. In the practice of this belief, we willingly approve the sacrifice of our children and our elderly on its altar. Children, whom God calls a “reward”5 or blessing, are viewed as cardinal sin because they disrupt our cash flow and do despite to our net worth. Can we really explain the difference between worshipping Molech, the vile god of the Canaanites whose worship demanded that live children be burned in a roaring fire and mothers of our generation who aborted their offspring by burning the skin off their baby by the means of a saline injection or ripping it to pieces moments before birth?
Ashtoreth demands that sodomy and other sexual perversion be used in her worship to assure the fertility of the nation. Today her “worship” floods our living room altars (TV) displaying acts that invoke the spirit of a sordid Canaanite fertility rite.