Summary: What responsibility do we bear to our world as followers of Christ?

“There were four men who were lepers at the entrance to the gate. And they said to one another, ‘Why are we sitting here until we die? If we say, “Let us enter the city,” the famine is in the city, and we shall die there. And if we sit here, we die also. So now come, let us go over to the camp of the Syrians. If they spare our lives we shall live, and if they kill us we shall but die.’ So they arose at twilight to go to the camp of the Syrians. But when they came to the edge of the camp of the Syrians, behold, there was no one there. For the Lord had made the army of the Syrians hear the sound of chariots and of horses, the sound of a great army, so that they said to one another, ‘Behold, the king of Israel has hired against us the kings of the Hittites and the kings of Egypt to come against us.’ So they fled away in the twilight and abandoned their tents, their horses, and their donkeys, leaving the camp as it was, and fled for their lives. And when these lepers came to the edge of the camp, they went into a tent and ate and drank, and they carried off silver and gold and clothing and went and hid them. Then they came back and entered another tent and carried off things from it and went and hid them.

“Then they said to one another, ‘We are not doing right. This day is a day of good news. If we are silent and wait until the morning light, punishment will overtake us. Now therefore come; let us go and tell the king’s household.’ So they came and called to the gatekeepers of the city and told them, ‘We came to the camp of the Syrians, and behold, there was no one to be seen or heard there, nothing but the horses tied and the donkeys tied and the tents as they were.’ Then the gatekeepers called out, and it was told within the king’s household.” [1]

The story we see recorded in the text before us is a parable for redeemed people. The story in brief tells of men under sentence of death who are relieved from the immediate danger that looms before them. And the relief given to these men was not some minor happenstance; what they experienced was not inconsequential, not transient, not meaningless! These men are blessed in the extreme through an event over which they had no control. The blessing they received delivered them from the immediate death they were facing! They were unexpectedly and suddenly awash with an embarrassment of good fortune! In the midst of their stunned celebration, the men were suddenly stopped by the realisation of their personal accountability.

Sensing the responsibility that their good fortune imposes, they begin to speak among themselves. “We are not doing right. This day is a day of good news. If we are silent and wait until the morning light, punishment will overtake us.” In effect, these four men, though they have been despised and cast out by their fellow members of the city, know that they are responsible to bless others when they themselves are blessed. They don’t need a lesson in ethics to realise that if they are spared and blessed, they must tell others so that they can share in the blessing. There are lessons that we know to be true revealed in the story, and we must apply these lessons to our own lives.

GOOD FORTUNE FOR DESPERATE MEN — We are introduced to some desperate men. Few of us could ever imagine the miserable existence that would describe the life of a leper during the days in which the Bible was written. Leprosy was seen as a curse from God. If one was found with leprosy, they were driven from all society. Lepers bore the mark of God’s divine curse on their bodies, and they could never again come near people. Never again would the leper be permitted to come near enough to enjoy an intimate conversation with family or friends. Never again could a leper enjoy a meal with anyone. The leper would be shunned, not even permitted to drink water from the same well as others. And especially disheartening was the fact that the leper would be driven from worship, never permitted to enter into the sacred precincts of the Temple.

Of course, things changed with the coming of the Son of God. Throughout the Gospel accounts, we read not only that lepers drew near to Jesus, but He touched them! For example, Levi relates an instance when Jesus healed a leper. He informs readers, “When [Jesus] came down from the mountain, great crowds followed him. And behold, a leper came to him and knelt before him, saying, ‘Lord, if you will, you can make me clean.’ And Jesus stretched out his hand and touched him, saying, ‘I will; be clean.’ And immediately his leprosy was cleansed” [MATTHEW 8:1-3].

On another occasion, Doctor Luke tells us how ten lepers sought healing. They appear to have banded together out of desperation since they were outcasts. Well, let’s allow Luke to tell us the story. “On the way to Jerusalem he was passing along between Samaria and Galilee. And as he entered a village, he was met by ten lepers, who stood at a distance and lifted up their voices, saying, ‘Jesus, Master, have mercy on us.’ When he saw them he said to them, ‘Go and show yourselves to the priests.’ And as they went they were cleansed. Then one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, praising God with a loud voice; and he fell on his face at Jesus’ feet, giving him thanks. Now he was a Samaritan. Then Jesus answered, ‘Were not ten cleansed? Where are the nine? Was no one found to return and give praise to God except this foreigner?’ And he said to him, ‘Rise and go your way; your faith has made you well’” [LUKE 17:11-19].

I suppose we could make excuses for the other nine. Presumably, they were Jews. However, it is almost as if they presumed they deserved healing because of their heritage. What is important for the moment is to note that Jesus not only healed these with a word, but he permitted them to approach Him closely so that they could make their requests. Things were changing because the Son of God came.

Jesus sent His disciples out, saying, “Go nowhere among the Gentiles and enter no town of the Samaritans, but go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. And proclaim as you go, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse lepers, cast out demons. You received without paying; give without pay. Acquire no gold or silver or copper for your belts, no bag for your journey, or two tunics or sandals or a staff, for the laborer deserves his food” [MATTHEW 10:5-10].

Jesus not only healed lepers, allowing them to approach Him, even reaching out to touch them, but He sent His disciples out, commanding them to actively seek out the lepers. The disciples were not merely to permit lepers to come to them, they were to “cleanse lepers,” which would mean that they had to move deliberately toward the lepers in order to cleanse them. This command serves as the basis for the institution of hospitals established in the Name of Christ. Wherever you find the Faith of Christ the Lord, you find His people actively seeking to heal and to bless through health services.

Recall the account that tells of the disciples of John coming to Jesus at a time when John was despondent—and he had plenty of reason to feel low. Jesus responded to their inquiry of these disciples of John who were asking whether He was the long promised Messiah whom people were expecting. Jesus replied to them, “Go and tell John what you hear and see: the blind receive their sight and the lame walk, lepers are cleansed and the deaf hear, and the dead are raised up, and the poor have good news preached to them. And blessed is the one who is not offended by me” [MATTHEW 11:4-6].

Jesus declared that it was a new day! Already, things were changing from what had prevailed throughout society. With the coming of the Christ, lepers would no longer be cast out; rather, lepers were hereafter to be healed! Because the Christ had come, lepers would no longer be socially ostracised. From this point forward they would be actively sought out so that they could be made whole! Those whom society has shunned for millennia past will now be healed and brought into the community of Faith!

I know that I’m speaking of a medical condition, or at least a physical situation. However, don’t neglect the statement Jesus made that the poor have good news preached to them. Those who lived on the margins, those who were excluded by the socially elite would henceforth be invited to share in the society of the redeemed. The followers of the Messiah wouldn’t be restricted to the hoi polloi of society. Everyone would have a place in the worship of Messiah; no one would be excluded because they were undesirable. From this point onward, the Good News would be for everyone.

I’m not wandering too far afield to remind us that here, in the assembly of the righteous, there is no social caste. The impoverished and the wealthy come to the Saviour, and one is not superior to the other. It has been said that the eagle had to swoop down to enter the door over which the snail crawled. Just so, entering into the Faith requires that each one comes without precedence over another. Each one must come in faith, confessing their dependence on the blood of Christ the Lord. The drunkard who has been transformed by the grace of God is as welcome as is the teetotaler. The thief who has been saved is as welcome as is the jurist who once sentenced him to prison. Here, in the House of the Lord, there are not lords and serfs; we are all just Christians, sinners saved by grace. Amen.

Our view of lepers has changed dramatically in this day. Scientific advances ensure that Hansen’s Disease, the name given to the disease formerly known as leprosy, can be cured. The disease is not highly contagious, and it progresses rather slowly in those infected with the mycobacterium that causes the disease. The disfigurement that is characteristic of the disease is the result primarily of a loss of neurological transmission. Those infected with the disease lose the ability to feel pain, and so they are liable to burn themselves, liable to injure themselves, liable to be unaware of disfiguring injuries.

As an amusing aside, during graduate studies, at one point I was conducting research on the haem molecule which is bound by haemoglobin. The particular study I was conducting focused on armadillo haemoglobin. Now, it was not uncommon that the subject of our studies could on occasion become dinner for poorly paid graduate students. I brought home two fat rabbits each night during one extended period, since all I required for these particular studies was the heart. We were conducting studies on the heart mitochondria, and after removing the heart and preparing the mitochondria for studies, I would clean the rabbits and place them in the refrigerator in order to take them home that evening. Lynda could write a cookbook on one hundred one ways to prepare rabbit.

When conducting studies on the structure of citrate synthase and the role the enzyme plays in the Krebs cycle, six boxes of Mexican mangos were imported to the laboratory each week. Though at that time mangos were prohibited from being imported from Mexico, these mangos were designated for research. Thus, they passed through customs and were available for our studies each week. I suppose it shouldn’t be too shocking that mangos were found on multiple laboratory benches and on the various desks situated throughout the laboratory. This was especially the case whenever a shipment arrived, especially when the fruits were beautifully ripe and sweet.

At another point in my studies I was assigned to a laboratory conducting studies on tuna myosin. Fresh tuna from the west coast was flown in once each week. The fresh tuna was destined to serve as a source of myosin for studies being conducted in that lab. It was not unheard of that a few tuna steaks would go missing whenever a shipment was received. At another time, I shared in some of the luaus resulting after pig livers destined for use in microsomal preparations had been excised. The carcases of the minipigs were then used to provide a luau as a treat for the entire floor of the biosciences building.

In light of this information, I doubt that you would find it surprising that when we were using armadillos as subjects for our research, they were viewed as just another protein source by some graduate students. Armadillos had been eaten in Texas during the dirty thirties, being called “Hoover Hogs” by Texans that ate them at that time. Armadillos looked good to most of us, until we discovered that recent studies had demonstrated that the only creature other than man that carries the bacterium causing leprosy was … you guessed it, armadillos. After that revelation, armadillo was off the menu. The little creatures were safe from being handled, except for research purposes.

I suppose I’ve travelled far enough along this rabbit trail. The point of this excursus is to demonstrate that our view of leprosy has changed dramatically with the passage of time, though some fears persist. Leper colonies can still be found even in this enlightened day. Hundreds of leper colonies still exist; more than seven hundred such colonies can be found in India alone. These colonies exist despite the fact that the World Health Organisation declared leprosy officially “eliminated” as a public health problem in 2000. Leprosy victims tend to be isolated primarily because of traditional ostracism in their communities. [2] The disease is still feared despite the cures available.

For the most part, we who live in the western world are not able to fully grasp the fear that gripped people when confronted with leprosy in that distant day. Perhaps we would have a better understanding of the irrational fear demonstrated by people in that ancient day if we think of the way in which many people reacted with irrational fear at the prospect of contracting the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Some of us were set upon by wild-eyed individuals screaming that we were trying to kill them if we failed to place a face diaper on our head in timely fashion. The image of a lone individual driving in an automobile with the windows up and a mask over their mouth and nose is emblematic of the unreasonable fear promoted by politicians. People were not even permitted to go walking alone in a forest unless they were masked! People were actually arrested while walking on a deserted beach because they failed to drape a piece of cloth over their face. The response was unreasonable and irrational; it was political rather than medical.

The biblical text gives us some insight into the desperation by these four men felt. Listen to them as they discuss their plight. “Why are we sitting here until we die? If we say, ‘Let us enter the city,’ the famine is in the city, and we shall die there. And if we sit here, we die also. So now come, let us go over to the camp of the Syrians. If they spare our lives we shall live, and if they kill us we shall but die” [2 KINGS 7:3b-4].

Their reasoning ran along this line: “There’s a chance that we might live if we go over to the Syrian camp. I mean, it is possible that they may give us some food. But we know that we will be chased out of the city if we even try to go in there. Let’s at least take the chance.” Desperation was driving these four men to enter the camp of the hated enemy in hopes that they may receive some food. They felt they had nothing to lose; the worst thing that could happen would be that the Syrians would kill them, and they considered that would be a mercy in light of what they had suffered to that point in life.

One can never predict what the future holds. We might prepare for what lies ahead, projecting the potential for a given course of action based upon the most likely scenario. We can say that a given situation has presaged a particular outcome in the vast majority of cases throughout the past, but we can’t guarantee that the outcome will be identical in the future. Some things are reasonably certain—smoking tobacco entails serious health risks. Though the stock market goes up and down, investing in equities yields greater returns than holding bonds over the longer course. Kicking a bear probably will result in serious injuries. There may be exceptions to these outcomes, but as is true throughout all nature, the exception proves the rule. Nevertheless, these four lepers were going to die, either from starvation as they were excluded from the dwindling supplies in the city, or because the Syrians decided to kill them.

Then, everything changed in a moment of time. The four lepers did go into the camp of the Syrians. We can see them approach the camp hesitantly, trepidation marking every step these men make. Perhaps they questioned why no sentry challenged them. Who knows what doubts tore at their hearts, even as their desperation drove them onward until at last they were actually in the camp. No one was in sight. Not a single soldier stirred or moved to halt the four men. Hesitating at the entrance to a tent, one of the men stuck his head inside. No one was there. He withdrew his head and looked all around, but there wasn’t a person to be seen save for his companions.

They entered into another tent. Everything seemed to be in order. There was food and water, clothing and weapons, personal items—but there was no soldier in the tent. They greedily grabbed some of the cheese and the meat, the bread and the wine, and began to sate the raging hunger than had gnawed at their bellies for days. At first, they ate with a sense of nervousness, anticipating that the impromptu feast they were enjoying would be interrupted momentarily. Then, as the moments passed, it became obvious that they were alone in the camp. There were no Syrians, and they were alone with the rich provisions they discovered in the tents of the Syrians.

Gathering some of the richly embroidered clothing and the intricately crafted items for adorning the body, the men rushed to another tent, carrying out clothing and jewellery—items that could be bartered at a later time for food or for a place to stay. The men were almost delirious with excitement at the good fortune they now experienced. They had gone into the camp expecting it might be the last thing they would ever do, only to discover blessing and unanticipated fortunes. They found more than they could use in a lifetime, and no one was there to chase them away!

CONSCIENCE STRICKEN MEN AFTER FORTUNE SMILES — “They said to one another, ‘We are not doing right. This day is a day of good news. If we are silent and wait until the morning light, punishment will overtake us. Now therefore come; let us go and tell the king’s household’” [2 KINGS 7:9].

In the midst of their joy and their excitement, these men were conscience stricken. Perhaps they recalled lessons they had learned as children when their parents had instructed them about their responsibilities as members of the community. It was true that they had been driven from the community, but they recognised that they still had responsibilities to be godly, to be righteous. No matter how harshly they had been treated, no matter how hard their existence had been, these men knew that there is a God, and that He expects us to act honourably and with integrity.

God’s blessings were never meant to be sequestered, hidden away and harboured as though you alone are to be blessed. The blessings of God are meant to be shared. God’s love that is showered upon people must never be kept, lest it becomes infested with worms like manna that was hidden away for another day [see EXODUS 16:20-21]. Morning by morning the Lord showers His great mercy upon all mankind, and especially does He shower mercy upon His beloved people. Jeremiah testifies to this, writing,

“The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases;

his mercies never come to an end;

they are new every morning;

great is your faithfulness.”


Even when we are disciplined by the Lord, we who worship the Living God know we are blessed. His blessings are truly new every day as He gives us rest and then wakens us. It is essential to recognise that the blessings which are poured out on us are never meant to be ours alone. God blesses us and shows us His mercy so that we might bless others.

Perhaps you will recall the manner in which Paul opens his Second Letter to the Church of God in Corinth. The Apostle writes, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For as we share abundantly in Christ’s sufferings, so through Christ we share abundantly in comfort too. If we are afflicted, it is for your comfort and salvation; and if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which you experience when you patiently endure the same sufferings that we suffer. Our hope for you is unshaken, for we know that as you share in our sufferings, you will also share in our comfort” [2 CORINTHIANS 1:3-7].

God blesses us in order to equip us to bless others. The blessings of the Lord enable us to bless others with the very blessing we received. Why do we encourage generosity toward those who have needs? Isn’t it because we have received rich blessings that obligate us to be generous toward others. This is the teaching Jesus delivered when He sent out the twelve on their first tour declaring the message of life. Jesus charged them, “Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse lepers, cast out demons. Freely you received, freely give” [MATTHEW 10:8 NET BIBLE].

While giving instruction in showing generosity toward fellow saints in need, Paul reminded the saints in Corinth, “You know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you by his poverty might become rich” [2 CORINTHIANS 8:9]. We are encouraged to model ourselves after the Master in this matter of generosity. We do this by making ourselves aware of need by refusing to turn away when we see a need and by consciously cultivating the spirit of generosity. Knowing the heart of the Master, we seek to relieve need.

I know that it is impossible for us as individuals, or even as a congregation of the Risen Saviour, to meet every need in the world. There is not enough wealth held by all who worship here to address every need in our own community. Moreover, it is no secret that much of what is presented as need in our world is the result of greed, sloth, and poor choices by those presenting themselves as needy.

Drunks and drug addicts placed themselves in the perilous situation in which they find themselves. Rescuing such individuals will only result in the need to rescue them again tomorrow. It is one thing if they genuinely want to change and are willing to do the hard work to turn from the destructive path they are now treading, and quite another if all they are looking for is enough “help” to make it to the next fix. Peter aptly describes the condition of many, perhaps of most people described by this situation when he writes, “The proverb is true that describes what has happened to them: ‘A dog returns to its vomit,’ and ‘A pig that is washed goes back to wallow in the mud’” [2 PETER 2:22 ISV].

People who refuse to work, who will not do something to better themselves, must not be confirmed in their sloth. The admonition of the Apostle, though directed at members of the assembly, must surely apply to those in the world. Remember how Paul has taught, “If anyone doesn’t want to work, he shouldn’t eat” [2 THESSALONIANS 3:10 ISV].

Even when we have eliminated these immediate problem situations from our generosity, there will remain more than we can ever address as individuals or as a congregation. Though I don’t profess to have as complete an answer as I might wish, I will share the guidance I have applied throughout my life. My first priority is to be generous toward those of our own congregation. We share both in the Faith and in the assembly of the righteous. Those who worship together in this place are as close to family as we can imagine. We intuitively sense in an intimate fashion the intent of Jesus’ words when He spoke to the crowds, saying as He stretched out His hand toward His disciples, “Here are my mother and my brothers! For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother” [MATTHEW 12:49-50].

This direction is more natural than we might imagine. The Apostle Paul has cautioned us, “If anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for members of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever” [1 TIMOTHY 5:8]. This being true, it is no stretch to understand that an attitude of unconcern for our church family is a condemnation of our spirit, a spirit that does not reflect the heart of our Lord.

When we have helped those with whom we are intimately associated, we reach out to our fellow Christians, wherever they may be found. We see this attitude displayed as the Apostle led various assemblies to reach out with assistance to fellow Christians suffering in distant locations. He admonished the Corinthians, “Now concerning the collection for the saints: as I directed the churches of Galatia, so you also are to do. On the first day of every week, each of you is to put something aside and store it up, as he may prosper, so that there will be no collecting when I come” [1 CORINTHIANS 16:1-2].

Let me provide another example of Paul’s concern for those in need beyond the immediate congregation to whom he wrote. Writing the Christians worshipping in Rome, Paul told of his concern for fellow saints in need. “At present, however, I am going to Jerusalem bringing aid to the saints. For Macedonia and Achaia have been pleased to make some contribution for the poor among the saints at Jerusalem. For they were pleased to do it, and indeed they owe it to them. For if the Gentiles have come to share in their spiritual blessings, they ought also to be of service to them in material blessings. When therefore I have completed this and have delivered to them what has been collected, I will leave for Spain by way of you” [ROMANS 15:25-28].

Recall the example of the churches in Macedonia, whom Paul pointed to as examples for generosity. “We want you to know, brothers, about the grace of God that has been given among the churches of Macedonia, for in a severe test of affliction, their abundance of joy and their extreme poverty have overflowed in a wealth of generosity on their part. For they gave according to their means, as I can testify, and beyond their means, of their own accord, begging us earnestly for the favor of taking part in the relief of the saints” [2 CORINTHIANS 8:1-4].

What is evident is that Scripture provides guidance for us in sharing what God has entrusted to our oversight. We are responsible first to address the needs—needs, and not wants—of those in our immediate congregation. They are family, and we feel the weight of love impelling us to relieve their burden. Then, as God gives opportunity, we recognise that we are to strive to bless fellow worshippers of the Christ who may be living at a distance from ourselves. We accept the responsibility, as much as we are able, to provide required relief for saints who may meet at a location remote for our own assembly. Only then should we feel need to address outsiders. It is not that we are not compassionate or unconcerned for their hurt, but we recognise our limitations and we act with discretion to maximise what we are able to do.

It may seem that I’ve wandered quite far afield. However, looking again at our text, I note that the four men recognised that they had been blessed. Some might say that fortune smiled on them. They recognised that the Lord had provided for them, and they knew that they were not to stoop to thinking that the blessing they had received was for themselves alone. They knew that they were to share God’s blessing so that others could be likewise blessed. In providing the views that I have just presented, my purpose is simply to endeavour to provide guidance for sharing the blessing.

Beyond the particular steps we may take to address the issue of benevolence, I urge the people of God to cultivate a generous heart. In what is arguably the earliest book written that was included in the canon of the New Testament, James, the brother of our Lord, includes this gem: “If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him” [JAMES 1:5].

I am fully aware that the verse is speaking specifically about wisdom, however, note the description of our God: “God, Who gives generously to all without reproach” [JAMES 1:5]. What an apt description of the Lord our God. The Apostle teaches a similar lesson in 2 CORINTHIANS 9:6-11, writing, “Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that having all sufficiency in all things at all times, you may abound in every good work. As it is written,

‘He has distributed freely, he has given to the poor;

his righteousness endures forever.’

He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will supply and multiply your seed for sowing and increase the harvest of your righteousness. You will be enriched in every way to be generous in every way, which through us will produce thanksgiving to God.” Amen!

CORRECTING THE ERROR — “[The lepers] came and called to the gatekeepers of the city and told them, ‘We came to the camp of the Syrians, and behold, there was no one to be seen or heard there, nothing but the horses tied and the donkeys tied and the tents as they were.’ Then the gatekeepers called out, and it was told within the king’s household” [2 KINGS 7:10-11].

Imagine, if you will, a city threatened with total disaster that is at last saved as result of a message delivered by men who were shunned. We learn that the city was saved; and yet, those who brought the message that would save the city would not be permitted to join in the festivities. These men who yelled out the message of deliverance from the pending doom would be forced to again return to their lonely lives marked by a hardscrabble existence. However, these lepers, outcasts though they were, had a moral responsibility to tell others of the freedom that was just beyond the gates of the city. Though they might never benefit from delivering others, they could not remain silent and expect to be blessed.

The lepers acted morally, graciously, and in a commendable manner. The king and all within the city were saved from starvation and from conquest by the Syrians. Suspecting a ruse to lure the city into opening the gates so they could be invaded and conquered, the king nevertheless dispatched a squad of horsemen to investigate. The squad discovered that the besieging army had indeed fled beyond the boundaries of the nation, discarding their gear as they ran. The siege of the city was lifted and the people were able to get food to feed themselves and their families, all because four men living on the fringes of that society delivered good news.

In light of the message delivered today, it would be easy to make the message about the need for generosity in distributing the wealth we hold. Indeed, the concept of benevolence has been addressed at length to this point. However, I am compelled to point to an even greater need for the people of God. We are living in perilous times when the people of God are besieged, and society is poised on the precipice of destruction. Our education system is in tatters as educators function as indoctrinators working tirelessly to destroy trust in the system of government we have enjoyed for generations.

Our national debt in Canada is over one trillion dollars as our financial system is systematically destroyed as government drives us into debt spending ever greater amounts on frivolous “wants” designed to enrich political overlords, purchasing votes from the unknowing masses of the nation. People have laboured to acquire moneys so that they could care for their families in the twilight years of life, only to see their savings and their investments disappear into the ether. To fund increasingly bizarre schemes, governments invent new taxes in order to steal more moneys from the governed, ensuring an ever more fragile society built on a shaky foundation that may collapse momentarily.

Trust in government is increasingly thrown into question as Parliament imposes one unconscionable scheme after another on the people. Trust between the races is stretched until it is torn as a few strident voices do all possible to promote themselves while ensuring the social fabric is destroyed. Morality is trampled in the mud as children are taught to normalise the most vulgar acts and to embrace the most dissipated values. Evil is promoted as entertainment, and few seem aware that the very foundations are being destroyed.

Long years past, the Psalmist asked,

“If the foundations are destroyed,

what can the righteous do?”

[PSALM 11:3]

It is as though the question was penned millennia past just for us in this day. And that is the point of the message today.

The people of God, we who are followers of the Christ, have the answers that society needs to avoid disintegration. We have the Spirit of Christ living within, and we have the Word of the Living God. The great tragedy for society is that the people living in western culture do not even know the danger they face. They suspect that something isn’t right, if only because they are aware of the tension that disquiets them. The people have no answer for why they are terrified or for how they should respond to the challenges they face. What is evident is that it is insane to think that the people that created the mess in which we find ourselves can provide an answer. There will be no answer given by political leaders, or even from religious leaders in this day. The answer to our problems lies within the purview of godly men and women who even now seek the face of the Lord GOD.

Long years past, the LORD promised His people, “Call to me and I will answer you, and will tell you great and hidden things that you have not known” [JEREMIAH 33:3]. Surely there are among the professed people of the Risen Christ a man or a woman, a remnant who, though small in numbers, dare believe that the Glorious Saviour will hear them as they pray and give them wisdom and power to declare His grace, turning some from the destruction that threatens.

Once, God promised the people, “If my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land” [2 CHRONICLES 7:14]. We, the people of God, have received the rich gift of knowledge of the Living God. We have been entrusted with His power witnessed as the Spirit of Christ works in us. We have received His Word with all the knowledge of what is right and good. Our responsibility is to deliver this precious treasure to an unbelieving and blinded world. Some will hear us as we point to Christ as Master, and those few will be saved. Surely, the message we have will deliver our children and our grandchildren, if we tell them and don’t hesitate to act boldly as redeemed people.

We have opportunity today to rescue some, and who knows but that through a few who dare believe His Word, our God will deliver our nation. We have this treasure and this opportunity to deliver some into life in Christ. And we hold our peace. Amen.

[1] Unless otherwise indicated, all Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. Wheaton: Standard Bible Society, 2016. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

[2] Jules Suzdaltsev, “Where Do Leper Colonies Still Exist?”, Where Do Leper Colonies Still Exist? - Seeker, accessed 16 November 2022; “Leper Hospitals and Colonies,” Leper Colonies (, accessed 16 November 2022