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Summary: A look at the Providence of God in the face of personal and National Tragedy.

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Where Was God

On 9-11-01?

"My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?"

(Mat 27:46)

{To introduce the message have one of your best Country Music singers sing Alan Jackson’s song, “Where Were You”. Or play the song while projecting images of the Disaster on a screen using PowerPoint. Images are easily available for download on the Internet by simply typing “WTC” on your web browser.}

Some events in human history impact us so greatly, that we will forever remember the circumstance surrounding where we were when we heard the news. I’ll never forget sitting in a classroom while in the 8th grade and hearing the reports of JFK’s assassination over the school PA system. Or watching with a group of teachers, students and school administrators as Christa McAuliffe began her journey to be the first teacher in space, only to have it end so abruptly and tragically. Nor will I ever forget stepping out of the shower at about 6:00 AM {CA time) to see smoke billowing up from the North Tower of the World Trade Center and moments later see the second plane crash into the South Tower. Those images are forever embedded in my memory. You no doubt remember exactly where you were and what you were doing when you first heard the news.

But today, I want to ask and attempt to answer the question that no doubt has puzzled so many since that horrific day:

“Where was God on 9-11?” …

1. The same place He was when Adam rebelled in Eden – waiting to cover his sin. (Gen 3)

From the very beginning of human history man has acted in rebellion against God who made and loved him.

Creating man in His on image,

placing him in a perfect environment,

making him master over all creation,

providing for his every need, and

spending time with him in the beautiful garden

were ways God demonstrated his love for the crown of His creation. But, albeit deceived by the evil one, man made a conscious decision to rebel against His Creator and Friend. Where was God when man first raised his ugly head of defiance and rebellion? Couldn’t He have stopped it before it began? Oh, it is not a matter of whether or not He could have. It is am matter of His design for humanity and His plan of redemption. He designed us with a freedom of choice. In His sovereign foreknowledge He made provision before the world was ever created for man’s redemption; knowing full well that man would make disastrous choices from the beginning. When Adam and Eve finally “fessed-up”, He was there with a covering for their nakedness and shame; exacting the ultimate punishment on an innocent victim to cover man’s sin. But, He was there!

“Where was God on 9-11?” …

2. The same place He was when Noah built an ark – protecting him from disaster. (Gen 6-9)

Sadly, man’s rebellion did not end with Adam and Eve. Their sons, and their son’s sons for every generation followed in their rebellious path. Until such time that the wickedness of man filled the whole earth and its stench rose as an offense to the Holiness of God. Yet in the midst of such ungodliness, “Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord” (Gen 6:8). Here was a man, not a perfect, but a righteous man, who faithfully proclaimed the righteousness of God. (2 Pet 2) And when God, grieved by man’s wicked rebellion, determined to wipe man from the face of the earth, He furthermore determined to spare Noah and his family, and form their stock re-populate planet earth. So in mankind’s greatest natural disaster, God was on His throne protecting His own.

“Where was God on 9-11?” …

3. The same place He was when Job lost everything he had {except a nagging wife} – proving Himself to be God despite unfortunate circumstances. (Job 1-2)

Just as Noah’s generation experienced earth’s greatest natural disaster, Job would surely rank among the top in man’s history as experiencing the greatest personal disaster. Again we see a man, a good man, a godly man standing for what is right and hating what is wrong. Did being “blameless and upright” immune Job from problems, of even disaster? Of course not! Job lived on a planet that at times experienced natural disasters such as tornados, earthquakes and fire. There were evil men in his day, too, who were willing to kill and steal to get what they wanted. And, he became the special target of satanic fury. As a result, Job lost everything of value; even his precious children. Where was God? Had He turned His back on Job? Would Job return the favor by turning his back on God? No! No! and NO! God had not deserted Job. And Job would not curse God, even though he was urged to do so by a less than faithful wife.

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