Life in a small rural community continues at its relaxed pace...and then someone commits a horrific crime. A child is abducted, abused and murdered or someone commits an extremely violent murder. The community is shocked, traumatized. Residents begin locking their doors, watching their children more closely and life doesn't return to normal for a long time.
I am writing this article on the anniversary of the terrorist attack on the
twin towers of the World Trade Center. It was two (six) years ago today that
a nation was shocked, traumatized. Few of us will ever forget the feelings we
had as we saw the jetliners plow into the towers. We knew that there were people
who committted atrocities out of hatred, but that was primarily in other places
around the world. This happend in
OUR nation, to OUR neighbors! The amount of physical damage and loss of life incurred in the attacks against the World Trade Center and the Pentagon and on an airplane that fell into a Pennsylvania field was so huge that it simply left many of us stunned.
I think that Americans learned some things from the experience. I am convinced that some Americans still do not understand the true nature of Islam, but we have definitely learned some other things. We learned, for instance, that evil is real and perpetrated by determined individuals. Satan is evil and he has many workers in the world who use deceit and schemes even as he does (Jno. 8:44; Eph. 6:11).
Our inability to anticipate or stop the attacks brought home to us the fact
that we are not invincible, either as individuals or a nation. We are often
affected by the evil committed by others. We learned the power of hatred and
malice (Eph. 4:31,32).
Terrible things sometimes happen in this world because there are people who have given themselves over to hatred and the schemes which hatred breeds. Those who try to live by the high ideals of the gospel are sometimes shocked at the unconcern that others display as they murder fellow human beings.
The heroism of the firefighters and policemen in New York City, along with the benevolence shown to the victim's families by Americans in general, reminded us that there is also the potential for much good in this world, that people can be drawn to new levels of compassion and character. As a nation we were impressed with these lessons.
Do we realize that evil marches on? The war against evil is being pursued by
our government in places that we can't even spell or perhaps locate on a globe.
There are signs, however, that some Americans are tiring of the fight against
terrorism. As Christians we are fighting a different kind of war against evil.
We seek to rescue those overcome by evil by means of the preaching of the message
(2 Cor. 5:17-20). We must not grow tired in the battle for good, nor can we allow ourselves to be overcome by evil (Heb. 12:1-4; Rom. 12:17-21).
By Allen Dvorak via Gospel Power, Vol. 14, No. 37, Sept. 16, 2007.
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