O Lord my God, in you I take refuge; save me from all my pursuers, and deliver me.
Matthew 5:11 (NIV)
Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me.
The concerns have been raised this Fourth of July about possible terrorist attacks in the United States. Earlier this week there was a scare at the Washington Navy Yard that shots had been fired. Authorities are urging citizens to be vigilant. The internet chatter and other signals of possible trouble are said to be at an all-time high. With attacks in Europe, and the Middle East, and Egypt, and the intense fighting in Syria against ISIS, there is plenty evidence of evil’s intent: mayhem, death, terror, and destruction.
All this is evidence, however, of a greater evil intent and more vicious enemy. Satan, the accuser of our souls, destroyer of good, father of the lie, and thief is prowling like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour (1 Peter 5:8). He is the chief villain, the head of the cabal, the prince of this world. His intent is to bring us all down; to undercut everything good that God has in store for his people.
Our salvation and security are in God’s hands. Our safety and protection come from him. While we live in a fallen world, we can be thankful for the service men and women, police officers, and who protect us from evil of every kind. We can thank God for the freedom we have as citizens of this nation – even as we repent for making those freedoms license for immorality. But let us not forget that whatever evil may befall us, no one can put Jesus back into the grave. No one can take God off his throne. God has saved us by his mighty power and abundant grace and love. Nothing can change that. Thank God!