On Earth as it is in Heaven

June 7, 2020

Two recent news items have actually garnered more attention than COVID-19 updates during the past week.

Attorney Benjamin Crump said about the incident that occurred on Memorial Day, May 25th, “We all watched the horrific death of George Floyd on video as witnesses begged the police officer to take him into the police car and get off his neck. This abusive, excessive and inhumane use of force cost the life of a man who was being detained by the police for questioning about a non-violent charge.”  But that was only the beginning.  This tragedy sparked riots and protests beginning in Minneapolis where George Floyd was unjustly killed and have since spread as rapidly as the COVID-19 virus.  Massive destruction of property, some of great historical value, as well as horrific violence resulting in loss of human life, health, and dignity ensued.  As if the fear that COVID-19 instilled in the hearts of so many, especially those most vulnerable, was not enough; just when the lockdown was starting to ease, people have returned to remaining behind locked doors out of fear of something much larger than a virus – human hatred.  Fear and hatred.  I’m sure you know in whose arsenal these two weapons are found…

Then on Saturday, May 30th, SpaceX Falcon 9 with NASA astronauts Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken in the Dragon crew capsule, lifted off from Pad 39-A at the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida.  They left this earth to travel beyond our atmosphere and board the International Space Station.  From there the earth appears as a beautiful blue globe set against the darkness of space.  One cannot see the rampant crime, the all-consuming hatred, the injustice, and every other result of the virus of sin that has infected all of mankind – a virus far more deadly and pervasive than COVID-19 or any other. 

But while the astronauts cannot see the evil on earth from space, God can.  He sees it all.  His love and mercy extend to all of the victims that have suffered as a result of the original infection of sin on this earth, and that has since spread to every person ever born.  Some may have suffered more than others, when measured by human standards, but all are in need of a Savior.  A Savior that can free their spirit of fear, and of hatred.  A Savior that can give them the hope of a world free from sin, from pain, from sickness, violence, and death.  While it will not become a reality until Jesus returns or we pass from this life into the next, it most certainly will become a reality some day for those of us who have put their faith in our Lord, Jesus Christ.  And that hope gives us the strength and the courage to continue living here no matter how bad it gets. 

Remember Jesus warned, “A time is coming and in fact has come when you will be scattered, each to your own home.” (John 16:32).  And then in the next verse He promised us, “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” (vs. 33).  This peace enabled the first disciples who underwent severe persecution, to only grow stronger in their conviction.  They joyfully endured everything that they suffered for the Gospel.  If they had not, we might not have a Bible to read today.  We might not have ever heard the good news of Jesus.  We might all be swallowed up by fear and hatred, with our only hope that of an eternity in a hell that is far worse than anything we can even imagine here.

But because Jesus overcame sin, death, and the devil we can have peace, hope, and joy instead of fear.  We can spread love instead of hate.  We can live victoriously amidst despair.  From the first disciples to the last before Christ returns, the Word of God marches bravely.  Not causing destruction but rebuilding lives and hope.  Faith in the Gospel of salvation through Jesus’ suffering, death, and resurrection gives: 

1.  Grace and mercy to those who truly repent of their own sin instead of merely pointing their finger at the sin of others. 

2.  Forgiveness instead of retribution.  

3.  Acceptance instead of rejection.

4.  Purpose to lives that have been broken. 

5.  The hope for a beautiful eternity far beyond what we can even imagine.  As God’s Word promises, “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love him.”  (1 Corinthians 2:9)

So, if you have never asked Jesus to save you, what are you waiting for?  “‘In the time of my favor I heard you, and in the day of salvation I helped you.’ I tell you, now is the time of God's favor, now is the day of salvation.”  (2 Corinthians 6:2).  It is my prayer that you all come to know the peace, joy, love, and hope of heaven, amid the tribulations of this earth.  Amen.

VIDEO:  "One Day"  (Cochren & Co.)  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=So94m-Lp6Pw