The Preacher Says....  
  Answer to the World's Dilemma  
  Rev. 21. 1 - 7

It’s 6,000 years gone since man was given the command to be fruitful, multiply and replenish the earth. A view of the history of mankind proves disappointing. Following the set back of the flood, man once again replenished the earth to a point when today population experts worry. Lest we forget, God said early in man’s history, As truly as I live, all the earth will be filled with the glory of the Lord (Num 14. 21). Any evidence of progress toward filling the earth with God’s glory is singularly absent. History is witness to the rise and fall of one despot after another. They may rise to power on lofty principles, but their true nature is revealed when corruption comes. Even King Solomon was not exempt.

Man prospers only during those periods when he has been protected from the caprice of human rulership. That is why we’re proud of our government of laws, not men. But good government, does not necessarily produce good subjects. On the whole they are not good. Too many are corrupt. They rob, steal, murder, cheat, oppress and neglect. For many life is a whirling dance–without purpose– where men rush about to gratify the flesh. Sad to say, man prospers only when the human element is removed. This fact is a broad hint that man’s salvation must be found elsewhere. In this and any age good government is not the answer to the world’s dilemma. A government of laws is not sufficient to hold back the floodgate. ‘Man has it within his power to destroy himself’. We’ve said this so often it is almost trite. The Bomb, germ and gas warfare–think of what might happen accidentally. Ideals ring hollow in the face of destruction. When summit conferences fail, naked emotions are revealed. Think of what could happen in a fit of national anger or loss of control. Is there an answer? Human reason says to look to God’s purpose with His earth.

You know, it doesn’t really matter about the world’s dilemma. It’s only incidental to God’s purpose–a simple one: that all the earth shall be filled with the glory of God (Num 14.21) When God called Abram from Ur of the Chaldees to go to a land that He would show him; it was a call that will ultimately end in a glorified world that he, with all others who are called, chosen and faithful, will inhabit. God’s promise to Abraham and the fathers will climax on a day to come, a day appointed by God in which He will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom He hath ordained: whereof he has given assurance unto all men in that He has raised him from the dead (Acts 17. 31). The fate of the nations is irrevocably tied up with Israel, the nation He called out for His name ages ago. Though I make a full end of all nations, yet will I not make a full end of thee, so spoke God through the prophet Jeremiah (Jer. 30. 11). The answer to the world’s dilemma must await the time of ‘the last days’ when–finally--after far reaching tribulation–many nations shall come and say, come, and let us go up unto the mountain of the Lord, and to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for the law shall go forth of Zion, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem. (Micah 4.2)

No matter how absurd and far fetched it may seem to us, God’s plan is to re-establish the kingdom of Israel in the promised land and fulfill the Jewish hope for their longed for Messiah. The answer to the anxious question asked by the disciples as they gathered together after his ascension, Lord, wilt thou at this time restore the kingdom to Israel? (Acts 1. 6) was that it was not for them to know the time or the seasons–only the Father knows. When it happens, when Christ returns to bring order out of chaos, we’ll have the answer to the world’s dilemma. Christ will rule with a rod of iron and will literally and physically point out the called, chosen and faithful.

Our hope depends on becoming his subjects in this kingdom. Stated simply, the present world is and has been a proving ground for us. The big question is, who will be among the called, chosen and faithful?

We love life; life is sweet, and we’re moved to inquire with Job, if a man die, shall he live again? Yes. He will live again if he is among the called, chosen and faithful. God is trying us; He tests us. This has been true since Adam. But we can’t just take the grand view, by merely confessing that we’re strangers and pilgrims. If we have taken the first step by acknowledging our discipleship, then taken the next, by symbolically starting a new life, it becomes obligatory to work out our salvation with trembling and fear. What does God require of us? We recoil at receiving the grace of God in vain if we, having put our hand to the plow look back, and find ourselves caught up in that whirlwind of a death dance . Our duty is to help those about us who are in need–to serve. We have to be active in our belief and be ready to tell of the gospel–the good news of the kingdom of God-- to all who ask. This work is a challenge, one that Christ commanded we carry out. When you honor this purpose in your life, action gives you reason to boldly approach the throne of grace, and count yourself among the called, chosen and faithful.

Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly of heart; and ye shall find rest unto your souls (Mat 11. 29)