|From the Pastors Desk|
|Tabernacle||The War of Time||Lesson 57|
Manchaca Bible Fellowship
|25 April 2004||Bible Lessons
We have recently passed the one year mark of the Iraq war. American soldiers are dying. Iraqis are dying and many others are also losing their lives.
It is not my place, nor is the pulpit the place to advance or condemn the war. However, when our soldiers are putting their lives on the line, and some others are using the war for political purpose, it is my place to try to give some perspective to these events, so that, as Christians, we will not be blinded to reality.
There are two wars raging at the same time. One has been in operation for many years, the other is recent and obvious, but the purpose is not seen by many. Another war is raging alongside the obvious war, and is unseen by most.
First a little perspective.
In no way, do I think these deaths are insignificant!! Even one death is two too many. However, as wars go, this is one of the lowest causality wars in history, that has extended for a year or more.
One way of determining what goals people think are important, is to see what price they are willing to pay to achieve those goals. The question must be raised, "Do we feel it is important to produce a free and democratic Iraq?" If so, what price are we willing to pay to achieve that goal?
Let me compare the price, in loss of life, to bring freedom to Iraq, to another area that also requires the cost of life. We think VERY little about this "other" area.
In Texas, in 2000, there were 3,769 traffic deaths
Therefore, using the criteria of value = cost willing to be paid, we would have to conclude, that we feel the freedom to drive in Texas is well worth the loss of 3,769 lives.
Even more staggering, is that 50% (1,884) of those traffic deaths in Texas in 2000 were caused by "impaired" drivers (code word for alcohol or drug related).
Those are the value/cost figures just for Texas, and for only one year. We feel that the freedom to drive in Texas is worth 3,769 lives for one year. Those figures are about the same year after year.
We also seem to feel that the freedom to drive drunk is worth 1,884 lives a year. Year after year, year after year, this slaughter goes on!!! Multiply that time 5 years or 10 or 20 years and you have a quite a few lives.
YET, I don't see many people getting up tight about that loss of life. These are also United State's citizens.
In the USA, in 2002, there were 43,000 traffic deaths! 41% of those were alcohol or drug related (17,766). Not only did the freedom to drive in the USA cost 43,000 lives in one year, that freedom to drive in the USA came at a dollar cost of 231 billion or $820 per every person in the USA, AND 41+% of that 231 billion was directly due to alcohol or drugs.
I don't see many of our fine upstanding politicians going on talk show, decrying those deaths and that cost. Any loss of life is a high price to pay, BUT somewhere, we need a little balance and at least a bit of consistency.
IF it is really the cost of US lives that the "thundering herd", known as politicians and commentators, are concerned about, THEN let's hear their voices about the 17,776 alcohol and drug related deaths EVERY year in America.
No, these "talking heads" do not have, as their main concern, the deaths of our soldiers, instead, they see an opportunity to advance their personal status and agenda, at the expense of our soldiers in their deaths. This misuse of these fact is at the very least disrespectful to our fine soldiers who have given their lives, and to those who put their lives on the line every hour of every day. That type of action is not too far from the same goal of terrorists whether in Iraq, the church, or politics.
I am relatively certain, most these of these ARE concerned with the death of Americans, any normal human being would. However, their main attention is not on the deaths of Americans, but the advancement of themselves.
Along side this war in Iraq, is "another" war that most Christians are not willing to pay the needed price to execute. There is no way that I can even give an overview of this second war in a short time, but let me mention just a few things about this "other" war, so we don't forget and get caught in the cross fire of enemy.
As our study continues, we will see more and more about this "other" war and some of the "side" battles that are now being fought and must yet be fought in the future.
The central theater of this "other" war is the same area as the "present" war. The "other" war is a war described in the Bible. Look at the Biblical setting of the "other" war, and note the locations of Babylon, Ur, Garden of Eden, Haran, Promised Land, etc.
Now compare the following map and see the theater of the "present" war, and note the location of Baghdad, Basra, Kuwait, etc. Then compare that "theater" with the theater of the "other" future war.
(maps © by Rose Publishing - by permission)
Look at where this battle began, and how it has and always will come back to it's roots.
Genesis 2:8 The LORD God planted a garden eastward in Eden, and there He put the man whom He had formed. 9 And out of the ground the LORD God made every tree grow that is pleasant to the sight and good for food. The tree of life was also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. 10 Now a river went out of Eden to water the garden, and from there it parted and became four riverheads… …14 The name of the third river is Hiddekel; it is the one which goes toward the east of Assyria. The fourth river is the Euphrates.
Genesis 11:1 Now the whole earth had one language and one speech. 2 And it came to pass, as they journeyed from the east, that they found a plain in the land of Shinar, and they dwelt there. 3 Then they said to one another, "Come, let us make bricks and bake them thoroughly." They had brick for stone, and they had asphalt for mortar. 4 And they said, "Come, let us build ourselves a city, and a tower whose top is in the heavens; let us make a name for ourselves, lest we be scattered abroad over the face of the whole earth." 5 But the LORD came down to see the city and the tower which the sons of men had built. 6 And the LORD said, "Indeed the people are one and they all have one language, and this is what they begin to do; now nothing that they propose to do will be withheld from them. 7 "Come, let Us go down and there confuse their language, that they may not understand one another's speech." 8 So the LORD scattered them abroad from there over the face of all the earth, and they ceased building the city. 9 Therefore its name is called Babel, because there the LORD confused the language of all the earth; and from there the LORD scattered them abroad over the face of all the earth.
Genesis 11:31 And Terah took his son Abram and his grandson Lot, the son of Haran, and his daughter-in-law Sarai, his son Abram's wife, and they went out with them from Ur of the Chaldeans to go to the land of Canaan; and they came to Haran and dwelt there. 32 So the days of Terah were two hundred and five years, and Terah died in Haran. 12:1 Now the LORD had said to Abram: "Get out of your country, from your kindred and from your father's house, to a land that I will show you. 2 I will make you a great nation; I will bless you and make your name great; and you shall be a blessing. 3 I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who curses you; and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed."
Revelation 18:2 And he cried mightily with a loud voice, saying, "Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and has become a habitation of demons, a prison for every foul spirit, and a cage for every unclean and hated bird! 3 "For all the nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth have become rich through the abundance of her luxury."… …21 Then a mighty angel took up a stone like a great millstone and threw it into the sea, saying, "Thus with violence the great city Babylon shall be thrown down, and shall not be found anymore.
Zechariah 4:6 So he answered and said to me: "This is the word of the LORD to Zerubbabel: 'Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit,' says the LORD of hosts.
The things presented in this series, surrounding the Tabernacle and Israel in the Wilderness, are absolutely vital to the well being of ourselves, our church and our nation, not because I am presenting them, BUT because they are the Word of God.
I do not want anything, I do, to prevent the hearing and accepting of these Biblical facts. It has been brought to my attention that the title of the series, "The Tabernacle" is a distraction to some, because we are not studying the structure of the Tabernacle, itself.
To eliminate such a distraction, I am going to "drop" the title. The teaching will not change. It simply will not be under a series title.
As some of you may recall, those who have endured long enough, at the start of this series, we took a quick tour of the Tabernacle structure, itself, by means of overheads. For the remainder of this service, we are going to take another tour of the that structure by means of video.
|© Clyde White, Austin TX, 2004|