Far from terror

Bombings in the United States, unrest in the Middle East, tornadoes, floods, and wildfires—scanning this year’s headlines, one might be tempted to lament in the words of the Psalmist, “The sorrows of death compassed me, and the floods of ungodly men made me afraid” (Psalms 18:4). Thankfully, the Bible offers inspiration to combat the fear that we are vulnerable to dangerous forces. The same psalm identifies the solution: “In my distress I called upon the Lord, and cried unto my God: he heard my voice out of his temple, and my cry came before him, even into his ears” (verse 6). Later the Psalmist rejoices, obviously relieved, “He delivered me from my strong enemy … he delivered me, because he delighted in me” (verses 17, 19).

A spiritual interpretation of the Scriptures as revealed through Christian Science identifies two facts: first, the supreme power and all-embracing love of an infinite God; and second, the supremacy of this power over any condition or circumstance confronting humanity. Indeed, Old and New Testament figures were no strangers to terrorism. Yet in case after case, they were delivered by God from the tyranny of kings and princes, religious zealots, mighty armies, beasts of all kinds, mobs, prisons, poisons, plagues, and—in the life of Christ Jesus—death itself.

All terrorism rests on one of two premises: a power called evil opposed to God or the absence of God, infinite Spirit. In the first instance, some might perceive a semblance of order in the universe, but only in conjunction with intervening evil forces, or laws of chance, that set aside this order. In the second, to an extreme materialistic viewpoint, God as Creator is nowhere to be seen: man is formed materially, is dependent on matter, and is merely a pawn in the uncontrollable contest of titanic material forces. No wonder the early Greeks, in their effort to rationalize existence, worshipped mythological gods that through human caprice and artifice arbitrarily ruled the world.

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You are not alone
November 11, 2013

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