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When Towers Fall

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“Yet once more,” denotes the removing of those things which can be shaken, as of created things, so that those things which cannot be shaken may remain.”Hebrews 12:27

With images of innocents flailing and falling

 from buildings and a stricken crowd running in terror from billowing death still searing in my mind – I along with countless faithful, instinctively and inwardly compelled – went to church. It was the early evening of Tuesday, September 11th, 2001. People weren’t flocking to department stores or sports arenas but to the strong tower of God’s House, as though each steeple was a lighthouse guiding us to a safe harbor. Indeed,“The name of the LORD is a strong tower; the righteous man runs into it and is safe.” Without hesitation, we went. And more occasions to seek a sure Refuge – are coming.

There isn’t a question as to whether or not America will be judged. It is being judged now. See also Romans chapter 1. See also the rise of self-glorification (an entitlement culture) and the attempts to subjugate Christianity that calls for laying aside self for the good of others and the glory of God. Add to this already abysmal list, man’s reasoning around which everything revolves instead of the Word of God which is the fixed point of the universe, profane entertainment that should jar any sensibility, the feckless “leadership” of our nation’s elected officials, the gross undervaluing of human life and the list goes on, ad nauseum

Other towers will fall. And because we know God is sovereign, who says of Himself in Isaiah 45:7, “The One forming light and creating darkness, causing well-being and creating calamity; I am the LORD who does all these” we must ask the question, why does He do these things? What is the message? Well, not only is God sovereign, He is also the sum and essence and Spirit of love so it must follow that His reasons and His message are most merciful and ones which John Piper says offer an escape from eternal calamity.

In the 13th chapter of Luke there is a discussion between Jesus and His disciples about a tower falling. It was a common belief that people who perished in disasters signified divine displeasure and therefore they must have deserved their fate. Jesus, knowing their thoughts asked “…do you suppose that those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them, were {worse} culprits than all the men who live in Jerusalem? “I tell you, no, but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.” This means that God’s purpose in suddenly taking life  is not necessarily to show a group’s greater sinfulness, rather, it is a warning to all that we should live in light of the fact that our days are numbered. Disasters are alarm bells.

For the wavering or backsliding believer, it means you still have time to make your life count for eternity anticipating the Judgment Seat of Christ whose eyes will be flames not of judgment but of evaluation as to how you spent the gift of salvation given to you. You still have time to recover your witness, to strengthen your prayer life, to see time alone with God as the indispensable condition for growth and power (instead of stockpiling canned goods horde every promise of God and hide it in your heart). You still have time to get right with the people you’ve wronged, to reconcile with an estranged family member, to commit to a gospel centered church, to store up treasures in heaven instead of that which moths corrupt and men steal, to forgive because of all you’ve been forgiven, to trust the God Who loves you rather than living one more day dominated by fear, to start loving people with the love of Christ instead of trying to change and control them, to turn from the psychology of behavioral modification to the sanctifying power of the gospel and to repent of any known sin that is keeping you from the joy of your salvation. God’s mercies are new every morning. “Forget what lies behind and press on to know God”. Today.

For the unbeliever, the greatest gift you will ever know is that right at this very moment, you are breathing. That means you still have time to flee from the wrath of God to the salvation offered by the Lamb of God. If you have rejected Christ’s righteous robe for your filthy rags of self-righteousness, you are hanging over a sulphurous and eternal abyss by a tenuous thread. The saving power of God is not far off. Call on Him. Confess you are a sinner and that you need His cleansing, restoring, joy giving gift of eternal life. Today!

The divine alarm bells of 911 are still ringing. For those who have ears to hear, they are the resounding, clarion call from a loving and sovereign God to live for a Kingdom, which cannot be shaken as the very foundations of our world begin to reel. Listen.

Today. 

Behold, this is our true state. It is this, which renders us incapable of knowing anything for certain or from being absolutely ignorant. We wander in a vast medium, always uncertain and drifting, pushed by one wind and then another. Whenever we find a point to attach and fix ourselves to, it shifts and leaves us and, if we follow it, it slips away from us and flees from us eternally. Nothing stops for us. This is our natural state, but the one most contrary to our inclination; we burn with desire to find a firm seat, and a final, constant base on which to build a tower which will lift us to the infinite; but [without God] all our foundations crack, and the earth opens up into an abyss.” – Blaise Pascal


Posted on January 17, 2013