The Rev. Dan Puckett: Got questions about the future?Published 8:27pm Thursday, July 8, 2010
Economic problems, ecological disasters, national dilemmas and international confusion seem to be running amok right now. Even if one is not a devout believer in almighty God, one might be looking up, questioning divine authority about what lies ahead.
There is biblical precedent for looking up to God in times of trial and uncertainty. One such incident was in the days of Jeremiah the prophet.
Jeremiah was God’s man commissioned to preach God’s words to the nation of Judah during their moral declension. In the Old Testament book of Jeremiah12, Jeremiah had some questions and demands for God.
Jeremiah was careful as he approached God. In verse 1, he said, “You are always righteous, O Lord, when I bring a case before you.” Then Jeremiah proceeded to question God’s justice. He wanted to know why the wicked prosper and why the faithless live at ease. Jeremiah further lamented that the people talked about God but their hearts were far from him (Jeremiah 12:2).
Jeremiah concluded that God should judge the wicked. Jeremiah’s bottom line, in verse 3, was, “Drag them off like sheep to be butchered!”
Before we think Jeremiah was too extreme, we have to confess that we, too, have thought if God would just clear out the wicked people, then we would all be better off.
God answered Jeremiah in verse 5: “If you have raced with men on foot and they have worn you out, how can you compete with horses? If you stumble in safe country, how will you manage in the thickets by the Jordan?”
God’s answer, in essence, was, “If you think it is bad now, hang on, more troubled times are coming.”
God has never allowed His faithful children to be isolated on an island while the rest of the world went awry. God’s people are carried along with the tide and often are blamed for society’s woes and persecuted by the godless.
What about the future? It may get worse.
The role of the godly is to live righteously, repent of all known wrongs, pray fervently, and speak the words and ways of God to a people who seem not to have an ear for it.
God’s grace is sufficient for every coming trial. We are to be lights in a dark world. God will not speak in thunder or write across the sky; it is the Christ-followers who are His spokespeople in these days. So, we must live right and reflect properly who God is and what He has done for us.
Everybody’s got questions about the future. We must seek God for the answers.
The Rev. Dan Puckett is a minister with Life Action Ministries.