Looking at a world of violence through the eyes of an 83 year-old
Noah’s world is described as “filled with violence.” Violence is the topic of today. If a local mosque’s statement in today’s paper is to be believed, “These events have nothing to do with Islam. Not a single person with this twisted brainwashed mentality comes from our community.”
When we began ministry in Lebanon in 1959 there were times of instability and mini-wars. But today, things are so complex and so impossible of solution. The worldwide program of some to impose “Allah’s kingdom” with its Sharia law upon all is dismissed by fearful and naive politicians as an event caused by a “handful of radical nuts” who have grievances of social injustices with the west.
But the seed of Ishmael is front and center stage, irrespective of how many of them agree or disagree with the program of “jihad.” Shiite Islam (Iran, Iraq) is vying against Sunni Islam (most Arab countries). Sunni ISIS is against all of them. Syria is being ripped apart by multiple Islamic power blocs and Lebanon is drowning in a sea of refugees. All these blocs hate western freedom of conscience and democracy. It is a frightening and violent world!
I find myself almost relieved that I am 83 years-old and closer to the coming of the Prince of Peace! Violence is reaching into the most unlikely places. A jihadist set a siege in peaceful Sydney recently that traumatized the entire nation before the death of two hostages and the jihadist. Yes, it can happen anywhere! As it was in the days of Noah, so shall it be in the days of the coming of the Son of man.
The Bible History materials for survey courses have gone to many places for which we thank God. It is such a blessing to see students finding benefit and blessing from using the materials.
However, one place I would never have expected to host the materials would have been in the remote country of Nepal! But God’s ways are amazing. The New Testament Bible History Handbook is being translated into Nepali. Even the NT DVD lectures are being recorded with voice-overs. My friends there tell me that it looks like I am actually speaking Nepali! Appearances can be very deceiving!
The Dean of Students at Sydney Bible Baptist College has resigned and moved out of the college apartment. Pray for the health of the Ringwaldts’ who have served faithfully in the college for a number of years. Thankfully the Lord has provided the Buhrens’ to take up the challenge. They were missionaries to Scotland and he also pastored a church in Australia for several years. Please pray for their move and settling into the college.
A Very Personal Prayer Request
Thankfully, the MS that destroyed most of my sight has been in remission for years. The 25% of the remaining sight in the one eye has allowed me, with technology, the opportunity to write some books, develop study materials and do other things that God put on my heart.
In recent months I felt I was again losing sight. Computer text had to be enlarged and reading the bigger text seemed harder. My ophthalmologist is concerned but is not confident what can or should be done. He has referred me to another specialist in mid-February for an opinion.
I would deeply appreciate special prayer for this matter. It means so much to me to still have God’s gift of very limited eyesight that allows me to remain productive.