December seventh marks the 81st anniversary of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, Oahu, Hawaii. Approximately 3,581 people were killed or wounded, 169 aircraft destroyed, and 19 ships destroyed or damaged (https://www.census.gov/history/pdf/pearl-harbor-fact-sheet-1.pdf). We must honor those who lost their lives defending our great nation! But as horrific and destructive as the attack was, the extent of the carnage was possible only because the island was unprepared for the enemy.
According to pearlharbor.org, the imminent attack appeared on newly installed radar equipment but was quickly dismissed as American aircraft (at the very least). The lack of training added to being unprepared for what was coming. Another challenge was the unpreparedness of aircraft, which were ill-parked, not fully fueled, and unarmed. As catastrophic as the December 7, 1941 events were, though, being unprepared for what will come at the end of this world will yield unimaginable physical and spiritual destruction!
In Matthew 25:1-13, Jesus used a parable to foretell how unprepared humanity will be at the end of this age before the great judgment (Matthew 25:31-46). In the parable, ten potential brides (humankind) anticipate the arrival of the bridegroom (Jesus). However, half are unprepared, missing their opportunity to attend the marriage ceremony (Revelation 19:6-10). Being prepared to make it through this life and enter the one to come requires complete devotion to God. We must stay that way, loving others and being transformed. If you’re unsure how to proceed, contact me through the Taylor Press editor or at Northview Christian Church (www.nvcc.church), and I’ll happily make time for you!
Anyway, those who belong to Christ (not just know of Him!) must also stay equipped to fend off spiritual attacks. According to the apostle Paul, we can do this by donning the complete protection God offers: His truth, righteousness (God’s standard), peace, faith, salvation, and teaching (Ephesians 6:10-18). We must pray regularly and often and be alert against subtle wickedness, such as the immoralities so prevalent today.
In summary, let’s decide to return to our God before it’s too late and then stand firm and prepared to resist what He hates. What’s next? Christmas is approaching, and some of us will celebrate the birth of One who suffered on our behalf. So, let’s consider that it is The Sufferer’s Holiday.
Blessings and peace,
Dr. Ron Braley,
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