Recently, I looked further into the Israeli & Palestinian conflict. A friend’s post prompted me to do some research into this issue, and it helped me to learn a few things that I didn’t know. For example, I learned there does appear to be a difference between the Nation of Israel (the chosen people of God) and the State of Israel (the nation & government). I could go on, but this post is not really about the all of that.
So, what’s it about?
In reflecting on the Nation of Israel, the Jews, and God’s Chosen People I started asking myself, “Why have the Jews been so heavily afflicted throughout time?” Obviously, there are many biblical references in the Old Testament to point out the relationship between God, and the Jewish people that help us better understand. But, fast forward to more recent times, and look at the Holocaust for example. Also, consider the Jewish State of Israel. Since its inception the surrounding nations & Arab people have sought to attack and destroy it. Look at the people, and groups that hate Israel, and attack it. It makes one really wonder. Why God would allow this continued treatment of them?
My question has more to do with the affliction & suffering of a people that God singled out from the rest of humanity with exceptional favor. And after thinking about it seems that God has responded! I read this passage in Romans.
20 On the contrary, who are you, O man, who answers back to God? The thing molded will not say to the molder, “Why did you make me like this,” will it? 21 Or does not the potter have a right over the clay, to make from the same lump one vessel for honorable use and another for common use? 22 What if God, although willing to demonstrate His wrath and to make His power known, endured with much patience vessels of wrath prepared for destruction?
Romans 9: 20-22
And I was wrecked! I wept.
In that moment I am humbled. I am reminded of my proper place in relation to God our Creator.
And yes, this is a tough passage! But we need to hear it. We need to be reminded of truth. We need to be reminded of who we are in relation & comparison to God Almighty. There is a tendency today in the American church both physically & corporately is elevate people, and diminish God. No, I don’t recommend that we go back to the hell & damnation preaching days of the past. However, because “All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness;” we need to make sure all of it is read, studied, communicated, and preached.
So, I may not understand these hard truths fully, but I believe God’s character. That helps me trust Him. To obey Him. Jesus demonstrates God’s goodness, and love in ways that my finite mind cannot fully understand. And that is enough to point me in the right direction. We are created by God for the glory of God! We are the creation, and He is the Creator! God is God, and I am not.