This morning, we awoke to the news of another terrorist bombing, this time in Brussels. One news report ran the headline, Brussels on Edge after Blasts at Airport and Subway Station. I suggest these attacks put us all on edge.
How can we even begin to understand the heart of darkness that seeks to do such evil in the world? How do we have conversations with each other and our children about living in a world where these kinds of things have become the norm? When it is easier to be afraid, what then?
God is not silent in the face of such questions.
You will not fear the terror of the night,
nor the arrow that flies by day,
nor the pestilence that stalks in darkness,
nor the destruction that wastes at noonday.
There is terror and all kinds of bad stuff in this world; there always has been, and until the Lord returns, there always will be. Yet, we are called to live without fear. How does that even work?
Brothers and sisters, our peace is not rooted in the promise that these bad things will miraculously go away or that we will elect the right leaders to eradicate the threat of terror. Instead, what enables us to live without fear is the knowledge that no matter what, we are the Lord’s. Holy Week and Easter tell the story of a God who has prevailed over every enemy that seeks to do us harm, and when we are in Christ, we share in the victory, fully able to claim:
Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? As it is written,
“For your sake we are being killed all the day long;
we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.”
No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
The resurrection of Jesus Christ is a moment unlike any other is the history of the universe. While the threat of evil and death loom large in the world, the resurrection of Jesus assures us those enemies, though formidable, are defeated. They have not and they will not win. God wins; and we belong to him, so we win. Fear not!