Newspaper reports of current terrorism.
NY Times: TOKYO — Japan’s prime minister expressed outrage on Sunday at an image released Saturday that appeared to show the decapitated body of one of two Japanese hostages captured by Islamic State militants, and President Obama condemned what he called a “brutal murder.”
CNN: Boko Haram strikes again: ‘They slaughter people like animals’
Kano, Nigeria (CNN)Boko Haram militants have killed scores in a series of raids on dozens of villages in northeast Nigeria’s Adamawa state, CONTINUING its violent campaign of terror in the African nation, a lawmaker said.
OT accounts of Joshua & David’s acts of war
Israel cut them down, leaving them neither survivors nor fugitives….He impaled the body of the king of Ai on a pole and left it there until evening. At sunset, Joshua ordered them to take the body from the pole and throw it down at the entrance of the city gate. And they raised a large pile of rocks over it, which remains to this day. Joshua 8:22,29
David ran and stood over him. He took hold of the Philistine’s sword and drew it from the sheath. After he killed him, he cut off his head with the sword. 1 Samuel 17:51
They look similar. Aren’t they the same thing?
Was Joshua a terrorist? Was David a terrorist?
Why were Joshua and David heroes but the ISIS fighters abominations?
Key word: Judgement. さばき God’s judgement 神のさばき
i. At the time of the flood – God used the waters 洪水のとき－神は水を用いられた
ii. At the time of the Conquest – God used the Israelites
iii. At the time of the Exile – God used the Babylonians
iv. Yet to come これから来るさばき
Joshua and David were God’s chosen vessels to carry out his divine judgement at that time in history, in that place in the world and for God’s set purposes. ジョシュアとダビデは神に選ばれた器でした。
How do we know they had such authority? Maybe they just thought they had such authority like the ISIS fighters think now.
Their authority was proved by the miracles given to them:
The miraculous crossing of the Jordan river, the fall of the walls of Jericho etc
They were not given license to take over the world.
They were called to reclaim a portion of the world (all of which belongs to God) for God and to introduce and establish God’s righteousness, and were given conditional tenancy to implement God’s laws and be His light in a fallen, sinful world.
It was never Joshua’s land, or David’s land or even Israel’s land. It was always God’s land and if the Israelites proved unfaithful, they would lose all rights to continue living and serving in His land. This almost happened at the time of the judges and it did happen at the time of the Exile.
The peoples of Canaan at the time of the Conquest came under judgement because their measure of sin was full. (Gen 15:16) カナンの人々は罪に満ちていたので、征服されたとき、さばきをうけました。
They were not a bunch of innocent farmers blown away by blood thirsty Israelites. They were societies with systematic and endemic rape, murder, and child-sacrifice.
They were judged according to the severity of their sin. Because of this, most were destroyed. Some were subdued and became vassal states (like Gibeon). In many cases, the peoples of the land were offered a chance to repent – a treaty of peace – but they refused. Those who did join Israel were embraced: according to the Mosaic law, although there were some limitations to their practices in the temple, foreigners were to be well treated.
There was a clear distinction between the righteous acts of warfare which were the means of God’s judgement, and the unrighteous and immoral acts of murder.
Joab (David’s commander) was commended for destroying an entire city of people because he was carrying out God’s judgement. Yet he was condemned for murdering people for his own personal revenge. The same distinctions were made for David. He was a hero for killing Goliath and the Philistine army who were defying God, and he was condemned and punished for murdering a Hittite named Uriah for his own personal gain.
So despite their personal sins, Joshua and David were heroes before God because they carried out God’s righteous judgement according to His specifications and program. ジョシュアとダビデは罪を犯したにもかかわらず、２人とも神の前にはヒーローなのです。なぜなら神の命令にことごとく従い神の義なるさばきを実行したからです。
The Exile was the last period of God’s judgement that we have seen on a large scale. But there will be one more time of judgement and that is the judgement to come. It is called the “great and terrible day of the Lord” because it will be GREAT and it will be TERRIBLE.
NIV: War is a terrible curse that the human race brings on itself as it seeks to possess the earth by its own unrighteous ways. But it pales before the curse that awaits all those who do not heed God’s testimony to Himself or His warnings – those who oppose the rule of God and reject His offer of grace. The God of the second Joshua (Jesus) is the God of the first Joshua also. Although now for a time He reaches out to the whole world with the gospel (and commissions His people to urgently carry His offer of peace to all nations), the sword of His judgement waits in the wings – and His second Joshua will wield it. (Rev 19:11-16) 戦争は人類が不義なやり方で地を自分のものにしようとしてもたらす悲惨な悪態です。しかし 神ご自身の証言や警告を聞かない者、神の法則に反し、神の恵みを拒否する者の悪態ほどひどくはありません。第２のジョシュア（イエス）の神は最初のジョシュアの神でもあるのです。今一時の間は、福音をもって（そして神が与える平和をすべての国に早急に携えるよう神の民を遣わし）全世界に手を差し伸べていますが、神のさばきの刀が待ち構えているのです。そして第２のジョシュアがその刀を振りかざします。（黙示録19：11-16）
Yet God’s will is that no-one should die. No-one should perish. No-one should be condemned.
John 3:16: For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
Jesus ushered in an era of God’s unprecedented love and grace.
“For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.” John 3:17
To this day, we live in the same era of God’s love and salvation.
There is no condemnation upon us or anyone who calls on the name of the Lord and we are to enjoy and share the means by which we are free from condemnation.
This is the good news of the gospel: salvation from the coming judgement, and salvation to live eternally with God. これが福音の良い知らせです：来るさばきからの救い、神と永遠に生きるための救い。
So what should our response be to the terrorists who commit such abominable acts?
I hear the words “unforgivable”, “death penalty”, “destroy”. There is a need for governments to act and protect the populations of the world and to bring the guilty to justice.
But on a personal level, we are not called to foster hatred but love and peace.
Is this a reality or is this just poetic, wishful? Our Christian brothers and sisters in Niger answer this questions and set a really good example for us.
Director of Public Relations for Christian Aid, Amie Cotton:
“45 churches were burned, four Christians were killed, 17 families lost homes completely-that report was from just one ministry,” she said, “‘Then we received [similar] word from the other ministry and came to the cumulative number of 72 churches burned and at least 10 killed. [Boko Haram] was pretty much going around torching churches and known Christian homes, and they were marking other Christians’ homes for further attack.”
How did the Christians in Niger respond? I’ll show you: Movie clip
They praised God. Not for what had happened to them but because of who God is and His promises which stand.
Jesus said that we are to pray for our enemies.
We are to love our neighbours. Two weeks ago Sandy Grant spoke on the ‘Good Samaritan’. Today’s parable is the ‘Good ISIS Soldier’.
Let’s pray for them now and take on the same love for our world and our enemies that God has.
For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 神は実にそのひとり子をお与えになったほどに、世を愛された。それは御子を信じる者がひとりとして滅びることなく、永遠の命を持つためである。
For God so loved the ISIS soldiers that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 神は実にそのひとり子をお与えになったほどに、イスラム国兵士たちを愛された。それは御子を信じる者がひとりとして滅びることなく、永遠の命を持つためである。
For God so loved the Boko Haram soldiers that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 神は実にそのひとり子をお与えになったほどに、ボコ・ハラム兵士たちを愛された。それは御子を信じる者がひとりとして滅びることなく、永遠の命を持つためである。
For God so loved you and me that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 神は実にそのひとり子をお与えになったほどに、あなたと私を愛された。それは御子を信じる者がひとりとして滅びることなく、永遠の命を持つためである。
Jesus died for ISIS soldiers, too. Let’s pray for them. Let’s pray for Muslim people around the world. Let’s pray for the gangsters and delinquents in our own country here in Japan. Let’s pray for those who mistreat us in the workplace or at school or in our neighbourhoods.
Let’s pray that we would be faithful ministers to those who would hate God and us and let’s pray that God would soften their hearts and shine the light of His Word into their hearts.