“I have learned to be content regardless of my circumstances” (Philippians 4:11)
We are in a place many of us do not want to be in, watching our great nation deteriorate before our eyes. The future appears to be dark and foreboding. My heart breaks when I consider the number of babies who will be massacred both inside and outside of their mother’s wombs. I cringe when I think of the wicked things that will be pushed in our faces. I shiver when I consider the persecution the church is going to face. And I am appalled at the loss of our free speech.
I am reminded of when Nebuchadnezzar besieged Jerusalem and carried off the Jews to Babylon. Babylon was not the Jewish people’s home, nor was it the land God had given them. It was a pagan land with pagan leadership. It was not a place or a situation they wanted to be in. So, exactly how did the Jews survive their 70 years of captivity in this foreign land? Did God desert them in Babylon to dry up?
What happened to the Jews in their captivity can give us answers and hope to the disarray America is in now and will be in the future. No, we have not been carried into captivity in a foreign land, but we are experiencing a captivity in our own land. I believe the captivity of the Jews shows us three important lessons that can and will help us in our situation. First, God sent the Jews a message through the prophet Jeremiah. You can read it in Jeremiah 29:4-7. In this letter, God told his people to do two important things. The first was to “settle down” and live their lives as they always had. We must not give up and stop living our lives. We cannot sit down and dry up with discouragement. We always have hope in Christ. The second thing God told his people was to pray for the welfare of the city they found themselves in, because the welfare of the city would determine their own welfare. It is important that we pray for the welfare of America. Everything that happens in the future of our nation is going to affect us. Second, be like Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. They refused to bow down and worship the golden image King Nebuchadnezzar had erected. We must stay loyal and steadfast in our worship of the One True God. Do not give allegiance to any hero, politician, icon, or superstar who blasphemes or degrades God. Third, we must be like Daniel. He stayed true to God. A decree from King Darius demanded everyone pray to him only, but Daniel remained faithful to seeking his life from God and not from others. We need to be certain that we seek our life from our relationship with Christ, and not from what the world offers us.
As we walk through the future of America, keep in mind that these who remained faithful to God during their captivity in Babylon, saw His power in their lives. They saw God jump into the fiery furnace to be with the three Hebrew children. They saw God send a rescuer that shut the mouths of the wild beasts who wanted to devour Daniel. God will not leave us alone – no matter what the future holds.
One last thought to keep in mind as we walk this future journey until the Lord comes for us. The reason Israel went into captivity in the first place was because they had pushed God out and refused to repent. Let us not forget that the reason we are suffering now is because America has done the same thing.