Monday, 28 April 2014

The Special Talk

The lamb curry - Madhur Jaffrey lamb and potato Delhi-style - was a success in that both Jacks and the Captain had seconds.  The small small things served with it were: the Captain's homemade chutney, Mrs. Captain's homemade fresh tomato chutney, a raita with cucumber and balcony mint, and bananas in lemon juice.  The usual cheeseboard, ice-cream and coffee followed. (Thanks to Waitrose for its lime and coconut ice-cream and its Mango sorbet - my current favourites. And no, they are not paying me an advertising fee.  If only!)

An enjoyable evening - all very light-hearted.

Then we were were woken in the early hours by the phone - there was a rescue on, though Captain Superhero didn't have to go out on it till after lunch (leftover curry).  He chauffered me to the Hall.  It was the Special Talk yesterday.  I took a few notes, basically just jotting down the Scriptures, and am going to type them up for Audrey, who is housebound at the moment, and then if I can re-create enough of the talk (even I can't read my handwriting), I might also send Vera a copy.  She is another housebound sister.  Also Jacks said she would like a copy, as she too wonders why the earth is so full of cruelty and injustice, if there is a God who is good and all powerful...   I wondered that for many years myself.

The talk was entitled:

WHY WOULD A LOVING GOD PERMIT WICKEDNESS?  (And obviously there is a lot more to say - it was only a half hour talk - but hopefully it made some listeners think and perhaps want to study the Bible for themselves, and find the truth.)

The speaker started with Habakkuk 1:3:  "How long, O Jehovah, must I cry for help, but you do not hear?
How long must I ask for help from violence, but you do not intervene?"

Have we often felt like this?   The Speaker told us he was going to answer the question under three headings

Firstly, he was going to talk about what Jehovah feels about wickedness.
Secondly, he was going to talk about why there is wickedness, where it comes from.
Thirdly, he was going to tell us what Jehovah is going to do about it.

Then I jotted down the Scriptures we went through under each heading, as follows:

1  How does Jehovah feel?

Proverbs 6:16-19:  "There are six things that Jehovah hates; Yes, seven things that he detests:  Haughty eyes, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood,  A heart plotting wicked schemes, and feet that run quickly to evil,  A false witness who lies with every breath, And anyone sowing contentions among brothers."

The Speaker asked us to note the strong language.  Jehovah hates and detests these things.

Genesis 6:5,6:  "Consequently, Jehovah saw that man’s wickedness was great on the earth and that every inclination of the thoughts of his heart was only bad all the time.  Jehovah regretted that he had made men on the earth, and his heart was saddened."

Wickedness saddens Jehovah.

2  Why, therefore, is there wickedness?

The Speaker started off by telling us that after the terrorist destruction of the Twin Towers in New York, a leading clergyman was asked why God allowed such things to happen.  The clergyman replied, sadly, that he still did not know. The Speaker pointed out that, as the answer is in the Bible, by the end of this talk, we would know.

1 John 5:19:  "We know that we originate with God, but the whole world is lying in the power of the wicked one."

The world is currently ruled by "the wicked one".    At John 8:44, Jesus said this about him: " You are from your father the Devil, and you wish to do the desires of your father. That one was a murderer when he began, and he did not stand fast in the truth, because truth is not in him. When he speaks the lie, he speaks according to his own disposition, because he is a liar and the father of the lie."

A murderer.  And the father of the lie.    He told the first lie ever told, in Eden.   Genesis tell us that the world as created was "very good" - it was perfect. (Satan himself was a perfect angel, before he made himself Satan the Devil, by rebelling and slandering God.)   The result of this rebellion, and of our first parents following Satan?

Romans 8:22 says:   "For we know that all creation keeps on groaning together and being in pain together until now."   Jehovah knows this, and cares deeply about it.  Exodus 3:7 says:  "Jehovah added: “I have certainly seen the affliction of my people who are in Egypt, and I have heard their outcry because of those who force them to work; I well know the pains they suffer.""

3. So, therefore, what is Jehovah going to do about it?

The Speaker started by reminding us of Matthew 24, in which Jesus gave us the signs that would tell us that this wicked system of things on the earth was about to come to its end. And he drew out attention to verse 21: "for then there will be great tribulation such as has not occurred since the world’s beginning until now, no, nor will occur again."

We then read these beautiful words from Psalm 37:9-11:  "For evil men will be done away with, But those hoping in Jehovah will possess the earth.  Just a little while longer, and the wicked will be no more; You will look at where they were, And they will not be there.  But the meek will possess the earth, And they will find exquisite delight in the abundance of peace."

The Speaker drew our attention to the phrase "they will find exquisite delight in the abundance of peace".

We then read Revelation 21:4:   "And he will wipe out every tear from their eyes, and death will be no more, neither will mourning nor outcry nor pain be anymore. The former things have passed away.”

And what about any lasting pain from the horrors of this system of things, ruled by Satan?   The Speaker directed us to Isaiah 65:17:  "For look! I am creating new heavens and a new earth; And the former things will not be called to mind, Nor will they come up into the heart."

This system will be gone like a bad dream - no scars, physical, mental, emotional, will torment us then.  Jehovah can and will heal them all. If we turn to him.

The Speaker touched briefly on the reason why Jehovah has allowed this situation for 6,000 years (which, while it seems an age to us, is only a few days in God's eyes) but that subject needs another talk in itself. We are living, as it were, in a court case, in which the issues raised in Eden are settled once and for all time.  Our first parents disobedience has put a question mark against every one of us, as to whether we will willingly obey our Creator out of love.  Or not.

And the Speaker reminded us that, as Jesus foretold, a global education work is going on right now - with all the teaching based on love.

And we finished by returning to Habakkuk, chapter 3:18,19: "Yet, as for me, I will exult in Jehovah; I will be joyful in the God of my salvation.  The Sovereign Lord Jehovah is my strength; He will make my feet like those of a deer And cause me to tread on high places."

And the Speaker ended by pointing out that 111,000 congregations worldwide had heard this talk today.

No comments:

Post a Comment