Why is God still in Office?
The world we live in is a difficult and dangerous place; or so it seems to many people. We have only to open a newspaper, or switch on the radio or TV to know that the world faces many problems. Much of the world suffers from hunger. People in some countries die every day from starvation, whilst other countries throw away surplus food, and their citizens suffer from obesity. Violence is endemic, on a national and international scale. Our inner cities are ‘no go’ areas for many people. To walk down a city street, in some places, is to risk being mugged, or worse. Terrorism is a growing problem. Fanatical men and women, willing to die for their cause, seek to hold nations to ransom. Wars rage in many countries, which claim the lives of innocent men, women and children. Against such a background, is it any wonder that many people, either do not believe in God, or think that if he ever existed at all, he must now be dead! Or, that if he still exists, he has washed his hands of his creation, and cares nothing for the human race.
As students of the Bible, Christadelphians firmly believe that, far from having washed his hands of the world, God is still very much in control, and that the dire situations described above were foretold long ago; indeed they confirm that God has a plan and purpose with this earth, which is nearing its fruition. The Bible teaches that, right back at the beginning of creation, mankind turned its back on God and decided to disobey his laws and go their own way. It was that decision that has brought about the situation in which we find ourselves today. In Paul’s second letter to Timothy, chapter 3, God tells us that in the ‘last days’ perilous times will come. In the Gospel of Luke, chapter 21, Jesus tells us that, ‘nation will rise against nation’, there will be ‘great earthquakes in many places’ as well as famines and pestilences. He talks of there being ‘distress of nations’, world rulers being faced with problems which they are unable to solve, ‘men’s hearts failing them for fear because of the terrible things that are happening on the earth. Sounds familiar doesn’t it? This is the world we live in today. The teaching of the Bible is that this situation has come about because mankind has rejected God and wants nothing to do with him.
Now, if that was the whole picture, it would be a gloomy one; but it’s not. The Bible teaches that God was not willing to wash his hands of his creation. One of the best know verses in the Bible is John 3 verse 16: ‘God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in him should not perish , but have everlasting life.’ Far from washing his hands of his wayward creation, God has put in motion a rescue plan. This plan is centred on the Lord Jesus Christ. God sent his only Son to die for sinful mankind. Romans 6 verse 23 tells us that ‘the wages of sin ( sin is disobedience to god ) is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.’
Jesus died, crucified by the people of his day, but because he had never sinned, God raised him from the dead and gave him eternal life. God loves his creation and doesn’t want anyone to die, but nor does he want to live for ever with people who want nothing to do with him and who disobey his laws. God’s promise is that if we try to serve him and obey him, then in the same way that he raised Jesus from the dead, so he will raise us, to live with the Lord Jesus Christ and with God, in his Kingdom. We show our acceptance of God’s offer, and our willingness to try to serve him, by being baptised; a total immersion in water, a symbol of dying, as Jesus did, and rising to a new life; a life where we try, not to please ourselves, but rather to please God. Romans 6 also tells us that ‘we are buried with him ( Jesus Christ ) by baptism into death; that like as Christ was raised from the dead, by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection.’
From the teaching of the Bible, we believe that the time is very near when Jesus will return to this earth and set up God’s Kingdom. Why is God still in office? It is because he is a loving and merciful god, who is working out his purpose with this earth, pleading with those who will listen and accept his offer of eternal life, in a world of peace and safety.