Osama bin Laden is dead.
At this news, millions of Americans and Europeans feel relieved. Some feel a sense of closure. Some even rejoiced.
Yet, our western questions and worries about radical Islam remain, and perhaps the best way I can summarize all the thoughts and feelings racing through our collective mind is:
Is it safe now?
We know the answer, don’t we?
We wish it was different, but no…
If you’ll bear with me though, I’d like to remind you of a few things the Bible teaches that you might find heartening.
First of all, a reality check
We never were safe.
The world is a broken place full of broken people. Human evil has been around for millennia, and while we are not all as evil-minded as we could be (if God’s restraining hand were removed) yet we billions are capable, to one degree or another, of hate, deception, manipulation, prejudice, and cruelty. There will always be wars, Jesus told us. We will never know lasting peace and safety as long as we are its authors and arbiters.
We just don’t have it in us.
The possibility of safety
But, if you are a Christian, let me remind you that your security, your everlasting peace and safety is bound up in the love of God for you. His love and acceptance was promised to you in the gospel of Jesus. It began with the relational peace with God that Jesus purchased for you on the cross. You experience it as an inner peace from God because of your union with Christ by faith.
Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. – Romans 5:1
It’s this relational peace with God that makes it possible to be at peace in an unsafe world. Why? How? Because you, Christian, know that God is completely good, and that He exercises absolute control of this unsafe world, and that because of your union with Christ, He is lovingly devoted to using every bit of blessing and suffering for your eternal well-being.
How do you know this? – because you know the end of Romans 8 beginning at verse 28. Yes, God’s goodness and providence loom so large in your heart and mind, that you, like Job, will even say, “Though He slay me, yet will I trust Him.” (Job 13:15)
So Christian, what can you say about this day?
“The world may not be a safe place, but I am safe in Him.”
“The nations may not be at peace, but I have peace with Him.”
“My nation may not be secure, but I am at rest in Him.”
Enemies will come and go, but the Prince of Peace came, and will come…
And then, the world will be a safe place.
My soul finds rest in God alone; my salvation comes from him. – Psalm 62:1