Woke up this morning to a television filled with news about earthquakes and tsunamis. Homes floating across fields. Ships floating down roads. Hundreds dead. Lots of thoughts go through my mind — The day after Christmas 2004, Cyclone Nargis, Walking through Tokyo International Airport a week ago, Some friends in Hawaii, Some friends headed to Hawaii, and even a RV in State College touting the end of the world.
But here is the thought that sticks with me, “Sin is so pervasively devastating.”
Stop right there — no I do NOT believe that God did this because of the sin of the Japanese people.
But from a theological world-view sin has had a creation-breaking effect on the world. In Romans 8 Paul writes these words,
18 I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us. 19 For the creation waits in eager expectation for the children of God to be revealed. 20 For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope 21 that[h] the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the freedom and glory of the children of God. 22 We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time.
All Creation subjected to frustration, in bondage to decay, groaning in anticipation of a liberation and redemption. Tsunamis and earthquakes were not part of the original plan, but one day there will be a new heaven and a new earth. Tsunami-free. Earthquake-less.
Maybe you read this and you think I’m taking stuff a bit too literal? That’s okay. I’ll take my hope any day, it walks me through the sufferings of this present day, looking forward to glory. Meanwhile, I will strive to live out the axiom of the apostle Paul who said, “For me to live is Christ and to die is gain.”