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KNOWLEDGE AND SORROW, FREEDOM and HOPE


For in much wisdom is much grief, and he who increases knowledge increases sorrow.”

Ecclesiastes 1:18

Since New Testament times, the church has been facing a double distress. On the one hand, the church has had to contend with government systems hostile to our faith. This is not controversial; even a cursory examination of church history reveals that the church’s chief antagonist and persecutor in the world has been human governments. On the other hand, the church has had to deal with corruption and opposition within its own ranks. Paul’s warning to the Ephesian elders is as sobering as it is tragic (Acts 20:29). Indeed, even in Paul’s day one of the perils he faced was that of false brethren (2 Corinthians 11:26). When we consider our recent history through the lens of Scripture, in our province and in our local church, we are not initially comforted but grieved. We see evil men and imposters growing worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived, just as Paul predicted (2 Timothy 3:13). There are times when a Christian could wish he were as ignorant and undiscerning as those outside of Christ. Completely without understanding, the unregenerate fixate on the mundane affairs of life, oblivious to the schemes of wicked men and fallen angels. In the short term, ignorance is bliss. The mature follower of Jesus, however, sees the bigger picture. He tests all things and holds fast to the truth (1 Thessalonians 5:21). He recognizes that the entire world is in the sway of the wicked one (1 John 5:19). Even though his heart is broken by the apparently unchecked evil and corruption he sees in the world, the mature Christian is set free from hopelessness and despair, knowing that the present state of affairs will not persist forever. He knows that Christ will return and judge the world in righteousness (Revelation 19:11). The wicked will be exposed for who they are and suffer the consequences for what they have done (Acts 17:31). The righteous shall shine like the stars in the heavens (Daniel 12:3), enjoying their rewards for faithfulness in that blessed place the Lord has gone to prepare for us (John 14:1-3). Let us fix our eyes on the Truth incarnate (John 14:6), receive His peace (John 14:27), holding fast to our blessed hope (Titus 2:13).

God bless you,

Pastor John

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