This world is indeed incredible. It has places of spectacular beauty and many awe-inspiring vistas. Yet for all that commends it, it is also a very sick puppy.
We see the distress of Creation is a myriad of ways. Ever present is human neglect which shows in the littering and the pollution of the Environment. From plastic waste clogging our waterways and placing sea life at risk, to polluted air, especially in third world countries where animal dung is burnt for cooking, heat, and light.
Yet even without our help, nature can also be disruptive and destructive. Recently we saw several reasonably good seasons in Australia, followed by a few years of drought. Amid this roller coaster of seasons, there was a surge in native animal numbers, especially our beloved kangaroos. And then when the drought came millions starved to death.
Need we talk of tropical storms and blizzards, or earthquakes and volcanoes? Our planet though beautiful and treasured is marred with many rashes of both ours and nature’s invention.
Nowhere is this world more ugly, than in the sinful hearts of people especially those who deliberately choose to abandon decency. We have all seen far too much brutality and violence. We lock ourselves in our homes for fear of a microscopic virus, and that is sensible, for in a few short months it has invaded almost every country and claimed thousands of lives. Yet each year millions of people will die violent deaths in the hands of other people. There are at least thirty million people who live in slavery. This day! Some children not even ten years old, forced to work long, long hours in arduous conditions, that will see them dead with lung disease before they reach thirty years of age. Young girls not even fourteen are sex slaves in dark and brutal brothels. We could go on and on. Rape, robbery, the brutality of all sorts. Where would we stop?
Yes it is a beautiful world and it is a very sick world, the extremes are poles apart.
The Christian faith, is the light in the darkness, a hope where all hope has been lost.
In the Bible we read of this world suffering under the toil of sin, looking forward to the day of God’s deliverance when all things will be made both new and perfect. It describes this world as being in pain and groaning, some will liken this to a woman about to give birth. That which we endure is at times painful and unpleasant, yet what awaits far exceeds that which we endure for a time.
The months ahead will be difficult. In a society where we have built our understanding of life on the collection of material comforts and enjoyable experiences, many are in for a rude and frightening awakening. As we draw back from our pursuits for quarantine purposes, many people will lose income and find their debts exceed their ability to pay. Businesses will go to the wall, and isolation will simply provide long days of loneliness in which the devil will be busy. Many overcome with circumstance will take their own lives, or resort to violence and covid 19 will kill a lot of uninfected people.
It is far better to groan for God and the coming of Christ than to groan with a world that is perishing and suffer without hope.
18. For I consider the sufferings of this present age are not worthy to be compared to the intended glory which shall be revealed in us.
19. For the longing expectation of Creation anticipates the revealing of the sons of God.
20. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but by the one who subjected it in hope.
21. That Creation will be set free from the enslavement to decay, to the glorious liberty of the children of God.
22. For we know that the whole of Creation moans and endures together in pain. Romans 8:18-22