Tuesday, September 05, 2017
My son, fear the Lord and the king,
and do not join with those who do otherwise,
for disaster will arise suddenly from them,
and who knows the ruin that will
come from them both?
Those were heady days in Russia. Tsar Nicholas II had abdicated the throne in February, and now, in October, 1917, the “have nots” intended to have their way with the “haves.” The Bolsheviks got Russia out of World War I, and announced the beginning of a socialist Shangri-La. Heady days indeed.
As bad as the Tsars may have been, the new masters were far, far worse. Within months of Red October, millions of Russians stood in long lines for basic necessities. No one knows how many millions died of starvation when the collective farms failed, or how many died in labor camps and purges. And because Christians were “counter-revolutionary,” churches were confiscated or burned, pastors sent to Siberia, and believers forced underground. Utopia became a nightmare—that lasted 75 years.
History has told that same story a thousand times—for no matter who’s in charge, somebody thinks they can do better. Usually they mean better for themselves(!), but even with the best intentions, the new regime is shot through with sin just like the old one.
That cold hard fact helps us understand why Solomon sounds the alarm against over-anxious change: my son, fear the Lord and the king, and do not join with those who do otherwise; literally, don’t join with “the changers” (Heb., shōnīm). With cars and cell phones, “change” is almost always good (new and improved!). But change in God’s order of things is Red October. God created marriage; the Supreme Court joined with those who do otherwise! God sanctified the body; states legalize marijuana. God reveals His glory in creation; the “changers” replace it all with Darwin’s lie and punish anyone who dares to tug his beard. None of this will end well. As Solomon says, who knows the ruin that will come (v. 22b)?
Welcome to Christ Church this Lord’s Day. It’s a hard truth—Some were fools through their sinful ways, and because of their iniquities suffered affliction (Ps. 107:17).
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