Oaklea Chapel

For where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them - Matthew 18:20
REMEMBRANCE "WAR & PEACE" by Bob Watson (08 November 2005)

“War” - the word has a dreadful sound about it. Dark clouds gather around it, and with them the sights and sounds of sorrow and death, the unsettling of the world, the taking away of songs of joy and the calm sweet sense of peace.

There are people who have lived through two World Wars. Many have suffered great personal loss. Some have given a big part of their lives in the service of “King & Country”. Millions, civilians as well as combatants, have died violently. Some of us as school children remember all too vividly the sound of the Bombers overhead, the screech of the Bombs, the sound of responding gunfire, the fires, the death and destruction in our streets and we would not want to see the like again.

Tolstoy, the great Russian writer saw enough of war at the siege of Sebastopol in 1855 and later wrote his great classic “War and Peace”, in which he demonstrates the tragedy, futility and folly of war. Man’s inhumanity to man, whether the cause be Vanity leading to the private duel, or Insanity and the insane thirst for power leading to the conflict of nations and the conflagration of the world.

War is a confession and an expression of man’s failure, a failure to live harmoniously with his fellow men on the face of the earth. Even the Old Testament is full of the “Wars of the Lord”. Abraham pursuing the four kings, Moses engaging Amalek, Joshua conquering the Promised Land, Gideon defending his people, David putting the Lord’s enemies to flight. All these would tell us that evil men have often to be pursued, punished and put out of the way, in order that others may be able to live their lives without violent interference or harassment.

In the secular world it is the responsibility of government to ensure the peace and security of the individual as well as the stability and liberty of the nation. This Nation has had to defend these concepts on more than one occasion, and the enjoyment of them, which we have today, is in large measure due to the noble sacrifice of those we gratefully honour & remember at this time.

What of the future? Our Lord’s words in Matthew 24:6f remind us that until the day when His Kingdom of Peace and Righteousness is set up on the Earth we shall continue to hear of “wars and rumours of wars”.

The world has yet to see its greatest Battle – The Battle of Armageddon, when the Anti-Christ, the last great World dictator, and the “Kings of the Earth” shall be gathered together in the valley of Jezreel before Mt. Megiddo to make war with the Lord and His people (see Revelation chapters 19 & 20). A dreadful scene is envisaged, but the Lord shall overthrow them and the Victory shall be His. Hence, if we are the Lord’s, and we hear of “Wars and Rumours of Wars”, of Civil strife, of revolution, of threatened invasion, of a Nuclear holocaust, we need not despair. The Lord said to His disciples “See that ye be not troubled” Matthew 24:6. The future is ultimately not in the hands of men but in the Hands of our blessed Lord.

Our Blessed Lord will one day make all wars to cease. There shall indeed be Peace on Earth because He who is the Prince of Peace will reign over the whole Earth.

Peace, even now, is the happy experience of all who have acknowledged, or will acknowledge Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Saviour.
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