(See https://committedtotruth.wordpress.com/2013/04/23/why-the-boston-bombers-succeeded/, an analysis by Stratfor, reprinted with permission in my previous post).
Yes, they succeeded.
In spite of the facts that only three deaths occurred, one of the bombers is dead and the other is in custody (and talking), they succeeded.
- They succeeded in grabbing the non-stop attention of the American (and world) media for several days.
- They succeeded in drawing hundreds (thousands?) of law-enforcement officers into the hunt for them.
- They succeeded in causing other cities to heighten security measures.
- They succeeded in making people more fearful for their safety.
- They also likely succeeded in demonstrating that lone-wolf terrorists who are willing to execute “small” attacks can likely pull them off.
- They also demonstrated that it is possible for lone-wolf terrorists to create and place bombs – and quite possibly (with better post explosion planning) escape to safety in a foreign terrorist haven.
In short, they succeeded in all of their aims except one – getting away with it.
What can we learn from this from a Christian perspective?
The prophets are abundantly clear that God can use evil people to carry out His purposes. For example, in speaking of Assyria’s destruction of the Northern Kingdom of Israel, Isaiah said:
Ah, Assyria, the rod of my anger; the staff in their hands is my fury! (6) Against a godless nation I send him and against the people of my wrath I command him, to take spoil and seize plunder, and to tread them down like the mire of the streets. (7) But he does not so intend, and his heart does not so think; but it is in his heart to destroy, and to cut off nations not a few; (8) for he says: “Are not my commanders all kings? (9) Is not Calno like Carchemish? Is not Hamath like Arpad? Is not Samaria like Damascus?(10) As my hand has reached to the kingdoms of the idols, whose carved images were greater than those of Jerusalem and Samaria, (11) shall I not do to Jerusalem and her idols as I have done to Samaria and her images?”
(12) When the Lord has finished all his work on Mount Zion and on Jerusalem, he will punish the speech of the arrogant heart of the king of Assyria and the boastful look in his eyes. (Isaiah 10:5-12, ESV)
Indeed, you can read of how God punished this arrogant king whom He used to bring Israel into captivity by reading Isaiah, chapters 36 & 37.
Yet, he used evil nations to punish his own people, as Habakkuk (in 1:13) asks, “Why do you idly look at traitors and remain silent when the wicked swallow up the man more righteous than he?” Habakkuk asked this when God told him what he was doing about Judah’s own wickedness, something that God warned Habakkuk that when He told him, he would not believe it (1:5-11).
Over and over, the prophets tell us that God rules in the affairs of men, that He raises up kingdoms and brings them down. When any nation or civilization gets too wicked, God will bring it to its knees.
What makes us think that our nation and civilization are exempt from God’s judgment?
Repeatedly we have been warned – and we turn to God in prayer. But in a few days or weeks we return to what has become our usual way of ignoring Him – or worse.
We push Him out of our lives – and then wonder where He was when disaster strikes!
Get the book The Harbinger: The Ancient Mystery That Holds the Secret of America’s Future by Jonathan Cahn ($9.99 in paperback or $8.50 at Amazon). It links the details of Isaiah 9:10 to the 9/11/2001 wake-up call to our nation. Of course, Isaiah was talking about Israel’s response to a wake-up call to them (see 2 Kings 15:17-22). They responded by declaring they would rebuild better than before (Isaiah 9:10), only to be scrubbed from existence as a nation a generation (or less) later.
Is that what is in store for our nation?
I pray that it is not. But do not think that we are invincible. We are not. God still rules – and sin is still a reproach to any people. It may be that God will use the Jihadists, evil as they are, to bring us to our knees – if we do not first go to our knees in repentance as a nation and make it more than temporary.
Filed under: Uncategorized