Our nation is politically charged in the midst of an election season, ramped terrorism, and internal conflict. Some are crying, “War!” Others cry out, “Peace!” I hear Christians crying both.
I must think long and hard about these words from God, that there is a time of war, and a time of peace (Ecclesiastes 3:3). What does this mean? Let’s not try to be poetic and make excuses out of our own discomfort; these are God’s words. Several times in Scripture God declared war against the enemies of God, instructing His people to take up arms. Yet we know that in this New Testament era, we have to think carefully before we cry for war because we join God in longing for every tribe, tongue, and nation to recognize that Jesus is Lord and be saved. War? We abhor the thought. And Jesus calls us to turn the other cheek. So which is it, a time of war or a time of peace?
The answer to the question belongs to God. When our hearts burn in anger, that’s definitely the time to sit down and be quiet; too many people talking in the public arena are speaking out of anger, and they’re fueling the crowd to want to start a war out of hatred and vengeance. And likewise, when our hearts are feeling weak, frightened, and tempted to make cowardly compromises, that is not the time to go to the negotiating table to discuss a truce.
God declares each season, and when He calls us to our season we must carry it out in righteousness. Christian brothers and sisters, let us have no hatred that leads to a war-mongering heart, yet let our desire for restoration and healing be rooted not in fear but in righteousness alone.