I have been reading these books by Author Joel Rosenberg (The Third Target starts the series) and they have been keeping me up at night. I usually read to get calmed down and settled in, and these books have done the exact opposite – no more reading them at night, that’s for sure! He has a series that’s like a modern-day Left Behind, but it’s got ISIS and a weak president and the Muslim caliphate, and it is so real that it leaves you extremely unsettled. I finished the last book in the series last week, and then I awoke to the news about Brussels. It’s like what I’m reading at night is literally playing out in the morning on the news. I think we’ve become to numb to hearing all of these things – beheadings, bombs, refugees, we have forgotten to truly listen.
The first book I read from this author was called The Auschwitz Escape, and it was fiction, taking you through three different people’s stories that all end up at Auschwitz. It was so horrible, so utterly sickening, that it almost seemed like it had to be made up. But it wasn’t. As I read that one, I lay there in bed thinking about this Syrian refugee situation. I must admit, when I heard America was taking some of the refugees, I thought that we would end up bringing more terrorists over here. And I still think that. But the Christian part of me says, “What about these people, these Christians, or even peaceful Muslims, who are literally watching their children die, who are being beheaded just because they won’t join the caliphate, because they won’t send their children as suicide bombers.” Isn’t this just like what happened with the Jews?
Like what the famous pastor Martin Niemoller said,
First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out--
Because I was not a Socialist.
Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out--
Because I was not a Trade Unionist.
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out--
Because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.
I really wonder about this country. We have our heads buried in the sand – no, wait, they’re buried in our phones, reading on Facebook who got their hair cut and who got new furniture and who went on a vacation. A few weeks ago, I was kicked off Facebook, and even though I hardly ever get on but Saturdays, at that time, I was spending an inordinate amount of time in hospital rooms, in cancer waiting rooms, and I would jump on Facebook while waiting just to see what was going on. While I was kicked off, there was this absence of just the “I can’t get on” type of feeling. So I began jumping on to the Bible app I have on my phone – and wow, what conviction came over me. Here I sit, every day with that Bible in my purse, in my lap, and seldom do I take the time to get quiet and read and study it. See, we take it for granted – it’s just always been there and always will be.
In this first series of books I started out with, there were Muslims who had converted after Jesus appearing to them, or a friend secretly sharing with them the story of Jesus, and they were devouring the Bible – memorizing and studying it at their every opportunity. You see, these Muslims all around the world have begun learning the Quran when they were under the age of five – some will have memorized ENTIRE BOOKS by the time they are five years old. What do our children know about? SpongeBob! Who – don’t get me started – is a name caller and not a good influence, as far as I’m concerned. But that’s me.
The point is: We, Americans, are the most blessed nation in the world, yet we are the unhappiest, unhealthiest, most self-centered people on the face of the earth. Lord, help us! I would challenge you today to get your Bible out and read the story of Christ’s betrayal and crucifixion and resurrection from each of the Gospels so you get a fresh look from different perspectives. Put that phone down – turn Facebook off – and commune with our Savior. Does He not deserve just one weekend of your time? I will tell you, I challenged myself with this, and once I start reading, I can’t stop! These books have made me have a thirst to know the Bible better and to fill my spirit with its strength, more so than ever before. I pray it does the same for you and that you see Jesus as you’ve never seen Him before.
My name is Teresa Evans. I am a wife to Tom, a retired Circuit Judge, and I am a court reporter by trade, a mother by God's grace and a lover of Jesus Christ. I've grown up in a family blessed with many miracles, and have received multiple miracles myself.