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FIRST-PERSON: Evil is never completely unrestrained

Motherland Monument in Kyiv, Ukraine. iStock. May not be republished.

The Motherland Monument stands 203 feet tall and weighs more than 560 tons. It’s part of the National Museum of the History of Ukraine and is meant to memorialize the heroes of the USSR (Union of Soviet Socialist Republics) after World War II. For decades it has been an object of contention. Some Ukrainians have wanted the statue removed because it glorifies the Soviet Union and its Russian origins. They no longer wish to be identified with Russia; they desire to be a part of Western Europe. Today, this monument looks like an early invader or saboteur standing ready to welcome the Russian invaders. What was built to memorialize a horrible war now points to a prophetic reversal: victory for a Russian invader.

Please pray for the people of Ukraine and pray for the protection of other bordering nations. Ukraine’s defense is hopeless against the powerful military they face.

I have often asked myself how one leader can lead an entire nation to fulfill his evil intentions? How could an Adolph Hitler lead a modern nation to kill millions of people in concentration camps and invade dozens of countries resulting in at least 60 million deaths?

These are days when modern people no longer believe in evil nor do they believe there is a God who is in control and who will ultimately bring justice. We have passed the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 wake-up call where people saw evil in the modern world. The harsh unveiling of such evil has long faded away … until this week. Suddenly, the world seems back on the brink of a world war. And who knows what China plans to do next?

Evil has its day, but evil is never completely unrestrained. God keeps evil men on a short leash; in this world or the next, they will ultimately be held accountable. He will bring justice to the strongman whose dark heart leads to death and mayhem.

But even in the darkest moments, God promises to be with His people. He never leaves us or forsakes us. Even when He allows an Assyria (740 B.C.) or a Putin (2022) to reveal evil, God appeals to us to return to Him. He is our strong tower and our Mighty Fortress.

Putin represents the old repressive Russia that brought atheism, decimation and death to millions of people. His arrogance and authoritarianism are a perfect result of Jesus’ words: “A thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy.” Thank God, Jesus is the antithesis, “I have come so that you may have life and have it in abundance.”

We must tether ourselves to the sovereign God of the Bible and hold on to Him. No matter what it looks like today, the future always proves He is in control. Trust Him and pray for the people of Ukraine. Perhaps, God will save hundreds of thousands of people who are now calling out to Him.

“The LORD foils the plans of the nations; he thwarts the purposes of the peoples.” (Psalm 33:10)

“… Every knee will bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord …” (Philippians 2:11)

“A king’s heart is like channeled water in the LORD’s hand; He directs it wherever he chooses.” (Proverbs 21:1)

“Why do the nations rage and the peoples plot in vain? The kings of the earth take their stand and the rulers conspire together against the LORD and his Anointed one. … So now kings, be wise; receive instruction, you judges of the earth. Serve the LORD with reverential awe and rejoice with trembling. Pay homage to the Son or he will be angry and you will perish in your rebellion, for His anger may ignite at any moment. All who take refuge in him are happy.” (Psalm 2:1-2, 10-12)

“Let the heavens rejoice, let the earth be glad; let them say among the nations, ‘The LORD reigns!’” (1 Chronicles 16:31)

    About the Author

  • Leo Endel

    Leo Endel is executive director of the .Minnesota Wisconsin Baptist Convention.

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