This is the End

boys fighting

by Stan Mitchell

Two boys are in a fight, rolling and tumbling over and over again. Mom intervenes, picking up each boy, and holding them apart with her hands. “Who started this fight?” she asks.

Of course you never get to the bottom of this one!

The Israelis and Arabs, so I’ve been told, have difficulties getting along. Ask an Arab why he perpetrated a violent act on Israel and he will say it’s because an Israeli did it first. The Israeli will respond he did it because of an Arabic attack. Better get comfortable. This conflict goes back at least forty centuries!

You watch a nationally televised court case. First the defendant is described as an angel from heaven by the defense, then the Devil from hell by the prosecution. Which is he? Probably neither, but the jury has the tough task of determining whether he lives or dies, is free or incarcerated.

I suppose there are always two sides of a disagreement. The writer of Proverbs acknowledges this.

“The one who states his case first seems right, until the other comes and examines him” (Proverbs 18:17, ESV).

So will we ever know who killed J.F.K.? And whether O.J. killed his wife? Was Lincoln sincere when he signed the Declaration of Emancipation? (Some feel he just wanted the support of the slave population).

Historians argue over these issues. As one suggested, “History is an argument without end” (Pieter Geyl).

Disney in the “Lion King” spoke of “the circle of life.” Maybe someone in Disneyland swallowed a vial of New Age. But they are wrong. Life is not a circle; it is a line, moving in a specific direction.

Judgment.

God has, the apostle Paul declared, “fixed a day on which he will judge the world in righteousness” (Acts 17:21).

There all the wrongs will be righted. There the judge who knows hearts will reveal everything. History will have a conclusive, definitive ending. We should live as if this was so.

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Stan Mitchell

Stan began preaching in 1976, and worked in Zimbabwe, California, Texas and Tennessee. He served as preacher with the Red Walnut Church of Christ in Bath Springs, TN. He was Professor of Bible at Freed-Hardeman University. He was married to the former Marjorie McCarthy, and has one daughter, Tracy Watts. He authored five books: The Wise Get Wiser, the Foolish More Foolish: The Book of Proverbs; Give the Winds a Mighty Voice: Our Worship in Song; Equipping the Saints for Ministry; and Will Our Faith Have Children: Developing Leadership in the Church for the Next Generation. Stan passed away 19 Feb. 2019.

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