Nineteen years ago, nineteen men hijacked four airplanes to carry out the deadliest terror attack on U.S. soil in a mission that was orchestrated by al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden. https://www.newsweek.com/9-11-timeline-how-september-11-attacks-unfolded-world-trade-center-pentagon-flight-93-1531072
After working the night shift, I awakened on 9/11/2001 in time to watch the live coverage of the plane hitting the South Tower at the World Trade Center. Residing in New Jersey, I was only one hour from New York City, when the most sinister terrorist attack on the United States reached completion. The grief that gripped my body, soul, and mind forced uncontrollable sobs of anguish as I watched the horror of the hatred that exists in humanity for each other and for God.
In Genesis chapter 4, we are given a historical account of the first act of violence, One day Cain suggested to his brother, “Let’s go out into the fields.” And while they were in the field, Cain attacked his brother, Abel, and killed him. Genesis 4:8
The Bible provides us with the story of the first premeditated murder of brother against brother. Uncontrollable jealousy and anger provided the emotional response that resulted in Adam and Eve’s oldest son killing his younger brother. Because of pride, Cain felt entitled in his actions to end the life of his brother, Abel, and walked away as if nothing had happened. Read Genesis 4.
Even under perfect conditions, sin causes us to desire more than God has given to us. From the biblical description, the Garden of Eden was paradise, a home filled with aesthetic beauty created for the first married couple, and their children. The Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil was the test for obedience, and to prove that humanity received free will of choice to serve God or not to serve Him.
The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, but God did say, “You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.'” Genesis 2:2-3. God’s promises cannot fail. When He promised that death would occur because of the sin of disobedience, we are still reaping the devastation of sin, the senseless loss of life.
Currently, we are in an ongoing battle with an invisible enemy; the formidable COVID-19 virus is still wreaking havoc on humanity: Worldwide Total cases: 28.2M Recovered 19M Deaths 910K. It is not our fault that the Coronavirus is our number one health threat. But we are accountable for the failure to heed the warnings or to use our best defenses of social distancing and wearing face masks that would curtail COVID’s savagery on human life.
Did God create human beings in His image just to get rid of us? Absolutely not!
God is loving, and because He freely extends grace and mercy, we are forewarned of the consequences of our disobedient choices. No one is compelled to sin. It is a conscientious decision to act on our desires and engage in risky behaviors. Unfortunately, when we seek pleasure or to do harm based on emotions, all rational thought processes cease. Pride causes us to rely on our wit, charm, knowledge, and prior experience to develop schemes that we think will guarantee the avoidance of negative consequences.
The desire to please self is all-consuming; pride takes over, and we fail to remember that every decision renders negative consequences, or positive outcomes that also affect others. Many innocent victims have lost their lives or suffer because of the selfish desires and actions of disobedient risk-takers, and persons consumed with hate.
For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus, our Lord. Romans 6:23
It was a willful sin that resulted in the death of the perfect Son of God, Jesus Christ. What a powerful commitment, to die to save humanity. Think about Jesus telling God that He would die for us and provide Redemption so we would not have to die the final death. The story gets better. God accepted Jesus’ gift because:
On the first day of the week, very early in the morning, the women took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb. 2 They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, 3 but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. 4 While they were wondering about this, suddenly two men in clothes that gleamed like lightning stood beside them. 5 In their fright, the women bowed down with their faces to the ground, but the men said to them, “Why do you look for the living among the dead? 6 He is not here; he has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee: 7 ‘The Son of Man must be delivered over to the hands of sinners, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.'” 8 Then they remembered his words. Luke 24:1-8
We have this hope: Jesus Christ, the Son of God, will return for those who are faithful and obedient.
“Behold, I am coming soon, and My reward is with Me, to give to each one according to what he has done. 13 I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End.”… Revelation 22:12-13
Although our current situation looks bleak, we must not give up hope or the opportunity to have eternal life. We have a Spiritual team, God the Father, Jesus Christ, His Son, and our Comforter, the Holy Spirit, who are just a prayer away.
“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble (tests, trials, and sorrows). But take heart! I have overcome the world.” John 16:33
We Will Never Forget 9/11!
Nor should we ever forget: Jesus Christ’s sacrificial gift of His life; the life that provides the Plan of Salvation, which gives us eternal life, if we so choose.
I am he that lives, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive forevermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death. Revelation 1:18
Amen, it is so!
Bible Readings: Revelation 21-22
God, we pray for the survivors of 9/11 and the families and friends of those impacted by the Coronavirus. We pray for those who have given up hope and feel that life is not worth living. We ask you to provide healing and comfort according to your will. As we prepare for Jesus’ Second Coming, we need your protection and guidance to live as faithful and obedient servants. Thank you for hearing and answering our prayer that we ask in the Worthy Name of your Son, Jesus Christ. Amen.
© Sonya Johnson Ruiz 2020, No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted for commercial purposes without the author’s written permission.