An Introduction Of Blood
Some events have impacted history in such a way that the jaws of millions dropped in bewilderment and billions of people stood on the tip of their toes observing with wide eyed curiosity where such unexpected twists in history will lead the world.
World War II
Twenty one years after world war I, the world was forced to observe a worse world war II for good six years (1939-1945). Adolf Hitler was the leader of Germany and he had begun carrying out mass incarceration of Jews, starting with the invasion of Poland.
This episode cumulated with other occurrences and escalated to cause the death of six million Jews. This is not even to mention the over fifty four million additional deaths that occurred as a result of intense war, principally involving twelve countries. About forty million civilians were killed. In summary, 3% of the world’s population at that time was wiped out.
To Adolf Hitler, the Jews were an inferior race posing a threat to German racial purity and supremacy and hence loathsome to say the least. He had spelt out his goals very well and his allegiance to them was monumental. Not only he, but he gained support allegiance from many who considered losing their lives fighting for the course and the man who had their allegiance as a noble thing to do…and the world watched.
September 11, 2001. The world was shocked by news of a massive attack on the twin towers of the world trade center as two hijacked planes were purposely crased into the buildings. The USA was thrown into panic and other countries of the world stood in disbelief. Over three thousand people were killed in the encounter.
Shortly afterwards, Osama bin Laden, the leader and founder of the Al-Qaeda gave a speech justifying the act. The Al-Qaeda ideology saw the hijackers as martyrs, propagating a holy cause with the necessary tools. These men had given their allegiance to a course and to a man and for the propagation of the cause, nothing would be too much to lose…and the world watched.
[You can get a hint of these experiences from ‘ISIS’ activities in more recent times.]
We may grieve at these historical occurrences and choose to call some acts “radicalization” but things happen when people give their allegiance to something.
Where Do Believers Stand?
Three Hebrew men once stood before the ruler of one of the greatest empires the world had ever known, King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon. All affiliate leaders in the empire had been summoned to a special dedication ceremony of a new god, a nice big golden one at that, but three Hebrews did not seem cooperative with the King’s command.
They had been diligent in their services to the King, but this command of the King was something they would not obey. YAHWEH only would they serve, He alone had their allegiance.
They stared into the fiery furnace that had been heated seven times over to show them the fury of the King if they would not comply with his command. But the three Hebrew men, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego were just as composed as before. They told the King that their God was able to save them from the fiery furnance, however, even if He would choose to let them die in the fire, they would rather die and would never bow to the newly commissioned image.
Their wives and children at home would not make them change their minds. The advise of fellow invited guests or even the threat of the King would not make them reconsider. YAHWEH had their allegiance and He was the utmost priority. Not even the love of their lives would change it. They were finally thrown into the heated furnance, the heat killing some of the soldiers who threw them in…and the world watched.
Paul, formerly called Saul was a Judiast zealot who had received authority to persecute the followers of Jesus Christ. On one of his missions, he had a supernatural encounter with Lord Jesus and his world was overhauled. This highly trained intellectual with access to the comfort the Jewish society could provide and a favourable status in Israel, as well as a being citizen of Rome (the then world power), granting him favour in many areas, forsook all the privileges and followed Jesus. This was a highly criticized situation with followers of Jesus being demoted to lower social status and facing trials for blasphemy, jail sentences and even death in cruel manners.
Paul spoke and wrote about the love of God shown to him in Jesus Christ his Lord. He was certain that there was nothing conceivable that could ever separate him from the love in Jesus. He suffered many things from public beatings to ship wreaks through stonings that almost left him dead and finally, he was beheaded.
Paul had seen “something” that revolutionized his life and took his allegiance. He could never stop speaking about it because He wanted others to experience the life he had gotten to know. He lived and died for the sake of Jesus…and the world watched.
John was with Jesus throughout the period of His Ministry in flesh. He saw and heard and experienced things beyond the natural. The blind received their sight, the dead returned to life, the lame walked again, water was miraculously turned to wine, sinners’ lives were overhauled, hope was restored to many and he saw Jesus transfigured to glory inexpressible before his very eyes. Like the other believers, John had experienced the power of God in his own life and others too. He could not keep quiet about what he had experienced.
He boldly proclaimed Jesus to his world. He was persecuted and thrown into boiling oil from which he escaped death miraculously. He was exile to the island of Patmos from which he later returned to continue proclaiming Jesus Christ his Lord because nothing could take his allegiance from his Lord…and the world watched.
If men can give their allegiance to a destructive cause and pursue their mission passionately to the end of their lives, how much more should those who spread the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ be fervent in their cause.
When Jesus Christ has our allegiance, the world is yet to see the life that will be given to nations, the healing of the broken hearted and the restoration of hope to the hopeless. With a life above the corruption in this world and the miraculous signs that follow those who believe, Jesus Christ proves that He is Lord over all the elements.
The Lord has promised to build His Church which the gates of hell will not overcome. God has always raised for Himself a remnant that stand the heat of the battle and come out victorious. To them, “to live is Christ and to die is gain”.
They are a people who have no confidence in themselves, in any man or method. They have encountered the Lord and have become consumed in His Passion. He has their allegiance. They are in the battle front where the battle is the fiercest and hold on to the Master’s every word.
Neither the cares of this life or the cries of friends or foes or the risks of their own lives will make them break faith. There is a life flowing within them and faithfulness flows from it. Individually, they conquer champions, collectively they bring deliverance to nations. They fight their battles not with swords or guns or missiles but with spiritual weapons in prayer. They do not make war with humans, rather, they confront spiritual lords of wickedness.
Just like the Heavenly Father had the absolute allegiance of His only Beloved Son, Jesus Christ, the same way Lord Jesus has the allegiance of these people.
Who really has your allegiance?