Another terrorists attack, this time in Nice, France, dominated the news yesterday. Some sick soul used a large truck to plow through a crowd of tourists killing (at last count) 77 innocent people. What has this world come to? It seems that nobody is safe anywhere any more. Let me try to put this latest terrorist attack in perspective, from a purely prophetic viewpoint. What does the Bible say that helps us understand such an awful event?
Without Natural Affection
There is an important, quite remarkable prophecy found in II Timothy 3:3, where the Apostle Paul describes the conditions on earth in the "last days". He begins by saying: This know also, that in the last days perilous times will come". The choice of the word "perilous" (dangerous) is a good way to picture terrorism. One phrase on that list that really stands out is: "without natural affection". This might be applied to sexually deviant behavior, but certainly it is applicable to TERRORISM as well. Is there anybody who would disagree with the assessment that these radical ISIS killers are "without natural affection"? The list also contains the word "fierce". All of these prophetic expressions (perilous, fierce, without natural affection) find their fulfillment in the twisted hearts of the Islamic terrorists. How amazingly accurate is the Word of God in picturing the conditions on earth at the end of this age!
Consider the Words of Jesus
And then there are the words of Jesus, in His Olivet Discourse. He Himself gave us an amazing prophecy about the last days. He said: "Because iniquity shall abound, the love of many will grow cold". I can't think of anything more cold-hearted than using a truck to brutally run over a crowd of innocent vacationers in the name of "religion". Jesus is right on target here. He prophesies that right before His return, our world would be filled with TERRORISM. The Islamic radical extremists foment hatred, and the senseless killing of innocent people in order to advance their cause. To say that the "love of many will grow cold" is a polite way of describing the absolute ruthlessness and inhumanity of these modern day terrorists.
And finally, we have yet another prophecy made by Christ in Luke 21:26, "men's hearts failing them from fear, and the expectation of those things that are coming on the earth". We all know that the motive of terrorism is to strike fear in people, and they certainly are doing a good job at it. The World Trade Center, Paris, San Bernadino, Istanbul, Nice. Truly we live in fearful times! And yet, God reminds us, as Christians, of this truth: "God has not given us the spirit of fear, but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind".
The Good News
All I can say is that I thank God every day that I am a Christian, motivated by the love of Jesus! By His grace, I am not blinded by hatred so strong that I resort to the brutal killing of others. The big difference between Biblical Christianity and radical Islamic extremism is this: one is based on love, the other on hate. In the end, love wins, because Christ wins! God is love, and Christ, God's love gift to the world, will return to earth and straighten this mess out. The One who "loved us and gave Himself for us" is coming back again, and the whole world will realize that God's love triumphs over evil.