Lessons from 9/11
There’s a saying that permeated yesterday - it says ‘Never Forget’. But as I pondered on what that meant, I was at a loss. Never forget what, exactly?
Never forget the lives lost?
Never forget the bravery of those on flight 93, or the firefighters running up the towers?
Never forget that terrorism exists & must be combatted?
Never forget the horror that day held?
Never forget, so that the perpetrators will pay?
Never forget the widows & widowers that were made that day?
Never forget what we felt watching the towers fall to the ground?
Never forget what exactly? And better yet, what is the purpose of remembrance? I’m not saying that we SHOULD forget and that there’s not a purpose to remember, I’m just asking… Sometimes we get caught up in quaint jingles that hold little meaning and it prevents us from analyzing what took place and how we should respond.
Yesterday marked 20 years since the remarkable events of Sept. 11, 2001. Many of us remember what happened on that day - in fact, if you were probably a teen or older, most everyone will remember that day to a degree. But many of those in this building today weren’t even alive when the towers came down.
But whether you were alive or not, I believe that this message today can benefit you, and I believe we all can learn from what God has given to us today.
Today we’re going to remember for a moment what happened 20 years ago - the attacks on America - when the towers fell & the Pentagon attacked - and the brave souls on fight 93 who knowing what had already happened decided to fight back.
We’ll consider the unity that was shown in congress that night singing ‘God Bless America’ on the capital steps - and where we’ve come as a nation in the last 20 years - and the lessons that we can learn - AND IT’S IMPERITIVE THAT WE LEARN THEM! Hos. 4:6 “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: Because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: Seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children.” Isa. 5:13 “Therefore my people are gone into captivity, because they have no knowledge: And their honourable men are famished, And their multitude dried up with thirst.”
But before we can learn any lessons from 9/11, we must first look at a most important subject, so we’ll see first The Devil’s Ways
I. The Devils Ways
I. The Devils Ways
Paul told the church in Corinth after giving instruction he said: 2 Cor. 2:11 “Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices.”
I fear most Christians today are ignorant of Satan’s devices, so though I’ve spoken on this vain before I feel it’s necessary for us to understand this intimately.
He Disguises His Appearance (v3a - The serpent…)
We notice that concerning Satan, he appeared unto Eve not in his natural beautiful angelic form, but as a serpent.
This fact really escapes no one, but few consider the question ‘WHY’? Why would Satan choose to approach Eve in this form. Truly, (logic tells us that) if he could approach Eve as a serpent, he could have approached her as anything else - or in no external form at all, so why did he?
We’ll get into the why in a moment, but I want to make one point concerning how He Disguises His Appearance, and that is that you can’t expect Satan to look like what you expect him to. Satan will appear to you in forms you never would have thought. When we think of how wicked & evil he is, we conjure up an image in our minds that often doesn’t look like.
The Devil will Disguise His Appearance - because (2) He Operates by Deception
He Operates by Deception (v3b - was more subtil…)
I have spoken before on the significance of the word that God used first to describe Satan: subtil (def) sly; cunning; crafty (usually in a bad sense)
Satan did not come up to Eve in the image that we typically think of a say ‘EVE! Take that FRUIT and EAT IT!’ In other words, Satan didn’t force her to partake, he didn’t scare her into partaking - he (by her own admission v13) ‘beguiled’ her. He tricked her!
This is an important aspect for us to understand: Satan doesn’t get us out of God’s Will by forcing us, BUT BY DECEIVING US!
Satan Operates by Deception - and one of the ways he does so, is that he Diverts our Focus
He Diverts our Focus (v4-6)
(Ill.) Not long ago, my son watched the original Jurassic Park. And as I was pondering on this message, a scene from that movie popped into my head, and I believe it to be a good illustration of how Satan operates. The man was describing how the Raptors attacked. and he said that one would be to the front - seemingly unaware and get you to focus on it, while the other ones sneak up on the flank and destroy the prey. This was later illustrated in the movie against a hunter. And this is how Satan destroys his prey.
If we notice in: Gen. 3:4-6 “And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil. And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.”
The devil was able to get Eve to take her focus off of God, and place it onto herself! She stopped thinking about what God would want, what He would be pleased with, and started thinking about how SHE could be god and how it WOULD PLEASE HER TASTE, and how it would INCREASE HER KNOWLEDGE AS LIKE UNTO GOD.
Church all of what I’m giving you is relevent today - because that old dog the devil hasn’t learned any new tricks - HE HASN’T HAD TO! MAN KEEPS FALLING FOR THE SAME STUFF THAT EVE FELL FOR 6,000 YEARS AGO!
So now that we’ve taken this ancient but relevant history lesson on the Devils Ways, next we’re going to see how that relates to 9/11 and the years following in 2 The Destruction of America
II. The Destruction of America
II. The Destruction of America
Now that we understand the Devil’s Ways, let’s look back at 9/11/01 and the last 20 years in the history of this country.
The Enemy of our Focus
We were told that ‘Radical / Militant Islamist's’ were the perpetrators behind 9/11
Church, understand this: Another name for ‘Radical Islamist's’ would be ‘Fundamental Islamist's’, or ‘Faithful’ Islamist’s. What they called ‘Radical Islamist’s’ are simply those that practice Muslim doctrines faithfully.
We were told though, that we’re going to go kill those that did it, and we’re going to make sure that this could never happen again!
Side note: 20 years later and given the current administrations decisions, that promise seems pretty shaky today
We were told that the enemy was the ‘Radical Islamist’s’
Others believed that the true enemy was actually the Government itself
Some think that the government was the ones actually behind the terrorist attack to provoke a war in the middle east. I personally will not say one way or another on this other than to say that 20 years on and there are still questions that have yet to be answered.
Recently, we’ve been told that the real problem in America is Systemic Racism
We’re being told that in every institution in America is racist in some way and the only way to remedy it is to dismantle it completely.
There was actually a professor the other day that said that White people committing suicide was considered an ‘ethical act’.
Most believe that the real enemy is either Donald Trump or Joe Biden - either the Republican’s or Democrats
Politics has never been so popular & divisive as it is today.
Democrats think that if you can just get rid of those racist, chauvinist, homophobic, trans-phobic bigots, America would be great!
While the Republicans will cry against the baby killing, sodomite, tree-hugging anarchists - we get rid of those them that’s ‘Merica!
But church, I’m here to tell you that the enemy isn’t:
Muslims per se
it isn’t the Government itself
The enemy isn’t racism or even Sodomites
It’s not even Republican’s or Democrats
But Satan has done a GREAT JOB at turning our focus to such entities!
The Enemy in Fact
Some will say ‘well it’s obvious who the enemy is… Satan himself’. And truly he is the enemy - but by himself, he’s an enemy without teeth. He’s a dog with bark but no bite - specifically when it comes to Christians, as Satan has NO POWER over you if you’re born again! Satan has about as much power over the Christian, as the fire had over Sharach, Meshach & Abednigo!
The Enemy is not the Muslims outside of the United States - it’s the Apathetic Christians WITHIN the United States!
The problem is a country filled with Christians that have no focus on Christ!
The problem is not the Government - but the Country that no longer holds a Christian Worldview that voted them in!
The problem is not the lost people in America - it’s the Christians who see no urgency to win them to Christ!
Christians are so busy pointing their fingers at every entity under the sun, but they fail to take a good hard look in the mirror.
The enemy is not without, it’s within. The vast majority of Christians that make up the church in America - their hearts are not right with God! Satan has beguiled us into valuing things without value - to spending time & effort on meaningless things, while the important things go undone!
Satan has done a good job of filling Christians with vanity - just as he did Eve.
It’s important that we understand the enemy. We’ve been focused on something that in itself is not dangerous at all - all the while Satan has crept up unawares and is destroying America.
America is Rotting away from the inside out. Look at what we’ve become in the last 20 years:
We have legalized marriage between members of the same gender
In fact, we have somehow forgot what exactly constitutes a boy or a girl
20 years ago, we believed that there were only 2 genders...
We have schools firing teachers for refusing to refer to a boy as a girl
We have school systems indoctrinating racist beliefs into children
We have rioting in the streets of American cities, and lawless zones declared
Every other day we lose more liberty than we had the day before
Our society declares ‘my body my choice’ when it comes to murdering the unborn, yet no choice when it comes to being subjected to a vaccine.
Let me ask you this: Is America better off today than it was 20 years and a day ago?
Has our degeneration came from Muslims?
Has it come because God’s power is insufficient to transform?
Has it come because of the lost among us? (The lost don’t know how to live Godly)
Or is it because Christians have made themselves like god and forgotten to head God’s instructions? (Just like Eve)
We’ve seen the Devil’s Ways - how he works subtly, hiding his appearance and beguiling his prey; then we’ve examined the true destructive force at work in America - which is in a few words Christian Apathy. Next I want to examine Where the Danger Truly Lies - what should we be concerned about in America
III. Where Danger Truly Lies
III. Where Danger Truly Lies
Given the circumstances in Afghanistan, it’s reasonable to expect another 9/11 type attack on America. So should that be our focus as Christians in America?
Learn from Israel
First let’s consider the church in the wilderness.
After the spies went to spy out the land and 10 gave evil reports & 2 good, the COI were left in the wilderness for 40 years.
They were stranded in the wilderness 40 years because they were focused on themselves instead of their God & His instruction
Next let’s consider the times of the Judges
During this time of Theocracy, the COI time and again would become enslaved by other nations.
The Midianites oppressed them
The Philistines oppressed & enslaved them time & again
It wasn’t because they were unable to conquer the enemy, it’s because of the continuous attitude of God’s people found in: Judg. 2:17b “...but they went a whoring after other gods, and bowed themselves unto them: they turned quickly out of the way which their fathers walked in, obeying the commandments of the Lord; but they did not so.” Judg 17:6b “... every man did that which was right in his own eyes.”
Then the Nations of Israel & Judah
They both eventually were overtaken by Babylon - but not because Babylon was greater - BUT BECAUSE THEY FORGOT THEIR GOD!
The danger for America doesn’t lie in a political party, it doesn’t lie with the sodomites, nor does it lie with the muslims. THESE ARE SYMPTOMS, NOT THE PROBLEM. The Babylonians weren’t the problem, they were the result of the problem.
And we here in America better realize what the problem is and treat it before it destroys us as it did Israel!
Listen to David
David said in Psa. 9:16-17 “The Lord is known by the judgment which he executeth: The wicked is snared in the work of his own hands. Higgaion. Selah. The wicked shall be turned into hell, And all the nations that forget God.”
ALL the nations that forget God.
(Ill.) I was riding through the mid-west United States with some gentlemen that I had witnessed to the night before. This is approx. 2007-8 when the recession was beginning. And one of the men said to me ‘America can never fail - because of all this right here (pointing at the endless cornfields we were passing). He said ‘we feed the world, so American will never fail.
I realized the fallacy in that thinking right off, but I didn’t put the connection till last night. This is was Cain’s way of thinking!
Church, America is not too big to fail! Greater kingdoms, with greater influence have fallen in the past - and we can as well! And mark my words - WE WILL IF WE CONTINUE ON THIS PATH! WE ARE IN DANGEROUS TERRITORY!
We’d better listen to David - for we are in Danger… But church, there is hope today!
Lastly I want to look at that hope for a moment. America CAN be delivered from the Moral, and ungodly abyss we are in! There is hope for America!
IV. Where Deliverance is Found
IV. Where Deliverance is Found
2 Chr. 7:14 “If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.”
Forsake Pride - ‘humble themselves’
Plead Unto God - ‘pray’
Pursue After God - ‘seek my face’
Put Away Wicked Ways - ‘turn from their wicked ways’
Until Christians - not lost people - are willing to do this, America will continue to circle the drain waxing worse & worse until God finally destroys us.
There is a remedy - if we will follow it!