Why are the nations so angry?
Why do they waste their time with futile plans?
The kings of the earth prepare for battle;
the rulers plot together against the Lord
and against his anointed one.
“Let us break their chains,” they cry,
“and free ourselves from slavery to God.”
But the one who rules in heaven laughs.
The Lord scoffs at them. (NLT)
We may think we live in a time of unprecedented civil unrest and strife. But while there is evidence of that all around us, the fact that it is so readily communicated to us makes it seem more severe. History, including biblical history, is full of examples of such unrest although due to lack of easy communication, much of it was unknown to most people.
Nations have always been in conflict with one another. Puffed up national leaders who mistake bullying for leadership and aggression for boldness have always been with us. Nations and individuals have often sought to ignore God and go their own way.
Injustice breeds further injustice; violence on one side arouses violence on the other side; sweep one lot of corrupt politicians from power and another corrupt lot take their place. It is all a sad, dangerous and ultimately futile game. Sad because it reflects so badly on the human condition. Dangerous because it causes so much harm to people, especially those who are vulnerable.
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And futile because there is only one ruler of the world. He won’t be mocked forever, even by those who supposedly wield power in his name. Our Psalm does not suggest God finds the world situation funny enough to enjoy a good belly laugh. This is the scoffing laughter of one who will have the last laugh.