In light of the immense suffering that the people of Japan are enduring, this must seem like a particularly callous question.  I am asking it, because God has raised up watchmen to prophesy judgment over America, and some of us are hearing that message quite often.   With such things at the forefront of our consciousness, it can be easy to assume that any Nation that is suffering disaster must be under God’s judgment.  However, that may not be the case.

I know very little of Japan, and do not have an answer to that question.  However, I do know that before God judges a nation, He raises up watchmen to give a warning and to call the people to repentance.  What do the Christians in Japan say?  Surely God does nothing without first telling His people.

I will share my feelings about the nation of Japan, though I certainly know very little.  Perhaps it will add another small facet of understanding, for those who ponder such things.

I know of Japan, that horrendous acts took place during their war with China.  Cruel, vicious crimes were committed.  The Japanese were a fierce and violent people.

Their lust for war plunged us into World War II, after their unprovoked (as far as I know) attack on Pearl Harbor.  The United States rose up in rage and nearly crushed Japan, when we bombed Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

After that, something changed in the heart of the Japanese people.  I don’t know that the Japanese people ever fell on their knees and repented before God.  I don’t know if they ever called out to God at all.  But I do know that they have  ‘proved their repentance by their deeds’ over more than six decades.

Since World War II, the people of Japan have become a people of civility, and industry.  They have lived quietly, worked with their hands, and created beauty.  They have kept their honor and their word.  They have found the law that God wrote upon their hearts, and they have lived it.

I don’t have the wisdom to say whether God is judging Japan–but I know that hardships come to all of us.  Sometimes they come to chasten us, and other times to refine us.

I urge you not to harden your hearts against the people of Japan . . . not to assume that they are being judged or merit the tremendous hardships that have befallen them.  And I urge you not to harden your heart against God . . . not to assume that He sent these disasters upon them.

Rather, hold the Japanese in your heart and pray for them to have strength.  Pray for God’s mercy upon them, in the weeks and months ahead.  Pray that this hardship further refines them, and brings forth even greater beauty from their souls.  And, most importantly, pray that they will turn their eyes to Jesus and find their strength and inspiration in Him.

 

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