This weekend marks 10 years since the historic events of 9/11. As we listen to the heartbreaking, personal stories of those who lost loved ones on that day, our hearts are filled with compassion and a desire to want to ease their suffering. The courage of the first responders and the bravery of the heroes on Flight 93 are the epitome of what it means to be willing to lay down your life for others. Those amazing stories of sacrifice are still not enough to make sense out of that terrible attack or the consequences of it.
WIthout the cross of Jesus Christ and His empty tomb, there is no way to cope with that kind of loss and suffering and come out of it with any hope or victory. Without the sacrifice of Jesus, the ultimate First Responder, we would be left with deep sorrow at the tragedy of 9/11 but no way to experience God's healing or to successfully move forward. The abomination is too great. The wound is too deep. Those who lost loved ones on that day were left with the searing pain of knowing that the terrorists were the reason that their loved ones were dead. How do you even begin to cope with such immense trauma?
The only way to make any sense out of this horror is to realize that the "first and worst terrorist" in the world was Satan. He flew into the "twin towers" of Adam and Eve and caused them to fall by tempting them to disobey God. When those two fell, the impact would be felt worldwide and for many centuries to come. If it was not for our First Responder and the salvation He won for us at the cross, we would be eternally lost in the kind of hell that was experienced at Ground Zero on September 11, 2001. It wouldn't just be somebody else there – it would be you and it would be me experiencing it not just for a day, but forever. The truth of that statement is not dependent upon our ability to wrap our mind around it.
There are many people today who do not know how much Jesus loves them or the gift of redemption which He has made available for them. The tower of their earthly body will come crumbling down one day. Jesus stands there in the stairwell of their life ready to rescue them before it is too late. His arms are open. Their salvation is prepared. It does not matter whether they belong to a particular religious denomination, or none at all. Either way, each one of them and each one of us is in need of being rescued by Jesus.
You can be among the brave and courageous responders who come alongside Jesus and help to "snatch others from the fire." (Jude 23) Will you as a "spiritual firefighter" pray often for your lost loved ones to be saved, and wlll you look for ways to help them meet the only One who can save them? Let's not let this 9/11 anniversary pass without doing everything we can do to help anyone who is still trapped in their own twin towers of sin and rebellion against God. If you are one of those who has not yet said "Yes" to Jesus, then why not make this anniversary weekend your personal weekend of eternal victory and deliverance? What if the Lord uses those horrific videos and images from 10 years ago to "wake you up" to the reality of your need for God?
If it were not for the grace of God, each of us would be hopelessly doomed as we waited for the tower of our earthly life to come to a crashing end and the beginning of an "eternal Ground Zero." It is difficult to grasp the reality of heaven and hell because we have not experienced either of those places and we have no "footage" from any reporters who have gone there. God's Word paints a picture of those places for us and God invites us to take Him at His Word. Do you have as much confidence in God's Word as you do in the 9/11 videos that are being played on television this weekend?
The videos vividly relive the reality of 9/11 and those events cannot be denied even by those who deny the reality of heaven or hell. Denial in these eternal matters is common among people who do not understand that there was a worldwide attack that happened long before 9/11. The biggest terrorist attack against us was actually the first and the worst. That initial attack took place in the Garden of Eden some 6000 years ago. There were no video cameras there, but there was real carnage and it reached into the future to steal life and hope and love. We are still trying to dig out of the dust and the rubble of that horrible day and the way that it turned men's hearts to hate Jesus Christ and to hate others. How else can you even begin to make any sense out of what happened 10 years ago on 9/11?