World War 1 was labeled the war to end all wars. Since then, we’ve had World War 2, Korea, Vietnam, a Middle East quagmire, and any number of smaller conflicts that have cost hundreds of thousands of lives. We have political divisions at home like never before, while politicians, instead of striving for unity, are profiteering from the very enemies who seek to divide us.
And now, this very night , we stand on the precipice of World War 3, and no one seems to know or even care. It’s not because we are planning for it; most wars never happen that way- they are simply stumbled into most times by accident or disinformation. The sovereign nation of Ukraine, has 130,000 Russian troops poised on its border to strike at any moment , from Crimea to the south and Belarus to the north of Kiev. Our joint chiefs of staff said tonight that The capital of Kiev would fall within 72 hours at a cost of 15,000 Ukrainian solders, as well as 5,000 Russians soldiers. He went on to say that 1.5 million refugees would be fleeing into surrounding European countries.
The question is being asked,’ Why should we care? What can Ukraine do for us?’ I want to put aside the politics, for a moment, and look at it from a human and Spiritual perspective. Putting aside the fact that I have family there and a church which has become like family, as well as involvement over a span of almost 30 years, I have seen in the Ukrainian people a love for Jesus that has been formed through the blood, sweat, and tears of countless invasions by blood thirsty tyrants who have tried to stamp out Ukrainian language, culture, and even religious faith. The cycle has been endless, but it has only strengthened the faith of the faithful. For that reason alone, Ukraine matters to me, because Jesus teaches us that when one part of the body suffers, the whole body suffers.
Ukraine is but a microcosm of the Spirit of anti -Christ that threatens any place in this world where the name of Jesus is being lifted up. Shortly before the Last Russian invasion of Ukraine, when Crimea was seized, I had the privilege one evening to attend a church service far into the woods on a very dark night. We walked for a good distance and came upon a ramshackle building, with the windows all covered. Even then the believers had to meet in hiding because of persecution. I will never forget as we opened those big wooden doors and the sound of praise and celebration engulfed us in such a way that the woods seemed to spring forth in splendor and awe. I saw that night a body of believers so sold out to Jesus, that not even the fear of prison or death would stop them. Likewise 2 years ago, I was part of a team as we joined 800,000 Believers on the streets of Kiev celebrating, for the first time the right to worship Jesus without fear and suppression.
While I understand the political implications of our involvement in Eastern Europe, it does not negate the fact, that our brothers and sisters need us- if nothing more than to pray that the enemies’s plans would be thwarted and that war could be averted. But just as important, I pray that we the church wake up to the fact that the time is late. We are living in the days Jesus spoke of. And finally, may it never be said that we become so naive to the spiritual war raging around us and so blind to the needs of our brothers and sisters in Christ that we EVER ask the question- ‘Why should I care?’ The blood of Ukrainian martyrs is crying out for us to do so!