REFUGEES

June 1, 2021

One hears of "refugees" often today, especially with regard to the southern border of the United States. It is a word commonly used, and probably even abused.

One doesn't seek refuge from discomfort. Refugee status has historically been reserved for those in the deepest and most dire of dangers. A refugee is granted that status when the government from which refuge is sought recognizes that a significant and ongoing threat to the refugee's life exists. It must be a threat so severe as to require extraordinary intervention.

During World War II, many Jews sought refuge from various nations as Hitler's regime attempted to eradicate them from the face of the earth. It was an existential threat that required an extraordinary intervention. Many good and righteous people put themselves at risk - even of their own lives -- to step in and shield Jews from the Nazi regime that was so determined to destroy them.

In the same way, God is a shield to those who take refuge in Him.

We have an enemy whose only goal is to steal, kill and utterly destroy. He steals our possessions, our joy, our peace and our identity. He rips from us the very things that allow us to live in peace. He mocks and ridicules us mercilessly, breaking our will to resist with depression, anger and hopelessness. He takes anything we value. His goal is our death. Another notch in his ugly belt. Another life destroyed. His pursuit never ceases while we live on this planet.

And from his evil and hateful assaults, God shields us and offers us refuge. The Almighty enters this battle which all humans face by taking upon Himself the very nature of victim. Jesus Christ, fully God and yet fully man, enters and intervenes. He provides our refuge. He provides the way of evasion and escape.

God Himself is a shield to those who take refuge in Him.

Many Jews sought refuge during those dark days of Hitler's madness in places that initially seemed safe, but in the end they were found out and captured by the enemy. For many, it was at the cost of their lives. But Jesus provides a place of refuge that will not fail. He is a shield that will not be circumvented.

Deuteronomy 33:12 says "The beloved of the Lord shall dwell in safety by Him; and the Lord shall cover him all the day long, and He shall dwell between his shoulders." The Almighty dwelling between your shoulders. The shield of shields over your heart. Perfect protection, perfect peace; regardless of the battles which rage around us.

God Himself is a shield to those who take refuge in Him.

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