Welcome back to Second Chance Wednesdays! It is once again time to turn to the People of the Second Chance's poster series, Never Beyond. If you are new to this campaign, you can read more about it and find links to all of my Never Beyond posts here.
Our villain this week is the dictator Kim Jong Il, the Supreme Leader of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (North Korea).
According to the POTSC blog, "He has been in power for 13 years, and his time has been marked by nationalized manipulation, repression, isolation, and starvation. North Korea is perhaps the most isolated country on Earth; knowledge of the regime relies heavily on secondhand testimony and clandestine video."
Kim Jong-Il's government has admitted to developing nuclear weapons and conducting underground nuclear tests. They think they need to do this for their own protection. They like to rattle swords at South Korea and the United States to keep us on our toes. Evidently, we aren't on the friendliest of terms with North Korea.
I grew up in the Cold War. I remember bomb drills at school. You gotta know that hiding under your desk will protect you from that nasty ol' nuclear bomb, right? But there were missiles pointed at the US and we had missiles pointed at the old Soviet Union and many of their allies. It was a great big stand-off.
I guess it is growing up in that time period that gives me a healthy fear of anyone having nuclear bombs. Secretive dictators having a big red launch button to push does not make me feel good at all. I was taught that it is just downright patriotic to hate dictators and all those red-communist-bleepity-bleep-bleeps and if I wave my American flag when I say that, it's all good.
Then again, I was also taught to read my Bible. I have looked in every book and I have not found a verse that said, "Nuke'em, boys!".
I did find this, though:
Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence. 1 Timothy 2:1-2 (NKJV)
I'm thinking Kim Jong-Il falls into that "authority" category here. I also found this:
But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. Matt. 5:44-45 (NIV)
I'm going to take a guess here and say that anyone who might want to launch a nuclear missile in my general direction might qualify as an enemy. Yet I am asked to love and pray for this man - a man who does not value my life and evidently doesn't really value the lives of the very people he rules.
Can I do that? Will I do that?
I did not purposely bring this to mind, but I have a song running through my head right now that won't go away. We used to sing it at church camp. It goes like this:
He paid a debt He did not owe.Is that song really for Kim Jong-Il too?
I owe a debt I did not pay.
I needed someone
To wash my sins away.
And now I sing
A brand new song.
Christ Jesus paid the debt
That I could never pay.