I suppose you think history has been kind of random. Most folks do.
I’ll admit it sure looks that way. Kingdoms rise and fall. Generals and tyrants sweep back and forth across the continents. Peace and quiet never lasts for long. Justice plays hide-and-seek. Science stumbles forward in spurts. Technology pogos ever upward, propelled by discoveries that are often accidental. It’s hard to see the flow of ancient history because it seems like a 12-foot-high stack of snapshots.
In contrast, our own times seem like a speeded-up film of Grand Central Station, where 10 hours is squeezed into 30 seconds. Take my life, for example. As something of a refugee from the German submarine attacks on my native Aruba in World War II, I was sent at age 3 1/2 to live for a delightful, snail-paced year in Colorado with my grandparents. I absorbed a lot of vibes from my dear, sainted granddad, who patiently answered my endless questions like “What if the sun came up in the west tomorrow?” etc. He was born in Missouri, across the road from Jesse James’ mom’s spread, to which he saw the James gang returning from time to time to pay their respects (being good family boys). Granddad was born two months after the telephone and three years before the light bulb.
Now here I am today, with a globally read column, several websites, four more books in progress and plans for a video blog so I can fly around the world, interview some of the hundreds whom God has raised from the dead and instantly transmit the video to millions of people in a hundred nations.
What I’m saying is I’ve seen and felt the swoosh of history, and today it’s accelerating like a top-fuel dragster. That angel certainly nailed it in Daniel 12:4: “But Daniel, keep this prophecy a secret; seal it up so that it will not be understood until the end times, when travel and knowledge shall be vastly increased!”
Yet we’re still connected tightly to the long chain of slow history that was loosely but clearly scripted in advance by the Sovereign Creator, the God of Abraham. The improv factor has allowed a lot of zig-zags, but the plot remains clear: It is the supreme, heart-gripping saga of the ages, with a cast of billions (all speaking parts, no extras), a murder mystery with enough reversals to throw any historian off track, and a surprise ending that I’m repeatedly attempting to unwrap for you in my books and columns.
Here is my urgent appeal and promise: Link your life to this drama (it’s the only show in the universe) and you will find yourself living a new adventure with greater power and the highest possible purpose. Take your rightful role, take it now and in due time you will find that the blood of a thousand heroes and martyrs runs through your veins.
Inventions R Us
Fire, farming, pottery, metalworking, the wheel, money, writing.
With perfect obedience, the ancient humans carried out the command to civilize the world:
And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion. … (Genesis 1:28)
We modern humans have carried on in fine style with the telescope, microscope, combustion engine, electric motor, computer and atomic energy. All else has flowed from these foundations, including space travel and now the eighth wonder of the world, the Internet.
We do good work in the tech area, in inventing ways to improve our lives. In choosing good over evil, we’re not so hot.
The middle game was scripted
Whether or not you believe in talking snakes, the outcome is the same: The human situation quickly became fubar – Fouled Up Beyond All Recognition. One bite of that juicy apple, and the rest of history has been fix, fix, fix.
In an instant, Adam and Even went from nude to naked, embarrassingly so. But the Lord graciously stepped in with some clothing – fix No. 1. (If you’ve never seen actual fig leaves, well, they aren’t as big as Eve might have wished.)
The next step was the promise of the Ultimate Fix, the triumphal sacrifice of Mary’s Son on the cross: God rebuked the serpent with, “I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her seed; he shall tread your head underfoot, and you shall wound his heel.” (Genesis 3:15)
See the picture? Satan uses an innocent woman to produce misery for the whole human race, and God uses a virgin to produce a second Adam, who will save and restart that race. Pow! The unbeatable, unflappable Almighty devises the world’s first boomerang, and Satan whacks himself with it, thereby losing Round Two of his fight with the Lord when, later, Eve’s great-great-whatever granddaughter delivers the Goods that will crush evil underfoot.
Today, we endlessly celebrate this mismatch with dramatizations ranging from Luke Skywalker struggling with Darth Vader to the Lone Ranger duking it out with the bad guy to the luckless Wile E. Coyote rigging up yet another can’t-fail gizmo from the Acme Corporation to nail the Roadrunner. The ultimate triumph of good over evil, of God over Satan, is embedded in our souls from childhood.
The above is adapted from Rutz’s latest book, “The Meaning of Life.”