War – First Anniversary Word on the Week 25th February 2023.
Nobody thought the Ukrainian War would last 12 long months. Now no one thinks it will be over soon! It is much easier to start wars than to stop them! Not that the Russian President, Vladimir Putin, shows any signs of wanting a ceasefire.
Indeed, his belligerent speeches before the ‘faithful’ this week attributed the outbreak of hostilities to the West. This presented the fanciful picture of little Ukraine with supporting friends challenging Russia. In a modern version of the David and Goliath contest, the roles are reversed, and David becomes the aggressor! (1 Samuel 16 verses 41 to 50).
The history of wars demonstrate that they are waged in order to gain territory. They tend to come out of extreme nationalism. In the case of Ukraine, it is a territory that Putin clearly thinks should be Russian. It was part of the lands restored to independence following the 1991 collapse of Soviet Union.
Those born since 1991 are known as the “Born Free Generation”. They are eager for their nation to escape Russia’s shadow and join Europe and the West. The East of Ukraine have Russian as their first language and were less inclined to go with their Eastern people and join NATO.
This reluctance has now disappeared. The war appears to have united the country under their able President Volodymyr Zelenskiy. This was the very thing the invaders did not want to happen!
‘Where do you think all these appalling wars and quarrels come from? Do you think they just happen? Think again. They come about because you want your own way, and fight for it deep inside yourselves. You lust for what you don’t have and are willing to kill to get it. You want what isn’t yours and will risk violence to get your hands on it. You wouldn’t think of just asking God for it, would you? And why not? Because you know you’d be asking for what you have no right to.’
But there is something we do have access to whether we are Putin or Zelenskiy or you or me and that is the cleansing blood of Christ which applied to the sinner opens the door to forgiveness and a Christ centered way of life (1John 1 verses 7 to 9). This is the miracle of God’s grace we call the Gospel comes through prayer in faith to Jesus Christ.