“In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world” (John 16:33).
When I started thinking about this verse, I didn’t realize I’d be writing about it for Sept. 11, but few verses could be more appropriate.
In many ways, life has gotten pretty much back to normal for the average American, but I don’t think September 11 will be ever just another day for anyone who lived through that day. It will long be a day to reflect on the kinds of things that can happen on a sunny Tuesday morning. We all know intellectually that we and those we love can die any day, but most days we live our lives as if that isn't so.
The truth is, we're not promised a single day. What we are promised is that many of the days we are graciously given will be filled with struggle, pain, sweat, and tears. Despite what some charlatans preach, Christians are not immune to this. In fact, Jesus promises that our lives will be very hard. And then He reminds us that He has overcome this world.
This world is fallen and infested by evil forces. Life is hard because we live in a world of entropy and disease, and it's hard because we live in a world under the influence of Satan. Both of these conditions will be reversed. Christ has won the war; the final chapter has been written. We only await the final consummation.
Until then, we're going to struggle with this world. But we know in the end we will win because He has won.