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By Randolph Gonce      


Every time I hear our leaders talk about our greatness, and assure our victory over our enemies, I draw up inside. I know that wealth, power, and strong armies do not insure success. Ultimately, our deliverance from evil men will depend on our dependence on God, and our willingness to honor Him.       


Surely our nation has risen to greatness as a result of our honoring God in our culture and government. But we have come horribly close to losing   that status of greatness because a major part of our culture is refusing to respect God. Thankfully, many of our people still trust in God. Our money still says so, even though a few would like to change that.      


Many voices are calling Christians to prayer on behalf of our nation. We should pray for God's righteous judgment, that His will be done on earth as it is in heaven. We need to pray for Christian revival in our nation. We should pray for our enemies, that their minds will be open to truth, and that they too will learn about Jesus.       


Jesus said this about praying for our enemies, "But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven." Matt 5:44-45, NIV.       


Praying for our enemies should include praying for our deliverance from evil men. Appeasement of wickedness is not the solution to world problems. It is time for people to remember British Prime Minister Chamberlain and his "peace in our time" declaration about the deal with Hitler leading up to World War II. Soon after he was forced by events to declare war on the Nazis.       


Paul was not talking about world wars, but church problems, when he wrote these words, "And pray that we may be delivered from wicked and evil men, for not everyone has faith." 2 Thess 3:2-3.      


But the principle of praying for deliverance from evil men surely applies as well to the world situation today. Paul encouraged Timothy to pray for world rulers so that Christians might live peaceful lives, "I urge, then, first of all, that requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for everyone- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness." 1 Tim 2:1-3, NIV.       


We live in dangerous times. We need to pray for the rulers of the nations, that peace and righteousness may prevail in the world.       


We should pray that righteous judgment triumphs over the evil designs of men like Saddam Hussein. It is difficult to know what we should pray for Saddam himself. Surely he is our enemy. He stands in opposition to peace in the world. We are taught to pray for our enemy and to pray for peace. These things are not in conflict. The Saints pictured in Revelation were praying for judgment upon the Roman Empire, including evil emperors like Domitian.       


"They called out in a loud voice, "How long, Sovereign Lord, holy and true, until you judge the inhabitants of the earth and avenge our blood?" Rev 6:9-10, NIV.      


The soldier does not wear a sword in vain. Weapons used justly by governments are instruments of terror to inflict judgment upon the wicked. "For he is God's servant to do you good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword for nothing. He is God's servant, an agent of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer." Rom 13:4, NIV.      


Let us pray for peace, but also for justice. May God's will be done on earth as it is in heaven.