Russian President Vladimir Putin bragged Thursday of new weaponry that will render NATO defenses “completely useless.”
The Kremlin leader said Russia had developed a new, nuclear-capable cruise missile with “unlimited” range that is capable of dodging US air-defense systems.
He claimed the “invincible” missile could deliver a warhead at hypersonic speed.
Putin, who is running for re-election in March, told the Russian parliament: “Russia still has the greatest nuclear potential in the world, but nobody listened to us.”
“Listen now,” he warned, adding: “I’m not bluffing.”
During times like this, we can look to Scripture to help us formulate appropriate responses to troubling news.
Here are two biblical responses:
#1- Take danger seriously.
Scripture says: “The prudent see danger and take refuge, but the simple keep going and pay the penalty” (Proverbs 22:3 NIV).
Author Joel Rosenberg says: “Vladimir Putin is far more dangerous than Radical Islam.”
“Most Americans – including most officials in Washington – are focused on the threats posed by North Korea, Iran, ISIS and al Qaeda. But as serious as those threats are, we need to understand afresh just how grave a threat Putin poses to the U.S. and our NATO and Middle Eastern allies. He has just threatened us with a new first-strike nuclear weapon that he claims cannot be intercepted.”
Rosenberg adds, “Any leader who does not take seriously countering the Putin threat does so at his peril.”
2 Timothy 3 tells us that “in the last days” evil will increase. While we can’t live in fear each day, we must take evil threats seriously.
#2- Remember Heaven Rules.
What do I mean?
The only place in Scripture we find the expression “Heaven rules” is Daniel 4:26.
The prophet Daniel used the phrase when he interpreted a dream for Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar about an enormous tree that was ordered by an “angelic watcher” to be cut down; only the stump and roots could remain (Daniel 4:11-26).
In verse 22, Daniel explains that Nebuchadnezzar represented the tree that was ordered to be cut down.
Nebuchadnezzar gave himself credit for the accomplishments of his kingdom (Daniel 4:30).
Daniel told Nebuchadnezzar severe punishment would happen “until you acknowledge that the Most High is sovereign over all kingdoms on earth and gives them to anyone he wishes” (Daniel 4:25).
Then, in verse 26, Daniel informed Nebuchadnezzar that his kingdom would only be restored after “you acknowledge that Heaven rules.”
Unfortunately, Nebuchadnezzar chose to challenge Heaven’s warning and found out the hard way that God keeps His word.
Later, Nebuchadnezzar’s grandson, Belshazzar, learned a similar lesson during the “handwriting on the wall” episode recorded in Daniel 5 – which brings us to a necessary application for us all.
According to Daniel 5:25-26, each of us is accountable to God for any power or influence He’s given us in this life – including Vladimir Putin.
While some people get away with evil right now, the Bible guarantees a day of reckoning will come (2 Peter 3:9-10).
As we wait for Jesus to return and right all the wrongs in our world, let’s humbly acknowledge any power or position we hold in this life was given to us by God (Daniel 2:21).
One day, everyone – including every world leader – will acknowledge to God that indeed, Heaven rules.
Photo: By Mihailo1997 – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=45649904
Laura Lacey Johnson is a cutting-edge faith and culture writer who focuses on everyday headlines. In addition to speaking, she is a columnist for Christian Headlines.com. To read Laura’s latest work on the headlines, visit www.lauralaceyjohnson.com, or to download your FREE copy of Why Jerusalem is Important to 3 World Religions, subscribe to her blog here.