How Great is Our God

How Great is Our God
“In the beginning God created the Heavens and the Earth.” Gen 1:1
The heavens are proclaiming the glory of God, and the expanse declares the work of His hands.  Night after night the stars remind us of just how small we are and how huge God is.  Looking out into the far reaches of the universe, we find a seemingly infinite expanse of mystery and wonder, intricately fashioned by God of unfathomable size and power. 
Just a glimpse at one of the billions of visible galaxies He has formed, resizes us.  It shrinks us, and this world we call home, to seeming insignificance in an instant.  But, as tiny as we may seem, the God who knows every star by name also knows you.  And, in the most stunning rescue imaginable, God sent His Son to this spinning planet we call home.  The Creator is reconnecting us to Himself with the life that never ends through Christ and His Sacrifice on the cross.  We need only look at God’s universe to discover something of the amazing magnitude of His greatness and His grace.
Something of the grandeur of God is seen in His creation.  We read in Ps 33:6:  “By the Word of the Lord were the heavens made, their starry host by the breath of His mouth.”  
He made the stars by the breath of His mouth!  The nearest star to earth is 93 million miles away – the sun.  The earth is a privileged planet with just the right conditions for life.  We are exactly the right distance from the sun to benefit from its fierce heat which is 10,000°C on the surface! 
The sun is a million times the size of earth.  If the earth was the size of a golf ball, the sun would be 15 feet in diameter. 
Another star in the galaxy, Betelgeuse, has twice the size of the orbit of the earth around the sun!  If the earth was the size of a golf ball, Betelgeuse would be the size of three Empire State buildings on top of one another in diameter. 
Yet, there is an even larger star, Mucehpei.  If the earth was the size of a golf ball, Mucehpei would be the length of two Golden Gate bridges in diameter! However, not even Mucehpei is the largest star in the galaxy.  Canis Majoris is so huge that if the earth was the size of a golf ball, Canis Majoris would be the height of Mount Everest in diameter, in comparison!
God breathed the stars into being.  We need to take a glance up into the universe to recognise what a great and majestic, unrivalled and incomparable God we worship. 
Sin seeks to shrink God and puff ourselves up.  The universe God made shows us what tiny and frail creatures we are.  Yet, we are fearfully and wonderfully made, fashioned and formed by the Creator of the universe Himself. 
Just consider how each of us is a product of a single cell from our father, and a single cell from our mother, which united to form a completely new and unique individual.  
Twenty-three chromosones from the mother and twenty-three chromosones from the father, united to form a unique cell, with a three-billion character description in your DNA.  Each cell in your body has its DNA code – encoded in the language of God.  If the DNA of one cell was stretched out it would be six feet long.  In that DNA there’s so much information that, if it was read out, one character a second, every moment of every day.
It would take 96 years just to read your DNA code in a single cell!
Consider also that, at conception, the single cell of 46 chromosomes then sets out to build the model which now makes up the 75 trillion cells in your body. 
There is enough DNA code in your body to go to the moon and back – 178,000 times!  And your cells are constantly renewing and replacing themselves.  At five months after conception, while still in the womb, a million optic nerve cells are stretched out to match up with their exact partner, out of a million other optic nerve endings, to make possible the  miracle of sight.  The most technically advanced thing in the world is the eye.  At six months, a precision cutting device opened up the skin over your eyes, creating the eyelids, so that you could see.
The Scriptures tell us that the God of the Heavens fashioned you together.  He spoke and it came into being.  Augustine wrote that men go abroad to wonder at the mountains, the waves, the rivers and the stars, but they pass themselves by and they don’t even notice.
Our God is a universe maker and He can hold you together. 
You may ask: Does God see?  Does He care?  Can He do something to help me? 
Consider the little protein molecule in your bodies.  Laminin is a cell adhesion molecule.  It is the glue of the human body, the structural steel that holds the buildings together.  Laminin holds our bodies together. 
If you consult a molecular biology textbook you will see that Laminin is a cross-shaped molecular structure.  It is this cross-shaped protein molecule that holds everything in our body together. 
“He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.  For by Him all things were created: things in Heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by Him and for Him.  He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together.” Col 1:15-17
The supremacy and sufficiency of Christ is attested to by the millions of microscopic crosses holding you together. The Star Breather became the Sin Bearer.  The Universe Maker is the Saviour. 
“To whom, then, will you compare God?…Do you not know?  Have you not heard?  Has it not been told you from the beginning?  Have you not understood since the earth was founded?…He stretches out the heavens like a canopy, and spreads them out like a tent to live in…Lift your eyes and look to the heavens.  Who created all these?  He who brings out the starry host one by one, and calls them each by name.  Because of His great power and mighty strength, not one of them is missing…Do you not know?  Have you not heard?  The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth.  He will not grow tired or weary, and His understanding no one can fathom.  He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak…Those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength.  They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not faint.”  Isa 40:18-31
Your life is a miracle and the Creator of the universe knows you by name.  He is big enough to breathe out stars so huge that we cannot even begin to comprehend them.  Yet, God is intricate enough to fashion together the trillions of cells that make up every facet of who you are. 
The God who spoke the universe into existence made you, too.  He knows everything about you –  from the smallest molecule to the situation you find yourself in right now.  He is aware of your circumstances and intimately acquainted with everything that you do.  He cares about you and He promises to carry you through. 
From the cosmos to the cross we can find hope in the midst of the darkest situations in life.  Though our journey may have been complicated and painful, filled with confusion and chaos, but at the cross of Christ, God promises to preserve and restore you.  He is the One who is holding on to you and holding you together. He gives strength to those who trust in His unfailing love.  He is the everlasting God!  How great is our God! This message is based upon Louie Giglio’s presentation: How Great Is Our God.  Louie Giglio is the Director of Passion Conferences.  His stated goal is to know God intimately and to glorify Him in all things.

Christmas in a Rehab

Christmas in a Rehab
I recently caught up with Pastor Sophos Nissiotis and Gladys from Noupoort Christian Care Centre.
I felt it necessary to do this interview in light of the prolific drug problem facing parents today.
There are one or two controversial questions and answers that were highlighted and I trust you will be grateful for this information.
We encourage you to do your own investigation and research if this directly conflicts with your opinion. JOY! Magazine is willing to publish controversial   information if we feel it is in the interest of our readers. This information is, however, based on personal testimony and experience of the drug counsellors and workers at Noupoort.  You are welcome to contact them for further evidence and information regarding the claims:
Sophos, what’s it like spending Christmas in a rehab?
Better than celebrating on the streets or in a tik/crack house. The sooner the addict gets to know the Lord Jesus Christ, the sooner they will realise how important their recovery is.
How many kids will be spending Christmas at Noupoort this year?
Approximately 140, that is  both here in Noupoort and Middleton (CIARA), 2nd phase recovery centre, which is a working town in the Eastern Cape.
What is the duration of a stay in your rehab?
A minimum period of 52 weeks is offered in order for individuals to gain insight and restore their self-confidence. After the successful completion, we strongly recommend a further 52 weeks ‘Year of your life programme’ at no cost.
What is the gender make up of patients at Noupoort ?
75% male –  25% female, average age 25.
What is the most common addiction amongst kids today?
Currently tik, dagga and heroin are the drugs of choice for teenagers.
Is there a common pattern of how one gets addicted ?
It all begins with cigarettes, alcohol, and dagga. Then the next step would be tik, cocaine, crack cocaine and heroin.
What is the most difficult addiction to cure?
Nicotine, alcohol, prescription drugs, gambling, sexual addictions (pornography) are all socially acceptable and legal entities making it difficult for the addicted person to accept that there is something wrong with them. Following that would be all illegal drugs.
What is the easiest?
All addictions are easy to overcome when one invites the Lord Jesus Christ into one’s life.
Phil 4:13 “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” John 8:36 “Therefore if the Son makes you free, you are free indeed.”
How long does it take to ‘get clean?’
Instantly, the moment you stop using drugs and accept the Lord Jesus Christ into your life, your addiction stops. 2 Cor 5:17. “Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.” It is renewing of the mind that takes time. Rom 12:2. “And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.” That is the reason for a 2-year program at Noupoort Christian Care Centre.
What is your success rate?
For those who have successfully completed their 52 weeks program, the success rate is 76-80%. On completion of the 2-year program it is in excess of 95%.
What do you think causes kids to experiment with drugs in the first place?
Curiosity, peer pressure, adventure, excitement, to belong to the “in crowd”.
How can it be avoided?
Better prevention through educational programmes in crèches, nursery schools, primary and high schools, tertiary institutions, media and churches. Improving policing without glamorising drugs and alcohol. The media need to reflect the horrific side of falling prey to the various addictions e.g. young girls prostituting, abused, molested, assaulted, living on the streets begging, effects of overdosing, intensive care, imprisonment, drug trafficking and finally, mortuaries.
How do parents know that their child is experimenting
with drugs?
• Mood swings
 (depression, rebelliousness, aggressiveness).
• Manipulation  (wanting large sums of money)
• Thefts of house hold items, losing clothes.
• Compulsive lying
• Being vague regarding new friends.
• Lack of motivation, skipping school
• Change in eating and sleeping patterns
• Sudden weight loss
• Hygiene deteriorates.
How should a parent react if the child confesses to using drugs?
The parent must react in calm manner, be responsible yet firm, offering realistic solutions. We have ‘U-Can’ support groups in most of the major cities to assist parents. For further enquiries contact Linda Rostron on cell number (082) 520 1288 to assist in making the right decisions.
What percentage of kids coming to Noupoort used Ritalin as a child?
Is there a possible connection, in your opinion?
Yes, I believe if it’s taken in excess. Professor Andre Venter (Department of Pediatrics and Child Care at Bloemfontein University) mentions that it is impossible to walk into a pharmacy and buy Ritalin over the counter. In South Africa, as in most other countries, its prescription is strictly controlled. It is a schedule 6 drug along with amphetamines and drugs like Rohepnol. Cocaine used to fall into the same category until it was prohibited. Dr Peter Breggin, who heads up the International Centre for the study of Psychiatry and Psychology in the United States, and has written several books on drugs like Ritalin states: “All the classic stimulants have very similar effects on the brain. Ritalin, Amphetamine, Methanphetamine and cocaine all affect the same three neurotransmitter systems in the exact same parts of animals given these drugs. The reason you see more euphoria with cocaine is because people snort it or take it by other methods, which are highly concentrated, and it is also more potent. But when people start doing things with Ritalin, like snorting it, you get the same kind of euphoric effects and in fact cocaine addicts will use Ritalin and amphetamine if they have to.”
Go with what you know as a parent – do you want your child smoking dope or smoking cigarettes? Do you want your child taking alcohol or stimulant medication? The answer should be no,no,no! Dr Rosemary Tonetti, a doctor and Medical Director of Novartis, the pharmaceutical company that manufactures Ritalin, says if taken orally and as prescribed, the medicine doesn’t have the same effect as cocaine. Codeine is also being irresponsibly prescribed by many doctors. Codeine is in fact a chemical heroin and is banned in many countries. It cannot even be obtained on prescription. It is frightening to see toddlers being treated with codeine e.g. cold and flu, medication such as pain stop syrups. One must ask the question then:Why are our teenagers experimenting with heroin? Could this be one of the reasons why the youth of today turn towards illegal drugs?
Do you think Psychiatrists and Doctors are aware of this?
Yes, I’m sure they are. Their argument would be most medicines have contra indications if not taken or administered properly.
As the biggest Drug Rehabilitation center in South Africa, has anyone from the medical profession ever asked you about this?
Never – it could be bad for their business…It would be like a drug dealer coming to us asking if it is bad to sell drugs.
In treating drugs addicts, does community service help?
I believe it helps as part of a supervised programme for recovering addicts. Sharing their frightening and devastating experience with the community and schools at large, benefits both the recovering addict and community.
Does physical hard work help?
It all depends on what you mean by hard work. Do you work hard? Work should be a symbol of achievement and self worth. Work is to be enjoyed by the participants. Idle hands are the devils play ground. Gen 3:19 “In the sweat of your face you shall eat bread till you return to the ground, for out of it you were taken; for dust you are, and to dust you shall return”. 2 Thess 3:10 “For even when we were with you, we commanded you this; If anyone will not work, neither shall he eat.”
What is the ‘average’ spiritual condition of your patients upon entering the rehab?
On a scale of 1 to 10, not higher than 2.
You preach the Gospel to all the patients that come to Noupoort – how many actually accept Christ as Lord and Saviour?
Only God really knows the answer to that question. We base our success rate on the acceptance of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Are the statistics of their chances of recovery much higher?
Noupoort Christian Care Centre has a success rate of 76% as previously stated. The chances are definitely higher when a faith-based programme is adopted.
Do many patients object to hearing the Gospel?
No, the residents do not object. They are fully informed of the methodology of the N.C.C.C programme before admission, which clearly states that Jesus Christ and the Word of God is the foundation of the recovery for the addict.
Do you give patients Bibles?
All residents are to bring the New King James version upon arrival. For residents who cannot afford a Bible, we will supply one.
Is there any help you would like to receive from the broader Christian community?
Yes definitely. Instead of the body of Christ criticising and distancing themselves from N.C.C.C by listening to negative reports from the enemies of the Lord Jesus Christ, let them come and visit and see for themselves this unique front line ministry that absolutely refuses to compromise the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ. The Church needs to understand that persecution is part and parcel of doing something right for God. We welcome intercessory prayer groups for this unique and special ministry. The burning desire to offer their services in helping bring the lost to the Lord Jesus Christ is of paramount importance. The Church needs to understand that N.C.C.C is a mission field for the lost and of the lost and N.C.C.C is running way below the capacity of what it could handle. The Church needs to set up a fund for this unique ministry, which is ministering to people that the Church would never reach. Although we are the most inexpensive recovery programmes in South Africa there are thousands that cannot afford our programme. Although we are not Government sponsored, we do sponsor as many as we can possibly afford.
Let us join hands and do something constructive instead of destructive to save the youth of our nation. Our outreach programme namely A2J (Addicted to Jesus generation) is willing to visit your church, schools, town, suburb and city to share and educate the young and old on the horrific dangers of the drugs which are freely available on our streets and school grounds. For enquiries please contact Linda Rostron on 082-520 1288.

Backslider: Come Back to Christ!

Backslider: Come Back to Christ!
Frustration and dissatisfaction are the first symptoms of a backslider.  No matter how deeply hidden inside, there is that despondent recognition that he is missing out on the abundant life Christ came to give.  There is that uncomfortable realisation that he is rejecting Christ’s love.   The backslider knows that he is out of touch with God and that his once treasured relationship with the Lord has ceased.  He is beginning to wonder if he will ever again experience the joy of fellowship with Jesus, the confidence of being in the centre of God’s Will, the peace of mind that comes from knowing that everything is working together for good, and that inexpressible fulfillment of being in contact with and union with Jesus.
Troubles of the world
How could anyone who has experienced God’s perfect Will settle for second best?  What on earth could have made you give up?  Why did you fall away from Jesus and settle for the world?  Was it public opinion, group pressure, or social acceptance that troubled you?  Did you find the going too hard or the requirements too tough?  Was the opposition too strong or the temptation too great?
Why do you settle for less than God’s best for you?
 It is a tragic fact that in the spiritual warfare (Eph 6:10 – 18) of Christian life there are many casualties.  That is why Jesus taught us to follow in His footsteps (1 Pet 2:21) because the devil’s landmines are never found in the middle of God’s road (Isa 35:8 – 10). As long as we stay in God’s perfect Will we can weather the storms and assaults with safety (Matt 7:24 – 27).  It is because of the very real danger of the enemy (1 Pet 5:8, 9) that the Word of God urges us to put on the full “armour of God.”
The Lord Jesus warned us that those who receive the Gospel in a superficial way and do not lay a solid foundation of full commitment will fall away (Mark 4:3 – 20).  Those who only want the blessings and benefits are not willing to pay the cost and make the sacrifices.  They will not last long (Luke 14:27 – 33).
Jesus further warned us that those who allow sin to remain in their lives (1 John 3:8) and do not repent of it and root it out, will find that, just as the thorns choke the plants, so these sins will undermine and strangle their spiritual lives (Matt 13:7).
Then, the Bible clearly warns of the dangers of bring concerned with what others think of you (Prov 29:25) as that tempts us to compromise on principle and follow their example rather than the Lord’s (John 13:15).  We must live to please God not men (John 8:29). Dual loyalties also undermine our devotion to the Lord (Matt 6:24).  Whatever comes between ourselves and the Lord must be rooted out and forsaken (Heb 12:1).  If money, or ambition, or friends, or materials things, or education, or politics, or desires receive more attention and importance than the Lord does, then we must choose which will be our god (Josh 24:15, 19).  Jesus is either Lord of ALL or He is not Lord at all.
All too often the problem is that the backslider neglected his spiritual life.  The Word of God is to our souls what food is to our bodies.  Nobody can survive spiritually without feeding on the Word of God (Matt 4:4).
You can become a spiritual skeleton by neglecting regular, prayerful and obedient study of God’s Word (James 1:25).
Also, the place of prayer in the Christian life can be compared with the place of breathing in our physical lives.  It is essential.  Just as a man who stops breathing can expect to die, so also a Christian who does not pray can expect to turn blue and turn into a rotting spiritual corpse within a few weeks (Luke 18:1).
The Bible clearly records the failings of even God’s greatest men.  All of them failed God and fell away from Him at some time in their lives.  For example:
Adam fell by disobedience (Rom 5:12 and Gen 3:1 – 6)Israel fell through unbelief (Rom 9:32)Saul stubbornly rebelled against God (1 Sam 15:22, 23)Samson slept in the lap of his enemy (Judg 16:19) David committed adultery and murder (1 Sam 11) Peter denied Jesus (Luke 22:55 – 62) Thomas doubted Jesus
Nevertheless, it is not God’s practice to bayonet His wounded troops.  We are in a spiritual warfare, casualties are inevitable and the Lord has made provision for us to return and be restored.
The Word of God challenges us:
“Will they fall and not rise? Will one turn away and not return?” Jer 8:4
In Luke 15, Jesus gives hope to all those suffering in a backslidden state through three precious parables:
In The Parable of the lost sheep: Jesus told us that, if you’re part of His flock, and you go astray and become lost, He will search for you and He will not rest until He has found you.  You belong to Him.  He died for you.  He will bring you back to the safety and security of His flock.
In The Parable of the lost son: He tells how you are always welcome in your Father’s house, and that there is great joy in God’s heart as He welcomes back a backslidden son or daughter.  No sin is so great – God’s grace is greater still. 
In The Parable of the lost coin: He tells how precious you are to God.
David repented of his sin (Ps 51) and returned to God to serve Him the rest of his life (2 Sam 12).
Peter was restored and served Jesus powerfully among the Jews, dieing for Jesus on an upside-down cross (John 21:15 – 19).
Thomas continued as an Apostle serving Jesus extensively in Persia and India to die as a martyr for Christ near Madras (John 20:28, 29).
How then can one return to the Lord?
God tells us in His Word:
“And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.” Jer 28:13
“‘Now therefore,’ says the Lord, ‘Turn to Me with all your heart, with fasting, with weeping, and with mourning.’  So rend your heart, and not your garments; return to the Lord your God, for He is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness; and He relents from doing harm.” Joel 2: 12 – 13
“‘For the Lord has called you like a woman forsaken and grieved in spirit, like a youthful wife when you were refused,’ says your God. ‘For a mere moment I have forsaken you, but with great mercies I will gather you. With a little wrath I hid My face from you for a moment; but with everlasting kindness I will have mercy on you,’ says the Lord, your Redeemer.” Isa 54:6 – 8
“All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will by no means cast out.” John 6:37
“Seek the Lord while He may be found, call upon Him while He is near.  Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts; let him return to the Lord, and He will have mercy on him; and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon.” Isa 55:6 – 7
If you want to return to the Lord your God then pray right now.  Open your Bible to Psalm 51 and pray that prayer sincerely, meaning every word of it, and then look up the following helpful verses to show you the way ahead: Heb 7:25; 1 John 2:1, 2; 1 John 1:9; Phil 1:6; Phil 2:13; 1 Pet 4:2 – 5 (and as far as dealing with temptation see 1 Cor 10:13; 1 John 4:4; James 4:7).
You will never be satisfied, at peace within yourself, until you do what you know is right: turn from your sins and turn to God.
“Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, and to present you faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy, to God our Saviour, who alone is wise, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and forever.  Amen.” Jude 24,25

Darwin’s Deadly Legacy

Darwin’s Deadly Legacy
Poland was still behind the Iron Curtain then…  It was the summer of 1972, and I was travelling to that country with student colleagues.  Our  tertiary course involved Marxism, and we wanted to see something of its implications in practice.
Entering East Germany en route, I felt a certain sense of excitement; I had not penetrated the ‘Berlin Wall’ before.  ‘No-man’s Land’ and the ugly prison defences separating East and West Germany were chilling.
Even more chilling was the concentration camp of Auschwitz in southern Poland.  I saw hair, spectacles and teeth piled high, and the gas chambers where thousands of victims were mercilessly destroyed.  It was summer, but the birds did not sing.  There was death in the air.  A Polish boy who acted as our guide whispered, ‘My grandparents died in this camp.  It is my duty to let people know what happened.’
A grim ideology
Three years later, my wife and I went to visit an East German pen-friend, Dorothea, who was not allowed to visit us.  Once again, we traversed ‘No-man’s Land’ and went beyond the Berlin Wall—this time feeling very vulnerable.
We have been many times since.  On one occasion we asked our friend, “Do you ever see the situation changing?”  The answer was a short “No”, but her resigned look of despair spoke more eloquently.
I trust you can imagine the tears and the joy that flowed in November 1989 when the Wall came down.  The prison doors had broken open and our friends were free!
Yet lingering beneath the surface was a question that would not go away.  I had seen the horrific impact of Nazism on the life of a nation.  I had then experienced the similarly grim effect of a different ideology—Communism.  Why had such enormous evil been unleashed upon so many people?
Un-scientific logic
In those years since my first visit to Poland, I sought to understand Marxism and Nazism, and what shaped the worldviews that had justified the horrific actions that I had witnessed.  I discovered a common denominator.
Marxism, so I learnt, sought to be scientific.  It was anchored in a social and economic theory that was believed to mirror the true history of life.  Central to that theory was the struggle between the class that owned the means of production (the capitalist ‘bourgeoisie’) and the working class (the ‘proletariat’) that did not. 
Evil, in the socialist worldview, is the oppression of the working class by the bourgeoisie.  Having been enlightened by Marx regarding the ‘true history of life’, men and women could now take control of that history.  They could accelerate ‘nature’ as it sped towards its goal of a world revolution that would banish such ‘evil’ and produce a socialist utopia. Hitler, I discovered, shared a similar worldview, as outlined in his book, Mein Kampf (literally ‘My struggle’).  He believed that people, like animals and plants, were engaged in a constant struggle for survival.  The climax of history would be the survival of the fittest race- which he believed to be the ‘Aryan race’, as embodied by the German people.
Hitler and Stalin both applied their ‘scientific’ logic with a ruthless, overwhelming determination.  So did Mao Zedong in China, where countless millions also perished in the name of a utopian Marxist dream.  And they not only convinced themselves, but millions of others – people just like you and me – that they were right to do so.
But where did these ideas come from?  What was the ‘scientific’ basis for such evil?
Undermining the Bible
Hitler’s understanding of the history of life, and that of Marx, Stalin and Mao, was not devised by a German, Russian, or Chinese.  It was shaped by an Englishman named Charles Darwin.
Darwin’s book, ‘On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, Or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life’ (1859), laid the groundwork for their worldviews.  They each applied the principle of ‘survival of the fittest’ to their own situation. 
For Marx and Stalin it was class struggle; for Hitler it was racial struggle.  And because Darwinism under­mined the authority of the Bible on origins, it meant that, logically, there was no accountability to God for the mass murder they used to implement their ideas.  In fact, such tactics could be justified by Darwinism.  Without an absolute standard of right and wrong, those in power are not accountable to any standard.  So ‘might’ becomes ‘right’. 
As Darwin’s evolutionary thinking became widely welcomed and absorbed by society, it not only convinced leaders like Marx and Hitler, but it became a ‘scientific’ framework justifying the public acceptance of their actions for the ‘benefit’ of all humanity.
Sheer destruction
Over the years, I have visited East Germany, Poland, Czechoslovakia and Hungary.  I have become accustomed to seeing crude and faceless residential slab blocks encircling towns and cities.  Recently, I visited Romania as well.  I was not surprised to see the same thing in her capital city, Bucharest—which was at one time called ‘Little Paris’. 
The sheer scale of the des­truction was a shock, not only around Bucharest, but at its very heart.  I listened to a Romanian woman whose family home had disappeared to make way for the Grand Avenue that leads to the People’s Palace of (now-deposed) communist dictator, Nicolae Ceausescu. 
As I walked the length of this cultural wasteland, I found it difficult to articulate the depth of sadness I was feeling.  I was seeing the impact of Darwin’s thinking, as interpreted through Sov­iet dictator, Joseph Stalin, and then Roman­ian leader, Ceausescu, on the life of yet another nation. 
Frightning in practice
On the Sunday of my visit I shared these thoughts with a group of Christians in Bucharest.  As an English­man, I could only stand before them and express immense regret for what one of my countrymen had released into an unsuspecting world.
Hitler was wrong.  Stalin was wrong.  Ceausescu was wrong.  Darwin’s theory, upon which those tyrants based their actions, was wrong, too.  The evidence was before my eyes; its radical effect on the lives of everyone I was speaking to.  For them it was not just an interesting theory, but a frightening practice.
At the same time, however, I was also able to point them to Someone who was right, not just in theory but also in practice.  He understood the true history of the world and the true nature of life, because He created it (John 1:1–3).  
That person is Jesus Christ, God in the flesh (John 8:58).  He came to Earth to verify and fulfil statements that He had made in earlier times concerning the beginning of life.  He added to it with inspired insight into what is yet to come.  And He validated all this by rising from the dead.
The solution is Christ
On that Sunday, I referred to a passage from John’s Gospel, chapter 10, where Jesus said, ‘I tell you the truth … the thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; but I have come so that they may have life, and have it to the full’ John 10:1, 10.
That same Jesus is the Word (John 1:1) who has spoken into history from its very beginning.  ‘In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth … God created man in His own image … God saw all that He had made, and it was very good … Thus the heavens and the earth were completed in all their vast array’ Gen 1:1, 27, 31, 2:1.
We do not come from chaos, ascend­ing via ‘survival of the fittest’ to reach a utopia of our own making.  We come from perfection, through failure into pain and death – which came into being when our first parents sought to exclude God; just as Darwin, and then Hitler, Stalin and Ceausescu have done these years since.
Each of these was wrong about the past; this is evident in the death and destruction their ideas wrought.  But Jesus was right – as is equally evident in the good fruit of His own life.
They were also wrong about the future.  The Utopian dream will not be fulfilled by man, but by God.  History is heading towards ‘that day’ – the promised new heavens and new earth, which follows the death of death and the destruction of the ‘old’ (2 Peter 3:10). 
All those who love Jesus can look forward to the heavenly Marriage Feast of the Lamb of God (Rev. 19) – of which all marriages and all positive relationships are but a foretaste.  Those new heavens and that new earth will be the home of the people who love Jesus, living together with Him for eternity in a relationship that is rich, full and perfect.  And every tear – even those from Auschwitz and Bucharest – will be wiped away.
KARL MARX (1860)
The ‘spiritual father’ of the communist system, Marx was an avid adherent of Darwin. He combined his social and economic idea with evolutionary principles.  Marx wrote that Darwin’s book ‘contains the basis in natural history for our views.’  His disciple Lenin applied utter ruthlessness and terror in Russia—the term ‘rivers of blood’ has commonly been applied in describing his reign.
Fanatically committed to Darwinism and Marxism, communist leader Trotsky was brutal against the Christian church.  He said that Darwin’s ideas ‘intoxicated’ him, and ‘Darwin stood for me like a mighty doorkeeper at the entrance to the temple of the universe.’  With no Creator’s laws to restrain him and the justification of evolution, he felt free to use any means to attain power and political ends.
The world’s worst mass-murderer studied at Tiflis (Tbilisi) Georgia, theological college.  A friend later said Stalin became an atheist after reading Darwin.  He was expelled from the college at 19 because of his revolutionary connections.  After understanding that evolution provided no basis for conscience or morals, he felt free to torture and murder to whatever extent he chose to achieve his communist goals.
Formed his racial and social policies on the evolutionary ideas of Survival of the Fittest and the superiority of certain ‘favoured races’ (as in the subtitle of Darwin’s book).  Hitler’s reign resulted in the murder of six million Jews as well as many blacks, gypsies, the retarded, and other groups deemed unfit to live.  The evolutionary ‘science’ of Eugenics provided him with justification for his decrees.
POL POT (1975)
The death in 1998 of Cambodia’s Pol Pot marked the end of one of the world’s worst mass murderers.  From 1975 he led the Khmer Rouge to genocide against his own people in a bloodthirsty regime which was inspired by the communism of Stalin and China’s notorious Mao Zedong. Chairman Mao is known to have regarded Darwin and his disciple Huxley as his two favourite authors.