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Letters, feedback, etc.

Issue: "Iraq: Unity in adversity," Feb. 12, 2005

Merciful truth

Thank you to John Piper for providing a truthful response to the tsunami ("Mercy for the living," Jan. 15). The Chicago Tribune devoted a page of its paper several weeks ago to the responses of various clergy from various religions to this calamity. They left me empty. I wish they had asked for Mr. Piper's. After reading his article, I am now full of truth, understanding, and Scripture. But, most of all, I am full of repentance.
-Karen Blaauw; South Holland, Ill.

John Piper's column on the providence of God in the tsunami tragedy hits the mark. It's wonderful that WORLD turns to Pastor Piper when events call for us to understand God's sovereignty and our need to repent.
-Genie Ragin; Cumming, Ga.

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I understand Mr. Piper's desire to find "design" in the pain. Yet, it is impossible to imagine God causing this torrent of suffering. I do not believe God would deliver a "call to repent" in the form of death and destruction.
-Ann Kohl; San Antonio, Texas

The most terrible tragedies on the planet are results of man's misuse of his free will. So man is terribly hypocritical to point his bloody fingers at God, accusing Him of injustice, while ignoring his own guilt and responsibility to stop the greatest tragedies on earth, such as abortion and the incredible suffering in Sudan.
-Eugene A. Brumbaugh; Silva, Mo.

Second place

That the earthquake "caused the very Earth to wobble on its axis, to lose a fraction of a second and to force global positioning satellites into recalibration" caused me to catch my breath and pause in awe ("Cataclysm," Jan. 15). But I would submit that it was the second-largest natural disaster in recorded history, after the Flood.
-Kathryn Hendrix; Knoxville, Tenn.

Real tragedy

The "how could God allow this?" question implies an expectation that God should have prevented the bad thing from happening ("Shhhhh!" Jan. 15). Do we expect God to prevent every bad thing from happening? That would require God to destroy every sinner or to take away our free will. When so many people die in such a way, our sense of tragedy and injustice is so great. Yet the real tragedy is this: Yesterday, today, or tomorrow, we all must die, because we are all under that curse.
-Kevin Braun; West Chester, Pa.

It is not up to us to think that we have to know everything God allows. We need to make sure we know our own destiny through sins forgiven in Jesus Christ. Focused on Him daily, I can then respond to the tragedies.
-James Tozier; Dedham, Mass.

Stand and fight

Mr. Veith's column, "Our two towers" (Jan. 15), struck a resounding chord with this hobbit. It is rare these days to read anyone who has the courage to draw battle lines. Instead we speak of the "peaceful religion of Islam" and make every effort to "reach out across the aisle." Oh, for a leader like King Theoden who, after he was informed that he could not defeat his enemies through force of arms, did not step down the rhetoric, or seek for a pragmatic compromise, or speak of the next elections. Instead, he set his jaw like a flint and snarled, "but we shall meet them in battle nonetheless!"
-Robert McKinley; Greenville, S.C.

While watching The Return of the King at home, we noticed aspects of Tolkien's "allegory," especially when King-to-be Aragorn exhorts his army: "I bid you stand, men of the West!" We just love it.
-Alessandra Hernandez, 14; Alexandria, Va.

One has to wonder if Tolkien realized his Lord of the Rings characters Saruman and Sauron represented Western intellectual liberalism and totalitarianism. It is very curious that libertine left-wingers would embrace murderous Islamic-fascism, a marriage made in hell that is tantamount to a death wish. Our leftist friends better be careful what they wish for. They just might get it.
-Ron Mele; Pinson, Ala.

As a public-university student, I am exposed to the subtle wiles of contemporary Sarumans on a daily basis. Surprisingly, the greatest attack on Christianity comes not from blatantly liberal government professors nor evolutionary science classes. Nihilism is most rampant in lectures on literature, psychology, history, or any other discipline where Christians have let down their guard. After the miraculous destruction of Sauron, our victory over darkness will not be complete until we have scourged the Shire.
-Emmilee J. Peterson, 17; Spokane, Wash.

Wave upon wave

With about a million abortions in the United States each year and now more than 200,000 people killed in the tsunami, about every 10 weeks Americans abort enough babies to equal the number of tsunami victims. Thanks for reminding us of this bloody tidal wave of grief ("Two tidal waves," Jan. 15).
-Larry Bottemiller; Cottage Grove, Ore.


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