A Christian pilgrim prays as she attends a mass commemorating the lives lost in the explosion. (AP)

A Christian pilgrim prays as she attends a mass commemorating the lives lost in the explosion. (AP)

Lebanese citizens were already upset at the government for its corruption. The explosion has sparked more anger. (AP)

Lebanese citizens were already upset at the government for its corruption. The explosion has sparked more anger. (AP)

A woman takes pictures of a damaged church. (AP)

A woman takes pictures of a damaged church. (AP)

People pray as they attend a Sunday mass at Saint Maron-Baouchrieh Church. Church leaders say, “God saved us.” (AP)

People pray as they attend a Sunday mass at Saint Maron-Baouchrieh Church. Church leaders say, “God saved us.” (AP)

Angry . . . but Forgiving

Posted: November 1, 2020

Church-goer Fadi Saadeh was injured in the massive Beirut blast. He is bandaged and heartbroken. He asks, “Should I forgive or not?”

Many Lebanese people were angry with their government before the blast even happened. Now they’re furious. Some want to get rid of their leaders. Protesters say politicians should resign and be punished for ignoring such a dangerous problem.

Michel Aoun is Lebanon’s president. He said an investigation will try to uncover what caused the blast. Did someone set off a bomb? Or was it all an accident?

Officials say the blast may have created $15 billion in damage. It’s hard to imagine such a large amount of money. That much cash could buy you a castle, a jet, a private island, a lot of cool cars, and you’d still have plenty left over. Lebanon can’t afford that kind of expense. The nation was already deeply in debt.

Do any Bible verses come to mind when you think about Lebanon? How about “When the righteous increase, the people rejoice, but when the wicked rule, the people groan”? (Proverbs 29:2) It’s hard to find a good side to the tragedy in Lebanon. But we know God is sovereignly working there for the good of His people. This could be a bright spot: The explosion exposed corruption in the Lebanese government. It revealed its close ties to a terrorist group called Hezbollah. Now the Lebanese government may be forced to cut those ties. Also, the explosion created a city full of deeply needy people. Lebanese Christians—and Christians around the world—have an amazing opportunity to bring relief to them.

“If we did not have faith in God, we would not come to church,” says Mr. Saadeh. “We came here to ask God to forgive them.”

Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you. — Luke 6:27