If you live in West Texas, you’ve been invaded by moths at least once in your life. Thankfully, I’m not one who is freaked out by their fluttering, dusty selves– but they can be irritating.
One morning, as I sat down in my favorite chair for some quiet time with God, I was distracted by a moth banging around in the lamp over my head. In a moment of frustration, I got up, grabbed a kleenix and captured the insane moth. (And please don’t hate me, but) without thinking twice, I squeezed the kleenix and heard the crack of his little body as I crushed him.
It was innocent, I promise. But as I “squashed him like a bug” I suddenly thought, you know some people think this is how God deals with people.
Job is a perfect example of this line of thinking: “For He crushed me with a tempest, and multiplies my wounds without cause” (Job 9:17). And he’s not the only one: “The Lord has trampled underfoot all my mighty men in my midst; He has called an assembly against me to crush my young men; The Lord trampled as in a winepress the virgin daughter of Judah” (Lamentations 1:15). The writer of Lamentations was weeping for the destruction of his people and assumed God did it with eager zealousness.
And poor Job. His feelings got the best of his tongue for awhile, and until God got his attention, his doctrine was way off! Thankfully, his heart knew better and when his eyes were opened, he turned his thinking around and praised God for His love and mercy.
What’s interesting however, is that God’s true desire to “crush” something actually has nothing to do with you or I. In a warning to the Romans to avoid divisive people, the Apostle Paul revealed who God really wants to crush:
“Now I urge you, brethren, note those who cause divisions and offenses, contrary to the doctrine which you learned, and avoid them. For those who are such do not serve our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly, and by smooth words and flattering speech deceive the hearts of the simple. For your obedience has become known to all. Therefore I am glad on your behalf; but I want you to be wise in what is good, and simple concerning evil. And the God of peace will crush Satan under your feet shortly. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. Amen” (Romans 16:17-20).
Notice it wasn’t the divisive people God wanted to crush, but the one behind their rebellion– Satan himself.
Our God is a God of peace. Satan is behind all destruction. “The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy” (John 10:10a). Jesus said Satan doesn’t come except to do these things. He’s the destroyer, not God.
So the next time you think (or hear someone else elude to the idea that) God wants to crush us like bugs– get your Bible out and read the Gospel. Jesus said, “I have come that they may have LIFE, and that they may have it more abundantly” (John 10:10b).