For any of you that read my column regularly, you may recall that back in April of this year I wrote a column about an attempt to bring a replica of the arch from the entrance to the Temple of Baal in Palmyra, Syria to New York City. If you didn’t see it and would like to read it you can find it on my churches web site, at www.orbynaz.com, under the heading, “Pastor’s articles”. The arch was one of the few things left standing after ISIS blew it up last year. The plans were for one to be erected in Times Square and another in Trafalgar Square in London, England, and then perhaps 1,000 more would follow in cities around the globe. The one in London was erected, but we rejoiced that enough prayer and negative press about it had caused the erection of the one in New York City to be cancelled. To attempt to erect a monument of worship to the false god Baal in our most important city in America should have upset every Christian and Jew in America. The worship of Baal was the reason for Israel’s downfall many times in the Old Testament, and it was certainly not something we should want to celebrate! I’m sorry to have to tell you, if you haven’t heard that those plans were completed on Sept. 21. They did not succeed in erecting it in Times Square, as was originally planned, but in New York City’s Hall Park, instead. They sneaked it in without the fanfare of the last try in April and it was unveiled on Sept. 21. I watched a video of the unveiling and my heart did not rejoice over what I saw! How long it will remain there, I do not know, but I pray it will not be too long. It was said when they unveiled it that it was fitting to put it up in New York City because of the architectural losses they suffered there on 9/11, mainly from the loss of the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center. What they did fail to mention was that the only thing the destruction of the Palmyra Arch and New York City’s architectural losses had in common was Islamic extremism. Islamic terrorists brought down the World Trade Center by crashing planes into them, while ISIS blew up the Temple of Baal in Syria when they moved into Palmyra. See if you can remember what happened to America as this was about to be unveiled. A series of terrorist bombs went off in New York City and in New Jersey, harming a number of people, and an ISIS terrorist went on a stabbing spree in a mall in Minnesota. That was some coincidence, huh? You didn’t expect good things to happen, did you? I believe God is using ISIS to judge Europe, and I believe the same thing will happen to us if we keep doing stuff like this. God is lifting His hand of protection off of America and most, even many in the church, are too blind to see it! The same day the Arch was unveiled from under the huge sheet covering it in New York City, Sept. 19, the high school in O’Donnell, Texas took measures to cover with a sheet a painting of the 10 Commandments that had been displayed there at the high school for years. The Freedom From Religion organization was threatening the school with a law suit, and the principal caved in to the pressure. But in defiance, kids at the school put pieces of paper on the sheet covering the 10 Commandments painting in a way that formed the word, GOD, on the sheet. How ironic and symbolic of what is happening to us! Anything pertaining to God and Christianity is being pushed out, while at the same time things as wicked as the Temple of Baal are being erected! In Jeremiah 23:9, the prophet Jeremiah expressed these sentiments over what was going on in his nation in his day tied to the worship of Baal, vs. 13: He said in vs. 9, “Mine heart within me is broken…all my bones shake.” Are you feeling any of the pain yet that Jeremiah must have felt as he watched his beloved nation turn its back on God? If you aren’t feeling any pain yet, then you’re part of the problem—apathy! Somebody says, apathy, what’s that? I don’t know and I don’t care! You just defined apathy and we dare not allow it to control us, or God will be just as unhappy with us as He is with those who would bring the Temple of Baal to America or cover the 10 Commandments in Texas! I don’t expect the world to care, but even some of them are alarmed at some of the terrible things that are taking place in America. Surely God’s people ought to be feeling the pain and calling on the Lord to help our once great nation before it goes down the sewer completely! Are you feeling any pain for our great land?