Power

25 06 2008

John Simpson has a very interesting article on the BBC News Website, relating to Robert Mugabe’s ability to cling to power in Zimbabwe. For my part I think Simpson is too hard on Morgan Tsvangirai and the opposition, given the dreadful inhumanity to which they have been exposed in recent days. Of chief interest, however, is the way in which the article describes Mugabe’s continued stay in office:

“His opponent, Morgan Tsvangirai, has been completely outmanoeuvred. The outside world, which mostly sympathises with him, can do nothing whatever to help him…It all adds up to a remarkable sweeping victory for a man who only three months ago seemed to be on the ropes. The moral is clear: never underestimate Robert Mugabe’s ferocious determination to stay in power, nor the ability of his political opponents to destroy their own case”.

How disappointing this turn of events must be for Zimbabweans, and particularly for the MDC, and how unassailable Mugabe’s position appears to be at present.

Just after reading Simpson’s sentiments, however, I turned to Scripture and to Spurgeon’s comments on Psalm 75:1-5. There a different picture is painted of power, one which holds God at the centre, and not men like Mugabe with their malice and manipulation. Spurgeon writes of God’s Sovereignty in exultant terms:

“Even now he is actually judging. His seat is not vacant: his authority is not abdicated; the Lord reigns evermore. Empires rise and fall at his bidding. A dungeon here, and there a throne, his will assigns. Assyria yields to Babylon, and Babylon to the Medes. Kings are but puppets in his hand; they serve his purpose when they rise and when they fall. God only is; all power belongs to him; all else is shadow, coming and going, unsubstantial, misty, dreamlike.”

I much prefer Spurgeon over Simpson, sovereignty over the schemes of man, God’s righteous providence rather than man’s random posturing. Even though chaos, financial freefall, and electoral farce appear to characterise Zimbabwe at present, God is still on the throne, achieving His purposes and storing judgement for those pretending to a power and authority which bear no accountability to Him.

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