Delivered From The Lion
September 25, 2002 • By Ed Wrather
But the Lord stood with me and strengthened me, so that the message might be preached fully through me, and that all the Gentiles might hear. Also I was delivered out of the mouth of the lion. And the Lord will deliver me from every evil work and preserve me for His heavenly kingdom. To Him be glory forever and ever. Amen! - 2 Timothy 4:17-18.
In South Africa, Kimberly Thomen of Sugarland, Texas ended up in the mouth of a lion. Kimberly was on a tour of South Africa and visiting the Leshoka Thabang Game Lodge in Limpopo when she was attacked. She got off a game-viewing vehicle to pet one of three young lions after being assured that it was safe. She was petting one of the lions when the lion clawed her; she screamed, and then the other lions joined the attack. The tour guide began trying to pull the lions off and eventually the young lions stopped their attack. Thomen received wounds all over her body and a bite wound to her neck, but Kimberly is expected to recover from her wounds.
How many times have we been told that some dangerous thing is safe? How many young people have succumbed to having sex outside of marriage believing that a condom will protect them from pregnancy and sexual disease only to find out that it was not safe at all? There is a contraceptive failure rate of 18.4 percent for girls under age 18. And among young, unmarried, minority women the annual failure rate is 36.3 percent; among unmarried Hispanic women, it is as high as 44.5 percent (Statistics from lovematters.com).
Condoms provide even less protection against sexually transmitted disease. Dr. Robert Renfield, chief of retro-viral research, Walter Reed Army Institute says, “Simply put, condoms fail. And condoms fail at a rate unacceptable for me as a physician to endorse them as a strategy to be promoted as meaningful AIDS protection.” Dr. Teresa Crenshaw, member of the U.S. Presidential AIDS Commission and past president of the American Association of Sex Educators says, “Saying that the use of condoms is ‘safe sex’ is, in fact, playing Russian roulette. A lot of people will die in this dangerous game.”
Many have also been told that alcohol and illegally used substances are not dangerous. Here are just a few of the dangers of alcohol: nervous system depressant, affects almost every organ of the body, alters perceptions, hinders coordination, blocks memory functions, can cause stomach ailments, can cause sexual impotence, can cause heart and central nervous system damage, causes damage to the liver and other organs, and can cause blackouts. Alcohol also interacts negatively with over 150 medications. Many young people die every year from alcohol poisoning and in the USA alcohol contributes to 100,000 deaths annually.
Even marijuana a relatively benign recreational drug in comparison to some other illegal drugs has some severe dangers. It is thought that marijuana suppresses the immune system leaving the body more susceptible to many illnesses (including cancer and AIDS). It is also thought that marijuana is the source of many mental disorders, including “acute toxic psychosis, panic attacks (one of the very conditions it is being used experimentally to treat), flashbacks, delusions, depersonalization, hallucinations, paranoia, depression, and uncontrollable aggressiveness. Marijuana has long been known to trigger attacks of mental illness, such as bipolar (manic-depressive) psychosis and schizophrenia http://cyber.law.harvard.edu/evidence99/marijuana/Health_1.html).”
The lions are everywhere, and they are seeking to destroy you (1 Peter 5:8). There is a way to keep from being devoured by the lions, and if the lion has you in its mouth, there is a way out. That way out is to turn to the Lord Jesus and commit your life totally and completely to Him just as the apostle Paul did. Then you will find that the Lord will drag those lions off, and He will strengthen, and stand with you to defend you “from every evil work and preserve (you) us for His heavenly kingdom.”