Hope for Syria’s Children
Ten years after the start of the Syrian civil war, the situation for Syria’s children is worse than ever, according to a report released by the United Nations Children’s Fund (unicef) on March 10. In the past year alone, 511 children were killed and 699 were injured. Since the beginning of the war, around 12,000 children have been killed or injured. As many as 6 million depend on humanitarian aid. Since these numbers only reflect the reported cases, the reality could be far worse.
Managing director of unicef–Germany, Christian Schneider, said, “Even with the violence subsiding, there is no breathing space in sight for the children.”
According to the recent report, the conflict has “led to one of the worst educational disasters in recent history.” Almost 2.5 million children in Syria and 750,000 refugee girls and boys in neighboring countries are unable to attend school. Without proper education, the hope for their future is bleak, even if they survive the war.
Spiegel Online noted that many parents are unable to feed their children. Recent estimates indicate that half a million Syrian children are suffering from chronic malnutrition. In their desperation, many children have even joined armed groups. German Federal Development Minister Gerd Müller lamented that an entire generation of Syrian children know “nothing but fear and need.”
We live in the most technologically advanced age in human history. Yet we are unable to find a solution to war; in fact, crises are only getting worse. Late theologian Herbert W. Armstrong asked in Mystery of the Ages: “Why do we find a world of awesome advancement and progress, yet paradoxically with appalling and mounting evils? Why cannot the minds that develop spacecraft, computers and marvels of science, technology and industry solve the problems that demonstrate human helplessness?”
This paradox puzzles many today. Yet we continue to look to the wrong source for the solution.
Many see Germany’s increased involvement in Syria as the country’s only hope. But as Trumpet editor in chief Gerald Flurry explained in “How the Syrian Crisis Will End,” this hope is flawed and ill-placed. “For Germany, Syria’s revolution isn’t about a humanitarian crisis at all,” Mr. Flurry wrote. “It’s about geopolitics and how Berlin can aggressively advance its strategic interests in the Middle East!” I encourage you to read Mr. Flurry’s article to understand Germany’s true intent in Syria.
Many see such suffering and wonder why God doesn’t intervene. Even the religions of this world don’t understand the reason. When Jesus Christ walked this Earth, He was moved with compassion at the suffering of this world. He said they were “as sheep having no shepherd” (Matthew 9:36). As long as mankind continues to look to men for solutions, you can expect crises and evils to only increase. Rather than looking to men, we should be looking to God. Only God knows how to solve the problems facing mankind.
The disciples understood Christ’s love for mankind and asked Him when He would return and bring an end to this present violent age (Matthew 24). Christ gave them a timeline of the events that would precede His Second Coming. He prophesied that we are now only seeing the “beginning of sorrows” and that wars will get so bad that “there should no flesh be saved” alive, unless God supernaturally intervenes (verse 22).
Christ knew that conditions would appear hopeless in these last days before His return. But wars, such as the ongoing carnage in Syria, actually indicate that His return is near! God’s ultimate plan for mankind is to save the overwhelming majority of human beings. If you understand that long-term plan, there is much reason to have hope. When Jesus Christ returns, the children in Syria will never again experience hunger. They will finally be given true education. Rather than only know fear and need, they will forever be offered joy and abundance. That’s the incredible hope for Syria’s children.
To understand the reason our world is full of suffering, read “Why Does God Allow Suffering?” And for more on the ultimate solution to the problems facing mankind, read Mystery of the Ages, by Herbert W. Armstrong.