The Tower of London has stood as a powerful symbol of crime and punishment for nearly 900 years. Visitors to the Tower can follow in the footsteps of condemned prisoners up to Tower Hill, gaze at the royal jewels encased in the Jewel Tower and hear the Tower guards weave centuries’ worth of fascinating tales.
But the Tower of London also reminds us of some deep truths from Scripture. Did you know there are about seventy-five instances each of the words “fortress” and “strong tower” in the Bible, most of which are metaphors for God? Praise the Lord for his faithful protection in our times of crisis and need!
The dungeons, torture devices, beheadings and executions related to the Tower of London all seem like a thing of the past. The natural tendency is to think, “Whew, glad I wasn’t around when all of that was going on!” But did you know that torture of a different type takes place still today? Consider how often we place others in the prison of unforgiveness or use the torture of silent treatment or commit murder in our hearts.
In Matthew 5:21-22, Jesus says that if we are angry with our brother or speak harsh words to someone, we are just as deserving of judgment as someone who kills.
Let’s pray that:
- God will give us the strength to forgive as we have been forgiven and to love others with the same unselfish love that God has lavished on us (John 15:12).
- Power struggles between Christians would dissolve and that we would learn to love one another.
- The hold that the pervasive legacy of hatred, greed, envy, pride, selfishness, caprice, murder, and adultery has on our hearts would be broken.
- We would no longer use the weapons of silent treatment, bitterness, harsh words, gossip and resentment to torture and imprison one another.
- We would no longer commit murder in our hearts through the thoughts we think and the words we speak.
King David often compared God to a fortress, a strong tower and a refuge in times of trouble. The Tower of London may have provided shelter for kings and been a stronghold against their enemies but it had flaws and weaknesses. On the other hand, we rejoice that we have a Fortress that never fails.
Psalm 18:2, “The Lord is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my buckler, and the horn of my salvation, and my high tower.”
Nathalie Jeter is the author of a series of Christian guidebooks that include PrayerWalk Beijing, PrayerWalk Paris and the forthcoming PrayerWalk London. She blogs about travel, food, and prayer at www.prayerwalkguides.com.