The fall of Carthage in North Africa (146 BC) ended one of the classic struggles of history. In 147 BC Scipio Africanus Minor, Rome’s great general, was given command of the campaign. For 3 long years Carthage had held out against Rome, and both sides lost thousands of troops. Finally the city fell, and Scipio ordered it burned.

On a hill high above flaming Carthage, Scipio watched in silence. No shout of victory rose from his lips; no fists were raised in triumph. Instead, tears flowed down his cheeks. Lifelong friend and historian Polybius was at his side and recorded that Scipio said, “It is glorious, but I have a dread foreboding that sometime the same doom will be pronounced upon my own country.”

When we are overwhelmed by the evil that permeates every aspect of life, or when forces arise that threaten all we hold dear, we can remember what Scipio only sensed: It will all change. All the great powers of the world will pass away. The Lord will “break them with a rod of iron” and “dash them to pieces” (Ps. 2:9).

We can be confident that everything will eventually be made right. The Holy One will one day bring all people and nations to their knees before His throne.