God reminded me of Abu, the precious little monkey from Aladdin. Aladdin and his best friend Abu were on a mission for one purpose...to retrieve the lamp. They were to take the lamp and nothing more but Abu marveled at the gold and riches that surrounded him. Once the right jewel caught his eye, his focus changed. He began pursuing what he wanted, "needed", and selfishly desired. As Abu reached for the jewel, Aladdin yelled with all his might, "ABU NOOO!" The rug rushed to restrain him from the destruction but it was too late. Abu turned his back on what he knew and who he loved and sought his own fulfillment. As soon as his hands touched what he was so sure would make him happy and complete, his world felt apart. What looked like precious gold and rubies quickly turned to consuming lava. Everything around him came crashing down. The beauty they walked through to get there became a dark cave with no way out.
"The fruit for which your soul longed has gone from you, and all your delicacies and your splendors are lost to you, never to be found again!" -Rev. 18:14
After spending a week here in Las Vegas, this has become its' story and the team from Forerunner Christian spent their time being Aladdin and the rug. With their words, actions, and obedience, they cried out for the people of Las Vegas to turn away from the darkness and find life in Jesus Christ. This city feeds the world lies and tempts all who gaze upon it with its beauty. It lures people in with promises of riches, fulfillment, and satisfaction but only to expose the burning flames of destruction that lies underneath its' captivating lights.
Las Vegas is indeed sin city. The industry here consists of casinos, bars, night clubs, strip clubs, and prostitution. The city thrives on debauchery and is leaving so many broken lives in its path of destruction. Captain Jameson from the salvation army told us of how so many people in the city came here seeking their "big break" and after pouring all they had into things that never gave back, they are now stuck here with no way out. It is a sad and solemn place here in the dessert. The night life goes on and the lights continue to shine. We watched planes go in circles around the city flying people in just as fast and they were flying them out. From the lookout point, we saw the city for what it really is...a prostitute- promising so much but taking more than it will ever give.
"Come, I will show you the judgement of the great prostitute who is seated on many waters, with whom the kings of the earth have committed sexual immortality, and with the wine of whose sexual immorality the dwellers on earth have become drunk...I saw a woman sitting on a scarlet beast that was full of blasphemous names and it had seven heads and ten horns. The woman was arrayed in purple scarlet, and adorned with gold and jewels and pearls, holding in her hand a golden cup full of abominations and the impurities of her sexual immorality. And on her forehead was written a name of mystery: "Babylon the great, mother of prostitutes and of earth's abominations. And I saw a woman drunk with the blood of the saints, the blood of the martyrs of Jesus. When I saw her, marveled greatly. But the angel said to me, 'Why do you marvel?" -Rev. 17:1-7