Many parts of the world are overflowing with displaced persons. Uganda’s Bidi Bidi refugee camp is one of the world’s largest, with 285,000 residents, mostly from South Sudan (PRI, September 22, 2017). Uganda’s government expects that most of these refugees will become either long-term or permanent residents. Kenya’s Dadaab refugee camp is the second largest in the world, with over 230,000 people (UNHCR, November 30, 2017). It opened in 1991 and is filled with mostly Somali refugees. More than 1,000 children are born each month in Dadaab, and many residents have seen children and grandchildren born there. The Kenyan government has considered closing the camp, which places a tremendous strain on limited national resources (Times Live, December 13, 2017). On a recent visit to Ghana, German president Frank-Walter Steinmeier warned Ghanaians to remain at home rather than to risk their lives as refugees traveling to Europe (Deutsche Welle, December 12, 2017). And in Syria, 5.1 million refugees have fled the country since 2011, while six million are displaced within the country (World Vision, July 13, 2017).
Refugees flee their homes mostly due to war and economic hardship—which are the result of selfish and inept governments. When leaders care more about themselves than their citizens, the consequences are misery and heartache! Today’s refugee crises seem to be unending and promise to intensify. However, the Bible speaks of a far more encouraging future. When Jesus Christ returns to the earth as the “King of kings and Lord of lords,” conditions in the world will change (Revelation 11:15–18; 17:14; 19:16). The government of God will be established on earth and bring unprecedented peace (Isaiah 2:2–4)—and people will be resettled in their own lands (Isaiah 27:13; Jeremiah 31:7–9). The gospel that Jesus preached about a coming Kingdom of God will finally end the plight and suffering of refugees. To learn more about this exciting future reality, be sure to read or listen to The World Ahead: What Will It Be Like?