Saturday, November 19, 2011

The times

Jesus never told us to predict a day or hour when He would return, but He did tell us to be aware of the times in which we live and to always be ready for His coming.  We may not be able to know the exact place on God's prophetic timeline, but there are many things taking place that indicate we are in a time like no other.

The world is not doing well—iniquity and lawlessness abound; kingdoms rise against kingdoms; the financial security and stability of the world continues to stagger and shake under the weight of debt and greed; all creation groans; people's hearts fail them because of fear; Israel faces its greatest opposition and threat to its existence since it became a nation in 1948; opposition to and persecution of the body of Christ continues to intensify.

What are we to do and how are we to live in the light of all that is taking place around us? Look up! God has a plan and He is working out His plan. The coming of the Lord is drawing near. He is not a long way down the road, or just over the next hill; rather, He is close, even at the door.

Here are four things God wants us to be doing as we await the sound of the trump of God and our gathering together unto Him.

Guard your heart: In Matthew 24: 12 Jesus tells us that in the last days sin will cause the hearts of many to grow cold. Place around your heart the shield of faith and fight the good fight of faith against every doubt that comes against the Word of God and the character of God. Keep within your heart your passion and zeal for the ways of God and the presence of God. Let His fire burn within you as a holy flame, causing the glow and glory of His face to shine upon you.

Come together with other believers: In Hebrews 10:25 we are told to gather together with other believers, especially as we see the day of Lord approaching. This is not the time to isolate and separate yourself from other believers. You need their love, support, encouragement, and prayers; and they need yours.

Make Christ known: In Matthew 24: 14 Jesus tells us that before the end comes, the Gospel of the Kingdom will be preached throughout the world. We are not to lose focus. We are here on assignment from God. He has called us to proclaim the Gospel and to make Christ known in our generation. The Gospel message is God's message to a lost world, and it is only through the Gospel that the lost can be found, the blind can see, and the dead can be made to live. There is still time to be saved.

Be full of hope: In Titus 2:13 we are reminded that as believers we are to live in hope. This hope isn't based on what the world will do, on what the financial markets will do, or on what political leaders will do. Our hope is based on what God will do. Our hope is so great and so sure that the Scriptures call our hope the "blessed hope." What is this blessed hope? It is the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ! Think of it, as a believer, you will see Jesus; not as your judge to condemn you, but as your Savior to receive you and bring you into His everlasting kingdom…so you shall forever be with the Lord!


RL

1 comment:

scotti said...

Thank you for this admonition, Stan! Such good advice and wisdom!
Blessings to you always,
Scotti