Continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose. Philippians 2:12-13
Jeremiah was placed in Israelís history during a time that Israel was rebelling against God through their practice of serving false Gods. God sent Jeremiah to Israel to tell them to reform their ways and proclaim that Nebuchadnezzarís troops would soon be trampling the streets of Jerusalem. The kingís counselors were not only scoffing at Jeremiah but proclaiming that no harm would befall the nation of Israel under Godís protection. Yet God claimed that he had not sent these dreamers.
History is repeating itself as church leaders of today are proclaiming peace and safety by way of the rapture. Today the people we trust are saying the church is going to be raptured out of the world before the time Satan begins his reign of terror. Today we are told God did not appoint us to suffer wrath. The same reasoning is happening today as the time of punishment has not reached its climax (Ezekiel 21:25).
Sorry to say the news of the world is filled with the violence that men afflict on one another? We see immoral man working feverishly through the American Court system to allow immoral man to become even more depraved. Today it seems as if our world is producing selfish citizens who could care less as long as life is exciting and the error of their way wonít affect them. The Bible reveals that not much has changed, what is going on in the world today took place in Hoseaís day.
There is only cursing, lying and murder, stealing and adultery; they break all bounds, and bloodshed follows bloodshed. Hosea 4:2
The Bible used the kings of Judah and Israel to show the character of the king played an important role in the relationship its people had with God. When the king was corrupt the nation fell in disgrace. When the laws of God were enforced by righteous men the nation prospered. In the same way the people of today follow the leaders that lead our nation. Leadership comes in all forms so letís not overlook our spiritual leaders who face the same conditions and stress as all men have.
Time constraints and the desire of the pastor to produce sheep for God can be a major concern that all preachers have. A series of sermons on the same subject is by far better for the preacher and for those sitting in the pews (my opinion). However to produce sermons on a wide variety of topics can cause haste with errors. The wider range of topics one preaches on places a higher dependence on commentaries of which sound correct but because of time constraints may not be reproved or checked against the word of God. Nonetheless every Christian bears the responsibility to;
Test everything. Hold on to the good 1 Thessalonians 5:21.
The tribulation Period and rapture are fluent terms in the church but I challenge you to learn how many times the term rapture and tribulation period are found in the bible. According to Deuteronomy 8:3, we live by every word that comes from the mouth of God. However in my mind, these terms disregard important parts of Godís word and distort what God has planned.
For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ. 1 Thessalonians 5:9
He will speak against the Most High and oppress his saints and try to change the set times and the laws. The saints will be handed over to him for a time, times and half a time. Daniel 7:25
How do we as Christians understand the end times when our leaders say we will be safe and in heaven during the time the bible says the saints will be handed over to the beast and be defeated. Do we as Christians place more trust in the word of those who proclaim peace and safety when the bible says,
The man clothed in linen, who was above the waters of the river, lifted his right hand and his left hand toward heaven, and I heard him swear by him who lives forever, saying, "It will be for a time, times and half a time. When the power of the holy people has been finally broken, all these things will be completed." Daniel 12:7
I think it is time that we realize that we are Godís servants and need to listen to his word. As those who proclaim Godís plan reveal it by plagiarizing the opinions of other godly men. As Godís servants we are to submit our lives to the plans God has made and that should give us a good reason to study his plan. Letís remember that no one wants to go through the tribulation Period because of what we understand about it. Nonetheless we need to remember that no sin will go unpunished.
God was gracious enough to provide mankind with a number of exhaustive concordances so we could search the inspired word to know with certainty what God has planned. But do prudent Christians test all things (1 Thessalonians 5:21) or do we place our trust in someone else to work out our salvation with God?
Why is it that we are told the church will be taken out before Satan begins to reign? Doesnít this conflict with Revelation 12:17-13:7 that reveals that Satan is not only was thrown to the earth but then proceeds to make war with the saints with the authority to conquer them? Daniel 7:21-22 reveals the same story of the saintís defeat and Daniel 12: 7 adds credibility to the word of God.
According to some of our spiritual leaders Satan makes a treaty with Israel during the last week and defines it as the seven year tribulation period. Will Satan make a treaty with anyone? Does he have the characteristics of a peacemaker?
The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full. John 10:10
Satan is a deceiver that lacks political power in the world. In addition Satanís character makes any kind of treaty impossible because he steals anything he can get his hands on, kills what he canít control and destroys everything in his path. Jesus said Satan was a murderer from the beginning (John 8:44) and adds this statement about him.
If those days had not been cut short, no one would survive, but for the sake of the elect those days will be shortened. Matthew 24:22
The phrase ďWhen you seeĒ is by far a better way to explain the end time as it contains something every person is able to perceive. The parable of the fig tree, and when you see Jerusalem being surrounded Luke 21:20 are signs of the end of the age. Letís not forget that at least part of the Temple at Jerusalem must be rebuilt for the lawless one to be exposed.
For this is the time of punishment in fulfillment of all that has been written. Luke 21:22
Christians are not exempt from being punished for their unconfessed sins. At Godís command every prophet faced tribulation along with every godly person during their lifetime. When Satan is thrown to the earth, look out for it will be a time of greater distress ever seen before.
As I watched, this horn was waging war against the saints and defeating them, until the Ancient of Days came and pronounced judgment in favor of the saints of the Most High, and the time came when they possessed the kingdom. Daniel 7:21-22
Man has been involved in wars before but not like this one we are about to face. How we perceive the weapons used against another man are based what we can see and feel. Has anyone seen spiritual weapons? Can they be detected? In this war Satan will use a statue that honors him with an added twist. This statue will appear to be alive and look like him but will kill anyone who does not worship his image. His reign is based on fear and intimidation.
We must be determined to serve the Lord even if we must physically die. You see, if we worship the beast we die, if we accept his mark we die, but if we die in the Lord we live with Christ forever. Working out our salvation means that we accept Godís plan and be ready for his coming. Regardless of what we believe, God is going to harvest the world according to his plan.
September 30, 2013
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