Tuesday, 10 May 2022

The Beginning of Sorrows

 Scripture:  Matthew 24 v 7 - 14: "For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places.

8  All these are the beginning of sorrows.
9  Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name's sake.
10  And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another.
11  And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many.
12  And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.
13  But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.
14  And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come."

This morning I asked the Lord Jesus what He wanted to say through today's blog.  He is very concerned that so many people are being deceived spiritually, emotionally, financially and mentally.  He wants us to focus on today and leave yesterday and tomorrow in His keeping.

Jesus sees that many of us are troubled by the war against Ukraine.  The human rights violations, war crimes, wanton destruction of infrastructure, deaths of citizens and children, are in full view on most news outlets and social media.  It is truly tragic.  It is part of the Beginning of Sorrows.

So is Covid-19 and other pandemics like AIDS, Cancer, Heart disease, Dementia.  They are here and now of great concern but unless we are directly affected by them, we push them to one side to try to cope with the other needs in our lives.  We try to make contingency plans for future unknown drama and are never sure we have done enough.

Jesus has done more than enough to secure us.  We are in Him, and He is the Rock of Ages cleft for me so let me hide myself in Thee.  As the powerful hymn that blessed many during the Second World War comforted them.  If we heed all the words of the Bible, using them as a personal guide for each day, we will not step on the proverbial landmine.

Jesus is all we need.  When He was arrested we were IN HIM.  When He was scoured with His flesh ripped from His back, we were in Him.  When He was nailed to the Cross, dying, we were in Him hearing Him say Father forgive them they know not what they do.

When He died and was buried, we were in Him.  When He went to Paradise to collect Abraham and all who were waiting with him, we were in Him.  When he rose from death we were in Him and are in Him now, seated in Heavenly places on God's right hand.

Romans 8 v 37 - 39: "Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.
38  For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come,
39  Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord."

The false prophets Jesus said would deceive us are doing just that.  People like Charles Darwin, Michael Nostradamus, Carl Jung, Siegmund Freud are deceiving people to this day.  The Church is full of false prophets.  One prominent South African prophet in the church predicted over his wife's five pregnancies that each was a son.  He has five daughters.  Yet people hang on his words as gospel truth.

How do we discern truth from error?  When that which is prophesied comes true.  Deuteronomy 13 v 4 - 5: "Ye shall walk after the LORD your God, and fear him, and keep his commandments, and obey his voice, and ye shall serve him, and cleave unto him.
5  And that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams, shall be put to death; because he hath spoken to turn you away from the LORD your God, which brought you out of the land of Egypt, and redeemed you out of the house of bondage, to thrust thee out of the way which the LORD thy God commanded thee to walk in. So shalt thou put the evil away from the midst of thee."

This was the only option in the Old Testament for a false prophet.  Anyone who led people astray as in psychics, fortune tellers, astrologers, or prognosticators was put to death usually by stoning.  Today its a choice you make to follow a psychic or to follow the Lord.  

False prophets in various different denominations destroyed thousands of lives by predicting that the end of the world would definitely occur on a certain date.  People sold their homes and businesses until the date came and went leaving them in dire straits.

Jim Jones led nearly a thousand people to their deaths giving them orange juice laced with cyanide as this would be the Rapture.  The authorities were closing in on his evil ways and he died taking out nearly all the witnesses.  One who escaped was his daughter who told the whole ugly story.

Jesus does want any of us to be deceived like this, die like this, be lost forever like this.  He wants us to follow the way, the truth and the Life, Him, as He is the only way to the Father.  There is no other way than by being born again, baptised in water, and fill with the Holy Ghost.  

Any church denomination that does not give the whole gospel is not of Him.  I never heard the words "born again" until my brother in law in a Pentecostal church shared the gospel with me and led me to Jesus.  I was 25 years old.  A good Anglican, and also confirmed in the Presbyterian Church.  I was never saved until I followed Jesus into the truth.  

He says there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth on the day of judgment when so called ministers of God, and their followers, are refused eternal life in Heaven.  They had the whole Bible in their hands but never changed the traditions of the Church they belonged to.  Matthew 15 v 6 - 9: "And honour not his father or his mother, he shall be free. Thus have ye made the commandment of God of none effect by your tradition.
7  Ye hypocrites, well did Esaias prophesy of you, saying,
8  This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me.
9  But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men."

Jesus spoke these words, and many others condemning traditions, but so many cling to these deceptions as they fear change.  Rather fear God and do it His way, the only safe way in these perilous days.  Jesus loves us, we are part of His own body.  He does not want to lose any one.  In Hosea He says, My people perish for lack of knowledge.  These blogs are always written with that thought in my mind.  This is number 1912 today.

Prayer:  Heavenly Father, we worship Your name and Your presence among us, and our heart's desire is to make You known in Your fullness to those sitting in lifeless churches not knowing what awaits them.  Please set us on fire with the gospel to share truth with them in the short time we have left before the Beginning of Sorrows becomes the Great Tribulation.  In Jesus' name.  Amen.