Hi friends! In recent prayer times, I have asked the Lord repeatedly to give me His vision of the time in which we live. After all, through human eyes, it is difficult to see anything but doom and gloom:
- ISIS on a rampage across the Middle East, setting their sights on worldwide domination
- Random (and not-so-random) acts of murder and other violence on a regular basis in our country (some of which hardly makes the news any more)
- Iran just inches away from nuclear capability (and an American administration eager for them to have it)
- Unprecedented persecution of Christians (and others) all over the globe
- Videos of Planned Parenthood’s executives casually discussing the “correct” methods of abortion, so as not to “crush” the valuable body parts suitable for sale
- The surge in suicides and drug use
- Rampant immorality, including the “approval” of homosexuality, the popularity of sex change, websites encouraging married couples to cheat on their spouses, and a flood of other things once “unthinkable” in any decent society
So, where is our hope? Do Christian values matter anymore? Is it time to simply “go with the flow” and accept what our society has foisted upon us?
According to Scripture, the answers are clear: Jesus Christ is our hope, Christian values do matter, and we (as believers) should stand firm in our faith and not “go with the flow!” Thus, over the next few days, I want to share Hope for Today, a series of thoughts and ideas I have gleaned from recent study. So, today we look at Hope for Today: The World in Which We Live.
In Luke 17, Jesus taught His disciples about the Second Coming (which He alludes to as the “day of the Son of Man”), and He likened that day to the days of Noah and Lot. Beginning in verse 26 He says:
And just as it happened in the days of Noah, so it will be also in the days of the Son of Man: they were eating, they were drinking, they were marrying, they were being given in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and the flood came and destroyed them all. It was the same as happened in the days of Lot: they were eating, they were drinking, they were buying, they were selling, they were planting, they were building; but on the day that Lot went out from Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven and destroyed them all. It will be just the same on the day that the Son of Man is revealed.
Notice what it says about the days of Noah. They were eating, drinking, marrying and being given in marriage. Seems normal, doesn’t it? Nothing immoral or particularly sinful. This issue isn’t sin, in this case, it is simply focus and attention placed on the things of this world, rather than on the things of God. Despite Noah’s preaching, the people ignored spiritual things to focus on worldly things, and they were destroyed as a result. For many, that is the world we live in today…and destruction is coming!
My desire is not to “step on toes,” but stop to consider for a moment: have you spent as much time in prayer this week as you have watching TV or surfing the internet? Those things aren’t necessarily sinful, they are simply distractions that keep us from fellowship with God! Even well-meaning people were totally unaware in Noah’s day, and the same is true today!
But then, Jesus likened the Second Coming to the days of Lot. They, too, were eating, drinking, buying, selling, planting and building. Regular, every day things, right? So why did it rain fire and brimstone from heaven to destroy them all? Well, other passages of Scripture, such as Genesis 19:1-11, 2 Peter 2:6, and Jude 1:6-7 give us a clue. Lot lived in Sodom where sexual perversion was rampant and most lived ungodly lives. If we look at our list above, we see much of that too, don’t we?
Hence, being distracted by worldly things, and living in a society practicing blatant immorality and ungodly living will characterize the days leading up to the coming of the Son of Man! We are definitely living in those days!
Here’s our point for today: the world we live in, whether we are well-meaning, totally ungodly, or anything in between, is shaping up to be very similar to the days of Noah and the days of Lot. Jesus, our Lord, clearly told His disciples that His Second Coming would be in a day just like that! He is coming soon and we must be ready!
If you are living a Godless life, there is hope! Jesus Christ is that hope and nothing else will do! No matter where you are, what you have done, or the mess you may be in at the moment, God’s long arm of grace reaches out to you. Reach out to Him, receive His grace, and allow Him to do what nothing else and no one else in life can do. You can know God right now! Just click here to find out how to have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. He will save you!
If you already know Jesus, but are living ungodly, there is hope! Repent! That simply means to turn around. Turn away from ungodliness, and turn back to Jesus. In 1 John 1, the apostle John was writing to believers when he said (in verses 5-10):
This is the message we have heard from Him and announce to you, that God is Light, and in Him there is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with Him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth; but if we walk in the Light as He Himself is in the Light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar and His word is not in us.
There is grace for you! Confess your sins to Him, He will cleanse you and make you whole again!
If you are walking with the Lord, but simply unaware (as the people were in Noah’s day), there is hope! We simply need to wake up! We are called to be alert, to be sober, to fix our hope on the grace of God, to flee former lusts and to be holy as God is holy. (See 1 Peter 1:13-16, for example)
Praise God, there is hope for all!
Come back tomorrow for Hope for Today: Understanding the Time and the Assignment. Shabbat Shalom, friends! See you tomorrow.