Hello study friends! Over the past two days, I have reviewed portions of Lesson 1 of our new study, Understanding the Times. (Review those posts here and here before moving on!) We’re on a roll, so let’s get to it!
The men of Issachar “understood the times” and “knew what Israel should do.” (1 Chronicles 12:32) In Jesus’ day, He rebuked followers (Luke 12:54-56) and religious leaders (Matthew 16:1-3) for failing to discern the times in which they lived. He then wept over Jerusalem because they missed the day of visitation (Luke 19:41-44). 1 John 2:18 tells us we’re living in the last hour. Are we making the same mistake those followers made in Jesus’ day?
It is important to understand that everything in Jesus’ day was inextricably connected to the Old Testament prophecies. He was fulfilling them day-after-day. Yet, even those who studied the prophets missed the fulfillment! For example: the disciple on the road to Emmaus. (Luke 24:13-27)
Those disciples left Jerusalem after the crucifixion of Jesus and were not aware of His resurrection. When Jesus appeared to them, they did not recognize Him, so He asked why they were so sad. They began to recite the events of Passover and the crucifixion of the One who had been their leader for 3 years. Jesus then said, “O foolish men and slow of heart to believe in all that the prophets have spoken.”
Are we slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken? They tell us Jesus is returning soon! We must understand and get in the game! Despite living in a messy world, we must hold to real faith in the One who overcame the grave! We live in a world of lies and deception. Have we been fooled into walking away from all the Lord has for us in these last days?
Time is short…but why does it matter? It matters because there are consequences for failing to recognize all the prophets told us will happen before Jesus returns! The battle rages, but we must keep our eyes fixed on the author and perfecter of our faith, and we must not lose heart!
Be strong, Christian friends!
Tomorrow we’ll finish off this week’s study with encouraging words. Slide back up to the table tomorrow for life-giving encouragement!
PS: If you are in the Phoenix area, why not join us live for class this Sunday morning at 8:00 am. You’ll find us in Room 209 at CalvaryPHX. Find info and directions here.