Fear has been the major weapon of compelling force wielded by governments during these recent months of 2020. The human mind instinctively seeks relief from fear and especially the growing angst of the unseen and unknown. When crises come, Christians naturally seek consolation from Scripture and through prayer and faith in God. But if we place our faith in natural hopes or dwell upon that which is creating fear, we become totally unrealistic, irrational, and unfaithful to God. This can produce reactions that drive us away from God and His Word.
Articles 41–60 of 367 for All Records
Because Christ directs our attention to the days of Noah and Lot, we must draw from the insights of those times for our own season in history. In reflecting upon Genesis chapters 6 and 19, we carefully observe the parallelism of those days with our days. The growing intense violence and wickedness found in Genesis 6 are clearly like our day. The aggressive and expanding rise of sodomy (in the powers of homosexuality and lesbianism) has also evilly pervaded our society (Gen. 19).
We have yet to see how the world will look after this global lockdown; what increasing similarities will now emerge among world governments. Only God knows the truth behind all that we have experienced since the world entered this confrontation with an unseen virus. He alone knows what is real and what is part of “the Lie.” Yet, we must continue to trust that “the earth is the LORD’S and the fulness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein” (Ps. 24:1). Our Sovereign God is still in absolute control of it all.
Fear is one of the great powers that potentially can obsess and control our thought life. The concept of fear begins in the mind as one’s thought life observes and reacts to circumstances of life. Fear may even arise by musing on circumstances that may not exist at the present time; however, these circumstances may have been real in the past or potentially may become real in the future. Fear is a mental feeling or an emotion prompted by a thought. A person who fears something does not want it to happen; knowing its inevitability, he dreads the darkness and pain surrounding the contemplation of it. The fear response comes from sensing danger that may surround a coming circumstance. Perhaps in the natural understanding, fear is the body’s way of protecting itself from confronting situations that may be dangerous.
We have come to a most crucial hour in the history of the world that has overwhelmingly pressed upon humanity an unprecedented global panic. This consciousness now borders on mass hysteria fed by both the news media and the politicization of the liberal faction of government and “deep-state” powers. Transcending just a single nation, this consciousness is affecting all of humanity. We have been catapulted into a global aggressive takeover. What does this mean for the Christian? How should we then live as we face the world’s mandate regarding the coronavirus known as COVID-19?
Since the Fall, man has been in the night season of history; we Christians with anticipation are awaiting the coming day. There is a scriptural sense in which we as Christians are of the day (Rom. 13:11–14). This “day” is also found in the scriptural context of the second coming of Christ for His saints (2 Pet. 1:20) as well as in the context of Christ setting up His kingdom. Thus, though we are children of the day, we anticipate the dawning of the Day of Christ in history.
In global crises, the world places its faith in its governments without the consciousness of God. Even in our present viral crisis, irrespective of the means or methods of this pandemic, God sovereignly is in full control of all events. When mankind is not conscious of God in these events, then there will be no true hope. In contrast, the biblical Christian is a person with hope, no matter how difficult life becomes either in his personal life or its relationship to global life on earth.
In order to discern his age, the Christian must possess five realities of life. First, he must be born again. The reason many professing people do not see what is happening in our day is simply that they are not born again. Jesus stated in John 3 that except a man be born again he can neither enter nor see the kingdom of God (vv. 5, 3). The new birth provides (for the first time) spiritual sight for one to see his age.
God has divinely appointed our lives to be lived in the most crucial hour of human history: the time of the coming of two men. First there is the coming of the God-Man, the Lord Jesus Christ for a Rapture of His people, and then there is the coming of the Antichrist. Two different groups of people in the earth are awaiting the arrival of these two men. There is a remnant that is looking for the coming of Christ in the darkest hour of history, the darkest spiritual hour of the Institutional Church. There is also the world that is looking for the coming of Antichrist to bring all of the world governments under one federation and to rid the world of the clutter of religion. The generation before and at the coming of Jesus Christ for His saints will see the battle against the world and the Christian apostasy at its hottest, the deception at its greatest, and the compromises of the Church at their most prolific in history. Likewise the generation before the coming of Antichrist will be most crucial in its preparation of the world for him.
When Christ came to earth He came through the Jewish line. The Bible emphatically declares Him to be the seed of Abraham and from David’s loins. His divine appointment by the Heavenly Father was that He would come to earth as a Jew and spend His life among the Jews of Palestine. He declared that salvation was of the Jew.
John the Baptist was prophesied by Malachi to be a forerunner of the first coming of the Son, the Lord Jesus Christ. His appointment of life was brief, dying before reaching the age of thirty-one. Nevertheless, within the six months of his public ministry, he fulfilled all that God appointed for him as this forerunner. Likewise, the Bible reveals that a forerunner will precede the public second coming of Christ. In addition to Malachi’s mentioning of Elijah, Revelation 11 speaks of another prophet, possibly Moses or Enoch (like Elijah, the only other man that has not seen death yet).
Whereas the Scripture declares every human has a soul, it is proper to also say that every nation has a “soul.” How does one describe the soul of a nation? Where does it reside? How does it come into existence? What is its purpose? If the soul of a nation once knew a natural righteousness, can it know a moral and spiritual death? It may be that the United States of America has had a unique soul that influenced the souls of other nations.
Entering this series of articles concerning another prophetic perspective of the End Time, we must carefully acknowledge that the Bible is the only source of infallible Truth for man on this planet. Within this infallible revelation, God has revealed the path we are to tread; He also grants the light to find the path that we are to take. The Bible speaks of the precarious environment in which the Christian finds himself in this present evil world. From this precious book, we gain insight for living, either through principles revealed specifically for our times or patterns that bespeak the spiritual and moral climate of the days. This climate and age in which we live now is the burden of these articles.
The great problem today in contemporary Christianity is the absence of a clear, defined change of life identified with becoming a Christian. There is no difference between the citizens of this strange land and contemporary Christianity; there is no difference between the institutional church and the world. The institutional church has redefined itself to accommodate the contemporary it loves. The professing Christian church on earth has not pressed for this radical change of life; consequently, it has radically changed the definition of a Christian.
One prominent power Christians are facing today in the strange land of this world is the pervasion of sin and anti-God sentiment in the culture of society. Today’s culture has gone beyond the normalcy of sin. A strangeness has taken over the culture of daily human behavior. Society’s continued bold defiance of even basic moral principles makes it increasingly difficult for Christians in society.
We continue in the burden from the last Straightway articles dealing with the powers of darkness in the End Time. This issue carefully examines the drawing influences of the Devil upon Christians. May the Lord grant us understanding of how the Devil stealthily influences God’s people in drawing them away from the Lord and His Word.
How often in warfare a battle is lost because military strategists did not know their enemy. This becomes a sad, but obvious reality about many Christians who are not aware of Satan’s devices that bring defeat to their lives. Yes, it is imperative that we know our enemy. Certainly, the number one reason for failure in the Christian life is the lack of abiding in the Lord. However, another prominent reason is that the Christian is not aware of his spiritual foe, the Devil.
As we continue to witness the aggressive momentum of evil and the overt powers of darkness increasing against Christianity around the world, we must consider in the light of biblical prophecy what God’s saints will face in the time of the End. It is already evident that these powers have swept across the nations of the earth, and we are now seeing this fomenting hatred against Christianity rising in our own nation. In this last article we will consider the powers of darkness and the final intent of the Devil against God’s saints.
How often we have reminded our reading audience that we are living in the End Time of the last days. Acts 2:16, 17 and Hebrews 1:2 assure us that the last days began with the coming of Christ to earth. Therefore, we have been in the last days for the past two thousand years. In Matthew 24, Jesus Christ also spoke of an “end time.” When reading this chapter, we must acknowledge that our Saviour’s words divided the End Time into two segments. While the early verses (24:4–8) reveal the beginning of the End Time, the latter verses (24:9–14) speak of the end of the End Time. The Last Days began with the first coming of Christ; the End Time of these Last Days is identified with the second coming of Christ.
We now must give attention to the great power of the Devil set against God’s children seeking to continue their lives with the Lord. The Devil casts thoughts in the mind of the believer to hinder any deepening of his desire for the things of God. To understand this wicked craft, we must go back in biblical history and reflect upon the beginning of these powers of darkness.