Christian devotions in the Daily-Message

Christian devotions in the Daily-Message

Perilous times

This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.”

2 Timothy 3:1
 

The topic of this Bible text can make us afraid! Am I ready for such times? People are killing each other in God's name. There is talk about retaining and defending freedom at any cost. But, what type of freedom is meant? Political freedom? Social freedom? Freedom of reason? Moral freedom? Secular justice? Religious freedom? Freedom from God? It results mostly in terror, fear and pain. Today, more than ever. Everyone thinks he is right. But, it must become personal, because I cannot hide behind humanistic ideologies or radicalism. How will God judge me? It is not only proverbial end times, evil is banging on the door more than ever before! Not a day goes by without some fearful reports! What exactly is the end time? This last phase prior to the second coming of Jesus started already when Jesus came the first time (Galatians 4:4). Did the belief in His second coming not keep Christians spiritually alive throughout the past centuries? This is what we need now? For God a thousand years are like a day. Must the presently alive Christians go through this apocalyptic time of sorrow and fear? A lot of questions, a lot of interpretations. But, is it so crucial and decisive? No-one apart from God can really end it. That is a breathtaking and simultaneously comforting thought. One day there won't be any more suffering, pain, fear, panic nor sin. The evil will be destroyed and those that do evil judged. We will not have any more painful thoughts or memories. The world with its lunacy and injustice will come to an end. What remains? What must remain? The Word of God, the love of God and our living faith will remain (Matthew 16:27). End time – it's not just enough to say: “I was there”. To be present doesn't necessarily mean to partake. God tests our hearts. That makes me happy. God can't just end, but daily works something anew. We always need to know that.

Sometimes the fear and unease forces us to our knees. Thus, also the bad serves to our best (Romans 8:28). God is, in life and death, our sovereign Lord. The evil and injustice sometimes seems unstoppable, inevitable and unbearable. When we are somehow able to cope with it all, then only through our steadfast and earnest faith in God (Hebrews 11:6). Fear should not paralyse us, but inwardly mobilise us. And more so as the world gets worse. Faith without works is dead (James 2:17). We must (may) continue to work through our failures so as to become more aware of how complete and vital salvation is. Faith is necessary for salvation. In my bookshelf I have a book with the title: “Does faith make us mentally ill?” Will this be our obituary? Do we take this from the end time: fought, lost, mentally and physically finished!? Mutated to couch-christians due to fear and failure? Is that what is meant with our love having waxed cold (Matthew 24:12)? I think this is written in the Bible, not for us to become like this, but that we do the exact opposite. Let us occupy ourselves with that which is essential. We need the good deeds and the love to other people, especially our fellow believers (Romans 12:10; 1 Peter 3:8). Love has a lot to do with the “you” and little with the “I”. There is still a lot to do, many people who can still obtain salvation, we can still grow in our faith – especially when we go through bad times. End times don't mean the end of love and mercy and the act of loving – quite the opposite. The closer we get to the end the more we need to strengthen each other (in word and deed) and spread the joyful Gospel. Jesus is coming in power and glory!

(Translated by Linda Gates)

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