‘There seems to be a deep sleep overcoming many who profess to be Bible-believing Christians,’ writes author Roger Oakland on his website http://www.understandingthetimes.org. ‘It seems fewer people go to a Church to learn about what the Scriptures teach.
He continues, ‘Some are even saying the Bible is not sufficient for our generation. They are looking for some extra-biblical experience or new revelation that will stimulate them or make them feel good. Others have abandoned the faith and have become completely apathetic.’
One of my aims in using this newsletter / blog is to keep Christians ‘on the ball’ during these end times. It has been an interesting 9 months’ work. I started by emailing a lot of Christian friends and acquaintances. A small minority replied they did not want to receive it, and I was pretty sure a number of others just didn’t want to know about it. With some their reasons were quite obvious, with others I was a bit confused.
Anyway, that is their concern not mine, and I am sure I am doing what God has called me to do in these perilous times. The blog is now being read in 11 countries and I am glad to do my bit.
Are You Suffering End Times Fatigue?
End times fatigue is a similar malady to information overload. Our brains become so full of world events, wars and rumours of wars, criminal activity, natural and man-made disasters and all sorts of economic and social dysfunction, that Christians can find themselves completely swamped with it all.
At this point, even Christians often can react or cope with the issues in several ways:
1. We can close our eyes and pretend that nothing is happening. This can lead to a foolish blindness that in effect is no different from that of our worldly neighbours – ‘eat, drink and party.’
2. We can continue to ‘tut-tut’ every time we read or watch the news and eventually become depressed or despondent about where God is in all these situations, or,
3. As Paul the Apostle wrote, we can ‘redeem the time for the days are evil.’ [Eph. 5:16]. To redeem the time is better translated as ‘making the most of every opportunity.’ [NIV]
This is obviously the best way for a Christian to react in these last days. We are to tell and show the good news about Jesus Christ’s salvation, to live godly lives for Him and provide a good example to our neighbour.
When we do get despondent, Paul also tells us to ‘look up for your redemption draws near’. His coming is soon!
Bible Prophecy Is All But Ignored
There is no sense in provoking an argument between Christians about the timing of the rapture, for example, but the actual doctrine of the rapture is clearly established in the New Testament.
However some ministers tend to avoid even the mention of the rapture because either they are afraid of a backlash, or they are not sure about it themselves.
I would like to encourage all ministers to study again and preach on the teachings of the return of Christ.
There are a number of ‘non-negotiable’ Biblical statements about Jesus’ return:
1. Jesus taught it. He promised He would return physically to earth.
2. Many of the Old Testament prophets also referred to the event.
3. Paul says we are to ‘comfort one another with these words.’ We should be comforting our brethren with the teaching of His return to provide our final redemption.
4. Paul revealed the mystery of the rapture very clearly in 1 Thess 4:16-18 and in other letters. None of us need to claim ignorance.
The Lack Of Youthful Interest
An internet correspondent has recently lamented the lack of interest in prophecy from those Christians aged under 50.
I think there are several reasons for this state of affairs:
1. They have not been adequately educated in the Scriptures by Bible teachers or preachers.
2. They have become jaundiced or made to feel helpless in influencing the world for Christ. One young man says ‘this generation is in a coma.’
3. Many Christian young [as well as older] people will brush off talk of prophecy with the retort: ‘the Bible can be made to say anything if you cherry-pick the references”.
This last statement is really a statement of laziness – I know because it was my attitude at one [thankfully short] stage in my past.
But if they would take the statements referred to above, research them thoroughly and in context, they will find a clear body of doctrine pointing to the imminent return of Jesus, and His rapture of the saints.
In other words, it all comes back to the Bible and the example of the Bereans. [Acts 17:11].
Ignorant or Apathetic, or both?
‘This is why it is said: “Wake up, O sleeper, rise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you.” Be very careful then how you live – not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil.’
– Ephesians 5:14-16.