What an exciting time to be a Christian and to be alive. “Little things” keep happening that are a set up for the grand event – the return of Jesus Christ for His Church. But these “little things” are happening now at a more frequent and accelerating pace. Just in the last week:
- The six-month deal to freeze Iran’s nuclear program in return for relief from sanctions and the release of some frozen assets was due to expire on July 20, but instead the U.S. and Europe agreed to extend the negotiation timetable – enabling Iran to continue enhancing its nuclear weapons capability.
- To the horror of the rest of the world, Russian Ukrainian separatists shot down a commercial airliner, killing its 300 passengers and crew. And Russia thumbed its nose at the U.S. and European nations who demanded access to the crash site.
- Rockets were fired from both Lebanon and Gaza into Israel.
- Israel invaded Gaza with ground forces to cleanse the area of Hamas missiles, tunnels and terrorists.
- Both the U.S. and Europe have demonstrated they are either too weak or too disinterested to “broker” a peace deal between Israel and Hamas. Egypt, which intervened the last time fighting broke out, is a much different and weaker government than previously and doesn’t seem capable of getting the parties together. This appears to be setting the table for the anti-Christ to eventually come on the scene and arrange the prophesied peaceful settlement.
- Elsewhere in the world, persecution of Christians continues to grow. ISIS fighters in Iraq have made great gains in their effort to establish an Islamic Caliphate across much of Syria and Iraq. As a result, Christians in northern Iraq have been given the ultimatum to convert to Islam and be exorbitantly taxed or die. And in the Sudan and Nigeria, Christian towns are being attacked by Muslim terrorists on a daily basis and their citizens murdered.
- In the U.S, this week the President signed an order expanding the workplace rights of LGBT’s, with no religious exceptions.
- And some mainline protestant denominations are conducting “voting” in local parishes across the country to determine whether a majority would accept their denomination’s leadership’s recommendations to allow homosexual pastors.
The apostle Paul prophesied that “in the last days perilous times will come,” and that “evil men and impostors will grow worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived.” Every Christian should consider it a privilege that we have been hand-selected by God “for such a time as this.” We’re all familiar with these famous words from the Book of Esther, when the Jewish nation faced extinction at the hands of the Persians and Medes in the 5th Century B.C. How ironic is it, that it is again the Persians (Iran) who are their greatest threat! And we’d also better take heed of the warning Mordecai gave his cousin that day: “Do not think in your heart that you will escape in the king’s palace any more than all the other Jews. For if you remain completely silent at this time, relief and deliverance will arise for the Jews from another place, but you and your father’s house will perish. Yet who knows whether you have come to the kingdom for such a time as this?”
So what do we do with the time and opportunity we have been given? Do we preach the Gospel as we’ve been commanded by Jesus and lead more souls to Christ? Or do we just sit back and watch the world fall apart and its inhabitants fall prey to the works of the devil?
We’d better give ourselves to intercessory prayer. We’d better get off our duffs and start warning our unsaved friends and relatives of the predicament they’re in and give them the solution. We’d better recognize we’re in a real spiritual war and start fighting. The enemy isn’t going to let any of us get away with declaring neutrality – he’s out to destroy each and every one of us.
If you don’t know how to fight spiritual warfare: read the New Testament; take a class on it in your local church; read my book, “Soaring above the Storm” (that’s why I wrote it); do something!!! But don’t just sit there!!! Because you were hand-picked by your heavenly Father to live in this age, you are accountable to Him for what you do with the time and talent He’s given you. He’ll show you what to do and how to do it.