There is no doubt in my mind that this world is in the “end times.” In fact, I see us hurdling toward the end. When Jesus left this earth over 2,000 years ago to ascend to his Father, he told us he would return. In Matthew, chapter 24, Jesus told us plainly. He said in the last days there would be wars and rumors of wars, that nations would rise against nations and kingdoms against kingdoms. He told us there would be famines and pestilences, and earthquakes in strange places. In verse 10 he said that many would be offended, and betray one another, and hate one another. He said there would be great tribulation, like we’ve never seen before and will never see again. As you watch the news do you see any of these things happening? Jesus went on to say that this is just the beginning of sorrows.
He also said that “except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect’s sake those days shall be shortened.” I believe we are closer than we think!
I often pray and ask God for the strength to endure what is coming. I need his Grace. Before we continue, let be sure that we fully understand the meaning of God’s grace. It is not an external thing that the Father showers us with so we can continue to sin. To that Paul said, “God forbid!” Grace is the free gift of God. It is His internal power in us to do what we ourselves cannot do. I don’t know about you, but I need all the strength, power, and grace that God will give me. I know that I am powerless on my own to withstand what is coming on this earth. And though I know it is impossible by myself, I also know that with God, all things are possible. Will I be able to stand? Only by His grace.
I sometimes find myself wondering about why God had me born at this time. I think I would have loved the mid to late 1940’s. For one, I love Big Band music! But Jeremiah 1:5 says, “before I was formed in the womb, God knew me.” Simply put, God knew all about when he wanted me to be born, the year, the day, and even the hour.
In the book of Esther, chapter 4, we see Queen Esther faced with a huge dilemma. Her people, the Jews, are faced with being exterminated. Esther’s uncle, Mordecai, urged her to go before her husband, King Ahasuerus, and ask him to take steps to save her people. Mordecai told her, “who can say but that God has brought you into the palace for just such a time as this?” In other words, “God has you here at this time for this very purpose.”
As much as it sobers me, I know that the Lord has me here at this very time for a reason. It’s up to me to yield myself to him and allow him to use me and work in me, in whatever capacity he chooses. If I truly believe and trust my Heavenly Father, it will be “Well With My Soul.”
In the first Lord of the Rings movie, “The Fellowship of the Ring”, the ringbearer, Frodo Baggins is in possession of a very powerful, evil ring which he is called to destroy. Frodo talks with Gandalf the Gray. He says, “I wish the Ring had never come to me. I wish none of this had happened.” I love Gandalf’s response. He says, “So do all who live to see such times, but that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us.”
Jesus told us in Luke 21:28, “when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh.”
Back in Matthew 24, verse 13 says, “he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.” In verses 42 and 44 Jesus warns us to “watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come,” and to “be ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.”
I take hope brethren, that even though harder times are coming, God will see us through. He promises to save the righteous if we are in Him. And, I am confident of this very thing, that he who began the good work in me will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ.”