Sulam Ya'aqov Messianic Fellowship (The Fellowship Of Jacob's Ladder) LARGE TITLE
Thursday, 13 December 2018

Being Prepared – The Eve of Persecution

Key verse: Romans 5: 3-5:
…but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope.  Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.

Introduction.

This teaching is not about the sequence of Things to Come within prophecy, it is rather an observation of what has been, and is, and so what will come is written of and each believer has his view and opinion on how things will play out in the years ahead – being the end time scenario of the Book of Revelation – The Revealing of Future Events within God’s Plan.
This is an article examining what is going on around us with scriptural teaching at the end for disciples to follow in Being Prepared as God’s Word teaches. The future for some is seen with a historic viewpoint of fulfilment and others in a future eschatological unfolding, so let each man be convinced in his own heart re the ‘Things to Come’.

To those who are watching ‘the signs of the times’ we are clearly entering into a new period of on-going world persecution. It is a fact that Christians are the most persecuted group of people on the earth today. It has been estimated that around 100,000 believers have been martyred for their faith in the last decade. Millions have been martyred before as history attests and the Church of Rome and others have a heavy price to pay in this. The martyred saints are crying out in Heaven how long Lord before you avenge our deaths (Revelation 6:9-10). The reply is not until those appointed unto death join you (v11). So we can see that there are a good number of saints still to be martyred for believing in Yeshua/Jesus as the only Saviour and the only way to heaven for both Jew and Gentile within the nations. Today’s liberals will cry foul in their ecumenical multi faith system, but time will tell who is right and many of us are glad to be on the Lord’s side as we stand with Sola Scriptura.

What has replaced our Judeo Christian inheritance can be seen as materialism, humanism or cultural Marxism or plain old paganism. Yet all this has its roots in the heart of man and his moral and physical rebellion against the Lord.

God has been taken out of the home, our schools and universities, the government and indeed some churches with leaders picking and choosing what to believe! So we are seeing the attack on Christians and biblical laws and values evident in all aspects of our culture; in our laws, in education, in marriage, in gender roles and definitions, and in the perversion of rational thinking. Speak the truth of Holy Scripture today and you are generally condemned and many have to take a course in political correctness as we abandon the old ways that made this country a great nation blessed under God.

World leaders have become one in a worldly unity as powerful men in politics and industry control one another in various ways but the Lord is watching and waiting. He will act in due course as history is His story as Creator, Lord and Judge of all. One God, one faith, one baptism, one people who are His, called and chosen.

1 Corinthians 2:6 – However, we speak wisdom among those who are mature, yet not the wisdom of this age, nor of the rulers of this age, who are coming to nothing.

Proposition.

We are then on the eve of persecution like no other time since the early centuries of the Christian faith in the time of the Roman Emperor’s and then the Dark Ages within Europe. Thousands were killed, thousands more put into slavery being sold to the highest bidder. Three on going centuries of persecution followed by the dark centuries of false religion.

Today we have a shift within governments in the western world ignoring their Judeo Christian heritage and ignoring or denying what the Bible warns of, as a falling away of the faith once and for all delivered. Humanistic reasoning now dictates that God can be found in many ways as political correctness pushes the ideology of diversity and equality to bring about peace. However, once again the Holy Bible warns us prophetically about a false peace in the end times that will bring about world disaster.

To add to this we have Islam wanting to govern the world in the name of Allah and imposing sharia law stage by stage. The powers that be seem to think they can control through appeasement of diversity plans, multi-faith and liberalism but they are dealing with an ideology they do not fully understand. Recent events are showing the fruit of this as migration spirals out of control. Denials are the norm with all manner of opinions and then sadly accusations of racism, bigotry et al. Instead of understanding the times and seasons world leaders are geared to a humanistic programme that is backfiring on them month by month. The cost of all this is incredible and will drain the economies of the western world. Many are wondering why the Arab nations so rich in oil revenues are not fully contributing let alone the rest of the Muslim governments around the world towards their own people of faith which is totally different to the Judeo Christian faith. We are truly living in a crisis age.

There are numerous prophecies in the Holy Bible that teach about the end times scenario before a climactic battle against Israel that will bring about the return of the Lord Yeshua (Jesus) to rule with a rod of iron and bring real peace, equality and a period of blessing amongst the nations called the Millennial Rule of Messiah and Israel’s Golden Age.

Before this though there will be a time of persecution like never before and never to be repeated for Israel (Jeremiah 30:7) and the Nations (Revelation 16:1-21).

The signs are that we are now entering into the eve of persecution and the darkness grows under a false pretence of a golden age which will become an age of chaos because the Holy Bible tells us this and 4/5ths of all the Prophecies have been fulfilled to date, so the other 20% will be in the days, months and years ahead!

Teaching.

The beginning of 2015 heralded in a new wave, a flood of terrorism and political upheaval, followed by the migration, a flood of people from the Middle East and Africa that is costing billions to try and solve. A flood of corruption within FIFA was followed by a physical flood of water! Climate change is only partly to blame, through man’s sinful ways we are reaping what we have sown and the Lord God Almighty is shaking all things within His creation. Now all can see that countries within and without the EU are heavily debt ridden due to past poor management of their respective economies. As one thing follows another what will the rest of 2016 bring forth? The answer is literally more of the same!

In the days and years ahead we will see chaos within our culture and society through increasing food prices and goods, more financial collapses, more wars and rumours of wars, terrorism, earthquakes, storms, fires, flooding and so on. Men’s hearts will truly faint with fear knowing that God is moving. The Lord’s return will bring equity and equality.

Those with the spirit of God can understand the things of God as Paul the Apostle wrote for us in 1 Corinthians 2:10-16. What we are seeing is the beginning of the judgment of God and it will increase as man ignores God’s ways and so they shall reap what they have sown.
Rebellion brings judgment just as it is written in Holy Writ. Israel learnt this by ignoring and the nations today are doing exactly the same.

We can list many of our sins before God through and by:-

  • Breaking His laws, commandments, statutes, precepts, ordinances and testimonies.
  • Having other gods before us – the Lord is a jealous God and will always take action!
  • False teaching and prophecies within the Church. The greed of some church leaders
    and TV faith prosperity teachers that have ruined or damaged the faith of many.
  • Not learning from the history of Israel and so what has been will be again. Paganism and new age teaching within schools. Adultery, fornication, abortions and divorce.
  • Lying, cheating, stealing, and bearing false witness, murder and incest. Greed and corruption within government, banking, commerce, industry and utility companies.

God’s Word has never been disproved with its wisdom for daily life. King David wrote for the Lord God Almighty – Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord. Psalm 33:12.

A war in the Middle East is looming and Israel will become involved at some stage. This may well lead to further economic problems and so a one world government will emerge as the Lord shakes the nations for touching the apple of His eye – His chosen people Israel. This system will be overseen supernaturally for a time by the dragon, the beast, and the false prophet (Revelation 13:4, 11-13). No man will be able to buy or sell except the one who has received the mark of the beast (Revelation 13:17), that is required of all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and slave (Revelation 13:16). Yet we are warned of the eternal consequences for any receiving this mark of his name (Revelation 14:11).

What are believers to do, how are we to prepare ourselves until the Lord comes for us. The following points are biblical and the answer for us if we are not to become complacent, then compromise and conform, which will ultimately lead to contamination and corruption.

These 4 points give the true path of life and testimony –

1) To Hear – Eccles 5:1 – ‘Discipleship’.
Walk prudently when you go to the house of God; and draw near to hear rather than to give the sacrifice of fools, for they do not know that they do evil.’

2) To Do – Romans 12:1 – ‘Service’.

I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service.’

3) To Preach – 2 Tim 4:2 – ‘Testimony’.

Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching.

4) To Die – Rom 8:13. 1 Cor 6:20. Phil 1:21. ‘Devotedness’.

For if you live according to the flesh you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live.’

Standing fourfold in:-

1) Watching – Stand fast in the faith as saints. 1 Corinthians 16:13.

Watch, stand fast in the faith, be brave, be strong.

2) Authority – Stand fast in the Lord as disciples. Philippians 4:1.

Therefore, my beloved and longed for brethren, my joy and crown, so stand fast in the Lord, beloved.’

3) Fraternity – Stand fast in one spirit as brethren. Philippians 1:27.

Only let your conduct be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of your affairs, that you stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel.

4) Liberty – Stand fast in the liberty as free men. Galatians 5:1.

‘Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage.’

Holding fast in 4 things:-

1) Hold fast our Profession – Heb 4:14.

Seeing then that we have a great High Priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession.’

2) Hold fast that which is Good – 1 Thess 5:21.

Test all things, hold fast what is good.

3) Hold fast Sound Words – 2 Tim 1:13.

Hold fast the pattern of sound words which you have heard from me, in faith and love which are in Christ Jesus.’

4) Hold fast our Hope to the end – Heb 3:6.

But Christ as a Son over His own house, whose house we are if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm to the end.

So be it then unto those who have teachable and obedient hearts.

Conclusion:-

The answer for us is always in the Book of books and so we look up for our redemption draweth nigh. God is in charge, man thinks he is but he is not!
At the end of the day the Lord will have the last word and every knee will bend unto Him. We have not followed His ways but our own ways and He knew we would. It is all written in the Book of books from the Lord of lords. All the wisdom of life and truth is contained in Holy Writ from a Holy God and despite man’s protests it is wholly true. The message is still the same, “Repent and follow Me” said the Master of the Universe. Amen.

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