Perhaps no other need for us is greater than achieving a clear focus about our role as Christians in the darkening days of the end of this age!
As the world teeters on the edge of ever-unfolding volatile and dangerous events, we know that there is more to come—much more! In very direct and sobering terms, Jesus said that we would come to a time of trouble that would be taking place all over the world, calling this period just “‘…the beginning of sorrows’” (Matthew 24:8).
He went on to address His disciples—who would be alive in this prophetic period—saying that they would not know exact dates, but that they must watch and be ready. The inference is to live in a constant state of readiness.
One danger we are warned about is to think that Jesus is delaying His return. The fruits of that attitude would cause us to start losing our focus on God’s Kingdom.
In Matthew 24, Jesus spoke of an “‘evil servant’” who “‘…begins to beat his fellow servants, and to eat and drink with the drunkards’” (verses 48 and 49).
In Luke 21, Jesus is quoted in more detail about those living in this tumultuous generation: “‘But take heed to yourselves, lest your hearts be weighed down with carousing, drunkenness, and cares of this life, and that Day come on you unexpectedly’” (verse 34); and, “‘Watch therefore, and pray always that you may be counted worthy to escape all these things that will come to pass, and to stand before the Son of Man’” (verse 36).
One way we can sharpen our focus to be able to clearly understand the unfolding of end time events is to be a part of the preaching of the gospel of the Kingdom of God. We need to participate by reading, listening to and watching the messages given through the Church: member letters; weekly updates; booklets; StandingWatch programs; sermons and sermonettes; and building the bonds of fellowship to strengthen one another. On this last point, we have this reminder:
“And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, AND SO MUCH THE MORE as you see the Day approaching” (Hebrews 10:24-25).
Those who do these things—and continue to do them—are the “chosen ones,” the “special treasure” of God. We have God’s promise to those of His servants who remain faithful in these awesome times of trial: “‘And unless those days were shortened, no flesh would be saved; but FOR THE ELECT’S SAKE those days will be shortened’” (Matthew 24:22). Never lose sight of God the Father; of our Savior Jesus Christ; of our need to use mightily and consistently the power of the Holy Spirit; and of the promise that awaits us in the everlasting Kingdom of God–the focus for Christians, clearly.