Monday, June 25, 2018

Pastor's Ponderings, June 25, 2018

Keep Hope Alive; God Is Staying With Us

No matter your political views, we can all agree that these are perilous times. People on all sides of the political spectrum are convinced their views are rational and logical while everyone else’s opinions are irrational and illogical.  Many believe our leaders do not tell the truth and are only serving their own self-interests.  The Bible says that we will hear about wars and rumors of war, earthquakes, and other disasters, but that the end of days is not yet.  These are simply the beginnings of anguish and trouble (Matthew 24:6-8).

What should those who love the Lord do in these trying times? First, it pleases God when we pray for our leaders (1 Timothy 2:1-3) because the effectual fervent prayers of the righteous are powerful in these dire situations (James 5:16b).  Second, we have to take a principled stand. In 1945, Dr. Gordon A. Eadie, in a journal called “Mental Hygiene,” wrote, “If they don’t stand for something, they will fall for anything.”  The Bible says that when the evil days come, we should stand (Ephesians 6:13).  

Third, we must ask for wisdom from God. Our academics are divided, our ecclesiastical leaders are supporting positions that they would have opposed a few years ago, and our political leaders cannot get consensus even in their own parties. God gives wisdom and understanding for these tough times (Proverbs 2:6).  We must not lose hope and give into despair since God is still in charge of man’s affairs. 

Truly, we live in tough times.  There is pain and suffering on every hand.  Thank God that all things work together for good for those who love Him (Romans 8:28). No matter what is going on in the world, we can be strong and courageous. God tells us not to worry or be afraid since He will always be there for us (Deuteronomy 31:6). 

Matthew 24:6-8
Amplified Bible (AMP)
You will continually hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not frightened, for those things must take place, but that is not yet the end [of the age]. 
For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and there will be famines and earthquakes in various places. 
But all these things are merely the beginning of birth pangs [of the intolerable anguish and the time of unprecedented trouble].

1 Timothy 2:1-3
New International Version (NIV)
I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— 
for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. 
This is good, and pleases God our Savior,

James 5:16b
New International Version (NIV)
16… The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.

Ephesians 6:13
New International Version (NIV)
13 Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.

Proverbs 2:6
New International Version (NIV)
For the LORD gives wisdom; from his mouth come knowledge and understanding.

Romans 8:28
New International Version (NIV)
28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

Deuteronomy 31:6
New International Version (NIV)
Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”

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