Jesus is Our Strength!

Psalm 68:1-3 ESV

“God shall arise, his enemies shall be scattered;
and those who hate him shall flee before him!
As smoke is driven away, so you shall drive them away;
as wax melts before fire,
so the wicked shall perish before God!
But the righteous shall be glad;
they shall exult before God;
they shall be jubilant with joy!”

Enemies of God

Who are the enemies of God? They are all those who refuse to bow to him as Lord, who will not come underneath his authority, and who refuse to turn from their sins to walk in obedience to his commands. They are also those who oppose the teachings of his word, and who twist the Scriptures for their own advantage to deceive naïve minds, to lead them away from Jesus.

Many of them know the way of the cross, too. Many of them even profess faith in Jesus Christ, but by their lifestyles they deny him. They have known the truth, for they were taught the truth, but they chose the lie, instead. They know the way of righteousness, but they want to continue living in sin, and so they reject God’s righteousness to fulfill the lusts of their flesh.

The church which has unequally yoked together with the world and with the government (state church) is an enemy of God. For, she does not serve Jesus Christ as her only Lord, but her loyalties are divided between the world and God, and so she ends up following the world over the Lord Jesus.

She not only unequally yoked together with the unbelieving world, and she not only is following the world in place of God (or above God), but she turned the house of the Lord (his body) into a marketplace, and she is marketing the church just like any other business. And, her target audience is the world, so she conforms the church to the world to win the world.

So, to “win the world,” she has also diluted the gospel message to make it more appealing and palatable to the ungodly. Therefore, she has removed the message of the cross of Christ – the part where it says that Jesus died for us that we might die with him to sin and live to him and to his righteousness.

And, she replaced the gospel of Jesus with a cheap grace gospel which requires no death to sin, no submission to Christ as Lord, and no following of Jesus Christ in obedience to his commands, which is lawlessness.

Scattered

So, the Lord has scattered her. He broke her up. He separated her by closing the doors to her buildings in hopes to lead her away from man-made religion, and away from false gods, back to the cross of Jesus Christ, and back to making him her only Lord and master.

And, even though some congregations are beginning to gather in person again, it is very constraining, for they have to follow specific guidelines set down by the government regarding how they can conduct their gatherings, and the congregants are still being required to social distance and/or to wear masks. So, it isn’t like it was before. It is not very “seeker-friendly” now.

It is not very comfortable now. It is not as much fun as it was before. And, I would imagine that these “churches” will begin to lose those who were there just for the fun and entertainment and socialization. For, all of that is being greatly hindered now. They can’t do all the fun and games they did before and still follow the guidelines set down for them by the government.

And, all this is a moving target, too, for so much unrest is going on in our nation and in the world right now, so things could change by the day or by the week, and new rules will follow suit. So, even if they can meet today, with severe or moderate limitations, tomorrow could be a different picture.

Division

I would suspect that all this will have a way of dividing those who were just there for the party from those who are serious about their walks of faith with Jesus Christ. Those whose testimonies of faith in Jesus Christ were superficial only will either change, and commit their lives to Jesus, or they will dessert and abandon the church, the faith, and Jesus altogether.

For, when tribulation comes to the church, which it has, it will have a way of separating the sheep from the goats. There will be no more room for apathy and for spiritual laziness. We will either choose to follow the Lord wholeheartedly, to the death, or we will choose to follow the world, instead, and to take the mark of the beast.

And, just know here that this “mark” of the beast, although it may have a physical form to it eventually, is first and foremost taking on the character, the pattern, the nature, and the traits of this beast. It is adopting the ways of this sinful world into our lives as the pattern that we follow instead of us following in the ways of the Lord in holiness and righteousness. It is taking on the mind and heart of the world, instead of the heart and mind of God.

And, those who choose the world over Jesus Christ, and who decide to be in solidarity with the world instead of being in unity with the mind of Christ, will perish in their sins, and not have the hope of eternal life with God, even if they once made a profession of faith in Jesus Christ (Rom. 8:1-17; Gal. 5:16-21; Gal. 6:7-8; Rom. 2:6-8; Eph. 5:3-6; 1 Jn. 1:5-9; 1 Jn. 2:3-6).

The Righteous Glad

The reason I believe the righteous are glad and will be glad through all of this is not because people are turning away from Jesus Christ to follow Satan, instead. If they are truly righteous, they grieve over lost souls.

But they are glad, and they will be glad because they are seeing evil being exposed for what it is, and therefore the truth is being revealed. And, some people are beginning to have their eyes opened to see both the lies and the truth. And, I believe this is going to result in a great awakening.

I am already beginning to see the beginnings of this take place, I believe, as pure evil is being displayed before us daily. But discerning the evil requires that we get alone with God, that we get into his word, that we humble ourselves before God, and that we inquire of him regarding what we are seeing with our eyes, and that we listen to him speak truth to our hearts.

For evil takes many different forms. And, one of those forms involves much deception and the manipulation of human minds. So, a lot of what we see in videos or we hear or read in the news is being manufactured to deceive us, and to get us angry, and to incite hatred and division. And, that is because they want us fighting with each other so that they have an excuse to conquer us (see Rev. 13).

For, this is where all of this is headed. It is headed to the rule of the beast and to the fulfillment of prophecy of Scripture regarding the last days before Jesus returns. And, so things will continue to get crazier, and lawlessness will increase. Oh, and the Lord showed me something about that today.

When the church diluted the gospel of Jesus Christ, and they did away with his commandments, and they began to teach that we don’t have to repent of our sins, and that we don’t have to walk in obedience to our Lord’s commands, they turned the gospel of Jesus Christ into lawlessness.

And, so we are now seeing the fruit of that choice by the church. We are seeing the fruit of many years of the church entertaining herself and trying to win the world to their businesses falsely called “church.”

Because the church in America largely turned her back on Jesus Christ to follow the ways of the world, instead of going out into the world with the true gospel, and because she taught a gospel of lawlessness, we now live in a society which is increasingly becoming lawless, but which fulfills prophecy.

So, these are difficult times. Certainly I don’t know God’s timetable in all of this, but we can see daily how what is going on is fulfilling Scripture, and we can see how our world is moving much closer to this mark of the beast and to the persecution of the church all across the globe, not just in some countries. So, people of God, get ready to have to stand on your faith or to not stand at all. But we don’t have to go it alone. For, Jesus is our strength!

Hide Me, Rock of Ages

Brantley C. George, 1946

Oh Thou blessed rock of ages
Trusting now dear Lord in Thee
Keep me till my journey’s ended
Till Thy blessed face I see

Keep me when the storm clouds gather;
‘Til the sun comes shining through;
Keep me ‘til my work is over;
‘Til I bid this world adieu.

Hide me oh blessed rock of ages
‘Til Thy blessed face I see
When the storm around me rages
Rock of ages hide Thou me

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