Not Be At Once

End of the Age Progression: Will it awaken you or lull you?      August 20, 2914

It seems like the world keeps on going as it continues to unravel. Most of the flash points of Christ’s return and the end of this age seem to be popping up, then going away, then another pops up, then goes away.

In Luke 21:5-26, Jesus describes the progression of the end of this age and states, “And when you hear of wars and tumults, do not be terrified, for these things must first take place, but the end will not be at once” (Luke 21:9).

The point that I would like to expound upon is, but the end will not be at once. Jesus is explaining to his disciples and to us the progression of end-time indicators that include the destruction of the temple, the fall of Jerusalem, then the coming of false prophets misleading many saying, “The time is at hand,” and then Christ adds that all nations will become distressed and perplexed with all the trouble coming upon the world. The progression will hit a pitch or crescendo that will cause great fear, as the age of the gentiles ends.

Need for Endurance

In verse 19, Jesus says, “By your endurance you will gain your lives.” This warning is not just for the original disciples, but also for every disciple down through history, especially for us in the last moments of this age.

I am afraid that most believers are ignorant of the trial of endurance set before us concerning staying alert while enduring the last “years” of this age.

Satan’s Trap

As the signs keep popping up and then going away, many who have awakened to the fact that we are living in the last times, go back to sleep. Jesus warned, “But watch yourselves lest your hearts be weighed down with dissipation and drunkenness and cares of this life, and that day come upon you suddenly like a trap” (verse 34). (Are we learning what it means to watch ourselves?)

Now is the time to peel away from the love of this age and the cares of this life, and learn to discern and resist the powers of a very perverted culture; a culture that vexes the soul and deadens the spirit.

As a believer, if we hear the word but do not act, then we will become “at risk” of being caught in Satan’s trap and locked out of the marriage feast even as believers. That day is swiftly approaching, leaving us less and less time to prepare. Many are listening but are now being lulled back to sleep. Just hearing the truth and believing will not protect and strengthen us for what is coming, for the worst is yet to come. James writes, “But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves” (James 1:22).

Many say to themselves, “everything is delayed” or “we have been hearing these warnings for years, and it has not yet come.” This may not be the exact thoughts, but these type of thoughts represent a widespread nonchalant attitude for many believers and reflects a hardened condition of the heart and a passive mindset.

No, the end has not come yet, because Jesus said the end would not be at once. These pauses and seeming delays are God’s grace and mercy, giving his people time to wake up and get ready through long-suffering and by enduring trials. The biggest trial to overcome is staying vigilant year after year during these cycles.

Cycles will End in a Crescendo

Notice the cycles of signs, troubles, and worldwide disorder are increasing in frequency and intensity. Jesus called these cycles birth pangs of the coming kingdom. We should all be familiar with the progression of childbirth and how giving birth often becomes drawn out with delays and false labor pains. When the day arrives, mother and father should be ready, for on that day everything changes and the sure pain of childbirth demands full attention and preparedness.

Mothers who learn to pay attention to the cycles of pain in frequency and intensity become ready when that moment arrives.

We should always be alert and be ready as Christ stated, “Now when these things begin to take place, straighten up and raise your heads, because your redemption is drawing near” (verse 28).

Use this time to straighten up and get ready, starting now, do not let the end of this age progression lull you back to sleep. 

Copyright © 2014 Charles Pretlow All rights reserved

 

 

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