Saturday, March 29, 2008

Fearful Expectations vs. Peace

Reading: Luke 21

Focus: Luke 21:25,26

There will be…on the earth dismay among nations, in perplexity at the roaring of the sea and waves, men fainting from fear and the expectation of the things which are coming upon the world;”

In this passage Jesus is telling his disciples about future events. He didn’t want them to be deceived by any who would give misleading explanations of the events, and he did not want them to be terrified because of the events. Jesus spoke to them of things that would happen in their lifetime, but he also spoke of things in the distant future--our lifetime.

Jesus even told them of the coming destruction of Jerusalem in verse 20, then mentioned times beyond that event.

One part of what he shared that closely describes our time is verses 25 and 26. Haven’t we been perplexed at the “roaring of the sea and the waves?” We have experienced some of the most devastating hurricanes in history--the “roaring of the sea”. We have also been stunned by the power of tsunamis, giant waves of unimaginable force. And now we have “men fainting from fear and the expectation of the things which are coming upon the world.” We try to explain these devastating events, coming up with theories such as El Nino and Global Warming. Regardless of the accuracy of our theories, the great attention we give to them reveals our fear of what is to come.

But keep on the alert at all times, praying in order that you may have strength to escape all these things that are about to take place." (verse 36)

So what is our escape? The same as it was for the disciples (verses 16-19). “By your perseverance you will win your souls,” Luke 21:19. By believing and trusting God we won’t be misled by the hysteria surrounding these events. We will have wisdom when we should leave or avoid places of danger, and when we die (which we all do by the way) even then we will have gained eternal life. So what is there to fear? “When you see these things happening recognize that the kingdom of God is near,”Luke 21:31.

The kingdom of God is near. Have we entered it or are we still on the outside? Do we have a way of escape, or are we “fainting from fear”? Many are tired of being afraid of global warming, tsunamis and other disasters of nature and man. It is time to grasp a security that even death can’t destroy. In the words of Jesus, we find hope for this life and the next. “I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in Me shall live even if he dies….”

In Genesis 8:22 God promised that "While the earth remains, seedtime and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night shall not cease."

In spite of disasters, the earth will continue to sustain life until God brings the end. Nothing man does will cause these things to stop. But we will each face the end of our own time here. That is what we must be prepared for. If we are prepared for that, we don't need to live in fear of the future.
© 2008

1 comment:

bennet said...

Great reminders and encouragement. Nice post!