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But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. (2 Timothy 3:1)
A very good friend and fellow blogger, Dr.Lyle Rapacki, wrote this absolutely powerful message on surrendering your life to God and not to the things of this world. So often we get caught up in our own struggles and try to work them out as the world does. That will never bring you peace. This world is perishing. It has become a place of darkness and destruction. The hearts of most have grown cold and lawlessness abounds.
The good news is that Christ is getting ready to return to make all things new. Is your heart ready to meet him? I pray that you will take the time to read this message by Lyle and let it help to give you understanding and hope to know that Christ is with you to the end of time.
Written by Lyle Rapacki from The Olive Branch Report,
I just finished a radio interview with Pastor James David Manning on the Manning Report. If you have not listened to the Manning Report – you should! I have been privileged to spend time with Pastor Manning and his gracious wife, Elizabeth, in their Harlem/New York City home. I have been equally blessed to be a guest multiple times on his engaging radio program. Today’s radio interview was focused on my previous article “America’s Middle Class is Crumbling.” Pastor Manning asked a pointed question (he often does) as to why I think the people are silent about it all? This question caused me to jump in my seat as I attempted to share some thoughts on the subject (I was excited at the offer) but I also sensed the Ru-ach-Ha-K0desh (Holy Spirit) quickened me to share even more than time on the show permitted.
The Emissary Sha-’ul (Apostle Paul) instructed his disciple (student) Timothy: “But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power” (2 Timothy 3:1-5).
WOW! A lot packed into that scripture. One key element strongly suggests that the last days people will not be a people who do not know God; just the opposite! These will be people who claim to know God, practice a form of godliness, but will deny the power of God if you look close at their lives. They will be religious people – you know; go to church, sing in the choir, direct the bake sale, yard sale, youth pavilion, candle and flower committee, and the all important church clean-up crew, with a little time left over for the prayer team. But the Apostle is sounding an alarm that these folks have a form, an image of godliness but clearly their heart is not right with the Lord or the walk He wants for them. Their heart has not surrendered to God, they are not walking in submission (cooperation) to His Word or His Son’s teachings and examples; therefore, while their public posture may look good the inner man, their true character, is loving this world and the things of this world – especially money and the material dimension. Think on this…money is God’s greatest rival. Money tangibly represents power, security, prestige, control over our own affairs, dominance. Fellowship with Yeshua (Jesus) signifies intimacy, love, sacrifice, and seeking God’s character for your life; which, in part, means thinking of others, giving away rather than gathering, loving by example and giving joyfully to watch others celebrate as they receive. The form of truly following God is measured by your love for others, your love for God’s Son Yeshua (Jesus), your love for His Word, and the natural instinct of loving is to give. The instinct of materialism is gathering, accumulating, hoarding, guarding, value as the world values – SELF!
The power and political Elites of this world are in the process of collapsing this world into a Satanic driven One-World economy, government, and religion. Read my previous article “America’s Middle Class is Crumbling” here at The Olive Branch Report, and see some of the numbers I site to demonstrate how the economy is slipping into chaos and total collapse. Do not be deceived by the media propagandists and lying government officials who have a stake in the unfolding New-World Order. We are on the verge of a very calculated and full economic collapse, and what transpires in Washington, D.C. on a daily basis is but Kabuki Theater to keep us entertained and dumb to the reality setting in all around us. We are living in the looming shadow of biblically predicted catastrophic events, but the predominant majority of the church are asleep or, like the Apostle Paul wrote: “having a form of godliness but denying its power.” WAKE UP church…come out of your diabolically induced slumber. “Therefore let us not sleep, as others do, but let us watch and be sober” (1 Thessalonians 5:6).
If we are truly followers of Yeshua Ma-shi-ach (Jesus the Messiah) then don’t live for your possessions. Let your possessions do good; be ready to give, willing to share. What riches have been granted to you are given so God can bless others through you. As I wrote in my previous article, financial crisis allow us to come to new levels of deeper faith, causing us to become dependent on God and His provision, rather than our own abilities, our own strengths. God’s Word teaches that the last days will also cause a preoccupation with money and materialism, and that greed will abound causing even more conflict among men and among nations. I am beseeching you while there is still a little time, seek ye first the Kingdom of God and all else will be added to you according to His riches. Jesus taught to study the birds and flowers, for the God who cares for them will care for you (Matthew 6:25-34). The Emissary Sha-’ul (Apostle Paul) taught, “My God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:19). David of Psalms learned through experience, “the Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want” (Psalm 23).
We cannot stop the coming New-World Order with all of its’ calamity, destruction, and evilness. We can, however, rise-up in opposition to the spiritual roots feeding the New-World Order and accompanying tyrannical government, humanistic and satanic worship and religion, and unmitigated greed. We can stand and be a blessing in the midst of the storm. We can stand and be a light to the otherwise darkness that will permeate the world; to show others what the true light of the Gospel looks like. We can demonstrate true righteousness, not merely the form thereof; true faith in God’s Word by applying it, and love for others by sharing the blessings the Lord chooses to provide us as a means to bless others. Begin today…look around and ask the Lord for the opportunity to grow in your faith by quietly helping another who may need a bill paid, four bags full of groceries, a tank of gas, an oil change, utilities paid…and the list can go on. Try this, and then go to church and sing in the choir, help with the bake sale, or the youth, or better yet, to the prayer team for now you will truly have something in which to bow your head and close your eyes.
God always has the power to help you overcome
So much is happening in this world and the struggle to survive is getting more difficult. Everyone has been affected in some way by the economy as jobs are scarce and homes are being foreclosed on daily. The increase of broken marriages is staggering even among Christians. And it seems like so many health issues are affecting people everywhere. Though prayers are being offered, some may wonder if God’s power is enough to take us through.
The Apostle Paul said in 2 Timothy 1:12, “For I know whom I have believed and I am convinced that he is able to guard that which I give to him for this day“. That was a powerful statement coming from a man who in his lifetime was beaten, stoned, homeless and imprisoned. How could such faith come from Paul in the midst of all that he had to endure? It seems like God should have made Paul’s life a little easier since he was entrusted with bringing the good news of Christ to the lost. But God’s ways are higher.
The truth lies in the fact that Paul intimately KNEW the God he served. He was confident that he could have peace in his blessings as well as his trials. He understood that in all things, God was working out a perfect plan that would strengthen Paul in this life and earn him reward in heaven. The reality was that God had a purpose in using all that came against Paul to further his kingdom as he transformed Paul into the image of Christ. Paul was ready for the day when he would meet his Savior face to face. For that reason he believed that to die was gain and to go on living was for Christ. Paul was ready to do whatever was asked of him.
The grace that you need to face all of the challenges in your life as a believer is living in you! There is now no mountain of trouble and no sea of tears that can stop you from living an abundant life in Christ Jesus. The enemy can’t do anything to you that God knows will destroy you. You can’t lose the battle when the power of Christ is your force and your strength. You must always remember that God knows your struggles and your pain. It was by his will that you were created and by his word he spoke the universe into existence. There is nothing hidden from the all-knowing, all present God.
God will always be sovereign over all that you go through. In the book of Job, we read that Satan had to first ask permission to come against Job. Satan wanted to destroy Job but God knew that the testing was only going to make Job stronger in his faith and more blessed than before. He knew his power would be more than enough for Job to overcome all of the enemy’s attacks. Do you not know that the same is true for you and in your circumstance? The wind, the waves and every storm and battle that you face must first come before Christ who allows only that which he will cause to be used for your good despite how painful it seems now. Beloved, for that reason you must never give up. Your God is working out blessings in your life that you can’t even imagine! You may feel weak, but God will keep you from sinking if you will just keep your eyes on him.
In my own life, I am experiencing a struggle that is causing me much pain. There are times I also feel overwhelmed and weakened from the battle that never seems to end. It is difficult some mornings for me to just get out of bed. Yet in my heart, I know the God whom I have believed. I can trust through all things that God will not fail me. I may not see or feel him working out my problem, but I know that he is. When I get weary, I turn to his word and seek his strength. I have purposed in my heart to keep my trust in Christ no matter how dark the storm gets. Sometimes I write these posts through my tears. It is difficult but I know my Redeemer lives! He has taken me too far for me to give up now. Each day I grow in the strength that he gives me. All that I am going through has a purpose that God has designed and that he will work out in his perfect way.
It is my prayer that if you are in a difficult situation that you will give your pain to the One who paid the price to give you a future with hope. Jesus overcame all of our enemies and all of our problems by his death on the cross. There is nothing can can hold you in bondage if you will trust that God is bigger. I will be praying with you.
Dear Lord, there is so much darkness in this world and we are all struggling to stay in the battle. I pray for all of those who are just too weary to pray and who feel that you have given up on them. I stand in the gap for those who are hurting and I pray that you will lead them to your perfect peace. Let them feel your presence as you give them the knowledge that nothing will stop your plan and the future that you have ordained for them. You are more than able to guard all the pain and struggles that we give to you for this day. Open their eyes to see that you already have them surrounded by your angels who are greater than the troubles that come against them. Please give them an understanding of your enduring love. Amen