TITLE: TWO SIDES OF THE SAME COIN
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Subtitle: Signs Which Bring Terror To The Hearts Of Unbelievers Hold Comfort For God's People
God's judgment upon sin is as certain as death and taxes! And all who are under His condemnation face eternal punishment, whether they believe it or not. Many are like the kid who "whistles while walking by a graveyard"--trying desperately to convince himself of a non-existent bravado. At some level of consciousness, all men everywhere have a sense of accountability for their actions. So even if it only involves something like following a superstitious ritual for "good luck," attempts will be made to shift the odds in their favor. Deep down they know disaster is lurking around the corner, but for the most part they refuse to deal with it.
This inability to confront reality is the primary reason why so many resort to drugs, alcohol, sex, etc., as a means of escape. Life is more than they can handle and any method of "feeling better"--no matter how transient--is eagerly sought. Of course none of them understand the spiritual basis for their behavior and because of this, many things outside their control will stampede them like cattle. Of course Satan is keenly aware of this human tendency and utilizes it often to move masses of people to do his bidding.
But as incomprehensible as it is to the unbeliever, throughout history God has used (and continues to use) such things to exact judgment upon individuals and nations--calamities in which His own saints often suffer along with the ungodly! And this undeniable principle of God's Word is something that needs to be stressed today, but is being ignored by preachers who should know better. They are so utterly consumed with filling pews that the dark clouds overhead are not being heeded. There is a desperate need for the alarm to be sounded and with God's help we want to try to alert as many as we can. The Rapture of the Church is a blessed prospect, but in no way does it mean all of us will be spared persecution and even death in the interim. The Tribulation Period will be God's judgment upon the nation of Israel in particular and the rest of the world in general. But while mankind awaits that fateful hour, retribution will continue to be applied whenever and wherever necessary to ensure His divine plan is carried out. So all of us need to wake up and realize that sometimes "collateral damage" from such instances will include God's people.
When bad things happen, we must cling to the precious truth that "....all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose" (Rom.8:28, KJV). Yes, believer, when sickness, disease, war, hurricanes, earthquakes or other disasters destroy our earthly possessions and take lives that are precious to us, it is for our ultimate good. In the long run it makes us stronger. God either causes or allows such things to occur and sometimes judgment is involved--if not upon us directly, then upon our neighbors or nation.
In one of King David's Psalms He expresses the truth that when we pray, sometimes God's answer involves "fearful and glorious things":
"By fearful and glorious things [that terrify the wicked, but make the godly sing praises] do You answer us in righteousness--rightness and and justice--O God of our salvation, You Who are the confidence and hope of all the ends of the earth, and of those far off on the seas;  Who by Your might have founded the mountains, being girded with power;  Who still the roaring of the seas, the roaring of their waves, and the tumult of the peoples;  So that those who dwell in earth's farthest parts are afraid at nature's signs of Your presence; You make the places where morning and evening have birth to shout for joy" Psalm 65:5-8 (Parallel Bible, KJV/Amplified Bible commentary).
From East to West ("where morning and evening have birth") all humans are confronted by signs of God's power and presence in nature. Earthquakes, hurricanes, typhoons and tornadoes strike terror in the hearts of men--and rightly so, because of their destructive force. But after the sun comes from behind the clouds and the dust settles, God's people will still praise Him through the tears. As the patriarch Job once said,
"Though He slay me, yet will I trust in Him...." Job 13:15a (KJV).
Such behavior by believers is both a powerful testimony to those "who have no hope"! (1 Thess.4:13) and something that brings glory to our Lord and Savior.
Another aspect of judgment has been deemed "man's inhumanity to man." The cruelty of humans against their own kind has often been used of God to judge individuals and entire nations. Acts of war continue to plague us and millions around the world die needlessly as religions, ideologies, and despots vie for supremacy in clashes of will and quests for power. Our young men and women are currently shedding their blood in Afganistan and Iraq ostensibly to "protect America's freedom," but history usually reveals such intrusions to be smokescreens promoting agendas unknown to the public at large. But in any case, whether it is a raging battle in the trenches or on a smaller scale in our neighborhoods--people will continue to suffer and die because this is the legacy of human depravity! When it will touch us personally and what the outcome will be is known only to God. But sooner or later it will come. For some of us it will be persecution by those who disagree with our beliefs. And in the epistle to the Philippians, the Apostle Paul spoke about such persecution and how we must react to it:
"And do not [for a moment] be frightened or intimidated in anything by your opponents and adversaries, for such [constancy and fearlessness] will be a clear sign (proof and seal) to them of [their impending] destruction; but [a sure token and evidence] of your deliverance and salvation, and that from God.  For you have been granted [the privilege] for Christ's sake not only to believe--adhere to, rely on and trust--in Him but also to suffer in His behalf" Philippians 1:28-29 (Parallel Bible, KJV/Amplified Bible commentary, emphasis mine).
The same sun that melts the ice, hardens the clay. And, as the title of this article indicates, there are two sides to a coin. Disasters that terrifiy the ungodly will evoke praise from believers--even in the midst of suffering--because we know and love the One Who brings it to pass. Subjecting a child to painful medical procedures is never pleasant for a parent, but they are sometimes necessary. And as God's children, we must always be mentally and emotionally prepared to accept whatever He deems necessary for the moment. Then when we maintain our testimony for Christ in spite of the circumstances, honor and glory accrue to Him. Such stedfastness in the face of persecution and turmoil--as demonstrated by Christian martyrs of the past--is clearly supernatural in origin because it transcends human nature. Our God extends grace in the hour of trial and sustains His own, so we can face the future with confidence. Plus the passage of Scripture in Philippians tells us that fearlessness in the face of persecution is a clear sign to the ungodly of their impending destruction! They may cause us much suffering and even take our lives, but they cannot possibly deprive us of our eternal home with the Lord Jesus Christ. And their evil against us will be avenged to a degree infinitely greater than we could ever muster on our own:
"You have heard that it was said, An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth,  But I say to you, Do not resist the evil man [who injures you]; but if any one strikes you on the right jaw or cheek, turn to him the other one too" Matthew 5:39-39 (Parallel Bible, KJV/Amplified Bible commentary).
"Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave the way open for [God's] wrath; for it is written, Vengeance is Mine, I will repay (requite), says the Lord.  But, if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals upon his head" Romans 12:19-20 (Parallel Bible, KJV/Amplified Bible commentary).
In other words, God's way to "get even" with those who mistreat us is for us to repay evil with good! (Years ago I heard a comedian comment on this principle by saying, "Love your enemies and drive 'em nuts!) When we respond in such a totally unexpected manner, there is a strong probability that the enemy's conscience will bother them--but even if it does not, repaying good for evil "heaps burning coals upon his head." Ultimately, God's vengeance upon those who refuse to repent is exacted by everlasting torment in the lake of fire (Rev.19:20) and by following His instructions, we increase the degree of that punishment.
So never despair believer, because "greater is He that is in you than he that is in the world" (1 John 4:4, KJV). The Holy Spirit of God literally indwells us--possesses us as His own--and His power is infinitely greater than the "[demon] spirit that still constantly works in the sons of disobedience--the careless, the rebellious and the unbelieving, who go against the purposes of God" (Eph.2:2b, Parallel Bible, KJV/Amplified Bible commentary).
We can--and should--face the future unafraid of what men can do to us because Jesus Christ has already insured our ultimate victory! The specter of death terrifies the ungodly, but in a way that they can not possibly understand--it signals graduation day for us. Physical death is but a transition from one sphere of reality to another and the glorious prospect for the believer is that in that very moment, our spirit will pass into the eternal presence and comfort of the Lord. Then at the Rapture of the Church, our spirit will be reunited with a glorified body--just like the one now occupied by our Savior:
"Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is" 1 John 3:2 (KJV, emphasis mine).
Of course for those still alive at the time, the Rapture will involve an instantaneous removal from earth--with the body being changed (1 Cor. 15:52) and glorified in the process. So the "blessed hope" of Titus 2:13 is that of our triumphant return to earth with Jesus Christ--the King of kings and Lord of lords (Rev.19:16). Fear death? Can you think of any reason why we should????
If you have been born again and received Jesus Christ as your personal Savior, but have been very lukewarm in your spiritual walk with Him, you need to immediately ask Him for forgiveness and for renewal. He will instantly forgive you, and fill your heart with the joy of the Holy Spirit. Then, you need to begin a daily walk of prayer and personal Bible Study.
If you have never placed your trust in Jesus Christ as your Savior, but have come to sense His reality and the approaching End of the Age, and want to receive His FREE Gift of Eternal Life, you can do so now, in the privacy of your home. Once you truly believe in Him as Lord and Savior, you are spiritually Born Again, and are as assured of Heaven as if you were already there. Then, you can rest assured that the Kingdom of Antichrist will not touch you spiritually. If you would like to become Born Again, turn to our Salvation Page now.
We hope you have been blessed by this ministry, which seeks to educate and warn people, so that they can see the coming New World Order—Kingdom of Antichrist—in their daily news.
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