Tuesday, September 15, 2015
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I hope your world map, if you have one, is one you bought recently. Because the map is changing so rapidly! I remember when our daughter went on a Gospel music team a few years go - some years ago now - to Estonia, right after the breakup of the Soviet Republic. We didn't know a lot about it then. But it was one of the Baltic Republics that had become part of the Soviet Union and now was part of a great independents movement within the Soviet Union and then a country of their own. Well, then we were hearing about Estonians, and Latvians, and Lithuanians, and Palestinians, and Armenians, because the world isn't necessarily being defined any more by those national boundaries that somebody set up after a war sometime. The world is having an ethnic explosion! It's supposed to.
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "The Explosion Before Jesus Comes."
Our word for today from the Word of God comes from Matthew 24, when the disciples say to Jesus, "When will this happen and what will be the sign of Your coming and the end of the age?" And Jesus proceeded to give a description of the world before He returns. In verse 7 of Matthew 24, He said, "Nation will rise against nation." That's one of the signs of His coming.
I looked up that word in the original Greek language that the New Testament was written in, and the word is actually "ethnos", so the plural is "ethnoi". Now, what do we get from that? Obviously, we get ethnic. In other words God seems to be saying that just before Christ comes back, ethnic will be rising against ethnic. Well, that's a pretty accurate description of what's happening in our world. Countries are breaking apart because ethnic is rising against ethnic.
The political patchworks that put together different nationalities under one nation are coming unraveled all the time. People are reverting to their ethnic identity, and they're tearing up the landscape with ethnos versus ethnos-nationality group versus nationality group.
It's also interesting that Scripture describes the last days as a time when people will be saying, according the 1 Thessalonians 5, "Peace and safety. Then sudden destruction will come." There's ethnic turmoil, but there's people obsessed with talking about peace and safety.
That's a lot like what Jesus described. Look, I don't know when Jesus is coming back, and you've got to be suspicious of anybody who thinks they do. But I will say that the world looks more like the world Jesus said He'd come back to than I think it ever has.
You know, you look and people are not even sure who's in charge any more or who's in control of the situation. Politicians seem powerless to solve international problems, and even super powers don't seem very powerful any more.
I love what one young Christian said when he read the book of Revelation for the first time. The guy who gave him the Bible didn't tell him where to read, so he ends up reading in the Book of Revelation. And he said, "Well, I didn't understand anything except one thing." The guy said, "What did you understand?" He said, "We win." You got that right!
There are no surprises to my Lord. Every night as you watch the evening news, the growth of terrorism more and more unpredictable, the unraveling of things we always have counted on. Four words you should say over and over again, "Jesus Christ is Lord. Jesus Christ is Lord." He's Lord of whatever you're about to see on the news. And certainly every earthly kingdom will be handled, every event of history, every prophecy, will be handled by your Heavenly Father. By the way, don't you think He could handle what's worrying you right now? This Lord of history is Lord of yours.
Christ is in control of what you may have lost control of, and He's chosen us to live for Him in incredible times; explosive times, perhaps destiny times. Times where we might be eye witnesses to the long prophesied last chapter-the explosion and the grand finale of the return of Jesus.