In this time of political elections the various parties are falling all over themselves to promise more freedom and free things to the voters but, what is the essence of true freedom? I think Scripture has the clearest answer to this question. Paul wrote to the Galatians –
“It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery.” – Gal. 5:1 (NASB)
“Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.” – Gal. 5:1 (KJV)
The King James translation has it “Stand fast” in other words we have to struggle and fight to maintain the freedom Christ gave us on the cross. So what do we have to struggle and fight against? Continue reading
As we approach what many are calling the ‘end of the age’, we need to re-examine what Scriptures tell us about these days. I want to aim this article squarely at the professing church of Jesus Christ.
Jesus taught that there would be wheat and tares in the Church right up to the end –
“Another parable He put forth to them, saying: “The kingdom of heaven is like a man who sowed good seed in his field; but while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat and went his way. But when the grain had sprouted and produced a crop, then the tares also appeared. So the servants of the owner came and said to him, ‘Sir, did you not sow good seed in your field? How then does it have tares?’ He said to them, ‘An enemy has done this.’ The servants said to him, ‘Do you want us then to go and gather them up?’ But he said, ‘No, lest while you gather up the tares you also uproot the wheat with them. Let both grow together until the harvest, and at the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, “First gather together the tares and bind them in bundles to burn them, but gather the wheat into my barn.” – Matt. 13:24-30
My articles concentrate on truth because God’s truth is the only way to set anyone truly free. We have just celebrated the feast of Passover, which all about freedom from slavery but, Jesus taught that he who sins is a slave to sin. What good is it to be freed from Egypt if the sins of Egypt are still in your heart? We have all struggled with this battle and have all fallen to the temptations of Egypt (the world). But, that doesn’t negate the power of the blood of the Lamb to do it’s work of deliverance when mixed with faith and obedience because God stands behind that Lamb! And He revealed the secret of overcoming the sin –
“For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren.” – Rom. 8:29
As we approach the end of the age there are some very important truths Christians need to bear in mind and they are highlighted in three Scripture passages:
- Isaiah 60:1-3 “Arise, shine; For your light has come! And the glory of the LORD is risen upon you. For behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, And deep darkness the people; But the LORD will arise over you, And His glory will be seen upon you. The Gentiles shall come to your light, And kings to the brightness of your rising.” This is a message to God’s people. Some will go into deep darkness and some will grow brighter with the glory of the Lord. At the end of the age the Lord will arise and shine on His faithful people and they will be shining brighter and brighter. Sadly, the darkness will also be increasing until it becomes “deep darkness”.
- Matthew 13:1-9, 36-43 This is the parable of the wheat and the tares. It is spoken to the church. Both wheat and tares will be there side by side until the very end when the angels will gather out the tares and throw them into the fire. The tares look like the wheat but, they do not bear good fruit.
- Revelation 22:10-12 “And he said to me, “Do not seal the words of the prophecy of this book, for the time is at hand. He who is unjust, let him be unjust still; he who is filthy, let him be filthy still; he who is righteous, let him be righteous still; he who is holy, let him be holy still. And behold, I am coming quickly, and My reward is with Me, to give to every one according to his work.” This is a message from God saying, ‘If you want to be unjust, go on, live it up, you don’t have long! If you want to be filthy, be still more filthy. But, if you are righteous, be still more righteous and if you are holy, be more holy.’ In other words it is the parting of the ways. It also points out that righteousness cannot be static – you cannot stand still, you are either becoming more righteous or you are slipping backward. There can be no accommodation with wickedness, you must overcome it.