The End of Time

…seal up the book until the end of time; many will go back and forth, and knowledge will increase.”

We are living in a world of information always at our fingertips. It can be overwhelming and disconcerting, even oppressive. The ugliness flying at us like a swarm of mad hornets who had their nest disturbed, often unsettling us to our core. Sometimes it’s a more subtle way of erosion, but it still builds up into that final straw that broke the camel’s back.

Friends and family gatherings oftentimes turn into phone staring and swiping. People either don’t know what to say, or are too bored with the conversation and don’t know how to just enjoy others. I watch sometimes and try not to fall into the same trap. Social media invites us to catch up on our friends, except our friends have grown in number to a place where we can’t keep up with them. Fresh news headlines beckon, and red-faced, incited television anchors now scream at us, often calling evil good and good evil. Oftentimes they include us in their vitriol. We watch fascinated as we just can’t fathom how they can’t see the obvious, they are no longer news. It’s like a python or boa that circles and constricts their prey firmly in his grip, squeezing all the life out of them.

The Last Days

Do not fret because of evildoers, Nor be envious of the wicked; For there will be no prospect for the evil man; The lamp of the wicked will be put out. Proverbs 24:19-20

Rome is burning and Nero is fiddling. Here, those who represent Nero aren’t supposed to be in power, yet they are behind the scenes and increasingly in the forefront. We hear the Emperor murdered his own mother, and likely two of his wives. Very much like some in power today isn’t it? And the ancient writers claimed that Nero actually started the great fire of Rome, (interesting parallel to today’s fires), just so he could rebuild the way he wanted. Even in his mad wickedness, he still possessed a level of popular support that I see with the far left movement and probably others across the board.

And that seems to be so close to our times and seasons of today, the last days. The multitude of people putting darkness for light and light for darkness. Worse yet are those who say they are Christians (I don’t know if they are, not judging either way — I cannot know by their behavior, only by the gospel they did or did not believe). If they are, they have forgotten to humbly pray for our leaders, (even if they hate them), at the least they are disobeying His Word. We are to thank God for the good things they have done. Instead, they are out in public speaking evil of them in all manner of ways. Some of these naming Christ legalistically condemn others for supporting our President, or even for voting, citing we are not of this world or that we are carnal. But this is not where I am going with this article.

I am not saying we should not be informed about anything in this world. But this increased knowledge (that was prophesied about in Daniel 12), can be a seductive and even aggressive thing in our lives, that probably all of us need to temper with some help from His Word. And always in the knowledge of the spiritual battle we face.

I had a dream

No, not like Martin Luther King. I had a dream about a snake. Before I tell you about it, I am not of the faction that has dreams, attributes them to God, then makes a video about it, as if I am a some prophet. Likely I had the dream because that night I was telling someone about the rattlesnake that we had killed on the patio the prior week.

My dream made me ponder things of the Lord where it concerns our lives in this world. In it, I was outdoors on my patio speaking to someone, and off in the distance, I saw this large beautifully colored snake slithering our way. It was so unique and beautiful I was slightly mesmerized. I fixated on its very large triangular head with bulges over its eyes and to the sides (likely venomous).

The serpent was moving slowly. I stared, taking in all the plethora of vibrant colors, yet aware of the danger and ready to move. A large bright green head, with vivid orange, red and yellow — patches of even blues, and a variety of other iridescent colors. I wasn’t paying much attention to the body, although it too was just so colorful and awesome looking (and thick) like a King Cobra. Instead I was focused on the pit viper-like head. It was the biggest one I’d seen, with such brilliant colors that it completely captured my awe. Still, I was aware of danger, keeping my eye trained on it to move if it came my way. But before I could even react at all, it looked my way and sprung right at me. It seemed to cover 15-20 feet of ground, basically flying partially in the air as it lunged with fangs wide open. It happened so instantaneously, I couldn’t move other than to put my arm up. It was clear its intent was to attack me personally, and it sank its venomous fangs into my right arm. I instinctively grabbed its neck (close to the head) with my other hand, to keep it from biting me again (and to get it off me). As I squeezed tightly it changed in looks, yet fought viciously as I held on. But what was once a big beautiful head had started to wither (almost like it was losing it’s life blood), and it was devoid of those bright colors it was previously infused with.

Dream over. That was it!

I awoke with a large start, took a deep breath, and started praying, far more relaxed than I was sleeping. Things came to my mind from His Word and I started thinking of possibly writing this article — Lord willing.

Later in the day, I looked up images of snakes, knowing in my head nothing would come close my dream. A California Garter snake was brightly colored but nowhere near this snake, more like a very distant cousin. I wondered what it was like for them in the garden of Eden before Satan entered the one. Were they painted with a large variety of bright colors, like Joseph’s coat? Regardless, as Scripture tells us, some may look beautiful, but we need to be wary always.

But what I do, I will also continue to do, that I may cut off the opportunity from those who desire an opportunity to be regarded just as we are in the things of which they boast. For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into apostles of Christ. And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also transform themselves into ministers of righteousness, whose end will be according to their works. 2 Cor 11:12-15

Spiritual Battles

We are in a fierce spiritual battle in these last days. Satan knows his time is short. No one is exempt from his hatred, not even unbelievers. They are all made in the image of God, and he hates them too. He knows God loves them and desires that none of them should perish (2 Pet 3:9; 1 Tim 2:1-6). Satan desires that more and more will perish eternally, and fights to deceive people (2 Cor 4:3-6).

As the prince of the power of the air (Eph 2:2), he has much control of what goes out over the air waves — radio, television, phones, the internet. And we see too how this technology can grip us like iron to a strong magnet, both magnetizing us and repelling us at the same time. We have to be careful not to get too close or it can suck us in. We live in this world, but we are not of it. Stay close to the Shepherd, the only safe place to be in a world of wolves, roaring lions and serpents. Submit to God, resist the devil (James 4:7).

Following Jesus is hard, it’s a choice. A daily, an hourly, even a moment by moment choice. Here are some tangible things to consider from His Word to help, I’ve linked the Scriptures to make it easier:

Continuing in His Word

We need to choose the good part which will never be taken from us. Spending time with Him, continuing in His Word will help us become disciples, it will wash and cleanse us, keep us from sinning instruct us, give us wisdom and knowledge of Him and we will know the certainty of His Word of truth and we will be ready to answer others with certainty of His truth. Lk 10:38-42; John 8:30-31; Luke 10:38-42; Eph 5:26; Ps 119:9-11: John 17:17, Prov 22:17-21

Our Armor

We need to put our armor on. How can we focus on the good, if our eyes are always beholding the evil? Guard your heart and mind in Christ Jesus. I realize we cannot go out of this world, but we have to be careful how much it’s a part of our lives/focus/love. Do not love the things of this world (put God before all). How does that look? I believe it has to do with trying to put Him as our focus first, keeping our mind stayed on Him. When we stray, and we will, do it again. Praying in acknowledgement of more things, putting our trust in Him vs. our own feelings Eph 6:10-20; Phil 4:4-8; 1 John 2:15; Pr 3:5-6

Good vs. Evil

The Bible tells us to be wise to what’s good, and to try to be simple concerning evil. That’s where we should study the real thing vs. the counterfeit. Do it looking for His approval and no one else’s. God’s Word is truth and will give us discernment when we have our senses exercised by the strong meat of His Word. We know what good and evil is. Stay in the Light. Rom 16:19; 2 Tim 2:15; Jn 17:17; Heb 5:12-14; Is 5:20; Eph 5:8

Taking our minds/thoughts captive

For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: (for the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ. 2 Cor 10:3-5

Take Heart! Greater is He that is in us, than he who is in the world.

 

 

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