In Matthew 24 Jesus is sitting with his disciples and they ask him about how they will know when he is coming again. He tells them that many will be deceived by false teaching. He warns of wars, famine, earthquakes, terrible persecution. Each coming like birth pains, which in my mind means they will only keep getting stronger and worse until the end. (I encourage you to read it for yourself if you are not familiar with it. Matt 24) It seems to me that unless you have not watched the news at all you would have to agree that possibly this is happening. Christian persecution around the world is getting worse. That and wars and disease and immense suffering around the globe seems to just be getting worse:
- In China China's Christians fear new persecution after latest wave of church demolitions. July 5, 2014
- In Ukraine Putin's Complicated Game in Ukraine June 25, 2014
- In Israel You don't even need a headline here. Just read anything on BBC's Mid-East page.
- In West Africa- Ebola- Liberia's Health System is falling apart Aug 10, 2014
- In Nigeria Boko Haram Overruns Town Killing Dozens Aug 7, 2014 (This is the same Islamic extremists that kidnapped those school girls)
- In Iraq ISIS Beating Iraqis and Kurds Aug 9,2014
Now, I'm not trying to be an alarmist. I'm just trying to remind all of us, myself included, that we may be running out of time. If I knew I would see Jesus tomorrow what would I do differently today? Would I waste as much time on facebook? Would I hesitate to share with people I don't usually talk to? Would I re-evaluate how I use every minute of my day?
And in piling up all these articles I feel like I need to do something. If you feel the same I want to encourage you to hit your knees. We Christians need to feel burdened and we need to pray. Cry out to God for the salvation of Islamic Muslims. Pray on behalf of persecuted Christians in China, Nigeria and Iraq. Pray for those living in terror of death in West Africa, that they would trust God when no one else can save them. Pray for God's love to prevail in the Middle East and for justice for his chosen people. Pray most of all for God's salvation to come to the whole earth. Pray now because we are running out of time!