For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.
Recently, I’ve seen a sad, unbiblical trend coming from some (not all) prophetic, end-times teacher types. Words which wrongly convey defeat and giving up on those currently suffering because “it’ll all be over soon because Jesus is coming anyway.”
No. No. No. No. No. Do not receive these “resigning things over to evil” words from them.
I love my brothers in Christ, but I strongly disagree with their stance on this.
As followers of Christ, it is our responsibility to point people to the Word (who is Jesus, John 1:1), not our own opinions about things.
What does Jesus tell us to do?
Occupy till I come,” (Luke 19:13. KJV).
“Do business till I come,” (Luke 19:13, NKJV).
Jesus tells us, the church, to be about His Father’s business, the business of His Kingdom, until He returns. I’m unapologetically listening to Jesus. I will not be moved.
I’m going up fighting, Lord
In light of the great opposition to today’s church, I’ve said in recent months, “I’m not going down without a fight.” But then it hit me yesterday (probably via the much wiser Holy Spirit):
Wait a second. The only way I’m going is up with Jesus. And I’ll be going up fighting, Lord.
My Lord and Savior who ransomed me from sin and its punishment and purchased eternal security for me with His blood made the way for me to live forever with Him in eternity.
The words of Jesus, “My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me. And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand. My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of My Father’s hand,” (John 10:27-29).
Lord, You gave it all for Me. I’m going up fighting giving my all to You.
Getting back to the church being led astray by some teachers to give up on the suffering (and yes, this was the exact context of the messages I heard. People suffering vs. Jesus is coming back soon anyway). This is so unbiblical, I wanted to scream. (My son calls me dramatic. I call it expressive because of my creative bent. LOL!)
So what does God’s business look like? The business we are to be doing as the church, occupying ALL THE WAY UP UNTIL He returns?
“And as you go, preach, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons. Freely you have received, freely give,” (Matthew 10:7-8).
“And heal the sick there, and say to them, ‘The kingdom of God has come near to you,’” (Luke 10:9).
“Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,” (Matthew 28:19).
On the contrary, if the church bears the heart attitude for the world to see that we’ve given up on others, the suffering, and are just holding on until Jesus comes, then we convey…
- that we are disobedient to His Word (Luke 19:13) and don’t truly take Him for it.
- that our hearts have become hardened, and we are lacking the love, mercy, and compassion of Jesus Christ.
To the suffering a few years, a decade more or two, could feel like an eternity. How is this loving God and our neighbors as we love ourselves?
Would it not glorify God more to obey the Lord, preach His Kingdom, pray prayers of faith, and see people set free in every way? Saved, healed and delivered.
Why? Because it not only testifies that the Kingdom of God has come near to others in hopes they will accept Christ as Savior, it demonstrates the love of God whose Son’s body was broken, striped, and bled, so the suffering could be set free, including those of course who’ve already been born again.
It is written in Matthew 8:16-17, “When evening had come, they brought to Him many who were demon-possessed. And He cast out the spirits with a word, and healed all who were sick, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Isaiah the prophet, saying: “He Himself took our infirmities
And bore our sicknesses.” [see Isaiah 53:4; 1 Peter 2:24]
When I hear teachings like theirs that lack the mercy and compassion of Jesus Christ, I’m offended FOR Him, because they are sorely misrepresenting Him and His love and character.
“Then Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every sickness and every disease among the people. But when He saw the multitudes, He was moved with compassion for them,” (Matthew 9:35-36).
The full capacity of God dwells in every believer. Thus, we too must operate in likewise mercy and compassion towards those suffering from physical and spiritual infirmities until the moment we either pass from these mortal bodies through physical death or are taken up with Jesus Christ.
This is also why I am passionate about women being free to minister and teach in the church. Our hearts and viewpoints are so needed by the Lord to balance out the men’s who tend to be more black and white. It’s outright foolishness to leave all the teaching and counsel solely to men who are incapable of seeing things the way a woman in Christ can.
There’s no doubt God made male AND female in His image each with a different kind of “heart perspective.”
Men incapable of having the heart perspective/mother heart of a woman. And women incapable of having the heart perspective/father heart of a man.
The Lord would NOT have us trivializing the suffering of others simply because the time is short before His return. We are called to demonstrate His love, mercy, and compassion to others as well as a testimony to His character and nature until the very end.
When the world sees us being cities on a hill for Him, it will win souls. Hardness of heart towards the suffering will not.
Knowing it is written, “And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and the violent take it by force,” (Matthew 11:12),
Knowing it is written, “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand…And take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God,” (Ephesians 6:12-13; 17).
…….Lord, when I go up with You, know I’ll be taking my last breath in this body fighting for You (from a place of Your rest of course) with the the sword of the Spirit which is the Word of God mixed with love and believing faith as my weapons of choice.
I promise You, I will not be trivializing the suffering of others. I am willing, Lord, to be an imperfect vessel, yet righteous IN You, who relieves the suffering of others in Your name that You are not only glorified, but so that people know You love them oh so much and care deeply about every little thing that concerns them.
Here I am…in Jesus’ name, amen.