All Is Well, There is Peace and Safety

(I Thessalonians 5)

Paul’s letter to the Thessalonians is one of the earliest of his writings. In this letter, Paul offers comfort in the midst of their persecution, by teaching concerning the return of Christ. The subject of the second coming of Christ permeates the letter, which brought encouragement for them all. Verse ten, we read, And look forward to and await the coming of His Son from heaven, Whom He raised from the dead- YAHSHUA, Who personally rescues and delivers us out of and from the wrath which is coming and draws us to Himself.  The coming wrath of God, long time been taught, is certain as is the deliverance of His people from it. The world today, has turned toward its destruction in an unprecedented way and so fast, everyone is in awe! Peace, is the cry. The more it cries for peace, the more chaos is created, as to shape the world into one order, under the power of a few, and ultimately, one leader. The world’s government’s sovereignty is now challenged, and pressured into doing what has been dictated. The news sounds the same everywhere.  The world, as it is today, dresses alike, eats the same foods, and now it is working on one religion system. Unity, as in one order of government, and one religion, applied to the entire world, is their way to bring about “peace” through one man, the antichrist. That’s what they think and are working hard toward that goal to make it happen on their watch. The Bible says, When people are saying, all is well and secure and, There is peace and safety, then in a moment unforeseen destruction will come upon them as suddenly as labor pains come upon a woman with child; and they shall by no means escape, for there will be no escape (vs.3). In the words of YAHSHUA, But take heed to yourselves and be on your guard, lest your hearts be overburdened  and depressed with the giddiness and headache and nausea of self-indulgence, drunkenness, and worldly worries and cares pertaining to this life and that day come upon you suddenly like a trap or a noose; for it will come upon all who live upon the face of the entire earth. Keep awake then and watch at all times, praying that you may have the full strength and ability and be accounted worthy to escape all these things that will take place, and to stand in the presence of the Son of Man (Luke 21:34-36).

Faith and Reason- Journey of the Soul

How does one reason God’s way, plan, and His fulfillment? We sinned; He gave us His Son to ransom us from its penalty with His life. While being nailed to the tree, YAHSHUA prayed a prayer of forgiveness for those who were nailing Him to the cross. How can one reason God’s love for us to the point of not only dying in our stead, but wanting us to live in heaven with Him? The soul, in its journey of reason, wonders clueless to the fact that there is no answer to these questions. Reasoning is good for us to understand the whys of the matter, but it takes faith to calm the heart and the mind, when there is no answer to the questions. Our rational conclusions do not always line up with faith, if we so depend on it for our understanding of things. The acceptance of Scripture without regard to reason and logic is a step of faith outside human’s interference.  Faith, true faith, that is, relies on confident expectation. Think, for example, Abraham, who had to wait for twenty-seven years before God fulfilled His promise to him of a son. Not only that, the fact that he and his wife were past the age of childbearing, opened the door to reasoning to step in, as he asked the Lord the question: “After I have become aged shall I have pleasure and delight, my lord, being old also? And shall a child be born to a man who is a hundred years old? And Sarah, who is ninety-nine years old, bear a son?” (Gen. 17:17b). But God is not limited by impossibilities; in fact, nothing is impossible to Him, as He confirmed it to Abraham with these words: Is anything too hard or too wonderful for the Lord? At the appointed time, when the season comes around, I will return to you and Sarah shall have borne a son (vs.14). Here we have God reasoning with Abraham, leading him to apply faith on that which seemed to him unreasonable.

Delivered From the Wrath To Come (Part 2)

Because you have guarded and kept My word of patient endurance, I will keep you from the hour of trial, which is coming on the whole world to try those who dwell upon the earth (Rev. 3:10) YAHSHUA’S words to the church of Philadelphia.    

God’s promise of deliverance for His faithful church has been established from the beginning under the condition, “Because you have guarded and kept My word of patient endurance.” Conditioned as in, “forgive and you shall be forgiven.” What does it mean? The phrase the word of my patience, “Refers not to individual commandments to patience, but to the entire gospel message. The general whole of the word of YAHSHUA the Messiah communicated to men. The whole gospel, then, is so named inasmuch as it all records the patience which Christ exercised; it means that nothing in sorrow, nothing in trial, nothing in temptation, no antagonism, has the smallest power to divert us from doing what’s right.” (Maclaren’s expositions) ‘The word of My patience’ means “the word of Christ which requires patience to keep it; the gospel which teaches the need of a patient waiting for Christ.” (Vincent’s word studies).

The conditions in which qualifies the believer to escape the wrath of God are summarized in these words: “guarded and kept My word of patient endurance.” The Word of God throughout teaches endurance and patience. Two difficult things to apply to our Christian living. Without patience there will be no endurance to keep going, as in waiting for the Lord. Many so- called Christians have lost the patient and endurance of faith, to follow their ways contrary to God’s word. They walk in darkness and embrace whatever they hear from TV. They lost the very essence of God’s promise and continue walking far from Him. They lost hope in the fact that the Lord is coming, because, like the unbelievers, they do not believe in the promise and have become scoffers of it. The Apostle Peter wrote, … You must know and understand this, that scoffers will come in the last days with scoffing, walk after their own fleshly desires and say, where is the promise of His coming? For since the forefathers fell asleep, all things have continued exactly as they did from the beginning of creation… nevertheless, do not let this one fact escape you, beloved, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years and a thousand years as one day (II Peter 3:3-4,8). Men forget that God is eternal and there is no limit of space of time for Him. He exists outside of the measure and frame of time, in an everlasting, forever in an infinite and unmeasurable time: a thousand years as a day, a day as a thousand years.

Delivered From the Wrath To Come (Part 1)

(I Thessalonians 1:10)

The consistency of God in saving His people before judgment, is remarkable and reliable. We see it in Noah’s days, when God saw the condition of the inhabitants on the earth, how degenerate, debased and vicious it was, for all humanity had corrupted their way upon the earth and lost their true direction (Gen. 6:12). He was grieved of heart for having created men. But He saw that Noah was a just and righteous man, blameless in his generation; Noah walked with God (Gen. 6:9). So, Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord (V. 8). God, in His mercy, always warns His servants before His judgment comes and, in those days, it was no different. He commanded Noah to build an ark for his salvation and that of his family, for God declared to him that He was going to bring judgment on the earth through a great flood, because of the wickedness of men. One hundred twenty years took for Noah to build the ark and warn the people.  Time sufficient enough for people to repent of their wicked ways. In the year 1656 God sent judgment on the earth, 726 years after Adam died. Noah was then 600 hundred years old. He was born 126 years after Adam died, which was in the year 1056.

The earth was relatively young when God’s judgment fell upon it, but it was absolutely ripe for judgment, due to wickedness abounding. We cannot fathom what was going on in those days; it is beyond our understanding, when we read the accounts of Genesis six. When Satan rebelled against God, one third of the angels rebelled with him. Satan’s purpose was and always is to steal, to kill and destroy men. He started in the Garden of Eden. When Adam and Eve followed him, he brought down the entire human race under his control. Therefore, we live in a cursed world under condemnation of sin, with the exception of those who have accepted YAHSHUA’S gift of salvation. One thing nonetheless, we can be sure: God did not destroy the righteous Noah with the wicked people of those days, neither will He do in the future. He spared Noah and his family for his righteousness.  So, God was consistent and just in His act of judgment yesterday, and He is today and He will always be. David prayed, Gather me not with sinners and sweep me not away [with them], nor my life with bloodthirsty men, in whose hands is wickedness, and their right hands are full of bribes, but as for me, I will walk in my integrity; redeem me and be merciful and gracious to me (Psalm 26:9-11).

Purposes of the Tribulation

The purposes for the great tribulation are clearly stated in the book of Daniel chapter nine: to finish transgression, to make an end of sin, to make atonement for iniquity, to bring in everlasting righteousness, to seal up vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most holy place (vv. 24). Summarizing all, it is to make an end of wickedness and wicked ones.  When YAHSHUA came in the period of the sixty-ninth weeks of the seventy weeks of years given to the Jewish nation, He took upon Himself the penalty of our sin and iniquity, He suffered the pain of the tribulation and of hell, so to deliver those who would accept Him. Those who believe in Him go through the process of regeneration, and sanctification and ultimately glorification through the new birth.  As He told Nicodemus, “I assure you, most solemnly I tell you that unless a person is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God; unless a man is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. What is born of flesh is flesh; and what is born of the Spirit is spirit. God so greatly loved the world that He gave up His only begotten (unique) Son, so that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life; for God did not send the Son into the world in order to judge the world, but that the world might find salvation and be made safe and sound through Him. He who believes in Him is not judged; but he who does not believe in Him is judged already, because he has not believed in and trusted in the name of the only begotten Son of God; The [basis of the] judgment lies in this: The Light has come into the world, and people have loved the darkness rather than and more than the Light, for their works were evil” (John 3:16-19).

The Walls of Jericho

(Joshua 6: I-21)

Walls are a means of protection, and privacy. In the early days they served well in big cities as Jericho, to mark boundaries, as we read here in the first verse of Joshua chapter one. Now Jericho was tightly closed because of the Israelites; no one went out or came in. They sought protection behind their walls, as usually they did, but this time, there would be no wall that would withstand the power of the Almighty God behind Israel’s strength!  Israel’s reputation had reached their ears concerning the places and kings Israel had destroyed. According to Rahab, the people were trembling with fear of them. She said, I know that the Lord has given you the land and that your terror is fallen upon us and that all the inhabitants of the land faint because of you, for we have heard how the Lord dried up the water of the Red Sea for you when you came out of Egypt, and what you did to the two kings of the Amorites who were on the side of the Jordan, Sihon and Og, whom you utterly destroyed. When we heard it, our hearts melted, neither did spirit or courage remain any more in any man because of you, for the Lord your God, He is God in heaven above and on earth beneath (Joshua 1:9-11).

After days of marching around the city, as God commanded Israel to do, the walls of Jericho came down and Israel conquered the city. They were to march around the enclosure, all the men of war going around the city once, for six days, seven priests were to bear before the ark seven trumpets of rams’ horn and on the seventh day they were to march around the enclosure seven times, and the priests were to blow the trumpets, when at the long blast of the trumpets, the people were to shout with a great shout and the wall would fall down (vs. 3-5). The battle to conquer Jericho belonged to the Prince of the Lord’s host. But Israel had to fight against it physically. The victory was certain and powerful. The people had no chance to fight Israel and so, no one escaped besides Rahab and her family, as it was promised her. Conquered in 1599 years B.C., Jericho was visited by the Lord YAHSHUA many years later, this time not as the Prince of the Lord’s host, but as a Savior, bringing salvation to a short Jewish man, called Zacchaeus and his family. YAHSHUA proclaimed, Today, salvation came to this household, since Zacchaeus too is a son of Abraham; for the Son of Man came to seek and to save that which was lost (Luke 19:1-10). Zacchaeus’ wall came down when he admitted his sinful condition to the Lord. Salvation came to him and to his family as a result.