We are in a period of transition. We are moving from one day to another. There are many ways to view the word “day.” Paul says that we are “children of the day” (I Thessalonians 5:5). Therefore, we understand that we are children of the “Day,” meaning we are children of the Lord Jesus Christ. He is our Day. And as we move from one relationship with Him to a higher relationship with Him, we are moving from one day to another.
When we are in this transition period, moving into a closer relationship with the Lord, our worship and focus on the Lord should become more intense. We have to learn how to walk with the Lord anew upon entering a new relationship with Him.
We are entering the morning of a new day. That is not true for everyone, but those who are hungering after the Lord are finding themselves moving into new things. It is as the Lord promised: Behold, I will do a new thing; now it shall spring forth; shall you not know it? (Isaiah 43:19).
We are entering a time of tremendous revelation. The Lord is bringing us to the “day of the open book.” He told Daniel to seal the book until the time of the end. O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end… Daniel 12:4. Then in Revelation chapter five we see the Lamb taking the book to open it (Revelation 5:1-7). The Lord Jesus spoke of these days when He told His disciples that the Holy Spirit would lead us into all truth. I have yet many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. Howbeit when He, the Spirit of truth, is come, He will guide you into all truth: for He shall not speak of Himself; but whatsoever He shall hear, that shall He speak: and He will show you things to come. He shall glorify Me: for He shall receive of Mine, and shall show it unto you. John 16:12-14. The Lord has much to tell us, much to reveal to us, but it was necessary for us to grow to our end-time, the days of adulthood. Progressively we grow, and progressively revelation increases. It is precept upon precept, line upon line, here a little and there a little (Isaiah 28:13). As we mature, He reveals more to us.
We also find that in this day change is taking place more rapidly. The rate of process is increasing, but it was prophesied that this would happen. In the Book of Revelation it is said that God would judge Babylon and bring it down in one hour (18:19). Isaiah prophesied that a nation would be born at once (66:8). Paul told the church at Rome that God would do a quick work. For He will finish the work, and cut it short in righteousness: because a short work will the Lord make upon the earth. Romans 9:28. In the Psalms it is said that His sons shall be like plants grown up in their youth (144:12). Then in the second chapter of John, Jesus turned the water into wine, eliminating the natural process of making wine. He didn’t plant the little vine slips, wait for them to grow and bear grapes, and then go through all the process of making wine. He just turned the water into wine. There are many such scriptures indicating that we are coming to a time when the process of bringing forth sons is stepped up. Of course, that is for those who are willing to move into greater things of the Lord. Everyone, though, is not willing. Many Christians are satisfied where they are and are not interested in going any further.
It seems that God always works with a remnant. In the days of the flood, eight people – Noah, his wife, his three sons and their wives – entered the ark, crossed the troubled waters, and entered a new day (Genesis 7:7). Then the Lord told them to be fruitful and multiply and replenish the earth (Genesis 9:1). Gideon’s army of 300 is another example. There were about 32,000 fighting men and all that didn’t want to be involved were allowed to go home, which left about 10,000. Then after a test there were only 300 left. And they were the ones the Lord used (Judges 7:7). All the way through the Bible, it is just a remnant.
You might wonder why the Lord Jesus didn’t have many more disciples during His ministry recorded in the Gospels. He did have a lot of disciples after He fed the 5,000 (John 6:5-14). The next day Jesus told that same multitude that unless they ate His flesh and drank His blood they would have no life in them (John 6:53). That was too much for them; they couldn’t accept that and began walking away. Does it seem strange to you that He didn’t try to stop them? He didn’t say, “Hey, wait a minute! Let Me explain to you what I mean by that statement.” Instead, He looked at His disciples and said, “Will you also go away?” (John 6:67). Then Simon Peter answered Him, Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal Life. And we believe and are sure that You are the Christ, the Son of the living God. John 6:68-69. They probably didn’t understand His sayings anymore than the crowd who walked away, but they weren’t leaving. There are many times that we don’t understand what the Lord is saying, either. That is why we need a revelation of the Lord and this walk with God.
God is always speaking. Psalm 19:1-4 and Romans 10:13-18 talk about the Voice that is gone out into the world. It is up to us to hear what the Lord is speaking. Sometimes you feel you need the Lord to speak to you. The problem is not getting Him to speak. The problem is hearing what He is saying. He is speaking! We need to learn how to hear!
The Lord is looking for a people that want Him above everything else. Thus the Lord says, You shall seek Me, and find Me, when you shall search for Me with all your heart. Jeremiah 29:13. There are many places in the Scriptures where the Lord lets us know that He wants us to be wholehearted in our relationship with Him. Christianity as a whole, though, is not wholehearted toward the Lord. It is like lukewarm Laodicea; a very dangerous state to be in. It is better to be cold than lukewarm. If you’re cold the Lord can deal with you and get some kind of reaction. But when a person is indifferent it is hard to get him to respond to anything. When asked about the first commandment, Jesus said, You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength (Mark 12:30). That is the way He wants us to be.
James 4:8 gives us a very important principle that really works. Draw near to God, and He will draw near to you. If you want more of God in your life, then that is how it happens. Put forth the effort! Take the initiative to move closer to Him, and He will move closer to you. If you could put units of measure on your progress toward Him and you moved ten units, then He would move ten units toward you. You are getting a double portion for your efforts. We determine how God responds to us. If we forgive others, He forgives us. If we give, then He gives. If we draw near to Him, then He draws near to us. But if we are lukewarm and indifferent, then He will seem to be the same way. In a very real sense we determine our spiritual state. The worst sin a Christian can commit is the sin of passivity, just don’t do anything. Be satisfied where you are and make no effort to move any closer to the Lord.
The lukewarm and indifferent Christians are in days of deception, but the ones hungering after the Lord are in days of revelation. The Lord is responding to those who are taking the initiative to draw nigh to Him. They are receiving revelations from the Lord, because they are seeking first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness (Matthew 6:33).
Matthew 24:11 And many false prophets will rise, and will deceive many.
The idea of false prophets scares some people, but there is a positive side. There can only be false prophets when there are also true ones. There can be no false without the true.
False prophets will deceive many. How do people generally interpret that statement? Do they think that it will be non-Christians that are deceived? Jesus is the one making that statement, so we know it to be true. The next verse interprets it for us.
Matthew 24:12 And because iniquity shall abound…
The Greek word for “iniquity” means “lawlessness.” That doesn’t mean that a person refuses to keep the Law of Moses. To be lawless means to be your own boss, doing your own thing. A lawless Christian is one that is not being led by the Holy Spirit. He directs his own life according to his own wisdom. A lawless Christian is one that is satisfied and is not progressing spiritually in the Lord.
Matthew 24:12 And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall grow cold.
The Greek word for “love” here is agape. “Agape-love” is divine love; it is God’s love. So the verse is saying, “The agape of many shall grow cold.” Who has the agape-love? The only ones that can have agape-love are Christians. Lawlessness will abound because the love of many Christians will grow cold, and for that reason false prophets will deceive many of them. It should also be noticed that in the Greek it reads: the love of the many shall grow cold. The King James translation omits the definite article “the,” but it is in the Greek text. This means that “the many,” or the majority of Christianity, will be deceived by false prophets. The remnant, or “the few,” are experiencing days of revelation. “The many” are experiencing days of deception.
I Timothy 4:1 Now the Spirit speaks expressly, that in the latter times (Paul is speaking of these days) some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils.
A person can’t depart from the faith if he was not in it. Paul is not talking about non-Christians being deceived and departing from the faith. They haven’t been in the faith. He is talking about Christians that have made some advancement in the faith and now they are departing from it. Christians are giving heed to seducing spirits and are being drawn away. There is a high degree of deception involved in this; they don’t realize they are departing from the faith. Listen! The moment you stop growing in the Lord, no longer making spiritual progress, at that moment deception begins creeping in. Seducing spirits are spirits that draw you away from the Lordship of Jesus Christ. It doesn’t try to get you to stop being a Christian or to openly reject Christ. It draws you into a state of complacency so that you are not growing spiritually. It will lead you into religious works that will not bring change to your life.
II Timothy 3:1 This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.
The “last days” do not only refer to the last days of history. It also speaks of the “last days” of your spiritual growth; that is, the days of your maturity. For example, a child, or a babe in Christ, is in his beginning days. Next are the middle years, and then there are the mature years of adulthood, which can be termed “last days.” Viewing it in this light, “last days” represent the maturity or the adulthood of the believer. Now Paul says that perilous times will come in our last days. So does that mean as we grow spiritually there is a greater danger? Yes, it does. As long as you are an immature Christian, Satan doesn’t bother you very much because you are not a threat to him. But when you are becoming spiritually mature and are learning to minister the judgments of the Lord, you will surely get his attention, for then you are a threat to him. So the perilous times of spiritual warfare are at hand.
II Timothy 3:2-4 For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous,
boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,
3 Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good,
4 Traitors, heady, high-minded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God.
You say, “Oh, those are some wicked things!” Yes, they are wicked. And they are all in human nature. They are the works of your flesh nature. You say, “Oh, I wouldn’t do any of those things!” They are in you, whether you think you would do them or not. They are inherent in human nature. So when the seducing spirits come along, what do they do? They use what is already in your flesh nature to draw you away from the Lordship of Jesus Christ. Do you see how important the work of the cross is in your life? Everything the devil needs to destroy you is in your flesh nature, until the work of the cross brings a death to those things.
II Timothy 3:4 …lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God.
That nails the majority of Christianity right there.
II Timothy 3:5 Having a form of godliness…
Non-Christians don’t have a form of godliness. That refers to church people.
II Timothy 3:5 Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.
How do you deny the power? The power and authority of God is able to bring change in your life. You don’t have to say, “Well, I don’t deny it.” All you have to do is nothing and you are denying the power.
Seducing spirits are very active today. Christians that want to grow spiritually are the ones they want to seduce and draw away from the Lordship of Jesus Christ. Satan is not concerned about Christians that are not progressing spiritually. They are already deceived. To those that would become mature in Christ, Paul gives the following exhortation: Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Wherefore take unto you the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; and your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith you shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God. Ephesians 6:10-17.
Copyright © 2001 by Henry DuBose