Matthew 24:12 And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.
This verse of Scripture is most definitely speaking of Christians. The Greek word for “iniquity” is anomia and is more correctly translated “lawlessness.” A lawless Christian is one who is not subject to the Lordship of Jesus Christ as he should be. He has accepted Jesus as Savior and calls Him Lord, but directs his life primarily according to the dictates of his own heart and mind.
The Greek word for “love” is agape, which is a word for God’s love, and, of course, the love that Christians should have for one another. When the Bible says, “God is love” (I John 4:16), it uses the Greek word agape.
Because the King James Version says that the love “of many” shall wax cold, it is often applied to non-Christians. It is true that people of the world are becoming more lawless, the crime rate is very high. But they are not the ones Jesus is speaking of here. They have never had the love of God. The agape love can not grow cold in a people who have never experienced it. It is not the “love of many,” in general that waxes cold. The King James Version has omitted a word from the original. The Greek reads “the many”; “the love of THE MANY shall wax cold.” “The many” are Christians and refers to a large portion of Christianity. The majority of Christians today are very self-centered and lawless. They do their own thing and think nothing of it.
Matthew 24:37-39 But as the days of Noe (Noah) were, so shall also the
coming of the Son of man be.
38 For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark,
39 And knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.
The people of Noah’s day refused to heed the warning. Noah preached; they didn’t listen. So it is today; “the many” are not heeding the warning. The Son of man is coming, and the Christians-world is drunk on religiosity. They are not aware of the visitation of the Lord. Also, the word “coming” in verse 37 and 39 is parousia. The parousia speaks of a spiritual coming. It is what Paul spoke of in his epistle to the Thessalonians. When He shall come to be glorified in His saints, and to be admired in all them that believe. II Thessalonians 1:10. The Lord Jesus Christ is coming forth in a remnant, but “the many” will be like the people in Noah’s day, unable to discern the day of visitation.
Matthew 24:42 Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come.
We are in the day when the Lord is requiring submission to His Lordship. It seems that Christians have gotten away with being lawless and self-centered for a long time now, but that is changing. And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent: because He hath appointed a day, in the which He will judge the world in righteousness by that Man whom He hath ordained. Acts 17:30-31. This is the hour that “your Lord doth come”; that is, the time when submission to His Lordship is demanded.
Matthew 24:48-51 But and if that evil servant shall say in his heart, My
Lord delayeth His coming;
49 And shall begin to smite his fellowservants, and to eat and drink with the drunken;
50 The Lord of that servant shall come in a day when he looketh not for Him, and in an hour that he is not aware of,
51 And shall cut him asunder, and appoint him his portion with the hypocrites: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
The “evil servant” is a Christian ministry. This is brought out in the fact that Jesus calls him a servant. But he is an evil servant because he is lawless, not as subject to the Lordship of Jesus Christ as he should be. His fellow servants are those under his charge. The evil servant represents many of today’s pulpit ministries. He is one of the leaders of “the many,” one of the “blind guides” (Matthew 23:16)
How does the evil servant delay the coming of the Lord? When He is ready to come He will come, won’t He? Can anyone hinder His coming? The evil servant delays the coming of the Lord by the way he ministers to his fellow servants. He always places it in the future. There is a coming of the Lord that is taking place right now (II Thessalonians 1:10). We are in the days of the parousia. But “the many” are not aware of it, or experiencing it, because their ministers are delaying the coming of the Lord by placing it in the future. The hope of the glory is Christ in you (Colossians 1:27)
The evil servant that delays the Lord’s coming is like the Pharisees Jesus spoke of in the previous chapter. But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For ye shut up the Kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in. Matthew 23:13. The way they would shut up the Kingdom of heaven against men was by always ministering the Word of God historically or futuristically. Are there any ministers today doing that? Do they divide the Scriptures saying that some were only for the Israelites of the Old Testament, and some for a future millennium? Yes, the blind guides of “the many” minister in that way. They don’t leave much to experience now. “No prophets today, no miracles; you’ll experience the promises and receive your rewards after you get to heaven,” they say. They are evil servants. What makes them so effective and deadly is that they are Christians, and they really believe what they are ministering.
Those kinds of ministers are always “smiting their fellow servants.” How do they do that? They minister condemnation; they hold them over hell. Their sermons are usually negative with a lot of rules and regulations of what you can and can’t do. They keep the people in bondage, not letting them experience the presence of the Lord. I visited a church recently, and at the end of the sermon the pastor began his altar call. It was a small church of about 25 or 30 people. Anyway, he began playing on their emotions and ministering condemnation. “Do you really know you are saved?” he said. Then, “I don’t know if you are saved or not; you may be on the road to a devil’s hell.” He was an evil servant. A real shepherd knows his sheep (John 10:2-14). It is the pastor’s responsibility to know those under his charge. If he doesn’t know them spiritually, what their needs are, or even whether they are Christians or not, he is spiritually blind and incapable of caring for the sheep.
They smite their fellow servants, and eat and drink with the drunken. The Bible tells us that those who are sober are open to the spiritual realm and the presence of the Lord. They are the children of the day. On the other hand, those who are numb to the spiritual realm of God are drunken, and are the children of the night (I Thessalonians 5:1-10). “The many” are more worldly than they are spiritual because they are drunk on religiosity.
Matthew 7:13-14 Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate,
and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be(literally,
“many are the ones”; that is, “the many”) which go in thereat:
14 Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.
Christianity is made up of “the many” and “the few.” “The many” have entered the broad gate to the broad way of religion. “The few” are finding the narrow way that leads to fullness of life in God.
Let’s go back to our first text and the verse preceding it. And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many. And because iniquity (lawlessness) shall abound, the love of many (literally, “the many”) shall wax cold. Matthew 24:11-12. Who are the many that are deceived? They are the majority of the Christian-world. Satan is not trying to deceive non-Christians; they are not a threat to the satanic realm. It is Christians that the devil wants to destroy, and many are already deceived. Much of Christianity are already captive to Mystery Babylon. That is why the Lord is saying, “Come out of her (Babylon), My people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues” (Revelation 18:4). “The many” are in bondage to Babylon, but they don’t have to stay there. The Word is going forth, “Come out of her, My people.”
If you are in a denominational church, you are among “the many.” The same walls that close them in to a man-made religious organization also walls out the Lord. But just coming out of a denomination is not enough. Many non-denominational churches are no different; the same religious spirit prevails. We not only need to come out of Babylon, but we also need to get Babylon out of us. The Israelites were delivered out of Egypt, but “the many” of them died in the wilderness, because they carried Egypt in their hearts. They were God’s people, but because they were contaminated with the spirit of Egypt He could not bring them into the land of promise.
I Corinthians 10:1-6 Moreover, brethren, I would not that ye should be
ignorant, how that all our fathers were under the cloud, and all passed through
2 And were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea;
3 And did eat the same spiritual meat;
4 And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ.
5 But with many (literally, “the many”) of them God was not well pleased: for they were overthrown in the wilderness.
6 Now these things were our examples, to the intent we should not lust after evil things, as they also lusted.
The word “all” appears five times for emphasis. …ALL our fathers…ALL passed through the sea…ALL were baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea…ALL did eat the same spiritual meat…ALL did drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock…that Rock was Christ. They were ALL God’s people and ALL of them partook of Christ, but ALL did not go into the land of promise. Verse 5 says that “many” of them were overthrown in the wilderness. Again, the King James Version leaves out the article “the.” It should read, “But with THE MANY of them God was not well pleased: for they were overthrown in the wilderness.” Then in verse 6 the Bible says that these things were examples for us. Why? because the same thing is happening now among God’s people. Many of God’s people will not be able to enter the Kingdom of God, because they have not totally submitted to the Lordship of Jesus Christ. Strive to enter in at the strait gate: for many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able. When once the Master of the house is risen up, and hath shut to the door, and ye begin to stand without, and to knock at the door, saying, Lord, Lord, open unto us; and He will answer and say unto you, I know you not whence ye are: then shall ye begin to say, We have eaten and drunk in Thy presence, and Thou hast taught in our streets. But He shall say, I tell you, I know you not whence ye are; depart from Me, all ye workers of iniquity (lawlessness). There shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth, when ye shall see Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, and all the prophets, in the Kingdom of God, and you yourselves thrust out. And they shall come from the east, and from the west, and from the north, and from the south, and shall sit down in the Kingdom of God. And, behold, there are last which shall be first, and there are first which shall be last. Luke 13:24-30.
Copyright © 1997 by Henry DuBose