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And because iniquity shall abound…


And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold. Matthew 24:12

Forgive me for sounding off somewhat in this post, but I’ve thought about this all day. Has there ever been a time when the love of so many Christians has grown so obviously cold toward others?

How can Christians speak out of one side of their mouths, proclaiming their love and devotion for Christ Jesus, yet, out of the other side of the same mouth speak so coldly and without love or concern for others?

Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not so to be. Doth a fountain send forth at the same place sweet water and bitter? James 3:10-11

Earlier today while browsing around at my usual Christian news sites, boards, and blogs, I saw this news story posted: US promises Palestinian refugees more aid.

Quote:

The United States will provide additional aid to Palestinian refugees, including those living in the Hamas-run Gaza Strip, a senior diplomat said on Tuesday.

In January, the US government contributed 40 million dollars to the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine refugees (UNRWA), and Sam Witten, assistant secretary of state in charge of refugees, said more would be forthcoming.

“We will be making additional substantial contributions in the near future,” he told reporters during a visit to an UNRWA-built girls’ primary school and clinic in the Jalazon refugee camp near the West Bank city of Ramallah.

Much of that support will go to the more than one million refugees living in the Gaza Strip, which has been under crippling economic sanctions since the Islamist Hamas movement seized power there in June.

“The United States is not abandoning the people of Gaza and our additional contribution will be of assistance to them,” Witten said, adding that Washington is the largest bilateral donor to UNRWA…

Forget the Politics of this story, just look at it through the eyes of one who is a Christian and seeks to obey the scriptures.

The comments I saw posted by Christians today in response to this news story shocked me. The lack of caring about others was staggering. Why were Christians who ‘swear their allegance’ to Christ, and proclaim their undying ‘love’ for Him so outraged? Because the people in need are Palestinian.

As one of the milder commenters wrote:

“..while im all about helping others im not so sure about sending aid to them, the ‘pally’s’…”

Forget the fact that there are Palestinian Christians, brothers and sisters in Christ who are there: there is also at least one Christian org. from outside the area which moved in to offer help as well and is suffering along side these people and families, but what about the people period?

Jesus said:

Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy. But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust. For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same? And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more than others? do not even the publicans so? Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.? Matthew 5: 43-48

Master, which is the great commandment in the law? Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets. Matthew 22:36-40

Today I found myself deeply discouraged at the responses I read…the mocking, laughter, anger, and coldness. I also felt shame as a Christian, at the thought of a young believer reading those comments left by older Christians, and, at the very real possibility that someone lost would read these also, believing this attitude was what Christianity was about. Our love for Christ is shown here on this earth in many ways, one being how we treat others by our actions and attitudes: both our brethren and the lost.

And when his disciples James and John saw this, they said, Lord, wilt thou that we command fire to come down from heaven, and consume them, even as Elias did? But he turned, and rebuked them, and said, Ye know not what manner of spirit ye are of. For the Son of man is not come to destroy men’s lives, but to save them..Luke 9: 55-56

Father forgive me if I have grown cold in my love toward others, because if I have, then my love for you has grown cold also. Help me to see others as you do, especially those who are lost, hurting, or in need. Show me how to be your hands. amen

4 comments on “And because iniquity shall abound…

  1. PJ . . . I understand what you are saying. It ‘s such a grief. My eyes were opened to this type of thing during the 2006 Israel/Lebanon war when I watched news that was not mainstream. It was like I woke up. I was horrified by the death and destruction that I saw, especially the dead children. It was then that I began to have similar sentiments as you express in this post.

    I received a prayer request sent out by a Christian ministry in Israel. They were asking for prayer that the Israeli Defense Force would be successful in their bombing of Lebanon’s infrastructures. I thought to myself “there’s something wrong with this picture.”

    Why is there such a lack of mercy and compassion for human beings? pj, i see a hardness in Christians that scares me. I don’t understand.

    Cathy

  2. I thought to myself “there’s something wrong with this picture.”

    Yes, something seriously wrong when a Christian or Christian org promotes the death of any people[s], in any circumstance.

    Just my opinion, but i believe its why we as Christians should stay out of jumping on a ‘side’ in the cases of the wars in the middle east….thats not our job. We’re to pray for, help [when possible] and give the Gospel to ALL people. Thats our “job”, and should be our hearts desire.

    When i read all the hateful comments yesterday, i have to say it was very disheartening.

    Forgive me Lord, but my first reaction was, “who are these people, for they surely cannot be people who follow the teachings of Jesus”

    I’m ashamed to say that, but its the truth.

  3. I thought of your last comment Cathy, when reading this tonight:

    An age where love grows cold

    “Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold” – Matt. 24:12 (NIV)

    Words translated as “love,” or “lover,” in the New Testament, can be one of several words, depending on the biblical passage in which the word appears.

    In Matthew 24, Jesus answers a question that has been on the minds of his followers since the first century A.D. “What will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?” his disciples ask him, in Matt. 24:3 (NIV).

    Jesus says one of the signs of his soon return will be that the love of many will become cold. This Greek word for love in this passage is “agape.”

    Agape is the believer’s active love for God, each other and even our enemies. This love comes from God and is not “natural.” It’s a spiritually given love from God to us.

    In 2 Tim. 3, Paul discusses the last days, too.

    “But know this, that in the last days grievous times shall come. Men shall be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, haughty, railers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, without natural affection….” 2 Tim. 3:1-3a (ASV)

    He says those days will be marked by grievous times, and people will be lovers of themselves. (v. 1,2) The word, lover, in Greek, is “philautos,” which literally means loving oneself to the point of selfishness.

    In v. 3, Paul says people will be without love — “astorgos” in the Greek. This is the same word used in Rom. 1:31 to describe a state of being heartless.

    What Jesus told us in Matt. 24 is that, as the end of the world approaches, people would turn away from God’s love.

    Most of us who are Christians, use our blogs to post many items and articles about the apostasy or falling away in the Church today in America. What God showed me tonight Cathy, is we shouldn’t be taken by surprise to see further evidence of this falling away, then just false doctrines: That lack of love and hard-heartedness (or love waxing cold) is also a sign of the Last Day Laodicean Church.

    The rise of false teachers and prophets has been and is a catalyst to the coldness among many Christians today. Simply feeding at the feet of false teachers will certainly bring about coldness to the love of Christ Jesus in many Christians.

    So, this is a warning that we awake and use scripture to discern what is right from what is wrong so that our faith and spiritual eyes will stay focused on Jesus Christ and not man. Those who continue to feed at the feet of false teachers and prophets risk having their love for Christ grow cold.

    The Bible clearly speaks of a time when the love of many will grow cold. This coldness is in context with the rise of false prophets who come to deceive many. Always deception will be accompanied by a coldness and lukewarmness of a Christian.

    So, it is imperative that Christians today take discernment based on God’s Word very seriously as not doing so will certainly cause one to feed on leavened bread and adulterated word which in turn will cause you to set your spiritual affection after things of this world – idols of this day and age. (*we see this today Cathy…Christians who’s theology has led them into making an idol out of flesh and blood people, and plots of ground in the middle east)

    Iniquity shall abound…

    The Bible identifies the period of time in which iniquity shall abound thus the love of many growing cold. We live in a time when evil abounds… The Lord Jesus Christ was referring to the end time saints and giving us a warning that when we see the rise of false prophets and the abounding of iniquity, then we are to take heed that we don’t get caught up in false doctrines from false prophets and thus participation in the abounding iniquity, leading to a coldness of heart and lack of love for Christ but instead an increase in the love of the world.

    If You Love Me, Keep My Commandments…
    However, knowing Truth alone is not enough, we must act on that Truth we know; we must be doers of God’s Holy Word.

    Brethren, The Lord Jesus Christ is very clear that if we truly love Him, then we shall keep His sayings, we shall keep His Word, and we shall keep His commandments. You cannot separate your love for Christ from obeying and Keeping His commandments.

    Don’t be deceived by Christians who claim that they Love The Lord yet don’t keep His sayings… Brethren, such Christians don’t love The Lord enough to keep His sayings. They simply like The Lord but Don’t Love Him! As a matter of fact The Lord Jesus Christ says that those who keep not His Commandments are NOT His! Brethren, if we truly belong to The Lord Jesus Christ, then lets keep His sayings and Doctrine.

    The Greatest Commandment…
    Matthew 22:35-40
    (35) Then one of them, which was a lawyer, asked him a question, tempting him, and saying,
    (36) Master, which is the great commandment in the law?
    (37) Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.
    (38) This is the first and great commandment.
    (39) And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.
    (40) On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.

    The Greatest commandment that Jesus Christ spoke about in this verse above talks about our Total Love for Jesus Christ and then love for our neighbor. It is interesting to note that we don’t love our neighbor with our own fleshy love that is so limited and selfish.

    However, when we love The Lord with all our total love then being filled with The Love of Christ we can truly love our neighbor. The Love spoken about here involves our obedience to Christ and our keeping of His Commandments, for those who love Jesus Christ keep His sayings and obey His commandments.

    This is the Love that the Devil hates and wants to destroy in our lives by enticing us with the Love of this world. Brethren, we are to watch against this and make sure that we are not being enticed from obeying The Lord’s Commands.

    Thou Has Left thy First Love…Repent!!!
    Revelation 2:4-5
    (4) Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love.
    (5) Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy candlestick out of his place, except thou repent.

    link

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