Will we stand?

If you follow this blog, you’ll know that I’ve been warning that there are times coming that are going to be out of our comfort zone. So, I ask, when it comes down to the wire, will we stand? Will we take up our cross and walk in the footsteps of Jesus Christ? Or will we slink away into the darkness, unwilling to pay the price for following the Prince of Peace?

What is the Church doing to prepare people to stand in the times to come? Rather little it seems, as I cast my eye around the Internet and in the real world. False words of comfort are being given, rather than true words of hope. There are lights shining in the darkness, but so often they appear an exception to the rule.

I seem to find myself observing two worlds within the Church, both of which preach the false words of comfort. With one of my hats on, I view the prophetic sources on the web. Predominantly, they seem to be skewed towards the pre-tribulationist eschatological viewpoint. Now, I’m no expert on these things, however I do observe the convenience of a theory that allows us to live in comfort now, and be whisked away at the first hint of trouble. Is this what the Bible really says? I am mindful of John 16 v33:

“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

We, as Christians, are overcomers – not escapers. So often it seems that God will transform a situation rather than remove us from it. Was pre-tribulationism not the same theory that worked ultimately to weaken faith in China ahead of the persecution in the Boxer rebellion? In what is our trust? Sometimes in these prophetic circles it appears that there is more trust in the comfort of the rapture, rather than in the hope of Jesus Christ.

I don’t want to argue eschatological theories – but I will debate the fruit, and the fruit of pre-tribulationism appears to be words of comfort that sit well with our ears.

Then we come to my other world, that of the inclusive church. The church that has abolished sin, and hence the need for a saviour. A faith where Jesus is just a way, a metaphor and an example – and no more true than another way. The church that confirms us ‘just as we are’ – and leaves us that way.

It seems that so many cannot be bothered to live for this gutted faith, therefore can we imagine that any would die for it – a relativistic faith where all truths are held to be equal?

What do we have here but false shepherds doing their best to undermine foundations, leaving behind them a creaking shed, so that when the waves come in and the wind blows the whole rotten edifice will crash down.

I will submit to you that though the world is different, the fruit is the same – words of comfort that itching ears long to hear. Come to us, and have your sins blessed!

Do I make you despondent? Ah then, let me give you the good news.

The Gates of Hell will never prevail against the Church! God is not mocked. Even now, there are those who are called.

Called to stand.

Called to be lighthouses, called to be lifeboats, called to provide safe harbour, and guide people to refuge.

Called to those who will otherwise be wrecked on the rocks, or founder on the storms of the sea of relativity. Those who have no anchor and see no need of one.

He still cares for us. Do we care for Him? Will we stand? If there is one thing I will say, and say again and again in the hope that even one person will hear, it is this: to stand, stand on the Rock of Ages, the only place that will prove firm footing in the times to come. He is calling you, calling me, not to look to the things of the world but to stand in Him and to be found only, only in Him, the source of life and light itself.

May Christ in our hearts be like the light of Eärendil – a light for us in dark places, when all other lights go out.

This then the cry. Prepare! Stand! May you live and move in the light of the Rock of Ages.

Cross Light

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11 Responses to Will we stand?

  1. white rabbit says:

    Well said Peter. As a group Christians will neither stand for the faith nor slink away into the darkness. We will imitate the Cheshire Cat and declare words are to mean what we want them to mean and for as long as we wish it. Like the Laodiceans we will be neither hot nor cold and Jesus will spew us out of his mouth (into the lake of fire)? come judgment day.
    Pre tribulation has indeed cut the balls off Christian men but how anyone can believe he will be raptured to the clouds and avoid everything that Christians, including Jesus Christ himself had to endure is beyond me.

  2. padraic says:

    For myself,having grown in a major pre-tribulation inclined Christian circle,I’ve come to a different view of how Christians will have to come to grips with things.
    1 Cor.1:4-9(especially verses 8-9)and 1 Peter 4:17-19 ring especially true to me of late.
    My own view is to reaffirm that which we know is true.
    In looking at 1 Cor.1:4-8 that means:
    gratefulfulness for ‘what the gift of His grace’ has come to mean to me,
    how it’s enriched my whole life from the words on my lips to the understanding in my heart,that He’s given gifts of grace to be gratefully and well used to build up His Body and to give the Gospel of grace tangible reality which impacts unbeliever’s lives right up till we see His return.
    The second aspect of that is that believers are secure in Him in spite of whatever marginalization and opposition may come from cultural and societal powers.
    ‘He will keep you stedfast in the faith to the end,’ continues to resonnate because ‘God is faithful’ and ‘it is He who has called you into fellowship with His Son,Jesus Christ,our Lord.’
    In 1 Peter 4:17-18,it seems to me and I’m no great scholar,that the church won’t and hasn’t missed out yet on glimpses in experience of what yet to be completely experienced and seen when goats and sheep are separated,so what do we do in the meantime and ‘if it is true that we are living in a time of judgment’?
    ‘commit their souls to their faithful creator,and go on doing all the good they can’

  3. faithwalk says:

    Excellent post Peter , opening with some important questions, that we all need to ask.

    Pre Trib doctrine? I see no basis for this in scripture, but rather the opposite. Woe to those who say peace and safety when sudden destruction is coming upon them. So often we take one or two verses and build something around it, completely ignoring those that refute it which in this case , the scriptures that refer to Christians going through the worst tribulation ever far outnumber any used to support pre trib rapture.

    Thank you for continuing to speak out, I pray that many will listen and be ready come what may in the hope and grace of our Lord Jesus Christ!

    I owe you an email… will send it soon!

    Blessings to you Peter!

    Susan

  4. Peter says:

    white rabbit – Heh, yes!

    Padraic – I wasn’t trying to totally diss pretrib (wasn’t sure if you hold that view or not?) (though, on balance from what I know I don’t think it’s correct) – but to address the fruit, which often seems to be a hollow comfort where the rapture trumps Christ.

    But, as you say”He will keep you strong to the end, so that you will be blameless on the day of our Lord Jesus Christ” -Amen – lets hang onto that!

    Susan – Glad it blessed you! I guess I am a pre/a/post millenium agnostic to some degree, but pretrib dispensationalism, from what I have read, does not seem true. Though like I said my main concern in all this is the fruit. Does it build up? IMHO pretrib builds a veil of delusion and weakens our ability to stand.

    Look forward to that email 🙂

    Blessings,

    Peter

  5. padraic says:

    That’s ok Pete,I have plenty of reservations about premillenial teaching myself,for much the same reasons,besides I had a ‘rapture scare’ at a retreat during a tornado when I was a young-un after having read Late Great Planet Earth in its heyday.
    Everybody else at the retreat was evacuated while I was sleeping in my cabin,was kind of spooky to see hot coffee on tables and lit cigarettes.
    I started on the road to quit believing the rapture when everybody showed back up and I missed out on the brand new 280Z Nissan.

  6. timbob says:

    Greetings Peter. This is one of the most important posts that I’ve read in a long time. Here’s a bit of my story. When I lived in Virginia, I was in the pre-tribulation camp. The idea of being killed for my faith was “unthinkable” (even though it’s taken place throughout history.) As you mention folks take more comfort in “we’re not going to be here” than in a Savior who has promised never to be with us. I used to be one of those folks.

    In April of 2004, my eyes were opened to this error. I was in this room where I sit now, and, upon seeing the truth, asked the Lord, please “prepare me for what lies ahead.” By the grace of God I have so much more peace that words cannot explain it. I was a perpetual worrier before, but now, the peace of God which passes all understanding reigns in my heart like at no other time. My hope is in Jesus Christ; not an escape. (Another word for escape is “retreat”) Thanks for another great post. Have a most blessed day in Jesus

    timbob.

  7. Peter says:

    Padraic – Ah yes, the Late Great Planet Earth – I’ve heard of it but don’t think I’ve ever read it. Actually, I’m not going to catagorically say there is not going to be a rapture – but I am highly suspicious about pretrib teaching…..

    Timbob – I’m glad the post spoke to you! Let’s continue onwards and upwards in doing our little bit to prepare the Church – us included – for the times to come. Thinking of which, I owe you a visit, soon and very soon.

  8. Scotti says:

    I hear you, Peter. May we all be prepared to stand through ever increasing strife for the glory and honor of our Lord Jesus Christ.

  9. Peter says:

    Glad it spoke to you Scotti, and good you could drop by. And I’m listening to your blog theme song now – nice 🙂

  10. code says:

    “The God of life did not sidestep suffering; he conquered death by embracing it.” -jerickson-

    “The purpose of suffering is to be God focused.”

  11. Peter says:

    Amen, something that’s only ever going to be learned by experience I fear.

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