As Always

2 Peter 3:3-4 “Knowing this first of all, that scoffers will come in the last days with scoffing, following their own sinful desires. They will say, “Where is the promise of his coming? For ever since the fathers fell asleep, all things are continuing as they were from the beginning of creation.”

What events happening today show any signs that we are living in the last days?

There are those who recognize the urgency of the hour and then there are those who turn a deaf ear to the cries of warning. The closer we get to the soon and inevitable return of Christ, the more these past warnings resonate.

“People have been saying this for years”, “There have always been wars and famine”, “Many thought Hitler was the AntiChrist”, go the responses and so people continue to live their lives, oblivious to the reality of what is transpiring around them.

Should the faithful followers of Christ continue to warn people about the events that will soon unfold, even if people have closed their ears to listening?

I believe Christians should not only warn others, they shouldn’t shy away from telling anyone who might listen. Sure, the world will think your crazy and even many fellow believers will be reluctant to harbor such thoughts, but one thing is certain; the Lord is not slow in keeping His promises and the season of His return is definitely upon us.

Skeptics

Jude 1:17-19 “But, dear friends, remember what the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ foretold. They said to you, “In the last times there will be scoffers who will follow their own ungodly desires.” These are the people who divide you, who follow mere natural instincts and do not have the Spirit.’

I’ve talked a lot about the signs of the season, many of the events unfolding in our world today point directly to the warnings in God’s Word of what will occur before the Lord returns. Today, I want to focus more on the skeptic, why the skeptic is the way they are, and what our focus should be regarding them.

Acts 13:41 “ ‘Look, you scoffers, wonder and perish, for I am going to do something in your days that you would never believe, even if someone told you.’ ”

  • First, our expectation should be that scoffers will not be hard to find.

There has been ample warning by multiple authors in God’s Word that scoffers will be everywhere during the last times. As believers, bold with the Truth of God, we shouldn’t shy away from proclaiming the message no matter how much they belittle you, there is a reason scoffers don’t believe.

  1. Their sinful desires are at risk of judgement. The scoffer doesn’t like the idea of how the Creator is going to return to judge the world in righteousness and truth.
  2. They are not led by the Spirit but rather by the flesh. Scoffers lack the knowledge of Truth because they have not entrusted their lives to Jesus. It seems reasonable to assume that if a person has rejected God, they are certainly going to reject His message.
  3. They will not believe no matter how much proof you give them. This doesn’t mean we shouldn’t share the message, it just indicates that biblical reason is not reasonable to them.

My hope is that some of these scoffers and skeptics will see the events unfold around them, particularly after the rapture, with a hope that some might turn and repent.

For those who refuse to believe that God has a plan and His timing will not be delayed, their lives reflect their careless attitude of unbelief.

The Unbeliever

Luke 21:34-36 “Be careful, or your hearts will be weighed down with carousing, drunkenness and the anxieties of life, and that day will close on you suddenly like a trap. For it will come on all those who live on the face of the whole earth. Be always on the watch, and pray that you may be able to escape all that is about to happen, and that you may be able to stand before the Son of Man.”

Do you see the pattern of the scoffer?

The evidences for unbelief in the last days are the signs proliferating today. There is sexual promiscuity, alcoholism and drug abuse with a prevalent fear and anxiety that will continue to pervade much of our culture. The ones who partake will know they are living in sin and the thought of impending judgement hangs over them like a weight of shame. Belittling those who give warning is a way to deny a potential conclusion to their actions.

For those who recognize their sin, it is God’s moral law that leads them there and it is the gospel that gives them hope. The ones who watch and pray are likened to a bride who awaits the bridegroom who has been preparing their home.

When Jesus returns, those who have looked for Him will be satisfied.

John 3:29 “The bride belongs to the bridegroom. The friend who attends the bridegroom waits and listens for him, and is full of joy when he hears the bridegroom’s voice. That joy is mine, and it is now complete.”

The joy of those who will witness the return of their Savior will be a time of great rejoicing, the sorrow of those who have denied Him will likewise be great.

The Indignant

Among unbelievers are those who hear the Word of Truth, recognize their sin and turn and repent. There will also be those who no matter what proof is given, no matter how compelling the argument, or fearful the warnings, they will not move past their stubborn insistence to reject Christ.

2 Corinthians 4:4 “In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.”

LIke Pharaoh whose heart grew hard as the Lord dismantled the gods of Egypt, people will become more defiant the more they hear the message of salvation. Like light that blinds the eyes of those who might see, the light of the gospel will be too much for them to receive.

Proverbs 19:29 “Condemnation is ready for scoffers, and beating for the backs of fools.”

Even in Hell the indignant will scream out in rage against God, angry that His justice is served. The defiant heart will not give ground, for the believer who shares the Truth it is important to recognize those who are hard and just move on.

The Fool

Proverbs 13:1 “A wise son hears his father’s instruction, but a scoffer does not listen to rebuke.”

Discerning between the wise and the fool (scoffer), is to walk in the wisdom of the Lord. There is like a spiritual wall of darkness surrounding those who are living in hatred toward God, that hatred will be directed towards His people as well.

Psalm 1:1 “Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers;”

The scoffer thinks he or she is a position of judgement. They think they judge between what is true or false, having some knowledge of philosophy or world religions, they believe they can intellectualize through their confusion and come to a right conclusion.

When a believer presents the Truth of God’s Word, they present a scenario that denies the scoffers reasoning and this doesn’t go over well.

It is never worth arguing with those who place themselves in positions as scoffers, it doesn’t bear the fruit of the gospel. If others are listening to the conversation, and your not getting shouted down, lay out the gospel with peace and joy, maybe someone around you is convicted and turns to the Lord.

Stay strong my friends, the world will hate you but rest in knowing they hated Jesus first, it is a sign that you reflect Jesus by their response.

One day the world will see the error of their ways, every knee will have to bow before the King and Jesus will be glorified.

What a day that will be.

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