WARS AND RUMORS OF WARS

Matthew 24:6 ‘And you shall hear of wars and rumors of wars….’

1 Thessalonians 5:3 ‘For when they shall say, Peace and Safety; then sudden destruction shall come upon them, as travail comes upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape.’

Should we interpret ‘wars and rumors of wars’ as a sign of the end times when there have been so infrequent times of peace in the last several hundred years? Although there were over 30 wars, conflicts, civil unrest and uprisings in just the last century, that number has been surpassed already in the first quarter of this century. There is no doubt that the world is becoming increasingly violent, and technological advances as well as recent acquisitions of nuclear weapons by unstable governments have escalated the probability of a major war in the not too distant future. Also, terrorist activities are creating tensions between nations, as some seek to gain political advantage through support of these activities. This is particularly evident in the Middle East, where the majority of Muslim nations are aligned against Israel, God’s chosen people, and are seeking ways to defeat or destroy that nation. Not a year passes without both new conflicts and rumors of potential wars.

In spite of escalating tensions on a worldwide scale, there are still those who hope for and expect that man will eventually find a peaceful solution to the conflicts and terrorism which continues to increase with time. As indicated in Thessalonians, eventually there will be a false peace which will only last for a short time, and this will be followed by war and destruction on a scale never before experienced on earth. While many will say that current events are more of the same, the increasing frequency and intensity signifies that there will be no lasting peace. In Isaiah Jesus Christ is described as the ‘Prince of Peace’, a title which He will prove to be deserved when He returns to rule the world. Not only will Christ bring world peace in the future – He offers peace today to all who will receive Him as Saviour. This is a lasting personal peace which passes all human understanding, and endures regardless of the presence of conflict in the world.

Do you believe world peace can be achieved through human effort?
Have you experienced the ‘peace of Christ’?
Are you looking forward to Christ’s return?

Doctrine of Demons

WHAT IN THE WORLD IS HAPPENING? DOCTRINES OF DEMONS AND SEDUCTION

1 Timothy 4:1 ‘Now the Spirit speaks expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils .’

1 Thessalonians 2:3 ‘Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come (Christ’s return), except there come a falling away first.’

Recent reports indicate that in the past few years over 500 churches have closed their doors in Britain, while about 300 new mosques have been opened. This is compelling evidence of professing Christians ‘departing from the faith’ or ‘falling away’ as the above verses predict. And it is further evidence that we are in the latter times, or the age in which Christ shall return. Sadly it is also a trend that is being experienced throughout much of the Western world, and in countries which were once considered strongholds of Christianity, such as Canada and the United States.

‘Doctrines of devils’ is a term which many would consider extreme or exaggerated, when describing the beliefs of other religions or individuals. However, when we consider Jesus’ teachings, we realize that He stated without question that He alone was the ‘Way to the Father’ (John 14:6), and that we are either followers of Him or of the devil. He left no opportunity for anyone to choose an alternate path to heaven; yet this is one of Satan’s greatest deceptions – that there are many paths leading to the one God.

Today we see a great hunger for spiritual fulfillment, but the majority of people are ‘giving heed to seducing spirits’ such as Christian cults, New Age doctrines and self help programs, many of which stress that everyone is okay spiritually, and don’t need the spiritual rebirth that is found only in a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.

All religions, other than Christianity, require their adherents to achieve their ultimate goals, or reach the promised land through some kind of effort or accomplishment. This is another ‘doctrine of demons’, as the Bible clearly states that salvation is ‘by grace through faith’ (Ephesians 2:8,9) and not by ‘works of righteousness’ (Titus 3:5). If one could be saved by self effort or works of any kind, then Christ’s death was unnecessary or in vain.

Do you believe demonic deception is active in today’s world?
Do you believe there is more than one path to God?
If so, why did Christ have to die for the world’s sin?