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Keep the faith

Last Sunday I preached a message that was entitled "Only God knows". In the world today, there are many things we know. God has granted man knowledge of so much. I just prayed with someone who is having knee replacement surgery tomorrow. We know all about that surgery, the recovery and the physical therapy that is required. Elaine had to have that surgery several years ago. In her case and for the one I mentioned a moment ago, the knowledge and the skills to do such a surgery came from God. He allowed man to underhand perfect the methods necessary to do such a surgery.

Even with there being so much that we do know, there is an even greater amount which we do not know. Not just in the medical field but in every area of life. That is why we so often pray something like "Lord, I just don't know" and that is so true but He does know. He knows everything, He is omniscient, all knowing.

The all knowing, all present and all powerful God Jehovah knows it all. Therefore, it is easy to say that there are things that only God knows. Now the purpose of the message by that title was to speak to and encourage the people as to what is going on around us. This world is an absolute wreck. Every generation says it so I am not bothered to say "I never thought I would see in my lifetime...". The list seems endless of things that I never thought I would see. Things that I never thought would even be seen or said in public. Acceptance of things that are against God's order and thus against nature are now common occurrences.

I have not lived my life hidden from the craziness that is going around us all. I had hoped and still hold out that at least in some ways that we as a creation might get back on the right path. Because the path we are on leads to destruction. Now Biblically, I know that this must occur. I know things are going to continue to get worse and worse with each passing day.

I think the thing that causes me so much consternation is that so many people just don't seem to care about how bad things are getting. I mean we aren't even throwing out obstacles to this insanity that is going on all around us. So there is nothing to slow down this downward spiral that mankind is now on.

I know that this has been going on since Adam and Eve. Cain killed Able and Lamech took two wives. David committed adultry with Bathsheba and she became pregnant and the baby would die. Uriah would be killed and David would lie. This only gets us so far in the Bible before we read all of the other stories of what mankind did as the Scriptures says ...all the people did whatever seemed right in their own eyes. (Judges 21:25)

Let's be honest about that and admit that things certainly have not gotten any better over the history of man. There is no way to say that life is better, yes more convenient and easier in some ways, but not better. As I take the time each day to see what is happening in the world, I sometimes have to fight the desire to just shut the world out. Now I am not yet convinced that may not be the worse decision. There is very little that encourages us today. Little that makes us say well that certainly is a great thing to endeavor to do.

We have a government that is in chaos and disrepair. Leaders who couldn't lead someone through an open door with lights and sirens blowing to mark the way. They are totally consumed with some strange ability to look at something and say it is something else.

We are in trouble and as I often find myself saying "even so come quickly Lord Jesus". Dear God, send your Son to receive His bride the church. As Paul said to the Thessalonian Christians in 1 Thessalonians 4 NLT-

13 And now, dear brothers and sisters, we want you to know what will happen to the believers who have died[f] so you will not grieve like people who have no hope.

14 For since we believe that Jesus died and was raised to life again, we also believe that when Jesus returns, God will bring back with him the believers who have died.

15 We tell you this directly from the Lord: We who are still living when the Lord returns will not meet him ahead of those who have died.

16 For the Lord himself will come down from heaven with a commanding shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet call of God. First, the believers who have died[h] will rise from their graves.

17 Then, together with them, we who are still alive and remain on the earth will be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. Then we will be with the Lord forever.

He closes in the next verse by saying-

18 So encourage each other with these words.

Let me close today by saying to you with these words of encouragement. Keep the faith and look for His return. Tell others about Jesus. Remember the instructions of the Lord from Proverbs 3:5-6

5 Trust in the Lord with all your heart;

do not depend on your own understanding.

6 Seek his will in all you do,

and he will show you which path to take.

In God's Grace,

Elbert Nasworthy

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