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Temptation with Perplexity

July 10, 2008

 Luke 21:19 “In your patience possess ye your souls.”

I Peter 1:7-9 “That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ: Whom having not seen, ye love: in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory: Receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls.”

Actually I should have started with I Peter 1:1, but that would have consumed much space in what has the potential of becoming a lengthy post. The above verses reveal some important truths.

( 1 ) Trials are of more value than gold. It’s amazing how many saints are consumed with collecting wood hay and stubble as opposed to laying up treasure in heaven.

( 2 ) As Jesus said to Thomas “Blessed are they who have not seen and yet believed.” Although we are currently present in the flesh and see not our Lord and Savior, our love for him should grow continuously.

( 3 ) The end of our faith is salvation; an eternity with the Lord who is from everlasting to everlasting. We must continuously focus on the Lord Jesus and the blessed hope that we have. This post is going to cover some things that many will challenge every saint; regardless of their maturity level. Yet I bring them forth because to suddenly be thrust into situations and not be prepared spiritually will spell certain disaster. This next verse was on my heart much yesterday while driving to Kalamazoo.

Hebrews 4:15 “For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.”

This is one of those truths that become increasingly incredible. For thirty three years, Jesus was in a physical body, participating in the same fallen world that we are currently players in, In that time, he never sinned; even though he was tempted in “all points” as we are. He was in perfect obediance to the Father and although he could have called twelve thousand angels, he instead endured the cross and paid for our sins with his own blood. Our salvation is so incredible, that one could spend a lifetime of pondering and still not grasp the full of it. Lately I’ve been asking the Lord for a deeper revelation of just how great our salvation is. Had we died the day before coming to Jesus, we would be in hell at this very moment. The God who created all things was merciful when we were contrary, and granted us repentance to the acknowledging of the truth. WOO HOO! THAT’S A GREAT SALVATION!

Temptation is something that will always be around as long as we are abiding in the flesh. As we grow in Christ, it’s easy to become neglegent and even convince ourselves that we would never succumb to certain things. We may even catagorize temptations into two camps; those things to be careful of and those areas where we think we’re beyond stumbling. We can be assured that the devil knows when we have become over-confident or dull of hearing and he knows exactly when to offer up a sugestion. He’s continuously seeking whom he may devour and lies in wait for sheep who unwittingly begin to stray from the shepherd. This is important to be mindful of because we’re entering a season where we’ll face temptations that most cannot fathom at this current time. Temptations that; if succumbed to, will result in everlasting lament. This post is about to enter the realm of things “hard to consider.”

Matthew 19:29-30 “And every one that hath forsaken houses, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands for my sake, shall receive an hundredfold, and shall inherit everlasting life.” But many that are first shall, be last; and the last shall be first.”

Earlier this week on his shortwave broadcast, Steve Quayle mentioned  a couple of phone calls that he recieved a few years ago. They were from ladies who asked the question “can a person be forgiven if they take the mark of the beast in order to provide for their families?” Of course a person CANNOT take this mark under any circumstances as it will forever separate that person from God. Yet despite the scriptural warnings against such an act, this idea was being floated by individuals who undoubtedly love their children, as we all do, but were looking at things from a perspective of sustaining life in this world. If such ponderings are taking place during a season of relative peace and safety, one can only imagine what will be up for consideration when mens hearts are failing them for fear. As much as we love our children, spouses, parents, and neighbors, we absolutely must put Jesus first. Compromise; even with the intent of helping those closest to us, ultimately does disservice to them as well. (Psalm 37:25 reveals that God is our true provider; regardless of the ambient dramas)

I’m bringing this up, disturbing as it is, because we’re entering a time in which circumstances will be way beyond our natural ability to contend with. The old song “I Need Thee Every Hour” will take on a much deeper meaning because if we’re not abiding close to the Lord Jesus, we’ll go nutty along with everyone around us. At this moment, I can’t imagine being unable to provide for my household and yet I know that the machinery is in place to facilitate the identification of every “global citizen” with a mark.” We know from scripture that such a system “will” become manifest, that those who know not God will embrace it, and that without taking a mark, a person will be unable to participate in the global economy. We know that the saints will be prevailed over in the physical realm as they are systematically sought out and beheaded. I’m sorry for being so gruesome, but the truth is that we have been counted as sheep for the slaughter for thousands of years and some are appointed to glorify God with such a testimony. (Revelation 2:10 reveals this to be the case. Revelation 15:2-3 is incredible!)  

Matthew 24:19 “And woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck in those days!”

Note the use of an exclamation mark after this verse. Natural affection causes us to look out for the well being of our households and indeed to care not for our own is to be counted worse than an infidel. (I Timothy 5:8.) For those who have children to care for, a whole new set of temptations become manifest in times of upheaval. In other words, if we were to enter the hour of temptation single and without children, it would be much easier to love not our life unto death. But when children are in the picture and our faithfulness may cause them to (this is really hard to write) endure physical suffering, we will be in over our heads. Only through the power of the Holy Ghost can we endure this. Such times reveal what a person truly believes and any seeds of doubt or unbelief will spell disaster for all parties involved. Richard Wurmbrand once stated words to the effect that “we must move beyond the realm of words and grasp the truths that they relay to us.”

Anyone who has read Richard Wurmbrands testimony will be familiar with things that transpired in Romania. Many parents were told by the authorities to either deny Christ or they would forever lose custody of their children. Yet many held fast the profession of their faith; even knowing that the state would henceforth have unlimited influence on their children. He went on to tell of children who maintained the testimony of Jesus; despite years of unfettered communist ideological instruction. “With God all things are possible!” It’s imperative to not base things on natural reasoning; but to trust in the living God who holds the very universe together and is able to sustain his own; even in the most hostile of situations.

These considerations should cause us to drop every ounce of superfluous nonsense (note to myself) and draw closer to the Lord than we’ve ever been in our lives. We “must” do this as the spiritual climate is growing darker by the hour and prophetic fulfillment is transpiring. The devil is currently in a spiritual “two-minute offense” as he knows that time is running out. I know that this is a hard post and it would be much easier to write about what I desire to write about instead of what’s on my heart. If there’s one dominant concern; it’s that very few saints are prepared spiritually for what’s about to transpire. I wonder if I’m prepared; especially after a topic such as this. It’s easy to say “Lord I’m ready to die for you” when sitting in fron of a computer with a box of town house crackers, a container of Philadelphia cream cheese, and a can of anchovies. When your cupboards full, the paychecks are consistant, and the children are well fed, we can make all kinds of lofty professions. We must submit ourselves to God continuously and make use of every possible moment to grow spiritually and prepare.

I wish to all, a blessed day in Jesus.

Revelation 21:4 “And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.”

 

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4 comments

  1. Good challenge Timbob. We can be secure in Christ alone, in nothing and nobody else.

    Now, a challenge / thought for you:

    Earlier this week on his shortwave broadcast, Steve Quayle mentioned a couple of phone calls that he received a few years ago. They were from ladies who asked the question “can a person be forgiven if they take the mark of the beast in order to provide for their families?” Of course a person CANNOT take this mark under any circumstances as it will forever separate that person from God.

    I tend to be a little agnostic about the nature of the mark, tending towards a more metaphorical interpretation (i.e. on the hand – action and head – thought). That’s not to say there would not be a physical nature too, but that the nature of the mark is something willingly taken unto oneself, in either thought or deed. In that sense, I tend to see the mark as being descriptive, not prescriptive.

    The trouble perhaps with only seeing the mark as a physical thing is this – what if you were forced, physically, to take the mark (chip)? It’s certainly not beyond the bounds of possibility to have such a thing done against your will. What then? Are you to be seperated from the love of God?

    Now, it’s certainly possible that God can ensure that never happens, but it this trail of thought that makes me see the mark as describing a real choice made, rather than proscribing something done to people. In this case, a person is seperated from the love of God not through an arbitary piece of technology, but by a willful choice.

    That’s my 2p for the day 🙂


  2. Greetings Peter. Indeed the most notable aspect is the choice that a person makes. I’ve always looked at it sort of like a drivers licence. A person can choose not to have one, but they cannot legally drive. A forced mark; where someone was restrained and a chip (or whatever) was implanted would carry no weight as it was performed against the persons wishes. This I am certain of.

    We certainly don’t see the whole of this issue, but you have hit on the key component. It involves a conscious choice on the part of those who seek to save their lives in this world. Thanks so much for stopping and offering up an important observation.

    Have a blessed evening in Jesus.


  3. You’re welcome Timbob, he said, belatedly!


  4. Brilliant!



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