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THE 7000 CLUB

August 23, 2009
The blogosphere is a remarkable forum. Although it’s being used by the powers that be (along with every other cyber-venue) to gather information on the citizens; where they live, what they think, who they associate with, and what have you, for the time being it’s an incredible place to discuss the deep things of God. It’s especially useful in discussing topics which, when brought forth in the local assembly, tend to cause a manifesting of the all-to-familiar “uneasy blank stare” on the part of the brethren. While writing down cogitations is an enjoyable thing, a far more enjoyable aspect of this is the contact with saints from other venues, whom I would have never known of outside of this forum. A visiting of their posts and comments quickly reveal a love for Jesus and a heart which resides in heavenly places. An everlasting perspective wherein no confidence is placed in the weak and beggarly elements of this life. It is “very encouraging.”
I know that this season will not remain long term. The time will shortly arrive when persecution, along with an arresting of the free flow of ideas, will prevail in the four corners of the earth. There may well be a time in which we feel like we’re the only one left who loves the Lord Jesus; especially when those who make up the great falling away prove to be our most vigorous adversaries. Many of these will maintain a christianesque appearance and even think that they are doing God a service by working to do away with the nonconformists. Jesus warned us that such conditions  would prevail in the final moments before his appearing (Matthew 24:22) but I fear that none of us understand the whole of the matter.  I want to relay a comment that was left at Scottish Warriors site on his post “The Gathering Storm.” It’s from a man named Shankar who lives in Dubai and is seriously concerned that some in his congregation don’t seem to understand that persecution is coming. Here’s the comment:
For last couple of years, I am warning the people of God in the land of Dubai, especially to my congregation including our elders about the coming persecution. But no one seems to be taking seriously but at least somebody has the same spirit in another part of the earth. Praise God.
The season of preparing can go right into the season of trying with little or no warning. Richard Wurmbrand wrote about what transpired in Romania. Following the rise of the communist regime, a certain amount of religious freedom was granted. The government utilized this reprieve to “gather information on the citizens; where they live, what they think, who they associate with, and what have you.” On a single day, without any warning, they rounded up all of those considered hostile to the regime; including anyone who professed faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. The crackdown caught almost everyone off guard and left many saints ill-prepared spiritually to endure the ensuing season of intensive persecution. Likewise today, few even consider the possability of real persecution; despite the continual warnings in scripture. For most of us living in the west, persecution is something that only happens “over there” so to speak.
Luke 21:12-15 “But before all these things, they shall lay their hands on you, and persecute you, delivering you up to the synagogues, and into prisons, being brought before kings and rulers for my names sake.
And it shall turn to you for a testimony.
Settle it therefore in your hearts, not to meditate before what ye shall answer:
For I will give you a mouth and wisdom, which all your adversaries shall not be able to gainsay nor resist.”
“Settling it in our hearts to not meditate,” requires spiritual preparation ahead of the trial. It speaks of a closeness to the Lord and a childlike trust in him that will not be shaken when we are suddenly carried to an unfamiliar place that’s not of our choosing. It requires a complete abandonment, from our heart, of everything that will one day cease to be relevant as we hold fast the testimony of Jesus and allign ourselves with those who “commit the keeping of their souls unto him in well doing, as unto a faithful Creator.” We must remain faithful, regardless of the actions of friends, kinfolk, or the elder saints whom we have always held in high regard. The time may come where we feel like we’re the only one left on earth who is holding fast the testimony of Jesus. He must be our only source if we’re to endure such times as these. I’m fully aware of how unbelievable this sounds to many, but the hour of temptation is truly at hand.
We are all familiar with the story of Elijah. I think of him as a type of tribulation saint. He lived in one of the darkest periods in the history of Israel and is one of two people who never experienced a physical death. Ahab; a man far more wicked than any of his predicessors, was king over Israel. He and his wife, Jezebel had caused the land to sink to previously unvisited depths of idolatry and wickedness. For three and a half years, no rain fell upon the land and Ahab accused Elijah of being “he that troubleth Israel.” Finally; in a dramatic showdown against four hundred and fifty prophets of Baal along with four hundred prophets of the groves, the LORD answered by fire the prayer of Elijah. Consuming the sacrifice and making it known to all that “The LORD, he is the God.” When Ahab made the thing known to Jezebel, she issued threatenings against the life of Elijah; promising to put an end to his time within the next day.  
Subsequently, Elijah travelled a days jouney into the wilderness. While sleeping under a juniper tree an angel awakens him twice, to eat cakes that are baking on the coals and to drink that which the LORD has provided. Forty days later, having gone forth in the strength of the cakes and drink which the LORD had provided, he’s in a cave on Mount Horeb; feeling like the only person in the world who continues to be “very jealous for the LORD God of hosts.” He is not distracted by ambient goings on as he patiently waits until the Lord has spoken. Finally, the Creator of all that is, speaks; in a still small voice that only one who is atuned will hear. Elijah is given specific instructions concerning who is to be the next king over Syria, who is to be the next king over Israel, and who is going to stand in his office following his departure from the theater of atoms. The Lord then offers an encouraging piece of information.
I Kings 19:18 “Yet I have left me seven thousand in Israel, all the knees which have not bowed unto Baal, and every mouth which hath not kissed him.”
Even in that time of unprecidented idolatry and wickedness, there were other saints in the land who loved the Holy One of Israel. And so it shall be in the time of the end, when the world is plunged into a tribulation so great, that it surpasses anything that has ever transpired previously. (Presently none of us can truly grasp what this entails. As Frank recently observed, most of us cannot even fathom the full extent of the Holocaust; a time when unimaginable evil presided over most of Europe. Let alone that which is about to break forth) Yet the Lord will sustain those who love him. We may find ourselves in small gatherings of saints; previously unknown to each other, but led of the Spirit to a common location. Or we may find ourselves isolated and tempted to think that we’re the only one left who hasn’t embraced the brave new world. Regardless of our circumstances, we need only to maintain the testimony of Jesus and love not our lives unto the death.
Hebrews 10:35-37 “Cast not away therefore your confidence, which hath great recompence of reward.
For ye have need of patience, that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise.
For yet a little while, and he that shall come will come, and will not tarry.
Well I need to be going for now. I know that this isn’t a pleasant topic for many. Yet this theme consistantly is coming to the forefront. I seriously don’t believe that any of us are as prepared spiritually as we should be for the days to shortly unfold. This urgent need for preparation is further complicated when all but nobody in the local vicinity sees the lateness of the hour beyond a simple theological exercise because they believe “we’re not going to be here.” The comment by Shankar really caught my attention; especially since it came from a part of the world that we normally associate with already being hostile toward the gospel. If the saints in Dubai are not grasping this, how prepared is the average churchgoer in Hometown USA?  May we all draw closer to the Lord Jesus and know that, whatever we face, he will grant us thes trength to endure.
Blessings always in Jesus name.
John 16:33 “These things have I spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.”
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23 comments

  1. I truly believe you. Most people are not yet ready for that kind of suffering and trials. Same here in the Philippines, we double time sharing the reality written in the bible. Not just about the topic of salvation but about living God’s Word everyday so that we may continuously gain strength till that day comes 🙂


  2. As I read your post, I was thinking back on a quote I had read from Richard Wurmbrand’s sermon “Preparing for the Underground Church”:

    “God is the Truth. The Bible is the truth about the Truth. Theology is the truth about the truth about the Truth. A good sermon is the truth about the truth about the truth, about the Truth It is not the Truth. The Truth is God alone. Around this Truth there is a scaffolding of words, of theologies, and of exposition. None of these is of any help in times of suffering. It is only the Truth Himself Who is of help, and we have to penetrate through sermons, through theological books, through everything which is ‘words’ and be bound up with the reality of God Himself.”


  3. Hi Edwin. Thanks for taking time to stop in. it’s always great to hear from those who understand the seriousness of the hour. I praise God for the sense of urgency that you have. We should all be “double timing” in sharing the good news of new life in Jesus and bringing along those who are new.

    Blessings always in Jesus name.


  4. I don’t think you can ever warn enough on this topic. The enemy counts on convincing believers that it’s still far off, or we become lazy because we have always had it so easy in America. I believe a huge part of this is spiritual warfare, and we can no longer be the occasional sunday and holiday believer. We are called to a purpose, and need to read, recognize and understand that this is coming, shortly. We also serve a very faithful God who will indeed give us the tools we need when we need it. Thank you for this, it is a hard but very necessary warning. Looks like I’m behind in reading here…wow…need to catch up! Thanks TimBob 🙂


    • You’re right – the enemy does just that.


  5. Hi Scotti. I remember reading that sermon a while back on Peters site. It is truly an eye opening and thought provoking writing that reveals the level of intimacy with the Lord that we need. In fact, I’ll make a quick link here for anyone who wants to check it out:

    http://theagetocome.wordpress.com/2008/02/10/preparing-for-the-underground-church/

    Thank you very much for making mention of this. Richards words carry much more weight than mine as he’s been through this sort of ordeal.

    Blessings always in Jesus name.


  6. Hi Deb. This is such a huge danger; even if we’re watching. We simply expect tomorrow to be pretty much like today and to really get beyond the theological realm takes diligence. And as you mention, spiritual warfare is a very huge factor. It’s an area in which I’m in need of increased diligence.

    I was thinking earlier today about the folks around me who don’t know Jesus as Savior. The devil isn’t taking any holidays. He’s working every angle possible in an effort to run out the clock on these eternal ones. If he can keep us distracted by irrelevancies, his job becomes much easier. These are very serious times but the Lord is greater than any trial that comes our way.

    May we all be atuned and watching in these critical moments. Thanks so much for stopping by.

    Blessings always in Jesus name.


  7. Your title of this blog post is interesting. David Wilkerson’s devotional for Monday, 24 Aug, is titled, “Are you among the 7000?”

    You’re right when you write that most people think those types of atrocities happen “over there” and not here. I can hardly imagine it myself.


  8. Thanks for sharing, Timbob. It is always encouraging to hear you exhort the brethren to trust to Him who will sustain us during that time.


  9. Hi Code. This is something that I wrestle with as much as anyone; the thought that persecution is coming to this land. I know it to be true, and yet it’s like my brain keeps trying to operate as thought his present reality is going to just continue on. I guess it’s just like so many other battles. Oftentimes the biggest obstacle is our old nature.

    Thanks for stopping in. Blessings always in Jesus name.


  10. Hi Beyond Blue stockings. I likewise receive a lot of encouragement, and am often challenged by the postings from the many saints in this venue. I often wish that we could all be in a common place. (This will happen eventually; when we are gathered at the throne of God.)

    Thanks so much for taking time to stop by. Blessings always in Jesus name.


  11. Hi Timbob,

    Your posts recently have been most thought provoking and you have been linking to some essential reading. Once again, while you have expressed some hard sayings, it is exactly what is needed at this time. The call to prepare and draw ever closer to Jesus in preparation for the time ahead, cannot be over-stressed.

    Bless you, Timbob. 🙂


  12. Hi Timbob,

    I believe through every dispensation of time, no matter how dark, God has always had a people. Things are changing more and more rapidly in our own country, but I am clinging to a God that never changes. No matter what, I want to hold to His unchanging hand.

    Blessings always,

    Carol


  13. The 7000 club . . . I like it. Of course, I sincerely hope and believe there are a lot more than that today. After all, the population explosion and all, and all those Chinese brothers and sisters if no one else. At present, not bowing your knee to Baal is relatively free of cost for most in this country. That will not long be the case.

    Blow the trumpet, Bro.

    Love, Cindy


  14. Timbob – it is a tough topic – people get consumed with the day to day, their routines, and focusing on what is happening in the flesh while their spirits areunder serious attack. Preparation by abiding daily in His Word and prayer are key to discerning the times and what lies ahead. Thanks for broaching a tough topic.

    Rachel


  15. Hi Fivepeasinapod. It’s great to hear from you. We are definately in a time of preparation and I’m being dealt with on a number of fronts insofar as areas of my life that are in need of addressing. Wh9ich is the reason that the previous post was brought forth. And while we see a vague picture of what’s coming, what each of us will face as individuals is anyones guess. Praise God that we won’t face it alone.

    On the blogroll, there’s a writing by Corey Ten Boom, whose father gave her a perfect example of how the Grace of God will suffice for any situation. When trials come our way, the grace of God will be more than adequate. He always arrives right on time.

    Thanks so much for commenting; both here and on the previous one as well. Blessings always in Jesus name.

    timbob


  16. Hi Carol. There has indeed been a consistant witness for the Lord throughout every generation. One of the amazing things about the age to come will be to be gathered with all of these saints in the presence of the Lord Jesus. Just the thought of this is mind blowing and something very much to look forward to.

    Thanks so much for stopping by. Blessings always in Jesus name.


  17. Hi cindy. Thanks so much for stopping by. You make a very notable observation that today “not bowing to baal” is a relatively cost-free endeavor but that this will one day change. It’s that day of change that we must be prepared for. It’s also imperative for those of us who have never been called upon to make choices under such circumstances, to acknowledge this lack of experience and allow the Lord to prepare us. The days ahead will be hardest on those who have never faced such comprehensive adversity.

    The number of “7000” was used to make a reference to the 7000 faithful in Israel at the time of Elijah. Even then, it was a small number.

    Thanks again for your thoughts. Blessings always in Jesus name.


  18. Hi rachel. You’ve touched on a very important thing. Many get consumed by the daily routine; so much so that they can almost “do it in their sleep.” Wow; there’s a pondering. Monday afternoon I was in Kalamazoo and somehow the indifference of so many was more notable than usual. It was no different than any other time up there. In fact, the receptiveness to the gospel seemed a little higher than normal. But to just look around and see the masses going about the plan of the day as though this present snapshot of reality will last forever, was heartbreaking.

    Thanks for your observation. This is something that we all must watch for as it’s easy to fall into the routine. Blessings always in Jesus name.


  19. LAST TRUMPET IS OUT


  20. Hi Code. Thanks. I’m keeping your brother in prayer.

    Blessings always in Jesus name.


  21. “we need only to maintain the testimony of Jesus and love not our lives unto the death.”

    Thats it right there brother, right there is the rub……..Frank


  22. Hi Frank. Thanks so much for stopping by. I remember reading somewhere (perhaps it was on one of your posts) that throughout history, the saints were persecuted primarily for what they refused to do. They refused to bow down to effigies, they refused to go along with institutionally sanctioned error, and what have you. “They refused to renounce their faith in Jesus” regardless of the cost. The time will come where they will be put to death for “refusing” to receive a mark.

    To endure unto the end; not seeking to hang on to ourlife here, is imperative. May we all give diligence to ensure that we’re not harboring anything contrary that would foster compromise.

    Thanks so much for stopping by. Blessings always in Jesus name.



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