Sunday, April 30, 2006

As It Was In The Days Of…Jehoiakim?

(This is from an internet friend of mine here in NC, D. Ray Purdue, Jr., who publishes an email newsletter from time to time called "OpenDoor Newsletter." If you like what you read below, you may want to subscribe to his newsletter by sending an email to him at opendoornewsletter@earthlink.net requesting to be added to his mailing list.)

It doesn’t take much for one to realize that we are living in the last days, the end times. The Bible has many references as to what those last days will be, for mankind. Our Saviour said that, "But as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be." (Matthew 24:37) Those were obviously wicked days, man at his absolute worst. These latter times are very evil as well, and it is hard to imagine how things could possibly get worse. Should the Lord tarry in His coming then we know that things will become worse. And if that is not bad enough, just think of how evil it will be during the Great Tribulation in the reign of Satan and his anti-Christ.

What about the last days of a nation? Does God have anything to say in His Word about the end of a nation or a people? I believe the Bible does. Not necessarily a specific nation, but any nation that turns their back on Christ. We live in a nation that has turned her back on Christ, the very One that she was built upon. A curse is pronounced against a nation that does such a thing. Psalm 9:17 lays it out quite plainly, "The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God." Any nation that knew God, but chose to forget Him has but three things to look forward to: judgment, destruction, and death. Not very pleasant, is it?

But we have nothing to worry about, do we? America is after all, a Christian nation. Right? We have Christian leaders in our state and federal governments. We have a good, Bible-believing president, who talks about his salvation experience. We pledge allegiance to the flag, have freedom of religion, and send missionaries to foreign countries. So we are ok, aren’t we? One thing I do not use to describe America is Christian. We are anything but a Christian nation. A Christian nation would not throw God out of its educational system and teach, rather program, children the values of evolution and humanism. A Christian nation would not sacrifice millions of her unborn children to the gods of convenience and pleasure. A 9,000-page tome could never cover all the reasons why America is not a Christian nation. Suffice it to say, we are not.

To understand how close I believe our nation is to its end, one can read the passages of Scripture that lead up to the captivity of Israel and Judah. Reading those chapters, you can clearly see similarities between the children of Israel and our own country. For sake of time and space I will only focus on one chapter, but take the time to read the last few chapters of II Kings, II Chronicles, and all of Jeremiah and Lamentations, what you see may surprise you, and possibly scare you.

"In the beginning of the reign of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah king of Judah came this word from the LORD, saying, Thus saith the LORD; Stand in the court of the LORD'S house, and speak unto all the cities of Judah, which come to worship in the LORD'S house, all the words that I command thee to speak unto them; diminish not a word: If so be they will hearken, and turn every man from his evil way, that I may repent me of the evil, which I purpose to do unto them because of the evil of their doings. And thou shalt say unto them, Thus saith the LORD; If ye will not hearken to me, to walk in my law, which I have set before you, To hearken to the words of my servants the prophets, whom I sent unto you, both rising up early, and sending them, but ye have not hearkened; Then will I make this house like Shiloh, and will make this city a curse to all the nations of the earth." Jeremiah 26:1-6

Jeremiah stood out like a sore thumb among the majority of the inhabitants of Judah in those days. He was a priest whom God had called as a prophet. Unlike the other priests and "prophets" of his day, he preached the truth, and said exactly what God wanted him to say. And since God was about to judge Judah, Jeremiah didn’t have anything good to say about their "religion", their country or their capitol city. Very few liked him. The king hated him, had him arrested, and wanted to kill him. The priest hated him even more. And the prophets accused him of lying, hypocrisy and of being a traitor. Instead of repenting and getting right with God after hearing one of Jeremiah’s messages, Judah chose to persecute him, and to try to have him murdered.

God had no desire to judge Judah. He would much rather to have forgiven their sins, and restored their glory. But when given that opportunity, Judah only had deaf ears toward God’s pleadings.

Today in America, any preacher that is worth his salt, and preaches the truth, can testify of the same as Jeremiah. No one wants to hear or know the truth anymore. People would rather be told lies. If you continue to read chapter 26 in Jeremiah, then you will see that the people and the priests would rather have Jeremiah to prophesy lies to them, rather than the truth. This is why it is so offensive to many if you are a fundamental, Bible-believing Christian. People are angry with the Bible whenever it is preached or taught.

You are never very popular when you start pointing out sin. You really become the most unpopular person in town when you start saying anything bad about the good ole US of A. And when you have a "conservative" in the White House, folks really become unglued if you say anything about him. But the truth is the truth. America had better change her ways, fast, if she wishes to escape the wrath of the Almighty God. We can talk about how America is so much better than the other nations of the world. That really does not matter much. Those nations never had what America once had. To whom much is given, much shall be required. Much is about to be required of our nation and us.

As you read the following chapters, and the closing chapters of II Kings and II Chronicles it is obvious that very few, if any heeded the words of Jeremiah. Will that be the fate of America? Will history repeat herself once more? It doesn’t have to.

Imagine if Peter had asked our Saviour, "Lord, will America be judged?" Jesus probably would have replied, "As it was in the days of Jehoiakim, king of Judah, so shall it be in the day that God judges America."

2 Comments:

Blogger Bro Tim said...

Bro Jim thanks for sharing this with us. I would have to say America is probably seeing the first parts of God's judgement and if Jesus don't come back we will see God judge America. As far as the oval office and that man being saved only God knows his heart but he has homosexuals on his staff, he has us in a war that all we are doing is destroying Iraq. I believe we should have taken Saddam out but now I believe we are fighting all terroists. I believe and I may be wrong but Bush is in office to discredit Christians. He has said in interviews we worship the same God as the muslim but worse of all I have never heard him give a testimony of Salvation. We will see the greatest judgement on this country when that jezebel Hillary becomes the first president of the United States. Lord willing we will go home before that happens. I just thought I give some of my own opinions on what is happening in America. Have a great day. Bro Tim

7:57 AM  
Blogger Jim said...

Bro. Tim,

Thanks for the comments and the thoughts regarding President Bush... if he is saved, he was never discipled and he is a very poor Bible student. However, I do believe the Lord is using his presidency to set things in motion as we approach "the last days." Since he has been if office, world affairs have changed drastically, and everything appears to be lining up just as the Word of God promised!!!!!

7:09 PM  

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