Is there hope for the future? Are things going to get better? It sure doesn't seem like it, does it? Economic, political and social conditions appear to be rapidly DETERIORATING and getting WORSE day by day, and it is becoming more and more apparent that we face VERY difficult and trying days ahead! Time is running OUT, not just for SOME nations, but for the entire WORLD!
But as bad as the present global situation is, with wars, famines, pollution, social upheavals, crime, the collapse of moral standards in countless formerly-Christian nations, and the threat of thermonuclear war hanging over our heads, it is reassuring to know that all these things were PREDICTED in detail in the BIBLE thousands of years ago! (See Matthew 24:1-11; Revelation 17-18) Even the present great apostasy and loss of faith amongst Christians in recent years was predicted in God's Word! (See Matthew 24:12; 1Timothy 4:1; 2Timothy 3:13; 2Thes.2:2,3.)
Before God finally sets things straight, the Bible predicts that things are going to get even WORSE!--Very soon! In these last days of Man's history on Earth before Jesus returns, a Devil-possessed dictator known as the ANTICHRIST will arise and set up an anti-God one-World government! He will make WAR on God's people, and his oppression and persecution of Christians will be the worst that this World has ever known! (Daniel 8:24; Revelation 13:7; Matthew 24:21,22)
But even though the immediate future of the World is growing darker and blacker, and in fact is getting worse all the time, there IS hope! The NEAR future is NOT so hopeful, but the future just BEYOND is GLORIOUS! For after the Antichrist and his forces have ruled for only a few SHORT years, the Bible promises that Jesus Christ will return and completely CRUSH them in the catastrophic Battle of Armageddon! He will then set up HIS Kingdom of HEAVEN ON EARTH, and rule as King of kings and Lord of lords!--The famous Millennium!
So no matter how bad these coming days may seem to be, for those of us who love Jesus, even BAD news is GOOD news!--Because we know that the sooner things get WORSE, the sooner they're going to get BETTER AFTERWARDS and the sooner JESUS is going to return and put a STOP to this present madness! Luke 21:28 says, "And when these things begin to happen, lift up your heads, for your Salvation draws near!" When the Antichrist's forces really start taking over, look UP, because Jesus is coming soon! So look UP!--Be ENCOURAGED! "This generation shall not pass away till all these things shall be fulfilled!" (Matthew 24:34)
No matter how much the Antichrist forces try to suppress and wipe out God's children, they will never completely defeat us! There are going to be MILLIONS of true Christians who will live right through these terrible times and be here to greet the Lord when He returns at the END of this time of Great Tribulation! (1Thes.4:16,17; Mat.24:29-31)
In spite of ALL the Enemy will try to do to stop us, no matter WHAT lies ahead in the dark days to come, NOTHING can conquer Christ's righteous cause, and everything is going to work out right in the End! The darkest hour is just before dawn!--The glorious dawn when "the Sun of Righteousness shall arise with healing in His wings!" (Malachi 4:2) and Jesus shall return to rule the Earth! So keep "looking up", "looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of our Saviour Jesus Christ"! (Titus 2:13)
Jesus promised, "In the World you SHALL have tribulation."--He promised that without a doubt we WOULD have troubles, problems and trials, and even suffer persecution for His name! But what did He tell us to do? Moan and complain and retreat in despair? NO! He said, "REJOICE and be EXCEEDING GLAD! In the World you shall have tribulation, but be of GOOD CHEER, for I have OVERCOME the World!--And lo, I am with YOU always, even unto the end of the World! I will never leave you nor forsake you!" (Matthew 5:1O-12; 28:2O; John 16:33; Hebrews 13:5)
JESUS overcame the World, and because His Spirit lives in OUR hearts, WE can over come the World too! He promises in 1John 4:4, "You are of GOD, little children, and have OVERCOME them, for GREATER is HE (Jesus) that is in YOU than he (the Devil and his anti-Christ forces) that are in the World!" "And THIS is the victory that overcometh the World, even our FAITH!" (1John 5:4) If you believe in Jesus and just keep trusting in Him and His Word through all your troubles, you'll emerge triumphant, despite all the trials and tribulations that come your way! (See Revelation 12:12,11)
Despite all the oppressive might of the Antichrist, despite the coming economic collapse, the plagues and famines, the wars and persecution that we are soon to face, we shall OVERCOME! "Neither tribulation nor distress nor persecution nor famine nor nakedness nor peril nor sword...shall separate us from the love of Christ! In ALL these things we are MORE than conquerors through Him that loves us!" (Romans 8:35-37)
WHY will GOD allow HIS OWN CHILDREN, whom He LOVES, to go through such trials and tests? Well, first of all we know that "ALL things work together for GOOD to them that love God." (Romans 8:28) He allows us to "go through the fire" so that we may be PURIFIED and PURGED and come forth BETTER vessels, and be WORTHY to rule and reign with Him in His Kingdom of Heaven on Earth! He promises us, "If we SUFFER with Him, we shall also REIGN with Him!" "And to him that OVERCOMETH will I grant to sit with Me in My THRONE, and I will give him POWER over the nations." (2Timothy 2:12; Revelation 3:21; 2:26) (See also 1Peter 1:6,7; Revelation 7:9,13-15; 2O:4; Daniel 11:35.)
Will YOU be faithful and true to Jesus NOW and in the coming days so that you will be WORTHY to govern the World with Him TOMORROW?--That bright and glorious tomorrow of Heaven on Earth when He rules in a Thousand-Year Reign of Love, justice and peace! How small our trials and problems will seem then! "For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are NOTHING compared to the GLORY that shall be REVEALED in us!" (Romans 8:18)--"For eye has not seen, nor has ear heard, nor has it entered into the heart of man, the things which God has prepared for them that love Him." (1Corinthians 2:9) "Wherefore comfort one another with these words." (1Thessalonians 4:18)
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