We continue our study of Luke 21 and look at the other attitudes that Jesus exhorts us to adopt so that we may be tuned up for the end times.
4. Waiting patiently:
19 By standing firm you will gain life.
Perhaps nothing is more difficult for man than waiting. Being temporal creatures with an eternal intent, we find the restriction of time that life imposes difficult to bear. We like things to happen fast and being asked to wait is frustrating. It is no different for the spiritual journey. When God asks us to wait patiently for the promised eternity yonder, it is difficult to believe but even more difficult to wait for its fulfillment. The temptation to give up is real and Jesus exhorts his listeners to stand firm in the faith and keep pressing on with the pilgrimage.
5. Working out events:
31 Even so, when you see these things happening, you know that the kingdom of God is near.
A Christian needs to be familiar with the Bible as well as the newspaper. Understanding events in the light of Biblical prophecy is crucial to being prepared for the end times. The end time prophecies in the Bible are closely linked with the progress of the nation of Israel. The events in the volatile Middle East become important to understanding the work of God in bringing about the end. The increasing isolation of Israel and the re-building of the temple in Jerusalem are widely considered to be end-time events.
6. Worldliness to be rejected:
34 “Be careful, or your hearts will be weighed down with dissipation, drunkenness —
Dissipation stands for wasteful and foolish spending that very much characterizes the materialistic outlook of the world today. There is enough of the world out there to be purchased and enchanted by for man to even spare a thought about the wellness of his soul. And so he keeps rolling from gadget to toy, from one version of the toy to the next and from one holiday season to the other, being in a state of constant stupor, drunk by the world- exactly what the Lord recommends he avoid if he wishes to be ready for the end times.
7. Worrying to be abandoned:
34 “Be careful, or your hearts will be weighed down with ——-and the anxieties of life, and that day will close on you unexpectedly like a trap.
For those who manage to escape the lure of materialism, there is the stranglehold of worries- the anxieties of everyday life that keeps them tied down. True, life is hard with the many responsibilities, the bills, the expenses and the unreasonable work hours that leave a pilgrim drained and with little strength to reflect on eternal issues. However, he needs to remember that a Christian life is one where faith becomes the foundation on which life is lived, with dependence on God driving out worries.
8. Walking in the spirit:
36 Be always on the watch, and pray that you may be able to escape all that is about to happen, and that you may be able to stand before the Son of Man.”
Finally the central characteristic of a Christian life- walking in the spirit, that brings enablement to reject the sinful nature, be constantly in touch with God and always be on watch. No better way to be aware of the spiritual realm and when the end of the days does arrive, for one walking in the spirit, it will be no surprise and along with the saints he would indeed say, “Amen, come Lord Jesus!”
- TUNING UP FOR THE END TIMES-1
- FIXING A DATE FOR THE END