Reflecting on the history of the British Commonwealth and America in the last two hundred years, we see two nations quickly rising to prominence along with unparalleled accomplishments. The British produced a great empire far out of proportion to their population, native wealth, and abilities. Through her commercial power, the United States became the single richest nation that has ever existed. American influence has since exceeded even that of Britain, making English the universal language of business and politics.
Thousands of academic, scientific, and engineering breakthroughs and inventions have sprung from British and American individuals, discoveries which greatly affected the rest of this world. Such power and influence have made both nations feel they have an unlimited reservoir of natural ability and wealth. They even feel a kind of invincibility.
C.S. Lewis once cautioned readers about how easy it is to start using Christianity as a convenience. The center of our faith can easily slip from Jesus sacrifice to preserving marriage, social justice, tithing, or a hundred other things Satan can use to distract us from God. The truth is that everything written down in the Bible, everything we believe as Christians, can be summed up in John 14.
"If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also; from now on you know Him, and have seen Him." Philip said to Him, "Lord, show us the Father, and it is enough for us." Jesus said to him, "Have I been so long with you, and yet you have not come to know Me, Philip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father; how can you say, 'Show us the Father '? "Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father is in Me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on My own initiative, but the Father abiding in Me does His works. "Believe Me that I am in the Father and the Father is in Me; otherwise believe because of the works themselves." Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do, he will do also; and greater works than these he will do; because I go to the Father. – John 14:7-13
Jesus wasn’t just a great teacher, He wasn’t some vague Jewish mystic, He was God. Through His life and death, we are finally reconciled with our Creator. Nothing else, no politics or policy, is more important than that. As long as we remember that, we will remember Jesus.
This way, we're ready to defend our faith and encourage others through God's Word. If we keep our part of the agreement, we will reap the benefits that flow with God keeping His. He promises good health (Exodus 15:26), prosperity (Malachi 3:8-12), children (Psalm 127:3-5), security (Psalm 46), and many other blessings besides His greatest gift, eternal life in His Kingdom (John 17:1-3; Romans 6:23)!
However, our abilities and efforts are a small part of the equation of success. The larger, more determining factor of success is the will of God.
If God wills it, an amateur can create the greatest structure, a poor person can become rich, and a person of average intelligence can come up with the next best thing. And if He doesn’t will it, even the greatest, most sophisticated minds will amount to nothing.
If you are attempting to walk with God, be advised that Satan will not abandon his quest to bring ruin to your life. If you are thinking that he is only interested in “big,” immoral sins, then you are in for a surprise. He is the author of envy, discord, doubt, confusion, and jealousy, along with every form of perversion.
Therefore, the Apostle Paul reminds us to stay alert to God’s Truth. Do not be unaware of the enemy’s schemes against you (see 2 Corinthians 2:11).
We need to be acutely aware of Who is the real Creator. While we may contribute to the world, it is ultimately God Who is responsible for every success and each failure. So, let go of working overtime – and let God take over every time!
“But that which ye have already, hold fast till I come. And he that overcometh, and keepeth My works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations. And he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father.” (Revelation 2:25-27)
In these days there will be more temptation to get away from the Word of God, the blood atonement, and salvation by grace through faith. Churches will be under attack by seducing spirits and doctrines of demons. Here in Jesus’ message to Thyatira He says, “You hold fast till I come.”
Even though it seems to be tough, remember this, dear friend—the saints are going to have their day. Look in verse 26. One of these days Jesus is going to come and rule this world, and we are going to rule with Him.
That is what God is effectively saying in chapters 15 and 16 of Revelation, which describe a specific time during the last three-and-a-half years of the Tribulation period. The Antichrist will have already emerged on the scene. He will have set into place his new global economy and will have his military and his one-world religion.
By this time, people will have made the decision either to follow Jesus Christ and be sealed by the Holy Spirit or to take the mark of the beast and be eternally separated from God. Once a person has taken this mark, there is no turning back. Then God's judgment will come in full force on the Antichrist and all who have followed him. There will be nothing left to say.
If we suffer with Him, we'll also reign with Him (2 Timothy 2:12). We are even going to judge angels (1 Corinthians 6:3). It may not be long before Jesus comes and His millennial reign begins here on this earth. The Bible clearly says that it's going to be a powerful reign (v. 27).
Sadly, there are many who will pretty much die as they have lived: hardened against God. That is why this judgment will come.