I am afraid that there are lots of Christians that are confused about our situation these days. I have seen and heard lots of responses from believers who disagree that we are in the last days or who can’t wrap their minds around the threat of God’s judgment on this nation. Of course, the age-old argument that all of us have heard – that people have been preaching about the last days for 2000 years and nothing has happened – is perhaps the most used and abused statement I have ever heard. The typical response to that argument is also overused and abused. Every time I hear a preacher say (and I have said it myself) that we are at least 2000 years closer than when Jesus talked about the last days, I just want to cringe. That one statement does nothing to alleviate their concerns. So instead of using the tried and true (read that as trite and worn-out), let’s tell them why we believe that we are living in the last days. As I have been preaching, Jesus told us the signs to look out for in Matthew 24 & 25: deception, destruction, devastation, and persecution of His people. Of course, the argument again is that these things have been going on for 2000 years, but we have to understand that Jesus’ focus was on Israel. Israel is the epicenter of these signs, and until 1948 when Israel became a nation again, the signs could not be valid. Now they are. For more information, go to our website, www.southsidebaptist.net, and watch the video of our services on July 19, July 26, and August 2.
The other aspect that I want to mention is about judgment. People are actually saying that God cannot judge America because not everyone is guilty of the sins that pastors are talking about these days. Not every woman has had an abortion. Not every American supports same-sex marriages. “We are not guilty,” they say. If this were a valid argument, no nation in history would ever face God’s wrath. You see, there are always people who do not participate in the evil no matter how corrupt the society may be. Many even stand against the wickedness that takes place. However, there comes a time when God says, “I’ve had enough.” In Old Testament Israel, there was always a righteous remnant, but judgment still fell. In the United States, there are many who strive to live holy lives and stand against those who would lead our nation down the path of immorality, but there comes a time when, as the Bible says, our “cup of iniquity” overflows and God has had enough. Judgment comes. The righteous suffer with the wicked even though God walks with us through His judgment. And the truth is that we truly don’t deserve to be exempted from God’s actions because we, too, are sinful and have not done what we should to overcome evil in our own lives, families, churches, or cities. In fact, that is why the Bible says that judgment begins in the house of the Lord. We who know the Truth are held to a higher standard than those who do not.