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Know and Recognize

August 3, 2017

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Know and Recognize

We all “know”  and  “recognize”  the signs  of the various seasons  of the year  where we live.     There are signs  for a time  to plant — a time  to grow  —  a time  to harvest  —  and a time  for the ground  to rest.     We look forward  to our favorite times  of the year.

It’s good  to be aware  of these signs,  so we can have the assurance  of knowing something  in the future.

But,  Jesus wants us  to “know”  and  “recognize”  some  much more important signs.     We need  to know  when the kingdom of God  is near.     In other words,  this world is surely going  to have a judgment day  and we need  to  “know” and “recognize”  the signs  of this judgment day  a-comin’.     Jesus tells us  in Luke 21  to recognize  the following signs.

There will be people  setting dates  for Judgment Day,  but since no one  really will be able  to figure it out,  we are not  to follow those people.

Nations and kingdoms  will rise up  against each other  in wars  and other disturbances.

There will be earthquakes,  plagues,  famines,  terrors,  and great signs  from heaven.

Christians will be hated  and persecuted.      Family and friends  will betray  their Christian relatives  to have them put  to death.

And,  of course,  all of the unbelievers  will foo-foo the idea  of a Judgment Day  as they mock Christians.     That sounds familiar.

People will rightly say  that all of these signs  have always been going on  and Judgment Day  hasn’t come yet.     But,  we need  to pay special attention  to Luke 21:29-33  where Jesus gives a parable  about these signs  that is worth considering.     He says,

Behold the fig tree,  and all the trees;  as soon as they put forth leaves,  you see it  and know  for yourselves  that the summer  is now near.     Even so you,  too,  when you see these things happening,  recognize  that the kingdom  of God  is near.     Truly I say to you,  this generation  will not pass away  until all things  take place.     Heaven and earth  will pass away,  but My words  will not pass away.

Just as  all these wars,  persecutions,  famines,  etc.  have been going on  for years  —  so too,  the buds are  on the trees  all through the winter.     So,  just as  we see the buds  all winter long,  we will see  the wars,  persecutions,  famines,  etc. all the time  until the Judgment Day comes.

But,  all during the winter  the buds are developing  more each day,  until the day  they finally burst out.     So too,  the evils  —  wars,  famines,  persecutions,  mocking salvation in Christ  —  etc.  are developing  more and more  through the years.

We can think  of how much more evil  has developed  in this world  in the last century.     With the development  of transportation,  TV,  radio,  the Internet,  worldwide trade,  nuclear power,  etc.  —  don’t you think  the “buds”  for Judgment Day  are getting closer and closer  to bursting forth?

No matter what day and age we live in,  we’ve all got  only this one life.     We don’t know  when this life  will be over  for us.     Our “personal” judgment day  could be today  or tomorrow.

So,  just in case  our personal judgment day  will literally be today  or tomorrow,  are we ready  to meet our Maker,  Redeemer,  and Judge?

Jesus gives us  fair warning  to prepare  in Luke 21:34-36.

Be on guard,  that your hearts  may not be weighted down  with dissipation  and drunkenness  and the worries  of life,  and that day come  on you suddenly  like a trap;  for it will come  upon all those  who dwell  on the face  of all the earth.

But keep  on the alert  at all times,  praying  in order that you  may have strength  to escape  all these things  that are about to take place,  and to stand  before the Son  of Man.

What are we doing  to be ready  and on guard  within our hearts  and lives?     We need  to be trusting  in our LORD now,  before we forget how  to trust  and behave  —  before our hearts  get hardened  into the world’s loose lifestyles.

It is only  as we are on the alert  to “know”  and “recognize”  all that is happening  in this world  that we will have  the sensibility  to pray  and live  in God’s Word.

Then,  when we stand  before Jesus,  He will be able  to say,  “Well done,  good and faithful servant.”

That’s when  we will be able  to say,  “Hallelujah!     God’s word  is true forever.     His Word brings  eternal life.”

Love,
Margaret

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A Christian devotional  to glorify  the LORD of lords  and GOD of gods.

Pray for our country.

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The LORD  made this day, let us rejoice  and be glad  in Him.

Psalm 118:24

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The word of the LORD is tried;

He is a shield  to all  who take refuge  in Him.

Psalm 18:30

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Sing for joy  in the LORD,  O you righteous ones;

Praise is becoming  to the upright.

Psalm 33:1

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How blessed are those  who dwell  in Thy house!

They are ever praising Thee.

Psalm 84:4

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Just as a father  has compassion  on his children,

So the LORD  has compassion  on those who fear Him.

Psalm 103:13

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O give thanks  to the LORD,  for He is good;

For His lovingkindness  is everlasting.

Psalm 107:1

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Glory in His holy name;

Let the heart  of those who seek the LORD  be glad.

Psalm 105:3

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Not that I have already obtained it,  or have already  become perfect,   but I press on  in order that  I may  lay hold  of that  for which also  I was laid hold of  by Christ Jesus.

Philippians 3:12

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