Observations from today’s readings and today’s S-WOD, Tuesday, 1 December 20:
Hosea 9:7 — The days of punishment have come; the days of recompense have come; Israel shall know it. The prophet is a fool; the man of the spirit is mad, because of your great iniquity and great hatred.
One pattern in the Bible is when people or nations turn away from God in sin, they eventually lose the spiritual sense to even understand their condition. God’s faithful prophets are considered fools and are rejected while the people turn to false prophets who truly are fools and who encourage them along the path to their destruction.
False prophets tell everyone what they want to hear; they proclaim ‘peace’ (with God) when there isn’t peace (Jeremiah 6:11, 8:11; Ezekiel 13:10); they claim sin isn’t sin; they make rules that are not from God with the intent of transferring righteousness, glory, honor, and authority from God to people; they muddy the waters of God’s word in order to make room for sin and to promote their own agendas (Ezekiel 34:18-19; Jeremiah 2:13). They are disobedient and do not display the ‘fruit of the spirit.’ (See Galatians 5) False prophets and false congregations consider themselves ‘spiritual’ and have influence over the unfaithful but lack any real spiritual power (2 Timothy 3:1-5).
I wonder what messages were being delivered by talented preachers during Noah’s day right before God flooded the earth. What do you suppose was going on in the ‘churches’ of Sodom and Gomorrah prior to the destruction of those cities? Concerning his Second Coming Jesus warned, “as were the days of Noah, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. For as in those days before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day when Noah entered the ark, and they were unaware until the flood came and swept them all away, so will be the coming of the Son of Man.” (Matthew 24:38-39) “Likewise, just as it was in the days of Lot—they were eating and drinking, buying and selling, planting and building, but on the day when Lot went out from Sodom, fire and sulfur rained from heaven and destroyed them all— so will it be on the day when the Son of Man is revealed.” (Luke 17:28-30)
The vast majority will be completely unaware of the reality of the Great Judgment Day when it arrives. Now is a good time to be a ‘fool’ for Christ. “Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.” – Mark Twain
- Matthew 24:44 — Therefore you also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.
- Matthew 24:30-31 — Then will appear in heaven the sign of the Son of Man, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. And he will send out his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.
- 2 Corinthians 5:10 — For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may receive what is due for what he has done in the body, whether good or evil.
“Cross” Fit S-WOD (Spiritual Workout of the Day) – 1 December 20: Proclaim the truth in love today and the Gospel with a sense of urgency for those who don’t know Christ (John 3:18; 2 Peter 3:9). Be willing to suffer rejection, even persecution for the sake of the lost.