Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Notes to the Lord:The Days Ahead

2 Timothy 3

[3.1-5] Don’t be naive. There are difficult times ahead. As the end approaches, people are going to be self-absorbed, money-hungry, self-promoting, stuck-up, profane, contemptuous of parents, crude, coarse, dog-eat-dog, unbending, slanderers, impulsively wild, savage, cynical, treacherous, ruthless, bloated windbags, addicted to lust, and allergic to God. They’ll make a show of religion, but behind the scenes they’re animals. Stay clear of these people.

Lord Jesus--This the passage that everyone preaches from when they are unhappy with the current state of events. Lord Jesus, give me wisdom to view the world not from a perspective of gathering darkness because of my own myopic self focus, but let me see the world around me through your eyes of grace.

I know that, regardless of my view of end-times events, we are closer to your return than when Paul wrote these words. Truth be told some of these same character traits have been evident all along during the life of the church. Are they more evident now? That is something that is very hard to evaluate.

What I can be sure of without a doubt is I do not want to be defined by any of these descriptors. Ruthless, bloated wind bags...kind of sums up most of politics right now, but then that might just be my slightly jaded perspective.

[3.6-9] These are the kind of people who smooth-talk themselves into the homes of unstable and needy women and take advantage of them; women who, depressed by their sinfulness, take up with every new religious fad that calls itself “truth.” They get exploited every time and never really learn. These men are like those old Egyptian frauds Jannes and Jambres, who challenged Moses. They were rejects from the faith, twisted in their thinking, defying truth itself. But nothing will come of these latest impostors. Everyone will see through them, just as people saw through that Egyptian hoax.

Lord Jesus-It is almost like Paul is on a rant and once he gets started one thing leads to another and then the thoughts just flow. I wonder if he had specific individuals in mind as he wrote to Timothy? Did Paul the veteran of a thousand church fights have individuals in mind that Timothy had to work with? Lord Jesus--Paul is saying that those who are in this church thing for their own ends will be found out in the end. The results will not stand up to the test of time.

Lord Jesus--Work in this heart, create in me an authenticity that rests not on show but on the reality of your grace. Let that grace shape and mold my life and heart in ways that the test of time only brings into clearer focus and sharper resolution.

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