Desperate Times Call for Desperate Believers
by Michael A. Asher
The times we are living in are very tumultuous and filled with spiritual discord. Spiritual warfare rages daily and only those who are founded on the Rock of Christ will be able to withstand the enemies of God. Our mission, as believers, is to go and make disciples of those who are lost and separated from God. We are to share the good news of the gospel with those at risk of ending up in Hell forever. To do this, we must be bold enough to stand for the truth—regardless of the opposition and persecution we may face. Those whose faith is lacking in the knowledge and discernment of the Word of God will fall away and will be unable to be bold enough to stand firm when needed. The Bible vividly describes the times we are now living in:
“But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God—having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people” (2 Timothy 3:1-5, NIV).
This fallen world is overflowing with those opposed to the Word of God; the enemies of our Lord literally will hate you because they first hated Christ. Even though your decision to follow Jesus and accept him as Savior has saved you from eternal separation from God in Hell, the enemies of Christ will still relentlessly attack you in an attempt to prevent your witness from persuading others to believe in him. We must be bold in our faith to silence the demonic voices trying to convince us to keep our testimonies to ourselves or to doubt the assurance of our own salvation. The lost desperately need the good news of Christ!
Do you have the courage to speak out against what you know to be wrong, even if no one else stands with you? If your walk is with the Lord and the Holy Spirit dwells within you, what do you have to fear? If you continue on the path God has chosen for you, even if you experience difficulties, hardships, or persecution defending the gospel, you are fulfilling God’s will for your life. God himself paves the way for you to accomplish his mission through your willingness to follow him. You have absolutely no reason to fear anything. The future God has promised to you is glorious indeed! If God is for you, who can be against you?
When our faith is first born, we choose to trust in God’s promises and rely on them for our eternal future. As our faith matures, through life experiences we learn the truth in the promises of a holy God who cannot lie. Step by step, decision by decision, our faith grows with each choice made to place our trust in God’s plan and not our own. The walk of faith for a Christian is one filled with spiritual conflict between the carnal human mind and the spiritual heart for the Lord. We can often feel as if we are taking two steps forward and one step back, but we must persevere and endure until the end because the eternal rewards will be more than worth it in the ultimate outcome. At the moment we accept Christ as our Savior, the Holy Spirit is sent to dwell within our hearts to begin the process of bringing our faith from its infancy to final maturity. This process takes our entire lives, but the result will be so wonderful that it will be beyond our ability to comprehend.
Trusting Through Trials
The apostle Paul tells us, “This was his eternal plan, which he carried out through Christ Jesus our Lord. Because of Christ and our faith in him, we can now come boldly and confidently into God’s presence” (Ephesians 3:11, 12, NLT).
Every believer can have courage because God is on our side! We can approach him with confidence because Jesus has reconciled us to the Father by the sacrifice he made for each soul who accepts him as his Savior. We are the sons and daughters, the heirs to the kingdom of God. But because we are his heirs, we can also expect to share in the temporal sufferings that come with the territory. In every believer’s life, trials will come. Our faith will be tested. We must be ready when (not if) this happens.
How can you know how you will respond? Can you trust God, even when his promise seems impossible and incomprehensible, as Abraham did? Will you have the patience of Noah as he diligently pursued the purpose God assigned him long before the rains ever came? Will you take your stand in the face of persecution as Moses did before Pharaoh? Will you, like Jesus’ mother Mary, trust with quiet faith in the Word of God while others around you doubt your story? Will you have the faith of Daniel in the lion’s den? Will you respond to the calling of God as the apostle Paul did, even to the point of imprisonment and death? Will you stand firmly against those opposed to God, as Elijah did? Or, will you deny your faith entirely when the test comes?
These individuals were presented with formidable challenges to their faith in God. They were all imperfect human beings, just like you and me. They had doubts and fears, concerns and worries, flaws and weaknesses. The common traits each individual carried were their powerful faith and their unwavering belief in the Word of God. They were able to find within themselves the necessary faith, in spite of the limitations they brought to the fight. Their faith, when partnering with the power of God, was strong enough to overcome their human nature through their willingness to trust God to deliver them. It is God’s power that still works through us to overcome evil and provide evidence of who he is.
Seeking and Saving
Today our world desperately needs believers who are bold in their faith! Each morning, when you breathe in the life that God has provided for you, determine that you will be bold. Make the decision to go out into the world seeking opportunities to stand for Jesus. Whatever you face, the Holy Spirit of God will be there with you, and he will bless you for standing for him.
“On the day I called, You answered me; You made me bold with strength in my soul” (Psalm 138:3, NASB).
“For the Son of Man came to seek and save those who are lost” (Luke 19:10, NLT).
God’s Word reminds us today:
“We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not despairing; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; always carrying about in the body the dying of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body” (2 Corinthians 4:8-10, NASB).
Our time on this earth is finite and short. As the apostle Paul says, “We are not despairing,” but we must be committed to taking desperate measures to share the good news of Jesus to those in desperate need of hope. People today are confused and perplexed, and looking for answers. We have the antidote in Christ, and we must make the most of the days we have left. Dig deep within your soul to discover the mighty warrior for Christ that you were called to be.
Michael A. Asher is a financial controller who has nourished a lifelong love of the Bible by sharing God’s Word through creative writing.