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God’s Word for You

Luke 21:16-17 more signs

by Pastor Timothy Smith on Wednesday, February 27, 2019

16 You will be betrayed even by parents and brothers, by relatives and friends; and they will put some of you to death. 17 You will be hated by all because of my name.

Listen also to Micah 7:6-7: “For a son dishonors his father, a daughter rises up against her mother, a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law—a man’s enemies are the members of his own household. But as for me, I watch in hope for the LORD, I wait for God my Savior; my God will hear me.” Micah’s point is that Judah is a disgrace because these things are happening, but Jesus’ point is that in the days of the New Testament, from the apostles to us to the very end, these things will keep on happening wherever the gospel is preached. When someone you love does not love Christ, their love for you will be stained by the jealousy of unbelief. They might be cordial, friendly, and even loving. But there will be something missing, and in times of testing, that can cause a tear in the relationship.

Remember that these things are signs that the end of the world is approaching. Obadiah said, “The day of the Lord is near for all nations” (Obadiah 15), and Zephaniah said, “The great day of the Lord is near—near and coming quickly” (Zephaniah 1:4). These signs help us to remember what’s approaching, and to be very careful about the status of our faith. A couple of days ago, when most of the Midwest was caught up in a furious February blizzard, I was attempting to get one of my sons back to college after a weekend at home. We tried on Sunday, but even though the college is just 30 miles away, we couldn’t travel more than ten miles before we had to turn around and come home. The next morning we tried again, and all the way, about every seven or eight miles, there was a car stuck in the snow on the side of the road. We counted them on the way there: one (white sedan), two (blue pickup), three (blue SUV), and four (green van). Then on the way home, there was another one, making it five. I carefully putted along at about 40 miles an hour, taking my time, not wanting to add my car to the list. The signs of the end times help us to do that with our faith. We’re going along, as easy as you please in life, and then, watch out! Another sign, to remind us to slow down and take stock of the condition of our faith, like a shepherd knowing the condition of his flocks (Proverbs 27:23), to focus on the goal: to make it home safely to heaven. Be careful out there, and be especially careful with your faith.

In Christ,
Pastor Timothy Smith

Pastor Tim Smith

About Pastor Timothy Smith
Pastor Smith serves St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in New Ulm, Minnesota. To receive God’s Word for You via e-mail, please contact Pastor Smith.


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