Why do turmoil and conflict continue to happen in our world, and most importantly, what is our position as Christians? How are we instructed to respond during times like this?
What does the Bible Say? In Luke 21:9, Jesus said, “But when you hear of wars and commotions, be not terrified: for these things must first come to pass: but the end is not by and by.” (KJV).
- The International Standard Version reads, “When you hear of wars and revolutions, never be alarmed, because these sort of things must take place first, but the end won’t come right away.”
- The Living Standard Version reads, “And when you may hear of wars and uprisings, do not be terrified, for it is necessary for these things to happen first, but the end [is} not immediately.”
These are the words of Jesus. Notice two things Jesus said in connection with world events. When you hear of these things, realize that these things MUST happen. When Jesus uses the word MUST, we can know that God foresaw these things. They are a part of what will take place before Jesus comes back. In other words, when you hear about these things, know this: Jesus said they would happen.
Why must these things happen? It is the result of the World System. Eph. 2:2 – Wherein time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worked in the children of disobedience. (KJV)
God’s Word says, “You followed the ways of this present world (order) and its spiritual ruler. This ruler continues to work in people who refuse to obey God.”
In 2 Cor. 4:4, Paul instructs us that God is not ruling the nations. Paul says Satan is the god of this world or the god of this world system; Satan is ruling this world system.
In Luke 13:1-5, Jesus gave us the answer to why bad things happen. Luke 13:1-5 – There were present at that season some that told him of the Galilaeans, whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. And Jesus answering said unto them, Suppose ye that these Galilaeans were sinners above all the Galilaeans because they suffered such things? I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish. Or those eighteen, upon whom the tower in Siloam fell and slew them, think ye that they were sinners above all men that dwelt in Jerusalem? I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.
Jesus said these things happen because of Sin. Sin is the spiritual nature of Satan. When Adam and Eve sinned, the sin nature affected all of God’s creation. The only remedy for sin is the Gospel.
I want to Focus on the second thing Jesus said in Luke 21:9. Jesus said, “when you hear these things, be not terrified, be not afraid, be not alarmed.” (my words)
We must understand that fear is a spiritual force from Satan. Fear affects our emotions, our thinking, what we say, what we believe. Fear opens a door for negative things to control our lives. The good news is that God has built something within our spiritual nature that overcomes fear. 2 Tim. 1:7 – The Spirit God gave us does not make us afraid. His Spirit is a source of power and love and self-control. (ERV) The source of our power – the source of God’s love – the source of self-control (controlling our emotions) comes from the Holy Spirit.
What does the HS do in us? Among other things, He reminds us of the promises of God.
John 14:26 – However, the helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you everything. He will remind you of everything that I have ever told you. (GW)
Philp 4:6-9 – Don’t worry about anything, but pray and ask God for everything you need, always giving thanks for what you have. And because you belong to Christ Jesus, God’s peace will stand guard over all your thoughts and feelings. His peace can do this far better than our human minds. Brothers and sisters, continue to think about what is good and worthy of praise. Think about what is true and honorable and right and pure and beautiful and respected. And do what you learned and received from me—what I told you and what you saw me do. And the God who gives peace will be with you. (ERV)
When we think and act on those promises, the power that is contained in those promises goes into action. Remember Hebrews 4:12 – “For the Word of God is quick and powerful…”(KJV) Notice, God’s Word is alive and full of power.
The Holy Spirit takes the Word of God and makes that word real to your spirit. Those words produce encouragement and hope. Those words produce life and power. That life and power will change you and strengthen you.
Psalm 23 describes the present-day ministry of Jesus. In other words, this Psalm speaks to us right now. This Psalm teaches us how to live in the last days.
Psa. 23:1-6 – The LORD is my shepherd; I have everything I need. He lets me rest in fields of green grass and leads me to quiet pools of fresh water. He gives me new strength. He guides me in the right paths, as he has promised. Even if I go through the deepest darkness, I will not be afraid, LORD, for you are with me. Your shepherd’s rod and staff protect me. You prepare a banquet for me, where all my enemies can see me; you welcome me as an honored guest and fill my cup to the brim. I know that your goodness and love will be with me all my life; and your house will be my home as long as I live. (GNB)
What is our response to all the negative news? Resist worry – resist fear – focus on what God says. When we do that, the power of the Holy Spirit will begin to operate and make what God’s Word says a reality in our lives.
Say this with me – God has not given me a spirit of fear – He has given me a spirit of love and power and a sound mind – The Lord is my shepherd; I will not lack any good thing – God prepares a banquet for me – my enemies can only watch – God fills my cup to the brim – God’s goodness and love surround me and follow me all the days of my life.