Thanksgiving for the Kingdom of God
Signs of God’s Kingdom Coming – Part III
Scripture Reading: Matthew 24 3-14
Key Verse: Matthew 24:3
Later, Jesus sat on the Mount of Olives. His disciples came to him privately and said, “Tell us, when will all this happen? What sign will signal your return and the end of the world?”
As we continue to study the signs of the end times, there are some hard days ahead for Christ-followers:
“Then you will be arrested, persecuted, and killed. You will be hated all over the world because you are my followers. And many will turn away from me and betray and hate each other. And many false prophets will appear and will deceive many people. Sin will be rampant everywhere, and the love of many will grow cold. But the one who endures to the end will be saved. And the Good News about the Kingdom will be preached throughout the whole world so that all nations will hear it, and then the end will come.” (Matthew 24:9-14 NLT)
In the USA, we do not see much arrest, persecution, and killing of Christians, but we certainly see it in other places around the world.
Christianity Today has a list of the top fifty countries where most dangerous to follow Jesus (https://www.christianitytoday.com/news/2021/january/christian-persecution-2021-countries-open-doors-watch-list.html). This same article reports that persecutors kill thirteen Christians every day because of their faith worldwide.
The inspiring news about this is that persecution is not stopping the growth of Christianity. 309 million Christians are living in these dangerous counties, up from 260 million Christians the year before.
God is gives strength and courage to all those who choose to follow Him. As Jesus said, “But the one who endures to the end will be saved”.
This certainly should challenge us who have so little real persecution now to take this time to grow strong in the Lord and be ready for whatever comes.
According to Jesus, the final sign of the coming end is when all nations have heard the Good News of the Gospel.
According to East-West (https://blog.eastwest.org/what-is-an-unreached-people-group), there are places in South Asia, the Middle East, and North Africa where the entire population of people have never seen a church, a Bible, or even heard the name of Jesus. This reminds us that we have more to accomplish before the end of the age comes.
What should Christ-followers to prepare for Jesus’s return?
First, keep passionate about following Jesus. Second, pray persistently for the people you know that need Jesus. Third:
Live wisely among those who are not believers, and make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be gracious and attractive so that you will have the right response for everyone. (Colossians 4:5-6 NLT)
Father, remind me to take every opportunity to share Your love with people around me. In Jesus Name, amen.