Hope in the City

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II Timothy 3:1-5 ERV Remember this: There are some terrible times coming in the last days.  People will love only themselves and money. They will be proud and boast about themselves. They will abuse others with insults. They will not obey their parents. They will be ungrateful and against all that is pleasing to God.  They will have no love for others and will refuse to forgive anyone. They will talk about others to hurt them and will have no self-control. They will be cruel and hate what is good.  People will turn against their friends. They will do foolish things without thinking and will be so proud of themselves. Instead of loving God, they will love pleasure.  They will go on pretending to be devoted to God, but they will refuse to let that “devotion” change the way they live. Stay away from these people!

The last days. What does that mean for us, the ‘laid down lovers’? Those that care more about the Kingdom of God than our own lives?  The Bible says that we will be persecuted and that is going on all over the world right now, even in our own U.S.A.. People want nothing to do with God or the things of God because they just want to do what they want and be who they are. Paul gives us a command in II Timothy 4; Tell everyone God’s message. Be ready at all times to do whatever is needed. Tell people what they need to do, tell them when they are doing wrong, and encourage them. Do this with great patience and careful teaching.

Why must we do this? Why is it so important in this time to stand apart and be separate? Because without God there is no hope, but we have God living in us by way of his Holy Spirit which means, we are carriers of hope and love. When we walk in love and serve others as Jesus would, it causes the flame of hope to burn bright so that they can find us, so they can find God.

And when it’s all done and Jesus returns for us, all of us, we can say with Paul; I have fought the good fight. I have finished the race. I have served the Lord faithfully. Now, a prize is waiting for me—the crown that will show I am right with God. The Lord, the judge who judges rightly, will give it to me on that Day. Yes, he will give it to me and to everyone else who is eagerly looking forward to his coming.

Even so, Lord Jesus come.

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