Even the most optimistic among us would have a hard time denying that the world is fast descending further and further into chaos. To those with spiritual foresight and intuition, those that have learned by fellowship with the Father to hear his voice, it is undeniable that harsh and difficult times are on the horizon.
If it were only the opinion of a handful without any Biblical basis, it would be easy to dismiss the warnings as mere rants coming from the mouths of delusional men who harbor apocalyptic fantasies. As we study the Word however, the portrait it paints concerning the times we live in confirm our darkest suspicions that in fact we are not in for a season of prosperity and revival but one of hardship and great global turmoil.
As I was reading my Bible I happened upon a verse, which gave me great comfort. It is an encouragement uttered by Christ, intended exclusively for His followers, those that have not only found the truth, but also live the truth. Since we are not of the world, we cannot view current events through the eyes of the world, nor react to them as the world does.
Luke 21:28, “Now when these things begin to happen, look up and lift up your heads, because your redemption draws near.”
In order to understand the depth of this encouragement, we must know the context in which it was spoken. Before speaking these words, Christ shared what the world would be like before his return, everything from distress of nations, to signs in the sun, to men’s hearts failing hem for fear and expectation of the things which are coming upon the earth.
It is easy to look up, and lift our heads when all is well, when the seas are calm, and blessings abound, but we are told by Christ to look up when all is dark, the future seems bleak, and by human reckoning there seems to be no way out of our predicament.
When Christ speaks the words ‘look up’ they were not intended for the world, for the world does not have spiritual eyes, it cannot behold his countenance, nor feel His presence. Now the logical question that remains to be asked, if in these times right before His return we are instructed to look up, if in these times of turmoil, strife, destruction, and natural disasters the children of God are told to lift their heads, would it not be logical to ascertain that we will be here?
There are numerous avenues we can pursue just from this single verse in the Bible, and we can have an entire study on the end times, the Christian’s role in the end times, where the children of God will be, and what our duties before God are, but I would like to stick to the central issue, for it is of preeminent importance in our lives.
If we believe that our redemption will come by way of the preparations we’ve made in a physical sense, if we believe our redemption will come because we’ve stored up food, and we’ve built bomb shelters, we are deluding and deceiving ourselves. There is only one place from which our redemption will come, and that is Christ, and Christ alone.
The beauty of the words Christ spoke is that they are deeper than they seem at first glance. We can read into these two words, ‘look up’ and understand that we are being instructed not merely to lift our heads, not merely to gaze toward the heavens, but to place our trust in those things not of this earth. We have become a generation that revels in the trappings of material crutches. We say we believe, we trust, but our actions betray our true heart. Even though with our lips we say we trust God, we hoard and amass for the coming dark days, as though the things we store up will somehow save or spare us. There is only one place where we will find safety, one place where we will find the long promised redemption, and if our gaze is fixed upon the things of this earth, if our hearts are still tethered to the material rather than the spiritual, we will discover, sooner rather than later, that nothing we were able to do on our own will be enough to spare us the heartache and distress.
If we are God’s and He is ours, then our trust in Him must be complete, we must look up, and know that He is there, aware of our hardships and trials, ready and able to rescue us at the appropriate time.
If we open our eyes, we will see. If we open our hearts we will receive. If we open our minds we will be enlightened. Though heaven and earth may pass away, His words will by no means pass away.
With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.