Don’t let your love grow cold! That’s what Satan wants.
Hello Readers, hope all’s well. Time for another Wednesday “bonus” post in the Do Not Fear the End Times series as I continue to clear my backlog of topics.
In Part 9 of this series I wrote about the increasing persecution of Christians that Jesus warned awaits us. Today I’m writing on a somewhat related topic (and somewhat connected to the previous post too). And that would be the warning that “the love of many will grow cold.”
The Love of many Will Grow Cold — Matthew 24:12
First let’s examine the verse. This appears in Matthew 24 during Jesus’ warnings about the signs of His Second Coming. It’s a section of the Gospels that I often write about in this End Times series.
(12) Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold,Matthew 24:12 (NIV)
(12) Sin will be rampant everywhere, and the love of many will grow cold.Matthew 24:12 (NLT)
The End Times will be a nasty time to live through. We all know that, because we’re all living through them now. There’s so much anger, hatred, strife, division, injustice, racism … and more.
It’s a nasty world we seem to be living in. I say “seem” because if you turn off all news media for awhile and interact with people out in the real world, you’ll find things aren’t as bad as they appear on TV. It’s a time of serious division, yes, but with your average person it isn’t as bad as it looks on TV (yet).
The TV media make it look worse because they focus on divisions. So if you watch too much TV news and don’t spend enough time interacting in the real world, you’ll have a distorted view of how our society is right now. One of the best things you can do for yourself during these End Times is to completely disconnect from the news media for good chunks of time. You’ll find yourself less focused on the divisions, ones which may or may not be legit.
Anyway, no one can deny that countries around the world are experiencing major divisions right now. What was once arguing among rivals is getting more spiteful and vicious. It’s very likely that at some point it will all result in a lot of violence. There has already been violence here and there, and lives lost. But I mean widespread violence and many lives lost.
If widespread civil violence comes to pass, even civil wars, then it’s one more sign of the Second Coming. We were told this would happen, in Matthew 24. The correct answer for Christians during this time is to stay out of it. All of it.
None of the divisions coming between people right now are worth fighting for. Especially one’s political beliefs! But all the divisions being pushed on us are meaningless. They’re not worth violating Christ’s commandments for. But before I get into that, there’s something else I want to mention. I’ll come back to this point below.
For now, know that Jesus warned us about the increasingly hostile division and strife we see in our world. It’s likely to only get worse. There is hope though. Whoever endures through this dangerous time will be saved. Enduring means more than surviving though. It also means staying true to the Christian faith and Christ’s teachings, and not giving in to our wrath.
(13) But the one who endures to the end will be delivered.Matthew 24:13 (CEB)
The Horseman of Division
Before I explain that thought, let’s look at the description of the Second Horseman of the Apocalypse in Revelation 6.
(3) When the Lamb opened the second seal, I heard the second living creature say, “Come!” (4) Out came another horse, fiery red. Its rider was allowed to take peace from the earth so that people would kill each other. He was given a large sword.Revelation 6:3-4 (CEB) (Emphasis mine)
Pick whatever translation you like. All versions of Revelation 6:4 state that the Second Horseman of the Apocalypse makes people fight and kill each other.
On a side note, I’ve been reading the Books of Enoch lately (which I talked about in my previous post), and this was a strategy the Archangels used to kill the sons of the Fallen Watchers on the earth. They were made to fight and kill each other, so the Watchers would have to watch them die. The great flood came a bit later.
Maybe God will use the Second Horseman of the Apocalypse in the same way? Who knows.
One thing I’ve wondered about the Second Horseman is whether he’s already active on the earth. The First Horseman is usually called War (though sometimes interpreted as Pestilence). Both of those evils have always been present here on the earth. Mankind has always been plagued by War and Pestilence. In that case, couldn’t the First Horseman have already been with us since the beginnings of human history?
That’s at least possible, even if the apocalypse wars and plagues will be on another level, and much more dire than anything we’ve seen before.
By the same logic, isn’t it possible that the Second Horseman is already active too? Division has always existed, there have been and still are many civil wars around the world. And we also have the increasing divisions of today, of course. So could it be possible that the the Second Horseman is already here? Already active?
Well maybe, maybe not. This is only a question that had crossed my mind a few times. That’s all.
All I want to show with Revelation 6:4 is that the increasing division we see could be linked to the Second Horseman. If there was widespread civil violence and a spate of civil wars I would definitely take that as a sign of the Second Horseman‘s activity.
It’s something to keep in mind as events move forward. Sadly, I think widespread violence is very likely at some point. If it happens, don’t fear. It’s one more sign. One more thing Jesus warned us about. When we see it, we should once again take heart that He will be returning soon.
But as Christians, what we should not do is take part in this violence in any way, on any side or team. We must sit this one out entirely.
Don’t Let Your Love Grow Cold—That’s Satan’s Plan!
The love of “many” will grow cold—don’t let it happen to you! Don’t be one of them! It’s no accident that people are turning on each other more and more. It’s no accident that the divisions between us are growing stronger, that people are starting to give in to their hate.
This is also part of the plan. Satan’s plan, that is. Not only does he enjoy causing division, hatred, and death, he also loves to lead believers astray. In these final days Satan is doing his best to try and trigger Christians into whatever sins he can entice them to. Giving in to hatred—and even worse, taking part in violence—violates what Christ taught us in the Sermon on the Mount.
I wrote about this at length in Part 9. Jesus taught us that we are to turn the other cheek when others hurt us. He freed us from the tyranny of the old Jewish law which was “eye for an eye.”
(38) You have heard that it was said, An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth. (39) But I say to you that you must not oppose those who want to hurt you. If people slap you on your right cheek, you must turn the left cheek to them as well.Matthew 5:38-39 (CEB)
And that’s not all. He also taught us to love our enemies and pray for those who persecute us. When we do that, we act as children of God.
(44) But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you (45) so that you will be acting as children of your Father who is in heaven.Matthew 5:44-45 (CEB)
It goes without saying that fighting (on any side) in any future civil violence completely goes against these teachings. Participating in the divisiveness is also in violation of the teachings. It’s OK for us to argue (debate) with others and correct them, but if we do then we need to do it with love.
The first fruit of the spirit is love (Galatians 5:22). If we’re walking in the spirit with Christ, then we’ll be producing the fruits of the spirit. We’ll be showing love and patience. If we give in to wrath, then we’re walking in the flesh. Then we’re not following Christ.
No matter how badly the divisions get under our skin, no matter how much the rhetoric and insults offend us, we must stay above all this as Christians. We must continue to show people love, patience, and respect. The devil wins if he can wear us down far enough to the point where we play along with the divisions and give in to our wrath.
It’s no wonder why Christ used the phrase “endures to the end” in Matthew 24:13. It’s going to take spiritual fortitude to stay strong in our Christian beliefs all the way to the end of this. It’s only natural, only human that we will get offended by the vicious rhetoric, or that we’ll want to fight back against the future persecution of Christians.
But we have to overcome our human urges. We have to stay strong and accept short-term suffering for the promise of eternal life in paradise. If the devil can get us to indulge our human urges for payback, or to fight back, then the devil can get us to give up our salvation. He can get us to damn ourselves to hell, right at the very end game. Don’t fall for it!
Cultivate spiritual fortitude, and have faith in the promises of Christ. Although the desire for payback is natural, it’s a luxury that we can’t indulge in. Leave payback up to the LORD, resting assured that He will pay people back for their sins if it is warranted (Romans 12:19). Endure injury and insults without retaliating, for Christ’s sake. For the sake of honoring His sacrifice by upholding His teachings.
Don’t engage in any fighting on any side, if it starts up. Don’t go along with what society is doing. Stay above the discord and don’t give in to the seductive temptation of hatred. Remember that there will be no mercy for the merciless (James 2:13).
(13) There will be no mercy in judgment for anyone who hasn’t shown mercy. […]James 2:13 (CEB)
Don’t let your love grow cold! That’s what Satan wants. It’s easy and tempting to give in to hatred. To sow to the flesh. To seek payback for injuries and insults. It’s hard to show spiritual fortitude and turn the other cheek. It’s hard to love our enemies. But we have to do it, because Christ taught us to. We have to endure to the end. We must keep turning the other cheek, even if that means dying for it.
And get ready to go down without a fight in the final days. I wrote about this in Part 9, so you can read more about it there. But Jesus did give us an example of this when the Romans came to arrest Him in the garden. He made it clear that He had the power to kill all the Roman soldiers. He didn’t have to submit to the arrest, but He did anyway. He made it clear that fighting was not the way, even though He would have easily won the fight. The outcome was never in question.
(52) Then Jesus said to him, “Put the sword back into its place. All those who use the sword will die by the sword. (53) Or do you think that I’m not able to ask my Father and he will send to me more than twelve legions of angels right away? (54) But if I did that, how would the scriptures be fulfilled that say this must happen?”Matthew 26:52-54 (CEB)
All this is easier said than done of course. Turning the other cheek isn’t easy, especially if it means rolling over and dying. Going down without a fight. But we have to keep on doing it, all the way to the very end.
It’s Satan’s desire and plan that our love should grow cold. Even when our anger may be justified, if we give in to our hatred then Satan wins and we lose. Jesus warned us of this time of worsening division. Stay strong, and stay above it.
The consequences for letting our love grow cold are too severe. It’s not worth it. Take time to consider the following words from Jesus to the church at Ephesus in Revelation 2. He is warning us that letting our love grow cold will result in judgment and death. So beware.
(3) You have shown endurance and put up with a lot for my name’s sake, and you haven’t gotten tired. (4) But I have this against you: you have let go of the love you had at first. (5) So remember the high point from which you have fallen. Change your hearts and lives and do the things you did at first. If you don’t, I’m coming to you. I will move your lampstand from its place if you don’t change your hearts and lives.Revelation 2:3-5 (CEB)
Stay strong and keep the faith. Resist hatred, don’t let go of love. These are difficult times, no one can deny that. But remember that Christ is coming back soon, to hit the reset button on our planet earth. Every day that goes by gets us one day closer to the end. Don’t give up right at the very end. We’re almost there!
Well that’s all for this week. If you enjoyed today’s post, please be sure to Subscribe using the form below. And please consider Supporting My Blog using the Tip Jar. Any amount is much appreciated!
Until next time, be strong and do good!
Your new best friend in Christ,
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9 comments on “Do Not Fear the End Times Part 13: Division Heating Up, Love Cooling Down”