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Pointers along the way #31

The pressure to give up
- Jacob Ninan

The Bible mentions that in the last days the devil will be furious, knowing that he has only a short time left (Re.12:12). Through the centuries Christians have felt as though their time was really the last hour. We now feel that this present time could very well be the last few minutes before the coming of the Lord.

Can you feel the fury of the devil coming at you personally, almost forcing you, if possible, to give up your faith in God and to give in to the world? He cannot force us, but that is how we feel. All around us we see many falling away from the faith, and we remember the words of Paul that there would a falling away before Jesus came (2Th.2:3). Even Christian leaders are compromising, and Christian churches are giving in to the philosophies of the world that make the word 'sin' irrelevant. Many are confused because they cannot find true shepherds to guide them, and because they are facing unjust situations beyond their control and complicated problems they cannot handle.

It is in such situations that the word of the Lord becomes relevant to us, that says, "Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal among you, which comes upon you for your testing, as though some strange thing were happening to you" (1Pe.4:12). The Lord calls us to persevere under this trial, which is actually a test of our faith, so that He can finally give us the crown of life (Jas.1:12).

How can we hold on? By holding on to the One we have placed our trust in. His faithfulness is unquestionable. No one who continues to hope in Him will be put to shame (Is.49:23). We may face hardships or earthly disappointments. But we shall see in eternity that He has not caused us to lose out.

It is a test of our faith if we would be willing to bear with earthly sufferings in order to gain eternal blessings. Paul said that if we had only this earthly life, we could as well let ourselves go and live for our desires (1Co.15:32). But Jesus has prepared an eternity for us and He is waiting for us. Let us trust Him.