World on the Edge
As the world's profits crumble, listen to the hebrew prophets.
Thursday, October 09, 2008
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Take for instance the hebrew prophet Moses, who by faith "...refused to be called the son of Pharaoh's daughter; Choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season; Esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt: for he had respect unto the recompence of the reward. By faith he forsook Egypt, not fearing the wrath of the king: for he endured, as seeing him who is invisible."
What is the reward the Moses could see? It tells us in Hebrews 11:14, that the faithful were seeking a country. In verse 13 the reward is termed "the promises". These are the promises made to the fathers, Abraham, Issac and Israel. The Apostle Paul calls them the "Hope of Israel" in Acts 28 and in Acts 26 the hope of the twelve tribes. The hebrew fathers did not receive them, however they saw them through the eye of faith and they were persuaded of them and embraced them. They fell in love with the Hope of Israel.
The Lord Jesus Christ taught us:
"Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also." (Matthew 6:19-21)
The question that Jesus brought us to think about is, where are the affections of my heart? On my treasure on earth; or, have I set my affections on the Hope of Israel reserved in heaven with the king of Israel? Today as the riches of the world go up in smoke, we are forcefully reminded what can easily happen to treasures upon earth. As humans we always fall into the trap of thinking "all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation." We simply do not have a very good ability to see that things will not continue the way they are, but that they will surely change. The ability to see the change that will sweep the earth comes from faith.
Now faith is the substance or firm confidence, the assured expectation of things hoped for. Faith is the evidence of the unseen promises of God - the testimony concerning the age to come (Hebrews 11:1). Faith makes the Hope of Israel a rock solid reality that we can see and be assured of. Through faith we can walk in the restored kingdom of Israel in all it's glory and splendor, we can rejoice with the Jew under the reign of the long awaited Messiah, we can survey the wondrous temple, observe the nations coming to learn the word of God and be awed by the king in all his beauty. Through faith we can eat bread at his table in his kingdom. Without faith in the promises it is impossible to please God. Impossible. (Hebrews 11:6) In order to believe God a man must believe his word and obey it. In Romans 8:24 it says we are saved by hope. Not just any hope. The margin of my Bible shows the Greek is definite here. We are saved by the hope. The Hope of Israel. Let us not lose sight of what we do believe in. We are not saved by what we don't believe in. An atheist does not believe in immortal souls wafting off - but this will not help him. We are saved by believing and obeying the gospel, the hope of the twelve tribes of Israel. Through faith we understand that the present is passing, that todays world will change and vanish away.
Today a wind of change is blowing over the world's economies. It is terrifying how quickly billions of dollars can evaporate into nothing. The Economist says a global recession is almost certainly on the way. The article entitled "Bad, or worse" goes on to say: "According to the IMF’s most recent World Economic Outlook, published on Wednesday, the world economy is “entering a major downturn” in the face of “the most dangerous shock” to rich-country financial markets since the 1930s." Shocking. Iceland is on the verge of bankruptcy and who is helping them? Well that would be Russia. The National Post reports: "Russia bails out Iceland with US $5.4 billion loan". Where will this all lead? It could be another step to the ascendancy of Russia and the subjugation of Europe.
Another headline that caught my eye this week from the Associated Press: "Russia's Jerusalem land claim worries Israelis." The article reports: "The Russians are coming to downtown Jerusalem, reclaiming ownership of a landmark with the approval of the Israeli government..."
And just tonight the Jerusalem Post is reporting that Israel Airforce Jets were scrambled to the northern border, where an aircraft had infiltrated the Israeli airspace from Lebanon. The IDF is on alert and is concerned Hizbullah may attack.
Come back next week and keep your eyes on the prophets! This has been David Billington for the Bible in the News at www.bibleinthenews.com.
Printed: Thursday, October 09, 2008
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