By Nathan Jones
How can the Christian find their excitement even in troubling times?
In this "The Truth Will Set You Free" TWave Radio episode, Pastor Vic Batista of Miami's Calvary Chapel Aventura and I will evaluate 2015 so far and discuss what the Bible says we must do to make it right.
Nathan Jones: Pastor Vic, you have the amazing ability to get me excited! Sure, it's true — life's rough. The world's tough, but we can get excited when Jesus Christ is in our life, can't we?
Vic Batista: Absolutely! It's all in the Scriptures, if we let the Scriptures come alive in our lives. We as Christians have to be in the Word. We need to be diligent in our reading, because life becomes just so exciting when we read about God's promises.
Nathan Jones: Exactly, the Bible is filled with prophecy. For example, did you know that when Jesus came at His First Coming that He fulfilled some 300 general prophecies and 109 distinct prophecies? There are 500 verses in the Old Testament and one in every 25 verses in the New Testament that talk about Jesus' Second Coming. So, basically a third of the Bible is Bible prophecy.
God is telling us what we can expect, and pretty much when we should expect it, and what He requires of us to have eternal life. So, praise the Lord, it is so important that we study our Bibles and know the wonders that God has in store for us.
Vic Batista: Absolutely! And, of course, it all is a work of the Holy Spirit. As we look at this passage in Luke 21, we are encouraged to watch therefore and pray. And what a wonderful opportunity we have to pray about the challenging situations happening in our country and around the world. We certainly are not in agreement with the derailed direction our country is moving along, but we are called by God to submit to authority and to pray for those who are in leadership. We should pray for those who are making the laws and pray that the Holy Spirit will change their hearts.
Nathan Jones: Exactly, prayer makes a difference. For example, one of the wonderful things that has happened recently I was reading is about the new Congress that just got in earlier this year. Of the new Congress members, some 82% who were elected claim to be born-again, believing Christians. Whether they are or not, we'll see by their actions. But it seems like that a Christian wave has swept into the government. Whether the new Congress makes a big difference or not, I don't know, we'll have to continue to watch. Only the Lord could be behind such a swing, because God says that He is behind all things involved in world politics.
While I hope that we'll see a restraint put on government, mostly one is needed on society, because the government is made up of just people whom we elect. If we are evil, then our government will be evil. We really need to see the love of Jesus Christ sweep through the country providing a new morality. We must turn from our sin and so see our country turn their lives back to Jesus Christ. It is our only hope for our country to survive, at least up until the Tribulation.
Vic Batista: Nathan, I agree with you. I believe that is why Christians need to stand in the gap. I believe that 2015 can be an amazing year. But, it's really up to us to pray for our leaders and our government. If there is any hope for America, it is we Christians standing in the gap and praying.
Nathan Jones: Exactly! That reminds me of 2 Thessalonians 2:7 about the Restrainer. When Jesus comes to Rapture the Church, He is going to remove a restraining influence that has been holding back all the evil and craziness of mankind. You think it is crazy now, well it is going to get really crazy during the Tribulation! But, right now, there is the restraining influence of God on this earth. I believe that is the work of the Holy Spirit through the Church. When Jesus takes the Church off this earth at the Rapture, that is when the restraining influence will also be gone.
For now then, we Christians are to be the restraining salt and the light of this earth. We are the avenue that Jesus Christ uses to reach people. It's very important then that we don't as Luke 11:33 says, "hide our light under a bowl." We don't speak worthless, unsalty talk. No, instead we need to be making a difference in this world.
Vic Batista: God is achieving some amazing things through His Body — Christians. He is pouring out His Holy Spirit, and we need to be able to be those individuals who are ready for the Lord's return at any moment.
Nathan Jones: And so, live holy lives in anticipation of the Lord's return. Let us be the overcomers of this world.