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    “See to it no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ” (Colossians 2:8).

    « Are We Pre-Forgiven? The Salvation Message | Violent Mystics? Mystics Old and New: Love, Power, and the Glory: Part 4 of 4 »

    The Day of the Lord

    In just a few hours, my social media outlets have seen a noted spike of interest from Christians who seem positively excited about the apparent war between Russian, Syria, USA, and Iraq. Supposedly, this is a definite sign of the end-times, and good Christians everywhere are encouraged to pray for Christ's return.

    What the Bible says:

    Amos 5:18
    "Woe to you who long for the day of the Lord! Why do you long for the day of the Lord? That day will be darkness, not light. 19 It will be as though a man fled from a lion only to meet a bear, as though he entered his house and rested his hand on the wall only to have a snake bite him. 20 Will not the day of the Lord be darkness, not light—pitch-dark, without a ray of brightness?"

    The context of this passage does not refer to "end-times" as Christians know it, but a judgment against Israel. Still, the point is not to pray for war. I know Christians would say they are not praying for war, but Christ's return--the end of all things, ultimate justice, and a final reign of peace. I understand that desire; I think all people are tired of war, violence, poverty, injustice, disease, and other ills and sins that plague humanity. 

    But dear Christians, we should NOT pray, "Come, Lord Jesus". It was His long-suffering mercy that brought us to Him, why would we wish Him to hurry and cut off the chances of others to receive grace? We are saved whether He comes or not. In our longing to see real peace restored, let us not make the same mistake as Jonah, who ran from God, rather than preach His impending justice to a foreign nation who did turn to God after hearing Jonah's words. 

    "But to Jonah this seemed very wrong, and he became angry. He prayed to the Lord, “Isn’t this what I said, Lord, when I was still at home? That is what I tried to forestall by fleeing to Tarshish. I knew that you are a gracious and compassionate God, slow to anger and abounding in love, a God who relents from sending calamity. Now, Lord, take away my life, for it is better for me to die than to live.”

    But the Lord replied, “Is it right for you to be angry?”...should I not have concern for the great city of Nineveh, in which there are more than a hundred and twenty thousand people who cannot tell their right hand from their left —and also many animals?” (Jonah 4:1-4 and 4:11)

    The Bible describes "The Day of the Lord" in frightening terms replete with desolation, blood, death, darkness, thunder, and fire with no nation left unjudged (see Joel, Zephaniah, and Ezekial). Christians, why would we want this for our unsaved neighbors, coworkers, and church members?

    Rather, we should be telling those God puts in our way, "For I take no pleasure in the death of anyone, declares the Sovereign Lord. Repent and live!" (Ezekial 18:32)

    "With many other words he [Peter] warned them; and he pleaded with them, “Save yourselves from this corrupt generation.” 41 Those who accepted his message were baptized, and about three thousand were added to their number that day." (Acts 2:40-41)

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