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23
Facing The Future With Faith!
July 23, 2012

I don’t want to be labelled a “doom & gloom” preacher, but we need to face reality and recognize that we are living in the last days! The “signs of the times” are everywhere—Jesus said in Luke 21:28, “When you begin to see all these things begin to happen, then look up for your redemption draws near”.

 Last June 20, I wrote a blog on this website called “The Spirit Of Murder” and the news reports involving killings from around the world since then have been alarming. Last week during a time away, Julie and I were sitting in McDonald’s having breakfast when a breaking news item flashed on the screen reporting on a shooting in Scarborough at an annual block party that left two people killed and 24 wounded. What was supposed to be a fun, neighbourhood kids’ party turned into hundreds of people coming from outside of the community. Toronto police chief, Bill Blair, said, “Tonight’s event is unprecedented. This level of violence is something we’ve never experienced. This is the worst incident of gunfire in memory.”

 Shortly after that on July 20th in a movie theatre near Denver, Colorado, 14 people were killed and 50 wounded  by two gunmen while watching the new Batman film, “Dark Knight Rising”. The theatre was packed for the midnight premiere of the new movie and many of those present were teenagers. Murders & shooting rampages are sadly becoming “everyday news” to the point where we have become desensitized to the constant “breaking news” reports.

 War continues to be a major sign as over 17,000 people have been killed in Syria’s 16-month-old civil war involving President Assad’s regime and Syrian rebels. The Arab nations are finally putting pressure on Assad to step down and end the bloody massacre. Tensions and rumours of war continue to rise between Israel and Iran as things heat up in the Middle East.On July 18th in Bulgaria, a suicide bomber murdered five Israeli tourists and wounded 30 others, Iran being suspect in the deed.

 Troubling economic news continues to pour in daily from around the world Here in Ontario, apple farmers have lost about 88% of their crop this year due to a stretch of unusually warm weather in February and March which produced early blossoms that were destroyed by April frost. A tree that would normally produce twelve bushels of apples will yield only one bushel this season. As I write this blog, 80% of America is under a record-breaking drought, including parts of Canada. The U.S. is the #1 exporter of corn and grain and those crops are failing. If drought conditions continue, analysts predict that the aftershocks will drastically affect not only the North American economy, but global economies as well.

 Prince Edward Island is having its worst summer in decades for extreme heat and no rain. For the past three months, rain levels have fallen below 30% of normal amounts with no end of the drought in sight. With the lack of rain the water supply is reaching a crisis point. Potato farmers are facing major crop failure due to the drought. PEI is not alone in the hot, dry weather. The Maritimes, Quebec and Ontario are also reeling from extreme heat and no rain

 No doubt, this is the hand of the Lord shutting up heaven and withholding the rain bringing judgment upon our nation that has forgotten Him and have rejected His Word. Throughout the Old Testament, God always sent a famine throughout the land that affected the bread basket of the people who continually resisted His Word and hardened their hearts towards Him. It is no different today. North America is under the curse of an economic crisis which began in 2009—the U.S. government is now $16 trillion dollars in debt and continues to add one hundred million dollars to that total every single day. At this rate, the U.S. national debt will surpass 23 trillion dollars by 2015—a massive debt that they will never get out from under.

 Jesus warned this generation of things to come in our time before His return. “And there will be signs in the sun, in the moon, and in the stars; and on the earth distress of nations, with perplexity, the sea and the waves roaring;men’s hearts failing them from fear and the expectation of those things which are coming on the earth, for the powers of the heavens will be shaken”  (Luke 21:25-26) The exact description of this end time judgment is portrayed in Joel 2, Matthew 24, Acts 2 and Revelation 6. A time of such fear and horror that will bring lethal heart attacks upon multitudes of frightened people.

 Here’s a four word answer for God’s faithful remnant concerning the coming judgment on our sinful nation—HAVE FAITH IN GOD!“This is the victory that overcomes the world, even our faith” (1John 5:4) I believe, according to Joel 2, the Church and the world will experience one “last call” of the Holy Spirit to repent before Christ returns and all hell breaks loose!

 “And it shall come to pass afterward that I will pour out My Spirit on all flesh; your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions. And also on My menservants and on My maidservants I will pour out My Spirit in those days. And I will show wonders in the heavens and in the earth: blood and fire and pillars of smoke. The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the coming of the great and awesome day of the Lord. And it shall come to pass that whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved” (Joel 28-32)

 Here’s the good news! You will never be defeated when you walk in the Holy Spirit. He is the Spirit of truth! Jesus assured His followers in John 8:31-32 “If you continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free”   Free from what? Free from fear of the future. In a time when men's hearts are failing for fear, we need to remember that we have not been given a spirit of fear but of power, love and a sound mind! Here is the Lord’s unfailing promise to His overcoming Church walking in faith! “In the world you shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world” (John 16:33) Have faith in God and boldly go forward into your destiny!

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