'CLIP-BOARD' OF GUIDELINES FOR A MODERN WATCHMAN.
See 2 Peter 1:19-21.
In ancient times, when there were no electronic gadgets, nor even clocks, the role of the watchmen was crucial to the whole community he was part of. It was his job to literally watch for incoming visitors, messengers, enemies, and anything unusual so that the people would be alerted to these. In the roster of the night watchman he would be watching for the morning star in order to arouse people to be ready to start the day's work. Only a few citizens would work as watchmen, but all the citizens were meant to watch and respond as was appropriate for them to what the watchman's message was! This is why Jesus said we should all "watch and pray". However God does give some people the time, and the high watchtowers of radio, TV, Internet, letters, etc., to 'man' for Him. And of course, just as all citizens were expected to report anything 'suspicious' in their areas, so now we are being asked the same. Some of us feel a responsibility to adopt this role spiritually, in today's world, especially as we long for the "Coming of the Day". The element of encouragement is perhaps the most vital, as we remember the lovely hymn that says, "weary was our hearts with waiting, and the night watch seems so long, but the Triumph Day is coming and we hail it with a song!" Oh if only it could be really soon!
SO what might be some guidelines for the modern 'watchman'?
ACCEPTING THE ROLE.
One would seek to be really right with God, loving His Word and His people. Willing to consider the whole Word of God, by the Holy Spirit for themselves. It is hard to be different, but we must listen and answer to the above truthfully, not according to some 'great' teacher or preacher, unless the Spirit witnesses with 2 or 3 witnesses they are speaking for God. It is almost an advantage not to have to answer to an organisation, or congregation but speak even a painful truth. This is why we must pray urgently for all preachers and teachers. Jesus warned of false prophets, (even some who are Christians) and some are very plausible! Some are only partly right. There needs to be a willingness to wait sometimes, to be lonely and to question with discernment.
The basic truths of the Word of God are unchangeable, and need to be memorised.
1. God has a plan and a timetable in His heart, climaxing with the coming back of Jesus.
2. The Gospel being taken into all the World is His greatest longing so that some from every 'tribe', and 'ethnic group' (nation), and language will be represented before the Throne. When this has been completed, "the end" will come. A priority to pray for!
3. The 'time of rebellion' is part of God's clearly stated and foreseen result of giving mankind a 'free-will'. It must break his heart, as it breaks ours, for all that is involved in seeing such tragedy! The world is not going to 'get better'. Some, even believe that it is this that God is using to bring many people to Himself and will be the means of purifying His true Church. God loves to turn evil into blessing as in the death of Jesus! But persecution of Christians is also a part of the result of increasing wickedness.
4. The restoration of Israel, is His covenanted promise, geographically, physically, and spiritually. He has restored the Land as a country, the State of people, and will increase the trickle of Messianic Believers to when "all Israel will be saved" and become the Holy nation, He always planned, to be a "blessing on the Earth".
5. God also desires for all His People, true Bible-reading Believers to be one!
WE NEED TO BE AWARE OF THE PROPHETIC FACTS.
This includes all of the above, but an understanding of how it is happening, and what other events are part of His plan, is important, before the coming of Jesus.
1. There will be the 'parousia' - spectacular revealing of a false-messiah, seemingly a 'saviour' at a time of world economic and world-wide disasters. He will be seen to be the answer to the increasing problems of the world, a charismatic leader at just the right time!
2. The appointment of a false prophet - a religious person, able to enforce the philosophy of the One World Government which will be instituted. (Maybe like the Dalai Lama?) This will be made possible by:
a) A gradual coming together of nations, trade and economic alliances, standardisation of rules and ideas with increasingly integrated systems of all kinds, greatly assisted by developing modern technology. Next time you hear of a proposed 'merger' think of this.
b) A world religion of 'inter-faith' systems, that at present may seem different, but gradually an underlying false acceptance of mutual 'values' is coming, all in the name of humanism. These are: false conservation of the planet, anti-racism and worship of other gods such as mother earth and the ‘god within’, while tolerating evils such as drugs, sexual deviation, war and selfish greed- creating many disasters of poverty, sickness and plagues and famine. The 4 'horsemen' of Revelation are on their way!
It is possible that a scenario of total economic disaster will allow terrible anarchy to such a degree that Governments will be desperate to hand over power to a unifying, seemingly strong Leader. This writer believes it will be the result for the world of the regional events as given in Ezekiel 38 & 39. But it will be for the salvation of Israel and the destruction of the anti-god forces, especially Islam. This may be only a few years away but not now.
c) However the attitude that 'the show must go on might give opportunity at some great event - maybe a world sports event- for the grandiose entrance of the false-messiah. Have you noticed the repeated emphasis and almost deification of the 'human spirit' at each of the Olympic & other world games? There was virtually worship of a lighted human form supposedly representing every religion at the last Commonwealth Games.
IN THE IMMEDIATE FUTURE WHAT IS IMPORTANT?
First, above all, the honour of the Name of the LORD our God!
This should be our greatest concern! In the eyes of almost all the world- all of Africa, all of Arabia, all of Asia, it is the 'Christian' Nations* that are at war. Yet they * rightly have a deep concern for the frightful effects of the cruelty in those nations & threats to their own.
IRAN is 1 nation, among others that clearly by all the evidence:
Are supportive of terrorism against Jews and Christians, in league with Al Qaeda., Hizbollah, Hamas, and other terrorist groups.
Is anxious to hold a position of power over millions of its own people whatever the cost and if they had a chance, (even to use or supply their weapons), over not only a neighbour like Iraq, but they hate ‘the WEST’ as does the whole Arab-Muslim world!
They are in the grip of the Evil one called Allah, who hates our Loving LORD God!
Psalm 75. To the tune 'Do not destroy'. A Psalm of Asaph. A song.
We give thanks to You, O God; we give thanks, for Your Name is near;
men tell of Your wonderful deeds.
You say: "I choose the appointed time; it is I who judge uprightly.
When the earth and all its people quake, it is I who hold its pillars firm." Selah.
"To the arrogant I say, 'Boast no more', and to the wicked, 'Do not lift up your horns.' ['strength']
"Do not lift up your horns against Heaven; do not speak with outstretched neck."
NO ONE from the East or the West or from the desert can exalt a man. (Note this!)
But it is GOD who judges: HE brings one down, HE exalts another.
In the hands of the LORD is a cup of foaming wine mixed with spices, [drugs]
HE pours it out, and all the wicked of the Earth drink it down to its very dregs.
As for me I will declare this forever;
I will sing praise to the GOD of JACOB who will cut off the horns of the wicked,
But the horns of the righteous will be lifted up. (May it be so soon, to GOD'S GLORY!)
Secondly, urgent prayer for all GOD'S people involved in the M.E.
1. For the Leaders of the UNO, USA, EU, Britain, Israel, and Arab Nations
2. For all the true Christian men and women in the Forces in the Middle East- Israelis, Americans, British; chaplains, soldiers, sailors, airmen, medical workers, and all in authority at any level. Also media personnel. Purity, with a calm & a clear, godly witness to all around. For separated loved ones far away.
3. For Christians in 18 churches in Iraq and in all the Middle East countries. There are many Messianic Believers in Israel, and brave Arab Christians in Palestine, etc.
4. For all M.E. leaders, political and military. But 'God brings down one and exalts another.' So thank you for reading and praying with us.