Stressed Out

  We live in a time of change, conflict, materialism, fears and worries. Wars and rumors of war, failed peace talks, and mother nature brewing up storms, earth quakes, and volcanic eruptions like never before. A time when people no longer communicate face to face, but rather text to text. Respect has dwindled towards the elderly, and the younger generation wants everything without earning it. If we go back to the book of Daniel, we will find that he foresaw a time like this in the end.
But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased. (Daniel 12:4). Daniel was instructed to seal the book till the end times. A time when many will run to and fro: Not only physically and mentally, but spiritually also. How could this be? How does this apply spiritually? Well, they bring about the great apostasy. (a falling away from the church because of lack of truth). And knowledge shall be increased: Yes we live in a time of awesome technology, but we also live in a time of "wicked" knowledge and false teachings. Look at all the false teachings, false doctrines, and traditions of men being taught in churches today. Lets take these topics one by one and see what the scriptures reveal.

Change: Back in the old testament when they built the tower of Babel God would say: And the LORD said, Behold, the people is one, and they have all one language; and this they begin to do: and now nothing will be restrained from them, which they have imagined to do. (Genesis 11:6). The people are united and speak the same language. Nothing will be impossible for them that they imagine to do. (Exodus 31:1-5), the ability given to man for all kinds of crafts. Today change is amounting so fast that we cannot keep up with it. Anything you can imagine has come true as the technology grows day by day.

Conflict: The war between people and nations. No one wants to get along anymore. Neighbor against neighbor, brother against brother, right against left, gay against straight, country against country. "I believe the later is the one people fear the most." Here is an end time prophecy from the book of Zechariah when the nations fight against Jerusalem. It's real close my friend! "Fear of nuclear war." And this shall be the plague wherewith the Lord will smite all the people that have fought against Jerusalem; Their flesh shall consume away while they stand upon their feet, and their eyes shall consume away in their holes, and their tongue shall consume away in their mouth. (Zechariah 14:12). The Lord will send a plague on all the nations that fought against Jerusalem. "Tested by fire, because God is a consuming fire." He can warm the hearts of His people while He consumes the rudiments of evil. (Revelation 18:8). And it shall come to pass in that day, that a great tumult from the Lord shall be among them; and they shall lay hold every one on the hand of his neighbour, and his hand shall rise up against the hand of his neighbour. (Zechariah 14:13). This word "tumult" Strong's H4103 is "confusion or uproar." They will be in confused and in an uproar, terrified and stricken by the Lord, and neighbors will rise against each other. (Ezekiel 38:21), Like I said before, it will even be brother against brother.

Materialism: We could talk about this one all day. Why have we become so materialistic and greedy? "Always trying to keep up with the Joneses." Best explained in the book of Timothy. For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows. (1 Timothy 6:10). The love of money and worldly wealth is the first step to all kinds of sin. Always worrying about money because they never have enough. Some have even turned away from God because of it, and because of it, they will have many sorrows. I don't care how you earn your money, when you have more than you need, it can create problems. But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition. (1 Timothy 6:9). Being to wealthy, or your desire for wealth will get you in trouble. People with wealth or who long to be rich soon begin to do all kinds of things wrong to get more money and power. Oh I know you have heard from many pastors (mostly the rich ones), that their is no sin in being wealthy. In some cases maybe not. But in most cases, money will turn people away from the truth of God. (Satan loves money)!

  Gods way is a little different than what is in the minds of the wealthy. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. (1 Timothy 6:7). Forget worldly goods, you can't take them with you. The only thing that counts is your good works. (Revelation 19:8). And having food and raiment let us be therewith content. (1 Timothy 6:8). We should be well satisfied if we have a roof over our head and food to eat. God will always take care of His own. You can be rich in God's blessings that usually do not involve money. Forget about all that "get prosperous from God" preachers; their only concern is how to get into your pockets. Wealth gotten by vanity shall be diminished, but he that gathereth by labor shall increase. (Proverbs 13:11).  

Fears and Worries: Mainly our concern about the future. Let's go back to the book of proverbs and see what the bible says about fear and worries.

  Trust in God not man, and He will show you the way. Don't be wise in your own eyes, but revere the Lord and stay away from evil things. This will be healthy to your body as well as the spirit. (Proverbs 3:5-8). This makes you a stronger person both physically and mentally to help keep you free from fears and worries. It makes you a better person towards others.

  Be merciful to others, cruelty damages the soul and flesh leading to more fear. (Proverbs 11:17). A good heart is like medicine to the soul, but a broken spirit dries the bones. (Proverbs 17:22). In other words, a healthy body and spirit will give you less fear and worries. Does this mean we will not have tribulation in our lives. Not at all... With a little faith, we can have peace with God through Jesus Christ. (Romans 5:1). We can glory in tribulations, because tribulation teaches us patience. (Romans 5:3). Patience leads to experience, and experience leads to hope. (Romans 5:4).

  Fear and worries are not from God. For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind. (2 Timothy 1:7). God did not give us the spirit of fear, but of power. Sound mind is one who uses common sense. Better yet, you can put all your fears and worries on God. Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you. (1 Peter 5:7). Give all your worries and cares to God and He will handle it. So, why worry? Christ would tell us: Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid. (John 14:27). Jesus would leave us at this time with a special gift. The gift of "peace of mind" that the world cannot give. Christ is "The Prince of Peace." (Isaiah 9:6). So, He is telling us not to be troubled or afraid. (John 14:1). Believe and trust in Him (not man), and you might not be so stressed out.

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Keep The Faith,
Bart