It is no surprise to hear people say that we are living in trying times. There has been trying times throughout human history. Some times are more trying than others.
Thomas Paine said; “These are the times that try men’s souls.” He was a contemporary of the American Revolution and certainly all would agree that those were trying times indeed. Each one in his own mind sees things relative to their lifespan and gages their assessment thus. This is normal, however.
All this being said, most folks can see there is something unique about the times we presently live in. The world has never seen terrorist activities on the scale that we see today. Wars are a constant staple in the daily news. Weather related upheavals seem to be more frequent and severe than at any other time in recorded history. Crime is rampart and a breakdown of family and society values is evident on every hand. Our governmental process is stagnant and respect for law and order is at an all time low.
Since this is a religious article we will try to put forth a biblical analysis to establish the seriousness of these times. First, in speaking of the last days which we are undoubtedly in, Christ said: “And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. (7) For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places. (8) All these are the beginning of sorrows” (Matt. 24:6-8). Many Old Testament prophets have substantiated these prophecies. The daily news helps us to see their fulfillment.
Jesus identified our times and said these are the beginning of sorrows. One may tend to think if this is the beginning, how much more troublesome will things get?
The worst is yet ahead and is known in Holy Scripture as the great tribulation. Man made problems and natural disasters will increasingly become unbearable. Economic problems will be severe to the point that those fortunate enough to escape death by famine will pay an entire day’s wages for a single loaf of bread. We just think we have seen earthquakes compared to what is to come. All love will vanish from the earth leaving this a place of nightmarish anguish.
Jesus gave us the warning and also a way of escape. He said in Matthew 24:44; “Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.” In Saint Luke’s version He said it this way: “And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares. (35) For as a snare shall it come on all them that dwell on the face of the whole earth. (36) Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man” (Luke 21:34-36).
Those who take proper heed to Christ’s warnings will escape and be raptured safely to Heaven while the awful tribulation will be raging upon this present earth. The tribulation is a form of punishment to the disobedient who have rejected Christ while the opportunity was available. It is known as the wrath of God upon the disobedient. God does not punish those who believed in Him and complied with His commands. They will be rewarded with everlasting peace and security.
This period of time will certainly be the best of times and the worst of times, unlike to a great magnitude what Charles Dickens meant when he coined this phrase in his day. It will truly be the best of times to Gods people who have been faithful to Him unto the end. And also, it will be the worst of times for those who are left behind because of their rejection of God’s Word.
Each individual determines his own fate. Don’t let the cares of this life cause you to be overtaken in the snare of the deceitfulness of sin and cause you to miss out on an eternity of joy and happiness. When Christ returns on that great day to take His children home, you will not regret living for Him and being ready to go back with Him.