We’ve been sitting in this pot for awhile now. I’m referring to this world we live in, but my reference isn’t limited to those who are over a certain age– this situation we’re in now, it’s been a slow boil for all of humanity.
We’re like the boiling frog who didn’t know he was in danger. You see, if a frog is suddenly put into boiling water, it will jump out, but if the frog is put in cold water which is then brought to a boil slowly, it will not perceive the danger and will be cooked to death.
And like I said, we’ve been sitting in this pot for awhile now.
Jesus said, “All these are the beginning of sorrows. Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and kill you, and you will be hated by all nations for My name’s sake. And then many will be offended, will betray one another, and will hate one another” (Matthew 24:8-10).
What a sad revelation: “…these are the beginning of sorrows.” You mean it’s only going to get worse? Yes. Jesus was speaking of the last days. The Bible has much to say about it. But even with all our studying and awareness, we’ve been in a slow boiling pot so it’s no wonder we’re still surprised.
Jesus was speaking to His disciples. We can carry this thought forward with the understanding that we are now His disciples. He’s talking to us. He’s talking to Christians. Many Christians will be offended. Many Christians will betray one another. Many will hate one another.
There have been many signs of this slow boil, but the one that has caught my attention the most is the criticisms. Wow. I mean, it’s everywhere — criticism of churches, criticism of God’s Word, criticism of pastors and leaders, criticisms of outreaches, lack of outreaches, whether we should or should not paint the walls, add lights to a stage or serve coffee in the foyer.
Why so much criticism? Because we’ve been sitting in this slow boiling pot and unaware that the enemy is turning us against one another.
“Then many false prophets will rise up and deceive many” (Matthew 24:11). I used to think this was talking about cult leaders with great followings (and it could definitely mean that) but I’ve come to realize we have quite a few “internet preachers” on social media with an agenda of opinion that often contradicts the whole counsel of God’s Word. They have day jobs in other professions but feel they need to “preach” their view of “this world going to pot” and why — not realizing they’ve been sitting in the same boiling water that has deceived many.
“And because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold” (Matthew 24:12). You’d think the frog sitting in a slow-boiling pot would have a warm heart, but it’s quite the opposite. The hotter the outside, the colder we become inside. Jesus said love is the replacement of the law of Moses. It’s our new covenant. And by simple definition, law-less-ness is a lack-of-the-law. Well, if the new law is LOVE, then law-less-ness is a lack of love.
Jesus said in the last days lawlessness, our lack of love, will abound, and the result will be a cold love. And many will fall prey to it’s demise. Why? Because people are no longer shocked by murders, riots, insults, bitterness, and foul talk. He warned us: lawlessness will abound and become the norm and our love will grow cold.
“BUT he who endures to the end shall be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come” (Matthew 24:13-14).
So what do we do? We can’t get out of the pot. The world is slowly boiling. BUT we can endure to the end by maintaining our love no matter what. Forgive often. Own your rebellion when you get caught up with the crowd and repent. Choose love. Choose to be patient and kind. Choose God’s way of doing things:
Love endures long and is patient and kind; love never is envious nor boils over with jealousy, is not boastful or vainglorious, does not display itself haughtily. It is not conceited (arrogant and inflated with pride); it is not rude (unmannerly) and does not act unbecomingly. Love (God’s love in us) does not insist on its own rights or its own way, for it is not self-seeking; it is not touchy or fretful or resentful; it takes no account of the evil done to it [it pays no attention to a suffered wrong]. It does not rejoice at injustice and unrighteousness, but rejoices when right and truth prevail. Love bears up under anything and everything that comes, is ever ready to believe the best of every person, its hopes are fadeless under all circumstances, and it endures everything [without weakening]. Love never fails [never fades out or becomes obsolete or comes to an end]. (1 Corinthians 13:4-8, AMP).
Why so much criticism? Because this is last-days-living. But I can’t emphasize this truth enough: You cannot choose for others — but you can choose for yourself. Rise above it.
You are the righteousness of God in Christ. Let’s live in this truth.