The CCN Daily Worship by Pastor Don. Roy Hemingway.
Gooooooooooooooooooooood morning brethren, May the Almighty God of hosts be with you this morning and thank you, for joining us here at ‘The Church of the Christian Nation’ for worship and praise. Let us begin as is our tradition every day here at the Nation, by reading from the word of God. Amen.
Matthew 24. 21st Century King James Version (KJ21)
1 And Jesus went out and departed from the temple, and His disciples came to Him to show Him the buildings of the temple.
2 And Jesus said unto them, “See ye not all these things? Verily I say unto you, there shall not be left here one stone upon another that shall not be thrown down.”
3 And as He sat upon the Mount of Olives, the disciples came unto Him privately, saying, “Tell us, when shall these things be? And what shall be the sign of Thy coming and of the end of the world?”
4 And Jesus answered and said unto them, “Take heed that no man deceive you;
5 for many shall come in My name, saying, ‘I am Christ,’ and shall deceive many.
6 And ye shall hear of wars and rumors 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.
9 Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted and shall kill you, and ye shall be hated by all nations for My name’s sake.
10 And then shall many lose faith and shall betray one another and shall hate one another.
11 And many false prophets shall rise and shall deceive many.
12 And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.
13 But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.
14 And this Gospel of the Kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations, and then shall the end come.
15 “When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place (whoso readeth, let him understand),
16 then let them that be in Judea flee unto the mountains.
17 Let him that is on the housetop not come down to take anything out of his house;
18 neither let him that is in the field return back to take his clothes.
19 And woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck in those days!
20 But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the Sabbath day.
21 For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.
22 And unless those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved; but for the elect’s sake, those days shall be shortened.
23 Then if any man shall say unto you, ‘Lo, here is Christ,’ or ‘there,’ believe it not.
24 For there shall arise false christs and false prophets and shall show great signs and wonders, insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect.
25 Behold, I have told you before.
26 Therefore, if they shall say unto you, ‘Behold, He is in the desert!’ go not forth; or ‘Behold, He is in the secret chambers!’ believe it not.
27 For as the lightning cometh out of the east and shineth even unto the west, so shall also the coming of the Son of Man be.
28 For wheresoever the carcass is, there will the eagles be gathered together.
29 “Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken,
30 and then shall appear the sign of the Son of Man in heaven. And then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of Man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and with great glory.
31 And He shall send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.
32 “Now learn a parable of the fig tree: When his branch is yet tender and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh.
33 So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors.
34 Verily I say unto you, this generation shall not pass till all these things be fulfilled.
35 Heaven and earth shall pass away, but My Words shall not pass away.
36 But of that day and hour, knoweth no man, no, not the angels of Heaven, but My Father only.
37 But as the days of Noah were, so shall also the coming of the Son of Man be.
38 For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ark
39 and knew not until the flood came and took them all away, so shall also the coming of the Son of Man be.
40 Then shall two be in the field; the one shall be taken and the other left.
41 Two women shall be grinding at the mill; the one shall be taken and the other left.
42 “Watch therefore, for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come.
43 But know this, that if the master of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched and would not have suffered his house to be broken into.
44 Therefore be ye also ready, for in such an hour as ye think not, the Son of Man cometh.
45 “Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his lord hath made ruler over his household, to give them meat in due season?
46 Blessed is that servant whom his lord, when he cometh, shall find so doing.
47 Verily I say unto you, that he shall make him ruler over all his goods.
48 But if that evil servant shall say in his heart, ‘My lord delayeth his coming,’
49 and shall begin to smite his fellow servants and to eat and drink with the drunken,
50 the lord of that servant shall come in a day when he looketh not for him, and in an hour that he is not aware of,
51 and shall cut him asunder and appoint him his portion with the hypocrites: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
Lord our God and our Father, we praise you because we are allowed to have community together in the name of Jesus, who has opened our eyes to see you and who has promised to be among us when we are gathered in his name. May our hearts remain without shadow, even when our lives seem to grow difficult and the future looks dark. Protect us whenever we are tempted and have battles to fight. Deliver us. Make us free people who know we belong to you and who are allowed while still on earth to have a share in eternal life. Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
(12) And because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold.
We live in a world today of excessive violence, violence which for the most part, comes from the Satanic cult of Islam. Yet I am reminded that violence comes in many forms and attacks against men, women and children, can take place anywhere at any time. Whenever another atrocity occurs, I am always mindful of that terrible day in 2012, which saw the senseless massacre of twenty kindergarten children at an elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut, plus six other adults. So much time has passed since the Sandy Hook massacre and in many ways, I feel even today, we are still uncertain of the shooter’s motives, although we have been told that he was “troubled” and perhaps “autistic” and “a little weird.” His grade school classmates and neighbours were not surprised at all that his life ended this way. He seems to have been a time-bomb just waiting to go off.
Obviously, his actions in killing so many people, especially children, show no love at all. One would have to be “cold,” without feeling, to do such a thing, just as Islamic supremacists are cold blooded and merciless in their mindless taking of innocent lives. It brings up another verse, II Timothy 3:2, where the apostle Paul prophesies that the last days would be dangerous because “men will be lovers of themselves,” and in verse 3, “without self-control, brutal.” It seems we are seeing this prophecy fulfilled in ever-greater frequency, as people seem to have less and less compunction about terrorising and taking the lives of their fellow human beings under various banners, but more notably the banner of Islam. Under the grip of a merciless narcissism, so many people are losing their humanity, as they deprive the rest of humanity of their lives.
Even so, Matthew 24:12 is not speaking about such people; it is not addressed to the people in the world at large but directly to Jesus’ disciples and their spiritual descendants. How do we know this? Jesus uses the word agape for the love that grows cold. Such spiritual love, godly love, is unattainable by those driven by the spirit of this world. This agape love—the love of God—is the kind that is “poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit[which] was given to us” (Romans 5:5). Jesus, then, is warning His church that the wickedness of the world will increase to such an extent that it would sap the spiritual heat out of His own people, causing their love to grow cold.
This has two major ramifications: 1) People in God’s church will love Him less, and 2) they will love each other less. These are the two recipients of godly love. We will see the effects of this drop in the temperature of our love in reduced time and respect for God and in deteriorating relationships between brethren. We will ease off in our prayer and study, relax our formality before God, and behave carelessly (“sin in haste and repent at leisure”), assuming that He will forgive us our every trespass. Yet, we will gossip about our church friends, take advantage of their kindness and forgiveness, betray them when convenient, and judge them mercilessly even for their most minor faults. None of these things express godly love; they all portray love growing cold.
Late in his life, the apostle John wrote almost exclusively about agape love. Most of his audience probably thought it was an obsession with him, and they likely turned a deaf ear to him, complaining that the old man was ranting about his pet subject again. But perhaps John remembered hearing these words from Jesus’ lips decades before and realized that love was what the church needed to be reminded about. “This is the message that you heard from the beginning, that we should love one another” (I John 3:11). “If someone says, ‘I love God,’ and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen, how can he love God whom he has not seen?” (I John 4:20).
Clearly, he saw the practice of godly love in the church as critical to those living in his day. How much more critical is it to those of us who live so much nearer to the horrors of the end time and the return of Jesus Christ? The horror of the murders in Newtown, Connecticut and the seemingly endless death toll created by Muslims across the world, should remind us that we need to stoke the fires of God’s love, as we see the Day of the lord swiftly approaching.
The Lord bless you and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you,
And be gracious unto you;
The Lord lift up His countenance upon you,
And give you peace.