October 23, 2023

In the Fall of 1939, the American Pastor Donald Grey Barnhouse was travelling to Ireland in order to do a conference. On his way, he was told the alarming news that England and France had just declared war on Germany after it invaded Poland which caused him to throw out his original plans. When he arrived, instead of speaking on his previous subject, he opened up his Bible to Matthew 24:6 which says:

And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars but see that ye be not troubled for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet (King James Version).

He then said to his audience “What does Jesus mean when He tells us not to be troubled?”

“He means do not be troubled when your country goes to war.”

“Do not be troubled when they go into battle.”

“Do not be troubled when the enemy invades your land and tries to conquer you and you have to put up a fight.”

“Why? Because the Lord is in control of it. He is sovereign and He has the end planned out from the beginning.”

Donald Grey Barnhouse’s point is that the Lord put a passage like Matthew 24 in the Bible so we would not be afraid when catastrophe strikes. He placed prophecies like this one in the Word of God so we can read them and find confidence in order to face the future. Scholars have estimated that about ¼ of all books in the Bible are on the subject of prophecy because the Scripture has a lot to say about this subject. It speaks repeatedly about the issue of end times and it does so in order to give us hope.

The reason I mention that is because, throughout our recent series on the government, several people have told me that they feel discouraged. As we have studied the subject of the church and state, it has made them wonder “Is there any hope for our world today?” The answer is “Yes” and our hope will be revealed when Jesus returns. The Bible says that, when He comes back, the Lord will set up a perfect government where He will rule the world as king which is what we are going to talk about this week at Grace Fellowship Church.

This Sunday, we are going to begin a series called “Our Future Hope: How the Return of Christ Gives Us Confidence to Face the Future” because I believe that is why the Lord gave us so many prophecies in the Bible. He did it in order to provide us with assurance as we face the days ahead and I cannot think of a better time to talk about that than right now. As war breaks out in Israel and our government leaders begin to talk about things like COVID-19 again, it is causing a lot of people to panic but the Bible reminds us that we do not need to do that. As Jesus said in Revelation 1:17: “Do not be afraid.”

The phrase “Do not be afraid” could be translated “Do not be troubled.”

Do not be alarmed.

Do not panic.

Do not be unnerved.

Do not lose heart.

Do not despair.

Do not quit.

Do not throw in the towel.

Do not give up hope.

Why? Because that verse goes on to say that Jesus is “the first and the last.” He was there in the beginning and He will be there in the future which is why we can trust what He says about the subject of prophecy. We can read books like Revelation with certainty knowing that every word that it declares is true.

Please join us this Sunday morning as we talk about that. The service will begin at 9:30 and it will be recorded and loaded on our You Tube Channel later for any who are not able to attend in person.

– Jeremy Cagle