Everyone is witnessing the obvious manifestation of the Word of God across the globe. Jesus told His disciples in Matthew 24:7-8, "See that you are not troubled; for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be famines, pestilences, and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of sorrows (NKJV)." God has given us forewarning about the difficulties that will come upon the earth before the end of the age. Verse 7 specifically lets the believer know that "pestilences" will occur in the earth. The Greek word "loimos" used here for "pestilences" is better translated "plague." A first century plague was a spreading disease that affected whole communities and even countries. This means that the modern day equivalent to a Biblical plague is a "pandemic." What is happening right now in the world is a direct fulfillment of the prophetic words of Jesus Christ.
Indeed, we are living at the end of the age and the "beginning of sorrows" mentioned above is being seen as never before. We can expect to continue seeing these hardships come upon the earth: pestilences, wars, famines, earthquakes, etc. Recently, record-setting earthquakes happened in Utah, and the idolatrous "angel" atop the famous Mormon temple was severely damaged. It is no coincidence that the golden trumpet being held by this pagan idol came tumbling down from the heights of those manmade spires. For there will be a trumpet sounded soon and very soon that will be heard round the world. In that moment, the Archangel of the Lord Almighty will sound the Trumpet of God and the Bride of Christ will be caught up into Glory (1 Thes. 4:16)! Come what may, earthquake or pestilence, Jesus is with us! He is Lord of Lords and King of Kings and will always be mighty to save His people from destruction (Zeph. 3:17). We are being called and challenged to be movers and shakers for the Kingdom of God during this final chapter (After all, that's always the best part of any story!). In view of this fact, we cannot run around in fearful panic, sit down in defeat, or fall asleep until the trumpet blows!
It is important for believers to understand that "the beginning of sorrows" mentioned in Matthew 24 were not intended to fill them with sorrow. They are, however, going to bring sorrow and destruction to the forces of evil and those that obstinately refuse to accept Jesus as Lord and Savior. How do we know that Jesus did not intend for believers to be sorrowful during the end times? Because Jesus said, "I have told you these things, so that In Me you may have peace and confidence. In the world you have tribulation and trials and distress and frustration; but be of good cheer [take courage; be confident, certain, undaunted]! For I have overcome the world" (John 16:33 AMP). Jesus gave us forewarning of the things to come, so that ONLY IN HIM we would find peace and confidence during these times where so many are filled with fear and doubt. Jesus did not want His followers to be caught unaware by the strife of the end times or be filled with sorrow and fear because of them. On the contrary, Jesus told us to "be of good cheer [take courage; be confident; certain; undaunted]" (Jn. 16:33 AMP). This is not a mere suggestion from our Lord Jesus, but it is a direct command from the One who overcame death, hell, and the grave! The Commander of Heaven's Army (Josh. 5:14) has issued orders to His soldiers (2 Tim. 2:3-4) to be of GOOD cheer, courageous, confident, and unmoved by the loud-barking, hell hounds who seek to intimidate the Lord's army into a panicked retreat!
All that being said, Christians are being bombarded with overwhelming doom and gloom from all sides, and the struggle to retain hope and peace is more real than ever! There is a blanketing spirit of heaviness moving across the church, seeking to demoralize and paralyze the believers from fighting the good fight of faith (1 Tim. 6:12). This is because there is too much "human strength" in the church and not enough "Spirit strength!" The Lord Almighty is saying this to us now, "Your help will not come from your own strength and power. No, your help will come from my Spirit" (Zech. 4:6 ERV). Do not miss this fact: We are soldiers in the Lord's Army who wear spiritual armor and have been called to fight a spiritual battle (Eph. 6:10-17)! That spirit of heaviness, depression, fearful anxiety, and defeat must be beaten off of us and those around us with a vengeance! But in order to do that, we must grab hold of our spirituality and let go of our humanity.
The following passage paints a vivid picture of who God has created the church to be and of what He has called the church to do during these final chapters of the HIStory:
6 May the praise of God be in their mouths
and a double-edged sword in their hands,
7 to inflict vengeance on the nations
and punishment on the peoples,
8 to bind their kings with fetters,
their nobles with shackles of iron,
9 to carry out the sentence written against them—
this is the glory of all his faithful people.
Praise the Lord.
We are soldiers in the Army of the Lord! There is a war going on each and every day all around us, and right now it is more visible than ever. People are sick and dying, and we must prepare for battle and go into the world ready to fight. Put on your spiritual armor and do not forget to wage war with your spiritual weapons—praise and the double-edged sword. The double-edged sword is the Word of God (Heb. 4:12, Rev. 2:12)! Keep God's praise and His Word in your mouth at all times! Go ahead and say right out loud something like this: "I give God all my praise right now because me and my family tread on serpents, scorpions, and coronavirus, and by no means will anything harm us in Jesus' Name (Lk. 10:19)!" You could also say, "I praise the Lord Almighty today because He is faithful, and today He will strengthen my immune system and protect me from the evil coronavirus in Jesus' Name! Amen. If that feels too spiritual for you, then that is a good thing! Believers need to become "too spiritual" if they want to live a life of victory in Jesus Christ! Go ahead and sing praise to God and speak His Word in faith today.
Consider this final thought: Have you ever seen a battalion of soldiers marching while singing cadence? It is awe-inspiring! In the armed services, a cadence call is a call-and-response song sung by military personnel while running or marching. When we decide to become the Army of the Lord described in Psalm 149 and march into battle with the cadence of Praise and the Word of God on our lips, the devil and his demons will be running scared! Why is that? Remember, a cadence call is a "call-and-response song" sung by soldiers while marching into battle. When the Soldiers in the Army of the Lord march into battle and begin their "Call Song," King Jesus WILL RESPOND.
Blessings of protection and peace be upon you and your family in Jesus' Name! Amen.
Pastor Savanna Rojas