What the Lord Is Saying on Covid-19. Part VI
Good morning, everyone. Alleluia.
I again thank Jehovah for His insight-giving word, giving understanding to me simple.
In Part II (see 19c) we learnt that going forward we need to look inward into our midst lest we be like the unwise virgins of Matthew 25.
You can read Part II here: What the Lord Is Saying on Covid-19. Part II
In Part IV we learnt to evaluate our individual conduct, since according to Luke 6: 41-42 and 11: 34-36 we must first remove the beam of timber in our own eyes before beaming our light on our brethren.
You can read Part IV here: What the Lord Is Saying on Covid-19. Part IV
Note that the Lord does not here refer to us scrutinizing our enemies, not even our neighbours, but our brethren!
In Part V, the Lord was kind to bring to our consciousness that there shall be in our midst relative peace, divine provision, powerful works, and falling away. As we read in Luke 9: 62, this will be a very sad event indeed. Remember Judas Iscariot?
Read Part V here: What The Lord Is Saying About Covid-19 Part V
As we therefore follow the timeline already established in Part V we find immediately after our anchor story:
(a). powerful works: unexpected people got amazing miracles: in Mark 5: 21-43, Jairus a leader of the synagogue was not a classic disciple of Jesus, neither was the woman with the issue of blood who merely touched the Lord in secret! On the other hand, in Mark 6: 1-5, the people of the Lord’s hometown rejected him; and He could not do any miracles there, except lay his hands on a few sick people and heal them.!
(b). divine provision: in Mark 6: 30-44, He fed five thousand men excluding women and children who by my reckoning could not have been less than quadruple; cf. Luke 12: 1.
(c). relative peace: before a final storm comes in Mark 6: 45-51; more in Part VIII, by God’s grace.
(d). falling away: it will be rather unwise of us to imagine that the prince of this world will look away while we enjoy the foregoing.
(i). In 1 Peter 5: 7-9, just after the reassurance of powerful works, divine provision and relative peace as outlined above – casting all your care [all your anxieties, all your worries, all your concerns, AMP] upon him; for he careth for you – we read: Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about [in fierce hunger, AMP], seeking whom he may devour. Whom resist steadfast in the faith… – KJV.
(ii). we may recall from Part I that we are encouraged to stand firm in Christ “on whom our faith depends from beginning to end” for our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. The passage goes on to admonish us to put on the full armour of God with our feet shod with the equipment of the good news of peace. – Hebrews 12: 2, GNB; Ephesians 6: 12, 15, NWT.
(iii). we are therefore not surprised that in Mark 6: 7-13 (omitted in the above timeline) the Lord sends the Church out to evangelise: They went out and preached that people should repent. They drove out many demons and anointed many sick people with oil and healed them. And thus they withstood the Devil!
Why is this important at this time?
There is no better time to bring “the good news of peace” than in turmoil! In Part I we learnt that in this pandemic, “implicit in our salvation is evangelism in whatever form”. Not only is evangelism a part of our defence, it is in these last days a preparation for our Bridegroom lest we find ourselves soiled and unfit for the Feast. – Matthew 22: 11-14; Luke 13: 24-28.
The Lord is saying He did not save us to sit idle in political correctness; no, He saved us to depopulate the Kingdom of Darkness by withstanding the Devil even at this time (Mark 3: 27). He says we should examine the Scriptures together:
A. In Romans 10: 1-15, we find a message that is perhaps even more relevant in our time than when Apostle Paul wrote the epistle nearly 2 000 years ago.
(i). We already know from Parts II and V that the Intervention is through a ship, “a vessel”. In verses 6 and 7 we are told not to expect spacecrafts or submarines…
(ii). Verse 8: …but that the means to berth the ship is in our mouth and in our heart; that is, the word of faith, which we preach.
(iii). Verse 13: everyone who calls on the Name of the Lord will be saved.
(iv). Verse 14: How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them?
(v). Verse 15: And how can they preach unless they are sent? As it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!”
Note: Here, Apostle Paul quotes Isaiah 52: 7, What a beautiful sight! On the mountains a messenger announces to Jerusalem, “Good news! You’re saved. There will be peace. Your God is now King.” – CEV.
Again, we see the phrase, good news of peace. Verse 10 tells us what it is: The LORD has shown all nations his mighty strength; now everyone will see the saving power of our God. – CEV.
B. Acts 26: 16-18. Now get up and stand on your feet. I have appeared to you to appoint you as a servant and as a witness of what you have seen of me and what I will show you. I will rescue you from your [current crisis]. I am sending you to [everyone] to open their eyes and turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, so that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me.
Note that we are sent to “our own people and to the unbelievers”.
C. In 2 Corinthians 2: 14-16, we read: But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumphal procession in Christ and through [our evangelism] spreads everywhere the fragrance of the knowledge of him. For we are to God the aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing. To the [latter, NWT] we are the smell of death; to the [former, NWT], the fragrance of life.
Note again that our evangelism fragrance is not limited to unbelievers, who are perishing and whom we are to constantly remind of the impending death that is the wages of sin, but instructively extends to believers who are being saved and whom we are to continuously cue into the everlasting life that is the gift of God lest they wither away. – Romans 6: 23; 1 Corinthians 10: 12.
Earlier, in 2 Corinthians 2: 5-9, Apostle Paul had said, If anyone has caused grief [among you] … the punishment inflicted on him by the majority is sufficient for him. Now instead, you ought to forgive and comfort him, so that he will not be overwhelmed by excessive sorrow. I urge you, therefore, to reaffirm your love for him. The reason I wrote you was to see if you would stand the test and be obedient in everything.
D. John 15: 6, 7. If anyone does not remain in me, he is like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given you.
We can therefore infer the following:
(i). first we who #haveJesus must get up and stand firm in Christ.
(ii). then we must run up the mountain to preach the word of faith, the gospel of peace, to the afflicted swine lest they choke in the sea. See Part II
(iii). our beautiful attire and our aroma (or odour, NWT) for the Great Feast with the Lamb are in our evangelism.
(iv). our fragrance (or sweet odour, NWT) of life is however in our restoring one another! (Interestingly, Apostle Paul uses different Greek words for the two smells.)
(v). our God does not bury wounded soldiers, He heals and restores them. Remember Samson?
(vi). He expects our obedience in this matter: that we reaffirm our love for our brethren falling behind lest they fall away.
(vii). there is a test involved in this obedience. Scriptures tell both the instructor and the instructed to forgive after modest discipline in order that Satan might not outwit us, for we are not unaware of his schemes. – 2 Corinthians 2: 10, 11.
It is therefore not a coincidence that the scriptures to resist the Devil and to put on the full armour of God (by our evangelism; see above) had earlier discussed the organisation of our congregations and the organisation of our households respectively! We are not unaware of the Satan’s schemes, especially in these last days; more in Part VII by God’s grace.
The Lord is saying at this time to ask us:
(i). Are we a beautiful sight? If I opened my mouth to preach Jesus, will anyone conversant with my ways give me sincere attention?
(ii). Do I smell right? Do my fruit abide?
Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might, for in the grave, where you are going, there is neither working nor planning nor knowledge nor wisdom. Is your social media for Jesus? – Ecclesiastes 9: 10.
And that servant, which knew his lord’s will, and prepared not himself, neither did according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes. – Luke 12: 47.
My prayer remains that we #qualify. Matthew 24: 13; Acts 20: 24.
Whereas most scripture quotations are from the New International Version, heavy reliance has again been placed on The New Testament in the Original Greek 1881 by BF Westcott and FJA Hort as reproduced in The Kingdom Interlinear Translation of the Greek Scriptures 1985 by the New World Bible Translation Committee.
(ii). CEV, Contemporary English Version.
(iii). GNB , Good News Bible.
(iv). KJV, King James’ Version.
(v). NWT, New World Translation.
©Ayk • 10 May 2020
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