“If thou hast run with the footmen, and they have wearied thee, then how canst thou contend with horses? And if in the land of peace . . . how wilt thou do in the swelling of Jordan?” (Jeremiah 12:5).
Harder days may be ahead for Christians. Deception is on the rise. The “falling away” that Paul mentioned is happening as we speak. While there have always been false prophets in the world, there is a growing departure from the truth today. The Word of God is not respected as it used to be, and many doctrines that represent the foundation stones of the Christian faith are being cast aside.
It may well be that persecution of the faithful will be led by those who profess Christianity. If the “man of sin” is manifested, that “son of perdition; who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God,” he will have no time for Bible-honoring Christians. We must prepare ourselves to contend with horses and with a swelling Jordan.
We have had things very easy. For many years now, the Western Christian church has enjoyed relative peace in a land of plenty. Our comfort zone has been undisturbed, and we have tried hard to preserve it. We have been largely unhindered in outreach efforts over the last several decades. It appears that we have not had to face the hardships of persecution. But I wonder if our “persecution” consists of the very peace and plenty that we enjoy.
Have we become weary in running with footmen? Have we been negligent about the stern requirement of God—that more of our plenty should be funneled into Kingdom work? Are we failing to “endure hardness” while we live and trust in a land of peace?
Let us prepare to contend with stronger forces of ungodliness and greater floods of persecution. It seems that the hoofbeats are approaching and the roar of the water is becoming louder.
“Ye shall have tribulation ten days: be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life” (Revelation 2:10b).