20 The rest of mankind that were not killed by these plagues still did not repent of the work of their hands; they did not stop worshiping demons, and idols of gold, silver, bronze, stone and wood—idols that cannot see or hear or walk. 21 Nor did they repent of their murders, their magic arts, their sexual immorality or their thefts.
As I said in one of my earlier posts, there are a whole lot of people these days who think that the End Times are closing in on us. I also noted that many generations have believed that they would see Christ return -- only to be disappointed. Yet, at some point a generation will come that will say "the end is near" and, unlike every generation before it, they will be right. Who knows -- this could well be that generation.
What I can say with certainty, though, is that whether the end is near or not men will continue to resist God's will, men will experience the consequences of their refusal to submit to Him, and men will refuse to repent. It is a cycle that has persisted from the beginning. It is a cycle that will persist to the end.
I am in the middle of reading a book called "The Harbinger" which I picked up at the suggestion of my wife. The book has some theological question marks to be sure. But, the fundamental premise is quite sound.
The fundamental question The Harbinger seeks to answer is what happens when a nation turns its back on God. In fact, I think that one of the reasons the end seems near to many in this country is that they have lost hope in America. Every year, our nation seems to pull further and further away from God. Every year, the world around us seems to get darker and darker.
Earlier tonight a friend asked me this question:
I think this is a really great question, and one which I may try to deal with in a later blog. But there is a related question of equal importance, which is why would men turn their back on God knowing the consequences of doing so? Or, for that matter, why would a nation turn its back on God knowing the consequences of doing so?
Make no mistake about it, in either case the consequence of turning our back on God is "wrath." I know, I know -- we don't like to talk about wrath anymore. But, that's the reality. Its biblical. When we turn our back on God we should not expect a "time out" -- we should expect wrath. And, I am afraid that if the United States doesn't get its act together soon wrath is coming.
I hope I am wrong.
18 The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of men who suppress the truth by their wickedness, 19 since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. 20 For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse.
21 For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools 23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like mortal man and birds and animals and reptiles.
Romans 1:18-23 (NIV)