Through Much Tribulation

e4l5Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ in chapter twenty-one of Luke’s gospel presents many warnings regarding the state of the world prior to His return to the earth. Not only are wars, plagues, famines, terrors, and false prophets spoken of, but He informs us that the religious persecution of Christians will be common. He states, “But before all these things they will lay their hands on you and will persecute you delivering you to the synagogues and prisons bringing you before kings and governors for My name’s sake.” (Luke 21:12) Notice that He refers to believers being delivered to “synagogues” or taken captive by the devout or pious leaders in order to stand trial for their faith in Christ.

Soul Liberty is defined in a book written by Henry C. Fish titled “The Price of Soul-Liberty and Who Paid It” as the liberty to think and act in religious matters without human dictation or control. God has given men freedoms and liberties to choose and live according to his/her dictates. Scripture is the guideline given to believers to assist in discerning good and evil in relation to decision making pertaining to the will of God.  True believers will not or at least are hesitant to violate not only their conscience, but more importantly the Word of God while making assessments. Biblical convictions will most certainly cause conflicts in the world, but surprisingly, Jesus warns us struggles will also occur within the church. This is clearly demonstrated by the skirmish in the fourth century over Sacramental Efficacy. The Baptist opposed the idea of “clinic or sick-room baptism” as well as baptizing unconscious children in order that they might be saved. In response to this (unbiblical) soteriological view, the Baptist protested and were denounced by the Roman Empire.

According to Fish, they were persecuted by religious leaders as a result of holding their views. “In the following year, the council of Carthage, of which Augustine was the President, thus decreed: “We will that whosoever denies that little children, by baptism, are freed from perdition and eternally saved, that they be accursed…Thus early did Baptists begin to pay the price of Soul Liberty…And ever suffering for their faith, is it strange that they should have been first and foremost in denouncing religious tyranny, and proclaiming the sanctity of conscience?” True believers can expect similar responses from world governments and religious leaders comprising the twenty-first century false church. Especially, in relation to topics pertaining to marriage; false religions; homosexuality; the deity of Christ; the inerrancy of Scripture; biblical roles; government policies;  and soteriology.

A quick assessment of viewpoints, laws, and regulations recently implemented regarding those who oppose such hot topics as same sex ‘marriage’, public schools, abortion, homosexuality, Islam, and governmental policies  proves the truth of Jesus’ aforementioned predictions.  As a result of this increasingly more hostile environment, Believers have and will spend more time before judges and courts answering for our faith and convictions.  One example of secular opposition is the recent discovery of the illegal activities within the Internal Revenue Service.  Reports have been uncovered that expose the practice of opposing or denying certain non-profit organization’s request for 501c 4 status in order to block political influence.   Nevertheless, we see similar antagonism developing amongst religious leaders towards the concept of the God of the Bible being exclusive. Jesus states, “Anyone who goes too far and does not abide in the teachings of Christ does not have God…” (2 John 9)  Many multi-faith or ecumenical leaders are attempting to unify world religious by laying aside doctrine in order to come together for the sake of a humanitarian effort.

In an article titled, Is Pope Francis Laying The Ground Work For A One World Religion the author writes, “Does Pope Francis intend to help the global elite achieve their goal of uniting all of the religions of the world under a single banner? Will he be instrumental in establishing a single global religion for the glorious “new age” that the global elite believe is coming? After he was elected, the cover of Time Magazine declared Pope Francis to be the “New World Pope“, and since his election Pope Francis has made it abundantly clear that he is going to make ecumenical outreach a top priority. He has spoken of his “determination to continue on the path of ecumenical dialogue“, and he has already held a number of very high profile ecumenical meetings. Not only has he worked hard to reach out to leaders from various Christian traditions, he has also made it a point to try to acknowledge the mutual bonds that he feels with all other religions. For example, in one recent address he made it a point to say that he believes that Muslims worship and pray to the “one God” that he also worships.

This “all roads lead to the same God” philosophy is a hallmark of the one world religion that the global elite have been slowly building toward for decades. The global elite know that even with a one world economy and a one world government, humanity will never be truly united until there is a single global religion. Unfortunately, this one world religion that they are seeking to establish is diametrically opposed to the Christianity that we find in the Bible. By throwing out Biblical truth for the sake of “friendship between men and women of different religious traditions“, is Pope Francis fundamentally betraying the faith that he claims to represent?

Christian persecutions

The biggest similarity between Islam and Catholicism is that both religions have a long history of persecuting and murdering Christians. Foxe’s Book of Martyrs written by John Foxe records not only the labeling of Christians as apostates but numerous murders occurring because of believer’s opposition to idols and satanic rituals practices by the papacy. Again, we are warned by Christ about the practices of religious leaders, “They will make you outcast from the synagogue, but an hour is coming for everyone who kills you to think that he is offering service to God…” (John 15:2) So, how should believers respond? “It will lead to an opportunity for your testimony…for I will give you utterance and wisdom which none of your opponents will be able to resist or refute.” (Luke 21:13, 15)

Jesus’ solution to this problem is to witness, testify, or preach the gospel to our persecutors!

Only through hearing the “Good News” can men be saved. Therefore, Christians must not only be ready to preach the gospel but be ready to suffer for their faith. We are reminded in the book of Acts that through much tribulation, suffering, persecution, distress, rejection, we are to enter the kingdom of God. “Through many tribulations we must enter the kingdom of God.” (Acts 14:22b)

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3 Responses to Through Much Tribulation

  1. Hasani,

    It is good to hear from you! I appreciate your respect and piety, but you don’t have to be so formal. (You’re my biological brother and I love you dearly!) Nevertheless, I will address your comments with straightforwardness and truthfulness. After years of study and having read the Qur’an, it is clear that the practice of ecumenicalism is impossible for the Muslim. Why do you ask? You know as well as I do that Muhammad commands all Muslims (Quran and Hadith) to advance Islam by conversion or by the sword. A review of Muhammad’s life (AD 610-AD 622) reveals this statement to be true.
    In a book titled, “Dare To Explore” S. Micheael writes, “Muhammad was not accepted as a prophet in Mecca by his tribe, Quraysh early in the seventh century. He called on the people to reject idol worship, and to surrender to the one god, Allah. The messages received in a cave were originally peaceful (Sura 73:10, 2:129, 3:89). He initially appealed to the Jews and the Christian to believe he was a legitimate prophet. The Jews rejected him as a prophet…In AD 622, after being persecuted by his own people, Muhammad escaped from Mecca to Medina…During this period, Allah changed his mind and sent messages to Muhammad to fight and kill anyone who would not submit to Islam. Muhammad then began to teach his followers to oppress or kill non-Muslims…”
    Muslims who practice the teachings of Muhammad are not radicals or extremist, but obedient followers of the Qur’an. As a matter of fact, those who do not participate in Jihad or support it and those who do not are considered infidels. They could also lose their salvation (Sura 3:28). Below are a few (of many) verses in the Qur’an commanding/instructing Muslims to kill infidel’s or non-Muslims. Your own books, teachers, and scholars forbid any form of comprise with Jew’s and Christians.
    • Sura 2:193; 2:216; 8:39-42; 9:29; 4:76; 4:89; 8:12; 9:5; 61:4: 9:29; 25:52
    • Hadith 20: 4645; 33

    The Qur’an also teaches that lying is permissible by both Allah and his followers. (Sura 3:54; 5:89) Why is this allowed? Michael also states, “We also have an obligation to protect our children and grandchildren from the westernized version of Islam which tries deceptively, to present a friendly and peaceful Islam…Muslims have a mission to Islamize the whole world because they believe that Islam is the only true religion.”

    Muslims, believe Jesus to be a prophet and prophets never lie—correct? Now, let me address some of the statements made by Jesus as recorded in the Bible. His comments are exclusive, narrow, and restricted, because He says that He is both God and the only way to the Father. The Lord Jesus Christ confirmed His Deity and ministry by baring the sins of the world in His body on the cross. After His death, by crucifixion, He rose from the grave, proving that He was God. Below are just a few scriptural statements about His identity.

    • He is the Creator-“For by Him all things were created, both in heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or Dominions or rulers or authorities–all things have been created by Him and for Him. And He is before all things and in Him all things hold together.” (Colossians 1:16-17)

    • Jesus says this about Himself-“I am the Alpha and the Omega, who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.” (Revelation 1:8)

    • “I Am the Way, the Truth, and the Life; no one comes to the Father but through Me” (John 14:6)

    • The Messiah-“And she will bear a Son; and you shall call His name Jesus, for it is He who will save His people from their sins.” (Matthew 1:21)

    • His birth-“And she gave birth to her first born Son; and she wrapped Him in cloths, and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn…(Luke 2:7) “And they came into the house and saw the Child with Mary His mother and they fell down and worshiped Him…” (Matthew 2:11)

    • His first miracle-“This beginning of His sign’s Jesus did in Cana of Galilee, and manifested His glory, and His disciples believed in Him.” (John 2:11)

    • Crucifixion-“Now when the centurion saw what had happened, he began praising God, saying, Certainly this man was innocent…And he took it down (body) and wrapped it in a linen cloth, and laid Him in a tomb cut into the rock where no one had ever lain.” (Luke 47,53)

    • Resurrection from the dead-“…and that He appeared to more than five hundred brethren at one time, most of whom remain until now, but some have fallen asleep; then He appeared to James, then to all the apostles…” (I Corinthians 15:6-7)

    • His ascension-“And after He had said these things, He was lifted up while they were looking on, and a cloud received Him out of their sight…this Jesus who has been take up from you into heaven, will come in just the same way as you have watched Him go into heaven.” (Acts 1:9,11)

    Each of the points mentioned above are either denied or rejected by the writers of the Quran. For example, according to Muhammad and Khalif, Uthman ibn Affan, Jesus didn’t die on the cross, someone else was crucified. (Sura 4:157-158) I could continue with comparing and contrasting both ideologies in order to prove that Allah is a false god and has nothing in common with the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, but that is not my objective. My point is that Muslims and true believers (Christians) cannot practice this form of ecumenicalism because of the theological incompatibility.

    “Or what harmony has Christ with Belial, or what has a believer in common with an unbeliever.” (2 Corinthians 6:15)

    Hasani, maybe you have been deceived, or just participating in this deception, in either case, Islam will one day be destroyed. As well as, all other false religions who have rejected Jesus Christ and His atonement for sins (Catholics, Buddhist, Mormons, etc). As a matter of fact, Christ views individuals participating in this ecumenical movement as anti-Christ and deceivers.

    The Bible states, “For many deceivers have gone out into the world, those who do not acknowledge Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh. This is the deceive and the antichrist…Anyone who goes too far and does not abide in the teachings of Christ does not have God; the one who abides in the teachings, he has both the Father and the Son…If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not receive him into your house, and do not give him a greeting; for the one who gives him a greeting participates in his evil deeds.” (2 John 7,9-11)

  2. Imam Hasani Omarimuhammad says:

    Mr. Glover,

    Ecumenical dialogue is healing water. The concept of Ecumenical thought is not to erase the identity of those involved but looks to isolate the differences and through dialogue allow for explanation beyond spin related understanding. This country is an ecumenical concept and it is the greatest country in the world. It has its problems but its success is dependent on the exchange of various ideas and concepts. To erase that diversity and say that one idea is the only and right idea is what allowed Hitler and many others to rise to power. The ecumenical idea that Pope Francis has in mind will draw more humanity out of the controlling bodies of the world by giving a face/voice to the people that have been ignored or left behind. Having membership criteria to receive humanity is shameful -believe this way or you are excluded, or don’t believe this way and be annihilated. All religions should embrace the Pope’s willingness to open the Catholic churches policies to criticism and begin to open theirs also. The recent economic crisis proved that this is truly an interdependent planet and we all suffer as a whole when one part suffers. We should not believe that by drawing the best out of all faiths that one faith will be left behind. All faiths are motivated by the same principles; the belief that God charges us to be caretakers to the poor, the hungry, the sick, the less fortunate and to protect the rights of family and society. Although, the doctrine may vary and might be questioned the fact remains that no faith is alive without humanity. It seems irresponsible to believe otherwise.

    Imam Hasani Omarimuhammad

  3. Pingback: Persecution, Tribulation, Troubles, Trial: What the Bible Says to Christians | End Times Prophecy Report

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