Revive Our Hearts Podcast

Who Knows?

Due to the timeliness of this material, this transcript may contain additional material not aired on the actual radio program.

Leslie Basham: Okay, we've got ABC, CNN, NPR, AFR, CBS, PBS, MSNBC, Bill O'Reilly, Tavis Smiley, Limbaugh, Brokaw, Chung and Harvey. Who really knows what's going on in our world?

The Holy Spirit does.

This is Revive Our Hearts with Nancy Leigh DeMoss.

Believers in Jesus Christ have access to special insight and direction. This comes from the Spirit of God working through the Word of God. We need His power and direction when facing dangerous times. Here's Nancy to tell us more.

Nancy Leigh DeMoss: I have to tell you that it's hard for me to imagine how anyone who does not know Christ personally could make it through these kinds of times without feeling overwhelmed with fear and terror.

And Jesus told us in the Gospel of Mark, chapter 13, the passage we've been looking at this week, that times were going to get worse and worse, that we should expect trouble and that, like labor pains, we should expect that pain to become more intense, become more frequent. And yet He said we were not to be alarmed.

Now, I know that even if you are facing those times--with the Lord--some of you as Moms have the responsibility to help your children walk through these kinds of news reports that can strike fear and terror into a little one's heart.

So that's why it's so important as believers that we go back to the Word of God and we say, "What is God's perspective on what's happening in our world today?" And how can we face times when there are wars and rumors of wars and earthquakes and famines and conflict and not just on the international scope, but in our very personal lives.

How can we face those circumstances in a marriage, in a workplace, in a parent-child relationship or on the world scene without being alarmed?

Well, we have to have God's point of view. In Mark, chapter 13, Jesus took four of His disciples and He instructed them in terms that are intimate and personal. He said, "I want to prepare you beforehand for what you're going to face. And then I want to help you know what to do about times like these, these end times in which we're living."

And we saw in the last session that we're not to be alarmed. We're to be on our guard, we're to be alert and we're to believe and proclaim the Gospel because these days really do provide some incredible opportunities for us to tell people about Jesus.

And then Jesus goes on to say in Mark 13, verse 11, that in these end times we need to rely on the Holy Spirit to show us what to do and what to say. Scripture tells us in Proverbs, chapter 3, that we're not to rely on our own natural understanding. We're not to try and figure these things out ourselves. We're not to try and have everything planned out and figured out.

Instead, we're to walk by faith--and to rely on the Holy Spirit to show us what to do when we need to know what to do.

So Jesus says in Mark 13, verse 11, "In times of persecution, when they bring you to trial, and deliver you over to the authorities, don't be anxious beforehand about what you are to say, but say whatever is given you in that hour, for it is not you who speaks, but the Holy Spirit."

I'm so glad to know that as I walk through my days, and I often end up in situations that I had not planned on or that were not scheduled, and I find myself in circumstances where I don't know what to say, I don't know how to give counsel to a person in a particular situation or I don't know how to deal with the conflict that arises, I'm so glad that, as a child of God, I know that I have the Holy Spirit living in me.

And I want to walk through each day in dependence upon the power of the Holy Spirit knowing that when I need to know what to do, when I need to know what to say, He will be within me, speaking and leading and guiding in how I should respond.

I shared with you earlier in this series about a friend who is walking through a very difficult marriage situation with an adulterous husband. And each day it seems like there's another event that takes place, and we'll talk on the phone.

And she's trying to figure out "What am I supposed to do in this circumstance?" But it's been neat to see how she really is not getting caught off-guard, though she never could have planned the unfolding of these events.

But because of the Holy Spirit living within her and because she is in the Word on a consistent basis, drawing out the Word of God, when she gets into these moments where she has to respond quickly, she has to know what to say, it's amazing to see how God is giving her the words that she needs.

She never could have written the script out herself ahead of time. But the Holy Spirit within her is giving her that ability and will give you that ability as you walk through these troubled end times.

Now, just a reminder that the fact that the Holy Spirit will show us what to do and what to say does not guarantee that we'll escape the trouble or the persecution. We need to plan on the fact that we will have to go through trouble and persecution and problems along with the rest of the world until Jesus comes back to write that final chapter. So we're to rely on the Holy Spirit to show us what to do and what to say.

And then Jesus says, "You need to persevere." You've got to endure. Jesus says in Mark 13, verse 13, "The one who endures, or the one who stands firm to the end, will be saved."

You see, the race that God has called us to run is not a sprint. It's not a hundred-yard dash. It's cross-country. And that requires that we have endurance, that we run all the way to the end.

And the Scripture says that the one who endures, the one who stands firm to the end, will be saved. Now, what does that mean?

Well, to the end means to endure completely, to endure to the limit, to go all the way, to go the distance with God, to go all the way to the end of our life here on this earth. And in order to do that, you and I have to be prepared to stand, to endure for the long haul.

Now you say, "Is that how I get saved? The one who endures to the end will be saved? If I endure to the end, that's how I earn my salvation?" No. We know that salvation is by the grace of God through faith in Jesus Christ alone. But an evidence of the fact that we have been saved is the fact that we will endure all the way to the end, that we will persevere as children of God, walking with Him and by faith all the way to the end.

For the Book of Jude, verse 24 tells us that He is able to keep us from falling and to preserve us all the way to the end. So, Jesus says, "endure." Persevere and know that that perseverance is an outward sign of the genuineness of your profession of faith in Jesus Christ.

And then let me draw one other application out of this passage in Mark 13. And that is that we need, in times like these, to know the Word of God. You say, where do you get that?

Well, look at verse 14, Mark, chapter 13, verse 14. Jesus said, "When you see the abomination of desolation, standing where it ought not to be, let the reader understand." And then He goes on to explain what's to happen in the day when this abomination of desolation is standing in the place where it ought not to be.

Now, I'm not going to go in this program into detail about what that abomination of desolation is or what it means, but the point is that the disciples knew what it meant. They knew what Jesus was talking about because they knew the Old Testament prophecy.

For example, in Daniel, chapter 9 and chapter 11 and chapter 12, of the prophecy of Daniel, there was a reference to this abomination of desolation, standing in the place where it ought not to be.

Now, if you're not familiar with those Old Testament prophecies or with Mark, chapter 13, that's going to sound like a foreign language to you. You're not going to have a clue as to what Jesus is talking about.

It so happens that He's talking about a near-fulfillment in the destruction of the temple when the Romans brought unclean, profane things into the temple, the clean place of God. It was an abomination of desolation that they brought into the pure temple of God.

And then it's also speaking of the far, yet-to-be fulfilled time in the end days, in the time of the tribulation, when there would be (in another temple in Jerusalem), profanity that would take place in the temple of God which was to be pure.

But the point I want to make here is that you and I need to be students of the Word of God so that when we come to passages like Mark, chapter 13 where Jesus is giving us exhortation and instruction about what to do in these end times, we'll understand what He's talking about.

That's why we need to read the Word of God, study it, understand it. Now, we'll never understand it completely or like we wish that we did. And I'll be the first to tell you that I couldn't give you a great explanation of the abomination of desolation standing in the temple. But these are things I'm studying. These are things I want to understand.

And most importantly, we need to learn how to apply these things--the Word of God--to realize circumstances and situations. But here's the bottom line. In times like these, troubled days in which we live, whether it's in your marriage or in your family or in your community or in our world, as we face times like these, you've got to get your input, your direction, your understanding from the Word of God.

And could I suggest that may mean that you need to get less of it from the media. Turn off the television at times. Turn off your radio. Don't have those things going all the time.

You need time to be quiet and alone, on your knees and in the Word of God saying, "Lord, teach me what I am to understand about these days." And if you'll ground your heart and your mind in the Word of God, you'll find that you won't be confused, you won't be easily deceived or led astray. You're not going to live a frazzled, frustrated, fearful, terrified life. You're going to be able to walk in confidence and in security because you're grounded in the Word and the ways of God.

Leslie Basham: Nancy Leigh DeMoss will be right back to lead us in prayer. We hope that you're getting grounded in the Word and ways of God. If you'd like some tools to help you study the Bible more effectively, you can visit our Web site, ReviveOurHearts.com and take a look at the resources we have available.

We hope this program is helping you get grounded in the Word of God. If Revive Our Hearts has been a help to you, would you consider partnering with us to reach women with the truth of God's Word?

You can pray for us. And if you visit ReviveOurHearts.com, you can find a list of prayer requests and you can help us financially. The way we fund this program is through the donations of our listeners.

When you contact us with a gift of any amount, we'd like to express our thanks by sending you a copy of Nancy's booklet, In Times Like These. It will guide you in praying for our nation, our President and the people of our world as we face conflict in the Persian Gulf.

To get a copy, you can give us a call at 1‑800‑569‑5959. Or write to Revive Our Hearts.

Now, we're living in a time of real uncertainty. Tomorrow we'll hear why that's not so bad. I hope you can join us. Now, let's pray with Nancy.

Nancy Leigh DeMoss: Father, thank You that You give to Your children the grace to endure. Thank You that You have given us Your promises and Your Word. And we know that the final chapter will yet come true, that You will be glorified and Your kingdom will come and Your will will be done on earth as it is in heaven.

Oh, Lord, now when we're down in the trenches, we're at the battlefront, figuratively or literally, help us to endure. Keep our hearts from being troubled. And may we find the faith and the confidence that we need as we saturate ourselves in Your Word for You have given us all that we need for times like these. I pray in Jesus' name. Amen.

Revive Our Hearts with Nancy Leigh DeMoss is a ministry partnership of Life Action Ministries.

 

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