August 3, 2015

The Future Is Now

“But the Spirit expressly says that in later times some will depart from the faith.” 1 Timothy 4:1

In Greek language there are two words for “time": Χρόνος / chronos and καιρός / kairos. Chronos is best understood as a period of time or swathe of time measured over seconds, minutes, hours, days, months or years. We gauge chronos with watches and clocks. A chronology is a sequence of time concerning real world events. Kairos on the other hand is more specific. Kairos denotes an exact or specific time, era or incidence.

Paul uses this word in its plural form kairoi three times in the Pastoral Epistles. None of them are in a positive context either.

He speaks of the times of apostasy in 1 Timothy 4:1

The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons.

The difficult times in 2 Timothy 3:1-5

But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God—having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people.

The times of disinterest in the Word in 2 Timothy 4:3, 4

For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths.

Each era of spiritual decline can be seen age after age and it is heralded by the signs mentioned. Specifically, in the last days things will be pretty horrible. Are we in the last days or what many would call the End of Times? Yeah, I’d say so. We are clearly entering into them. We must also understand that anything after the ascension of Christ into Heaven in bodily form is considered the last/latter days but in the truest sense though I believe we are running out of time.

A Time of Defection

Paul is clear in 1 Timothy 4:1. He warns of an age or exact time to come in the future where people will fall away from the proclamation or assertion of the Apostolic faith. The same Faith preached to the Apostles by Jesus. The word for “departs from” is ποστήσονταί / apostesontai and means to not just depart but actually cause people to walk away in a way the denotes a revolt or deliberate going against what they do not like. Whoever departs will be leaving because they chose to, not necessarily because they are accidentally being drawn way through deceit. Those that leave will leave because of the effects of their own sin and by their own informed choice (albeit poorly informed). Will there be outside influence? Yes. If they are purposely turning leaving it stands to reason and is clearly stated in the text of 2 Timothy 4:4 that they will seek out myths they know are wrong because that is exactly what they chose to hear. This tells me that it is not necessarily the teaching of false teachers or the things that make their ears itch that will make them turn way. It shows that the true enemy primarily lies within. That which comes from without is only an instigator and an enabler.

Apostesontai and its root word (cognate) is where we get the word for apostasy. People will willingly defect from the Christian faith through their own choices and sin. There will be no one to blame but themselves. Isn't this exactly what we see today en masse? Laws are being passed to specifically snub the Christian Faith. Laws like the Obergefell v Hodges ruling that specifically flaunts sexual immorality in God’s face as the law of the land, just as Roe v Wade flaunted murder in His face 40 years ago? How can we possible expect that God will forebear these perversions and miscarriages of justice without judgment?

The entirety of the US government system and to most extents the education system have removed God under the premise of separation of Church and State. Nearly all of the scientific establishment which is the secular world’s new religion also serves at the altar of godlessness. I truly believe the inability of people to think logically and reason nowadays is the onset or beginning of said judgment because Romans 1 tells us that those who have apostatized from God are given over to their sins and their minds become seared to the point where they approve of one another’s sin which they know is wrong. In other words they cannot think correctly. Therefore I believe the commencement of judgment is already upon us.

We currently live in a specific time where people specifically have difficulty naming anything that is evil as evil (Isaiah 5). The spineless church, mostly for fear of losing members or tax exempt status are afraid or refuse to call things heretical or call sin a sin. Hence we have the open acceptance of homosexuality by mainline churches in the last year. Tolerance accepts all except things that Christianity deems appropriate. We teach everything but Christ and the Gospel in some churches. Tolerance of sin and unrighteousness, intolerance of righteousness. The tongues of people are singed as the sting of their acid words towards Christ and true Christians spill out like a cesspool from between rotten teeth. Apostasy has reached a cliff event and is now snowballing in an exponential manner. Even the non-believers know something is genuinely wrong and society’s collective rhetorical question is now, “What is happening in society?”

We’re currently in the process of being turned over to judgment and wrath of God just as Israel was multiple times in the Old Testament. The future the Bible spoke of in prophecy is now. The future is now. In the church it is even more insidious. It comes in the form of sermons that are pleasing to hear. Sermons that entertain more than they teach. Sermons that aren’t really sermons at all, they are more allegorical platitudes and motivational speeches of self-affirmation. It is talk of a god minus the Gospel and Jesus. It’s the kneejerk reaction to centuries of senseless dogmatic legalism. It is moralizing that speaks but seldom acts and it is full of bombast and devoid of grace.

It is speeches full of biblical idioms and phrases but empty of theology and the true message of the Gospel. Because it is so empty of true Biblical content simple or even overt twists of truth and narrative concern no one and go unrecognized. Everything is status quo as long as the message makes us feel good. We hear man-focused missives instead of God-focused veneration.

I sit back tonight and read the writing of the Church Fathers about of the heresy of old. I read about the Creeds and Catechisms that were formulated to quell them and I realize these heresies went nowhere. They are still with us repackaged and relabeled. In our modern churches and modern culture I see the likes of Docetism, Gnosticism, Modalism and Arianism and a pile of others and I realize…nothing has changed. There is nothing new under the sun. It has only been amplified and quickened by technological / intellectual arrogance and Biblical illiteracy. Quickened by giving it new life and quickened by being sped up…as we race towards a cliff, a future of judgment. A judgment who’s first wave has already arrived. A judgment that is now.

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