Faith and Love in Difficult Times

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“And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.” (Matthew 24:12/KJV).

Evil and injustice is a reality in this world. The daily news makes it amply evident that continually people are doing wrong to other men and women.

The challenge is: how do we react? We have been created as social beings. In our daily lives, we often do depend on others. What if some people we meet just are not doing what we expect them to do?

At times in human history, cultural values got lost. In the Bible, we read that the Israelites in some situations forgot about God and the divinely given conduct of behaviour.

Sadly in formerly Christian countries, people have been moving away from what used to be considered Christian standards. Many dangers can arise if this should lead to a loss of social values such as respect for human and civil rights of others.

The Bible calls for honesty. The Ten Commandments emphasise the integrity of private ownership. The law of God stresses the value of married relationships. It commands us not to inflict physical harm on each other.

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We constantly hear of wars, war crimes and terrorist atrocities. We learn of increased tensions at workplaces and in families.

Anybody who cares enough can gather information about Christians being persecuted because of the way they are practising their faith. Followers of Jesus Christ in various Muslim countries are facing difficulties these days. We have heard of severe physical attacks against Christians launched by nationalistic Hindu mobs in India. Only recently we were told of shootings in a number of churches in Sri Lanka.

In Matthew 24 Jesus has been predicting things that were going to happen. The temple in Jerusalem was destroyed by the Romans in AD 70. Nevertheless, this chapter points way beyond that. It is meant also to help us navigate our present time.

“And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.” How do we react to unpleasant changes in our human environment?

It is difficult to remain warm-hearted, affectionate and loving when others seem to utterly neglect those values. As you experience others being disrespectful with you, you at times may find it harder to be at ease. Socialising then occasionally may become a kind of a challenge to you.

The Bible does not encourage us to forsake Christian values when others don’t care about what is right or wrong. Rather we are called to remain faithful to God.

I am writing this as part of a study of 1 Corinthians chapter 13. Leading up to this chapter Paul said he wanted to point to a “more excellent way.” Then he shared outstanding and poetic words on Christian love.

Love “thinketh no evil.” (KJV). Love “keeps no record of wrongs.” (NIV).

We are taught there must be a way for Christians to remain loving at heart even when facing crude or unjust treatment. For that, it is good to pray to God and to seek instruction and encouragement in the Bible.

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