Sodom

In light of the massacre in Las Vegas, a few words for my Christian brothers and sisters:

Please pray for comfort for those who have lost their loved ones. Pray that those who have been wounded will be healed. Pray for the United States. Please keep in mind, that although the Lord is coming, He is not willing that any should perish:

“But do not overlook this one fact, beloved, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance. But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, and then the heavens will pass away with a roar, and the heavenly bodies will be burned up and dissolved, and the earth and the works that are done on it will be exposed” (2 Peter 3:8–10 emphasis added). 1

We are to pray for everyone:

“First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way” (1 Timothy 2:1–2 emphasis added).

Do not think that the people in the United States or Las Vegas “deserved” this. Jesus challenged this way of thinking.

“There were some present at that very time who told him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. And he answered them, ‘Do you think that these Galileans were worse sinners than all the other Galileans, because they suffered in this way? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish. Or those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them: do you think that they were worse offenders than all the others who lived in Jerusalem? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish’” (Luke 13:1–5).

So, please respond with compassion.

Be aware of this reality:

“And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold. But the one who endures to the end will be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come” (Matthew 24:12–14 emphasis added).

The society and the culture of the United States—should I assume this is true of many other nations?—has been affected by such horrible events and will be affected by this one, as well. It will be affected by this truth, too:

“But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty. For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power” (2 Timothy 3:1–5a).

The Lord will return, as surely as the sun rises. But difficult times lay ahead. “He” who restrains the “mystery of lawlessness” must be taken out of the way so that the “lawless one” will be revealed and then Jesus will return. “For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work. Only he who now restrains it will do so until he is out of the way. And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord Jesus will kill with the breath of his mouth and bring to nothing by the appearance of his coming” (2 Thessalonians 2:7–8).

Remain steadfast, Christians, and pray. Be watchful. “Behold, I am coming like a thief! Blessed is the one who stays awake, keeping his garments on, that he may not go about naked and be seen exposed!” (Revelation 16:15).

 

1All Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (2016). Wheaton: Standard Bible Society.

Art courtesy The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

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