The Urgency Of The Hour
By Rodney W. Francis
In recent times I have been challenged afresh of the need to spread the Message of Jesus Christ to the nations. While in Kenya in August 2012, I had an experience where it seemed that the Lord opened my eyes to see the urgency of the hour in which we live. I saw that many were perishing because of their ignorance of the truth of Jesus Christ, and I felt that I was meant to step-out and increase our activities in getting my books printed in the nations while the doors are still open. Yes, right now the doors into a number of nations are still open, but the day is coming when those doors will be closed. And once they are closed there will be no way of getting the Gospel into them from the outside! There will be no Christian Internet, Radio, TV or Christian Ministries allowed to go in and preach the Gospel; only what we are able to get into those nations while the doors are still open! It is hard to explain the feelings I felt in seeing and knowing this in my spirit. Then, when I came back to New Zealand, I was standing at our kitchen sink that had tea-leaves in it. As I poured water to get rid of them I was suddenly reminded of what I had experienced in Kenya and then saw that those tea-leaves represented multitudes of people heading swiftly to a lost eternity. God was speaking to me to step-up our involvement in reaching people for Christ before it is too late ~ while the doors are still open!
“WHILE MEN SLEPT . . .!!”
Just a few days before I wrote this, I had Matthew 13:24-30 (please read) quickened to me and that I was to preach it at the next morning’s service I was speaking at in Marton, New Zealand (at a church I had pioneered back in the early 1980’s). I wept as I shared. There has been good seed sown in the past for the Kingdom of God. But then it tells us that “while men slept” the enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat. The enemy got in while God’s people slept! Sleepy people are not active and watchful as those who are awake “having their senses exercised to discern both good and evil” (Hebrews 5:12-14). Sleepy people are not highly motivated for the cause of Jesus Christ. They tend to ‘exist’ more than live with a passion and vision to see “this Gospel of the Kingdom preached in all the world as a witness to all nations, and then the end will come” (Matthew 24:14). The result of the enemy‘s work was that it produced a mixture of bad seed in with the good. It created confusion, extra work and double effort to bring in the good seed harvest (the wheat) ~ for the tares had to be reaped first and disposed of before the good harvest could be brought in! Those conditions work to produce discouragement within us, as it makes the task look hopeless. One of the devil’s main strategies against the Holy Spirit-filled Christian is to cause discouragement. When we are discouraged we get spiritually sleepy! We do not have the same love and commitment to please the Lord and to serve His purposes. Discouragement makes us want to “give up.”
What is this telling us? It is telling me that we have today a mixture of good and bad in our midst as a result of Christians sleeping when they should be awake, spiritually alert and aware of the strategies of the enemy. Yes, we have an enemy who is out to undermine the good work done in the Kingdom of God. Christians today need to be aware of the subtle tactics that Satan is employing against us, and be awake to these “wiles of the wicked one” (Ephesians 6:10-20). “Therefore He says: ‘Awake you who sleep, arise from the dead, and Christ will give you light.’ See then that you walk circumspectly (“carefully”), not as fools but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is” (Ephesians 5:14-17).
Christian, it is time to arise and fulfil your calling in Jesus Christ! We have a harvest to gather in! It is no time for sleeping! It is time to invest our time and resources into getting the Gospel Message to the nations while the doors are still open! We can reach the lost! We can make a difference! Ask God to show you what He has called you to be and do. Sitting in church without any active involvement in the purposes of Jesus Christ is a form of deception. God does not want us to be guilty of being “a saved soul, but a wasted life!” Every one of us has been given the Great Commission to take this Glorious Message of Jesus Christ to the ends of the earth. People are hungry . . . crying out . . . waiting for us to take the life-changing Message of Jesus to them! Will that be you? If you cannot go, you can pray, you can give and be a worker together with others to enable them to take the Message in printed and spoken form. See the need; know the Commission of Jesus and be actively involved in fulfilling it. This is your hour to respond and act like never before! I pray that God will speak to all who read this.