How good are you at interpreting the signs of the times? What are the signs of the times we are living in?
We live in a time of blessing and a time of curse, a time of plenty and a time of want, a time of social media and yet a time of deep loneliness and despair. Among the blessings of our age are technology, medical advancement and wealth generation which ensures a good quality of life for many. Among the curses is the reality that the rich are getting richer and the poor poorer, so that the disparity between the haves and the have-nots is increasing day by day. Other curses are the prevailing world views which stand in opposition to God, such as hedonism (a love of pleasure), relativism (there is no right or wrong) and secularism (this world is all there is). And, in sharp contrast, the religious fundamentalism which creates terrorists who are prepared to murder, maim and destroy, all in the name of God. God knows we need wisdom to interpret the signs of the times.
One sign of the times that never changes is that the kingdom of God is near. The kingdom of Christ is always near because God the Father is closer to us than we are to ourselves. This kingdom – the kingdom of truth, justice, love and upholding human dignity – cries out to be witnessed to. Never has there been a greater need to witness to Christ and the power of his word. In these times people are desperate to cling to that which is solid, reliable and everlasting, and that which is solid, reliable and everlasting are the words of Christ.
The primary task of every believer is to make known the words of Christ. We are to be signs of contradiction, men and women who bear witness to a different way of living. Where the sign says ‘hate’, we must put ‘love’; where it says ‘division’, we must put ‘unity’; where it says ‘envy and jealousy’ we must bear witness to the love of God being poured into our hearts. The greatest sign of our time is the sign of joy and the witness of mercy. Ask yourself: are you a sign of God’s joy in the world? Are you a sign of God’s mercy in the world?
Lord, make me a sign of your love as I seek to serve the world in the power of the Holy Spirit.
Daniel 7:2-14 • Daniel 3:75-81