Chapter 1: 1-10
“Paul, Silvanus, and Timothy, To the church of the Thessalonians in God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ: 2 Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
3 We are bound to thank God always for you, brethren, as it is fitting, because your faith grows exceedingly, and the love of every one of you all abounds toward each other, 4 so that we ourselves boast of you among the churches of God for your patience and faith in all your persecutions and tribulations that you endure, 5 which is manifest evidence of the righteous judgment of God, that you may be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which you also suffer; 6 since it is a righteous thing with God to repay with tribulation those who trouble you, 7 and to give you who are troubled rest with us when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with His mighty angels, 8 in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who do not know God, and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.
9 These shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power, 10 when He comes, in that Day, to be glorified in His saints and to be admired among all those who believe, because our testimony among you was believed.”
I pray that you are all well. As much as we can see that COVID is being used by the powers that be to control us, take away our God-given freedoms and re-shape our society, that does not change the fact that COVID is a real virus. I have lost dear friends, and I have a dear Brother who is very sick with COVID right now in Indiana. Take time to pray for the many that are suffering, not just with COVID, but with the fallout from COVID. The lost businesses, the delayed medical treatments, and the many who have died alone with no one to hold their hands or say ‘I love you” or say ‘goodbye.’ We just had a dear friend, a neighbor whose mom fell, broke her hip, and somehow ended up in a coma. But because of COVID restrictions, that woman could not be visited by her loved one and died alone.
I fear that these emotional scars, even among the saved, will not go away quickly. Wow, Pastor Sean, all the gloom! Man, it is Christmas; put a little joy into us for the season.
Over the past few weeks at our church, we have been doing a series called The Manger, The Mountain, and the Millennium. Sadly, many churches do not teach on the Millennium very much; it is tedious work, and there is a lot of Old Testament scriptures that need to be read and studied. But if you are a student of prophecy, you will know that the next big thing after the Rapture is the Millennium. There is no Millennium without the Manger where Jesus was born and no Millennium without the Mountain of Calvary where Jesus died. All too often, the Christmas story stops when the Wise men show up, in the minds of many people. But no one thinks that play out, that they came looking for the King of the Jews, not the Saviour of the World (read Matthew 2:2).
To carry this thought all the way through, Jesus was executed for being the King of the Jews (read Matthew 27:37); the plaque displayed the charge against Him. While we in the New Testament era are excited about the Manger and the birth of our Saviour, and we are just as thankful for the Mountain and the sacrificial death of our Saviour, and we celebrate the resurrection of our Saviour, the true Christmas story ends with Jesus ascending the throne of David, as the rightful, legal King of the Jews and the Ruler of the whole world. Paul spent a lot of time talking about this, and we should spend time on it as well. The birth of Jesus was not just about saving a few billion people; it was about transforming the whole creation that was surrendered when Adam sinned.
- Trouble before triumph, verse 5
One of the hardest things to come to grips with is that we who trust in Jesus as Saviour, we who are indwelt by the Holy Spirit, are going to have to face some hardships before we see Jesus. Our faith and our beliefs will be tested. Some will be tested in small ways and others in big and maybe painful ways.
If you have been following the news, you will know that a statue was revealed outside the UN building in New York that resembles the end-time beasts described in both Daniel 7 and Revelation 13. If you have followed my writing over the years, I and many others have shown that the EU parliament buildings are deliberately designed to look like the unfinished Tower of Babel. Our enemies no longer hide in the shadows; they reveal their hands and run most of the world’s governments.
These people know who God is, they know the Bible, and yet they deny God to His face. One day they will turn with full malice on us, the Lord’s children; we can’t kill God; maybe we can hurt Him by killing His children. Satan cannot deny God. Without God, there is no Satan. But he will not bow to God except at the end. While we see a growth of atheism among the young people of our world, the true leaders are anything but atheists; their god is either themselves or Lucifer, but they have a god they worship. In John 8:44, Satan is called ‘the father of all lies.’ Those of us that have the truth in us via the Holy Spirit see the lies all around us. We can see the lies that are being told over and over again to the masses. It is sad to see how many saved people have fallen for the lies.
Our governments may be piling on higher interest rates. I just saw that the Bank of Canada is seriously considering raising interest rates. So, they have bankrupted a lot of companies, and our government has borrowed billions of dollars to pay people to stay home. And now, rather than get the economy going, they are about to raise interest rates to help put the final nails in the coffins for a lot of people. This COVID pandemic, a man-made pandemic, has been used to perpetuate the largest transfer of wealth in the history of man.
There will be no good to come from what is happening, no good whatsoever. Governments never relinquish the power that they have taken. As long as they can keep a state of emergency for whatever reason, they will; they simply will. It is the only way to circumvent the electorate. One day, these governments will turn full force on us, the redeemed. We are the last bastions of the truth, and their leader, Satan, knows it. We must be eradicated for the whole thing to fall into place. As such, we can see that the infrastructure for the Mark of the Beast is being set up.
I have heard some things about the 5G set-up from one of the Samsung engineers here in Ontario setting up the 5G system. It is about tracking and the vaccines; however, I still need to do some more research. But we know for sure that the governments of the world will be able to know who takes the Mark of the Beast and who does not, then they will track down the ones who don’t and kill them.
Long before we get to the Tribulation, the heat will be turned up on saved people. In a world of lies, the truth-tellers are the enemy. We should be the enemy of lies. Sadly, a lot of modern churches have bowed to the ‘woke’ ideas, and they are denying the basic fundamental truths of the Bible. These are not true churches, and if you are saved, you need to get out and run from these churches; their pastors are wolves in sheep’s clothing, and they are a part of the enemy. Read the book of Revelation; the Anti-Christ does not eliminate religion; he seeks to be the god of the world.
- Trouble will be repaid, verses 6 and 7
God is a protective parent, and there are times when we must go through stuff for His glory and His plan, but God will deal with those that hurt His children. Babylon, Egypt and Assyria all had their day in court, so to speak, for hurting God’s people. The people we see on TV each day will have their day before God as well. The people who have schemed and plotted, those who have done evil in secret, will have their secrets revealed, and the Lord will repay them for their evil. They will not get away with it – maybe here, but not forever.
It is at times disheartening to see the crooks get promoted and become richer and richer right before our eyes. Not all the rich are crooks, but it seems that they never have to pay for crimes like the rest of us. But God is a righteous Judge, and He cannot be bought off or swayed by money or promises of power. No, their day will come, and all of their sins will be revealed; they will bow before Jesus and suffer for eternity.
You see, part of the Christmas story is not just about the Baby in a Manger; it is about the King of Kings making things right. But like every human king, our King of Kings begins as a baby, in a manger, in Bethlehem, born to a virgin, named Jesus, because He will save His people from their sins. We can have some solace that right and righteousness will prevail.
Paul and John promise us that one day Jesus will be revealed. Our faith will become sight. Our King, our Saviour, will return, and all the doubters will one day be believers, sadly, too late to change their eternity. One day we will live on earth in a world where righteousness is the prevailing law, and evil, though there, will not be the prevalent mindset. We know that evil will still be here in the hearts of men because Satan will be able to raise an army to attack Jesus at the end of the Millennium. This will be the final battle between man and God, between good and evil, between the dying and the living.
This is the hope that Jesus came to give us; this is the stuff that keeps us going when it seems that evil is prospering and the saved are the hunted. This is what keeps us going when the lies are shouted and believed and the truth is thwarted and has to be whispered.
The true Christmas story is not just about salvation; it is about victory. Good will triumph over evil; light will trump darkness; love will conquer hatred, and those of us on God’s side win. We win, now and forever. We win. Hold on; Jesus the King, not the Baby, is coming. Stay strong, hold on to the faith, and cherish the truth; Jesus is coming again.
Merry Christmas to you all. May the Lord bless you and keep you, may you feel His grace shine on you, and may you be blessed and be a blessing.
God bless you,
Dr. Sean Gooding
Pastor of Mississauga Missionary Baptist Church
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