Rabbi’s Reflections – Saturday, December 31, 2022
Day 26: Evening
Most People’s Love Will Grow Cold
What a prophecy…
Because lawlessness will multiply, the love of many will grow cold. (Matthew 24:12 TLV)
Compared to the “civilization” in which pre–70 A.D. believers found themselves, we have it pretty good. For those with eyes to see, we are surrounded by idolatry. However, we don’t have huge temples set up for idols in our cities where fearful people pay reverent homage. We tend to rely upon the state for stability, but generally speaking our leaders are not worshiped as deities. We have sports arenas packed with people, but nothing compares to the Coliseums and arenas of Rome. People may mock, but we’re not being crucified, covered with tar and set alight. We may be a marginalized minority, but the percentage of those who claim to honor the Messiah is huge compared to the number of disciples existing when the New Covenant Scriptures were written. Our societal influence has waned. The early believer’s temporal influence was nonexistent.
Yet, ancient moral boundaries have been erased. The conviction that people are responsible for their actions has weakened. Ruthlessness revealed in abortuaries abounds. Unadorned ambition is lauded. Lawlessness is found in government and encouraged in the streets. Categories disappear, truth is confounded. People are confused. People are angry. It is really bad. The days of Noah and Sodom have synergized. It is becoming more costly to follow Yeshua and identify with the Gospel.
Lawlessness has increased.
The Prophet, Yeshua, said that in the end times lawlessness would increase and the love of most people (the many) shall cool down. The believing communities have been warned against lukewarmness and admonished to preserve their first love. Paul prophesied a catastrophic moral collapse.
But understand this, that in the last days hard times will come— for people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, hardhearted, unforgiving, backbiting, without self-control, brutal, hating what is good, treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, holding to an outward form of godliness but denying its power. (2 Timothy 3:1-5a TLV)
This is not Paul providing a commentary on his contemporary culture. It is written “that in the last days difficult times willcome.” The pagan world was corrupt. Paul said that its corruption would be contagious. Within the believing community people would hold “to a form of godliness.”
Okay, so there is “a form of godliness.” Here’s a question: What is the heart of godliness? What is the substance of holiness? The Messiah informed us. Yeshua said:
And you shall love Adonai your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength. (Mark 12:30 TLV)
That is the heart of godliness.
We live in a world wherein the love of most will cool down. In fact, I think it is growing colder. I do not want to be affected by that breeze. Do you? What can we do? We can seek the Lord. He will let us find Him. We need His help to love Him more. He will definitely help us. He wants to relationally empower us to overcome this adversarial cosmos. And recall, our love for Him is valuable to Him. Remember, He has called us to come to Him.
Come to Me, all who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. (Matthew 11:28 TLV)
The worries of this world can exhaust the strength of our love for God. As we go to Yeshua, we experience rest that restores.
We’re promised that as we draw near to Him, He will draw near to us.
Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. (James 4:8a TLV)
We are called to seek Him.
When You said, “Seek My face,” my heart said to You, “Your face, O Lord, I shall seek.” (Psalm 27:8 NAU)
As we search for Him, we can plead with Him for help. Here’s the next verse in that psalm.
Do not hide Your face from me. Do not turn Your servant away in anger. You have been my help. Do not abandon me or forsake me, O God my salvation. (Psalm 27:9 TLV)
The Spirit of the Lord has been imparted to us to help us. Moral holiness is His nature. The great imperative, the priority command, can be fulfilled.
As we seek Him, we find Him. Don’t wait.
Seek Adonai while He may be found; call on Him while He is near. (Isaiah 55:6 TLV)
Daily Bread, reading plan by Lars Enarsson (https://www.thewatchman.org/)
Sat 31-Dec-2022 7th of Tevet, 5783 Parashat Vayigash
Ge 47:11-27 Ez 37:15-28 Ac 3:11-26