KEEP CALM! DO NOT FRET!

downloadBeloved of God in Christ, DO NOT FRET because of evil doers (Psalm 37:1-6).

Recently, a rising anguish is pressing the minds and hearts of many of the faithful, concerning the responses and potential responses to the Covid-19 corona virus. This anguish is not without merit, as we understand the times we live in and their relationship to soon return of our King the Lord Jesus Christ.

Although most of my readers believe in the rapture of the church (as do I), it is no longer enough to believe that the church will be raptured, on flowery beds of ease, before we suffer anything of significance. Awareness of the persecuted church, whom our God loves as much as us Christians in America, has demolished the false idea, that “we will not suffer”. Scripture itself declares suffering for the testimony of Christ, is not an option we choose, but a guarantee from the Master Himself, to Christians in any age.

John 15:18-21 (NKJV) “If the world hates you, you know that it hated Me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love its own. Yet because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you. Remember the word that I said to you, A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you. If they kept My word, they will keep yours also. But all these things they will do to you for My name’s sake, because they do not know Him who sent Me.

Even in the inspired word of God through Paul, we see this truth…

Philippians 1:29-30 (NKJV) For to you it has been granted on behalf of Christ, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake, having the same conflict which you saw in me and now hear is in me.

2 Timothy 3:12 (NKJV) Yes, and all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution.

With this truth in view, it is more than understandable that Christians in America are beginning to consider the potential suffering we will face due to legislation and government orders associated with the corona virus. Let’s be honest, even in a pre-tribulation view of the rapture, we must agree that prior to His glorious in-gathering of the saints, there is persecution against the saints around the world.

Matthew 24:9-10 (NKJV) Then they will deliver you up to tribulation (means persecution) and kill you, and you will be hated by all nations for My name’s sake. And then many will be offended, will betray one another, and will hate one another.

Defining persecution does not mean only death for refusing to renouncing Christ, but also legal avenues of restricting the faith, with varying and increasing degrees of pressure. Consider sister Vera, who lives in a central Asian country and taught the Russian language at a state-run university. Vera was dismissed from her position for not recanting her faith in Christ, because they do not allow church members to teach. She now is trying to raise and provide for her children after being out of work for six months.

Persecution can take many uncomfortable and threatening forms. It is for this reason, I am writing, because contrary to what many Christian leaders have said, persecution has begun in America, with the corona virus response. Has it been terrible? No, not Yet! But the “not yet”, will most likely will become a “very soon the heat will be turned up”! This is a guarantee.

Rather than debate why, I desire this writing to be an encouragement to endure with joy for the sake of Christ, no matter what lies ahead.

One of the anguish producing decisions to being pushed through proper the congress is H.R. 6666.

In the first place, this bill does not allow the government to enter your home and force you to be tested or remove you if you refuse to be tested. I have read the bill and nothing in the language suggests this. The bill also does not say anything about vaccines, either voluntary or mandated. The bill does empower the Secretary of Health and human Services to award grants for eligible entities to become mobile testing sites, for the purpose of carrying out covid-19 tests in homes of participating residents.

For instance, this past week in Ohio letters were supposed to go out to 1200 randomly selected families as an invitation for antibody testing. Each letter contains a phone number to be called, in order to opt out of the random testing.

The bill itself, is seemingly innocuous, except for the seriously sinister numeric code it carries. Why all the hubbub?

Because the bill is seemingly innocuous and we have already seen state governments, with little or no constitutional authority destroy people’s lively hoods and restrict the free exercise of their religion. Let us therefore consider, for the sake of argument, mandatory vaccines will eventually be imposed. Does this rise to the level of the mark of the beast and if not, is it OK to get one?

In the first place, let me inform you that getting any vaccine is a risky proposition. No vaccine has ever eradicated any disease and with the vaccine there is risk of infection, because you are being injected with a dead virus.

Secondly, with all the flu vaccine being administered yearly, there are still hundreds of thousands of deaths from the flu, because vaccines are hit or miss.

Thirdly, it is important to remember that vaccines need to be synthesized and delivered in some formerly alive organism’s tissue. This is can be animal, but often is human.

Barbarically, with two vaccines administered to children, the dead virus is synthesized in the remains of an aborted children from 1960’s. These are the vaccines for chicken pox and hepatitis-A (VERIVAX and HAVRIX). If that is not disturbing enough, last week an bioethicist, in England, sounded the alarm that a possible corona virus close to being tested in England, had been synthesized in the remains of an aborted child from the 1970’s (As reported in the Christian Post; link below). (https://www.christianpost.com/news/bioethicists-warn-against-potential-covid-19-vaccines-using-cells-from-aborted-babies.html?fbclid=IwAR2HNliU05OHIRQfwwyw8-q2y42sCR0dIOajsci3xuEqWivMY0rg1gbi3Rg)

The point is, if you are a follower of the Lord Jesus Christ, you ought to prayerfully consider whether you ought to receive any vaccine; for your life is not your own you were bought with a price.

Considering the circumstances surrounding covid-19; is it plausible that the governments of the world would mandate their citizens to be vaccinated against their will? Could it be that the introduction of nano technology in said vaccine and introduction of a chip, tattoo or mark may be the mark of the beast?

Instead of answering those questions let us consider some biblical truths which apply in any age.

In the first place, remember that the spirit of Antichrist has been around long before our day.

1 John 4:1-3 (NKJV) Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world. By this you know the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is of God, and every spirit that does not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is not of God. And this is the spirit of the Antichrist, which you have heard was coming, and is now already in the world.

With that in mind let us examine the passage referring to the mark of the beast I Revelation 13…

Revelation 13:14-18 (NKJV) And he deceives those who dwell on the earth by those signs which he was granted to do in the sight of the beast, telling those who dwell on the earth to make an image to the beast who was wounded by the sword and lived. He was granted power to give breath to the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak and cause as many as would not worship the image of the beast to be killed. He causes all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hand or on their foreheads, and that no one may buy or sell except one who has the mark or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. Here is wisdom. Let him who has understanding calculate the number of the beast, for it is the number of a man: His number is 666.

It is important to understand from the passage above the power of free will, given by God to man. Those who are killed, in the above passage, are those who would not bow to worship the beast. Meaning they had a choice. They could have sought to save their lives for a time and lost their soul or chose to lose their life for the sake of Christ and hence gain Christ and his kingdom.

The mark of the beast also comes with a choice. Whatever that mark is, (and I agree the technology exists and looks like it may be implemented in some way soon) a person may choose to receive it, in order to eat and gain provision; or refuse it for Christ’s sake and have no food and provision.

Now I did not use this passage to rain on anyone’s rapture parade. I have friends in Christ who run the gamut of pre-tribulational rapture, mid-tribulational and even pre-wrath rapture and all of them love the Lord and in my opinion with be with Jesus and me, when the roll is called up yonder. I do believe that the events of suffering against His church to come will change the “we will not suffer” crowd emphasis on escaping suffering and personal ease as a blessing. We must prepare for difficulty in order to endure.

Through out history, the church has come under unspeakable torture on Christ’s behalf. The great cloud of witnesses before us have been crucified, beheaded, drawn an quartered, disembowel, shot, speared, bow and arrowed, tortured, burned at the stake, broken on the rack, skinned alive, placed in solitary confinement for years, buried alive, been made to watch their family murdered in front of them, had to watch other Christians murdered in front of them, been starved to death, lost livelihood and had to trust God alone.

Do we Christians in America believe we are, in some way, more blessed or elite than they, for some reason clearly not articulated in God’s word? The answer is a thousand times no! We will have our day as well and as the spirit of Antichrist was in operation in the times of apostles (and before), there will be hindrance, restrictions, threats and yes loss associated with our choice to follow Christ.

Is it possible that an unconstitutional order of mandatory vaccine come to the citizenry of America, with the caveat, that should we refuse we will not be able to work or meet as the church is commanded, or obtain food or provision? You better believe it!

Always remember you will still have a choice and as bad as the choice may be (from a temporary standpoint), it is still His gift of choice to us. How do we decide, if it is not the mark of the beast?

Luke 9:23-25 (NKJV) Then He said to them all, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me. For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will save it. For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and is himself destroyed or lost?

Trust that our God and Father will maintain our right to choose Christ over any Antichrist world system program. We choose Him and bear the consequence of that choice. The reward is more glorious and blessed than anything suffered in this life.

So, don’t fret and be careful not to freak over every YOU TUBE video. There is a lot of truth to be heard, but there are some half-truths that half-cock undiscerning Christians. When we shoot half-cocked, we only diminish our Savior’s glory.

Psalms 37:1-4, 8-10 (NKJV) ​ Do not fret because of evildoers, Nor be envious of the workers of iniquity. For they shall soon be cut down like the grass, And wither as the green herb. Trust in the LORD, and do good; Dwell in the land, and feed on His faithfulness. Delight yourself also in the LORD, And He shall give you the desires of your heart. 

… Do not fret because of him who prospers in his way, Because of the man who brings wicked schemes to pass. Cease from anger and forsake wrath; Do not fret—it only causes harm. For evildoers shall be cut off; But those who wait on the LORD, They shall inherit the earth. For yet a little while and the wicked shall be no more; Indeed, you will look carefully for his place, But it shall be no more. But the meek shall inherit the earth, And shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace.

(If you have not seen my last video message from John 9 click here to watch Religious or Right! Which one are you?)

About Michael J Erdel

Mike is a pastor with The Assembly of God Fellowship. He is the lead pastor at Encounter Church in Fostoria Ohio. His desire is to encourage the Church of Jesus Christ, and declare God's hope through His Son Jesus, to a world which is long on excuses and short on hope. Mike has experienced the truth that when we kneel before Christ, surrendering to Him as Savior and LORD, being led and empowered by His Spirit. To Jesus Christ be all glory and honor.
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1 Response to KEEP CALM! DO NOT FRET!

  1. Jamey Doss says:

    Brother Mike,

    Thank You for this candid truth that the true body of Christ should receive as a bold warning tomprepare themselves for the soon coming persecution of Christians in America.

    Like

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