TITLE: Getting Colder
DATE: August 6, 2019
TEXT: Matthew 24: 9-13 – ESV - Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and put you to death, and you will be hated by all nations for my name's sake. 10 And then many will fall away[a] and betray one another and hate one another. 11 And many false prophets will arise and lead many astray. 12 And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold. 13 But the one who endures to the end will be saved.
When people say, “God’s love for me will never grow cold; they are absolutely correct.
When people say, “Their love for the Lord will never grow cold, their footing isn’t nearly as solid. You see some times what seems to be impossible can happen. Go back in time to March 29, 1848. The place is Niagara Falls.
People living around the falls, were awakened by the unusual sound of....silence. Word went quickly from house to house: the Falls had ceased to flow. Some brave souls threw on clothes and ran to the river. Their lamps and flares showed great stretches of mud and bare boulders rather than a racing river. By the next afternoon, multitudes lined the river banks and explored the drying bed.
The impossible had happened. Niagara Falls had stopped.
Unknown to them, during the day, tons of ice from Lake Erie had dammed the river’s entrance. For almost 30 hours water stopped flowing. To the uninformed residents around the Falls, it seemed like a dangerous omen. That night, most of the churches were packed with people praying and whispering about the end of the world. Fear was becoming panic.
Then, from down the river bed came the low growling of an approaching wall of water. The falls restarted; faces softened; and people began to forget how coldness had dammed up Niagara Falls.
Now, if something like mighty Niagara can be stopped; I wonder if it is possible for the love of people for the Lord to grow cold and stop. We’ve already agreed nothing can stop God’s love for us.
That love which was first shown, in promise, to Adam and Eve; which was brought to fulfillment on the cross of Calvary, cannot be frozen. It will always flow.
But our love toward Him is another matter. Satan and sin have been around for a long time. They have mastered the art of temptation and know how to package vileness. They can wrap wickedness so wonderfully that it appears to be almost a virtue.
Even worse, experience has shown them our particular weakness. They know what works on one fellow will fall flat when it comes to another. On our own we cannot resist.
The only hope we have is to trust the Spirit to keep warm our love toward Jesus Who has saved us. Holding fast to this, when Jesus asks of us, “Will your love also grow cold?”; we can reply, “Cold may kill a car; dam up a river, but, by Your grace, it shall not kill me.”
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, my love toward You is, never as warm as it should be. Warm me, and transform me so the frost of wickedness may have no effect upon me or those around me. In Your Name. Amen.
The music which introduces and concludes our devotions was written by Guy Baumann. He along with three of his brothers perform on the album: The Baumann Brothers which may be ordered here: http://thebaumannbrothers.com/index.html