The Evil of Our Day
In Malachi 1:2 the Lord declares His love for His people, but the people respond in a very shocking way; “How have you loved us?” The people hearing Malachi's words couldn't understand why God hadn't fulfilled His promises. What's He waiting for, can things get any worse?
The Evil of Our Day
"I have loved you," says the Lord.
In Malachi 1:2 the Lord declares His love for His people, but the people respond in a very shocking way; “How have you loved us?” To put this reply in perspective you should read Haggai 2:20-23 and scan through Zechariah taking note of all the promises made concerning Israel's future. Some 100 years later things had gone from bad to worse. Very few of these prophesies had come true. The people hearing Malachi's words couldn't understand why God hadn't fulfilled His promises. What's He waiting for, can things get any worse?
These questions are being asked by many today! It's been over 2,000 years and we are living in evil days that arguably rival or exceed the evil of Malachi's day. When bad things happen in our world or in our lives we may be tempted to ask “How have you loved me?” We wonder why God allows evil to prosper. We must first remember that all things happen according to God's timeline not ours. Second, we must redeem the time God so graciously gives us.
If we decide God should work within our timeline we are saying “prove your love to me by giving me...” in essence we are saying “how has God loved me? He failed to meet my expectations.” It's natural to want to live in a world with no sickness, financial prosperity and peace for all. However, God's Word is clear “evil men and impostors will proceed from bad to worse” (2 Tim. 3:13). The situation is not going to become better. The world is blacker and more expressive of its vices than ever before. This brings us to the second point we must have a sense of urgency and redeem the time.
Because the days were evil, the apostle Paul wanted the church at Ephesus to redeem the time and walk wisely (Eph. 5:15-16). A little more than thirty years after Paul wrote his letter to the Ephesian church, the apostle John wrote more to them, saying, “You have left your first love.... Repent and do the deeds you did at first; or else I [Christ] am coming to you, and will remove your lampstand out of its place-unless you repent” (Rev. 2:4-5). But the Ephesians did not repent, and the lampstand was removed. Their time was shorter than they believed, because the evil was so great. Their church fell prey to the time in which they lived and, not sensing the urgency to return to its first love, eventually went out of existence.
No man knows the details of God's timeline and we can't miss the fact that our times are evil. Therefore, let's work within God's timeline, making our first love our priority as we redeem the time regardless of the evil in our world. Finally, praise God we have the power of the Holy Spirit, without which we will not succeed.