Summary: Just like the followers of Jesus’ day, we feel the pressures of troubling times in our day. We need to stay encouraged by the Word of God because it may get a lot worse before it gets any better.

Staying Encouraged in Troubling Times

By Greg Johnson

What a horrid week around the world that this 2nd week of July 2006 has been. There were terrorist train bombings in India that killed 200 and wounded 700. Three Israeli soldiers were captured and taken prisoner; one by Hamas in Gaza and two by Hizbullah in Lebanon. This lead Israel to a thrift military response as it seeks the release of these soldiers and the removal of Hizbullah from Lebanon. Now there are missiles being fired back and forth as the crisis escalates. Add on top of all of that, the continual loss of life due to terrorism in Iraq and Afghanistan; North Korea, who has nuclear capabilities, testing long range missiles; And Iran who is seeking nuclear capabilities and the total destruction of Israel.

In our day, hatred for Israel and Christianity grows around the world as the world grows increasingly out of step with the Gospel. These are truly troubling times. In Jesus’ day, His followers where also faced with troubling times as they lived under Roman oppression. They asked Jesus what would be the sign of His coming and the end of the age? (Matthew 24:4-13 NIV) "Jesus answered: "Watch out that no one deceives you. {5} For many will come in my name, claiming, ’I am the Christ, ’ and will deceive many. {6} You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. {7} Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. {8} All these are the beginning of birth pains. {9} "Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of me. {10} At that time many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other, {11} and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people. {12} Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold, {13} but he who stands firm to the end will be saved." Just like the followers of Jesus’ day, we feel the pressures of troubling times in our day. We need to stay encouraged by the Word of God because it may get a lot worse before it gets any better.

Have you ever been reading a good book and was tempted to skip to the last chapter and read how it ends? Well today, I want you to be encouraged by going to the last chapter of God’s Word to see how it ends.


Jesus says (Revelation 22:12-13 NIV) ""Behold, I am coming soon! My reward is with me, and I will give to everyone according to what he has done. {13} I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End."

Jesus is coming! Not only did Jesus say that He is coming, but He says that He is “coming soon.” The redemption of His followers is nearer today than it was yesterday! To stay encouraged in troubling times continually remind your self that Jesus is coming.


Jesus continues and says (Revelation 22:14-15 NIV) "Blessed are those who wash their robes, that they may have the right to the tree of life and may go through the gates into the city. {15} Outside are the dogs, those who practice magic arts, the sexually immoral, the murderers, the idolaters and everyone who loves and practices falsehood."

There is only one way to live in the New Jerusalem; believe in what Jesus did for us at the cross and apply it to our life. That is how we wash our robes. We must take upon our self Jesus’ righteousness because we have none. The Bible says (2 Corinthians 5:21 NIV) “God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God." We must make Jesus our Lord and our Savior taking His righteousness upon us. We must follow Jesus in total obedience. We must obey Jesus’ word, His will and His example. As we do, we wash our robes and we will be blessed.

Please note that the only time we can wash our robes is now. After Jesus returns, it’s too late to wash our robes. Truly today is the day of salvation. To stay encouraged in troubled times we must wash our robes and be ready for His return.


The final verse in the last chapter of the Bible says (Revelation 22:21 NIV) “The grace of the Lord Jesus be with God’s people. Amen."

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