Spiritually Cold (Matthew 24:9-12) – PART 1
Matthew 24:9-12, Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name's sake. And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another. And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many. And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.
A man huddled on a cabin floor was slowly freezing to death. It was high in the Rockies in southwestern Alberta, and outside a blizzard raged. John Elliott had logged miles that day through the deep snow of the mountain passes. As he checked for avalanches, and as dusk and exhaustion overcame him, he decided to rest. He made it wearily to his cabin, but somewhat dazed with fatigue, he did not light a fire or remove his wet clothing. As the blizzard blasted through the cracks in the old cabin walls, the sleeping forest ranger sank into oblivion, paralyzed by the pleasure of the storm's icy caress. He began the gentle downward spiral of hypothermia. Suddenly, however, his dog sprang into action, and with unrelenting whines, finally managed to rouse his near-comatose friend. The dog was John's constant companion, a St. Bernard, one of a long line of dogs famous for their heroics in times of crisis. "If that dog hadn't been with me, I'd be dead today," John Elliott says. "When you're freezing to death you actually feel warm all over, and don't wake up because it feels too good."
This illustrates the spiritual condition of many Christians today. They are cold spiritually, and sadly, are oblivious of their true condition. Thank God for all the ways in which He arouses such sleepers. Christ warns the believer who lets their love grow cold. As sin increases, the love of many will become cold. We must not allow ourselves to be deceived by the apostasy of others. When iniquity abounds among those who profess to be followers of Christ, and those who once appeared to burn with love and zeal for his name have become altogether indifferent to it, let us seek the company and companionship of those who yet seek to honor our Master, lest we be under the influence by the poison that is in the hearts of the apostate. The pollution spoken of here is not the pollution that environmentalists get upset about, it is the pollution God gets upset about, namely, "iniquity." The pollution of apostasy corrupts the environment more than any other pollution.
There are several things can dampen one's love for God. Here are a three:
1. Materialism: Many will seek what they want and what the world offers instead of sacrificing and serving. They just choose to satisfy their own desires and worldly urges instead of seeking diligently after God.
2. Dissension: Many just cool off and back away even if the truth is under attack, some will withdraw rather than take a stand for the truth.
3. Persecution: Many go through a sinking of spirit and affection simply because they cannot understand why God would let such trials happen. Only a real belief and conviction will stand up under ridicule.
PRAYER: Father, help me guard my heart from waxing cold due to sin and spiritual neglect. Help me to crave a fervent desire for You when things are going bad and the world seems to be caving in. In Jesus name, AMEN!
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Dr. Blackman is passionate about helping others grow in the grace of the Lord. His devotions are centered on how to grow closer to the Lord through a personal relationship with Christ.