SUCH A TIME AS THIS - by Paul M Hanssen
The world is facing a pandemic which has reached over one hundred and fifty countries in all four corners of the globe. The unprecedented effect that the COVID-19 is having upon the global community is nothing short of staggering. Only two months ago, the plague that the world is witnessing was only imaginable in sci-fi movies, read about in novels, and heard about in stories considered to be outlandish and unreasonable. Yet, here we are, in such a time as this; a time and an experience that few ever believed could actually happen in reality.
In the midst of this crisis, there are many voices within the religious community who are proclaiming and exclaiming comforting prophetic promises of God’s Word. On one side, there is nothing wrong with that. Truth is Truth and Truth should always be embraced. It is a good thing to speak the powerful promises that are in God’s Word upon which we can stand. But, is that what the church needs to hear in such a time as this?
2 Timothy 3:1-5
This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, Traitors, heady, high-minded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.
We live in a world that has excluded God from government, from society at large, from educational systems, from homes, from individual lives and from churches. Every area of present-day reality that has pushed God out of His domain, as the sovereign ruler, is being touched and affected by the global pandemic. The verses quoted above, written by the Apostle Paul to his spiritual son Timothy, are actually unfolding right before our very eyes. Mankind has become self-centered; immorality is on the rise; and false religious forms that deny God’s power, have overtaken the church. These end-time prophetic words are being fulfilled in such a time as this. We should not be looking for these things to happen down the pike; they are happening now.
What is God saying during these perilous times? The call to God’s people is “from such turn away”. This is not the time to lean back in relaxation and claim promises that fail to gouge and prick the conscience into action. We cannot simply embrace comforting words that do not relate to the season that we are walking through. Nor do we need to be speaking words of peace that are contrary to what the voice of God is saying in such time as this. In such a time as this, we, God’s people, need to turn away, turn around, change direction, humble ourselves, repent, and put God back in His place as the Master and ruler of this world, and of course in particular of His church and of our personal lives.
At such a time as this, are we listening to the heartbeat of God, or are we still occupying our time with, and for self? God has granted us a time, as this, to be “shut in” with Him. It is a time where everything seems to be on "pause". This period of time is the perfect opportunity to find Him and to connect with Him once again. Revivals are born out of, “such a time as this”! However, whether or not a revival breaks out depends upon whether an awakening takes place. An awakening will not take place unless we are listening to what God is saying and responding to His voice in such a time as this!