Spirit of change that will end in utter condemnation

We post this article, just completed, with the prayer that you will find it helpful and instructive.

I attach a headline just sent to me this morning by a friend which serves to illustrate the central point of my article – the evil changes that are abroad in the world today, especially within the camp of professing ‘Christianity’!

New Jersey diocese agrees to pay $87.5m settlement to 300 alleged abuse victims

Agreement between diocese of Camden and plaintiffs is one of largest cash settlements involving Catholic church in US

The Lord bless you all,

Ivan Foster.

Adam and Eve cast from the garden


Meddle not with them that are given to change,” Proverbs 24:21.

Something that is much contradicted by the enemies of the Bible is its character. It is a Book of enlightenment and instruction. Far from it being the source of ignorance and superstition and myth, as alleged by its detractors, the Bible was written for our “‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭learning‭, that‭ we‭‭ through‭ patience‭ and‭ comfort‭ of the scriptures‭ might have‭‭ hope‭,‭” Romans 15:4. The ‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬entrance‭ of God’s words‭ ‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭into the heart and mind “‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬giveth light‭‭; it giveth understanding‭‭ unto the simple‭,‭” Psalm 119:130.‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ Ignorance amongst His people is no part of God’s purpose. “‭For‭ I would‭‭ not‭, brethren‭, that ye‭ should be ignorant‭‭,‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭” Romans 11:25. “‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬Moreover‭, brethren‭, I would‭‭ not‭ that ye‭ should be ignorant‭‭,‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭” Corinthians 10:1. ‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

That sentiment is expressed throughout the Holy Scriptures. It is a feature of the Saviour’s ministry. “‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬For‭ he taught‭‭‭‭ them‭ as‭ ‭one‭ having‭‭ authority‭, and‭ not‭ as‭ the scribes‭,‭” Matthew 7:29. Ignorance and myth has ever marked the ministry of the unholy usurpers of the office of the preacher! That is so evident today throughout the so-called ‘Christian’ world. Ignorance and blindness mark the ministry of the sham ‘doctors of the law’ who fill the air with their ungodly notions and imaginings, as they falsely claim to speak for the Lord.‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ They bear all the accents of their father, “the devil”, “‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭for‭ he is‭‭ a liar‭, and‭ the father‭ of it‭,‭” John 8:44.‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

Amongst the first references to the rebellion led by the devil and into which man was later led by the temptation of Eve in the Garden of Eden, is that found in Jude 1:6. “And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day.”

Note the term used of how that rebellion first developed. The angels “kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation.” That is, they were created as beings elevated among the thrones, dominions, principalities, and powers; were a superior rank of creatures to men, and who beheld the face, and enjoyed the presence of God; but this estate they kept not, for being mutable creatures, one of them first sinning, the rest were drawn into it by him, and so were not what they were before, but left their own habitation; by attempting to rise higher; or by quitting their station and posts of honour, being unwilling to be subject to God, and especially to the Son of God, who was to assume human nature, and in it be above them, which they could not bear; and gathering together in a body, in another place, with Satan at the head of them. (Dr John Gill)

They were driven out of their native habitation, heaven; they were turned out of it, and cast down to hell. “For if God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment,” 2 Peter 2:4.

The essence of the spirit of that rebellion which engulfed the fallen angels and later mankind, is expressed in our text under the phrase, ‘given to change’.

I read this passage as part of my Bible reading on 6th April.

This ‘spirit of change’ is to be avoided by the child of God. In order to do that we must be acquainted with the meaning of the phrase and its pattern of development throughout the ages and recorded for our learning in God’s Word.

In Job 1:7 we read that in answer to the Lord’s question of what it was he was doing the devil said that he was busy “‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭going to and fro‭‭ in the earth‭, and from walking up and down‭‭ in it,‭” Job 1:7. That is very informative for it shows the restlessness of the devil. He cannot find a place of peace and satisfaction but is ever on the move, CHANGING his position in his search for contentment and happiness. ‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

That spirit has imbued ‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬all of the devil’s crowd since the fall into sin. On the other hand, contentment has ever marked those who are resting in Christ. That was never more evidently set forth than in the story of the conversion of the man of Gadara. His restlessness was all too obvious before he met Christ. “‭And‭ they came over‭‭ unto‭ the other side‭ of the sea‭, into‭ the country‭ of the Gadarenes‭.‭ ‭And‭ when he‭ was come‭‭ out of‭ the ship‭, immediately‭ there met‭‭ him‭ out of‭ the tombs‭ a man‭ with‭ an unclean‭ spirit‭,‭ ‭who‭ had‭‭ ‭his‭ dwelling‭ among‭ the tombs‭; and‭ no man‭ could‭‭ bind‭‭ him‭, no, not‭ with chains‭:‭ ‭because‭ that he‭ had been often‭ bound‭‭ with fetters‭ and‭ chains‭, and‭ the chains‭ had been plucked asunder‭‭ by‭ him‭, and‭ the fetters‭ broken in pieces‭‭: neither‭ could‭‭ any ‭man‭ tame‭‭ him‭‭.‭ ‭And‭ always‭, night‭ and‭ day‭, he was‭‭ in‭ the mountains‭, and‭ in‭ the tombs‭, crying‭‭, and‭ cutting‭‭ himself‭ with stones‭,‭” Mark 5:1-5. The change the grace of God made in him was likewise very evident. “‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬And‭ they come‭‭ to‭ Jesus‭, and‭ see‭‭ him that was possessed with the devil‭‭, and had‭‭ the legion‭, sitting‭‭, and‭ clothed‭‭, and‭ in his right mind‭‭: and‭ they were afraid‭‭,‭” Mark 5:15. Contentment and peace mark the man now and his restlessness is over. ‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

It is into that quietness of heart and mind that Christians are called by the gospel. “‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬If any man‭ teach otherwise‭‭, and‭ consent‭‭ not‭ to wholesome‭‭ words‭, ‭even‭ the words of our‭ Lord‭ Jesus‭ Christ‭, and‭ to the doctrine‭ which is according‭ to godliness‭;‭ ‭he is proud‭‭, knowing‭‭ nothing‭, but‭ doting‭‭ about‭ questions‭ and‭ strifes of words‭, whereof‭‭ cometh‭‭ envy‭, strife‭, railings‭, evil‭ surmisings‭,‭ ‭perverse disputings‭ of men‭ of corrupt‭‭ minds‭, and‭ destitute‭‭ of the truth‭, supposing‭‭ that gain‭ is‭‭ godliness‭: from‭ such‭ withdraw thyself‭‭.‭ ‭But‭ godliness‭ with‭ contentment‭ is‭‭ great‭ gain‭,‭” 1 Timothy 6:3-6.‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬An understanding of the chaotic events on the world scene today requires us to know what the Bible says about the ongoing ‘meddling with change’ that sinful man, spurred by the devil, is ever engaged in.‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬FROM THE BEGINNING ‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬Evidence of the longing for ‘change’ amongst fallen humanity is manifested in the earliest records of the Bible. The very first activities of Adam and Eve after their disobedience of God was to put forth their hands to alter and change God’s purpose for them. “‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬And the eyes‭ of them both‭ were opened‭‭, and they‭ knew‭‭ that they ‭were‭ naked‭; and they sewed‭‭ fig‭ leaves‭ together‭‭, and made themselves‭‭ aprons‭,‭” Genesis 3:7. Furthermore, “‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬And they heard‭‭ the voice‭ of the LORD‭ God‭ walking‭‭ in the garden‭ in the cool‭ of the day‭: and Adam‭ and his wife‭ hid themselves‭‭ from the presence‭ of the LORD‭ God‭ amongst‭ the trees‭ of the garden‭,‭” Genesis 3:8. Here is a demonstration of the beginnings of man’s discontentment with God’s order and a determination to change it to his own pleasing!‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

That spirit of changing what God had ordained for that which they desired was seen again and again. The Lord had promised them a deliverer. “‭And I will put‭‭ enmity‭ between thee and the woman‭, and between thy seed‭ and her seed‭; it shall bruise‭‭ thy head‭, and thou shalt bruise‭‭ his heel‭,‭” Genesis 3:15. He was to be the ‘seed of the woman’ and He would ‘bruise the head’ of the devil in utter triumph over him.‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

However, Eve could not wait God’s time and presumptuously supposed that her firstborn, Cain, was the promised seed. “‭And Adam‭ knew‭‭‭ Eve‭ his wife‭; and she conceived‭‭, and bare‭‭‭ Cain‭, and said‭‭, I have gotten‭‭ a man‭ from‭ the LORD‭,‭” Genesis 4:1.‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ How wrong she was in her audacious and hasty declaration.

“‭Not‭ as‭ Cain‭, ‭who‭ was‭‭ of‭ that wicked one‭, and‭ slew‭‭ his‭ brother‭,‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭” 1 John 3:12. Abel was a godly man, recognised as such by the devil‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ and he was likely suspected by him of being the promised seed that would be his conqueror and so he moved Cain to kill him.


The spirit of ‘meddling with change’ continued. Man has ever tried to interfere with God’s purpose and bring in his own plans and purposes. Virtually every chapter in the Bible gives evidence of this spirit. The rebelliousness that was seen in Eden continued accelerating downward until in chapter 6 we read: “‭And GOD‭ saw‭‭ that the wickedness‭ of man‭ ‭was‭ great‭ in the earth‭, and ‭that‭ every imagination‭ of the thoughts‭ of his heart‭ ‭was‭ only‭ evil‭ continually‭.‭ ‭And it repented‭‭ the LORD‭ that he had made‭‭ man‭ on the earth‭, and it grieved‭‭ him at‭ his heart‭.‭ ‭And the LORD‭ said‭‭, I will destroy‭‭ man‭ whom I have created‭‭ from the face‭ of the earth‭; both man‭, and‭ beast‭, and the creeping thing‭, and the fowls‭ of the air‭; for it repenteth‭‭ me that I have made‭‭ them,‭” Genesis 6:5-7. Man’s desire to change God’s ways led to corruption and violence. “‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬And God‭ looked‭‭ upon the earth‭, and, behold, it was corrupt‭‭; for all flesh‭ had corrupted‭‭ his way‭ upon the earth‭.‭ ‭And God‭ said‭‭ unto Noah‭, The end‭ of all flesh‭ is come‭‭ before me‭; for the earth‭ is filled with‭‭ violence‭ through them‭; and, behold, I will destroy‭‭ them with‭ the earth‭,‭” Genesis 6:12-13. These evils, in turn, brought about ‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬judgment.

It is hardly necessary to point out that such has been the trend throughout the ages. The Lord has, as it were, ‘kept a lid’ on man’s rebellion by ever intervening in judgment. Genesis 6 and 7, 10, 11:1-9 are early illustrations of this truth.

Other well known examples of the Lord containing man’s rebelliousness by His interventions may be seen in such chapters as Genesis 19 and the destruction of that city, the citizens of which chose to engage in an utter defiance of God and changed His ways as is displayed in ‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭Romans 1:21-32‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬. “‭Because‭ that, when they knew‭‭ God‭, they glorified‭‭ ‭him‭ not‭ as‭ God‭, neither‭ were thankful‭‭; but‭ became vain‭‭ in‭ their‭ imaginations‭, and‭ their‭ foolish‭ heart‭ was darkened‭‭.‭ ‭Professing themselves‭‭ to be‭‭ wise‭, they became fools‭‭,‭ ‭and‭ changed‭‭ the glory‭ of the uncorruptible‭ God‭ into‭ an image‭ made like‭ to corruptible‭ man‭, and‭ to birds‭, and‭ fourfooted beasts‭, and‭ creeping things‭.‭ ‭Wherefore‭ God‭ also‭ gave‭‭ them‭ up‭‭ to‭ uncleanness‭ through‭ the lusts‭ of their own‭ hearts‭, to dishonour‭‭ their own‭ bodies‭ between‭ themselves‭:‭ ‭who‭ changed‭‭ the truth‭ of God‭ into‭ a lie‭, and‭ worshipped‭‭ and‭ served‭‭ the creature‭ more than‭ the Creator‭‭, who‭ is‭‭ blessed‭ for‭ ever‭. Amen‭.‭ ‭For‭ this‭ cause God‭ gave‭‭ them‭ up‭‭ unto‭ vile‭ affections‭: for‭ even‭ their‭ women‭ did change‭‭ the natural‭ use‭ into‭ that which is against‭ nature‭:‭ ‭and‭ likewise‭ also‭ the men‭, leaving‭‭ the natural‭ use‭ of the woman‭, burned‭‭ in‭ their‭ lust‭ one toward another‭‭; men‭ with‭ men‭ working‭‭ that which is unseemly‭, and‭ receiving‭‭ in‭ themselves‭ that recompence‭ of their‭ error‭ which‭ was meet‭‭.‭ ‭And‭ even as‭ they did‭‭ not‭ like‭‭ to retain‭‭ God‭ in‭ ‭their‭ knowledge‭, God‭ gave‭‭ them‭ over‭‭ to‭ a reprobate‭ mind‭, to do‭‭ those things which are‭‭ not‭ convenient‭‭;‭ ‭being filled with‭‭ all‭ unrighteousness‭, fornication‭, wickedness‭, covetousness‭, maliciousness‭; full‭ of envy‭, murder‭, debate‭, deceit‭, malignity‭; whisperers‭,‭ ‭backbiters‭, haters of God‭, despiteful‭, proud‭, boasters‭, inventors‭ of evil things‭, disobedient‭ to parents‭,‭ ‭without understanding‭, covenantbreakers‭, without natural affection‭, implacable‭, unmerciful‭:‭ ‭who‭ knowing‭‭ the judgment‭ of God‭, that‭ they which commit‭‭ such things‭ are‭‭ worthy‭ of death‭, not‭ only‭ do‭‭ the same‭, but‭‭ have pleasure‭‭ in them that do‭‭ them.‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬This is the pattern and the outcome of man’s defiance of God throughout the ages and it is what we see at work today!‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ This is a day of change. I have seen it in my lifetime. Indeed, it is more than evident in the last forty years that a tidal wave of change has flooded the nation.

There has been political change. Politicians were ever driven by a sense of self-aggrandisement. But that has reached new depths in recent times. Such principles as were once evident at work in public life have been utterly abandoned and that without a blush! Undertakings are abandoned wholesale, lies of the most blatant kind fall from lips without hesitation or shame. Immoral relationships are engaged in and neither the public nor the guilty show the least concern!

The abandonment of principles and of public decency are evident at Stormont and Westminster on a daily basis with the adoption of laws and expressions of support for that which is contrary to God’s truth.

There have been changes in business ethics. The interests of tycoons and merchants are taken up entirely with profit-making, and that regardless of decency, honesty and the hardship caused to others. Business conglomerates rival elected governments in the directing of national affairs. The recent developments of our national affairs in relationship to the European Union are shrouded in lies, deception and see-sawing contradictions both by the EU officials and our own political leaders. The ‘isolating’ of Northern Ireland from the rest of the United Kingdom, of which we are supposed to be an integral part, by the ‘Protocol’ agreed by the United Kingdom and the EU, is evidence of the spirit of deceit that is abroad. The attempts to rectify the situation is a glaring and shameful display of futile protest, caused largely by the lack of a united purpose amongst Unionists!

There have been changes in public morality. Lack of chastity and impurity are engaged in without the least shame or apparent awareness of evil. Marriage is abandoned, immoral relationships are common and changed and abandoned with utter shamelessness. The slaughter of the unborn and the sanctioning of the most ungodly liaisons are on the nation’s main agenda! The daily newspaper reports of the activities of the public are unreadable by anyone with a conscience and a fear of God. It all testifies to the disappearance of the Bible from the mind of the nation.

There has been especially a change in the beliefs of the professing church. Simply put, there has been an abandonment of the Creeds and Confessions of the Reformation, that time of divine visitation when the nation, under God, rediscovered Bible Christianity.

Today, on a universal basis, the ‘established’ churches set forth the lie of the devil and preach apostasy. As it was in Israel of old, so it is today.

“‭Hath a nation‭ changed‭‭ ‭their‭ gods‭, which ‭are‭ yet no gods‭? but my people‭ have changed‭‭ their glory‭ for ‭that which‭ doth not profit‭‭.‭ ‭Be astonished‭‭, O ye heavens‭, at this, and be horribly afraid‭‭, be ye very‭ desolate‭‭, saith‭‭ the LORD‭.‭ ‭For my people‭ have committed‭‭ two‭ evils‭; they have forsaken‭‭ me the fountain‭ of living‭ waters‭, ‭and‭ hewed them out‭‭ cisterns‭, broken‭‭ cisterns‭, that can hold‭‭ no water‭,‭” Jeremiah 2:11-13.‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

“‭A wonderful‭ and horrible thing‭ is committed‭‭ in the land‭;‭ ‭the prophets‭ prophesy‭‭ falsely‭, and the priests‭ bear rule‭‭ by their means‭; and my people‭ love‭‭ ‭to have it‭ so: and what will ye do‭‭ in the end‭ thereof?‭” Jeremiah 5:30-31.‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

“‭Then the LORD‭ said‭‭ unto me, The prophets‭ prophesy‭‭ lies‭ in my name‭: I sent‭‭ them not, neither have I commanded‭‭ them, neither spake‭‭ unto them: they prophesy‭‭ unto you a false‭ vision‭ and divination‭, and a thing of nought‭‭‭, and the deceit‭ of their heart‭,‭” Jeremiah 14:14.‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬There are but few pulpits that remain faithful to God’s truth and fewer still that obey the command, “‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬Cry‭‭ aloud‭, spare‭‭ not, lift‭‭ up thy voice‭ like a trumpet‭, and shew‭‭ my people‭ their transgression‭, and the house‭ of Jacob‭ their sins‭,‭” Isaiah 58:1.‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬This time of ‘change’ is that spoken on in many places in the Holy Scriptures ‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬and referring to the ‘last days’.

I have often quoted Psalm 2 as one of the earliest references to the apostasy of the last days.

“‭Why do the heathen‭ rage‭‭, and the people‭ imagine‭‭ a vain thing‭?‭ ‭The kings‭ of the earth‭ set‭‭ themselves, and the rulers‭‭ take counsel‭‭ together‭, against the LORD‭, and against his anointed‭, ‭saying‭,‭ ‭Let us break‭‭ their bands‭ asunder‭‭, and cast away‭‭ their cords‭ from us,‭” Psalm 2:1-3.‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

That this passage refers to he final days of this age is evident from the response of God to the rebellion. “‭Thou shalt break‭‭ them with a rod‭ of iron‭; thou shalt dash them in pieces‭‭ like a potter’s‭‭ vessel‭,‭” verse 9. ‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬This is what the judgement in Noah’s day and again upon Sodom, prefigured. It is the final judgment of God upon the earth before He brings in the reign of righteousness under Christ.

Paul gives us a clear account of the ending of man’s rebellion and seeking after ‘change’.

“‭Now‭ we beseech‭‭ you‭, brethren‭, by‭ (concerning) the coming‭ of our‭ Lord‭ Jesus‭ Christ‭, and‭ ‭by‭ ‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬(concerning)‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ ‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭our‭ gathering together‭ unto‭ him‭,‭ ‭that‭ ye‭ be‭‭ not‭ soon‭ shaken‭‭ in‭ mind‭, or‭ be troubled‭‭, neither‭ by‭ spirit‭, nor‭ by‭ word‭, nor‭ by‭ letter‭ as‭ from‭ us‭, as‭ that‭ the day‭ of Christ‭ is at hand‭‭.‭ ‭Let‭‭ no‭ man‭ deceive‭‭ you‭ by‭ any‭ means‭: for‭ ‭that day shall not come‭, except‭ there come‭‭ a falling away‭ first‭, and‭ that man‭ of sin‭ be revealed‭‭, the son‭ of perdition‭;‭ ‭who‭ opposeth‭‭ and‭ exalteth‭‭ himself above‭ all‭ that is called‭‭ God‭, or‭ that is worshipped‭; so‭ that he‭ as‭ God‭ sitteth‭‭ in‭ the temple‭ of God‭, shewing‭‭ himself‭ that‭ he is‭‭ God‭.‭ ‭Remember ye‭‭ not‭, that‭, when I was‭‭ yet‭ with‭ you‭, I told‭‭ you‭ these things‭?‭ ‭And‭ now‭ ye know‭‭ what withholdeth‭‭ that‭ he‭ might be revealed‭‭ in‭ his‭ time‭.‭ ‭For‭ the mystery‭ of iniquity‭ doth‭‭ already‭ work‭‭: only‭ he who now‭ letteth‭‭ ‭will let‭, until‭ he be taken‭‭ out of‭ the way‭.‭ ‭And‭ then‭ shall‭‭ that Wicked‭ be revealed‭‭, whom‭ the Lord‭ shall consume‭‭ with the spirit‭ of his‭ mouth‭, and‭ shall destroy‭‭ with the brightness‭ of his‭ coming‭:‭ ‭even him‭, whose‭ coming‭ is‭‭ after‭ the working‭ of Satan‭ with‭ all‭ power‭ and‭ signs‭ and‭ lying‭ wonders‭,‭ ‭and‭ with‭ all‭ deceivableness‭ of unrighteousness‭ in‭ them that perish‭‭; because‭‭ they received‭‭ not‭ the love‭ of the truth‭, that‭ they‭ might be saved‭‭.‭ ‭And‭ for this‭ cause‭ God‭ shall send‭‭ them‭ strong‭ delusion‭, that‭ they‭ should believe‭‭ a lie‭:‭ ‭that‭ they all‭ might be damned‭‭ who‭ believed‭‭ not‭ the truth‭, but‭ had pleasure‭‭ in‭ unrighteousness‭,‭” 2 Thessalonians 2:1-12.‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬There we have what is at work today amongst the nations which defy God and how and when that rebellion will end.‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

For that day we wait and pray with patience and confidence.

One final matter. God is also engaged in a campaign of ‘change’. That is what the gospel is all about.

“‭Therefore‭ if any man‭ ‭be‭ in‭ Christ‭, ‭he is‭ a new‭ creature‭: old things‭ are passed away‭‭; behold‭‭, all things‭ are become‭‭ new‭,‭” 2 Corinthians 5:17. Such is the change the ‘new birth, of which Christ spoke (John 3:3,7) ‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬brings about.

That is followed by an ongoing spirit of change we call ’sanctification’.

“‭Now‭ the Lord‭ is‭‭ that Spirit‭: and‭ where‭ the Spirit‭ of the Lord‭ ‭is‭, there‭ ‭is‭ liberty‭.‭ ‭But‭ we‭ all‭, with open‭‭ face‭ beholding as in a glass‭‭ the glory‭ of the Lord‭, are changed‭‭ into the same‭ image‭ from‭ glory‭ to‭ glory‭, ‭even‭ as‭ by‭ the Spirit‭ of the Lord‭,‭” 2 Corinthians 3:17-18.‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

This process will, in turn, give way to that final and glorious change in the Christian wrought when Christ returns.

“‭Behold‭‭, I shew‭‭ you‭ a mystery‭; We shall‭‭ not‭ all‭‭ sleep‭‭, but‭ we shall‭‭ all‭ be changed‭‭,‭ ‭In‭ a moment‭, in‭ the twinkling‭ of an eye‭, at‭ the last‭ trump‭: for‭ the trumpet shall sound‭‭, and‭ the dead‭ shall be raised‭‭ incorruptible‭, and‭ we‭ shall be changed‭‭.‭ ‭For‭ this‭ corruptible‭ must‭‭ put on‭‭ incorruption‭, and‭ this‭ mortal‭ ‭must‭ put on‭‭ immortality‭.‭ ‭So‭ when‭ this‭ corruptible‭ shall have put on‭‭ incorruption‭, and‭ this‭ mortal‭ shall have put on‭‭ immortality‭, then‭ shall be brought to pass‭‭ the saying‭ that is written‭‭, Death‭ is swallowed up‭‭ in‭ victory‭.‭ ‭O death‭, where‭ ‭is‭ thy‭ sting‭? O grave‭, where‭ ‭is‭ thy‭ victory‭?‭” 1 Corinthians 15:51-55.‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

“‭For‭ our‭ conversation‭ is‭‭ in‭ heaven‭; from‭ whence‭ also‭ we look for‭‭ the Saviour‭, the Lord‭ Jesus‭ Christ‭:‭ ‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬Who‭ shall change‭‭ our‭ vile‭ body‭, that‭ it‭ may be‭‭ fashioned like unto‭ his‭ glorious‭ body‭, according to‭ the working‭ whereby he‭ is able‭‭ even‭ to subdue‭‭ all things‭ unto himself‭,‭” Philippians 3:20-21.‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬May you, dear reader, be one that is enjoying the changing power of the gospel with its final glorious triumph on that day we long for. “‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬Beloved‭, now‭ are we‭‭ the sons‭ of God‭, and‭ it doth‭‭ not yet‭ appear‭‭ what‭ we shall be‭‭: but‭ we know‭‭ that‭, when‭ he shall appear‭‭, we shall be‭‭ like‭ him‭; for‭ we shall see‭‭ him‭ as‭ he is‭‭,‭” 1 John 3:2.‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬Trust the Saviour today as your own if you have not yet done so.‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬Sincere regards in Christ’s glorious name,‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬Rev Ivan Foster (Rtd)‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬.

20th April 2022