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God’s Great Famine of 2022 and Beyond

I have been studying and teaching Bible doctrine for over 48 years and the shepherding teacher for home based Churches. Sola Scriptura

A Funeral for a Dear Friend in the Lord

Little did the crowd know that would be getting a double dose of the Gospel.

Little did the crowd know that would be getting a double dose of the Gospel.

A Great Funeral

This past week I spoke at the funeral of a dear friend. I was not the presiding clergy; but his older brother, also a good friend of mine, requested that I speak due to my familiarity with his brother. I wondered who they might have selected for the occasion as most of the family avoids church association. Would it be a formal affair and be a ritual of just going through the motions of being pious? To both our surprise, it was my neighbor who is the pastor of a local church where one of my daughter's family attends. A great guy, though we do disagree on some points, but one who loves the Lord dearly.

All he knew was that one of the family members had invited another to speak, one who knew Jerry, my friend with the Lord, quite well. When he saw it was me; he was quite emotional as he had been praying for a miracle; for he knew nothing of the crowd that would be assembled, let alone the deceased. Being younger and quite nervous about the affair; he began calling me his miracle from God. It truly was exciting to see how God put the two of us together on the field of battle as we complemented each other for the task at hand. After some quick education and prayer together, this was one of the best funerals I have ever been a part of. I am fairly certain most of the crowd had never heard the Gospel presented so clearly as it was that day between the two of us.

The following day, Nelson, Jerry’s older brother, gave me a call and praised the message of the Gospel to a crowd filled with the unsaved and echoed my feelings that it was a wonderful time in the Lord. During that call, Nelson shared a scripture with me that had been heavy on his heart of late. I know this has been a long introduction, but during that call, the verse he shared is now heavy on my heart as well and the basis of the rest of this article.

A Powerful Little Book in the Bible

His ministry may have been extremely short but his message is eternal.

His ministry may have been extremely short but his message is eternal.

Amos, a Shepherd, and a Prophet

The verse is Amos 8:11: “Behold, the days come, saith the Lord GOD, that I will send a famine in the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the LORD.” A shepherd by trade during a period in Israel’s history with great social extremes: prosperity and abject poverty, truly a land of the haves and have nots. Look around … there is nothing new under the sun. Ecclesiastes 1:9 As the message of the book of Amos is timeless, the prophecy of the famine is timeless and especially relevant in these last days.

Isaiah 6:9 points out that the people hear the words but understand NOT and in verse 10 God’s purpose is to make the people’s hearts fat, their ears heavy and to shut their eyes to the Truth. You do realize that most churchy people would never once consider that God would be so mean as to purposefully blind them to the Truth. Jesus, in Matthew 13:14 quotes Isaiah but adds in verse 15 that the people’s hearts have waxed gross [pachuno – to stupefy or render callous] to keep them from being converted and healed of their grossness.

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Congregations all over the world are filled with people who are fat, dumb, and happy in their religiosity. They hear what they want to hear yet do not have a clue that they are truly starving themselves to death, eternal death. As problems usually start from the top, those who fill many pulpits are also prisoners of lies in that they are themselves devoid of the Truth. Within Christendom religious people find it easy to point out those they consider as being members of a cult or false religion for they do not conform to their belief standards, not realizing that they will suffer the same shame and judgment as those they deem cultic or worse.

Note in the Amos passage that it is God that sends the famine and in 2 Thessalonians 2:11-12, God will be sending a ‘… strong delusion, that the people should believe a lie: that they ALL might be damned who believed not the Truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness.” Today a famine, but very soon the famine will turn into a delusion and those who have played at church will play no longer and will forsake even the appearance of being pseudo-righteousness. Welcome to the world of the soon coming Antichrist.

A Litmus Test Has a Story to Tell

The growth in and the love of the Word is the litmus test of whether one is truly a child of the King.

The growth in and the love of the Word is the litmus test of whether one is truly a child of the King.

The Litmus Test

When I spoke at the funeral, I addressed Jerry’s personality as being somewhat ‘opinionated and stubborn’ to which many smiled, and others laughed politely. I then spoke of the certainty of my friend being present with the Lord because of both his growth in the Word and his love of the Word that I and others had witnessed these past five years of intimate home fellowship and Bible study. For five years he and I traveled together to and from our home gathering where I still minister. He received an extra hour and a half of one on one with me and our home fellowship and study of the Word added around three to four hours. I and others witnessed Jerry change greatly over those years; not due to persuasive teaching on my part, but that the Word became more alive as we delved deeper into God’s written Word.

In this world, the religious wannabes and true believers differ in that one learns to love the Word, while the other is content with the status quo. This was brought to light by the closing of the churches due to the ‘pandemic?’ and cries were heard from every corner of the world to both re-open and return to the way it was. The way it was before the closure, the church service had the crowd, and the actual Bible study times had the not so many. Even then, there are even fewer for serious Bible study as many attends only for the fellowship with a little Bible thrown in for good measure.

It took me many years to realize that the lack of scriptural knowledge among many fellow church attendees, was not due to being lazy or complacent, but that their Christianity was a sham. They were converts to a religious way of life and genuinely nice people because of it, but never with the goal of being a disciple of Christ. The strongest evidence that one is truly born-again is their love of the Word and their changed life because of this love. In turn many denominations and gatherings have developed their own peculiar dogma, some more strict than others but with the same goal of keeping their adherents involved in their perception of ideal church life. In these cases, the Word serves a purpose not of personal growth but one of keeping everyone focused on the leadership’s goals for church life and the status quo. The famine is growing and is only going to get worse.

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