A lot of people are talking about being in the “last days” lately. I suppose it’s because we are seeing all sorts of “signs” often associated with the end of time. In reality, the “last days” officially started with Jesus’ resurrection and will end with his second coming. So, we are indeed living in the “last days.”
Today’s reading is especially striking though, in terms of its description of what Paul is cautioning Timothy about. We are certainly living in difficult times. The times were difficult then, and they are difficult now. However, we, at least, live in an area of the world where we don’t need to live in fear for our faith. For those that do need to study and praise in private, I pray for you!
What sorts of people should we be careful of according to Paul? Selfish ones. Proud ones. Those who disobey their parents. The list is startling. It would be easy to look around and see those people everywhere. It’s frightening. How are we supposed to stay away from them?
I suppose being armed with the knowledge that those kinds of behavior are not pleasing to the Lord and worth avoiding is a good start. We can’t say we didn’t know any better.
Yet, we can easily be deceived. Paul says, “They will act religious,” or they will “work their way into people’s homes and win the confidence.” That’s why having discernment is so important. It’s not that we are called to “judge” each other. Instead ,we are to be on guard for the evil one’s schemes disguised as good.
We can arm ourselves in truth. Ephesians 6:10-18 speaks of the armor of God. You can read that passage HERE. These last days are difficult. I don’t see them getting “easy” any time soon. We have to be on guard, watching our own actions, and keeping our eyes focused on Jesus. He is coming again. I want to be ready, don’t you?
Let’s pray … Lord, these days are difficult as we see corruption and greed, abuse of power and injustice, selfish manipulators, and all sorts of evil seeming to take over the world. Your precious creation! Help me stand strong, armed with your truth, trusting in you with everything I have. Keep me and those I love safe from harm so we can serve you. In Jesus’ name. Amen.