Many Will Fall Away

At that time many will fall away and will betray one another and hate one another.

Matthew 24:10

Jesus made it very clear to all who believed in Him that we would have tribulations and persecutions because of His name. He also prophesied that not all would endure trials without wavering, but many will stumble, surrender their brethren in the faith, and hate them. In fact, Jesus Himself lived it in His own flesh: Judas gave Him, Peter denied Him and the rest of His disciples fled when they crucified Him. The Scripture only mentions John and some women who stood at the foot of the cross, the others stumbled.

When we realize that the final tests are going to be the strongest of all, we can understand why many will stumble and run away. It is somewhat similar to what happens when a university career is about to end, the exams to which the students are subjected are by far the most difficult. In addition, in some cases, they require the submission of a thesis that must be evaluated by a very demanding committee. That is why we see many deserting their studies before concluding them.

The Lord was well aware that there would be deserters when he said this: many will fall away and will betray one another and hate one another. Those who hope to be safe before the antichrist comes and the great tribulation are likely to be part of those who will fall away. Since they were not prepared to suffer because of Jesus Christ, they would try to save the skin by denying their faith. Even some will be able to cooperate with the persecutor by giving away to his brothers, whom they will hate by blaming them for the persecution.

What are the consequences of those who fall away? The best answer is given by the Lord Himself in John 12:25: He who loves his life will lose it, and he who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life. The one who stumbles is because he loves his life and thinks that denying his faith before the beast is going to be saved; but what he does not know is that, by agreeing with the antichrist, he is choosing the same final destiny as this, that is, the lake of fire and sulfur. Whoever does such a thing, has decided to renounce Christ and all that he represents, therefore he has renounced eternal life.

You could ask me, where have God’s forgiveness, mercy and love remained? I answer you with another question: do you think that God must repay you with forgiveness, mercy and love after you have betrayed Him? Brother, let’s not play with fire, look what Romans 11: 21-22 says: For if God did not spare the natural branches, He may not spare you either. Therefore consider the goodness and severity of God: on those who fell, severity; but toward you, goodness, if you continue in His goodness. Otherwise you also will be cut off.

Anyone who stumbles over his brother to be martyred becomes responsible for his blood. That makes him a criminal sinner and, as such, has despised grace, the undeserved gift. Whoever does such a thing has voluntarily rejected Jesus Christ, is a deserter of His army, can no longer pretend that his name remains in the Book of Life. Only he who stands firm to the end, no matter that he has risked his own life, will be counted among the elect. Let us see, then, and stand firm, clinging to Christ, without stumbling to be found worthy to receive Him in the clouds when He comes. God bless you.

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Muchos Tropezarán

Muchos tropezarán entonces, y se entregarán unos a otros, y unos a otros se aborrecerán.

Mateo 24:10

Jesús dejó muy claro a todos los que creyeran en Él de que tendríamos tribulaciones y persecuciones por causa de Su nombre. Él también profetizó que no todos iban a aguantar las pruebas sin flaquear, sino que muchos tropezarán, entregarán a sus hermanos en la fe y los aborrecerán. De hecho, el mismo Jesús lo vivió en carne propia: Judas lo entregó, Pedro lo negó y el resto de Sus discípulos salió huyendo cuando lo crucificaron. La Escritura solo menciona a Juan y algunas mujeres que estuvieron al pie de la cruz, los demás tropezaron.

Cuando nos damos cuenta de que las pruebas finales van a ser las más fuertes de todas, podemos entender porque muchos van a tropezar y salir corriendo. Es algo similar a lo que ocurre cuando una carrera universitaria está por terminar, los exámenes a los que son sometidos los estudiantes son, por mucho, los más difíciles. Además, en algunos casos, le requieren la presentación de una tesis que debe ser evaluada por un comité muy exigente. Por eso, vemos a muchos desertar de sus estudios antes de concluirlos.

El Señor estaba muy consciente de que habrían desertores cuando dijo esto: Muchos tropezarán entonces, y se entregarán unos a otros, y unos a otros se aborrecerán. Aquellos que esperan estar a salvo antes de que venga el anticristo y la gran tribulación, probablemente sean parte de los que tropezarán. Como no estaban preparados para padecer por causa de Jesucristo, tratarían de salvar el pellejo negando su fe. Incluso, algunos serán capaces de cooperar con el perseguidor delatando a sus hermanos, a quienes odiarán echándoles la culpa de la persecución.

¿Cuáles son las consecuencias de quienes tropiecen? La mejor respuesta la da el propio Señor en Juan 12:25: El que ama su vida, la perderá; y el que aborrece su vida en este mundo, para vida eterna la guardará. Quien tropieza es porque ama su vida y piensa que renegando de su fe ante la bestia va a salvarse; pero lo que ignora es que, pactando con el anticristo, está escogiendo el mismo destino final que éste, es decir, el lago de fuego y azufre. Quien tal cosa haga, decidió renunciar a Cristo y a todo lo que Él representa, por tanto ha renunciado a la vida eterna.

Me podrías preguntar ¿dónde han quedado el perdón, la misericordia y el amor de Dios? Yo te contesto con otra pregunta: ¿piensas que Dios debe pagarte con perdón, misericordia y amor después que lo hayas traicionado? Hermano, no juguemos con fuego, mira lo que dice Romanos 11:21-22: Porque si Dios no perdonó a las ramas naturales, a ti tampoco te perdonará. Mira, pues, la bondad y la severidad de Dios; la severidad ciertamente para con los que cayeron, pero la bondad para contigo, si permaneces en esa bondad; pues de otra manera tú también serás cortado.

Quien tropieza entregando al hermano para que sea martirizado, se hace responsable de su sangre derramada. Eso lo convierte en un criminal pecador y, como tal, ha despreciado la gracia, el don inmerecido. Quien tal cosa haga ha rechazado voluntariamente a Jesucristo, es un desertor de Su ejército, ya no puede pretender que su nombre permanezca en el Libro de la Vida. Solo quien permanece firme hasta el fin, no importando que haya puesto en riesgo su propia vida, será contado entre los escogidos. Velemos, pues, y estemos firmes, agarrados de Cristo, sin tropezar para ser hallados dignos de recibirlo en las nubes cuando Él venga. Dios te bendiga.

Asking According to His Will

Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him.

1 John 5:14-15

God’s plans for each of His children are perfect. The will of God, according to Scripture, is good, pleasing and perfect. Many times we complain that we do not receive what we have asked for in prayer. Before we complain to God that we are not pleased, it is better to ask the following question: are our requests aligned with God’s will? If the answer is no, then it is no surprise that it has not been answered favorably. If the answer is yes, as John says: we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him.

The first thing to keep in mind is that God loves us. Titus 3:4-7 says, But when the kindness and the love of God our Savior toward man appeared, not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior, that having been justified by His grace we should become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.

The love of God has manifested in the world through Jesus Christ, who took the place of every man and woman that has existed on earth to pay with His precious blood the price of our redemption. There is no better gift than this from God, which shows that every request for salvation is a prayer that conforms to the will of God and will be answered in the right time. I know of someone who was praying for my conversion for 30 years; but God answered that prayer and today my greatest passion is to serve Jesus Christ.

If you do not know the will of God, ask Him to show you, just as David did. Psalm 143:10 says, Teach me to do Your will, For You are my God; Your Spirit is good. Lead me in the land of uprightness. This request will be answered by God since His desire is that we know His will. And the will of God will always be for our good. It is impossible for a Father as loving as He is not willing to give the best that exists to each of His children.

In addition to praying to teach us His will, we already have in us who can help us to ask God’s will. Romans 8:26 says, Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us[a] with groanings which cannot be uttered. Prayer in the Spirit will always be answered because it is a prayer aligned to the will of God. Those unspeakable moans that come out of your mouth when you pray in the Spirit go directly to the heart of God.

We can be praying to God without getting an answer and we can even get angry with Him for not giving us what we ask for. If the doctors say that you have to do a complex surgery for your son whose cost is $50,000, God may not supply you with that amount of money, not because he does not want his healing, but to glorify himself by doing the miracle of healing. Let us keep in mind what James 4:3 says, You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures. Therefore, let us align our petitions according to the will of God and we will be sure that He will always answer our prayer. God bless you.

Pidiendo Conforme a Su Voluntad

Y esta es la confianza que tenemos en él, que si pedimos alguna cosa conforme a su voluntad, él nos oye. Y si sabemos que él nos oye en cualquiera cosa que pidamos, sabemos que tenemos las peticiones que le hayamos hecho.

1 Juan 5:14-15

Los planes de Dios para cada uno de Sus hijos son perfectos. La voluntad de Dios, de acuerdo a la Escritura, es buena, agradable y perfecta. Muchas veces nos quejamos de que no recibimos lo que hemos pedido en oración. Antes de reclamarle a Dios por no complacernos, es mejor hacer la siguiente pregunta: ¿están alineadas nuestras peticiones a la voluntad de Dios? Si la respuesta es no, entonces no es ninguna sorpresa que no haya sido contestada favorablemente. Si la respuesta es sí, como bien dice Juan: sabemos que tenemos las peticiones que le hayamos hecho.

Lo primero que debemos tener en cuenta es que Dios nos ama. Tito 3:4-7 dice: Pero cuando se manifestó la bondad de Dios nuestro Salvador, y su amor para con los hombres, nos salvó, no por obras de justicia que nosotros hubiéramos hecho, sino por su misericordia, por el lavamiento de la regeneración y por la renovación en el Espíritu Santo, el cual derramó en nosotros abundantemente por Jesucristo nuestro Salvador, para que justificados por su gracia, viniésemos a ser herederos conforme a la esperanza de la vida eterna.

El amor de Dios se ha manifestado en el mundo por medio de Jesucristo, quien tomó el lugar de cada hombre y mujer que ha existido sobre la tierra para pagar con Su preciosa sangre el precio de nuestra redención. No hay mejor regalo que éste de parte de Dios, lo cual demuestra que toda petición de salvación es una oración que va conforme a la voluntad de Dios y será contestada en el tiempo preciso. Sé de alguien que estuvo orando por mi conversión durante 30 años; pero Dios respondió esa oración y hoy mi mayor pasión es servir a Cristo.

Si no sabes cuál es la voluntad de Dios, pídele a Él que te le muestre, tal como lo hizo David. Salmo 143:10 dice: Enséñame a hacer tu voluntad, porque tú eres mi Dios; Tu buen espíritu me guíe a tierra de rectitud. Esta petición será contestada por Dios ya que Su deseo es que conozcamos Su voluntad. Y la voluntad de Dios siempre será para nuestro bien. Es imposible que un Padre tan amoroso como Él no esté dispuesto a dar lo mejor que existe a cada uno de Sus hijos.

Además de orar pidiendo que nos enseñe Su voluntad, ya tenemos en nosotros quien nos ayude a pedir conforme a la voluntad de Dios. Romanos 8:26 dice: Y de igual manera el Espíritu nos ayuda en nuestra debilidad; pues qué hemos de pedir como conviene, no lo sabemos, pero el Espíritu mismo intercede por nosotros con gemidos indecibles. La oración en el Espíritu siempre será contestada porque es una oración alineada a la voluntad de Dios. Esos gemidos indecibles que salen de tu boca cuando oras en el Espíritu van directamente al corazón de Dios.

Podemos estar orando a Dios sin obtener respuesta y hasta nos podemos enojar con Él por no darnos lo que pedimos. Si los médicos dicen que hay que hacerle una compleja operación a tu hijo cuyo costo son 50 mil dólares, puede que Dios no te supla esa cantidad de dinero, no porque no desee su sanidad, sino para que Él se glorifique haciendo el milagro de curarlo. Tengamos muy en cuenta lo que dice Santiago 4:3: Pedís, y no recibís, porque pedís mal, para gastar en vuestros deleites. Por lo tanto, alineemos nuestras peticiones conforme a la voluntad de Dios y estaremos seguros de que siempre Él responderá nuestra oración. Dios te bendiga.

The Hope that Purifies

Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is. And everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself, just as He is pure.

1 John 3:2-3

John speaks to us in 1 John 3:2-3 of a hope that purifies. What is this hope? Knowing that we are children of God, we have the hope of the triumphant return of our Lord Jesus Christ. Upon His return, we will be transformed into a blink of an eye and John tells us that we will be like Him. Why does this hope purify us? When Christ returns for His church, He wants it pure, without blemishes or wrinkles. Therefore, we who await His coming, in order to be like Him, must purify ourselves to be ready for the marriage of the Lamb.

Chapter 19 of the book of Revelation describes the triumphal return of Jesus Christ and His encounter with His church. In Revelation 19:7-9 we read, Let us be glad and rejoice and give Him glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His wife has made herself ready.” And to her it was granted to be arrayed in fine linen, clean and bright, for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints. Then he said to me, “Write: ‘Blessed are those who are called to the marriage supper of the Lamb!’” And he said to me, “These are the true sayings of God.”

Before our Lord returns, we must prepare and clothe ourselves with holiness and purity. Our finest linen garments are our righteous actions, which are the result of our redemption. Ephesians 5:27 says how the church is expected to be when the Lord returns, that He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish. Once we are saved, our response is to keep His words in thanksgiving for our salvation.

The hope that the coming of Jesus Christ should move us to live in holiness and not to be contaminated with the things of the world. 1 Thessalonians 3:13 says, so that He may establish your hearts blameless in holiness before our God and Father at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ with all His saints. We do not know when His return will be, therefore, we must always be prepared to receive Him at any time. It would be foolish to stop being present at the wedding of the Lamb for neglecting our relationship with God.

In order not to lose our wonderful encounter with Christ, we must always abide in Him. 1 John 2:28 says, And now, little children, abide in Him, that when[a] He appears, we may have confidence and not be ashamed before Him at His coming. Staying in the one who overcame the world will have His strength to resist the temptation to contaminate us and thus we would keep on our way to our purification. Clinging to this hope our actions keep us without blemishes or wrinkles.

This must be the motto of all who look forward to the coming of the Lord: And everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself, just as He is pure. And our expectation will not be without reward, for the Bible says in 2 Timothy 4:8, Finally, there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give to me on that Day, and not to me only but also to all who have loved His appearing. Let us await His coming in holiness. God bless you.

La Esperanza que Purifica

Amados, ahora somos hijos de Dios, y aún no se ha manifestado lo que hemos de ser; pero sabemos que cuando él se manifieste, seremos semejantes a él, porque le veremos tal como él es. Y todo aquel que tiene esta esperanza en él, se purifica a sí mismo, así como él es puro.

1 Juan 3:2-3

Juan nos habla en 1 Juan 3:2-3 de una esperanza que purifica. ¿Cuál es esta esperanza? Sabiendo que somos hijos de Dios, tenemos la esperanza del regreso triunfante de nuestro Señor Jesucristo. A Su regreso, seremos transformados en un abrir y cerrar de ojos y Juan nos dice que seremos semejantes a Él. ¿Por qué esta esperanza nos purifica? Cuando Cristo regrese por Su iglesia, Él la quiere pura, sin manchas ni arrugas. Por lo tanto, quienes aguardamos Su venida, a fin de ser semejantes a Él, debemos purificarnos a nosotros mismos a fin de estar listos para las bodas del Cordero.

El capítulo 19 del libro de Apocalipsis describe el regreso triunfal de Jesucristo y Su encuentro con Su iglesia. En Apocalipsis 19:7-9 leemos: Gocémonos y alegrémonos y démosle gloria; porque han llegado las bodas del Cordero, y su esposa se ha preparado. Y a ella se le ha concedido que se vista de lino fino, limpio y resplandeciente; porque el lino fino es las acciones justas de los santos. Y el ángel me dijo: Escribe: Bienaventurados los que son llamados a la cena de las bodas del Cordero. Y me dijo: Estas son palabras verdaderas de Dios.

Antes de que nuestro Señor regrese, debemos de prepararnos y vestirnos de santidad y pureza. Nuestras vestiduras de lino fino son nuestras acciones justas, las cuales son el resultado de nuestra redención. Efesios 5:27 dice como se espera que sea la iglesia cuando regrese el Señor: a fin de presentársela a sí mismo, una iglesia gloriosa, que no tuviese mancha ni arruga ni cosa semejante, sino que fuese santa y sin mancha. Una vez somos salvos, nuestra respuesta es guardar Sus palabras en agradecimiento por nuestra salvación.

La esperanza de que la venida de Jesucristo se acerque debe movernos a vivir en santidad y a no contaminarnos con las cosas del mundo. 1 Tesalonicenses 3:13 dice: para que sean afirmados vuestros corazones, irreprensibles en santidad delante de Dios nuestro Padre, en la venida de nuestro Señor Jesucristo con todos sus santos. No sabemos cuándo será su regreso, por lo tanto, debemos de estar siempre preparados para recibirlo en cualquier momento. Sería tonto dejar de estar presente en las bodas del Cordero por descuidar nuestra relación con Dios.

Para no perdernos el maravilloso encuentro con Cristo, es necesario que permanezcamos siempre en Él. 1 Juan 2:28 dice: Y ahora, hijitos, permaneced en él, para que cuando se manifieste, tengamos confianza, para que en su venida no nos alejemos de él avergonzados. Permaneciendo en quien venció al mundo contaremos con Su fuerza para resistir la tentación de contaminarnos y así nos mantendríamos en camino a nuestra purificación. Aferrados a esta esperanza nuestras acciones nos mantienen sin manchas ni arrugas.

Este debe ser el lema de todos los que aguardamos ansiosos la venida del Señor: Y todo aquel que tiene esta esperanza en él, se purifica a sí mismo, así como él es puro. Y nuestra espera no quedará sin recompensa, pues la Biblia dice en 2 Timoteo 4:8: Por lo demás, me está guardada la corona de justicia, la cual me dará el Señor, juez justo, en aquel día; y no sólo a mí, sino también a todos los que aman su venida. Esperemos Su venida en santidad. Dios te bendiga.

Delivered to the Tribulation

Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and kill you, and you will be hated by all nations for My name’s sake.

Matthew 24:9

We love receiving good news, but we hate to give up. Many people come to Christ’s feet burdened with problems and are hopeful that they will tell Him that He is the key to changing their lives on earth, to be happy, to lack of problems and to prosperity. That is why it is not very frequent to listen to a sermon on things like those that says Matthew 24: 9: Then they will deliver you to tribulation, and they will kill you, and you will be hated of all the nations for My name’s sake. Jesus Christ did not hide the truth about what would happen to those who follow Him and we are no one to prevent this from being known today as well.

Contrary to what is often taught, being a Christian does not come with the guarantee of lacking problems, quite the contrary. And now that the last times are near, it is an act of utter cruelty to take people to the feet of Christ by hiding these biblical truths. Whoever becomes Jesus Christ must know the whole truth and not just things that look beautiful. Without a doubt that we will be delivered to tribulation, many will be killed and people will hate us because of the name of Jesus.

The preachers of the gospel, like the doctors, are called to give all the news, the good and the bad. And as that doctor who without hesitation communicates to his patient that the cancer has metastasized in his body and, therefore, his days are numbered, we have to tell the believers that at some point, before the coming of the Lord, there will be persecution against us which was never before. A patient with a terminal illness can become depressed or enjoy his last days, the Christian will be with Christ no matter what happens.

Why Christians will be delivered to tribulation? It is written that the whole world is under the wicked one; but before the coming of the Lord the manifestation of the man of sin, the antichrist, the beast, will occur. If we already walk by a minefield, imagine how the world will be when the beast has it under his control. The name of Christ will be vetoed and anyone who calls on that blessed name will be persecuted without mercy. The Christian will be made to choose between denying his faith or dying.

There are those who comfort themselves saying that before that happens the Lord will come secretly and take His chosen ones, who will suffer absolutely nothing of the terrible things that will happen. I have carefully reviewed the entire New Testament several times and found nowhere to say that we will be raptured or rescued from the Tribulation. What I have found are things like these: Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and kill you, and you will be hated by all nations for My name’s sake.

You will then say that you made your worst mistake by becoming a Christian because, instead of giving up on problems, you are going to have bigger ones. Well, I tell you, it was not a mistake, but the wisest decision you ever made. Do not think that those who persecute you or those who are saved from persecution will be better off than you. With Christ you have the guarantee of eternal life, that even if you are dead you will live because He is the resurrection and the life. Without Christ, it would expect a safe place in hell for you, perpetual torment. To live is Christ and to die for Him is gain. God bless you.