The Church

“The whole earth will acknowledge the Lord and return to Him. All the families of the nations will bow down before Him.”
Our children will also serve Him. Future generations will hear about the wonders of the Lord. His righteous acts will be told to those not yet born. They will hear about everything He has done.”
‭‭Psalms‬ ‭22:27,30-31‬ ‭NLT‬‬

This is a remarkable Psalm, in its prophetic vision of the crucified Messiah. The graphic details leap out of the page as they accurately, but sadly, portray the physical impact crucifixion has on a human being’s body, and Jesus quoted the first verse of the Psalm from the cross in His final moments that “Good Friday”. Who can ever deny, dismiss or disbelieve the many Old Testament prophecies, most of which point to Jesus, the Messiah? But today’s verses point to another prophetic occasion, yet to be realised. It will come, because David, writing this Psalm through the Holy Spirit’s inspiration, said so. Simply, there will come a time when our children, including those not yet born, will not only hear about the Lord, God Himself, but will see Him and, with their families, bow down before Him. And it will be a universal occasion – all the peoples, regardless of which nation they belong to, will appear before the Lord – other prophecies point to this being the risen Jesus – and will declare His Lordship. It won’t just be the nation of Israel. The inclusive words used will include those pariah states who try and prevent their people from having anything to do with Christianity. Those states and countries with other religions or ideologies that are imposed top down on a frightened and suppressed population. And will include those states who nibble at the edges of Christianity, trying to replace God’s presence and principles with a secularist agenda and unnecessary anti-God laws.

Many of our churches today in Western 21st Century society are populated by a dwindling congregation of old people, with no sign of a child or young person anywhere. A Church of Scotland building near me has had to close because the elderly congregation is too small to support the maintenance of the building. Roof repairs are beyond their reach. Thankfully, other church groups and fellowships elsewhere are full of young people and families and a couple of years ago my wife and I had the privilege of worshiping with one while holidaying near Keswick in the English Lake District. In our prophetic verses today, though, David could see a time when children will continue to hear “the wonders of the Lord”. Elijah, in the account in 1 Kings 19, was depressed because he thought he was the last of God’s people. But God reassured him that there were 7000 faithful people in Israel at that time. Sometimes we too get depressed as we look on our dwindling congregations, but we can rest assured that His church will live on from one generation to the next. Jesus said in Matthew 16:18, “Now I say to you that you are Peter (which means ‘rock’), and upon this rock I will build my church, and all the powers of hell will not conquer it.” That seems pretty decisive to me!

Who will tell the “future generations” of “the wonders of the Lord“? God’s people everywhere have a responsibility to reach out to those around us regardless of how old they are, telling them about God and all He has done for us. Let us pray daily for an opportunity to share about our amazing God to those who are around us. After all, we have a message of hope badly needed in these negative, pandemic-ridden times. And who knows? The next person we meet might be waiting for us to introduce them to Jesus. 

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