Discerning Christians realize that we are in the last days. Some Christians are reacting to that realization by hoping for a timely deliverance before any terrible event happens to them. I agree that God’s word declares that we are not appointed unto His wrath. However, one should consider that the majority of Christians around the world have been suffering persecution for decades. A significant number are experiencing very harsh persecution. Nearly 200,000 Christians are martyred each year according to recent statistics. Other ones are tortured, raped, robbed, beaten, and imprisoned, and live daily in with the threat of violence. They are outcasts, targets for any thug who wants to molest them, and many of them have little means of income. Just to have something to eat or a decent place to live are daily struggles for them.
Conversely, American evangelicals have an elitism that prevents them from believing that such persecution could happen to them. They believe that all will be peace, and before anything harsh occurs, God will snatch them out of harms way. It is because of this mindset that they are not alarmed by the approaching global government with One World Religion. They see prophecies of the end times either being fulfilled or on the brink of fulfillment, and their response is to become excited that they will soon be taken to heaven. This is elitism peculiar to American evangelicals. It is a perverted teaching of the Scriptural view of the end times. I would think that even commons sense would lead us to recognize the discrepancy of such elitism. For example, why would God allow the early church and the majority of the present world to endure great persecution, but exempt the lazy, heresy-infested, apathetic, lethargic, uncommitted, and unproductive American church?
Anyone that attempts to manipulate the Scriptures, add conjecture, and force God’s word to imply that American evangelicals will not suffer persecution is teaching elitism. I want to remind them that exemption from the wrath of God does not mean that Christians are also exempted from the wrath of man. There is no way of knowing exactly how much persecution that Christians will suffer before the rapture occurs. In my opinion, teaching Christians that they will not have to suffer persecution simply because they are Americans is heresy. Anyone who believes such heresy had better wake up to the truth and get prepared to face a terrible period of persecution before it is too late. From my observation I have concluded that the majority of American Christians are completely unprepared to face even mild persecution. They turn a deaf ear and blind eye to the evil encroachment that is occurring about them while believing that they have clear sailing to the finish line. Consequently, they are not doing anything to resist the invasion or to assist anyone that is fighting that good fight of faith. So deeply entrenched is their elitism that they cannot even pray for the ones who are doing battle. The most dangerous factor in elitism is to believe that it is unnecessary to be more than a pew warmer to qualify for total exemption from persecution.
For those individuals I am deeply concerned. I wish to point them to a troubling section of Christ’s teaching about the state of the last generation of Christians.
In Matthew 25:1-13, Christ presented a parable of ten virgins, five wise and five foolish. It is a warning about being prepared for the Coming of the Lord. Obviously, this is a reference to ten professing Christians. The evidence is in the fact that they were all virgins, they all had lamps, they all had fire on their wicks, they were all together in the same place, they were all waiting for the Bridegroom, and they all called Him Lord. The only difference was that five of them were unprepared and had brought no extra oil. Therefore, when their wicks began to flicker, they did not have enough fire to follow the other five into the wedding.
The majority of professing Christians today do not have enough fire to even witness for Christ, to pray, to read or study their bibles, or to do anything but attend church meetings, and some only do that occasionally. Why do they believe that they are prepared for the harshness of the last days? The answer is because they have been taught elitism by pastors that are reticent to say anything negative from the pulpit. Most modern preaching is all about “Your Best Life Now” to some degree and variation. It is about what ever draws a crowd and keeps them coming. Everything centers on positive, sensational, and hyper-encouraging, themes. This may explain why news and support for the persecuted church is strangely absent from most church meetings.
Elitism is a great wall built with untempered mortar.
“Because, indeed, because they have seduced My people, saying, ‘Peace!’ when there is no peace—and one builds a wall, and they plaster it with untempered mortar— say to those who plaster it with untempered mortar, that it will fall. There will be flooding rain, and you, O great hailstones, shall fall; and a stormy wind shall tear it down. Surely, when the wall has fallen, will it not be said to you, ‘Where is the mortar with which you plastered it?’” (Ezekiel 113:10-12 NKJV)
It will take a strong individual equipped with knowledge and indwelt by the Holy Spirit to withstand the deception and persecution of the last days. People attempting to coast to the finish line are completely unprepared to overcome. God’s word is clear that only the ones that overcome will be honored.
He who overcomes shall be clothed in white garments, and I will not blot out his name from the Book of Life; but I will confess his name before My Father and before His angels. (Revelation 3:5 NKJV)
As to the fate of the ones that slumbered and slept without oil, I do not wish to find out first hand. All I know in my heart (and I believe the Holy Spirit warns me daily about it) is that we must be spiritually prepared for the harsh times ahead. We must be very careful not to allow the cares of this life and the world system to distract, dis-focus, and weaken us to the extent that we will not be able to continue confessing Christ Jesus as our Lord and Savior under the threat of brutal persecution. We must be careful to inspect our hearts, make certain that we are not elitists and therefore apathetic concerning the danger of end time’s persecution. There are many warnings about preparedness in God’s word concerning the last days. We should study and become familiar with them. Elitist-based apathy is a powerful deterrent to preparedness. When it all comes down it will occur very quickly. There will be no time to prepare. If one is avoiding preparation because of elitism, that soul will suffer greatly when that dark hour arrives.