We give thanks to you, O God, we give thanks, for your Name is near; men tell of your wonderful deeds.
You say, “I choose the appointed time; it is I who judge uprightly. When the earth and all its people quake, it is I who hold its pillars firm. To the arrogant I say, ‘Boast no more,’ and to the wicked, ‘Do not lift up your horns. Do not lift your horns against heaven; do not speak with outstretched neck.’ “
No one from the east or the west or from the desert can exalt a man. But it is God who judges: He brings one down, he exalts another. In the hand of the LORD is a cup full of foaming wine mixed with spices; he pours it out, and all the wicked of the earth drink it down to its very dregs.
As for me, I will declare this forever; I will sing praise to the God of Jacob. I will cut off the horns of all the wicked, but the horns of the righteous will be lifted up.
I’ve been a believer for over thirty years and right from the beginning have had a powerful (some have called it excessive) interest in the End Times. Because of this, I’ve tended to view current events through the lens of prophecy, with one eye on the news and the other on the writings of Isaiah, Ezekiel, Daniel and others. From my studies I’ve concluded that for several decades now, most of the major players have been on stage and most of the pre-conditions met for events of the End of the Age to come crashing down upon us with alarming suddenness. While people are saying, “Peace and safety,” destruction will come on them suddenly, as labor pains on a pregnant woman, and they will not escape. (1 Thes. 5:3)
Several times, I’ve watched the world march right up to the very brink of destruction, only to draw back at the last minute. The paths have been varied, sometimes military, sometimes moral, sometimes political, but each time just as it seemed like we had gone too far, that events had taken on a life of their own, somehow tensions were eased, positions reversed, and cooler heads prevailed.
Of course, each time this has happened the nay-sayers have had a field day. It’s just like Peter said they would. First of all, you must understand that in the last days scoffers will come, scoffing and following their own evil desires. They will say, “Where is this ‘coming’ he promised? Ever since our fathers died, everything goes on as it has since the beginning of creation.” (2 Peter 3:3-4)
He went on to say that they deliberately ignore the fact the God does intervene in human affairs, sometimes to slow things down and sometimes to accelerate them.
This psalm makes a couple of things clear about that. First, when you look at the world and can’t understand why it doesn’t just fly out of control altogether, remember His promise. When the earth and all its people quake, it is I who hold its pillars firm. And second, when all the prophecies are lined up for fulfillment and all the TV preachers are shouting that the end is surely near, God says, “I choose the appointed time; it is I who judge uprightly.”
Make no mistake, the prophecies will be fulfilled, but at a time of His choosing. (I’ve often said that the only sure way to interpret prophecy is to wait for the event to happen, read the prophecy related to it, and say, “Oh, so that’s what that meant.”)
How much worse can the world get? Why is He taking so long to wrap things up? Let’s ask Peter. But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance. (2 Peter 3:8-9)
He’s waiting for as many as will to come to Him and be saved. Like the mother hen who waits anxiously at the door of the coop till all her chicks are safely inside, like the parents who can’t go to sleep at night till all their kids are home and in bed, He doesn’t want any of His children to be left behind. Does He get what He wants? Sadly, no. Having given us the final decision, He must watch as one day those who’ve refused His offer of pardon condemn themselves to eternal punishment.
But in the meantime the door’s still open, so thank Him for waiting till you came into the family. Thank Him for the 175,000 new believers who will come to Him today. In your desire for the kingdom to come quickly, thank Him for His patience, it’s a measure of His love.