Psalm 78 chronicles the means by which God attempted to awaken His people Israel to who He is through His punishments upon Egypt. God delivered His children from the fiery furnace of slavery, taking them out by supernatural means. The psalm describes the wonders of what God did for Israel and presents their astonishing resistance to placing their faith in Him. It reveals the stubbornness of our flesh and the wayward attitude of the human heart. How can there be so much evidence for God’s mercy? How much does He have to prove that He is trustworthy? Quite a lot as it turns out.
Similarly, what does God have to do in our day and age to get the attention of the world, or at least the church, to their plight? What is that plight? Sin and depravity are consuming the earth and soon God will judge it. God wants people to repent and turn to Him.
Because the children of Israel constantly questioned God’s intent, that brought consequences as described in Psalm 78:21-22:
Therefore, when the Lord heard, he was full of wrath;
a fire was kindled against Jacob;
his anger rose against Israel,
because they did not believe in God
and did not trust his saving power.
Their unbelief angered God immensely, yet what did He do? In His mercy, He provided in abundance.
While in Egypt, God had shown that He was greater than any god that Pharaoh and his subjects worshiped. By bringing plagues against the Egyptians, Yahweh demonstrated the utter fecklessness of all their gods. The Israelites had been captive there for 400 years. Understandably, they had been immersed in that culture and had to be convinced that there was a greater truth. Through the judgment of the ten plagues, God made His case. That should have been enough for the Israelites to see both His power and how much He cared for them. Just think: That God would perform all these signs simply to free the people from bondage. At that point, shouldn’t that have opened their eyes? Nope.
Psalm 78:40-41 laments:
How often they rebelled against him in the wilderness
and grieved him in the desert!
They tested God again and again
and provoked the Holy One of Israel.
Testing God over and over, the people of Israel continued to lust in their flesh for any god but Yahweh. Ultimately, Psalm 78:62 tells us:
He gave his people over to the sword
and vented his wrath on his heritage.
Yet God had a plan in His great love for mankind and for Israel. He brought them back to the land after captivity and dispersion. It’s this act that we can look upon today and see that God will likewise and eventually deliver us despite how we’ve turned away from Him.
An interesting blog that follows the woes of man upon this earth is written by Michael Snyder. In the End of the American Dream (http://endoftheamericandream.com/), Snyder writes of the devastation that has been unleashed by God. He describes the plagues, pestilences, natural catastrophes, and man-made devastations that are overtaking this planet. Frankly, the amount of disaster that is being heaped upon this world is astonishing. I would bet that the vast majority of people have no idea, regardless of our interconnectedness. Most people are simply oblivious. In the case of those in the church, to a large extent, I think it’s willful ignorance.
What are some of the items Snyder has reported on recently as of the writing of this blog? Here’s a short list from his latest four articles:
- The war against cryptocurrencies because of governmental “need” to control money
- How freakish weather is affecting crop production worldwide
- What social media companies are doing to gain greater influence and power
- Why health freedom has become such a hot button topic (hint: COVID and its aftermath)
My understanding is that Michael Snyder is not a pre-Tribulation Rapture believer. Rather his perspective is that believers will go through the Tribulation. As such, he is an ardent observer of the things that he believes everyone, the true church included, will have to endure for those awful seven years. I believe Jesus will come back for His Bride before that. Regardless, Snyder’s viewpoint provides excellent information as to how the world is shaping up to go into the Tribulation with the many precursor, or foreshadowing, events.
In my view, it’s obvious that God is trying to make Himself known through the current circumstances and devastation around us so that people will turn to Him. He also wants the church to awaken from its slumber. Has not the world – has not the church – tested God continuously? Are we not at the cusp of final wrath and judgment given all that we see going on? I think so.
The Bible tells us that neither the world nor the church will open their eyes. Ultimately God’s shaking will only rouse a very few. It won’t be until the Tribulation itself that millions of people actually, finally, get it. Then they will turn to the Lord in their brokenness. Then they will lift their voices and exalt the One true God.
The world is growing darker. Lawlessness will soon prevail. In a short time, those of us true to the Lord Jesus will no longer have to groan under the misery of sin. God will judge the earth, and His glory will be made known to the heavens.