IT ALL HAPPENED AT THE MALL
(Trussville, AL USA)
"Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice insofar as you share Christ's sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when His glory is revealed. If you are insulted for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you.1 Peter 4:16 Yet if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God in that name." (I Peter 4:12-14,16)
I'm glad I joined up with them after my graduation, for this nonprofit organization pays much more than I had expected, having just graduated from college. And most importantly, I have always agreed with its agenda, especially since becoming heavily involved in my local church spiritual doctrine, and Bible prophecy in particular.
But I don't mind telling, this week has been a touch on the old nerves, what with so many outside evil influences spurning our country's religious rights with such disdain. I guess it's just like the Scripture our pastor often quotes from (II Timothy 3:1-7, 9, 13) ( II Timothy 4:3-4). We are surely moving quickly into the last days.
Thank God for the weekend! I really need the rest. I just hope I don't slip again into another of those frightful prophecy dreams. Well, I did slip into my dream world, much to my regret. However, this dream was really an eye-opener, which showed the true power of our all-powerful Creator.
All of a sudden, I found myself sitting in the lobby of a crowded local shopping mall when I happened to notice a number of strangely uniformed officers milling around the mall. When two of these officers walked over and sat next to me I noticed their uniform patches, displaying a rather large logo with the initials "PPS." Directly under the logo initials was with the inscription "People's Progressive Society."
My inquisitive spirit took over my better judgment, in tempting me to ask them what this society was all about and who they worked for. If my curiosity hadn't gotten the better of me, the following episode would probably not have happened. Anyway, at least I kind of gathered what they were up to.
Both officers quickly rose and snapped to attention by clicking their boots like that of a WW II Storm Trooper. Then in unison, as if by a well-programmed orator, they begin reciting some sort of pledge. I couldn't make it out, however as it was spoken in a foreign language. However, I took it to mean some sort of social order that stood against our basic civil and religious rights.
Nonetheless, I did gather a word now and then. Seems this pledge gave them the right to oppose our basic freedoms, and such initiatives as private property rights, free consumerism, the equality of mankind, equality of law and justice. In other words, they were defiantly against all aspects of our domestic tranquility. Suddenly, without giving me any chance for rebuttal, they quickly left in an orderly parade march.
This entire scenario shook me so, I had to get up and walk off my anxiety. I was glad that I did, for as I was walking I was able to catch the conversations of several more officers as they confronted other people.
One conversation, in particular, involved a bystander thanking an older nice-looking combat veteran, wearing the customary decorated "Korean War" cap. "Sir, I observed you as you approached that elderly veteran, the one wearing the signifying cap. You thanked him for his service to his country and wished him well by telling him to have a nice day. Sir, that’s not allowed under the new rules of the PPS. So you are getting this citation which requires an appearance in the court of progressive understanding."
Then I observed another of these Storm Troopers, as I call them, approach this teenager helping an elderly lady with her walker. It was a repeat of all the other conversations, between these Storm Troopers and the shopping public. The teen was also given a citation for his good deed.
And on and on it went between these Storm Troopers and the general shopping public. One rather elderly looking man was actually arrested on the spot, for what I don't know, as I wasn't able to eavesdrop on that private conversation. It was as if the uniformed officer didn't want anyone to hear his particular conversation without his consent.
At this point, I guess I had had enough of this rather outlandish behavior. "Why hasn't the mall put a stop to it?" I privately asked myself. "Well, I don't know, so I'll just sit down and gather my senses."
Then it happened. As if by divine direction, this eccentric character appeared on my bench. He was dressed in Bible garb and talked the part.
"I see you are very discouraged, my son. You are upset for you feel your country's domestic tranquility and religious freedom is swiftly being taken away."
"I don't know who you are, but you are 'right on'," I responded.
"Let me carry you back to the Scripture," he answered. "This present day psychology, including the conscious and unconscious behavior of the mind, is now being controlled by evil intent. (Ephesians 6:11-12) And yes, it seems to be increasing rather rapidly. However, it's all addressed in prophecy. Don't forget, God is still in command of this of old universe."
"The Apostle Paul, in his day, probably had every reason to share your same attitude in Nero's Rome. Yet he gave us this particular Scripture. The government is established and instituted by God Himself (Romans 13:1-2). Therefore, believers are to submit to such authorities (Romans 13:1,5) and give them the appropriate respect." (Romans 13:7)
"Nonetheless, the state has certain obligations and so do we. We should not, however, allow apathy to put us in cynicism, nor hinder our spiritual testimony. God is still in control. He places the bad and good governments, to affect His sovereign will. (Daniel 2:19-23) And this type of activity or performance is just prophecy in action."
Nonetheless, Christians such as yourself may be experiencing certain attitudes towards the assignments of governments; ignoring government, because we are not of this world's political system, giving total adherence to government because it is regarded as equivalent to God, or total rebellion of government because the government is deemed as an agent of evil. However, we should always realize that our God is a God of order and government is actually an instrument of such order. Whatever will be will be in accordance with God's holy sovereign will."
"Now my son, don't get discouraged with this world's evil intents. Make every effort to give an account of your Christianity to others, as the Lord provides." (1 Peter 3:15)
"Wow, sir are you really the Apostle Paul? Were you sent to give me a particular message? Please tell me, sir." I responded.
Instead of a reply, this kind gentleman disappeared as he arrived, and so did my dream. Do I have my work cut out for me? I surely do. I can't wait for my next work day to begin. Wow, will I give my co-workers an ear full!
And to answer yours and my question, was this really the Apostle Paul? All I can say is when I sat down to my desk for my class study review, I found a rather strange handwritten note giving a particular passage of Scripture. So please read for yourself. (Romans 1:1-13)
In (Romans 1:1) Paul identifies himself
In Romans 1:2-4 Paul identifies his message
In (Romans 1:6-7) Paul identifies his readers
In (Romans 1:8) Paul gives thanks for his followers
In (Romans 1:9-10) Paul prayers for his followers
In Romans 1:11) Paul wants the work to continue.
In (Romans 1:12) Paul shows he expects mutual blessing in his visit
In Romans 1: 13) Paul desires to see Gospel results in Rome
A few parting thoughts: Did this fictional blog give a prime example of Paul's earnest desire and prayer life for his people? (Romans 1:9-10)
And as in (Acts 9:15), did this fiction blog also show that it was apparent that besides being a great theologian, Paul was also a passionate missionary and evangelist, caring for all mankind?
So again, I ask you, did this fictional blog give an indication that God had sent an incarnation of the Apostle Paul to encourage this otherwise desponded child of God? I'm curious as to your thoughts.
Is this fictional blog God's precursor of things to come? Maybe so! For I believe the next event on God's calendar is the rapture of the church, (I Cor. 15:51-52) (I Thess. 4:13-18) the event when Christ calls all His children, living and dead, to meet Him in the sky.
After that, comes the seven-year tribulation period that time of great peril on earth like none has ever seen. And it is during this seven-year period that all hell will break loose, so to speak. (Daniel 12:1) (Matthew 24:21-22)
So start looking up, my beloved friends. (Luke 21:28)