Believers in Orissa, India, and Christ’s Return

John Piper just linked to this article over on the desiring god blog. How do you think these believers in Orissa, India, regard Christ’s return? Do you think they are eagerly awaiting His return? I think if we were to ask 100 of them that question – 100 of them would respond in the positive. Now why do you think that is? It’s because they are suffering. Did they choose the suffering? In a sense they did – they determined that living as disciples of Christ in this world was what they would do and out of His providence suffering was brought upon them because of that determination. I wonder how much suffering you and I face on a daily basis because we have determined to live as disciples of Christ – because we took up our crosses and followed him. I’d measure to say that you probably suffered about as much as I did today. That is how it is in our comfortable homes and in our comfortable life styles. We don’t suffer. In fact, everything in us has been trained to avoid suffering at all costs. That is why there is such a thing as air-conditioning.

I’ve heard a pastor put it like this (and no, it wasn’t John Piper) – What if you determined that this week you were going to go to each of your neighbor’s houses. What if you determined to go and share the gospel with each of them to the point where they knew you truly believed they would go to hell if they did not repent of their sins and follow Christ? Do you think you’d suffer? What if you determined to call every church in your community that was apostate – not preaching the gospel at all or watering down the gospel message for the sake of “seeker sensitivity”. What if you called them and told them they were, according to God’s word, abandoning the gospel that was handed down once for all from Christ and His apostles? Do you think you’d suffer? What if you called that family member who you know is lost and on their way to an eternity under God’s wrath? What if you called them and told them that the road they were on was the road to destruction? Do you think you’d suffer? We make a thousand decisions a day (or refuse to make those decisions) to avoid suffering. What if, instead of choosing the path of least resistance, you started choosing the path that lead to suffering? How do you think you would start regarding Christ’s return? Would you be found eagerly waiting for His return?

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