“…Also I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for the testimony of Jesus and for the word of God, and those who had not worshiped the beast or its image and had not received its mark on their foreheads or their hands…”- Revelation 20:4
In the future, historians will wonder how our modern society got to the point where beheading would be so commonplace, and I believe that they will be able to pinpoint the beginning of the “normalization” of this form of execution to the summer of 2020.
Here are a couple of pictures showing this “normalization”.
When I originally saw this article (and others like it), a cold chill went up my spine. No one cried foul, because the demonstrators were BLM/Antifa/related gangs. No one cried foul because the target was a rich “white” male. No one cried foul because the victim was not seen as a victim.
Americans have—rightly so in my opinion—shunned beheading as a normal form of capital punishment. We see it as barbaric, even if the person “deserved” the death penalty. We associate it with ISIS, Saudi Arabia and the French Revolution. Or, today’s “cancel culture.”
But God’s word tells us that beheading will be the lot of those who resist the beast, its image or the mark. Jesus told the disciples, “Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and put you to death, and you will be hated by all nations for my name’s sake.” True believers will be targeted for “cancellation.” Those days will make “Logan’s Run” look like a quaint children’s film in comparison.
Would you have believed anyone, if a year ago they would have told you that, “Next summer, the U.S. economy will have shrunk 32.9%, unemployment will be in double figures, world travel will have ground to a halt, schools would be mostly closed, large cities will have been given over to paid thugs, Beirut will have been flattened (and not by Israel), state and local governments will be trying to close or limit in-person church meetings, only 50% of attendees will have returned to those churches that have reopened…”? And that’s the short version. And it has all happened in six months.
Beloved, this pandemic is just one of God’s ways of getting our attention. Think of this as a practice session. Lawlessness might have increased, but we must not allow our love to grow cold. We must learn to endure through the power of the Holy Spirit, immersion in God’s word and the proclamation of the Gospel.
Are our lives in order for what is to come? “Every branch in Me that bears no fruit, He takes away. And every branch that bears fruit, He prunes, that it may bear more fruit.”
How is God pruning you?