What will be the heart of the receivers? Will it be what is described in 2nd Timothy 3? When we read “last days” there are two basic interpretations. It refers to a short period of a few years before the return of Christ, or the first days are essentially Old Testament times and the last days are New Testament times. If the latter is fully or even partially true, then you can see the next part is often lived out in front of you.
“For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power.”
Who would be “heartless”? Perhaps someone with a heart of stone?
What is it to be “treacherous”? The Greek word means a betrayer or traitor. Literally giving forward into someone’s hands. It is handing someone over to the state.
Does the institutional church have only an “appearance of godliness”?
It is easy to say that you love everyone, but what is your heart really like?
Can you look at someone particular in another part of the world enslaved and have an individual love for them as a human being created in the image of God?
Can you see the joy of a man celebrating a reconciled family who looks so different than you?
Can you see the passion to follow Christ in a man who lives out a passion you have?
Can you see in a man who does not speak your language, lost his family to the malicious acts of others, and call him your brother?
Can you look in the face of a man who seeks to reconcile with you and show love in deed?
In Matthew 5:23 we saw “there remember that your brother has something against you” which had no implication that it is only applicable to a recent issue. Perhaps the issue is over 8 years old, as it is in this case. The priority of reconciliation remains forefront.
There are so many who have something against someone else and go to their grave harboring that resentment. Then there are those, like Paul and Peter, who reconcile and celebrate a relationship where they can truly say “my beloved brother”.
Gentlemen, our day to enter the grave is coming. You have been addressed repeatedly and publicly. Your brother has something against you.