There was a gospel song composed in 1942, right in the middle of World War II, by Mr. R.E. Winsett that has been recorded by gospel singers, southern gospel quartets and many other singing groups over the last 50-60 years. It was originally recorded by the Sheltons in the 1960’s and was almost immediately followed suit by just about every gospel group during that time. The words to the song, especially the first verse, were applicable then and are still true in todays’ time. Maybe even more. You will certainly recognize the song as you read the following words of that first verse:
Troublesome times are here, filling men’s hearts with fear
Freedom we all hold dear now is at stake
Humbling your hearts to God saves from the chastening rod
Seek the way pilgrims trod, Christians awake
The song of course is titled “Jesus Is Coming Soon” and I’m sure most of you have heard it many times. But what I want to consider this evening is that first verse and especially the first four words.
I think we can all surely agree that, indeed, troublesome times are here. I realize past generations have also believed the same thing. However, if we take a close look at history it will show that the troubled times during those days do not really compare to what we see today. There has always been the same type of sin and perversion that goes on today but not to the degree and certainly not with the complacency and hardness of heart that is prevalent today. These things have become so accepted in our society that even the church has a tendency to overlook them and to convince themselves that it is not all that bad. So let’s just take a look at a few examples of what I am talking about.
The first institution that God created was marriage between one man and one woman for life. As stated, this implies there are numerous violations of this arrangement today. One is that is has become acceptable to engage in divorce for any reason or no reason at all. It is acceptable to just live together and engage in sex without marriage or even outside of marriage. Some people even believe that God ordains polygamy marriage. this is just the beginning of the list of perversions of the institute of Marriage.
The world wants us to accept that sex between two people of the same gender is normal if they say it is. They want us to believe that same-sex marriage is a right and that it should be a protected by our laws. The fact is, God says that homosexuality is an abomination in His eyes and man will reap what he sows in his own body besides spending eternity in the bottomless pit and the flames of hell’s fire designed for the Devil and his angels. For me this is the ultimate perversion of sex and marriage.
What about the sanctity of human life? Mass murder of innocent unborn babies is committed every day at government-funded clinics. The majority of the abortions performed are for reasons of convenience not for medical reasons. What a horrible atrocity this is! Precious innocent children that God Himself carefully formed in their mother’s womb but were never allowed to see the light of day. Anger should swell up inside of each one of us and our voices should be heard much louder that they are. God help us!
I have mentioned only a few of those things that prove we are certainly in those very troublesome times. It seems that the world is spinning out of control like of have stated in some of my previous posts. But what do we expect? Satan is the temporary ruler of this earth and he is certainly bent on doing what he can to destroy and at the very least render God’s people helpless to do anything about the situation. And, in fact, we don’t have the power in ourselves to withstand the wiles of the Devil but the Holy Spirit does. What we have to do is let Him take control of our lives instead of letting our flesh be in control. I don’t know about you but I get very angry when I see what is going on and I want to be able to do something about it but in my own way. And what a mistake that is.
But let’s finish this on a positive note. The second verse of the song along with the chorus tells us what is eventually going to happen and who is ultimately in control. And that is what made the song so popular and what led it to be named the gospel song of the year in 1969. I might mention that the Oak Ridge Boys recorded it in 2005 on their album Common Thread and it immediately was a hit again. It has also been recorded as recently as 2010. As you read the following words to the second verse and the chorus I hope you, like me, are reminded of what we have to look forward to.
Troubles will soon be o’er, happy forevermore
When we meet on that shore, free from all care
Rising up in the sky, telling this world goodbye
Homeward we then shall fly, glory to share.
Jesus is coming soon, morning or night or noon
Many will meet their doom, trumpets will sound
All of the dead shall rise, righteous meet in the skies
Going where no one dies, heavenward bound.
What a powerful song. Yes, troublesome times are here but, praise God, troubles will soon be o’er and Jesus is coming soon!!!