In God's providence,
mercy is offered before judgement.
Noah's Ark was His
offer of mercy to a darkening world before His judgement.
Frank Bartleman was
one of the key men used by God in the Great Azusa Street Revival which
occurred during the first decade of the 20th century.
In 1905 he wrote the
Mercy rejected means
judgement, and on a corresponding scale. In all the history of God's
world there has always been first the offer of divine mercy, then
First comes Christ
on the white horses of mercy. Then follows the red, black and pale
horses of war, famine and death. The prophets ceased not day and night
to faithfully warn Israel, but their tears and entreaties for the most
part proved in vain.
destruction of Jerusalem in AD 70 which resulted in the extermination of
a million Jews, and the captivity of millions more, was preceded by the
offer of divine mercy at the hands of the Son of God Himself.
In 1859 a great
revival wave visited our country (the USA) sweeping half a million souls
into the fountain of salvation. Immediately the terrible carnage of
1861-1865 followed. (The American civil war)
And so as we
anticipate the coming revival which is already assuming world wide
proportions, we wonder will not judgement follow mercy, as at other
times. And judgement in the proportion to the mercy extended. The
present war like attitude and distress of nations makes us wonder if the
judgement to follow may not even plunge us into the 'Tribulation' - the
When Frank Bartleman
penned these words in 1905 he had no way of knowing how accurate his
words might prove to be.
Five years after the
Great Revival ended the Great War began.
The great revival
began in Wales in 1904 and ran until the following year, before bursting
upon America from 1906 - 1909, and so the revival - or God's mercy - ran
for more or less the length of time that the Great War of 1914-18
The world is morally
darkening at a rapid pace. A terrifying pace.
unexpectedly, a well known Hollywood actor/director decides to make a
film portraying the final days of The Christ here on earth. The words
would be spoken in Aramaic with subtitles. On paper it stood little
chance of any success. Who but God could have known the impact it would
Already, as I write
this, it is the 8th highest grossing film of all time and about to pass
Its controversy has
been its publicity. Every media is debating it. It has
become a must see film.
This week I picked
up the April 12th 2004 edition of the powerfully international 'Time'
magazine, because on the cover was the illustration of Christ with His
cross and the banner headline 'Why did Jesus have to die?'
with the subtitle 'As Easter arrives and millions still flock to see The
Passion, the reasons behind his sacrifice are debated anew'
In the remarkably
favourable article each double page had a strong headline accurately
stating the claims of scripture (then writing about the debate on these
claims below) These headlines declared
death and Resurrection, Christ triumphs over Satan and rescues
humanity from evil
sacrificed himself to make amends for sins against God
By his example,
Christ inspires people to live in obedience to God's ways
The final paragraph
in the six page article opens with these words...
Passion of the Christ has certainly done its bit to combat Christianity
And finishes with
'..it is a
reminder that the question of why Jesus died requires some sort of
response from anyone who reasons out his or her faith-and that question
will not evaporate come Easter Sunday.'
unexpectedly the gospel
has been powerfully proclaimed to all and
sundry throughout the 21st century media conscious world.
It is God's Mercy.
originally written in 2004 it is interesting that in late 2008 early
2009 what appears to be judgement has fallen in the form of the
worst western financial downturn in living memory, weather patterns are playing havoc around the world, fear roams the streets in
the form of teenage violence and family breakdown has reached an all
time high. In 2014 some of the worst weather on record was being experienced in the UK and the USA)