A SIGN OF THE TIMES
Anyone who doesn't understand what Doctor Luke is telling us in this verse, needs only to watch the news to be reminded that this is indeed true for the modern age that we live in. Stress has become an accepted fact of life. The real question should be why does there have to be so much stress in the world. The prophet Daniel gives us some good insight into this area.
One good way to analyze this statement is to look at the speed with which we travel (run to and fro). In the garden of Eden, if Adam wanted to get somewhere in a hurry, he would have jumped bareback onto a horse and would have then been able to travel at about 30 miles per hour. Going back to the first of this century, the same would have been true. Until then, the fastest man had traveled was about 30 miles per hour. Now just imagine what it would have been like if you traveled to work this morning at 30 mph. Since the turn of this century, with the invention of the automobile and manned flight, man now attains many times the speed that was the fastest anyone had traveled in all the 5,900 years of history that had passed before. Indeed, man in running to and fro because knowledge has been increased.
A recent stress management seminar that I
attended here at Lifeway illustrated this phenomena quite well. A recent study of the growth of
knowledge throughout history shows this very dramatically. First you must take
all the knowledge obtained from the beginning of time up until the time of
Jesus Christ at the height of the
"I am a most unworthy sinner, but I have
cried out to the Lord for grace and mercy, and they have covered me completely.
I have found the sweetest consolation since I made it my whole purpose to enjoy
His marvelous presence. For the execution of the journey to the
The prophecy that Christopher Columbus spoke of, the one that he would use to change the world forever, is found in....
Keeping in mind that the first 4,000 years of knowledge was doubled in only 1,500 years is just the beginning. All the knowledge of the human race would double again between 1500 and 1800, a mere 300 years. Now things really begin to pick up. Between 1800 and 1900, human knowledge would again double in 100 years.
A good example of this is to take a moment to look at the technology of war. Think for a moment. What type of weapons were used in the Civil War? World War I? World War II? The Civil War was fought in the 1860's. World War I is fought only 50 years later. World War II is fought only 30 years after World War I. Yet the Civil War began with horses and calvary charges and World War II ended with nuclear warfare. Do you begin to see the magnitude of the change in mankind's knowledge in just 80 years? You can begin to see how stress has become a way of life for Americans and the world.
There are many kinds of stress in the world
today, however. Many of you may remember Colonel Oliver North, the center of a
firestorm that we now call the Iran-Contra Scandal. Many do not realize that
Oliver North is a dedicated Christian. It was during these stressful days for
him and his family that, although totally surrounded by federal security
officers, a little old lady presented a small 3x5 card to the colonel. The
words on that card, just like the words that so influenced
So you see, God can work wonders in the midsts of our stressful situations. Returning to the subject of the increase in knowledge, during the next 50 years, from 1900 to 1950, all of human knowledge doubles again. From 1950 to 1970, it doubles again. By 1980, all of human knowledge is doubling every decade. Now we have entered the computer age. The next 5 years sees another doubling of knowledge. By 1990, it is doubling at a rate of 2.5 years. Today knowledge is doubling at the staggering rate of every 18 months. In other words, from the beginning of recorded history until 1900, mankind's knowledge has increased by 800%. However since the beginning of 1900 until now, knowledge has increased over 6,400%. Put another way, all of the human knowledge that we have obtained to date will amount to less than 1/2th of what we will know by the turn of the millennium, which is less than 2 years away. Yes, as Daniel had prophesied, knowledge is indeed increasing!
With all of this going on around us, is it any wonder that we feel fearful sometimes. God has an answer for that also in...
II Timothy 1:6-7
Now let's go back to Doctor Luke and finish the sermon that Jesus is giving on the fearful times we are living in. Verse 26 is followed by verses 27 and 28 which state...
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