Are there any readers who think this is prophetic of their own family, their own children, their own siblings at this time? I would say, in almost every case, NOT! There are many faithful students of the Bible who feel the last days are very near, if not already opening on the world’s stage. And this is a family condition that Jesus says unequivocally will be operative in these days. Is there anything that should throw more fear or attention into parents and grandparents than these words of Jesus as He answers His disciples’ question, “What will be the signs of your coming again? Most of us cannot conceive that this would be true of our family. Most of us quickly think that Jesus is speaking of other families far from us, or families of other religions, and other lands; religions that reject Christ as God, and are hostile to Christianity. Yet the context says that the hatred that causes this rebellion, a turning against family members, is a hatred of Christ, and of His gospel and what it teaches about life in this world.
Already there is a great divide between the younger generation and their parents; whether God’s commandments are true and worth obeying or rejecting. We see it in the culture in what is accepted and what is not; we see it in the current controversy concerning marriage and same sex relationships; we see it in the view of whether or not life is sacred, and if infant and other human life can be easily discarded and thrown on the trash heap; we see it in the behavior of government agencies which do not hold integrity dear or public trust inviolate; we see it in the view of truth, i.e. lies are not evil if they accomplish a “worthy purpose such as keeping me or my party in power; we see it in how young people and others vote and for whom they vote with no articulate or coherent reason as to why. There is a very definite division between the generations, but particularly even among families which consider themselves Christian. Young people hook up, they do not follow God’s commandments concerning sexual purity and marriage; this is true in Christian as well as non-Christian contexts. The words “I hate God and “I hate Christ, and “I hate you may not have been said yet in so many words from their mouths, but their lives and their actions shout it out to all who have ears to hear. I dare say we already see the prophetic truth of our Lord’s words in our midst in 2013; and their most graphic fulfillment is coming down the pike.
Jesus would not have warned us so personally if He did not think there was a solution to which we can give heed. The first part of the solution is faith; do you believe Jesus? If you do you will not turn a blind eye to His warnings. Your priorities and your actions will reveal whether or not you believe. If you have children in the home you will put every effort into discipling them in the faith and in their love for and knowledge of Jesus and His Word. You will counteract the culture that is inundating them with false ideas that are the opposite of God’s commands. As parents in the place of God, our Father, you will seek to protect their hearts and minds against ungodly practices and teachings all around them in the world; TV, movies, music, entertainment, school, the friends with whom they hang, the cool trends, you name it.
Remember the Bible calls Satan the Prince of the Power of the Air. That means his influence is everywhere. And Jesus promises: “He who remains firm to the end will be saved. Is that you? Is it your children? I hope so, because there will be great divides in many families, and it will result in murder, and heartache that may never be assuaged. The excuses, “I never imagined; “I just did not know; “I did not know what my children were really thinking; “I never thought it was all that bad; these excuses do not hold water. Devour God’s Word and pass it on to your children and grandchildren. Do not give up until the end. You cannot afford spiritual lethargy. It will be too late if you do so now.