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"Joyful Curmudgeon" An oxymoron?
No! I see all the beauty of God's creation and I'm joyful.  At the same time, I see all the suffering and corruption going on in the world, and feel called to help expose and end it so that we may have true peace and compassion.


Mark of the Beast – 16 September 2006
By Mary T. Hoffman

The “mark of the beast,” “666,” “end times,” “the rapture,” “Armageddon,” “anti-Christ” – have you noticed how often you hear these words lately? Many of those who profess to be Christians are almost obsessed with discussions about these topics, and spend time in fearful speculation about them.

I was talking to someone who mentioned the anti-Christ and speculated about who it will turn out to be. I told her what I thought: if the anti-Christ is indeed an individual, the one giveaway of the fact would be their lack of love. No matter how personable, charming, powerful, strong, popular – the lack of love and compassion would be a giveaway. The one I was chatting with agreed with me.

In Matthew 13, Jesus uses the parable of the wheat and the tares to explain the separation of the “good” from the “bad.” When the separation of the “wheat” and the “tares” occurs, I believe it is going to be love that will be the basic criterion used. The “wheat” will be motivated by love and compassion; the “tares” will not.

Matthew 13:29-30

30 “Allow both to grow together until the harvest; and in the time of the harvest I will say to the reapers, ‘First gather up the tares and bind them in bundles to burn them up; but gather the wheat into my barn.’ ”
~ New American Standard Bible

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