At that time his voice shook the earth, but now he has promised, “Yet once more I will shake not only the earth but also the heavens.” This phrase, “Yet once more,” indicates the removal of things that are shaken—that is, things that have been made—in order that the things that cannot be shaken may remain. Therefore let us be grateful for receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, and thus let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe, for our God is a consuming fire. Hebrews 12:26
It was an earthquake. The whole mountain, Mt. Sinai, trembled violently when God descended upon it. The law was given, God spoke, and His power proved that He had ultimate authority. To have stood at the base of that mountain would have been awe inspiring, even terrifying. Exodus 19
One day, there will be another shaking. (Haggai 2) Perhaps we are feeling its beginnings! God will shake, not just the mountains, but the earth and the heavens combined. He will end the corrupt power of kings and rulers and establish the reign of His Son, Jesus. He will also destroy the evil one and all of his demons, the very spirits who worked through every flawed leader to inflict cruelty and corruption. What a day of promise for God’s children and what a day of dread for all those who have rejected the way of salvation and the rule of God in their lives.
Shaking separates. Shaking reveals what is solid beneath the veneer. What is pure is left, what is defiled breaks loose. So it shall be in the end times, and yet, so it is today for any of us who are in a time of trembling. In God’s sovereignty, suffering has defined our current season of life. Our world trembles and, with the shaking, the substance at the center of our lives is revealed. For the one who has planted the seeds of the Word of God in their heart and learned to live in kingdom shoes, faith in God remains. For others, a vast emptiness opens up behind the veneer of religiosity.
Your righteousness is like the highest mountains, your judgments like the deepest sea. O LORD, You preserve man and beast. Psalm 36:6 Oh, that I would have my world in order! When I look into the face of Jesus, I tremble with awe. When I look into the fires of adversity, I tremble with fear, yet also with a faith that sustains. When I look into the expanse of eternity, I tremble with anticipation. Evil will be vanquished and the righteous ones will remain in the courts of our God.
Trembling is my opportunity for introspection. Reveal the substance of my life. Amen