You should know this, Timothy, that in the last days there will be very difficult times. For people will love only themselves and their money. They will be boastful and proud, scoffing at God, disobedient to their parents, and ungrateful. They will consider nothing sacred. They will be unloving and unforgiving; they will slander others and have no self-control. They will be cruel and hate what is good. They will betray their friends, be reckless, be puffed up with pride, and love pleasure rather than God. They will act religious, but they will reject the power that could make them godly. Stay away from people like that! (NLT)
When it comes to world history, there is no golden age. We sometimes hear people fondly recalling the good old days when life was simpler and better. Nostalgia provides us with a rosy pair of glasses through which we see a remembered world. But our nostalgic memories are very selective. Some things were better in the past, but some things are much better today. Those good old days were good for some and not so good for others.
If we think that things are so much worse today than in previous times, we need to brush up our understanding of world history. Our text today provides one such opportunity to reassess history. Paul’s description of humanity strikes a chord with us. People today resemble people then. Human nature stubbornly remains much the same.
When Paul mentions the last days, he is referring to his time and our time: the term refers to the period between the first and second coming of Jesus. And from the context, we understand that such ungodly conduct arises out of a false notion of God. If we get God wrong, all else falls in a heap.
Right belief does not always guarantee right behaviour, but wrong belief will always lead to wrong behaviour.