One of the "signs of the times" as mentioned in this sermon (which is often referred to as the "Olivet Discourse") is the utter lawlessness of the times resulting in a "love gone cold." I see a cycle here that Jesus may have been alluding to. When sin abounds, evil happens, and we find ourselves losing love for the evildoers. Vengeance along with hatred is a natural response the world has to those who commit atrocities, whether on a national level, or in our local communities. We all have just come through what is referred to as the "Dallas Massacre" of police officers. Many of us can't forget 9/11 and there are still a number of people who still shudder at the words, "Pearl Harbor." Crime is to be hated, but we find it so difficult to "love the criminals" who commit it. Sin destroys love.
But the cycle I spoke of can go back to the 1st letter recorded in the Book of Revelation chapter two. It was addressed to the church in Ephesus and the Lord rebuked the believers there for "leaving their first love." Most people see this to mean that the believers had loved the Lord Jesus fervently when they got saved and they loved Him more than anyone else. But what Jesus noted was that their love had lost its fervency and even grew cold, or at least lukewarm. And the implication of such an insincere love was a rather heartless service to the Lord. And the ripple affect of that would be a less than fervent desire to reach out to the world with the love of Christ. And the effect of that would be that people wouldn't come to experience God's love and know the live-changing Gospel of Christ. And men without Christ continue to live in sin. And sin grows and love goes cold. And the cycle repeats itself.
Christian, don't let your love grow cold in spite of the lawlessness around you. People need the Lord. And people need to experience the love of God through you and me. We still will hate the sin, but we must ask God to give us the Christ-like love of our Savior, who, on the cross said, "Father, forgive them for they know not what they do." That kind of love can destroy lawlessness in anyone who experiences the salvation only Jesus can offer.