The Last Days and Preparing to Meet the Lord, Part 2
- By Sean Gooding -
"Where there is no revelation, the people cast off restraint; But happy is he who keeps the law."
By now, I hope that we have established that the above verse is about the proper teaching and preaching of God's Holy Word. Even just reading the scriptures is so important, that the Devil will tempt you not to read because you don't understand.
I had a conversation with a lady from the church I pastor this morning. She was talking about reading in the book of Luke. As she was about to read, the devil comes along and tells her, 'you don't understand this anyway; don't read it.' But she perseveres; and lo and behold, the Holy Spirit teaches her about producing fruit from a parable of Jesus' in Luke 13:6-9. She, by the power of the Holy Spirit, was challenged to work at producing more fruit in her Christian life.
This is why it is important to read the Bible and to allow God's Holy Spirit that lives in us to show us the truth of the scriptures. The Holy Spirit always leads us into truth, to obedience and to change. He ever lives to guide us into a deeper and more open relationship with the Lord.
We have shown and the scripture teaches that when the Word of God is read, preached and made available to the masses, it acts as a restraint against the progress of evil in a society. This is not just about Christians per se, but all peoples are restrained by the proper teaching and ready access to the Bible. This why there is such a push to remove the Bible from the public forum.
Here in the Toronto area, we have a situation where a member of the Toronto city council is trying to make it either very difficult or impossible for a church group to rent a city facility to host a church service. The push to remove the truth from the public is very, very real. You see, it is impossible to lie to people who know the truth. It is like knowing authentic currency and then coming across counterfeit currency and being able to identify it. When we have the truth of God's word openly taught, openly and readily available to the public for consumption, then when lies come along, one is able to spot them and avoid them.
Let us take a look at a phenomenon that is happening right now; we see it in the malls, in the stores, we see it in classrooms and in very public places.
Exodus 20: 12, "Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee."
I was taught this as a child. I am commanded from the Ten Commandments to 'honor' my parents. To respect them, to carry their names well and to listen to them.
In the New Testament, we see Ephesians 6: 1-3, "Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right. Honour thy father and mother; which is the first commandment with promise; That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth."
This adds fuel to the fire by further explaining the idea of honoring your parents. We are called to obey our parents in the Lord. I am to do what I am told. This implies submission and humility. But today we have a society that encourages kids to disobey their parents. The government has gone behind parents' backs and provided to their children things that the parents have not consented to. Children can get contraceptives and vaccinations that the parents forbid by going around their parent's authority through the schools. It happened to my wife and I as parents; we found out that our kids could and did get stuff at the school that we had forbidden.
There is a deliberate plan to subvert the parental authority. Many of the child protection agencies, both in the US and in Canada, have the position that the children belong to the state, not the parents. Thus, the state can subvert the parent's authority. They can only do this because the idea that children must obey their parents and the fact that the children belong to the parents has been removed out of the public sphere. Children used to be taught, even in public schools, that they should obey their parents. I was. Now they are told that they can threaten their parents if they do something that they, the child, does not like.
The entire chain of authority has been overturned. Now, we have a society of unruly, undisciplined kids that have been unleashed on our teachers, our police forces and our society. The children have 'cast off restraint' since there is no revelation of the truth.
Further, we discussed some verses from Timothy, verses of instruction and clarity to the young preacher about the power of the Holy Word of God. In 2 Timothy 3: 16-17, we see these verses:
"All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works."
The Word of God is profitable. This is very important. The world system says that the Word of God is outdated, no longer relevant; but God says it is profitable.
We talked in the previous lessons about doctrine and reproof, and we have begun to talk about good works; and we will get there today as well. But if you do not think that the Word of God is profitable, then there is no desire to read it, to study it and to obey it. So, our very mind frame must be in line with the mind frame of God. Just like the lady I mentioned from this morning, she had the mindset that the Word of God is profitable; thus, when tempted not to read, she was able to resist the temptation, and God made the reading of the Book profitable to her.
I am amazed at how many of God's people do not make even the reading of God's Word a priority. I am not perfect, far from it, but if I go a day or so without reading the scriptures, and sadly it can happen, I get the Holy Spirit in me calling me out on it; and then I repent and read it. The Bible is profitable and valuable; it is God's message to us, to mature us and mold us into the image of Jesus.
How do you view the Holy Word of God?
Since the resurrection of the nation of Israel in May 1948, we have been in the last days. We have seen the rise of the New World Order as a system that is subverting the sovereignty of nations, infiltrating religion and exposing compromise, trying to silence or squash true Godly churches and trying to unify the world under global strategies. Soon, either by death or by the Rapture, we are going to be giving an account of the fruit that we have produced in the life we lived after we were saved.
Last week we began to look at Romans 12:1-2 in conjunction with Proverbs 29:18 and 2 Timothy 3:16-17. We talked about giving ourselves as living sacrifices to the Lord, and we examined verses like this in Matthew 6:33:
"But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you."
Or this one from the Gospel of Luke, Luke 9:23:
"And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me."
These are powerful and profitable verses that remind us that God wants us to surrender our lives. There are many who think that they would die for Jesus. But most are not living for Him. If you are not willing to be a living sacrifice, you will not be a dead one. All the people who died for the cause of Jesus Christ, first lived for Him.
Today we will explore the second part of Romans 12:1-2. Let us be reminded of the verses at hand:
"I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God."
Once we have made the decision to present our bodies to Jesus for His use, we are then instructed to 'not be conformed to this world.'
Have any of you ever made frozen lollies? You make a juice of some kind, then you pour the liquid into the molds, place a stick in them and let them freeze. The juice takes on the shape of whatever mold you put it in. The idea of being conformed is the same thing. But this is not really a physical thing; it is the mind that we are to work on. Notice that, in the next phrase, the transformation take place by the 'renewing of the mind.' In 1 Peter 1:15-16 we see this:
"But just as He who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do, for it is written: 'Be holy, because I am holy.'"
As well, see 2 Corinthians 6:16-17:
"What agreement can exist between the temple of God and idols? For we are the temple of the living God. As God has said: 'I will live with them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they will be My people. Therefore come out from among them and be separate, says the Lord. Touch no unclean thing, and I will receive you.'"
When we think of being holy, there is an idea of being pious. Most often, that is seen in a negative connotation. But God is Holy; the word really means separated. God is separated from us; He is perfect, first of all, and this separates us, so we need to be saved through Jesus. And when we are covered in Jesus' holiness, we can fellowship with God; He is no longer separated from us. But in a practical sense, God's wants our way of thinking and subsequently acting to be separated from the world; we are called to be Holy. Our thoughts, our opinions and our very framework for life should be solely based on the Word of God.
Many Christians want to transform the way they act, but actions are a symptom, not a cause. First, we must change the way we think. We must stop conforming to the thought processes of the world. Let me give an example:
The world teaches that a man and woman can live together without going through a marriage process; it is all the same. But it is not; God expects there to be a marriage ceremony of some kind. Whether big or small, civil or religious, there must be a ceremony of some kind and the legal acknowledgement that they are now one person. So, a saved person who is in a relationship must reject the mindset of the world and accept God's mindset. A young person who is being taught at school that they do not have to submit and obey Mom and Dad, must suppress these ideas with the truth of God's word and not conform to the world philosophy.
Once we have decided to surrender our bodies, the next step is to work on not conforming to the world system. This takes self-examination; you and I need to ask questions? What does God say about this topic? What does the Bible teach about this situation? How would God have me handle this? From time management, money management, how we exist in our marriages, raise our children, what friends we have, the church we attend, and on and on we go. What must I do to stop conforming to the world? Once you make the move, the Holy Spirit will step in and assist you. He is here to guide us into all truth, thus helping us to conform to God's holiness and not the world system. See John 16: 13-14:
"However, when the Spirit of truth comes, He will guide you into all truth. For He will not speak on His own, but He will speak what He hears, and He will declare to you what is to come. He will glorify Me by taking from what is Mine and disclosing it to you."
Notice it says "He will guide you into all truth."
You and I must be willing to follow. Now we have surrendered our bodies; and as we are no longer conforming to the world, but conforming to the Word of God, we can begin the process of doing good works in our service to the Lord and be ready to face the judgment that for sure is coming our way.
The Butterfly Effect - By Pete Garcia -
When the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was desirable to make one wise, she took from its fruit and ate; and she gave also to her husband with her, and he ate. Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves loin coverings. Genesis 3:6-7
Unsure how to write what I want to say. It's very much on the tip of my brain's tongue but has yet to manifest itself in any real fashion. It is something akin to mankind's timeline here on earth being wrong. Well, not so much wrong, but off, if that makes any sense. We all know that the world that was intended, ended when Adam and Eve disobeyed God and sin and death were introduced. So here we are now, some 6,000 years removed from that point, and things seem very wrong.
I feel very much like how Neo felt in the movie The Matrix. He sensed something wrong with the fictional world he portrayed living in and came to find out it was really a false digital simulation overlaying the 'world of the real'. Most people in the world today go about their daily lives, and think, this is how life should be, or this is how life has always been. Sure, people might have their gripes and complaints if life isn't turning out exactly how they wished it would, but, they don't necessarily question the legitimacy of the system in and of itself. For the most part, people have come to accept that life isn't fair. They all eventually come to accept the current state of this world as reality, as if all of this were the normal state of things. But in reality (as the late Chuck Missler used to say) we are living in an altered copy of the real, reality.
And it is almost impossible to see it now, because we are in the midst of it, like frogs in the proverbial warming pot. We are too close to the trees to see the forest. It is as if we (humanity) have spent all our time walking inside the eye of a hurricane, completely oblivious to the trail of destruction behind us, or the dangerous threat in front of us. Most people don't care, because all they see when they look up, is blue skies. Our proximity to the direness of the situation prevents us from seeing the big picture. Besides, the human race generally resets every seventy-years or so, and thus, we are perpetually having to relearn things the hard way. At least that's the way it feels.
I guess the point I am trying to get to is that where we are today, is not how we were intended to be. Obviously, we are here in the 21st-century and as a race and species, we have lived in a fallen state for so long that this is the way it was supposed to be. Setting the very real concept of sin as a disease aside for a moment, were we supposed to have iPhones, motor vehicles, electric Lazy-boy couches, microwave food, flat-screen televisions, an international space station, Facebook/ Instagram / Twitter, Siri, Alexis, quantum computers, life coaches, Socialism, Darwinism, Nihilism, 401K retirement plans, death taxes, sales taxes, income taxes, property taxes, Amazon Prime, goat yoga, Fashion Week, Shark Week, meaningless education, actuaries, bureaucrats, etc. etc., ad nauseam?
I don't think so.
Life has become overly complex, and unnecessarily complicated.
Which begs the question; Are we at the pinnacle of human evolution? Clarification: not Darwinian Evolution (i.e. slime->apes->cavemen), but technological evolution; our march toward modernity and the human condition.
Is this as good as it gets?
Where we ever supposed to be this modernized?
I don't think so.
Which made me think of Chaos Theory and the Butterfly Effect.
In chaos theory, the butterfly effect is the sensitive dependence on initial conditions in which a small change in one state of a deterministic nonlinear system can result in large differences in a later state. (1)
In other, simpler terms...
The Butterfly Effect is the scientific theory that a single occurrence,
no matter how small, can change the course of the universe forever. (2)
Think about it this way, from Adam and Eve (circa 4000BC) up until the invention of the practical steam engine in 1814, mankind was limited to the speed of horse and the speed of wind. So, if you believe in Adam and Eve, and the rest of the Biblical account of human history, then mankind was limited to the speed of horse for around 5,814 years. Looking at the macro view, the major inventions dealing with travel and information processing specifically has not been very long in the grand scheme of things. From 2019, it has only been:
Needless to say, once man cracked the code on some of the more rudimentary developments (printing press, the steam engine, laws of physics, etc.), Pandora's box had been opened and there was no turning back. Although mankind generally resets every 70-80 years (Psalm 90:9-10), we are being inescapably thrust forward without any hope of stopping. Again, this was not a surprise to God. He predicted this very thing at the tower of Babel.
But the Lord came down to see the city and the tower which the sons of men had built. And the Lord said, "Indeed the people are one and they all have one language, and this is what they begin to do; now nothing that they propose to do will be withheld from them. Genesis 11:5-6
Most of you know the story already. God put a kibosh on what was going on and physically and geographically separated everyone by language and presumably, genetics. So what has brought mankind back to the tower of Babel moment?
"But you, Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book until the time of the end; many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall increase." Daniel 12:4 (circa 545BC)
Without a doubt, the prophet Daniel living in the 6th-century BC, lived in what we would call, the height of the progressive stagnation of mankind. It was the ancient world. People were limited to the speed of horse, and the speed of sailboats. Mankind's technology was progressing, but at a snail's pace.
However, Daniel was given some of the most specific prophecies ever given regarding the future of the world. There were two different pictures of the subsequent kingdoms that would follow the Babylonians. The first was the multi-metallic statue dream that Nebuchadnezzar had (man's perspective), and secondly, the monstrous, hybrid animals (from God's perspective). These are found primarily in Daniel 2, 7-8. And although most of these kingdoms are in our history books, there is still one kingdom left that has yet to rise. Historically, the Persians conquered the Babylonians, the Greeks conquered the Persians, and the Romans conquered the Greeks. The last kingdom has yet to come together in its final state, but we are starting to witness it take shape today.
What's of interest to the topic at hand, is not the rehashing of the order of the kingdoms, but what the unintended side effects were because of it.
The Medes-Persians were similar to the Babylonians, thus the transfer of language, customs, and culture was not all that dramatic. They might have changed a few of their god's names, but, the Medes and the Persians were still physically related to their southern cousins (the Babylonians). They largely viewed ruler-ship as that divine right belonging to the king and queens of their own royalty.
But the Greeks, in particular under Alexander the Great, began the process of Hellenization of the then-known world. From Italy to Afghanistan, Greek culture, customs, and language began to spread throughout the massive kingdom. Alexander understood the power of culture, and how to rule people without always having to use the pointy end of a spear. And thus, that was the way it was for several centuries until the Romans began to rise up as the geopolitical power the second-century BC.
Although the Romans conquered the Greeks through military might (or the threat of it), the Greeks conquered the Romans through language, sports, religion, philosophy, and culture. Hellenization became the subtle coup d'é·tat that really changed Rome from the inside out.
Roman elites began studying the Greek philosophers using Koine Greek and would come to embrace the stories of Greek heroes and of their Greek Gods. Although they would eventually change the names to more Romanized ones, yet, they were essentially the same. Even our Christian New Testament was written in Koine Greek and would remain that way until Jerome translated it into Latin (the Roman native tongue) in the 4th-century AD. In a way, the Roman Empire really just became an extension of the Greek Empire for another six-centuries.
From the 4th-century through the 19th centuries, we have seen the West, morph from that of Greek dominance, to that of Roman, to that of the Byzantines, to the Holy Roman Empire, to the rise and fall of numerous European superpowers (Portugal, Spain, France, England, Germany, etc.) to what we have today...a united Europe, better known as the European Union (EU).
The last two major empires the world has seen has been the British and the Americans. The British dominance lasted roughly from the 18th-20th centuries (e.g., the sun never set on their empire). American dominance has lasted from the 20th-21st centuries (our present). Essentially, the English language has dominated the planet for the last four hundred years (or so). It has become the most dominant language on the planet. You could say that the English language is the world's reserve currency of languages.
As for our own cultural coup d'é·tat, we have seen this same scenario play out here in the 19th-21st centuries. European Ivy league schools and seminaries become secularized and largely post-Christian. The American elite became enamored by the sophisticated Europeans, and begin importing their enlightened ideas (Darwinism, Marxism, Frankfurt School, etc.) and philosophies (Existentialism, Nihilism, British and German idealism, Anti-Semitism, etc.) back here to our own American schools and seminaries. And within a century, we too, have become as they; a post-Christian nation.
Back to Daniel.
So the prophet and statesman Daniel lived between the late 600-500 BC, which was 500-years before Jesus Christ walked the earth. Another way to look at it is, during that time period man was limited to the speed of horse. In Jesus' day (pre-resurrection), mankind was still limited to the speed of horse. The great cultures then were largely what we would call, Middle-Eastern (pre-Islam), while the rest of the world was largely divided amongst the barbarians and the far eastern kingdoms.
All Daniel knew (as a man), was what he was limited too in his own day there in the heart of the Babylonian kingdom (modern-day Iraq). He couldn't have known that man would get smarter and be able to travel to and fro across the earth, because, well, he was limited to the knowledge of his day...just as we are.
For example, go back and find some movies or television shows from the 1980s or earlier, and see what they thought the future would look like. Listed here are a few examples of movies that got the future very wrong, by the year they were made and the year they attempted to portray:
Granted, these are the only examples I could find without doing exhaustive research. Now, keeping in mind that these films were made for the purpose of entertainment, nevertheless, each of these films had tons of money (millions of dollars), expansive expertise, and massive resources thrown at them to make them appear plausible.
They (the writers/directors) wanted you to believe in their version of the future because that is part and parcel with selling you the entertainment. The only problem they had, was when they wrote and made these films, they were limited by the technology and information available to them of their day. The funny thing is that all these movies all get the future hilariously wrong, and that is only going back a couple of decades.
In Daniel's day, the only educated people were the wealthy. Travel rarely exceeded a 100-mile radius from where one was born. If Hollywood, with all of its wealth and resources, couldn't get their version of the future correct, and they were only predicting it by a few decades, how could a Jewish prophet, in Babylonian captivity, 2,352 years removed from anything other than a horse or a sailboat, possibly conceive of what the end of humanity would look like? The conclusions he reported were:
Now, consider some thoughts regarding Buckminster Fuller's 1982 widely accepted treatise on how quickly knowledge is accumulating.
Buckminster Fuller created the "Knowledge Doubling Curve"; he noticed that until 1900 human knowledge doubled approximately every century. By the end of World War II, knowledge was doubling every 25 years. Today things are not as simple as different types of knowledge have different rates of growth. For example, nanotechnology knowledge is doubling every two years and clinical knowledge every 18 months. But on average human knowledge is doubling every 13 months. According to IBM, the build-out of the "internet of things" will lead to the doubling of knowledge every 12 hours. (4)
While Daniel wasn't given overly specific information regarding what kind of technology we would possess (i.e., he didn't predict we would land on the moon or have high definition flat-screen televisions), he was given the general conditions which have been proven true. So true that many liberal critics of the Bible, have wrongly concluded that his book must have been written in the 2nd century BC. However, this is how we know that these prophecies didn't come from just a man's perspective...because remember, men are limited to the knowledge of their day, and mankind resets (so to speak) every 70-80 years.
IF Daniel had invented these prophecies apart from God and on his own, like Nostradamus, Helena Blavatsky, Edgar Cayce, William Branham, etc., we would know that his prophecies would be limited to the knowledge of his day.
However, given the fact that his prophecies didn't come from his own imagination, but from the angel Gabriel, then it's reasonable to believe why Daniel's prophecies were so incredibly accurate. And the fact that we have two other major prophecies accompanying them, well, then it lends credence to what Daniel was shown. We live in what Daniel describes as the Last Days.
Not to make this an exhaustive list, but I will simply lay out things in line with Daniel 12:4. Consider then the most obvious signs then:
The late, great Jack Kinsella once wrote something similar to what I'm attempting to back in 2014.
While in exile in Babylon, the prophet Daniel was given a vision of the future of Israel, up to the coming of the Messiah. Up to this point in the vision, those things that Daniel saw were relatively familiar, cities, events, people in a context that were not too far removed from his concept of reality. But then he was shown the things to come in the last days. The angel told him in Daniel 10:14 "Now I am come to make thee understand what shall befall thy people in the latter days; for yet the vision is for many days."
Daniel was so staggered by what he saw it made him faint, verse 18 records that 'one like the appearance of a man' touched him, and strengthened him so that he could go on. Daniel tried to describe those things he saw using terminology that made sense to him, but it comes to us as a series of baffling symbols, images, and beasts. The things he saw terrified him. Because the visions were so completely removed from his understanding of reality, he was unable to describe them in terms that even he was able to comprehend. And so it remained, for thousands of years. Great Bible commentators like Calvin and Luther did not even attempt to interpret the books of Daniel, or the Revelation, for that matter, saying they were allegorical or symbolic books.
Matthew Henry, writing in the 18th century, did not fare much better. Even commentators on these books in the early 20th century admitted they had trouble fitting the pieces together. After all, they dealt with a restored Israel, a revived Roman empire, and a one-world government. Such things were deemed to be impossible, therefore to be interpreted as allegories. The revealing angel understood what Daniel did not. He explained in Daniel Chapter 12, verse 4; "But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased." Today, Daniel and the Revelation are the favorite books of Bible expositors. Many of the mysteries have already been unlocked and many more grow less mysterious all the time. (5)
Without a doubt, our long march to modernity is a testament to both God's foreknowledge and our free will. God foresaw the end from the beginning (Isaiah 46:9-10), so where we are today was not a mystery to Him. He not only used the writers, prophets, and apostles to show where man came from, but where man was going with 100% accuracy.
However, where we are today, is not what was intended, yet, here we are. Not unlike the theoretical butterfly who flaps its wings in China and sets off a hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico, one little sin (Genesis 3:6) did trigger all of the subsequent events that have reverberated throughout the course of history. Did God mean for us to have nuclear-tipped ICBMs, drive-thru fast-food restaurants, and 5G wireless networks?
Yet, they were not a surprise to Him. Our corruption is both the outcroppings of mankind's fallen state and our free will. God saw man's future and the danger that it would one day come to possess, and nonetheless allowed it so that we could choose Him, over certain destruction. He has allowed our freedom to an extent, however, we are now at the end of this experiment in free will. Seeing as we have come full circle, and now nothing is being withheld from us, we have begun drifting dangerously into the realm of playing God. This was the exact same place (IMHO) where the antediluvian peoples (and Babel-builders) were just before they faced the divine judgment.
We have split the atom. We have CRISPR gene-editing technology. We are creating artificial intelligence. We are close to cracking the code on aging and immortality. We have the CERN particle collider being used to discover both the god-particle (the basic building block of the universe) and attempting to open dimensional portals. We are pushing further and further into space.
One day, Satan will use these same technological achievements to enslave the world in a global surveillance system so oppressive and vile, that there will be no escape. It will be as if the eye of the hurricane were closing and collapsing in on itself. The only escape is up. So if you are left here on the earth after the Rapture, there is no amount of prepping or survival skills that can stop Satan from completely taking over the planet (Rev. 13:1-7, 16-18). Things will become so terrible and horrifying, that should God tarry any longer than He does, no flesh would be saved to enter into the millennial kingdom.
We are not now what was intended. God had (and still has) so much better and grander plans for those who are redeemed.
Meanwhile, the world is busy patting itself on the back and admiring its own achievements, yet all these accomplishments are only drawing it ever nearer to the winepress of the fierce wrath of an almighty God.
"Let the nations be roused;
let them advance into the Valley of Jehoshaphat,
for there I will sit
to judge all the nations on every side.
Swing the sickle,
for the harvest is ripe.
Come, trample the grapes,
for the winepress is full
and the vats overflow-
so great is their wickedness!"
in the valley of decision!
For the day of the Lord is near
in the valley of decision.
Are you ready?
Midst - by Randy Nettles -
"And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate" (Daniel 9:27). The prophet Daniel is clearly referring to the last 7 years ("one week") on earth before Jesus' 2nd Coming to the earth. This time period is known as the Tribulation and/or Jacob's Trouble. Numerous Old Testament prophets referred to it as the Day of the Lord.
Does the term "in the midst" mean the exact middle or could it mean near the middle? There are 269 times in the Old Testament that use that terminology. Very few of them refer to the exact middle. Most of them are in reference to close proximity to the middle or center.
For example, in 1 Samuel 16, Samuel the prophet went to the house of Jesse of the tribe of Judah to anoint one of his sons as the king who would eventually replace Saul. Jesse had 8 sons counting David. God informed Samuel that he was to anoint David, the youngest. "Then Samuel took the horn of oil, and anointed him in the midst of his brethren..." (1 Samuel 16:13). With seven brothers, there is no exact middle, for there are four on one side of David and three on the other side of David. If there would have been 9 sons; then yes, David could have been in the exact middle of them, but as it was, he was only in their midst.
Daniel is using the original (prophetic) calendar that Moses wrote about in Genesis 7 and 8 which is in regard to the Great Flood of Noah's day. In the original calendar, one calendar year was equal to 360 days. The duration of Daniel 9:27 is for 7 calendar years of 360 days each for a total of 2520 days
The in the midst event of Daniel 9:27 is known as the Abomination of Desolation and is described in Daniel 12:11 and Revelation 13:14-15. Most Bible experts believe the A.O.D. will occur exactly 1260 days after the start of Jacob's Trouble. But what if instead, it begins 1,230 days after the start of the Tribulation? Isn't that also in the midst of 2,520 days?
Daniel 12:11 gives the duration of the last part (3.5 years) of the Tribulation, from the A.O.D. to the end of the 7 year Tribulation. "And from the time that the daily sacrifice shall be taken away, and the abomination that makes desolate setup, there shall be a thousand two hundred and ninety days" (Daniel 12:11). Have you ever wondered why Daniel 12:11 is for 1,290 days instead of 1,260 days? To get a better perspective on the number of days, consider the earlier words of Daniel:
"Then I Daniel looked, and behold, there stood two others (besides the angel messenger), the one on this side of the bank of the river, and the other on that side of the bank of the river. And one said to the man clothed in linen (Jesus), which was upon the waters of the river, How long shall it be to the end of these wonders? And I heard the man clothed in linen, which was upon the waters of the river when he held up his right hand and his left hand unto heaven, and swore by him that lives forever that it shall be for a time, times, and an half; and when he shall have accomplished to scatter the power of the holy people, and all these things shall be accomplished" (Daniel 12:5-7).
Later in Daniel 12:11, Jesus specifically informs Daniel of the exact amount of days that are in the term "time, times, and a half" (3.5 years)....exactly 1290 days. Therefore it is reasonable to assume that the first part of the prophecy is for 1230 days and the last part is for 1290 days. In other words, the Abomination of Desolation will occur in the midst of the 2520 days duration of the Tribulation, but not necessarily the exact middle.
There are two theories on the duration of the two parts of the Tribulation. Let us look at these as Theory 1 (1,260-1,260 days) and Theory 2 (1,230-1,290 days). Theory 1 starts 30 days before theory 2 does. Both theories have the same date for the in the midst event known as the Abomination of Desolation. Theory 1 ends 30 days earlier than Theory 2. Both theories agree that The Tribulation will last for 2,520 days.
Theory 1 is similar to Theory 2 in that they both believe that the Anti-Christ's total power over the Tribulation saints and the Jewish people will last for exactly 1,260 days or forty-two months (Revelation 13:5-7). Both theories believe that after the Abomination of Desolation, the remnant of Israel will flee into the wilderness of Jordan (Petra) where God will supernaturally protect them and sustain them for 1,260 days (Revelation 12:6).
Both theories agree that after the seals, trumpets, and vials judgments from God, Jesus Christ returns on a future Feast of Trumpets day at the battle of Armageddon. Daniel's 70th Seven ends there with theory 1 and does not really address Jesus fulfilling the 6th and 7th Feasts of the Lord. They occur after the Tribulation is officially over (7 years or 2520 days).
With Theory 2, the end of the Tribulation does not end with the battle of Armageddon, but rather 30 days later. This takes into account enough time for the Day of Atonement and the Feast of Tabernacles to be fulfilled by Jesus after his return to the Earth on Trumpets/Rosh Hashanah. The Feast of Tabernacles lasts for eight days until Tishri 23rd. Seven days later the Millennium Kingdom of Jesus Christ will commence.
According to Daniel 9:24, the end of the 7-year Tribulation will not occur until six things happen: 1) to finish the transgression, 2) to make an end of sin, 3) to make reconciliation for iniquity, 4) to bring in everlasting righteousness, 5) to seal up the vision and prophecy, 6) to anoint the most Holy.
With Theory 1, there is no time for all of this to happen if the Tribulation is over when Jesus returns at Armageddon. With Theory 2, there is sufficient time for the before-mentioned six results to occur. Also, there will still be enough time for Jesus to fulfill the prophecies of Matthew 24:30-31 as well as Matthew 25:31-46.
In establishing timelines for both of these theories, there is only one hypothesis that must be met... the date that Jesus returns to the earth must be on a future Feast of Trumpets/Rosh Hashanah day. Most Bible eschatologists agree the date on the Hebrew calendar for the return of Jesus Christ (2nd Coming) to the earth, at the Battle of Armageddon, will occur on Rosh Hashanah (Tishri 1 on the Jewish calendar) in some future year. Throughout the history of the Hebrew people, trumpets always were sounded when a Jewish king entered into the battle arena. It will not be different this time as well, only the trumpets will be of a heavenly origin announcing the King of kings and Lord of Lords, Jesus Christ.
The 5th Feast of the Lord, known as Trumpets, is the next one in line to be fulfilled by Jesus; as the first four (Passover, Unleavened Bread, Firstfruits, Pentecost) were fulfilled by him in 33 BC. Pentecost was fulfilled by Jesus sending the Holy Spirit to his followers 50 days after His resurrection on Sivan 7 of the same year, thus starting the Church Age.
No one knows the day or the hour of the Rapture, and no one ever will until it happens. However, by studying the scriptures, we can recognize the signs and biblical prophecies that precede it and know when it is getting close. We can be the watchman on the wall warning the people of immediate danger that is approaching, by blowing the trumpet (proclaiming God's word).
"Son of man, speak to the children of thy people, and say unto them, When I bring the sword upon a land, if the people of the land take a man of their coasts, and set him for their watchman: If when he sees the sword come upon the land, he blow the trumpet, and warn the people; Then whoever hears the sound of the trumpet, and takes not warning; if the sword come, and take him away, his blood shall be upon his own head" (Ezekiel 33:2-4).
The Rapture will precede the Tribulation. How much time elapses between these two God-ordained events is unknown. It could possibly be weeks, months, or even years. After the Rapture, the Anti-Christ will eventually come upon the scene to set up his wicked kingdom and will fulfill the prophecy of Daniel 9:27. He should be obvious to identify by two facts: 1) His name will numerically add up to the number 666 as per Revelation 13:18. 2) He will confirm the peace covenant with the many (ruling government of Israel) for a period of seven years.
In the midst of Jacob's Trouble, the Anti-Christ will perform his act of the "abomination of desolation" in the newly built 3rd Temple of the Lord in Jerusalem. He will also stop all the daily animal sacrifices that have been recently reinstated there. Many eschatologists suspect this will take place during the time of the Passover and Feast of Unleavened Bread when all male Jews of age are required to attend this historical and commemorative national event. 1260 days later, Jesus will return to the earth during the time of the 5th Feast of the Lord known as Trumpets, at the Battle of Armageddon.
If the Lord does return on a future Rosh Hashanah day, the time frame of the seven-years preceding it can now come into view. To begin the hypothetical dating process of the seven years of Jacob's Trouble you must travel in time to a future (a minimum of seven years from now) Feast of Trumpets day and work your way back to the past.
The earliest possible Feast of Trumpets date for the 2nd Coming of Jesus would be on Tishri 1, 5788 (October 1, 2027). 1260 days earlier, on Nisan 12, 5784 (April 19, 2024), the Abomination of Desolation occurs and the Anti-Christ acquires total control of world government. 1230 days earlier from the A.O.D., on Kislev 21, 5781 (December 6, 2020), the Tribulation period would officially start in this example. This date is only a little over a month from the 2020 presidential elections here in the United States.
If the Rapture happens sometime before the 2020 elections, I believe a Democrat will be elected into office as president of the United States. All the older conservatives (Republicans) will be raptured at a much higher rate than the liberal/progressive Democrats. This will leave the Democrats with a majority of voters. Most of the raptured believers will be older people and/or the very young (under the age of accountability). Those left behind will probably respond positively to the Anti-Christ's peace covenant with Israel that will occur soon after the Rapture.
Now let's go to a more likely timeline, as there will probably be more of a gap of time between the Rapture and the start of the Tribulation. A popular theory is that Jesus will return when the modern nation of Israel is 80 years old...in 2028. Of course, He will return on Rosh Hashanah. The date, in this case, would be on Tishri 1, 5789 on the Jewish calendar or September 20, 2028, on our modern Gregorian calendar. We must then count backward 1260 days (approximately 3.5 years or 42 months) to determine the in the midst point of the Tribulation, otherwise known as the Abomination of Desolation. This historic day would occur on Nisan 12, 5785 (April 9, 2025).
If you agree with theory 2 and believe that the beginning of the Tribulation takes place 1230 days earlier from the date of the Abomination of Desolation (instead of 1260 days), then the official starting date tales place on Kislev 24, 5782 on the Jewish calendar or November 27, 2021, on the Gregorian calendar. On the 25th day of the month of Kislev, the Jews celebrate the Feast of Hanukkah every year. Hanukkah commemorates the cleansing and rededication of the 2nd Temple of Jerusalem in 164 BC after the Jews won back control of Jerusalem from the occupying Syrian forces. On the day before the Feast of Hanukkah, the 24th day of Kislev, Israel has witnessed four major historical events regarding Jerusalem and/or the Holy Temple in Jerusalem:
1) The foundation of the 2nd Temple was laid in 520 BC (December 10, 520 BC).
2) The abolition of the Temple sacrifice by Antiochus in 167 BC (December 11, 167 BC).
3) The recapture of the Temple and the cleansing of the temple sanctuary in 164 BC. (December 8, 164 BC)
4) Jerusalem was freed from Turkish rule in 1917 (December 8, AD 1917).
What are the odds that the first day of the start of the Tribulation (when the Antichrist and the ruling government of Israel confirm a peace/trade covenant), might be on Kislev 24th of all days? Of course, odds don't really matter to God! This confirming of the covenant would allow the Jews to rebuild their holy temple in Jerusalem. Once the temple is built, the remainder of Daniel's prophecy can then become fulfilled.
As mentioned before, 1230 days later on Nisan 12, 5786 (April 9, 2025) the "in the midst" event, otherwise known as the Abomination of Desolation, will occur. The A.C. will do his dirty deed on or near the anniversary date of Nisan 10, (33 BC) when Jesus entered the city of Jerusalem on the back of a donkey as the true king of Israel. The Antichrist will emulate Jesus as being king of the Jews (and the entire world)...only he will try to claim his right to rule by force.
1260 days after the A.O.D., on Tishri 1, 5789 (September 20, 2028), Jesus will return to the earth at the Battle of Armageddon. This will ultimately fulfill the 5th Feast of the Lord known as Trumpets. The King of kings will have returned and the trumpets will be blowing for him. Jesus will have a greater victory even than the one He accomplished at Jericho approximately 3433 years earlier. After His great victory at Armageddon, He will fulfill the 6th and 7th Feasts of the Lord...Atonement and Tabernacles. Thus all seven Feasts of the Lord will have been accomplished and fulfilled by Jesus the son of God.
30 days after the last Feast of Trumpets, the Tribulation/Jacob's Trouble will have ended and the Millennium reign of Jesus Christ will begin. The date in this hypothetical example would be Heshvan 1, 5789 (October 20, 2028). 1290 days will have passed from the Abomination of Desolation (as mentioned in Daniel 12:11) to the end of the Great Tribulation and 2520 days will have passed from the start to the end of the seven-year Tribulation.
The 1000 year glorious reign of Jesus Christ as king of the earth will have begun. Hallelujah!
Amen. Even so, come Lord Jesus.
The Rapture Comes as a Thief in the Night - by Pastor Mike Taylor - https://pastormiketaylor.blogspot.com/2019/11/the-rapture-comes-as-thief-in-night.html
3 "Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts,
4 And saying, Where is the promise of his coming? for since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation." (2nd Peter 3:3-4)
2 "For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night.
3 For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape.
4 But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief." (1st Thessalonians 5:2-4)
You have heard so much about the "rapture" of the church, but have up to this point, discounted the subject as irrelevant, or not to be taken seriously. Now you are searching sites, just like this one that deals with bible prophecy, as before you thought it was something to be scoffed at, and now it has happened right before your very eyes. Fear grips your every nerve and your inner most being. You do a Google search on your computer, if the internet still works to find out what is going on. You turn on the TV to find frantic reports of the most horrifying news story that a person can ever imagine. The greatest event in all humanity has just happened, and you search for answers.
People you love, people you know, have suddenly without warning, vanished. Your wife or husband that pleaded with you to take this man and God in the flesh Jesus seriously, is no where to be found. Your children who attended grammar school or kindergarten are suddenly not in class. Their teachers are hysterical. Your baby is not in their crib. You hear the news, the panic in the reporter's voice that try to explain what is happening all around you. You see the disasters of planes crashing, trains derailing and the accidents of vehicles going out of control. You see reports of government officials, leaders of businesses and common men and women of everyday life suddenly gone. There is no rational explanation that can be found in this natural world. What has happened as your mind swirls with a thousand thoughts?
WAS THAT THE RAPTURE?
Then it slowly dawns on you and you begin to scream in your mind. Maybe you see an open bible that your spouse had been reading. Maybe you're inspecting personal items of loved ones that were theirs in this life. Have you just missed the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ in what they called "The Rapture"? What was it they kept telling you?
15:51 "Behold, I tell you a mystery: We all shall not sleep, but we shall all be changed,
15:52 in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.
15:53 For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality." (Ist Corinthians chapter 15.)
You run to grab that Bible you thought was a joke. That book that spoke of fantasies, fairy tales you thought that no one in their right mind would believe is now in your hands. You may have been switching channels trying to find someone speaking what the Holy Book in your hands proclaimed and there is nobody on. The screens are blank and the men and women who proclaimed the coming "rapture" of the church of God are not on the air. Then by chance, you find one channel who said they were "Christian", and they are just as scared as you are. They proclaim what you feared, what your mind is becoming to understand, as you both missed it. This preacher who spoke uplifting words of personal development and the "purpose driven life" is now just as scared as you are...... you are left behind in utter chaos.
You fall to your knees with deep sobs and bury your face in your hands, as you cry out in deep remorse for your foolishness not to believe what you had been told all your life. Jesus has come and you missed it in all your pride and refusal to come to the knowledge of Jesus as you personal Savior. Is all hope lost? Are you and the rest of remaining humanity doomed and forever separated from THE God who just fulfilled His promise to remove His people from this earth? As long as there is life in you, you still have a chance and a choice to make. Will you continue as you have or make a change? Will you start on the road that you were pleaded with to accept before this world wide event that just happened is finished? How long do I have? You have 7 years of pure hell to endure. What is that word you kept hearing before this event? The word was "saved"? What does that mean, being saved? What do I do now? I can only imagine your fear and the events I can only give sketchy details, as it must be more horrible than anyone can describe in words. What do you do?
It starts with knowing Who and what you should have believed in before this hour.
3:16 "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth on him should not perish, but have eternal life.
3:17 For God sent not the Son into the world to judge the world; but that the world should be saved through him.
3:18 He that believeth on him is not judged: he that believeth not hath been judged already, because he hath not believed on the name of the only begotten Son of God."(John 3:16-18)
Final judgment has not yet come. There is still time to take Him at His word. To believe in what you had refused to believe in before now. At this time, I would like to point you to more passages in your bible that I want you to read for yourself and the surrounding text. First, I ask you to read what I am suggesting in all love and desire for you to join us in this unspeakable joy, but unfortunately you will have to wait until Jesus comes back in His glorious appearing to set up His Kingdom. What I ask you to do is start by reading the Gospel of John in that bible in your hands. Find out who this man Jesus was and is today. It will explain in detail of why He came and what He accomplished. It will show you what He wants to accomplish in your life, as well. Then turn to the following passages and read the surrounding context.
Acts 2:38 "And Peter `said' unto them, Repent ye, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ unto the remission of your sins; and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit."
You must believe that Jesus Christ was the Son of God. You must repent of your sins and ask forgiveness of those sins and request mercy from God to impart God's Holy Spirit into your life and heart. Then start living like it everyday you have left. At the present, you are outside of the grace of God and His mercy, but God may be using this event to shake you to your uttermost being, your very core. The Holy Spirit of God stills wants you to give Him entrance into your life. He is knocking. Will you open that door?
"Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.
21 To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne." Revelation 20-21)
"For if, while we were enemies, we were reconciled to God through the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, shall we be saved by his life;
5:11 and not only so, but we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received the atonement (reconciliation).(Romans 5:10-11)
John 14:6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me."
THERE IS ONLY ONE WAY!!
There is no other way, no pathway through any religion, no feel good gospel can lead you to eternal life. Other men might have led you to believe that all religions lead to God, like a spoke on a wheel, they all lead to the axle which is God. That was the lie they wanted you to believe, what Satan wanted you to believe. You cry out, "I was a good person. Why was I not given that much credit?" Yes, you may be an upstanding citizen. You went to church on Sunday with your spouse and kids. You sat there with every thought but what was being preached, just to get through so you could go play golf, or go fishing, or any other activity apart from following what God was trying to draw you to. But what was it you were told? What was God trying to convince you of?
3:23 "For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;
3:24 Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:
3:25 Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;
3:26 To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus."(Romans 3:23-26)
No manner of good works, although honorable in itself, can remove the penalty of sin from any man or woman. God is holy and to stand before Him, we must be found holy. We must be clothed with the righteousness of His Son, who died for us. God the Father will see nothing but Jesus in us, and everything else will be forgotten and separated from us, as the east is from the west, so shall our sins be. You cannot be good enough, generous enough, or righteous in your own power to stand before Almighty God and be counted forgiven of being a person wallowing in sin.
10:8 "But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach;
10:9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
10:10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
10:11 For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed."
12 For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him.
13 For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved."
It is not good enough to understand the words, but a person must internalize them. They must believe them in their heart and mind that these words are truth and were made for the salvation of mankind, including you. You must take that step of faith, even in this terrible hour to understand, to believe that Jesus died for your sins and wishes you to spend eternity with Him and the Father in heaven and on a coming new earth. You must believe in your heart of hearts that God raised Him from the dead and seated Him in glory at His right hand.
James 2:19,"Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble."
He has now come, as He promised and you are left to face what will come upon the earth. What is coming? This is wrath, my friend and judgment from a righteous and Holy God. But what is this wrath and what can you do now?
"And said to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the face of him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb:
6:17 For the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand?"(Revelation 6:16-17)
This wrath is the judgment of God upon a rebellious and unholy human race that professes all unrighteousness and have turned their back on their Creator and have turned to the worship of the creation. I would describe it as it was in the days of Noah. We all were giving in marriage, eating and drinking and life was status quo, until as in the days of Noah, the flood came and swept them all away. So it has happened now. God in His wrath will sweep away all rebellion. Two thirds to three quarters of mankind will be extinguished, the earth will be scorched, the waters will be turned unusable for consumption, and a madman will be hunting down anybody who professing any allegiance to God. That is why we have believed , on this site, the pre-tribulation return of Jesus, the One you just experienced that left the world in total chaos and upheaval. Jesus will return in approximately 7 years, but it won't be the world in status quo or the same as it was before Jesus came the first time. Before Jesus will come to set up His Kingdom, that world will be near total destruction and human annihilation. Unless Jesus shortens this time, no flesh will be saved, but for the elect, He will shorten it. (Matthew 24:22)
RISE OF THE ANTI-CHRIST
I give you a word of dire warning, my friend. There is coming a man, that you will see arise. . He will use words that will attempt to calm the storm all around you. He will give false promises and reasons for this calamity. He will try and convince you that all is well and try and explain away the disappearance of millions of people. I can only hear him in my mind saying "Alien abduction" or "being destroyed because they stand in the way of the evolution of mankind." He will resort to that kind of deceiving lies. Be not deceived. The Bible describes him. He is the Anti-Christ who will be a powerful dictator of the whole world for a very short period of time.
"And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming:
2:9 Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders,
2:10 And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.
2:11 And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie:
2:12 That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness."(II Thessalonians 2:8-12)
Believe him not. He will try and say words that will try and calm you, to deceive you, but the Word of God says that he is filled with the spirit of Satan.
"Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;
2:4 Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God."( II Thessalonians 2:3-4)
He will try and convince you that your continued way of life is for the good of the planet. He will speak soft words and lure you to follow his master plan of a "greener earth", to banish global warming and promote salvation of humanity through human endeavor. He will make himself out to be a god in the flesh and demand a mark of loyalty. A further word of warning:
"And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand,
14:10 The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb:
14:11 And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name."( Revelation 14:9-11)
All who take this mark will do it with full knowledge of their actions. They may believe the lie, but will take a mark of loyalty and proclaim this man, as a god, to their eternal destruction. They may think of him as "the anointed one" a false messiah. Be not deceived, I plead with you. Therefore:
"Be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me his prisoner: but be thou partaker of the afflictions of the gospel according to the power of God;
1:9 Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began,
1:10 But is now made manifest by the appearing of our Saviour Jesus Christ, who hath abolished death, and hath brought life and immortality to light through the gospel:
Be not ashamed of Him any longer. Now is the day of salvation:"(II Timothy 1:8-10)
II Corinthians 6:2, "For he saith, I have heard thee in a time accepted, and in the day of salvation have I succoured thee: behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation." (2nd Corinthians 6:2)And again:
Luke 19:10 "For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which had become lost."
You have come to a cross roads in your life and your spiritual condition. You can continue in this, your way of life. You can believe the lies that this charismatic man called the Anti-Christ has with his silky words of deception, or you can listen to the still, small voice that calls you to repentance and to follow Him, Jesus Christ. It won't be easy to do the latter, but to follow the former will damn you to a devil's hell burning with fire and brimstone.
"For we ourselves also were sometimes foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving divers lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful, and hating one another.
3:4 But after that the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared,
3:5 Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;
3:6 Which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour;
3:7 That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life."(Titus 3:3-7)
If you are reading this and the horrible events that I briefly describe have not transpired as of yet, then there is still time to make that decision for Jesus Christ. It's a matter of your eternal destination and to soberly meditate on. Do it now while there is still time. Take each of these passages and devour the words preceding and following each quoted scriptures. Drink them in and let them fill you mind and your heart. Then take action by doing a simple sinner's prayer:
Lord Jesus, I ask you to come into my heart. I am a sinner and confess my sins to you. Cleanse me from all unrighteousness and give me the strength and faith to follow you to the very end. I believe you died and rose again, as you have come and I want to be with you, when you come again to set up your Kingdom. Allow me in your mercy and grace to be added to your Book of Life. I live to follow you, as My Lord and Savior. I ask these in the Name of the only begotten Son of God, Jesus the Christ. Amen.
Note that you do not have to say these words verbatim, but you MUST believe them in your heart. To do otherwise, will throw you into what is coming.....Rapture when you least expect it and the coming Tribulation.
This is pastor Mike Taylor praying that you hear that still small voice calling. It is the Holy Spirit. I pray that you will heed His call, and this warning. If you need help with anything, prayer, counseling, or just a listening ear, then email me at firstname.lastname@example.org , browse for more messages of the coming of our Lord and the only Way to salvation through Christ Jesus . God bless you all...TILL WE MEET AT JESUS FEET
The End Times Unraveled - Jerry McDermott -
I have often wondered about the various aspects of the Final Days and have thought other Christians might have the same query. Certainly, we have been asked, "Watta ya mean, The End Times?" Perhaps other terms might be more appropriate such as: The Last Days; The Last Generation; The End of the Age; Final Days; Jacob's trouble; Daniel's 70th Week; The End of Days; Armageddon; The Great Tribulation; Pre-Trib Rapture; The Second Coming; or Millennialism. All of these terms involve the science of Eschatology which is a study of the End Times, our topic today.
The Kingdom in the End Times
The biblical forecasts of the End Times being revealed almost every day should be reflected in growing fervor among believers in Christ. Traditionally, such events are strong at first, but fade soon afterward. An example is 911 fervor which soon faded after the first increase in church attendance. The happening is apostasy or the falling away. To avoid confusion, the falling away pertains to those who were never true believers.
"They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us; but they went out that they might be made manifest, that none of them were of us" (1 John 2:19).
By contrast, the true believer experiences a lifetime of spiritual growth in their relationship with Jesus.
This nefarious army of devils and demons probably began when Satan and numerous angels were thrown out of heaven. The story is the classic result of pride over reason or good sense as Satan wanted to at least be equal to God. He is described as having everything someone created could have, yet he wanted more. His first scriptural reference is in the Garden of Eden where he is revealed as the master of deception.
While Satan is still practicing his major role in the End Times, Jesus has warned us about his threat: "Take heed that no one deceives you" (Matthew 24:14). This modern deception is the introduction of semi-"Christian" cults and watered-down preaching/teaching in traditional churches, as well as fostering the apostasy, and especially Replacement Theology. In addition, he is blatantly and obviously pushing occult practices as well as the wiccan and pagan temples and ceremonies. The most obvious is the rise of Satanic churches and "Christian" witches, obviously oxymorons. Our Lord summarized this evil empire so well in a prophecy given to me November 10, 2013: "Seek me and my kingdom as another kingdom is being raised to gather you in. Seek only me."
After Christ's second coming and the start of the millennium era, Satan will be imprisoned only to be released 1,000 years later. He will then form a huge army which is divinely defeated by heavenly fire. He will then be deposed forever, joining the Beast and the False Prophet already in the fire pits of Hell after the tribulation. The following are the various areas of "down there":
HELL is the common name for the place for those who are eternally lost.
GHENNA (aka Gehenna) is the permanent dwelling for lost souls and the scriptural name of Hell.
Hades is the temporary holding place where all pre-Resurrection humans were placed after death. It has two sections: one for evildoers (Tartarus) and one for the righteous (Sheol). The comfortable one was known as Abraham's bosom and was visited by Jesus after His death when He brought the righteous to heaven, so it remains empty.
By contrast, the wicked will remain in Hades until their judgment and condemnation to areas of Ghenna. This is an area of constant torment that most people call Hell. It is totally devoid of anything Godlike, especially heavenly goodness. It is also called the second death where eternal separation from God occurs. It is the term for the eternal loneliness by separation from God.
Early Birth Pangs
Jesus proclaimed, "If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand" (Mark 3:24). You do not have to look further for an example other than the two American political parties and the recalcitrant Republicans among the Senate and House. The divisional aspect is almost universal and pervades politics as well as American History, anti-Semitism, atheism, and the profound lies against our Constitution and our Judean/Christian founding. This negativity is something we have to live with each day, a pre-Rapture tribulation for believers.
Jesus predicted these things would happen which was related in Matthew Chapter 24. Yes, they had to happen as they are the preliminaries to the Rapture and continue after the Rapture. In addition, Paul gave Timothy a prophetic warning of the end-time culture which is being fulfilled every day in our era (2 Timothy 3:1-5).
At the Last Supper, the apostles had mixed feelings. While they were gathered together to celebrate the feast of Passover, there was sadness. This was due to the recent knowledge that Jesus was due for death by the Roman cross. While Jesus tried to calm their dilemma by revealing that He would return for them to join Him in heaven, they did not understand.
Are we in the same situation of disbelief that we are heavenly bound? Yes, some people are not confident that they have a heavenly future. Others pick apart the Rapture, claiming it is a myth, or scoffing at the probability. The third predicament is the forsaking of the word itself or its translation, thus abandoning this revealed truth altogether.
To eliminate confusion between two major events: in the Rapture we go up (heaven bound); in the Second Coming, we come down after seven years in heaven (earth bound). Jesus has rescued us from the second death by His passion and resurrection. In a like manner, the Rapture rescues us from many potential deaths in the seven-year Tribulation. In neither case do we experience the wrath of God which happens throughout the Tribulation.
While Jesus talked about rescuing His people, it was revealed to Paul by Christ himself that He would summon the living and dead believers to join Him in the clouds. Once gathered there, we would always be with the Lord. Notice the word "always." It does not mean forever in heaven because seven years later at the end of the Tribulation, we will come back to earth with Jesus for the Millennium reign.
The Marriage of the Lamb
This heavenly event takes place in heaven before the Second Coming of the Lord. Paul speaks of the church as the Bride of Christ where Jesus is the bridegroom (Ephesians 5:23-24). The terminology is likened to a Jewish wedding, culminating with the indissoluble unity between the Bride and the Bridegroom.
Marriage Feast of the Lamb
This is the celebration of the marriage of the Lamb and His church. It takes place on earth after the Second Coming. An angel told John to write: "Blessed are those who are called to the marriage supper of the Lamb" (Revelation 19:9).
How can you describe it, for heaven IS truly the HEAVEN! Our Lord knows we are curious, so He described it in Revelation 4:21 and 22:1-6. There is no light in heaven, for the glory of the Lord illuminates it. Perhaps you will see the green rainbow reflecting on the crystalline golden roads (Revelation 4:3). We will sing and adore our Lord with the choir of angels, interact with others, and learn from Jesus.
As far as what gifts we will exhibit with our heavenly bodies, scripture already gives us a clue. Jesus was transported from Jerusalem. "Then Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit to Galilee" (Luke 4:14). In the story of Phillip and the eunuch, Phillip was caught away by the Spirit of the Lord to Azotus (Acts 8:39-40). Hopefully, we will be able to use the gift of the Spirit to move about as Jesus did. He also moved through doors or walls (John 20:19).
In Heaven, we will know our family and friends, but what about knowing Moses, Abraham, or the prophets and apostles? Regardless, how will we recognize anybody in this vast number of saints? I do not think we will wear a name tag for eternity. Again, we can turn to scripture. How did Peter, James, and John recognize Moses and Elijah at the Transfiguration of Jesus? There weren't any drawings, paintings, or mosaics of them. The answer could be mental telepathy or a Word of Knowledge as the Old Testament heroes were introduced. Will we learn a new language, perhaps Hebrew? Or will we retain our earthly language and other people understand us by the Holy Spirit's gift of understanding. I also believe we will interact with angels, but how will we learn to cavort with them?
New Testament Judgments
The Historic Judgment
From the beginning, upon death, people were sent to either of Hades' two locations. Believers were sent to a comfort zone, and unbelievers or sinners to a pre-hell existence. The saved area was emptied when Jesus took them to the third heaven called Paradise at His ascension just as Jesus told the good thief, "Today you will be with me in paradise" (Luke 23:43). Since the Ascension of Jesus, the souls of believers that have passed go directly to Paradise. The non-believers who died throughout history will be removed from Hades to appear at the Great White Throne Judgment after the Millennium period before being sentenced to the lake of fire.
The Judgment Seat of Christ (Bema Seat)
This event takes place in heaven after the Rapture. Rather than a judgment by trial, Jesus reviews the depth of our earthly Christian life. The purpose is an awards ceremony with distinct rewards including five crowns given for exemplary Kingdom endeavors. This is also known as the BEMA Judgment, the word originating from the Greek word for the winner's platform. Note that the rewards are only given to believers, as un-believers are not present (Psalm 62:12). The Bema Judgment is often called the Doctrine of Rewards. However, it is not about sin as all the people assembled have accepted salvation by the Lord's activities. Some are given rewards; others will be aware of what they could have done in their earthly existence. Regardless, all will receive heavenly eternal life with Jesus.
At the end of the Tribulation, Jesus and the armies of heaven are mounted on white horses to battle the army of the Anti-Christ (Revelation 19:11-14). Both the anti-Christ and the False Prophet will be captured and thrown into the lake of fire. Their army will be slain by Jesus as the Word of God (Revelation 119:20-21).
The Goat & Sheep judgment
This judgment takes place after the Great Tribulation. Jesus uses animal references as He judges the goats (those condemned) versus the sheep (those saved). The souls of the people who were martyred in the Tribulation due to their belief in Christ will go directly to be with Jesus. Their bodies will be resurrected when Christ returns to earth at the end of the Tribulation.
The Judgment takes place in Jerusalem where Jesus sits on His throne in the temple. The sheep at the right hand are saved, and the goats at the left hand are sent to everlasting punishment (Matthew 25:31-46). The ones saved will join the Millennium with normal human bodies while the Raptured people will have heavenly bodies. It should be interesting.
The White Throne Judgment
This heavenly convocation is a required gathering for unbelievers who have refused the life that the Son of God offered for redemption. In fact, Jesus proclaimed the differences: "He who overcomes shall inherit all things and I will be his God, and he shall be my son" (Revelation 21:7). He also declared that the cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the fiery lake which is the second death (Revelation 21:8).
The dead non-believers will be resurrected to appear before Christ who will judge them. In addition, any unbelievers alive at this time will be part of the throng and also be judged. The absence of your name in the Book of Life means a condemnation and being thrown into the lake of fire. There will be degrees of punishment. The judgment for each is qualitative depending on the depth of unforgiven sinfulness. You can avoid eternal damnation by repenting of any sins; believing in Jesus Christ; and inviting Him to be Lord of your life before your passing. As a Born-Again Christian with infilling of the Holy Spirit, you will be led to further repentance, a change of mind and actions.
The Great Tribulation
Just by itself, the word tribulation is enough to cause concern. The dictionary describes it as grievous trouble, severe trial or suffering. While all of these meanings are part of the subject, they still do not represent the horror that is coming. Perhaps the prophecy of Jesus will convey the terrifying meaning: "For then, there will be great tribulation such as not been since the beginning of the whole world until this time, no, nor ever shall be. And unless those days were shortened, no flesh would be saved, but for the elect's sake, those days will be shortened" (Matthew 24:21-22 and Daniel 12:1-3).
Revelation begins with Jesus evaluating the seven churches. His remarks of the Laodicean church are prophetic as He says they are neither hot nor cold, which fully describes the churches of our era as well. In this book formerly called The Apocalypse, next relates John being brought to heaven as Jesus says, "Come up here and I will show you what must take place in time to come" (Revelation 4:1b). John then relates the events of the seven-year Tribulation including the Great Tribulation which starts after 3-1/2 years.
These seven years take place after the Rapture but the scriptures are silent about the exact timing of the Rapture. Therefore, we do not know whether it is days, months, or years from now. Regardless, some individuals have attempted to come forth with dates that are obviously spurious since it has not happened.
The Tribulation or suffering of this era is initiated when the Anti-Christ makes a peace treaty with Israel, only to be broken after 3-1/2 years. The book of Revelation gives a complete rendering of this era with the seals, trumpets, bowls, and incredible characters. The full seven years includes the wrath of God for not accepting His Son. During the Tribulation there are 144 Jewish missionaries formed as twelve from each tribe to preach that Jesus is the Messiah. They are protected from any harm by the Lord.
Joining the 144,000 in the first part of the Tribulation are two heavenly prophetic witnesses with awesome power. These two witnesses will be killed by the anti-Christ at the midpoint of the Tribulation, and their corpses will be viewed by the world for 3-1/2 days. They are then resurrected and ascend to heaven. The last 3 ½ years is the Great Tribulation, when events are amplified. The anti-Christ will proclaim himself to be God and cause all to take his mark of worship or be killed.
The major war in this era is Armageddon where the forces of evil come against Israel and God. Jesus returns with us and defeats this vast army from every nation.
The Second Coming
This is the big M, the Millennium or one-thousand-year reign of Jesus in Jerusalem as King of kings and Lord of lords. He rules over all nations in the new millennial temple after defeating the evil warriors. The anti-Christ is not Satan but is used by him for the evil empire of the anti-Christ and the False Prophet, both of whom are sent to hell after their defeat at Armageddon. The thousand years are exemplary for all the good things promised Raptured believers for eternity. In addition, those believers who survived the seven-year Tribulation will live in the Millennium.
Commentary on the Millennium
Since the Millennium is in the future, is it important to us today? Yes, our position in the judgments is contingent on our conduct in our era, the present time. Paul confirms this in a letter to Timothy that if we died with Jesus, we would live with Him; and if we endured, we would reign with Him. Likewise, if we dismissed Him, He will dismiss us (2 Timothy 2:10-13).
The Last War
With the termination of the Millennium, Satan will be freed and deceptively influences a vast number of people to join him in a war against God. The vast army is destroyed by fire, and they and Satan are sent to hell for eternity.
Revelation describes everlasting life as everything new and closeness with God. John relates that he saw a new heaven and a new earth, as the first had passed away along with the seas (Revelation 21:1). He also described the New Jerusalem coming down from Heaven. He exclaimed, "Behold the tabernacle of God with men. God Himself will be with them and be their God (Revelation 21:3). For eternity we will enjoy peace and freedom, basking within the glory of God and actually having companionship with our Lord.
This has been a brief summary of the timing within the End Times. "But as it is written, eye has not seen, or ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man the things God has prepared for them that love Him" (1 Corinthians 2:9). However, Jesus did tell us that "In my Father's house there are many mansions" (also translated as rooms or dwellings). Interesting that house is singular whereas mansions is plural. Is Jesus describing the enormous New Jerusalem building? Is the building so vast as being necessary as there are that many saints in heaven? Or is our humble abode indeed mansion-size?
The Soon Return of Christ - By Pete Garcia -
"And behold, I am coming quickly, and My reward is with Me, to give to every one according to his work. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End, the First and the Last." Revelation 22:12-13
The skeptic and scoffer will laugh and point to this verse, and mockingly ask, where is the promise of His return? It's been 2,000 years and He still hasn't come back. They have been mocking now for 2,000 years. Every generation has had their fill of these boastful ingrates, beating their chests and proudly blaspheming the name of Christ. Our day is only different in that it is getting worse.
First, is that every generation over these past 2,000 years has had their share of skeptics and scoffers. Every single one of those mockers prior to our generation, have since died. In death, they now know the truth as they await their judgment. You see, death is not the end for us as we will spend the rest of eternity in either one of two places. Our physical body will grow old, and our heart will one day stop beating, but our conscious never dies. And at the point of death, we will slip out of this physical, fleshly, body and immediately go into the next. What we believed in this life, will ultimately determine, where we spend the rest of eternity.
But death is not the end.
In fact, as one pastor eloquently puts it, for the unregenerate (the unsaved), their conscious becomes amplified in death. Every habit they craved in life, whether benign or evil, is amplified in hades. If you were addicted to drugs or pornography in this life, your conscious, immortal body, will have that addiction amplified without ever being fulfilled for the rest of eternity. For example, if you lived by the satanic law of do what thou will (fulfilling the lust of the flesh), you will suffer never, ever, being able to fulfill those lusts for the rest of eternity.
Every thought is amplified (for all to hear). Every impulse, addiction, craving, and every regret, is amplified so profoundly, that aside from the oppressive heat, darkness, and the pain, the person in hades/Sheol/torments, will spend every second for the rest of eternity with that profound gnawing of withdrawal eating away at them. They will never again satisfy whatever it was that got their rocks off in their former life. (See Luke 16:19-31)
Thus, those who are still alive today, have only their fellow mockers to keep them company. They mock in blind ignorance today, hating God (Romans 1), and are singularly comforted by their present company of mockers. But the moment they die, they are forever separated and alone for the rest of eternity.
The second point is that according to Scripture, God created time for mankind. He has not bound to it Himself. For Him, a day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years, as a day (2 Peter 3:8). In other words, our concept of time and His are very different. We in our present state, are in our mortal, physical, beings. We are generally limited to 70-80 years (Psalm 90:10), and then we die, and then our real selves, the soul of man, goes to either one of two locations: either with God in the heavenly, divine, realms, or apart from God, in hades/Sheol/torments. When, at the end of human history, and after the Great White Throne Judgment, God will cast those who are in hades/Sheol/torments into the Lake of Fire. This is their true and final home for the rest of eternity.
Then I saw a great white throne and Him who sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away. And there was found no place for them. And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God, and books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, by the things which were written in the books. The sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them. And they were judged, each one according to his works. Then Death and Hades were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire. Revelation 20:10-14
All things considered, 2,000 years is not really that long a time to wait. Each person has whatever time in their life to make their amends with their Creator, and then, death. As the writer of Hebrews put it, and as it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment, so Christ was offered once to bear the sins of many. To those who eagerly wait for Him He will appear a second time, apart from sin, for salvation (Heb. 9:27-28). Yes, it has been 2,000 years since Christ last walked the earth, but each generation has had to come to grips with who Jesus was to them, and have long since marched into the grave.
Ultimately, the born-again believer (spiritually regenerated) would like to have the single, most important question of our life answered. When is Christ returning? To this, I say what Christ said....soon. We are told we cannot know the day nor hour, but we are also told that we could see the day approaching and that we would not be in the dark regarding His return.
"But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, but My Father only. But as the days of Noah were, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be. Matthew 24:36-37
And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching. Hebrews 10:24-25
Remember therefore how you have received and heard; hold fast and repent. Therefore if you will not watch, I will come upon you as a thief, and you will not know what hour I will come upon you. Revelation 3:3
But concerning the times and the seasons, brethren, you have no need that I should write to you. For you yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so comes as a thief in the night. For when they say, "Peace and safety!" then sudden destruction comes upon them, as labor pains upon a pregnant woman. And they shall not escape. But you, brethren, are not in darkness, so that this Day should overtake you as a thief. 1 Thessalonians 1-4
As I put in a previous article, we can both know and not know, by the shadow looming over us. Although we don't know when specifically Christ will return, we know we are now standing in the shadow of the 70th Week of Daniel. It looms large over us, and the watching believer is joined by the Holy Spirit, with other believers, who sense the nearness of Christ return. In other words, for the believer who is watching and eagerly anticipating the soon return of Christ, we are being reaffirmed by the Holy Spirit who indwells us that His coming is very soon.
So how soon is that?
If I had to wager a guess, I'd say between now and ten years from now.
I'm sure there were people in the 1970s, 1980s, 1990s, etc. who probably felt the same way. They, in their humanity, could not fathom Christ's return extending beyond their immediate future. We here in the year 2019, soon to be 2020, feel the same way. We cannot fathom Christ's return going beyond our immediate future.
I like to think of it as a window of time.
Those speculating that Christ would return in the 1970s were too early. Those who think Christ's return will be no earlier than the year 2050, are too late. We here in the middle of those two boundaries must keep in mind that although God's specific timing is unknown to us, they are not random or arbitrary. His return will be tied to something significant, whether we recognize that or not, is irrelevant. So what makes me think we are in the middle of that 80-year window? (1970-2050)
The nation of Israel.
If for nothing else, the Christian today, has Israel as God's timepiece. I've chronicled before in much more depth about Israel's timeline (here), but keep this simple principle in mind.
Simply looking at Israel as God's timepiece then, we are in the last seconds, of the last days, which is why I don't think we can really push the envelope of God's patience beyond 10-years. Even escalating this timeline, was the election of the most pro-Israel president the US has ever had since Harry Truman. President Trump, as the leader of the most powerful nation on earth, became the first president to officially recognize Jerusalem as Israel's eternal capital. Not only that but by moving our national embassy there, he cemented this decision into policy.
The world, which is currently being run by Satan himself, does not like this. (1 John 5:19). This is why President Trump has the entirety of the globalist, bureaucratic, satanic architecture coming down on his head. They are being steered with this blind, irrational hatred of him, and they do not even understand why. The reason why is that Satan hates Israel, and he will try everything in his power, to destroy them as a nation and as a people. If he can destroy Israel, then he can break/thwart God's prophetic promise to them, thus, potentially, nullifying his own fate of spending the rest of eternity in the lake of fire.
So how much longer will all this go on?
We know, according to Scripture, that Satan will make four attempts at wiping out the Jewish nation and the city of Jerusalem.
Psalm 83: has not happened yet historically, but could happen at any moment. We've seen numerous attempts (1948, 1967, 1973, etc.) already, but there is coming one which will significantly expand Israel's border for good. This time, they will not yield the land back. Sunni Islam as a religion will suffer a significant, devastating blow.
Ezekiel 38-39: has not happened yet, but we see the chess pieces (the nations) already in position. Nations who historically have always been at odds with each other, are gathering for the first time in what used to be Syria. The nations of Iran, Russia, and Turkey (the three major nations) are staging in Syria under the pretense of keeping the peace. This will change and God will put a hook in their mouths and lead them to war, where He will destroy them. This will put the final nail in the coffin of Islam, as both the Turks (Sunni) and the Iranians (Shia) are overwhelmingly defeated.
Revelation 19: will not happen until the end of Daniel's 70th Week. At the end of the seven-years (70th Week), the antichrist and the false prophet will lead a final charge against the city of Jerusalem and the Jewish remnant. Christ returns visibly, as He peels the sky apart, and destroys ALL the armies of the world gathered there. See also Zechariah 14:1-15
Revelation 20:1-9: will not happen until the end of Christ's thousand-year reign on the earth. Here, Satan is released from the bottomless pit for a "short season" and is allowed to persuade those who were born in the millennium, to rise up against Christ who is ruling the world from Jerusalem. Needless to say, this is a short battle, as Christ calls down fire from heaven and consumes them for the last time.
As J.D. Farag once put it, these prophecies have a shelf-life. Psalm 83, Isaiah 17 (destruction of Damascus), and Ezekiel 38-39 are already primed and ready to go. I don't see how much longer these things can stay in their present state without falling apart geopolitically. As much as I believed God used a Trump-presidency to accomplish His purposes (just as He used the Truman presidency), the world-situation is exactly where He said they would be. The world hates Israel and has been coming against it since 1948. The world hates the Trump Administration because Trump enthusiastically supports Israel.
I can understand some people's sentiments regarding how they used to believe Christ would return in the 1970s, 1980s, 1990s, etc. and have felt burned by believing that. HOWEVER, they were not where we are today, regarding ALL that has happened since Hal Lindsey's Late Great Planet Earth first got published (1970). His book, like the Left Behind series, were runaway bestsellers. They were used for their time to point to the soon return of Christ.
Understandably, soon, can be a relatively subjective term. When I tell my children that Christmas is six-weeks away that seems like a lifetime to them. However, as parents, we recognize how soon six-weeks really is, and we begin to scramble to buy the presents and get the travel arrangements in order, and so forth. Although God isn't "scrambling" per se, He is methodically allowing for events to unfold that will prepare for the return of His Son, Jesus Christ, to take His rightful place on the throne of David.
To David, from Nathan the Prophet;
Moreover I will appoint a place for My people Israel, and will plant them, that they may dwell in a place of their own and move no more; nor shall the sons of wickedness oppress them anymore, as previously, since the time that I commanded judges to be over My people Israel, and have caused you to rest from all your enemies. Also the Lord tells you that He will make you a house.
"When your days are fulfilled and you rest with your fathers, I will set up your seed after you, who will come from your body, and I will establish his kingdom. He shall build a house for My name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever. I will be his Father, and he shall be My son. If he commits iniquity, I will chasten him with the rod of men and with the blows of the sons of men. But My mercy shall not depart from him, as I took it from Saul, whom I removed from before you. And your house and your kingdom shall be established forever before you. Your throne shall be established forever." ' "According to all these words and according to all this vision, so Nathan spoke to David. 2 Samuel 7:10-17
So where is the throne of David?
It is in Jerusalem.
Which is in the land of Israel.
Which is why we say Israel is God's time-piece.
Then the angel said to her, "Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bring forth a Son, and shall call His name Jesus. He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Highest; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David. And He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of His kingdom there will be no end." Luke 1:30-33
The current reality of a national-Israel being full of Jews, who are back in their ancestral homeland, makes us the first generation in 2,000 years to meet these prophetic conditions. Although we are overflowing with prophetic signs and markers these days, we often lose sight of just how prophetically significant Israel really is. I say lose sight because we start looking at a lot of different signs trying to determine just how close we actually are. Then we become inundated with information and begin to chase our tails.
It has to come back to watching Israel. This is because if you were born after 1948, you've only ever known Israel to be back in her land. However, if you lived before 1948, you understood that the nation of Israel existed only in history books. I've often wondered if this is why so many of our great Christian prophecy scholars have already graduated into glory, leaving us young bucks to carry the water. We get enamored with all the technology, signs in the heavens, geopolitics and so on, thus, we know we are near the end, but we forget to do our proper cross-scan (across the dashboard of all the prophetic signs).
The Bible emphatically states that Christ will one day rule from David's throne, which is in Jerusalem. The Bible emphatically states that Israel will build a third temple. The two previous temples were destroyed; the first by the Babylonians, and the second by the Romans. However, in order for there to be a third temple, Israel had to control Jerusalem. In order the Jews to control Jerusalem, they had to control the land of Israel. In order for the Jews to reclaim the nation of Israel, God would have had to preserve them as a people through 2,000 years of Diaspora.
"Now it shall come to pass, when all these things come upon you, the blessing and the curse which I have set before you, and you call them to mind among all the nations where the Lord your God drives you, and you return to the Lord your God and obey His voice, according to all that I command you today, you and your children, with all your heart and with all your soul, that the Lord your God will bring you back from captivity, and have compassion on you, and gather you again from all the nations where the Lord your God has scattered you. If any of you are driven out to the farthest parts under heaven, from there the Lord your God will gather you, and from there He will bring you. Then the Lord your God will bring you to the land which your fathers possessed, and you shall possess it. He will prosper you and multiply you more than your fathers. And the Lord your God will circumcise your heart and the heart of your descendants, to love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul, that you may live. Deuteronomy 30:1-6
Are you ready?
The Last Days and the Left's Lies, Part 3 - By Sean Gooding - https://www.raptureready.com/2019/11/06/last-days-lefts-lies-part-3-sean-gooding/
Proverbs 29:18 "Where there is no revelation, the people cast off restraint; But happy is he who keeps the law."
Once again thanks for the emails that you send. Some are encouraging and others not so, and that is okay. The mere fact the people are reading these articles is enough for me. Plus, those that are not encouraging force me to be more deliberate in my study and in my defense of what is true. George Orwell said this, "In a time of deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act." Jesus put it this way in John 3:19-20:
"And this is the verdict: The Light has come into the world, but men loved the darkness rather than the Light, because their deeds were evil. Everyone who does evil hates the Light, and does not come into the Light for fear that his deeds will be exposed."
As we approach the Last Days, the prevalence of lies will grow and grow as the world system prepares the masses for the Anti-Christ to appear. Remember that there will be strong deception once the Lord's churches are taken out of the way, and then God will send strong delusions that the people should believe THE LIE. In 2 Thessalonians 2:10-12 we see this dire warning:
"10 and with every wicked deception directed against those who are perishing, because they refused the love of the truth that would have saved them. 11 For this reason, God will send them a powerful delusion so that they will believe the lie, 12 in order that judgment will come upon all who have disbelieved the truth and delighted in wickedness."
Notice in verse 10 that these who refused to love truth have every wicked deception directed against them. They reject the very truth that will save them; and, ultimately, they will be allowed to believe all the lies of the world system and then, in particular, THE LIE (see verse 11), whatever that lie will be about the missing billions of people that have been suddenly taken out of this world by God. This is why it is so important that the Bible tells us in Hebrews 10:25 that we need to assemble together more and more as we see the last days approaching. While we are together, we are to encourage each other; and, more importantly, we are to spend time in the truth of the Bible. Without it and its truths, we too could fall prey to the lies of the system around us.
Let me offer one lie that is coming to a head as an example, and then we will move on to the actual lesson. The world keeps telling us that men and women are the same. So, when men who identify as women want to compete in women's sports, they completely dominate. Right now, trans-men are dominating women's athletics, cycling, wrestling, weightlifting, and on we can go. It is clear to the real women that the men are stronger, faster and have more endurance. Let me offer an example, according to Google:
The fastest women's mile runner is Sifan Hassan who recently set the world record with a time of 4 mins 12 seconds; however, the fastest man is Hicham El Guerrouj with a time of 3 mins 43 seconds (29 seconds faster). Just a week or so ago, a man broke the 2-hour mark on a marathon. Men are bigger, stronger, faster, often have more endurance, different muscle structure, different fat contents in the body, and on and on we can go. This is the truth; God made us that way. But the Lies of the left are going to destroy women's sports because no one wants to admit the truth.
Sadly, too many Christians have fallen into the lies because we do not spend enough time in the truth. Christians are not called to be social justice warriors; we are called to manage the planet, but only God can save it. We have two jobs: love God wholeheartedly and then love your neighbour. This is all done so that people can see Jesus more and more and come to Him for salvation.
Now to the actual lesson for today. Over the past few weeks, we have looked at another verse in conjunction with our theme verse; that is 2 Timothy 3:16-17:
"All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works."
In the first two lessons, we looked at the importance of doctrine, and we mentioned things like the doctrine of Creation: God made us in His image. The doctrine of Salvation: Jesus is the only way to be saved. As we mentioned earlier, there is a doctrine that God made men and women differently, and there is no amount of social engineering that will change the genetics that God put in place. Men cannot be women, and women cannot be men. It is that simple; no matter how many surgeries they have, or hormones they take, they cannot change the DNA. This is a doctrine.
In the last lesson, we spoke about reproof and correction. Reproof is defined as "an expression of blame or disapproval." Correction is defined as "a change that rectifies an error or an inaccuracy." Thus, reproof is pointing out sin and wrong; correction is then doing it the right way. We gave an example of this reproof and correction from Ephesians 4:28:
"Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labour, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth."
Here Paul highlights the improper behavior: stealing, and offers a correction: go and work. The Bible is filled with these; take the time to read the book of Proverbs.
Now we will look at the final part of the verse from 2 Timothy. Before we do, let us recap the theme verse from Proverbs 29:18: People need proper revelation, the proper teaching and exposition of the word of God to help them to be restrained in evil. Simply put, the more a society hears the teachings of the word of God, the less evil the people will be. Now you can understand why there is such a push to remove the Bible from the schools, from the public in general, and to remove the Ten Commandments from view, to remove in God we trust from sight. To make the Bible out to be an obsolete book that is filled with racism and violence, a book to be avoided not embraced.
It is very hard to promote sin and evil if the majority of the people know the Bible. It is hard to promote socialism, for instance, when the Bible makes the idea of personal ownership of things like land and livestock a man's right. It is very hard to promote paying people not to work when the Bible says a man who does not work should not eat. It is very hard to promote abortions when the Bible addresses babies in the womb as people with a purpose from God (read Jeremiah 1). We also see that true happiness comes from obeying God's laws; yes, by living under God's rules.
The Bible, when properly taught, provides us with foundational truths called doctrines; it provides us with an understanding of what is wrong and tells us what is right. Once these two parts are in place, we are then equipped to do "good works." Equipped to live righteously. One cannot live righteously without proper doctrine and without Godly reproof and correction. Good works is the fruit of the two.
Now let us first deal with the Lie of the Left: They say we are all good. Man, they say, is intrinsically good and may at times make a few mistakes. The saying 'I'm okay, you're okay' was coined a while ago, and neither side is true. We are not okay. A society without laws does not get better. Let me offer an example: There is a movie series called The Purge; there are several movies in the franchise, and I have watched one of them. The premise is that for one night there is no law. On this one night, you can do whatever you want without fear of the police. The movie is filled with death, pain and mayhem. This is what really happens when men cast off restraint. We unleash the evil in us. The Bible puts it this way in Romans 3:10-18:
10 As it is written:
"There is none righteous, no, not one;
11 There is none who understands; There is none who seeks after God.
12 They have all turned aside; They have together become unprofitable; There is none who does good, no, not one."
13 "Their throat is an open tomb; With their tongues they have practiced deceit."
"The poison of asps is under their lips."
14 "Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness."
15 "Their feet are swift to shed blood;
16 Destruction and misery are in their ways;
17 And the way of peace they have not known."
18 "There is no fear of God before their eyes."
This is the reality of who we are without Jesus. Read it slowly; let it sink in. Let the Holy Spirit open your eyes to what mankind is like without Jesus. According to these verses, we are incapable of good works. Look at verse 12: "There is none who does good, no, not one." Neither you nor I can do anything good. You are not okay, and neither am I.
But God has a ray of hope to offer us. When we take the Word of God seriously - when we regard it as precious, when we properly study it, read it, recall it, store it in our minds, when we submit it and regard it as powerful in our lives - we are then equipped in Jesus to do good works. But they can only be done after we have submitted to proper doctrine: God is Holy; we are not. God is good; we are not. God can save us; we need to be saved. Good works can then be done once we have begun the process of allowing God to change us. This is called sanctification or transformation; this is after we have been saved and now have the Holy Spirit living in us.
1 Corinthians 6: 19-20 "What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore, glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's."
Now, we can do good works. Now we can begin to be obedient to God. The Holy Spirit in us, and we are clothed in the righteousness of God and not in our own goodness, which the Bible tells us is no goodness at all. In Jesus, clothed in His righteousness, indwelt by His Holy Spirit and armed with the Holy Word of God, we are now capable of doing good works; and the first work is the surrender of our own bodies to the Lord. Take the time to read these verses in Romans 12: 1-2:
"I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God."
We will pick up with these verses next week and discover how we can do good works in Jesus, by Jesus, and for His glory.