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Section 9B .. The Future/

 

003white  Index to Section 9B... The Future     >      Signs of The Times

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Carol Brooks

ON THIS PAGE

Part I - Signs That Have Already Come to Pass

Recognizing The Season Of The Lord's Return

Understanding the Signs Takes Wisdom

The Dispersion and Re-gathering of Israel

The Rebirth of The Roman Empire

Many Are Already Here Saying "I am the Christ"

Lovers of Selves, Money and  Pleasure - Without Natural Affection

The Falling Away


Part II - Signs That Are Still Pending

The Abomination That Causes Desolation

As It Was In The Time Of Noah.



Recognizing The Season Of The Lord's Return
Matthew related how the Pharisees and Sadducees came to Jesus one day and asked Him to show them a sign from heaven to prove that He was the Messiah. What they were looking for was a miracle - probably the more spectacular the better. However, in response, Jesus rebuked them asking why they could forecast the weather from the appearance of the sky, but could not "interpret the signs of the times".

    When it is evening, you say, 'It will be fair weather, for the sky is red.' "And in the morning, 'There will be a storm today, for the sky is red and threatening.' Do you know how to discern the appearance of the sky, but cannot discern the signs of the times? "An evil and adulterous generation seeks after a sign; and a sign will not be given it, except the sign of Jonah." And He left them and went away. (Matthew 16:2-4 NASB)

Paul also made the point that we can recognize the season of the Lord's return. In 1 Thessalonians 5:1-6 he stated that even though the day of the Lord will come like "a thief in the night," that day should not overtake believers. Because we are "sons of light", we should not sleep but stay "alert and sober".

    Now as to the times and the epochs, brethren, you have no need of anything to be written to you. For you yourselves know full well that the day of the Lord will come just like a thief in the night. While they are saying, "Peace and safety!" then destruction will come upon them suddenly like labor pains upon a woman with child, and they will not escape. But you, brethren, are not in darkness, that the day would overtake you like a thief; for you are all sons of light and sons of day. We are not of night nor of darkness; so then let us not sleep as others do, but let us be alert and sober. (1 Thessalonians 5:1-6 NASB)

Similarly the author of Hebrews states that we are to "encourage one another" as we see the Day of Judgment drawing near (Hebrews 10:25).

Today it is no longer necessary to search for signs that are not only in abundance, but plain as day. However the prophet Daniel warned centuries ago that only the 'wise' would be able to understand them. To the spiritually un-discerning the signs mean absolutely nothing.

In other words,


Understanding the Signs Takes Wisdom
Seal the Book Until the Time of the End

    "But as for you, Daniel, conceal these words and seal up the book until the end of time; many will go back and forth, and knowledge will increase." (Daniel 12:4 NASB)

The "many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall increase" has usually been taken to mean that we would travel extensively - much further than our ancestors ever did. The increase is knowledge is assumed to mean we would be better educated than ever before.

    Note: Some take the 'run to and fro' not to refer to modern travel, but that people would 'run to and fro' searching after knowledge. It is also sometimes believed that 'knowledge' may not refer to science of history, but to knowledge of God's final purpose as revealed in prophecy. In view of the fact that the Bible also says the love of many will grow cold and apostasy will get worse and worse, I do not see how the angel was prophesying that more people would endeavor to understand the Scriptures and the prophecies they contain.

Knowledge has certainly increased. We have put men on the moon, transplanted hearts, cloned animals and unraveled many of the mysteries of DNA, but all the knowledge in the world does not equate with wisdom. In fact, wisdom is hard to find in this day and age because it comes not solely from knowledge, but how that knowledge is handled. And it takes wisdom to interpret the signs of the times. Daniel had a further question

    As for me, I heard but could not understand; so I said, "My lord, what will be the outcome of these events?" He said, "Go your way, Daniel, for these words are concealed and sealed up until the end time. (Daniel 12:8-9 NASB)

When the angel told Daniel to 'seal the book' and that 'the words are sealed till the time of the end', it could not mean that the actual book was to be sealed, since the book of Daniel has been part of Jewish Scripture for thousands of years. Therefore the angel's words could only mean one of two things. Either the understanding of the prophecies would be sealed until the end of time OR the prophecies themselves were sealed until the time came that they would be fulfilled.

However, in light of the angel's next words, I would have to opt for the non-understanding of the prophecies.

    "Many will be purged, purified and refined, but the wicked will act wickedly; and none of the wicked will understand, but those who have insight will understand. (Daniel 12:10 NASB)

 Isaiah said something similar ..

    The entire vision will be to you like the words of a sealed book, which when they give it to the one who is literate, saying, "Please read this," he will say, "I cannot, for it is sealed." (Isaiah 29:11 NASB)

In other words, the understanding of the prophecies would be limited to those who are wise. The learned could not necessarily understand what God had said - a situation that persists to this day.

Please Note: There are many end time prophecies that would have left people living just a few generations ago scratching their heads because they could only be understood in the light of certain historical events or technological developments that came later. For example Revelation 11:9 says that "men from every people, tribe, language and nation" will be able to look upon the dead bodies of the Two Witnesses. Only since the advent of television has this been possible.

This also holds true for the more recent past. In Romans 5 Paul seems to be saying that something happened to all humanity because of Adam's sin. Much of the Christian world has taken this to mean 'original sin' - that the sin of Adam was transferred to all future generations, tainting even the unborn. One way or the other, Adam's sin was imputed or charged to our account, with the result that we too are legally guilty. In other words.. we all sinned when Adam sinned or, as they like to put it, we all sinned "in Adam". However, there are innumerable passages of Scripture that, clearly and unambiguously, tell us that no person can bear the guilt (or innocence) of another, but will only answer for their own sins and misdeeds... That our eternal destiny is determined by our conduct and that every single person will be judged by his own actions whether they be good or bad. So how can we understand what Paul said? The answer to the above question may very well be found in relatively new scientific discoveries... the emerging field of Epigenetics. See Original Sin Or Epigenetics

You might, as I did, find David Reagan's article The Exponential Curve - Is It A Sign That Jesus Is Returning Soon? very interesting


The Dispersion and Re-gathering of Israel
Very early on in the history of Israel Moses led the people to the edge of the promised land. Shortly before he died and the nation crossed the Jordan into Canaan, he did his best to impress on the people that they only held title to the land because of the covenant their fathers had made with God. However, they needed to remember that the covenant came with both benefits and obligations.

Moses told them that if they were obedient to God, He would bless them abundantly (Deuteronomy 28:1-14). However, should they decide to do their own thing and not obey His law they would pay an enormous price. They would be struck with plague, sickness and disease - their crops would fail and their animals would not reproduce (Deuteronomy 28:15 on). However, the biggest blow of all for a people that finally had a land to call their own, was that they would lose it.

    "Moreover, the Lord will scatter you among all peoples, from one end of the earth to the other end of the earth; and there you shall serve other gods, wood and stone, which you or your fathers have not known. "Among those nations you shall find no rest, and there will be no resting place for the sole of your foot; but there the Lord will give you a trembling heart, failing of eyes, and despair of soul. (Deuteronomy 28:64-65 NASB)

Jesus also said that

    they will fall by the edge of the sword, and will be led captive into all the nations; and Jerusalem will be trampled under foot by the Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled. (Luke 21:24 NASB)

However, back in the day, Ezekiel who prophesied that the Lord would scatter the Jews among the nations (Ezekiel 22:14-15), also prophesied that the Lord would bring Israel back to her own land and that she would never again be a divided nation,

    "The sticks on which you write will be in your hand before their eyes. "Say to them, 'Thus says the Lord God, "Behold, I will take the sons of Israel from among the nations where they have gone, and I will gather them from every side and bring them into their own land; and I will make them one nation in the land, on the mountains of Israel; and one king will be king for all of them; and they will no longer be two nations and no longer be divided into two kingdoms. (Ezekiel 37:20-22 NASB)

How the Jews returned to Palestine and formed of a state of their own is a story that boggles the mind, especially considering that the little country was surrounded by hostile Arab nations who hated them. Yet, against all odds, a series of events culminated in exactly what the Lord told us would.

    Due in part to one man, a world Zionist movement was formed . The land that was under British control at the end of World War I. Eventually, in 1917 the British issued the Balfour Declaration, a statement of their support for "the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people".  However, it wasn't until Nov. 29, 1947, after a long period of lobbying and much pressure put on various countries that the United Nations General Assembly passed a resolution calling for Palestine to be partitioned between the Arabs and Jews.

    Note, the British went back on their word and abstained from voting. Not did they do anything to prevent the large scale of Arab rioting that saw thousands of Jews killed. They left Israel and lowered their flag on May 15, 1948 and the Jews immediately raised their own and read their declaration of independence. After almost 2000 years they had their country back - Even the most hardened soldiers cried freely and, with the rest of the population, danced in the streets.  The celebration didn't last long. Within what seemed like minutes, five Arab countries declared war and Egypt bombed Tel Aviv. But nothing stopped Israel. Not only did they win the war and save Jerusalem but gained some additional territory in subsequent battles. And the population kept swelling - the Nazi holocaust drove hundreds of thousands of Jews to Palestine who otherwise would have stayed in Europe.

This is a ridiculously short summary of the almost unbelievable story of how the Jews regained their land. I believe the two articles below both by Dr. David R. Reagan (Lamb & Lion Ministries) are a must read to properly understand God's dealing with Israel.

The Dispersion of the Jews

The Regathering of the Jewish People

The second one also tells how an prophecy made by Isaiah was fulfilled down to the smallest detail - especially the North and South bit.

    "Do not fear, for I am with you; I will bring your offspring from the east, And gather you from the west. "I will say to the north, 'Give them up!' And to the south, 'Do not hold them back.' Bring My sons from afar And My daughters from the ends of the earth, (Isaiah 43:5-6 NASB)


The Rebirth of The Roman Empire
When the prophet Daniel asked for the interpretation of the visions he was seeing, especially the meaning of the fourth beast that was far more dreadful than the others, an angel told him that

  'The fourth beast will be a fourth kingdom on the earth, which will be different from all the other kingdoms and will devour the whole earth and tread it down and crush it. 'As for the ten horns, out of this kingdom ten kings will arise; and another will arise after them, and he will be different from the previous ones and will subdue three kings. 'He will speak out against the Most High and wear down the saints of the Highest One, and he will intend to make alterations in times and in law; and they will be given into his hand for a time, times, and half a time. (Daniel 7:23-25 NASB)

Note: Daniel chapters two and seven parallel each other inasmuch as both prophesy a succession of empires, beginning with the Babylonians and followed by Medo-Persia, Greece and Rome. The animal imagery of chapter 7 corresponds to the sections of the statue in chapter 2.

In chapter 7 the angel told Daniel that a kingdom will one day arise that will be different from all other kingdoms because it will devour the whole earth. Space does not permit going into detail here but this fourth kingdom that springs from an apparently dormant (not dead) Roman Empire, will be the dominant force in the world when our Lord returns... 'devouring the whole earth'. See A Dragon and Two Beasts

For a long time now, those who seriously study God's word have been convinced that we are currently seeing the beginning of the fulfillment of these prophecies inasmuch as the rebirth of the Roman Empire has taken place in the form of the European Union. Whether they are in favor of the EU or not, most are under the impression that it is just a political organization. However, if one were to pay close attention, the European Union's flag, anthem, architecture, and its logo are all indicative of the major spiritual implications behind a supposedly secular organization. 

See The European Union Peaceful Political Entity Or The Fifth And Final Gentile Kingdom Spoken Of By The Prophet Daniel?

The EU Superstate
Twenty five hundred years ago Daniel saw the Roman Empire revived from the dead in the end times. Then, in September, came quite a shock: The EU, at an astonishing art exhibition sketching the future of the organization, described itself under the heading : "Roman Empire Returns."


Many Are Already Here Saying "I am the Christ"

Matthew 24 relates how one of the disciples, apparently taken with the splendor of the temple, commented on it's size and beauty and the immensity of the building's stones from which it was constructed. At which Jesus made a dire prophecy that the time was coming when not one stone would be left still standing on another.

Some of the disciples then asked Jesus in private when this would come to pass, and when the end of the age would come (24:3). Jesus did not immediately answer the question - His first words were a warning

And Jesus answered and said to them, "See to it that no one misleads you. "For many will come in My name, saying, 'I am the Christ,' and will mislead many. (Matthew 24:4-5 NASB)

While virtually no one (no sane person anyway) announces that they are 'the Christ', bear in mind that Christ' is not a name, but a title.

The word Christos is the Greek translation of the Hebrew mashiach - 'messiah' or 'anointed one'. However, when the English translators came across Christos in the New Testament they did not translate the word, but transliterated it. Transliteration means that a word in one language is simply written using the alphabet of another. Thus the Greek Christos became Christ and antichristos (an-tee'-khris-tos) became antichrist. See The Antichrist

In short - the word 'Christ' means The Anointed One. In other words, Jesus answered a direct question about what signs would signify the end of the world with a warning that 'Many would come in His name claiming they were 'anointed'

This word "anointed" has arguably become the most overused, misunderstood, and misinterpreted term in the Pentecostal and Charismatic arenas. liberally used by preachers /teachers in an uncountable number of charismatic or evangelical services, programs, tracts, books etc.  Many Charismatics claim to be 'anointed' and some have described this 'anointing' as closely akin to feeling heat or electricity. At various times they either claim to be 'under' the anointing, can 'feel' the anointing come over them or in the room, and often issues stern warnings to their critics not to touch the Lord's anointed. Virtually all the references to the anointing place it in the category of a commodity... Something that not all Christians possess and that the ministers can bestow on others (Usually after money has changed hands). . See The Anointing


Lovers of Selves, Money and  Pleasure - Without Natural Affection
Paul opened his second letter to Timothy with the words

But realize this, that in the last days difficult (Gr. chalepos) times will come for men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, unloving, irreconcilable, malicious gossips, without self-control, brutal, haters of good, treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, (2 Timothy 3:1-4 NASB)

I have no idea why the NASB chose to translate the Greek chalepos into 'difficult' which gives one the impression that the situation isn't that terrible. The only other time chalepos is used in the New Testament is to describe two demon-possessed men. I hardly think that people could not go near them because they were being 'difficult' but because they were dangerous, savage and violent men.

When He came to the other side into the country of the Gadarenes, two men who were demon-possessed met Him as they were coming out of the tombs. They were so extremely violent (Gr. chalepos) that no one could pass by that way. (Matthew 8:28 NASB)

So, it is more than likely that Paul was telling Timothy that is the last days we would see perilous, dangerous and even violent days.

It is not exactly rocket science to demonstrate how every single one of Paul's points are increasingly coming to fulfillment with the passing of each day.  It is interesting that he began and ended his list with several forms of misguided love -


Lovers of Money Rather Than Lovers of God
Today, more than ever before the world is driven by the bottom line. Money has to be made at any cost, even if it means the terrible death of hundreds of thousands of people. For example, a recent 60 minutes program was about whistle blower Joe Rannazzisi who claimed that drug distributors pumped opioids into U.S. communities fully aware that the drugs were killing people. The drug distribution industry shipped, almost unchecked, hundreds of millions of pills to rogue pharmacies and pain clinics providing the rocket fuel for a crisis that, over the last two decades, has claimed 200,000 lives. 

And he went further, claiming that industry lobbyists and Congress derailed the DEA's efforts to stop it. You can read the article or watch the video HERE

Why do I not have any trouble believing this? The bottom line is all that matters to countless organizations and big business around the world. Just try getting your medical insurance to pay for a procedure they do not deem necessary.


Lovers of Pleasure
If you have ever paid attention to what is going on around you, you must had realized that much, if not most, of the world is engaged in an endless pursuit of pleasure and "fun" - one of the buzzwords of our day. Nothing is worth doing unless it is 'fun. All to many people seem to spend their lives in anticipation of, or planning for the next round of pleasurable activity. All too many teen agers spend their lives 'hanging out', chasing the opposite sex, partying, even experimenting with drugs and alcohol. Sadly, as they grow up 'having fun' pnly carries a larger price tag - involving big houses and cars, trips to exotic locations, weekend getaways etc. Much of again fueled by alcohol.  

But what is words is that for many of this generation, virtually nothing is taboo - they know no boundaries and break all unwritten rules. As he popular slogan goes - Just do it.


Without Natural Affection
 When the apostle Paul said that in the last days there would be people "without natural affection" he used the word astorgos, the opposite of Storge - to cherish.

And all you have to do to verify the truth of Paul's prediction is turn on the television or open a newspaper.

We kill, assault, cheat and steal with reckless abandon. Mass murder is the order of the day - the more people they kill the more successful terrorists consider themselves. People simply discard their unborn like pieces of trash, because the natural family bond of love and affection has broken down. The list is endless and a tragic commentary on what we have become.


Lovers of Selves
Although I have put this last, loving oneself is the root cause of all the end times characteristics that people are displaying as Paul said they would.

Most people born in the early part of the 20th century or earlier rarely put themselves before God, country and family. Tragically this is more the exception than the rule today. For the most part, people are so self-centered, and self-absorbed, so focused on themselves - so obsessed with how they feel, that this is aptly called the me generation. It is a time when self-realization, self-fulfillment and self-love have become the new standard, replacing the concepts of duty and responsibility to the society they live in. In fact, our entire culture is obsessed with gratifying self.

Unfortunately, much of the church has followed right along in the footsteps of the world. Instead of opposing the world's glorification of self, Christians have jumped on the bandwagon and set up their own cheering section. Countless best-selling books that claim that society's greatest problem is that of "low self-esteem" are now being promoted by "conservative" Christian leaders -

For example, Robert Schuller's Hour of Power weekly televised church service reached an audience approaching 20 million people on all continents. Yet, in Self-Esteem: The New Reformation (Word Books, 1982), Schuller taught that:

    (1) the church's problem is that it has had a God-centered theology for centuries, when it needs a man-centered one;

    (2) we're not bad, merely badly informed about how good we are;

    (3) it would be an insult to the integrity of any human being to call him a sinner; and

    (4) "Jesus knew His worth; His success fed His self-esteem. He suffered the cross to sanctify His self-esteem and He bore the cross to sanctify your self-esteem. The cross will sanctify the ego trip" (p. 115). according to Schuller, sin was merely the lack of self-esteem. In his words

And he went even further, saying he believed in " positive thinking" that was "almost as important as the resurrection of Jesus Christ"" [01]

Josh McDowell, once known for his apologetics (Evidence That Demands a Verdict, Answers to Tough Questions, and Reasons Skeptics Should Consider Christianity) also jumped on the bandwagon. In his book, The Secret of Loving he wrote.

    "You are special also because you are of great value and worth to God. ... The value or worth of an object is usually determined by the price one is willing to pay to purchase or redeem it. It couldn't be more true for you and me ... I am worth the price God paid for me, which was 'Jesus' ... the real basis for a healthy self-image is to understand and accept the value God has placed on you. ... Christ's loving actions on your behalf have demonstrated and documented forever the great value you have to God" (pp. 24-25)

     "I can go back to the motel room, look in the mirror and say, 'McDowell, you're cool! I like you. - ' When one has a healthy self-image, you can do that" (p. 31).

    It's okay for a Christian to buy flowers for himself or herself just, "Because I like myself ..." McDowell then relates the story of being away from home, buying himself five dozen flowers, placing the flowers all over his room, "And every time I look at a dozen flowers, it's going to be God saying to me, 'Josh, I love you. Josh, I accept you. Josh, I forgive you. Josh, as the Father has loved Me, so have I loved you. Josh, you're special!' I'll look at each dozen flowers and hear God saying, 'Josh, you're of great value. I created you in My image. Josh, you're unique'" (p. 34). [02]

They have all apparently forgotten that the Bible says,

    but let him who boasts boast of this, that he understands and knows Me, that I am the LORD who exercises loving kindness, justice and righteousness on earth; for I delight in these things," declares the Lord. (Jeremiah 9:24 NASB)

    But he who boasts is to boast in the Lord. For it is not he who commends himself that is approved, but he whom the Lord commends. (2 Corinthians 10:17-18 NASB)


The Falling Away
In his letter to the Thessalonians Paul mentioned several things that had to happen before the day of the Lord arrive, i.e.  great apostasy when some will fall away from the faith, paying attention to deceitful spirits and doctrines of demons. Also the man if sin would be revealed.

Let no one in any way deceive you, for it will not come unless the apostasy comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of destruction, (2 Thessalonians 2:3 NASB)

For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance to their own desires, and will turn away their ears from the truth and will turn aside to myths. (2 Timothy 4:3-4 NASB)

The problem is that although most Christians know there will be great apostasy or falling away from the faith, they seem to think (i.e. if they think about it at all) that it will happen at some vague point in time in the future. What few seem to realize is that the apostasy of the last days isn't coming, IT IS ALREADY HERE.  The falling away has gone largely unrecognized simply because it does not conform to the common perception that apostasy involves believers becoming less religious and more materialistic - less spiritual and more worldly.

It exactly the opposite.

Certainly a large percentage of humanity has become more carnal however, a staggering number of people have actually become more spiritual, seeking out the divine in every possible nook and cranny, including within themselves. While their  counterparts outside the church are  focused on raising their level of consciousness and attaining enlightenment and self-actualization through an assortments of spiritual practices, modern Christians are trying to 'find God' or enhance their experience of Jesus by highly questionable means  like contemplative prayer, meditation, labyrinths, yoga etc.

The only difference being that Christians hide their extra-biblical practices under a thin veneer of Christianity.

Although I suppose that it possible that the apostasy can get worse, I fail to see how it can get much worse. Christianity is at an all time low … scraping the bottom of the barrel as it were. Which means the man of sin isn't far behind. We are seeing Paul's words come to pass.

Most have turned away from the faith, which was once for all delivered to the saints. It wasn't bad enough that egomaniacs like Joseph Smith (Mormonism) and deluded people like Charles T. Russell (founder of the Jehovah's Witnesses), Mary Baker Eddy (founder of Christian Science), Charles Fillmore (Unity) each came up with their own brand of religion (thinly disguised as Christianity) and led countless sheep to their doom but the wolves within the flock have bared their teeth.

It wasn't bad enough that

    Men like Franklin Hall and William Branham gave birth to the Latter Rain/Kingdom Now movement. That men like men such as Rick Joyner, Paul Cain, Bob Jones John Paul Jackson, Marc Dupont, Francis Frangipane and countless others who have now followed their lead … ran with the ridiculous belief that before Jesus can return, the Church must establish the Kingdom of God on earth by taking control over every aspect of life through the establishment of a theocratic government.

    Leading 'Christian' television station (TBN) harbors heretics and false prophets by the score while commanding a huge following around the world.

    The charismatic movement eventually led to excesses like the Toronto Blessing where people imagine that the more bizarre the behavior, the more 'filled with the Holy Spirit' one is. Pentecostal fervor blended with supernatural manifestations and occult activity is now called Christianity. See Tongues, Slain in The Spirit, Counterfeit Revivals, Word of Faith etc. on THIS Page

    The likes of Nicky Gumbel picked up on this monstrosity, started the Alpha Course and spread it around the world.

No all this was not bad enough.. So Satan took a look around and realized that there were still too many doctrinally solid Christians around, many of them in mainline denomination.  It didn't take him long to figure out that many of these Christians would easily fall prey to one 'of their own'.

    Enter Rick Warren, who with his dubious doctrine, shocking associations and extra Biblical ideas has a few more dents into an already very battered building. See The Purpose Driven Life

    Then, in a stroke of genius Satan decided he would teach Christians how to "Grow their Churches" which gave rise to organizations like Willow Creek Association (WCA). Unsuspecting churches that frequently use Willow Creek resources, seminars and attend their conferences have not bothered to investigate the fact that Willow Creek directly or indirectly validates people who openly promote Eastern mysticism, humanistic psychology, and radical ecumenism. See Seeker Friendly, Church Growth Failures in The Bible

    In a sickening return to the rock from which we came, too many have been convinced that the Roman Catholic church is simply another branch of Christianity and has put out the Olive branch, with many evangelicals, like Robert Schuller, openly proclaiming that it is time to go to the pope and ask what we have to do to "come home".

    And let us not forget that the church in general and the Emerging church in particular have adopted numerous mystical practices which are either a direct legacy of Roman Catholic mysticism or are a deceptive derivative of it. In doing so, they have introduced countless numbers of people to the world of the occult.  See The Emerging Church and Briah McLaren. Also see Contemplative prayer below.

If we take all of the above and couple it with the New Age and Rock Music infiltration of the church you are forced to the appalling conclusion that there isn't much left of Christ in our so called Christianity. If anything, we are more dead and more damned than we were when we started out.

We have signed our own Death Warrants.

 

 Also See Contemplative Prayer
Although not meant to replace other kinds of prayer, the basic idea behind Contemplative Prayer is to curtail one's imagination/thought process and totally center one's mind on God - not by conscious thought, but by simply feeling God within - an indescribable union with Him. Unfortunately, in this world of 'warm fuzzies' people are obsessed with how they feel. Thus they assume that if they feel the presence of God, He must be there. The problem is Contemplative Prayer is not only unsupported by Scripture, but the methods used by 'Christian' mystics to achieve a "higher realm of consciousness", and the experience once they do, is is exactly the same as Buddhist meditators, Hindus, New Agers, Shamans, Witches etc. However, since it is certain that, regardless of personal belief, something does transpire during mystical experiences, the question that springs to mind is what can explain this phenomena. Let us not forget that evil spirits have been practicing the art of deception for thousands of years, and willingly give whatever experiences they know people will fall for.

The End of The Age
The coming Kingdom of God which Jesus said He was sent to proclaim is no pie in the sky ethereal place 'somewhere out there', but matches, in every respect, the world most men and women would choose to live in... a place of peace and safety, where there is no crime, hunger and disease, no war and, above all, no death. (However, no unbelieving, unrighteous, evil, untrustworthy, unloving, unmerciful, murderous, insolent, arrogant, malicious, greedy or deceitful person will ever be a part of His eternal Kingdom. Which means, He has to first 'clean house'.

The catalogue of man's greed, ruthlessness, and inhumanity to his fellow man is one that has no end. Increasingly, modern society, flaunts its sins like Sodom once did, without the slightest effort to conceal them. But, as the prophet Isaiah said, "Woe to them! For they have brought evil on themselves" (3:9). There is a day looming on the horizon when mankind's iniquity exhaust the patience of God Himself, at which point in time He will pour out His wrath, or retributive justice, on the earth, punishing transgressors, and ending all the injustice and suffering in this world. God's kingdom will be preceded by a devastating period of time such as man has never before seen. This will be the darkest time in human history, when even the heavens and earth will tremble at His power and fury, the moon will turn to blood, and the sun will no longer gives out its light.


Part II - Signs That Are Still Pending

The Abomination That Causes Desolation

    "Therefore when you see the Abomination Of Desolation which was spoken of through Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place (let the reader understand), then those who are in Judea must flee to the mountains. "Whoever is on the housetop must not go down to get the things out that are in his house. "Whoever is in the field must not turn back to get his cloak. "But woe to those who are pregnant and to those who are nursing babies in those days! "But pray that your flight will not be in the winter, or on a Sabbath. "For then there will be a great tribulation, such as has not occurred since the beginning of the world until now, nor ever will. [Matthew 24: 15-21]

What I find particularly tragic is that when asked about the signs of the end times, too many members of the so called church, mutter something about wars and rumors of wars and believe that they actually have a handle on the signs.

So what exactly did Jesus say about wars? In Matthew 24:6 He said.. " You will be hearing of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not frightened, for those things must take place, but that is not yet the end".  Which sounds more like He was assuring His disciples that they were not to be unnecessarily troubled by every small and large scale skirmish that broke out since they were not signs of the Apocalypse. As a matter of fact, "Wars and rumors of wars," sums up the entire history of mankind who, if they not actively engaged in a war, are making plans for the next one. Wars, famines and earthquakes being pretty much fall into the usual scheme of things and no matter how terrible the situation, no one should be drawn into an "end of the world" panic.

In the words of David Haggith…

    "Having said all of that, he makes this statement about the "Abomination that causes Desolation" and speaks of a time when events would be more horrifying than anything the world had ever seen or ever would see again. Suddenly, it appears his words have moved into a different time than the days when the temple would be destroyed. While those were horrifying days for people living in Israel, they were no worse than many a siege that had been laid against many a city for days immemorial, and they were not as bad as the holocaust of the twenty-first century. Terrible, yes, but not the worst days the "world" would ever see.

He goes on to give several other signs, but the one to really focus on is this one that he calls "the Abomination that causes Desolation." He offers no indication of what the abomination may be, and one might wonder why he wasn't more clear, especially if this was the key sign of his return.

What exactly is this "abomination of desolation". Could this sign be completely different from what we have long believed? While we cannot know for certain it may be well worthwhile to keep this point of view on the back burner. See The Abomination That Causes Desolation


As It Was In The Time Of Noah.

Also we need to be prepared for the fact that future conditions will parallel those that existed in the time Of Noah.

    "For the coming of the Son of Man will be just like the days of Noah. (Matthew 24:37 NASB)

Since our Lord linked these two epochs together and said that one would reflect the other, it behooves us to look into what the Bible says about the days immediately preceding the flood.  From a Biblical point of view, there were two aspects to life on the planet in those days, one of which exists again while the other is yet to come.. and God help us all when it does.

1) In those days the earth was filled with violence and "corrupt before God".

    Then God said to Noah, "The end of all flesh has come before Me; for the earth is filled with violence because of them; and behold, I am about to destroy them with the earth. (Genesis 6:13 NASB)

The earth being filled with violence does not mean that American crime statistics are on the upswing... it means that the entire earth is full of violence. And that it is. In 2017 it has been difficult to find a tiny corner of the globe that has not seen bloodshed, aggression, hostility and brutality. Some places have literally been decimated paving the way for a probably unparalleled refugee crisis.

2) However it is the other part of the prophecy that should chill the bones of anyone with an iota of sense.

    Now it came about, when men began to multiply on the face of the land, and daughters were born to them, that the sons of God saw that the daughters of men were beautiful; and they took wives for themselves, whomever they chose. Then the LORD said, "My Spirit shall not strive with man forever, because he also is flesh; nevertheless his days shall be one hundred and twenty years." The Nephilim were on the earth in those days, and also afterward, when the sons of God came in to the daughters of men, and they bore children to them. Those were the mighty men who were of old, men of renown. (Genesis 6:1-4 NASB)

To know what to expect one must focus on the questions.. Who were these sons of God? What kind of beings did these strange things? See  The Days Of Noah

 

End Notes

[01] Michael Nason and Donna Nason, Robert Schuller: The Inside Story, 1983, p. 152.

[02] Josh McDowell - General Teachings/Activities. Biblical Discernment Ministries.
http://www.rapidnet.com/~jbeard/bdm/exposes/mcdowell/general.htm

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