When will the end of time come? When will all this take place? What are the signs of His coming? Are they still to take place, or are most of them already fulfilled?
In this section, I am going to lay it out for you in a manner, I hope, that you will be able to see CLEARLY, just how far we are into the end of time.
Let’s recap what we have learned. Daniel two told us that time would continue down from the head of gold, Babylon – 605 BC, to the toes, our day. At that time, and "in the time of those kings, the God of heaven will set up a kingdom that will never be destroyed, nor will it be left to another people. It will crush all those kingdoms and bring them to an end, but it will itself endure forever." Daniel 2:44. "In the time of those kings . . .". Jesus was born at the time of those kings. He is the Rock that was cut out without human hands. His kingdom has been growing and growing in the earth since that time. Soon it will "crush all those kingdoms and bring them to an end."
Just taking that text, we find that we are living in the last days. There will be no other Western European nation to rise and take the place of the ten toes: England, Germany, Switzerland, France, Italy, Portugal and Spain. (As we learned earlier, three were uprooted by the Catholic Church and are no longer a part of this message.)
The next large time prophecy would be given in Daniel seven. We are told in Daniel seven, verse 25, that the "saints will be handed over to him (Catholic Church) for a time, times and half a time." As you have studied, that time period ran from AD 538 to AD 1798 when the pope was taken captive. That fulfilled the time prophecy of Daniel seven and Revelation 12:6, 14; 13:3, 5. (Time, times, half of times; 1260 days; and forty-two months are all the same time period.)
The next time prophecy that brings us down to our day is Daniel 8:14 and 9:25-27. As we have learned earlier, these prophecies are one. They begin in 457 BC and are fulfilled in a continuum of successive dates down to our day. 457 BC, 408 BC, AD 27, AD 30 and AD 1844.
Let’s take a look at some more prophecies and see how close they bring us to the close of probation.
The disciples came up to Jesus one day and asked Him, "when will this happen, and what will be the sign of Your coming and of the end of the age?" Matthew 24:3.
In mercy to this question and the disciples, Jesus answered it in combination. One part of this combination had to do with the destruction of Jerusalem. The other part had to do with the end of the world. Since both parallel each other, it makes perfect sense for Jesus to combine the allegories. Also, to the disciples, the destruction of Jerusalem was the "end of the world" to them.
In every "age" there is an "end of time" for those people. The prophecies of the Bible have a primary fulfillment, and many secondary fulfillments that would be understood by each generation.
If you were a Jew or Christian at the time of the disciples, your end of time would come with the destruction of the Temple. In your world, that would be the end. Martin Luther, based on the reading of prophecy as he understood it, thought the end of time would take place in his day, the 1600's.
In verse four we find the first sign dealing more specifically with the end of Jerusalem. After Christ, many people arose and claimed to be THE messiah. However, the disciples had been warned. All true Christians gave them no heed.
Today we would not be fooled by such a claim. We know that the Messiah has already come. However, if you rephrase that just a little bit, it will sound very familiar. "I have Christ living in me." "I come in the Name of Christ." "I am filled with the Holy Spirit." "Our church is spirit filled." "We speak with tongues." "I am prophet so and so." "Our church is the remnant." "You must belong to our church."
Sound familiar? Jesus said that these would "deceive many." Matthew 24:5. Just because they claim to have the Holy Spirit, or claim to have Christ living in them or claim to come in the Name of Christ, doesn’t mean they work for Jesus. Watch out. We must take everything to the Bible and test the spirit that is claiming to have Christ. If the spirit teaches the teachings of Jesus: stop sinning, be perfect and keep the Ten Commandments to have eternal life, it is from God. If not, it is from the devil. 2 John 1:8-11.
The next is wars and rumors of wars, nation against nation.
The next is wars and rumors of wars, nation against nation. The interesting note about this prediction is that Jesus said don’t concern yourself about this part of the prediction. There will always be wars and conflicts, and those are everyday things and have nothing to do with the end of time. "You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are NOT ALARMED. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come." Matthew 24:6.
So what do we look for? "Famines and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of birth pains." Matthew 24:7, 8. "Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be great earthquakes, famines and pestilence in various places, and fearful events and great signs from heaven." Luke 21:10. (This is happening today as never before in earth's history. Are you reading the news? Look at terrorism.)
Now we are getting somewhere. You see, it is the devil who likes to bring famines, earthquakes, pestilence, etc. The Lord Jesus is always trying to protect us from these assaults of the devil. God loves us. However, if we remove ourselves from His protection, then we will be visited with these things. Today, people and scientists are governments want you to believe these things are happening because of global warming. They aren't. They are happening because the world has rejected God's laws. It is a sin thing.
Job was an example. The Lord removed His protection just so the universe and the world could see the true character of the devil. This was a very special circumstance. In the end of time, God has promised, like the Israelites in Egypt, that none of these plagues would fall on His special people who earn their eternal salvation by obedience to the Ten Commandments.
The reason they are falling on the world is because the world has rejected the truths of God. They will become more RELIGIOUS, but not Christian. The world will set up its own religious laws. Look at the acceptance of drugs and homosexuality. Soon the world will pass the Sunday law forcing all to follow the devil’s religion. Because of that, the Holy Spirit is being withdrawn (pushed away) from the world and is being poured out in greater power on the righteous who keep the Ten Commandments of God and His Seventh-day Sabbath.
In verses 10 through 12 we find:
Do we see that today? In no other time of history, except for the time directly preceding the flood, do we find all these things taking place. They are happening now. They are and always have been the true test of the coming of a disaster. God is only interested in righteousness. As we learned earlier, if there were only 10 righteous people in Sodom and Gomorrah, He would have spared them.
If Jerusalem had only a few righteous people in it, God would not have destroyed it by the armies of Babylon. But because at the time of the flood, Sodom, Egypt, Jerusalem in 605 BC, Jerusalem again in AD 70 and the world today, there are only a remnant of righteous, God must destroy the world and remake it. He cannot tolerate sin. The world has altogether cast off the law of God today and it cannot be stopped.
"So when you see standing
in the holy place the ‘abomination that causes desolation’, spoken of through the prophet Daniel – let the reader understand -- … for then there will be great distress, unequaled from the beginning of the world until now – never to be equaled again." Matthew 24:15, 21.
What is supposed to be holy? The churches, our bodies and the Word of God along with the Ten Commandments are to be holy. What is happening today? The churches no longer teach the truth of the Word of God. They have mixed humanism, socialism and evolution into their teaching. No longer is the Word of God taught as the Rock we can stand on, but as a philosophy that we silly little humans can improve upon. The Ten Commandments are no longer taught as relevant to our lives. (At least not all of them.) “Saved by grace” (unconditional love) is taught instead of “Saved by obedience”. Homosexuality and ordained women are now accepted in the church. All an “abomination” unto the Lord.
The "distress of those days" that Jesus spoke about, referred specifically to the 1260 years that would be ruled by the Catholic Church. That time ended, as noted above, in 1798. Nevertheless, a parallel time of distress called the time of Jacob's trouble is soon to burst upon us.
There was a great earthquake
The sun will be darkened
The moon will not give its light (turn red)
The stars will fall from the sky
If you check your encyclopedia, you will find that these events have already taken place. Let’s do them in order.
"The Lisbon Earthquake of 1755. Portugal, Spain, and northern Morocco were subjected to three strong shocks in the forenoon of Nov. 1, 1755. Lisbon was near the northern end of a zone of great damage which extended south into Morocco. It was All Saints’ Day and, as many of the churches were destroyed, the loss of life was very heavy. In Lisbon, probably 20 percent or more of the population perished as a result of the earthquake or the great sea wave generated by it, and over half the houses were ruined. The shocks were felt over much of Europe affecting an area of at least 1,500,000 square miles." Collier’s (Stay out of the churches!)
"Almost, if not altogether alone, as the most mysterious and as yet unexplained phenomenon of its kind, in nature’s diversified range of events, during the last century, stands the Dark Day of May Nineteenth, 1780,--a most unaccountable darkening of the whole visible heavens and atmosphere in New England,--which brought intense alarm and distress to multitudes of minds, as well as dismay in the brute creation, the fowls fleeing, bewildered, to their roosts, and the birds to their nests, and the cattle returning to their stalls. Indeed, thousands of the good people of that day became fully convinced that the end of all things terrestrial had come; many gave up, for the time, their secular pursuits, and betook themselves to religious devotions." "Our First Century" by R.M. Devens, published 1879
That night, when the darkness ended, the moon was darkened and looked blood red.
"Extensive and magnificent showers of shooting stars have been known to occur at various places in modern times; but the most universal and wonderful which has ever been recorded is that of the thirteenth of November, 1833, the whole firmament, over all the United States, being then, for hours, in fiery commotion! No celestial phenomenon has ever occurred in this country, since its first settlement, which was viewed with such intense admiration by one class in the community, or with so much dread and alarm by another… During the three hours of its continuance, the day of judgment was believed to be only waiting for sunrise… Impromptu meetings for prayer were held in many places." "Our First Century" by R.M. Devens, published 1879.
As you can see,we are at the end of earth’s history. All time prophecies
came to an end, on or before 1844. All except one, the time prophecy that
tells us the length of the plagues. The Bible says that there is no more time.
Rev. 10:6. How true that is. We are like the world before the flood,
living on borrowed time. The ark of God is being built right now to house
the remnant of God. Are you ready to forsake the world and prepare for
a new world?
An interesting point can be made with Noah and his ark. It would seem to me that if you were living back in that day, and had money, what would you do? Would you take a chance that Noah might not be right? Would you build yourself an ark, just in case?
I have no problem with the concept that there may be hundreds of arks littering the Ararat mountain range. That could be the reason why so many people claim to have found "the" ark.
But you see, God didn’t say, build your own ark. He told them that they had to get into the one Noah was building. Even if it wasn’t pretty or luxurious. Even if you had to feed animals and shovel manure. It might be stinky and smelly, but it was the one that would save you. Why? Because God said so. It was the one with His protection. It took humility to get into it.
You may have had your ark sitting behind the house, just in case. And when the rain came, your family may have had time to jump in and close the door. But you didn’t survive because the flood was so great, the storm so intense, that even Satan feared for his life. Your ark, along with all the others leaked, sank and were destroyed.
But you say, Jesus stated that we would not know the day nor the hour. That only the Father knows these things. You are correct. I don’t know the day or the hour. However, I will be able to tell you the year. You see, Jesus comes as a thief in the night, not to the righteous, but to the wicked.
"Now, brothers, about times and dates we do not need to write to you, for you know very well that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night. While people are saying, ‘Peace and safety,’ destruction will come on them suddenly, as labor pains on a pregnant woman, and they will not escape." 1 Thessalonians 5:1-3.
Here we have stated very clearly that the day of the Lord comes on those who are saying, ‘Peace and safety.’ Look at the world around you. What do you hear? Everyone is talking about the peace and safety of the church. The peace and safety of being a Christian. The peace and safety of the government. How the new world order will bring peace and safety to this world. How we are all to get along and come together in unity and peace. How the government will control our economy and the stock market will never crash again. Right! Homeland Defense!
All of that is a waste of time. They are lost. They don’t know the times of destruction that are ahead of us. "But you, brothers, are not in darkness so that this day should surprise you like a thief." "So then, let us not be like others, who are ASLEEP, but let us be alert and self-controlled." 1 Thessalonians 5:4, 6.
The whole reason for Daniel, chapters 2, 7, 8, 9, and Revelation are to prepare us for the close of probation. If you are prepared, you won’t be caught asleep nor be surprised like a thief. Revelation was given to "show His servants what must soon take place…what you have seen, what is now and what will take place later. Blessed is the one who reads the words of this prophecy, and blessed are those who hear it and take to heart what is written in it, because the time is near." Revelation 1:1, 19, 3.
If you’re being taught that it is a long way off and is for the distant
future, you’re being taught wrong. If you are being taught about a secret rapture, you are being taught wrong.
Time is not running out, it is out!
"The time has come for judging the dead." Rev. 11:18. We are living the last months of earth’s history. Are you ready for your probation to close? Are you ready to meet your Creator face to face? Have you lived up to His perfect, righteous law of love? If not, are you ready to surrender your life to Him Who loves you and gave Himself for you?
As with Noah’s ark, so today. Many people are attempting to build their own "ark". Many are trying to do it their way. Look at all these churches and buildings that are being built. But they won’t save you. Stop building churches!! No time for that. You will sink and burn with them. God’s way is not for buildings of beauty, but characters of perfection. Characters that represent the perfect, righteous, sinless life of Jesus. Stop trying to build your own "ark" and get on board the one that Jesus says to get into.