Why We May Be In The End Times
Welcome back! Or, if you’re just joining – we’ve been taking a look at the question: Are we in The End Times? Please scroll around and click on my blogs for May, early June, and late June to get caught up if you’ve missed one. We have two more sessions to go! Today we’ll take a close look at the reasons why these possibly ARE The End Times that we are experiencing now. It could be today that Jesus comes back for his people. Or it could be 100 years from now. The Bible clearly states “No one knows the day or hour when these things will happen, not even the angels in heaven or the Son himself. Only the Father knows.” (Matthew 24: 36) However, The Bible clearly shares with us in advance what some of signs will be right before Jesus’s return. Similar to when the weather in Texas stops being in the triple digits and finally starts to get cooler in November and December – we know that the winter season is about to occur (thankfully). And practically speaking – The End Times have to happen sometime in history. Why couldn’t we be the generation experiences it? Here are three reasons why we might be in that “season” of The End Times:
- Jesus warned about some obvious clues we would observe and they would increase in intensity. If you have the time please read the entire chapter of Matthew 24. The scene starts with Jesus sitting privately on the Mount of Olives. His close followers boldly approach him and bluntly ask: “Tell us, when will all this happen (the destruction of the Temple buildings they just were admiring)? What will signal your return and the end of the world?” (Matthew 24: 3)
Jesus told them, “Don’t let anyone deceive you, for many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am the Messiah.’ They will deceive many. And you will hear of wars and threats of wars, but don’t panic. Yes, these things must take place, but the end won’t follow immediately. Nation will go to war against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in many parts of the world. But all this is only the first of birth pains, with more to come (Matthew 24: 4 – 8).
A quick glance at the news in July of 2022 reveals all of these: Deception regarding truth, war with Russia and threats of other nations, local and worldwide segmentation between people groups, global food shortages, droughts, and earthquakes all over the world. With birth pains – they increase in intensity until there is the point of no return and the baby is here. The question then arises: How soon until the baby comes???
2. The apostle Paul warned how the behavior of people is going to grow exceedingly worse. When writing to his apprentice Timothy – Paul gave an eerily detailed snapshot about how mankind’s behavior and character would look: You should know this, Timothy, that in the last days there will be very difficult times. For people will love only themselves and their money. They will be boastful and proud, scoffing at God, disobedient to their parents, and ungrateful. They will consider nothing sacred. They will be unloving and unforgiving; they will slander others and have no self-control. They will be cruel and hate what is good. They will betray their friends, be reckless, be puffed with pride, and love pleasure rather than God (2 Timothy 3: 1 – 4).
Once again – a quick glance at any news source and Paul’s writing sounds like what is going on all over the world. The argument can be made: Yes, but people have always acted that way. True, but how much worse is can it get and how much higher of an intensity level can there be with the violence, shootings, anger, rebellion against authorities, selfishness, greed, political division, and an anti-God worldview that we are witnessing on a global scale?
3. Israel is reestablished as a nation of influence and power. Back in AD 70, Jerusalem was destroyed by The Romans and the Jewish people were scattered all throughout the world. After approximately 1800 years – there were almost no Jewish people living in Israel. However, looking at The Bible – every Old Testament prophet except Jonah predicted that Israel would become a nation again and that the Jewish people from around the world would return to their ancient homeland. These key prophetic texts all necessarily require Israel to exist as a nation: Ezekiel 38, Daniel 9, Matthew 24, Mark 13, Luke 21, and several chapters in Revelation. The reestablishment of the nation of Israel occurred on May 14, 1948, and was an undeniable fulfillment of prophecy. Currently, Israel has a strong military, financial prosperity, and natural resources for energy use and distribution. If Israel isn’t reestablished – then The Bible has errors and can’t be trusted as the authoritative word of God.
Finally, for the third time in this blog – take a look at the news. See how often Israel is in the headlines. Google sometime how many countries have weapons specifically pointed and targeted towards this tiny nation. Why does there seem to always be unrest in Israel with those that surround it? First, God made an everlasting covenant with Abraham way back in Genesis 15 that these would be His special people, He would provide a land for them, and He would never completely abandon them. Second, The Devil knows of this plan – so he wants to do everything in his power to destroy Israel and their people before his time is up.
Phew! I know that was pretty heavy stuff. We can feel uncertain and scared. Fear of the unknown is a powerful force. It’s easy to experience angst about the future. Kind of a gloom and doom message.
This leads back to something I wrote about in the first of this series. We don’t have to live in fear now or wonder about where we will spend eternity. Don’t put off this decision. Tomorrow is not guaranteed. Here is a review from the first session:
How do I know if I’m going to Heaven? The book of Revelation (and many other books of the Bible) talk about an eternal life and an eternal home called Heaven. Not to be blunt – but Revelation (and other books of the Bible) also talk about an eternity in a destination called Hell. To assure your citizenship in Heaven – here is what the Bible says we can do right now:
- Admit that we are sinners (that we have done wrong, evil, rejected God’s way for our lives). For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23).
- Accept that Jesus died and rose from the dead for our sins. And yet while we were still sinners Christ died for us (Romans 5:8).
- Ask for Jesus to come into our lives by His Spirit. For God so loved the world that he gave his only son that whoever believes (trusts in, clings to, relies upon) in him will have eternal life (John 3:16). If we confess that Jesus is Lord and believe in our hearts that God raised him from the dead we will be saved (Romans 10:9).
- Allow Jesus through His Holy Spirit to lead you day by day. Jesus said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” (John 8:12)
Four steps: Admit – Accept – Ask – Allow. If you haven’t already taken care of this step in your life – say a basic prayer based on the 4 points above and get things right between you and God through his son Jesus Christ. That way, if we are in The End Times – you have absolutely nothing to be fearful of!
Conclusion: One final thought. When writing about The End Times, the apostle Paul shared this message with a group of believers that were young in their faith:
. . . we who are still alive and remain on the earth will be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord forever. So encourage each other with these words (1 Thessalonians 4: 17, 18).
One of Paul’s friend’s named Titus wrote this concerning The End Times:
. . . looking forward to that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Savior Jesus Christ (Titus 2:13).
Wait a minute – if it is a gloom and doom message, why would Paul say to “encourage each other”? If it is going to be cataclysmic chaos and apocalyptic destruction, why would Titus say to “look forward to that blessed hope?” I’m glad you asked! That will be our final message in this series next blog – How to be filled with hope and joy instead of fear and anxiety if we are in The End Times.
See you then!