Jesus said, “Notice the trees. When the leaves come out, you know without being told that summer is near. In the same way, when you see the events taking place that I am describing, you can be just as sure that the Kingdom of God is at hand.”
What I used to find alarming, but now see as amusing is this. As it becomes clearer that what the Bible says will happen in the latter days of history is actually coming true in our time, the louder and more stridently do secularists and naturalists proclaim that “This bronze age book is out of date and irrelevant to our futures.”
For me, this most astounding achievement begins with the rise of Israel as a Nation and the returning of its people to a homeland ‘forever’ destroyed in 70AD. Nowhere at any time has this ever happened to any other Nation or people, much less one about which its destruction and renewal was foretold 1,000's of years in advance.
Ezekiel - 37:21 (Written 597 years before the birth of Christ) - For the Lord God says, “I am gathering the people of Israel from among the nations and bringing them home [literally] from around the world to their own homeland, to unify them into one nation.”
Ezekiel 38:12 - “I will go to those once desolate cities that are now filled with people again, those who have returned from all the nations, and the whole earth revolves around them. This will happen in the distant future, in the latter years of history. The state of Israel now 60 years old, contains people who have come from 100 different countries, speaking 60 different languages and the trek homeward continues to this day.
Zechariah 12:2,3,7, & 9 (Written 520 years before the birth of Christ) - I will make Jerusalem and Judah like a cup of poison to all the nearby nations that send their armies to surround her. Jerusalem will be a heavy stone burdening the world and though all the nations of the world unite in an attempt to move her, they will all be crushed. For my plan is to destroy all nations that come against Jerusalem.
Zechariah 2: 4 & 7 - Jerusalem will some day be so full of people she won’t have room enough for all. I scattered you to the winds, but I will bring you back again.
This is the whole problem with Palestine and Israel right now. There is not enough room for all of the Jews coming home and they are building settlements in Palestinian territory.
. Jesus went on to warn those who are willing to listen that as history winds down, we can expect to see a rise in conflict as “Nation will rise against nation.” Our planet has not been without conflict since the Second World War, supposedly ‘the war to end all wars.’
. “There will be great earthquakes and famines in many lands and epidemics all over the world.” I read in National Geographic a few years back that there are 100 times more earthquakes today than there were 100 years ago. Some will probably say, There really aren’t more famines or wars or earthquakes. We’re just hearing about them more.
. About Christians, Jesus foretold, “The whole world will hate you because you are mine.” I’ll repeat the now well known statistic one more time, More Christians have been killed for their faith in Jesus in the twentieth century than in all the previous centuries combined. The pace and scope of naturalist intolerance is growing exponentially as those who hate God are gaining power and influence throughout the world.
. For those attending to Global Warming, Jesus prophesied, “Nations will be in turmoil, perplexed by the roaring seas and strange tides. The courage of many people will falter because of the fearful fate they see coming upon the earth.” Jesus also talks about the earth winding down like “a worn out peace of clothing.” To say that this isn’t happening would make you a pariah and an outcast on virtually any college campus around the world. Yet to agree with it is agree that the Bible is bang on in its prophetic accuracy, as it has always been.
. First time in history that the human race has the power to destroy itself
Matthew 24:21 - Unless those days are shortened, all mankind will perish. But they will be shortened for the sake of God’s chosen people.
. First time in history that the communication and data processing systems are available to control the world with one government; economically, politically and militarily.
Revelation 13:17 - No one could get a job or even buy in any store without the permit of that mark. He will rule over all nations and language groups throughout the world.
.Coming of the Apostate Church - I find this one most humorous because this is the one thing that naturalists hate most - a Hypocritical Church. Yet that very thing was prophesied by Jesus as being a clear sign that the end was near. Now, to be honest, all of us are hypocrites to one degree or another. Because of that there have always been hypocrites in the Church, as elsewhere. By never before have so many Church leaders, who are followed by so many Biblically ignorant people who attend their churches, systematically taught principles that are diametrically opposed to the teachings of Jesus.
Matthew 7:21 - Jesus said, “Not all who sound religious are really Godly people. They refer to me as Lord, but still won’t get into heaven. For the decisive question is whether they obey Me.”
Matthew 15:7 - You hypocrites, well did Isaiah prophesy of you. These people say they honour me, but their hearts are far from me. Their worship is worthless, for they teach their man-made laws instead of those from God.
Luke 11:52 - Woe to you experts in religion. For you hide the truth from the people. You won’t accept it for yourselves and you prevent others from having a chance to believe it.
Romans 1:21,22 &25 - After awhile they began to think up silly ideas of what God was like and what He wanted them to do. Claiming themselves to be wise without God they became utter fools instead. Instead of believing what they knew was the truth about God they deliberately chose to believe lies.
Philippians 3:18,19 - There are many who walk along the Christian road who are really enemies of the cross of Christ. They are proud of what they should be ashamed of, and all they think about is life here on earth.
1 Timothy 4:1,2 - But the Holy Spirit tells us clearly that in the last times some in the church will turn away from Christ and become eager followers of teachers with devil inspired ideas.
2 Timothy 4:3,4 - There is going to come a time when people won’t listen to the truth, but will go around looking for teachers who will tell them just what they want to hear. They won’t listen to what the Bible says, but will blithely follow their own misguided ideas.
2 Peter 2:1-3 - There will be false teachers among you. They will cleverly tell their lies about God. Many will follow their evil teaching that there is nothing wrong with sexual sin. Because of them, Christ and His way will be laughed at.
Hosea 4:1-6 &9 - There is no faithfulness, no kindness, no knowledge of God in your land. You swear and lie and kill and steal and commit adultery. There is one murder after another. That is why your land is not producing. It is filled with sadness and all living things grow sick and die. The animals and birds and even the fish begin to disappear. Don’t point your finger at someone else and try to pass the blame. Look priest, I’m pointing My finger at you. As a sentence for your crimes, you priests will stumble in broad daylight as well as in the night because the people don’t know me, and it is all your fault you priests, for you yourselves refuse to know me. Like priests, like people. Because the priests are wicked the people are too.
Amazing, isn’t it? We can read all the other signs of nature and predict with a good degree of certainty what will happen next. But when we are exposed to signs about our future, more than that, signs that are just as clear about our eternity, we turn away and deny that these signs possess any necessary or urgent information. Yet Jesus warned us, “So when you see these things begin to happen, know that your salvation is near. Don’t let my sudden coming catch you unawares; don’t let me find you living in careless ease, carousing and drinking and occupied with the problems of this life, like all the rest of the world.”
So I wonder. What will you do with this information? Turn your allegiance toward God? Or play the fool?