End of the World
v. 3b “when is the end of the world?”
v. 6 “wars and rumours of wars”
This has happened for centuries, but the end is not yet.
v. 7 “nation against nation” ie: Russia vs. Ukraine
“kingdom against kingdom” ie: world war
There’s more famine today that ever in history, and this war has just shut down the bread basket for much of the world.
Diseases with no cure, with mutating strands that spread and can affect the entire globe. ie: Coronavirus
With increasing frequency and intensity.
As always, Jesus gives a masterful illustration, using labor pains.
To bring a child into the world requires a delivery to take place, beginning with the earliest labor pains. I’m no expert at labor, but I’ve seen it happen a few times! I’ve held my wife’s hand and seen her face morph into anguish as her eyes turn to glare at me and she begins to dig her nails into my palm… “You did this to me!”
“Doctor, I believe labor has commenced!”
Jesus said that labor pains precede the end times, indicating the earth will soon ‘deliver.’
v. 8 ‘sorrows’ = ‘birth pangs’ ... labor pains start low and they increase in intensity as they continue. They also start slow and increase in frequency. So it is w/ the signs of the times, which are many!
Jesus has finally gotten it across to the disciples that He’s not in Jerusalem this time to set up His kingdom, and that He will be going away and returning for the end of the world.
v. 1 The Temple in Jerusalem was an amazing configuration of buildings, made largely of white polished marble. It was still under construction at this time, not to be completed until A.D. 64. Some of the stones that made up the temple were up to 40’ x 20’ x 12’.
v. 2 Jesus walked out of the temple for the last time, never to return to it again. His prophecy about its demise was astounding to His disciples, but it came to pass in A.D. 70 when the Roman General Titus surrounded Jerusalem and laid siege to it. He cut it off from the rest of the world [like Putin is doing right now] and eventually he breached the wall and gained access to the city. They demolished the city completely, with not one stone left upon another.
Mark tells us that Peter, James, John, and Andrew approached Jesus off to the side to ask Him these 3 questions found in v. 3...
Good men disagree on some of the interpretation of Jesus’ answers, from chronology to specific events. We won’t try to settle those fights, but to see the big picture of how the shadow of events to come are already cast across our day today, leading us to be warned that there is wrath soon to come to this world!
In the end there will be:
1. Spiritual Deception.
Deception runs rampant today, more than ever before, because of the explosion of technologically driven information and the absolute collapse of truth in media and corruption of the political spectrum. Big tech decides what they want the masses to believe and then push it while squelching out the real truth. Mankind is easily misled about our problems and what are the solutions.
The virus: Two years ago this week was our last ‘normal’ week, but now it turns out it didn’t have to be! There was much deception. No?
It was the surgeon general who said 2 years ago that masks won’t help so stop buying them. It was later proven to be deliberate misinformation [deception] so they could conserve for hospitals until more could be made.
Every doctor I spoke to then said it doesn’t matter anyway since viruses are much smaller than mask pores, and yet it wasn’t a month later that the CDC was told to recommend masking. Today they admit that masks won’t help a vast majority of people. It was a deception, it was sinister, and the pump is completely primed for other deceptions.
The word science is used more than ever, and now means less than ever. Paul warned Timothy of ‘science falsely so called’. As a result, most people today believe in evolution, though it’s at best a theory, and never proven by scientific method. It’s deception…a fairy tale for adults.
Most of the world now believes in global warming because of the same kind of deception. A baby in the womb isn’t yet alive, according to the science of some, and if it is born, you don’t necessarily know its gender just by looking at its parts!
Yes, the pump is primed for a great deception which is yet to come. When the rapture whisks away all believers as well as 100% of babies and young children, the remaining world will be totally prepared to believe any lie the talking heads put forth. Aliens? A new virus that makes you vanish? Technology that can ‘beam’ you away?
A strong spiritual deception will ensue and the world will buy it and then take the mark of the beast and follow the antichrist and like sheep will be led off the cliff to their deaths!
v. 4-5 A word of caution from the Lord that before the antichrist, the great deceiver, there will be others who do the same. I won’t name names because there are far too many in our lifetime who claim to be God, and many are gaining bigger and bigger followings.
Here’s a couple of things which are seeding mass deception today, besides politicians, big tech, and media...
1 Timothy 4:1
Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;
George Barna does Christian research using Gallup Polling methods, and every year his research shows how those who call themselves Christians move further and further from Bible truth.
-46% now say the devil is not real, just symbolic of evil
-All believe in heaven but nearly 2/3rd’s say there is no hell.
-Many deny the virgin birth, the inspiration of the Bible, and that Jesus could have lived completely sinless in this world.
There is a major movement to embrace signs and wonders, and the health and wealth gospel, and people are being conditioned to accept anything their leader says as long as he says God told it to him. It used to be that everyone gasped for breath when someone like Oral Roberts said a 900 foot Jesus appeared to him, or Kenneth Hagan said Jesus came to his bedroom and dictated a sermon to him verbatim. Do I believe Jesus appeared to these men? I believe Jesus is at the right hand of God just like the Bible says he is!
I don’t deny the existence of the spirit world...it is real and all around us, but all that glitters is not God! The Holy Spirit and angels are real, but they are not the only supernatural beings around us. The devil is real and his demons right along with him. It’s a huge deception going on all around us today, especially in the name of religion.
The antichrist we know will come with signs, wonders, and miracles, and all he needs are people who are conditioned to see that and say, “It must be of God!” We’re there already today.
We’ve already established that Satan is mixing error in with truth in the church, and he’s also mixing all churches together these days with the notion that we all must get together, lay aside our doctrine, and be one big happy family. [We’re all going to heaven, just taking different roads. We all believe in the same God even if we call Him by different names.]
If you want to talk about tearing down walls between churches, you’d better be talking about walls of racism or minor preferences, then I’m all for coming together. I’m not one to major on the minors and have all kinds of tests of fellowship. Secondary separation is a lot like Pharisee-ism to me. But on the other hand there are some essentials to true Biblical Christianity and when you tear those walls down you are in violation of Scripture which commands us not only to maintain such standards, but to separate from those who do not. In short, the ecumenical movement does far more harm than good in this world and is a greased slide toward the one world church coming during the Great Tribulation.
Spiritual deception is everywhere...not only in the church. It’s open season on Christians today, from the media to politics, to the pop culture of Hollyweird! And the general population already has bought into the lies of Secular Humanism, situational ethics, evolution, and New Age Philosophy. Our senses are dulled and deception is already at epidemic levels. The world is ready to believe the lies of the antichrist. The end is nearer than ever before!
2. National Disruption.
v. 6-7a War has always existed in this world. There will be no peace until the Prince of Peace returns and establishes it. The International Red Cross estimates over 100 million have been killed in wars since the beginning of the 20th C. But notice the phrase ‘rumours of wars’. What could this be? I believe it to be the cowardly militia known as global terrorism, which wears no uniform, has no flag, and strikes out at innocent civilians to inflict terror and fear. Imagine what it is like in many parts of the world when you cannot get on a bus or a subway w/out thinking about it possibly being blown up. Imagine eyeballing everyone around you in an overcoat, wondering if they are about to blow themselves up along w/ all of you standing near them! That’s rumours of war, where you cannot see it, but you know it’s out there...and don’t be surprised if it’s coming to a country you love or a city you now live in! I can’t be dogmatic about this, but it is at the very least troubling to not be able to find America in end times prophecy, when we are currently the most dominant nation in the world.
But rumours of wars also makes me think about the fear of another world war. Everyone is talking about the growing risk of WW3 because of the current conflict. Well I don’t know when WW3 will take place but the Bible says it will sometime, and that we should know the signs of the times!
America needs a major wake up call...something bigger than 9/11, or the virus. I don’t wish for it…but we need something to get our attention and cause a great awakening back to God! I can’t wait for some earth-shaking event, so instead I’ll just preach the truth and hope people will listen!
What the Bible describes is national disruption, which includes things like supply chain shortages, inflation, and gas prices. Let me know if anything like that starts to happen!
Apocalyptic fever is all around us, and a growing sense that doomsday may not be far off.
Spiritual deception, national disruption...
3. Physical Destruction.
Famines: The World Health Organization maintains today that 1/3rd of the world is well fed, 1/3rd is underfed, and 1/3rd is starving! 400 people die of starvation every...[hold on!]...every minute! The UN cannot keep up, charities cannot gain access to many stricken areas, no matter how much they want it, and beauty pageant contestants never quite seem to end world hunger...it grows worse and worse by the day!
Pestilences: This is an incurable disease. In the 1960s medical science was optimistic, stating that “we have solved forever the problem of infectious disease.” But because of the misuse and overuse of antibiotics there are now a record number of strains resistant to them. Add to that the emergence of engineered viruses cooked up in labs and you start to really understand how biological warfare may work. We hear of ‘bird flu’ and ‘mad cow’ disease and think it’s about animals but humans are dying in increasing numbers. The SARS scare a while back was also a coronavirus, and novel viruses demonstrate how despite medical technology and advancement, man is in God’s hands, not the President’s hands…not the doctor’s hands, and it’s the Great Physician we should be looking to!
Earthquakes: Increasing in frequency and intensity for the last century plus.
‘in divers places’ = strange, rare, unusual locations, conditions
You can see the Pacific Rim and how catastrophic earthquakes are more frequently there since 1900, but many major quakes inc. the 2004 Asian quake are not part of that rim! The next map shows just the most recent year. They are spreading out more and more every year!
The point is that the birth pangs are growing closer and closer together, and greater and greater in intensity! The whole earth is crying out, “Jesus is coming!”
Spiritual deception, national disruption, physical destruction...
How should we respond to all of this? Well, Jesus didn’t give these prophecies to excite the curious, but to exhort the consecrated. I know people who will drive hundreds of miles to prophecy conferences, and they love to study it and hear about it, but won’t let it change their habits, won’t come to church any more often because of it, and won’t live much differently in light of it! Christians: We should live differently because Jesus is coming. Or if you aren’t sure you are saved, there’s no better time to make sure, because Jesus is coming!
When Jesus comes there won’t be time to get saved or to get right! And He could return at any moment. “What shall be the signs of thy coming?” The signs of the times are all around us. The labor pains are a minute apart, the world is dilated to 10, but many so-called Christians seem to want a spiritual epidural to mask them from reality! We must wake up and get to work while there is time! The time is NOW, the altar is HERE, and Jesus is calling YOUR name!
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