Believers in Jesus Christ, in terms of the majority, don’t recognize the crucial prophetic times in which this generation finds itself. To prove this, just ask almost anyone you know –outside of the very few Christians of your acquaintance who might consider prophetic issues– and watch the blank stares, the smiles, with accompanying gesticulations that indicate they don’t worry, or even think about these things. Observe, while they quickly go onto other subjects, like “what’s for dinner,” “who’s getting married,” “who’s getting a divorce,” “who’s living with whom,” or a thousand and one other more generationally appropriate topics –in their view—than where we are at present on God’s prophetic timeline.
When the Christian who is truly a student of what God has to say about things to come stops to analyze the flood of prophecy-laden matters deluging this generation, he or she quickly realizes that we are at the very door that will open into the tribulation. But, he or she knows – if prayerfully diligent in studying God’s prophetic Word, (i.e., is led by the Holy Spirit to truth) and is thus discerning in analyzing world conditions– that another door is about to swing open. That is the door that leads through the fabric of space and time. The door that will be opened by Jesus Christ. As a matter of fact, Jesus Christ IS that door! After all, He said”…I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh to the Father, but by me” (John 14:6).
And, the things for the discerning Christian to consider are staggering in numbers, and in prophetic relevance. Of these many things of prophetic import we could think upon, none is more glaring at this moment –in my view—than signals of Christ’s coming again wrapped up in the title of this commentary article: “Endtime Perplexity.”
The prophecy was given by Jesus in His Olivet Discourse, as recorded in the following:
“And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring” (Lk. 21:25).
Review, for just a moment, the dynamics shaping up endtime world conditions while this generation rages toward Daniel’s 70th week –the seven years of tribulation, when God’s wrath will begin falling upon incorrigibly rebellious mankind.
Israel is at the very center of the last-time perplexity, just as Jesus and the Old and New Testament prophets foretold. Think of it! Everything of great significance, so far as world conditions are concerned, points right back at Israel!
1) Islamist Jihadists are in control of the Palestinian drive for statehood. Muslim terrorists are on record, determined to expunge Israel from the region. These are blood-vowed to kill every Jew they find.
2) Iran’s leadership is threatening to develop (might already have) the ability to produce nuclear weapons. The purpose is to annihilate Israel –and any other nation that gets in Iran’s path.
3) Islamic hate-filled doctrinal differences perplex American military planners in trying to deal with the Syrian war where the Obama administration is on the side of the Muslim Brotherhood, which are bad actors at least the equivalent of Basher Al-Assad’s brutal regime. The seas and waves of humanity are indeed “roaring.”
4) Islamic fascist-like, rage-filled terrorists on a world-wide basis, incite masses to attack and destroy even their own possessions in Europe and other places. Christ’s words “nation (ethnos –or ethnic entities) shall rise against nation…” have been fulfilled to some extent in our time.
Certainly, there can be no doubt that this is happening en masse across the world. Again, for most who are leaders of nations represented in the U.N., Israel is the chief reason for troubles everywhere on earth. Anyone who supports Israel in any fashion comes under the radical Islamic threat of sword applied to the neck. Then there is the cry for “peace and safety.” But there is total disregard for the Prince of Peace, Jesus Christ. At the risk of being castigated as “touching the anointed,” I must say that even the major players among pastors and leaders of churches in this Laodicean era have a P.E.A.C.E. plan for saving the world from perplexity.
It won’t work, of course. Peace –even if used in clever, marketing terms of acronym—–such as that mentioned above issued by Rick Warren some years ago–will fail. Only the Prince of Peace, and His godly, Heaven-sent peace will bring the raging seas of humanity under control, like He did the storm-driven waters on the Sea of Galilee those millennia ago.
Christians, it is past time to awake from the slumber under which the Church of Jesus Christ has –for the most part— been put, since allowing Satan and his minions to pull their deception over the spiritual eyes of many individual believers. We are at that point–in attitude–at the end of the age, about which Jesus forewarned:
“Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.” (Matt. 24:44).
To me, this is near the top among the most foreshadowing of the perplexities about which our Lord prophesied: the question of why Christians will not awake in this endtime era, and look around at all that points directly at the truth that we are, as a generation of earth dwellers, on the very cusp of the apocalypse, of tribulation.
This should make us, rather than be filled with only thoughts of earthly things, busily engaged in activities spiritually ripe with great anticipation of the “blessed hope” of Titus 2:13. He could come at any second, and all of the things of this fallen world instantly will no longer matter to the Christian of the Church Age. We will stand before Him, and see Him face to face, and give account for our attitude toward Him, and activities for Him, when we were in this life back on Planet Earth.
Another insightful article Terry! Thanks!
My husband and I were just talking about this very issue tonight at Jimmys bar in Herndon, VA. He has all kinds of apostate theories and he refuses to open his eyes to the truth. I’m sending this to him as a very valid point of reference. I’ve tried to get him to read the Bible but he won’t. He says he already knows what’s in it……
Jesus is coming soon! It would be helpful if a distinction between the 2nd coming and the rapture (pre, mid, pre-wrath or post) were more clearly connected to Scripture used. For instance, many scholars believe Math 24 is in reference to the 2nd coming. If in fact the pre-tribbers are correct, this passage, while still teaching us to watch and know the times, may be most instructive to those during the trib period. Please read this as more of a question than a dogmatic statement. Maybe I am confused.
The Matthew 24:44 scripture must, in my view, be a Rapture reference, because those believers (the Tribulation saints) who read scripture about the Lord’s Return during the Tribulation era (Daniel’s seventieth week) will be able to pinpoint the exact day of Christ’s Descent during Armageddon (Rev. 19:11) But, we are told in v 44 that we must be ready, for in a time we aren’t thinking about, Christ will come for us. –A totally unknown day.
A number of passages give the exact number of days of the Second Advent from certain points during the 7 year period. I haven’t space to list those here, but suggest you look them up in Revelation.
The Rapture is an unknown time. Paul calls it a “mystery” in 1 Corinthians chapter 15. It is sudden, and unannounced, which Jesus Himself called like a thief in the night breaking in upon an unsuspecting world.
The implication can be nothing short of pointing to a Pre-Trib Rapture, because we are promised that we will be kept from the time of testing or Tribulation(Rev 3: 10). The Tribulation –God’s Judgment, His Wrath– is covered, then, from chapter 4 verse 1 when John is told to Come up hither! –to when Jesus breaks through the darkness of Planet Earth . (Rev 19: 11)
Excellent article, Terry and Amen.