At this writing, strong sustained North winds have begun to buffet my windows. At the risk of sounding like Mary Poppins I believe that the wind has changed! I am sure those shifting winds and building clouds are the signal that Indian Summer is being ushered out and change is headed my way! In much the same way, I see the approaching prophetic clouds indicating our spiritual Indian Summer may be soon drawing to an close.
The other day, an old school friend of mine, David, posted this little thing on Facebook that said simply: Yeshua is Beautiful! I hadn’t known that he was a Messianic Jew and that post sparked something in my heart when I read it! Yeshua is the Anointed Messiah and He is beautiful! He is coming back! We shouldn’t quake in fear as we begin to see crazy stuff happening around us in the world. We should be so excited, and joyful as we recognize each of these Prophetic signs. Our outlook should have the same anticipatory thrill as a child’s countdown for Christmas morning.
Rejoicing may seem an odd response to disaster or persecution. We can’t ignore the inevitability of coming hard times. However, thankfully, there IS an exit strategy!
There will be a rapture, a snatching up, of His believers and we need to be ready! We need to make sure that others are ready and waiting as well. After that, things will get extremely ugly as the Antichrist has a temporary free-for-all. At the end of that future, 7 year Shemitah cycle, Jesus is then coming back as the King of Kings. There will be a judgment reckoning. He will deal with Satan, and set up his earthly kingdom. The Bible is true and timely and we need to get comfortable and wrap our heads around ALL of it.
We, the modern church, seem really adept at making sure folks are saved, yet, to the devil’s delight we, place much less time and importance on the rest. Consequently, we are setting up our congregations, friends, co-workers and children as sitting ducks. Set loose in dangerous waters they are armed with only half of a great message and woefully incomplete armor. Rather like taking a knife to a gunfight, we have rejected the importance of providing the big guns to our valuable recruits . The howitzer cannon of the Holy Spirit, and necessary powerful munitions of gifts has been set to the curb as old fashioned.
Thus setting the stage for a catastrophic domino effect to ensue even before adding to this mix, faulty or limited teaching on End Time prophecy, the reality of hell, as well as, the inevitable increase of demonic activity in these last days. It is foolhardy, not to mention, dangerous in the extreme! Soldiers not well versed in truth are left vulnerable where they needn’t be!
Focusing only on selective or partial Truth is actually deception placing our friends, families and churches at risk of being led astray because they are not grounded in the whole truth of what lies ahead. If we only serve those within our sphere of influence in a” happy church”, wiffle-waffley, politically-correct manner then we leave those we care for in darkness and may be consigning them to hell. Only Satan wins when we abdicate our responsibility to disciple new believers in the battle strategies of spiritual warfare. Deep, meaty teaching and Spirit-filled living should not be optional or considered fringe faith.
If I never share with my friends and readers this scriptural pattern of walking in Holy Spirit power and being properly and fully armored for their continuous and very real, supernatural battle; Then am I not, as a teacher, writer, parent or friend, partially responsible for their failure to remain standing on the battlefield, and flourish in their Christian life?
I recently had a pastor tell me that he really wasn’t very interested in End Times Prophecy. I hope what he was trying to verbalize was, no matter what the “time”, his work was clear-cut and he would keep on telling people of the Love of Christ. I believe that he will. Yet, something in my heart retreated at his words and attitude. It is not coincidental that Revelation 19:10 connects worship to Prophecy. John is told that the testimony of Jesus is the Spirit of Prophecy! Prophecy then, is not only a tangible pile of useful scriptures but also lives as spirit. Somehow, the Holy Spirit joyfully magnifies our words as we share the Testimony of Messiah. Our verbal acknowledgement of the truth of Jesus’ prophetic identity, what He has done in our own lives and our communication that He is slated to return, pleasingly connects us to the throne of God as sacrificial worship! Proclaim it! He is who he said He is and He’s going to do what He said he was going to do. In an crazy, mixed up, hell-bound world I can take His testimony to the bank!
We need to establish in our minds right now, that whenever or how these hard, prophesied things universally begin to happen, these circumstances do not mean that God doesn’t exist or that He doesn’t love you. With knowledge aforethought, we need to reconcile that we will not become offended and turn from our faith if we begin to see that our pastors, teachers or Grand parents haven’t highlighted appropriate scriptural evidence showing we would endure hard things. From the beginning, His prophetic Love Letters have been there waiting. Isn’t it our own fault if we let others mislead us without searching for ourselves and rightly dividing the Word of Truth? Before trouble hits we need to mend these gaping holes through prayer, studying and knowing beyond a shadow of doubt that our foundations are sure and strong.
Hazy as it may seem now, Daniel 12:4 assures us that when it’s time, knowledge will increase concerning prophetic passages. I am praying, and hoping that you are too, for increased knowledge and wide-open spiritual eyes of understanding as days get shorter. We can be optimistic that the rapture will occur prior to any tough times but we don’thonestly know exactly how bad things will be nor exactly how long we will have to remain working before the Lord comes back for his Bride.
Daniel 11 and Matthew 24:15 tell us that the prophetic final 7 years begins as a Peace Treaty is signed and confirmed with Israel. The Great Tribulation doesn’t begin until 3 and a half years into this 7 year period, when the antichrist stands in the rebuilt temple in Jerusalem and proclaims himself to be god. Our job is to prayerfully stand in the gap praying for our families, friends and nation. My calling is to continue to teach it all, to plant and feed those Gospel seeds, teach repentance and share the incredible love of Christ for as long as I am able.
Prior to this time, Jesus described in Matthew 24 that there would be a series of volatile problems. This stage is metaphorically compared and labeled “the Beginning of Sorrows” or labor pains. As we know, contractions start far apart, barely noticeable, then gradually build in frequency, intensity and duration. Matthew 24 outlines in a straight forward way, the disciple’s requested signs signaling Jesus’ promised return. These, famines, earthquakes, diseases and wars are just the starting gun by which to assess his timetable.
That should sober us up. I will say once again that Christians need to be like Boy Scouts, well-prepared for anything! In turbulent times I want to be helping others and fulfilling my calling, not running around, looking in desperation for drinking water or a book of matches.
I recently had some folks ask me, quite sincerely, why I was so focused on these prophetic issues and all that may imply. Wasn’t my calling as a Christian the same, regardless, to lead people to Christ? Of course it is! However, in the back of my mind I carry Matthew 13, the haunting parable of the Sower and the Seeds. This cautionary tale tells me that my fears, as stated in this post, are not overstated nor imaginary. Who, in their right mind does not want to avoid the terrible option of eternal hell- fire? My goal, and the purpose of my spiritual gift, is the necessary development of deep healthy roots,(including our Hebrew roots!) and nurturing vulnerable seedlings (no matter how long they have known Jesus) to withstand the scorching circumstantial sun, ravages of birds (demonic) and the choking weeds of life, so that they will live long enough to produce fruit of their own.
I have watched too many loved ones fall and die on the spiritual battlefield! Therefore, I have felt the need to sharpen my sword and hone my message from only the “Yes, Jesus loves you” story to the more accurate,
” Jesus loves you, He’s coming soon- are you totally ready for that eventuality!” message. It ought to be the same message, but I am finding that, frequently, it is not. My objective and yours needs to be: To share ALL the Good News of Christ with anyone who is still breathing.
However, just as my Christmas shopping becomes much more focused the closer we come to December 25th; So, too, do my spiritual End Times priorities when I realize how short an amount of time is left on the Biblical Calendar!
These are very exciting times!