Jesus Explains End Times Protocol, Pt 3

April 28, 2014 at 9:22 PM 5 comments

This chart outlines the birth pangs, which we will deal with individually

This chart outlines the birth pangs, which we will deal with individually

In our previous article – Jesus Explains End Times Protocol, Pt 2 – we discussed the very start of what Jesus described as the beginning of birth pangs. This included the Jewish idiom when “nation rises against nation, and kingdom against kingdom,” which we stated meant world war. WWI took place in 1914 and WWII began in 1939. These events gave birth to Zionism and ultimately the rebirth of Israel (1948) as a nation.

Jesus also noted that with world war would come terrible famines and earthquakes. We highlighted these subjects in our last article as well, showing the dramatic increase in both over time.

We next need to move onto the next several verses in Matthew 24, verses 9 – 14.

Then they will deliver you to tribulation, and will kill you, and you will be hated by all nations because of My name. 10 At that time many will fall away and will betray one another and hate one another. 11 Many false prophets will arise and will mislead many. 12 Because lawlessness is increased, most people’s love will grow cold. 13 But the one who endures to the end, he will be saved. 14 This gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all the nations, and then the end will come.

In these verses, Jesus is saying that as things get really terrible – leading up to and including the Tribulation – Jews and Christians will become the hated and the hunted. Jews and Christians represent the Judeo-Christian religion and as such, point to the Bible as the authoritative Word of God. The Bible contains God’s moral code. Though orthodox Jews do not accept Jesus as Messiah, the truth of Jesus as Messiah is found throughout the writings of the Old Testament. There will be many Jews who will come to a saving knowledge of Jesus as these terrible events ramp up and move the world toward the Tribulation and ultimately, the return of Jesus.

Because the same God is revealed in the Old and New Testaments, Satan hates us. He knows that in God’s Word lies the road to salvation. He will turn this world against Jews and Christians, at least those who are not enmeshed deeply within the system he created – Babylon.

It will be so bad that people thought to be good friends and even family members will betray one another to save their own skins. Jesus makes it clear that the world will hate followers of Jesus because they will be prompted to do so because of Satan’s hatred for Jesus Himself. It stands to reason that true Christians (those with whom the Spirit lives) will be targeted because Satan hates God.

Revelation 12 tends to summarize this as well. This entire chapter of Revelation sums up the plan of salvation beautifully. Note that the dragon (Satan) knew that the Messiah would be born and tried to kill him, but was thwarted. Eventually, the Lord will protect the Jewish remnant and because Satan will be unable to kill them, he will turn on Christians. “So the dragon was enraged with the woman, and went off to make war with the rest of her children, who keep the commandments of God and hold to the testimony of Jesus,” (Revelation 12:17).

Jesus says in Matthew 24:10 that many will fall away during this time. There is disagreement by commentators over what this means. Can a true Christian lose their salvation? Some think yes, while others (myself included) think no. If we look at the condition of the visible church today, it is in bad shape because there are three kinds of people who go to church. First, there are those who are the tares (Matthew 13) who have been deliberately planted by Satan to sow wickedness, error, and sin for the purpose of drawing people away from God. These people are not and never can be true Christians (wheat) because they are tares. Second, there are people who firmly believe they are authentic Christians, but may not be at all. They grew up in the church, they attended Sunday School classes, maybe even taught group studies, prayed, tithed, but never had a personal relationship with Jesus. We cannot tell their heart condition, but Jesus can and does. Third, there are the authentic Christians, people who earnestly love the Lord and endeavor to serve Him (“keep the commandments of God and hold to the testimony of Jesus”).

The first two groups of people will be among the people who fall away. They will see the attacks on Christians and will decide that it’s not worth the trouble, so they will distance themselves from true followers in order to be spared the world’s anger and hatred. They may even join in with the world in condemning those who love the Lord. The desire to save one’s life can be an overwhelming desire, pushing everything else to the side.

Notice the very next verse again mentions false prophets (v. 11). Jesus says that at the beginning of birth pangs, false christs and false prophets will deceive people. He says it again here and emphasizes that they will mislead many. There are false prophets alive now who preach and teach error. They lack humility. No one can tell them anything. They cannot be corrected. They are not open to constructive criticism. They are right and everyone else is wrong.

A false prophet is a person who prophesies and what he/she prophecies turns out to be wrong. Prophecies can mean simply teaching something or making a prediction, as in when the Lord will return. Once it turns out that these individuals are seen as wrong, that should be enough to make people stop listening to them. In the Old Testament, false prophets were taken outside the camp and stoned to death. I’m certainly not advocating that be done and there’s no need to do it either. However, they should be completely ignored because they have proven that they are not a prophet at all because what they prophesied or taught did not come true.

The world is filled with false prophets and many of them combine Christ-like teachings with New Age gobbledygook. Ultimately, what they teach are plain lies and should be ignored at all costs. People follow them though because their words are enticing and pleasing. The only sure way of not being taken in by false prophets and false christs is by knowing the truth as taught in Scripture. People who don’t study the Word do not know the Word and can be deceived.

Jesus also notes that lawlessness will increase. Even though statistically speaking, violent crime is down, that doesn’t mean it will stay down. But lawlessness is also an attitude that people develop. It is a complete disregard for the rule of law. Look at the amount of corruption that appears to be part of all levels of government in the US alone.

The end result of increasing lawlessness is that people’s hearts grow cold. Why? Because they stop caring about how breaking the law affects other people. Their focus is on themselves.

Jesus then says the one who endures to the end will be saved. I believe – based on the entirety of Scriptural teaching – that this does not mean that a person can lose their salvation. I am aware that some disagree. I believe it means that the elect will be saved because they will be unable to turn away from God. Remember, people who become authentic Christians are sealed with the Holy Spirit unto the day of redemption, (Ephesians 4). We are already seated with Christ in the heavenly realm (Ephesians 2). We are born again or born from above (John 3). How can we be “unborn” again? In other words, those who persevere unto the end do so because they are saved and the Spirit of the Lord lives within them strengthening them. Those who are not “born again” and who do not have the Spirit of the Living God within them will not be able to persevere. It is the Spirit of God within that separates the sheep from the goats.

Jesus finishes this section by stating that the Gospel message will be preached throughout the world and then will come the end. The end comes, by the way, when He physically returns. These few verses offer a synopsis of events leading up to the end.

The very next section in Matthew 24 speaks of something that is extremely important, so we dare not miss Jesus’ meaning. He refers to the Abomination that desolates and we will start with this in our next installment.

Part 1Part 2Part 3Part 4Part 5Part 6Part 7Part 8Part 9

Entry filed under: Religious - Christian - End Times, Religious - Christian - Prophecy, Religious - Christian - Theology, second coming.

Jesus Explains End Times Protocol, Pt 2 Jesus Explains End Times Protocol, Pt 4

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