Are the end-times really upon us?
The Bible gives a specific time and date to the beginning of the end-times - even down to the hour!
Many Christians are still waiting for the end-times to begin. Even more strain their eyes and minds looking for the ‘signs of the times’ so they can ready themselves for the ‘rapture’, which they believe will happen before the devastating ‘seven-year tribulation’ begins. But then, there are those who believe the end-times are already beginning.
What do you think? Where do you stand?
There are a few Scriptures which play havoc with all the above commonly believed end-time theologies. These Scriptures are clearly written and easy to understand. Their message is so blunt it can leave no doubt about the beginning of the end-times, otherwise known as ‘the last days’.
1. Jesus’ appearance on the earth signalled the beginning of the last days.
In the past, God spoke to our ancestors through the prophets, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom also he created the universe. (Heb.1:1-2)
He was chosen before the creation of the world but was revealed in these last times for your sake. (1 Ptr.1:20)
Jesus himself was sent by God to usher in the last days. Prior to the last days God spoke through prophets, but in these last days he has spoken through his Son. This is why Christ wanted to quickly return to his Father after his resurrection, for part of the last days promise was the sending of the Spirit.
2. On the day of Pentecost, at 9 0’clock in the morning, the Apostle Peter confirmed the last days had begun.
This is what was spoken by the prophet Joel: “In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people; your sons and daughters will prophesy...even on my menservants and maidservants I will pour out my Spirit in those days...” (Acts 2:16-18)
Prior to the last days, the Spirit of God only came 'upon' individuals, he never lived 'within' them. This one of the great differences between the former rain and the latter rain, the past days and the last days, the Old Covenant and the New Covenant.
3. A mighty rushing wind and fire, which traditionally accompanied the coming of the Spirit of God, were the ‘signs’ given by God that the last days had begun.
New Testament: Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from Heaven...and fire separated into what looked like tongues and came to rest on each of them...and they were all filled with the Spirit and began speaking in other tongues. (Acts 2:2-3)
Old Testament: I saw a windstorm coming out of the north an immense cloud with flashing lightning and surrounded by brilliant light. In the fire were four living creatures...Their appearance was like burning coals of fire or like torches...wherever the Spirit would go, they would go...(Ez.1:4-13)
The outpouring of the Spirit of Christ, ushered in by the physical signs of wind and fire, was the ultimate proof, given by God, to show the last days had begun. This is past tense!
This means no Christian today should be ‘waiting for the last days to begin’, as some false teachers tell us, simply because Jesus himself ushered in the last days, and poured out his Spirit as confirmation the last days had begun.
Christians have been living in the last days for nearly 2000 years!
The last days were marked in Scripture as the beginning of a time of great blessing through the Spirit and great distress through sin; a time that would bear the name ‘Great Tribulation’.
That is exactly what the glorious Book of Revelation explains from start to finish; how the whole concept of final judgment/tribulation will play out in favour of the redeemed.
We are favoured because Christ died to save us from personal judgment and because he sent his Spirit to protect us from the distress of the punishment of God for sin that will still fall on the rest of the world; on those who are not protected by Christ.
God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in times of tribulation (trouble). (Ps.46:1)
WHAT DOES THE WORD 'TRIBULATION' MEAN? Tribulation is translated in most Bibles as 'trouble'. Strong’s Concordance describes the root word of tribulation as meaning, to press, squeeze or afflict. In other words 'tribulation' literally means the pressure of being squeezed by affliction, which these days we call 'stress' or 'trouble'.
There is no protection from ‘tribulation’ except the blood of Christ!
This is why it is so important for Christians to share the ‘good news’ about Christ’s salvation from judgment/tribulation. The world needs to hear the Gospel!
Waiting for the end-times, or last days, to begin stops us from going into the world with the message of salvation. However, when the false notion of a future ‘last days’ is removed, we are free to stand with the only 'end-times leader' God has appointed, Jesus Christ.
We are free to follow our leader and obey his Commission to preach the gospel of salvation to a tribulation affected world.
An excerpt from REVELATION, Isn't it about Jesus? © Monica Bennett-Ryan
False teachers have muddied the truth of Revelation, adding things which are just not there, thereby changing its message.
Not only are there no signs to seek, there is no mention anywhere in the Book of Revelation of a human Antichrist world ruler, a one-world government, an abomination sitting in a rebuilt temple in Jerusalem, a rapture, or any unbridled Satanic havoc. These are merely a smokescreen to hide the truth!
Revelation is about Christ! It clearly explains who brings the judgments of God to the earth (not Satan); how the redeemed are protected (from God's judgment), who our real enemy is (not Satan's Antichrist), and who will rule the nations in the last days (again, not Satan!)