Monday, September 29, 2008

Signs of the Times

Though the Rapture is imminent (can happen at any time) Jesus himself spoke of signs of the times we should be aware of as members of the church, signs that will precede His return.

I should note here that there are actually two returns of Christ. The first is when He'll come in the air to gather up the church age saints (who alone will see Him) and return with them to heaven. The second is a bodily, feet on the ground return to Jerusalem when everyone will see Him as He arrives to deliver Israel from the enemy nations that have gathered to destroy it. Nations like the European Union, Russia, China, and the Arab states like Iran, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, etc.

Since there are only seven years between the first return (or rapture) and the second, the signs of the times can be applied in some measure to both, since we can assume that many of those signs will occur on a lesser basis prior to the beginning of the seven years.

Here are some of those signs:

Israel's rebirth as a nation (Mat 24:32,33)

A decline in morality (2 Ti 3:1-4)

An increase in violence, ethnic wars, hot wars, cold wars (Mt 24:6-8)

An increase in famines, earthquakes, natural disasters (Mt 24: 6 - 8)

An explosion of travel, knowledge and education (Dan 12:4)

An explosion of cults and the occult (Mt 24:5)

The movement toward a one world government (Dan 7 - 12)

An increase in the apostacy of the church (2 Th 2:3)

There are more, but just these few I think are indicative that we are indeed in the end times. I've set all this down because I found a video I want to share that I think has more impact if you view it from the the standpoint of dispensations and these signs of the times.

By the way, the US does not figure in prophecy at all, most likely because, despite all our faults, a large number of us are believers in Christ who will disappear in the Rapture. Probably a lot of us are soldiers, sailors, police and even political leaders, the loss of which will have a dire effect on the nation's ability to protect itself, both against enemies within and without.

Besides, the United States was founded by Christians as a nation designed to protect the freedom to worship Christ in accordance with one's beliefs in what the Bible said. The other freedoms came along with that one. From our inception we have been what is called a client nation to God, maintaining the freedom to worship whatever god or creed one chooses, the freedom to speak, the freedom to evangelize. We send out more missionaries than any other nation on the globe. We provide more aid to the poor and suffering than any other nation, too. We've provided a haven for the Jews, and have defended Israel as a nation. We are in a sense the ultimate church age nation. When the church is removed, I believe the United States will for all intents and purposes cease to exist.

And that video? I'll post it tomorrow.