This is our time to be tried. The
difference between all those other times and ours is that this is the “last
generation” before Christ’s return. The truth is, for those of us who know
what’s coming next, these are exciting days. Difficult to comprehend at times
yes, but exciting nonetheless. If we give some thought to what’s coming next,
and then pay close attention to observe the times and the signs, there will be
nothing surprising or terrifying about what follows.
“But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that
that day should overtake you as a thief. Ye are all the children of light, and
the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness.”
1 Thessalonians 5:4-5.
Apart from all that immorality, depravity, and greed which
certainly reigns supreme on planet earth these days are the last day’s events of
which Jesus tells His disciples will come. We are on a timeline in which those
symbolic birth pangs are occurring more frequently and with much more intensity.
But where on that timeline are we currently? Good question. It may help us to
define our current position on that timeline by viewing the recurring signs of
the past. When we do, we will be confronted with a huge difference in comparison
as we look at frequency and intensity. I’ll give three short examples regarding
these three observable phenomenon.
If we perform a simple web search on the United States
Geological Service website (www.usgs.gov)
we’ll find there a plethora of data concerning earthquakes past and present,
even predictions of future events. Interestingly we find that both the quantity
and severity of earthquakes have increased and are increasing daily. In my birth
year, which was 1951, there were zero earthquakes recorded on the day I was born
(August 24). I arbitrarily picked the year 2008 for a comparison and was floored
by the number of earthquakes recorded that year on my birthday. There were over
293 earthquakes in “diverse” places. Remember were looking at just one single
day’s earthquake occurrences. Now let’s take a look at the earthquakes for the
entire year of 1951. The total was 592 that year. Now let’s look at that
arbitrary year of 2008. Total earthquakes that year were 31,777 according to the
United States Geological Survey (USGS). Are the birth pangs increasing just as
Jesus explained? Some will simply say that technology has improved so that we
are now able to detect more earthquakes than in previous years. Let’s see if
that holds true. The 1906 earthquake that devastated San Francisco, for example,
registered 7.8 magnitude. According to the USGS website the Loma Prieta
earthquake of 1989 was recorded at a magnitude of 7.1 on the
very same equipment as the quake of
1906. What this example demonstrates is the equipment in place during the 1906
earthquake was quite sufficient in registering any quake that might have come
along. Simply put there just weren’t as many. Today’s earthquake frequency and
intensity is increasing exponentially just as the Bible clearly states.
Here’s a little more information for the skeptic. So far
this year (2011) 189 earthquakes have occurred within the range of magnitude
measuring from 6.0 to 9.0. In 1951 there were only two earthquakes at a
magnitude above 6.0, one recorded at 6.2 and the other at 6.3. Obviously
something substantial is going on in regards to the frequency
and intensity of earthquakes today,
which point us back to the Bible and the fact that we should regard Jesus’ words
as true and indisputable.
What must have been perceived as non-events by Bible
teachers fifty years ago has certainly fallen into the category of “WOW the
Bible is true” in the mind of any truth seeker today.
“…and earthquakes, in divers places”
Matthew 24:7b. The Greek word “kata” is translated divers in English
meaning “throughout” but it can also mean “daily”. So we can conclude that in
the days just prior to Jesus’ return there would be earthquakes occurring on a
global scale increasing in their frequency and intensity on a daily basis. Even
more interesting is the fact that earthquakes have increased so much in just the
last fifty years that now hundreds of earthquakes shake this world every day.
Pestilences: Any deadly infectious malady – including
plagues. In the last days they will come on mankind with increasing frequency
and intensity. In a country that prides itself as being on the cutting edge of
discoveries which result in medical cures and disease control, many ugly
maladies remain unstoppable. There are actually so many plagues and diseases
being combated today that they are too numerous to mention in this commentary.
Let me just say that the mother of major infectious plagues these days,
HIV/AIDS, is still on the top of the ladder when it comes to stubbornness.
HIV/AIDS has been found to be increasingly difficult to eradicate. Certainly
AIDS is the personification of the meaning behind Jesus’ word pestilence –
meaning communicable, transferable, transmittable, contagious. Take your pick,
isn’t this exactly what every society in every country on earth is experiencing?
There is an inordinate amount of frustration with this burgeoning disease.
Famine is the one sign on our Lord’s list of signs that has
the most potential for causing widespread calamity, which will certainly try
man’s soul to the max. And just as earthquakes and pestilences are nothing new
yet increasing in both intensity and frequency, so it is with famines. Today we
witness an intensifying devastation occurring in drought stricken countries.
I recently read an article which indicated that extreme
poverty in the U.S. is at record levels. The article stated that 1 in every 15
Americans are considered very poor, and that 20 million Americans are living in
“About 20.5 million
Americans, or 6.7 percent of the U.S. population, make up the poorest poor,
defined as those at 50 per cent or less of the official poverty level. Those
living in deep poverty represent nearly half of the 46.2 million people scraping
by below the poverty line. In 2010, the poorest poor meant an income of $5,570
or less for an individual and $11,157 for a family of four. That 6.7 percent
share is the highest in the 35 years that the Census Bureau has maintained such
records, surpassing previous highs in 2009 and 1993 of just over 6 percent.”
Source – Daily Mail
The obvious picture we see developing is that American’s
overall are becoming poorer not wealthier. Not only is employment declining but
so are wages. Once upon a time a famine was coming to America. It’s no fairytale
folks that famine, by all intents and purposes, has arrived. Food is certainly
high on the average persons mind every day. Poor people have a hard time buying
food, some people resort to stealing to get their daily bread. Some 46 million
Americans are currently receiving food stamps. When that well runs dry many will
turn to stealing to get what they and their family need to survive. The birth
pangs Jesus spoke about are unfolding before our eyes. Famines certainly can
cause the hearts of men to fail.
Obviously the return of our Lord and Savior Jesus the Christ
can’t be far off. These are the times Jesus referred to as the beginnings of
sorrows. According to Jesus’ own words the last generation is the generation
that will experience the brunt of birth pangs. We are that generation. But the
most intense of those birth pangs are yet to come and the removal of His Church
must surely be at hand. These times will become much worse as we move closer to
Christ’s return. Many of my brethren, me included, are praying constantly that
His return is only seven years away. That would mean that the Rapture of the
Church could occur today.
Everywhere we look the sky seems to be falling, yet few are
running for the One that protects and covers. Nothing can stop what’s coming,
the prophecies of the Bible must be fulfilled, and they will be to the letter.
Since there’s no place to run, no place to hide, that only leaves us one
alternative. The peace and joy we have in Christ will endure right up to the day
He takes us home. “Be careful for nothing…
And the peace of God, which passed all understanding, shall keep your hearts and
minds through Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6a-7.
God bless you all,
All scripture is from the KJV and God breathed