Let’s begin with a hypothetical story. You had attended Aunt Maggie’s birthday party on Saturday. Everybody loves Aunt Maggie, but a few family members consider her to be a little crazy. She just won’t stop talking about the Bible, the Rapture, and how everyone should accept Jesus. Now it’s Monday morning and time for work. This day had started like most mornings. After your shower, you want to watch the morning news while eating some toast and drinking coffee. There’s no television reception, just static.
The cable must be out. That’s strange, but you brush it off. Cousin Andy should be here soon to pick you up for the carpool to work, so you step outside to wait. Things are strangely quiet. Where are the children who should be waiting for the school bus?
Maybe there’s a school holiday. You look over to wave hello to Mrs. Smith, but she isn’t sitting in her rocking chair on the porch. She’s friends with Aunt Maggie and is the same type of crazy. She says she prays for everyone who goes by her house each morning. “I hope she isn’t ill” you think to yourself.
Your thoughts turn to Cousin Andy who’s late. Maybe he’s sick. At the party, he said he finally understood what Aunt Maggie had been trying to say. He realized that he was a sinner and he repented. He accepted Christ as his Saviour. Andy is always joking about something, and maybe this is just one of his jokes. Like when he was 10 years old and had a pet rock. You chuckle as you remember how he cared for that rock! Time passes and the silence continues.
It’s strange that no cars are passing by because people should be headed for work. Suddenly the woman across the street comes running through her front door screaming hysterically that her children are missing. The guy she’s living with is a very angry man and drinks a lot. You hope he didn’t do anything to the kids. None of her boyfriends last more than a couple of months, and it’ll be good when this one moves on. Other neighbors begin to come out into the street looking for family members.
You slowly begin to understand that many people have mysteriously gone missing. Then it hits you. Aunt Maggie was right. Cousin Andy won’t be coming to pick you up for work. God is real and He has called the Christians Home.
The above is a fictionalized story of what will soon happen, but many people choose to live in ignorance. Bible prophecy is being fulfilled quickly, but how many Christians see the urgency to witness to friends and family? How many of us say we don’t have time to study Scripture but we still have time to spend sitting on the couch watching television?
Many Christians memorize the statistics of a favorite sports team, are concerned about the ups and downs of the stock market, and know what blockbuster movie is in theaters, but don’t care about God’s word. All of the things of the world are of greater importance than studying Scripture and sharing the Gospel. No sports statistic or movie will bring you closer to Jesus, nor will they help you witness to a neighbor or family member.
Can you see the significance of President Trump moving the US Embassy to Jerusalem? How about more recently that he recognized that Israel has ownership of the Golan Heights? This is not going to sit well with Russia or other nations who will come against Israel. These events might be reported by the media but quickly are replaced by the latest celebrity scandal. Prophetically they are very important and can be used as a witnessing tool.
“Surely the Lord GOD will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets” (Amos 3:7).
God has given us prophecy to let us know where we are in relation to the end of time. The signs indicate that we’re getting close to the Rapture. Now would be the perfect time to be sure that you’ve accepted Christ for salvation and start living your life for Him. Now would be the perfect time to share your faith with others.
We need more evangelists like Paul. When he shared his faith with others, he didn’t tippy-toe around it. He spread the Gospel as Jesus directed. Paul spent three weeks in Thessalonica; and when he left, the people understood they were sinners who needed Jesus for salvation, and had a strong faith. Today many people can sit in pews for years and never even hear the Gospel preached, let alone prophecy.
Paul also taught them about the Rapture. When persecution came against the Christians in Thessalonica, they were worried that they had missed the Rapture, so Paul wrote letters assuring them that they hadn’t.
“That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand. Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God” (2 Thessalonians 2:2-4).
The man of sin is also referred to by many people as the Anti-Christ. Today there are some very strong candidates for that ‘title’; but before he comes to power, the ekklēsia (the church) will be caught away.
I’ve listened to many preachers over the years, and very few have actually taught tough truth. Only those who teach verse by verse through God’s word equip the congregation to stand strong on God’s word during these final days in which we live. These men don’t pick and choose words to tickle ears, but name sin as sin and encourage the congregation to take up their cross and follow Christ, not the world. Most Christians don’t pick up their Bibles and study; so if they aren’t being taught God’s truth from the pulpit, false doctrine is accepted.
Prophecy is a very neglected subject. Scripture is about 1/3 prophecy, maybe even more, so why is it ignored? Prophets of God have revealed His truth, and it’s recorded in Scripture. God’s prophecy is always correct, and past-fulfilled prophecy assures us that future prophecy will be fulfilled. Prophecy revealed many things about the coming Messiah, and Jesus fulfilled all of them. If the Jewish people had truly understood prophecy, Jesus wouldn’t have been rejected. That rejection was also prophesied.
“He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not” (Isaiah 53:3).
Because they crucified Him, His blood was shed to take away the sin of all who have faith in Him. Prophecy is also clear that He will return, but before that happens there will be a time like no other. It will be a time when Satan and his demons will terrorize everyone. We are seeing a rise in wickedness among people today, but it will get worse…much worse.
We cannot read the news today without seeing that wickedness is growing stronger. Paul told Timothy that the last days would see much evil.
“This know also that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away” (2 Timothy 3:1-5).
It’s as if Paul was describing today’s world. Headlines are filled with the promotion of unnatural affection of the homosexual agenda, and the killing of babies is seen as a victory. False accusers? Where do I start on that one? The loony left is doing all they can to ruin President Trump while the crimes of Hillary, Obama, and their cronies are ignored. In this upside-down world, God is despised while sin is embraced. What’s holding back this wickedness from having total control?
“For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way” (2 Thessalonians 2:7).
King James English is a little hard to understand, but this means something is restraining the wickedness. Until He who restrains is removed, total wickedness is still held back. Humans have no ability to stand against such evil; only God can restrain it. The Holy Spirit is holding the wickedness in check.
Christians are indwelt by the Holy Spirit. He leads us and teaches us God’s truth, but we can ignore Him. That’s happening today, and many Christians are so “tolerant” and “open minded” that many think that all roads lead to Heaven. Instead of uncompromising truth being preached from the pulpit, sin is tolerated. It’s more important to keep that tax shelter in place than teach that homosexuality and abortion are sins. God forgives all sin, but if a person doesn’t repent, then there’s no forgiveness.
Pastors don’t want to lose the money dropped in the collection plate if they upset anyone, so they preach politically correct sermons rather than Biblically correct ones. This doesn’t equip Christians to stand strong in their faith or fight the evil. There’s a remnant who are standing firm on God’s truth, but the majority of those who claim to be Christians would rather be accepted by the world than by God. One day very soon God will call those who have truly accepted Him for salvation Home, and that’s when the Restrainer is taken out of the way. Then the man of sin will be revealed and the final years of earth’s history will begin.
The truth is, even if the Rapture doesn’t happen soon, you or a loved one will die. You still need Jesus in order to be with Him for eternity. Jesus left Heaven to walk among His creation. Only His love for us held Him to the cross. There is no other way to eternal life than through faith in the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
“Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” John 14:6.
You may believe that in your mind, but when you study Scripture you will know it in your heart. Sin separated us from God, but Jesus took our sin upon Himself for our redemption. Every person has to make the choice for themselves. That choice must be made while living on this side of eternity.
The signs all point to the fact that we are very, very close to the Rapture. Those who haven’t accepted Jesus Christ as their Saviour will be left to face horrific times. Will you wake up one morning and wonder “Where did everybody go”?
If you’ve accepted Jesus for salvation, then you won’t face the wrath of God. If you haven’t accepted Him, then you’re in for a nightmare. Make the right choice now.
God bless you all,
Ron and Nathele Graham’s previous commentaries archived at https://www.raptureready.com/featured/graham/graham.html
All original scripture is “theopneustos,” God breathed.
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