Last week, I watched much of the Republican National Convention. I felt inspired as I heard several life stories of those who love both Jesus and our nation. The speakers from every walk of life reminded us that President Trump loves the United States as well as all its people regardless of their race or status. Those sharing experiences of their encounters with the president decimated the false narrative of the media that portrays him as a racist and a hateful person.
I felt a bit of optimism for America should President Trump win a second term this fall.
However, the stirring stories of everyday Americans stand in stark contrast to what we witnessed on the streets of the United States at the same time.
I will start with the violent thugs who bullied those leaving the White House grounds after the President’s speech. The unruly mob harassed people with bullhorns and obscene gestures and attempted an attack on Senator Rand Paul, who credits the Capital Police with saving his life. I felt much disgust as I watched videos of these hooded and vile rioters targeting people as they walked to their cars.
In Kenosha, Wisconsin, Marxist anarchists burned down businesses and churches in the name of “justice.” Despite claiming to care about the lives of black people, they destroyed countless businesses owned by black people and burned a church that outwardly proclaimed its loyalty to Black Lives Matter. They destroyed the lives of many people regardless of their race or political affiliation.
The week ended with the killing of a Trump supporter in Portland, Oregon, that drew cheers from the Black Lives Matter and Antifa crowd.
How do we reconcile these diverse scenes? On the one hand, we saw a firm stand for liberty, the life of the unborn, and the preservation of our freedoms. At the same time, we witnessed demonic outbursts of hatred, murder, and violence fully intent at destroying our way of life and God-given rights.
What does it all mean? What can we expect in the days ahead? Are we at the end of life as we know it?
The Restrainer Remains Active
As I struggled last week to put these conflicting pieces together, 2 Thessalonians 2:1-12 came to mind. In these verses we see the same opposing forces that I see at work in the United States.
Satan is the driving forces behind the “mystery of lawlessness” (v. 7) that has continued from the time of the apostle Paul until its current manifestation on our streets. This passage reminds us that the growing anarchy we see in our world will lead to the rise of the one Paul refers to as the “lawless one” who will someday proclaim himself to be “God” and defile the future Jewish temple in Jerusalem.
The work of the Holy Spirit also helps us understand where we are at today. He is the “restrainer” (vv. 7-9) who now holds back the appearance of the one who will someday embody the rampant lawlessness and wickedness of our day. Satan cannot unveil his man, the antichrist, until after the current restraining work of the Holy Spirit ends.
While we witness anarchy and wickedness growing exponentially, we also see the Holy Spirit at work drawing people to the Savior in large numbers and turning the eyes of a multitude of saints upward in anticipation of Jesus’ imminent return. As the words of 2 Thessalonians 2:1-12 come ever so close to reaching fulfillment, it’s not surprising that we see evidence of the Holy Spirit’s work in changing the lives of so many in our world at the same time as lawlessness grows at an ever accelerating pace.
The Rapture Will Change Everything
Without question, I believe Paul’s words in 2 Thessalonians 2:1-7 tell us that the Lord will remove the Holy Spirit’s restraining influence when He takes His church out of the world. This means the rapture must happen before the Lord allows Satan to install his man at the helm of the coming New World Order or what the World Economic Forum refers to as the Great Reset.
The rapture will change everything in regard to the current dynamic between the demonic forces of evil seeking to destroy our world and the convicting work of the Holy Spirit working in the hearts of countless millions. Without His restraint, Satan will bring his many to power and wreak much more havoc on the world that we currently see.
I do not know who will prevail in the November 3 election in America or what lies ahead for my country. I pray that the rapture happens soon; I see this as the best outcome for the fall, although I fully realize that the Lord may tarry for a while longer. I believe violence and lawlessness will grow despite who wins on November 3.
I know that when Jesus returns for His bride, the world will suddenly become a dark and foreboding place with the devil able to move forward with his agenda to bring the antichrist to power.
Why Do I Believe the Rapture is so Close?
If you saw the optimistic spirit of the Republican National Convention last week, you might question why I believe the tribulation is so close and with it the rapture that must occur before it. If President Trump wins the coming election, won’t life return to normal?
It’s the convergence of a myriad of biblically prophetic signs combined with the unabated wickedness and violence I see particularly in America that tell me the rapture must happen soon. Eventually, the forces that seek to subject the world to the totalitarian world government of the tribulation will prevail, perhaps in the not too distant future.
The fact that we now see so much lawlessness and unrelenting evil at the same time as the Holy Spirit changes many lives tells me we are on the brink of seeing the words of 2 Thessalonians 2:1-12 come to full fruition. Yes, there is revival in many places in America, but it has not yet impacted the vile practice of abortion. While we see some progress in the war against sex trafficking on a national level, the very same powerful forces that seek to destroy America also promote this wickedness along with pedophilia and its related worship of Satan.
The vivid preview of 2 Thessalonians 2:11 also tells me the rapture must be close. There Paul wrote, “Therefore God sends them a strong delusion, so that they my believe what is false” (2 Thess. 2:11). For me, this verse explains much of what I see. So many people appear incapable of recognizing truth or of understanding the times in which we live.
What Does it All Mean?
What does it mean? How do we reconcile the optimism and positive spirit of the Republican Convention with violence, lawlessness, and extreme wickedness around us?
One the one hand, the vulgar and threatening behavior of the Marxist thugs after the president’s speech reminds us that we live in a time when the battle between Satan and the Lord has spilled over into this world as never before in history. Multi-billionaire globalists remain intent on bringing the world under their jurisdiction and have powerful, influential allies in the media and in leadership position in America and all across the world. They will continue facilitating violence and lawlessness in hopes of weakening America to the point where they can implement their demonically inspired agenda.
On the other hand, we can rest assured that until the Lord comes for us, the Holy Spirit will keep the antichrist in the shadows of our world, continue to bring people to a saving faith in Jesus, and remind those saints who pay attention to prophecy that Jesus is indeed coming soon.
Rest assured that Satan can do absolutely nothing to diminish our “blessed hope” in the imminent appearing of Jesus (Titus 2:11-14). After the tribulation, we will ride victoriously with our Lord and King as He returns to set up His kingdom on the earth and rule over the nations that now despise and reject Him.
The verse that has remained a source of much comfort throughout 2020 is Psalm 46:10, “Be still, and know that I am God. / I will be exalted among the nations, / I will be exalted in the earth!” Although this is a simple verse to memorize, I often turn to it in my Bible and then read Psalm 47 that further describes the coming glorious reign of our Savior. God’s sovereignty remains a blessed refuge for my soul as our world hurls toward the tribulation at a frightening pace.
So yes, it remains difficult too for me to reconcile the optimism for America I see in many places with the powerful forces that seek to destroy our freedoms and subject us to the slavery of Socialism.
However, I know that God is sovereign over all that we now see in our world, and someday soon we will be with Him in glory.
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