Are We Approaching The End Times? :: By Grant Phillips

From 1956 to 2010, a popular soap opera was viewed on television (not by me, though) called As The World Turns. Personally, I could never understand why people would watch that stuff unfold day after day on TV. Yet, this show thrived for 54 years, and that was just one out of several others.

Today, as I and many other Christians behold current events, I’m made dizzy as our world turns around us in the 21st century. Many Christians wonder, “Are we living on borrowed time?” Several prophecy teachers have actually stated that very question, and I would have to agree with them. We are living on borrowed time.

Before God destroyed the world with a flood in Noah’s day, He warned everyone that His judgment was coming. Noah preached God’s message of warning for 120 years, and no one listened except those in his family. When the time was up, it started to rain, but not before He removed Enoch from the earth and secured Noah and his family safely in the ark.

Before God destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah, they were warned. Then fire came down from heaven, but not before God removed Lot and his family.

Before God destroyed Nineveh, the capital of Assyria, they were warned by Jonah in about the 9th century B.C. They repented at that time and were saved, but eventually were destroyed three centuries later because they went back to their old ways of corruption.

God warned Israel, the northern kingdom, until they were finally taken into captivity by Assyria around 721 B.C.

God warned Judah also until they too were taken into captivity by the Babylonians around 586 B.C.

God has always provided warnings before He administered His judgment, and He is warning our world today, not just by prophets but also through many signs that His judgment is coming. This coming judgment is called several names, some of which are:

The time of Jacob’s trouble (Daniel 9:24-27)
Daniel’s 70th week (Daniel 9:24-27)
A time of trouble or distress (Daniel 12:1)
The great day of His wrath (Revelation 6:17)
The hour of trial which shall try the whole earth (Revelation 3:10)
The indignation (Isaiah 26:20)
Tribulation and the Great Tribulation (Matthew 24:21, 29; Mark 13:19, 24; Revelation 7:14)
The Day of the Lord (Joel 1:15; 2:1; 1 Thessalonians 5:2)

This coming judgment upon the world is commonly known to us today as the Tribulation. Jesus told us the Church will suffer many tribulations while in the world, but these tribulations brought on by mankind are not “the” Tribulation. When “the” Tribulation comes upon the world, it will be God’s direct judgment upon mankind. This day is coming just as surely as judgment fell upon the whole world in Noah’s day, and on Sodom and Gomorrah in Lot’s day, and upon Nineveh, Israel, Judah and other peoples.

The purpose of the Tribulation concerning the Jewish people is found in Daniel 9:24.

“Seventy weeks are determined
For your people and for your holy city,
To finish the transgression,
To make an end of sins,
To make reconciliation for iniquity,
To bring in everlasting righteousness,
To seal up vision and prophecy,
And to anoint the Most Holy.”

The purpose of the Tribulation concerning all Gentiles is to judge the world’s rebellion against God, but even through His judgment, many will come to Him and be saved. It is always His desire, even in judgment, that many be saved.

“Truly, these times of ignorance God overlooked, but now commands all men everywhere to repent, “because He has appointed a day on which He will judge the world in righteousness by the Man whom He has ordained. He has given assurance of this to all by raising Him from the dead” (Acts 17:30-31).

“For when Your judgments are in the earth, The inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness” (Isaiah 26:9).

“The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance” (2 Peter 3:9).

The Day of the Lord begins with the Tribulation and continues through the Millennium. Many signs or warnings are provided by God to announce the coming Tribulation, but before it begins, Jesus will remove His bride, the Church, from the earth just as He removed Enoch from the coming worldwide flood of Noah’s day and took him to Heaven.

The fact that we are seeing so many signs today of the coming Tribulation is an urgent warning that we are living on borrowed time; the Church age is quickly coming to an end. There are no signs for the removal of the Church (Rapture). It will be without warning, and then the Tribulation will commence thereafter.

The signs we are seeing today are like signs we receive when a storm is about to arrive. As you know, even before the storm arrives, the clouds start moving in, the temperature drops, there is a different smell in the air, the wind starts blowing, and it starts getting darker. That is where we are today concerning the Tribulation. The Tribulation hasn’t yet arrived, but the clouds are moving in, the world is getting colder, there is a different smell in the air, the winds of rebellion are picking up, and the world is getting darker. How far away is the storm? God is telling us that is His business, but time is running out.

When I was young, there weren’t even close to the number of signs we are witnessing today, although when I was a one-year-old, perhaps the greatest sign occurred, and that was Israel becoming a nation. Israel becoming a nation on May 14, 1948, is the foundation for everything else. Then on June 7, 1967, Jerusalem came under Israeli control in the Six-Day War. Since then, the signs have gotten exponentially more numerous and severe, until today, they are actually hard to keep up with.

David Reagan, a prophecy teacher and founder of Christ In Prophecy, put the signs in categories to make them easier to follow. He listed his categories as follows:

The Signs of Nature
The Signs of Society
The Spiritual Signs
The Signs of Technology
The Signs of World Politics
The Signs of Israel

In the book of Daniel, we find that he, Daniel, was confused by the information that God had provided him concerning the time of the end. God told him:

“But you, Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book until the time of the end; many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall increase” (Daniel 12:4).

It wasn’t meant for Daniel to understand, so God told him to seal the book, and when the time was right, those living at the time of the end would understand. That time is now. God has unsealed the book, and today has opened the minds of His own to understand.

The sand in the hourglass of time is nearly depleted. The time is now for all who will to recognize that we can almost see the finish line. Jesus is coming soon, which is a joyous thought for all who know Him as Savior and Lord. It can be a joyous time for anyone who will come to Jesus and be saved. Sure, judgment is coming, and it is going to be beyond terrible, but all who belong to Jesus will not experience His judgment, only His salvation.

Jesus’ words to Jerusalem can apply to anyone today who will come to Him and be saved.

“O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the one who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing!” (Matthew 23:37).

Grant Phillips

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