This is a biblical term found four times in the New Testament in the NASB. Only two of these will concern us in this message. They are:
2Timothy 3:1 “Realize this, that IN THE LAST DAYS difficult times will come.” And 2Peter 3:3 “Know this first of all, that IN THE LAST DAYS mockers will come with their mocking, following after their own lusts.”
Both those references concern the last days. It is no good talking about a term and not explaining it. The question then is, “What does this term mean, and when are the last days?”
I am getting on a bit now, but we used to use that expression in the 1960s, and in churches then that were not as liberal as they are today, this term was more widely considered. We used to think then that we were in the last days so the Rapture must have been close. People would talk about the Common Market that was formed by the Treaty of Rome on Mar 25, 1957. Prophetic students knew that the European nations under the control of the Antichrist would number 10, so this new formation was very closely watched (The Revived Roman Empire).
As the years went on, we would take note of the growing number of nations as it rose towards 10 and then exceeded 10, which some thought was a bit strange and confusing. All that now has passed into the EU – European Union closely allied with NATO.
The fact that it was called The Treaty of Rome was most significant at the time because of the Revived Roman Empire that would come and be Antichrist’s home base. Add to that the fact that Israel as a State was in its infancy, becoming a nation around 1948. Some used to say a generation was 40 years, and they tried to apply this verse – Matthew 24:34 “Truly I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all these things take place.” But the problem was it was applied wrongly. Of course, those times were in the Cold War, so the threat of war was ever-present.
When all the above things were considered, many thought they were then in the last days and that the Lord could return at any time (the Rapture). However, the years rolled on, and the Lord did not come. Some Christians foolishly tried setting dates and publishing books and ended up making fools of themselves.
Now we have passed on 50 years from the time I was seriously studying prophecy, and so we are here today. The great question is, “What did the Lord mean by ‘in the last days’?” 1988 was a popular date (1948 plus 40 years).
IN THE LAST DAYS – AND – THE END OF THE AGE
There are two aspects to this in scripture. We talk about the last days before the Rapture and the last days before the Second Coming. In the Old Testament, all the references to “IN THE LAST DAYS” (and there are many of them) are all set in the Tribulation, particularly at the end of that 7-year period.
In the New Testament, that expression means in the last days before the Rapture. This also coordinates with what is called “the end of the age.” The disciples were asking the Lord on Olivet about the signs of His coming and the end of the age. Here it is:
Matthew 24:3 “As He was sitting on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to Him privately saying, ‘Tell us, when will these things be, and what will be the sign of Your coming and of the end of the age?'”
They were asking Him about the end of the age leading into the Second Coming. The Old Testament prophets deal with this very fully. I have covered that in the postings on “The Day of the LORD.” When they asked that question, the Church had not yet been formed, and the Rapture was unknown until Paul revealed it to the Corinthians as “a mystery” in 1Corinthians 15. The Old Testament references to “in the last days” are all connected with the Second Coming.
However, there is also what we can call “the end of the Church age.” The Church age ends when the Lord takes the Church home to glory at the Rapture. We are now in “the last days of the Church age.” Were we in the last days of the Church age in the 1960s? Well, the answer is, “Yes, but not as much as now. Time is not a problem with an omnipresent God where tomorrow is as yesterday.
A DEEPER CONSIDERATION OF OUR TIMES – THE YARDSTICK FOR MEASURING THE LAST DAYS
The world is moving into a great period of chaos and stupidity and economic mismanagement. We talk about the last days, but is there a way of determining whether we are actually in the last days? Well, there is. I call that the yardstick, and it is in this passage – Matthew 16:1-3 “The Pharisees and Sadducees came up, and testing Him asked Him to show them a sign from heaven. But He answered and said to them, ‘When it is evening, you say, ‘It will be fair weather, for the sky is red.’ And in the morning, ‘There will be a storm today, for the sky is red and threatening.’ Do you know how to discern the appearance of the sky, but cannot discern THE SIGNS OF THE TIMES?”
“The signs of the times” – an interesting expression, but when we look at this event, the Lord is actually upbraiding the Pharisees for not knowing the signs of the times. In other words, they should have recognized that Jesus was their Messiah and Israel’s time had come, but they were blind. How many Christians are there today who are blind and cannot recognize the signs of the times that are now all around us? Before we pursue that further, we look at one of the scriptures from above:
2Timothy 3:1-5 “Realize this, that in the last days difficult times will come, for men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, unloving, irreconcilable, malicious gossips, without self-control, brutal, haters of good, treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, [and] holding to a form of godliness, although they have denied its power. Avoid such men as these.”
The scoffers come along (Peter said they would) and try saying that the descriptions Paul gave have always been in the world, so how did Paul mean it to apply that to our last days? To begin with, in verse 1, he uses the description “difficult times,” which the KJV calls “perilous times.” It means “times of great hardship,” and that means in daily living, but more importantly, it is meant to apply to the Christian believer living in these days. Yes, there is application to the world, but more specifically to believers.
For the intelligent reader, I don’t need to spell out in detail all the problems that are now surfacing and doing so at a rapid pace, but here are some for starters – energy problems because of the hoax of climate change; increased inflation because of economic mismanagement; increased interest rates; real and looming food shortages; and the inability of nations to govern correctly and decently. Take a look at the (hopeless) leaders of the USA, the UK, Australia, Canada, and New Zealand. It is creating chaos in government. That is because God has been thrown out, so God has said, “Go your own way,” and that way is chaos and crippling decisions on people.
The health provisions in Australia are worse than woeful; unbelievably woeful, and that I know from experience. On the other hand, we pull down all our coal power stations and spend tens of billions of dollars on windmills, all imported from China. Our downfall is raising up China.
The education systems are suffering, and the curricula in developed nations is now WOKE and socialist. That has never happened before in history. Education has always been about excellence and the pursuit of the mind. Children’s sexuality and gender are being destroyed, as are the murders of tens of millions of unborn lives in abortion (73 million yearly, but the WHO states 40-50 million), and marriage is perverted with homosexuality. There is so much more, but I leave it with you.
Going back to our question above about that Timothy passage, “How did Paul mean it to apply to our last days?” Well, I think the paramount change from other generations to ours is that evil things are put into legislation. Never before in the world have there been legislative endorsements for homosexual marriage and abortion. Never before is jail time legislated for Christians found outside abortion clinics. A few months ago, a woman was arrested for that very thing, and this is the report:
Liverpool, England, Jul 20, 2022 (From a Catholic News Agency but widely reported)
“A 76-year-old English grandmother who was fined for praying near an abortion clinic has successfully overturned her financial penalty, but human rights campaigners still fear that the initial fine represents “a worrying trend in law enforcement” regarding certain beliefs. Rosa Lalor, from Liverpool, England, was issued the fine during the country’s lockdown in February 2021 after a policeman questioned why she was outdoors. She replied that she was “walking and praying.”
It was not so much for being outdoors as being near an abortion clinic that she suffered persecution. People are becoming harder and harder, and more persecution is happening. The god of Moloch has now erected barriers to exclude and persecute Christians who want to stop the “hurling of the unborn into the fire.”
The Bible talks about lawlessness increasing in the last days, and that is so true in Australia and, I think, in most western nations. Lawlessness is not just behavior. It also includes legislation regarding “bills without law,” that is, unlawful bills according to the scriptures. To legislate for full marriage for two homosexuals is unlawful in God’s eyes and, therefore, lawlessness. In my city, the theft of cars by a certain dark people in Australia is totally out of hand – about one stolen and crashed car for every 120 – 140 people. What does the State Government do about it? Absolutely nothing. It has no penalty for this “ethnic” group of people. Most offenders are aged between 7 and 15.
2 TIMOTHY CHAPTER 3, VERSES 1-5
We return to our passage. These aspects listed are all of the fallen human nature, yet the intensity of them today has increased dramatically over the last couple of decades. I won’t examine each one, but you look at them, especially if you are older, and take note of how the intensity has increased in your lifetime.
As for me, I have never seen such greed for money as I see all around me. Arrogant people are everywhere, especially people in their twenties. Maybe you have seen it differently, but it is my experience. ‘Haters of good’ is increasing. I grew up when even non-Christians were being decent, but today, there is such a delusion towards wickedness that it is embraced. I have found in dealings mainly in governments, treachery in the Public Service and in the justice and law enforcement departments is frequently encountered, which was not the case in the past to that extent.
I looked at two videos yesterday focusing on the USA that I found very disturbing. One was a questioning of one of Biden’s Aides – Blinken – by Senator Ted Cruz. Cruz was really good at that. One other one was so exposing. It is titled ‘HOW ABOUT HUNTER’ John Kennedy puts ‘Director’ Wray in PANIC MODE. Senator John Kennedy is brave and honest as he puts the head of the FBI under the microscope: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ym4TA9Gn-Z4
I won’t even begin on “lovers of pleasure.” It is endemic.
In New Zealand and Australia, sports is god! Gaming and entertainments never cease.
ADVANCING TO OTHER SERIOUS ISSUES
There is so much happening in the world that it is difficult to keep up with it all. We are considering the “difficult times.” In the next few years, if the Lord tarries, we are going to see problems with inflation, energy, food shortages, economic pressures, and interest rates. Military build-up will continue, but my thinking is that we will not see any widescale conflict before the Rapture. As many know, the outbreak of war happens when peace is taken from the earth with the second seal, the rider on the red horse. The world is ready for war, and some places are itching for it, such as China, North Korea, Russia, and Iran. Can you imagine what it will be like when peace is removed? That must mean the Rapture is close, so we are well and truly at the end of the last days.
This is very disturbing. I don’t want to sound like a conspiracy subscriber, but if we are in the last days, then we have to see the world starting to become one. Indeed, we do. What has brought the world together? Two things – the Covid virus and the hoax of climate change. Who is controlling the agenda for gathering the nations? Well, it is the WEF helped by the WHO. Covid was a fortunate event for the WEF as it helped enormously in gaining world control. However, climate change is being used to weaken the nations and bring them under one agenda into submission, and that is happening. Net zero and control over nations is what we are seeing.
I find in my nation, dumbing down has been happening for more than 10 years now. Freedoms have been taken away and continue to do so. More and more legislation is controlling people and making normal life difficult. Vehicle speeds on the roads are being lowered all the time and roads made more and more difficult to travel on. Artificial speed limits allow the police to fine people more and more. Bicycles have more rights than motorists, and more money is being spent on them than on road improvement. All this is the Green agenda pushed by very powerful forces and billionaires like Homes à Court. I had to go see about medical forms and was surprised to see the authorities know almost every single thing about me, all on computer file. I have no doubt there is a special designation there as well that I am a Christian.
Stupidity reigns. The New Zealand Government has introduced a burp tax on farmers, taxing them for the methane and carbon dioxide their poor animals produce. Lunacy is unbelievable. Farmers are penalized for using fertilizer for crops and for having livestock, but the cost of food keeps rising all the time and will skyrocket. A normal person would realize this, but there is a great big satanic delusion all over the world now, and Satan is tightening the cords for people’s misery. Scoffers will laugh at me, but that is your delusion. Ordinary aware people will sense this is happening.
There are two verses from 2Timothy 3:12-13 “Indeed, all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will be persecuted. Evil men and impostors will proceed from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived.”
These are very disturbing and follow on from the opening verses about the last days. We see in these two verses that Christians will face persecution, and more and more, that is happening. Christian football players in Australia are now sacked if they do not agree with homosexuality. We have the second verse telling us that evil men will get worse and worse. What we think is bad right now in 2022 is going to be worse in 2023. Those evil men now will be worse next year. It continues to worsen until the Rapture comes.
These are not alarmist views but direct verses from our Bibles. I may have rambled on here, but I’ve attempted to shine a light on our world in the light of Bible prophecy about the last days of the Church age, which is right where we are now. They are not exaggerated views. If you doubt this, consider what the world was like 10 years ago. You did not have shortages of food and goods; your fuel prices were stable; there was access to medical treatment; there was no threat of open war from Russia or China; electricity supply and price were stable… there are so many more.
GETTING BACK TO THE PETER VERSE
Let us consider now the verse from Peter:
2Peter 3:3 “Know this first of all, that IN THE LAST DAYS mockers will come with their mocking, following after their own lusts.”
If Peter is true, then we must have these mockers in the world more than ever before, and we do! Up until 100 years ago, even if men were not Christians, they seemed to have some semblance of faith or Christian respect. Very few of them, even atheists, would mock the faith. They wanted to argue but not denigrate and scorn the Bible and Christians as we have today. People are hostile to the Christian faith and mock and persecute Christian beliefs.
The largest Mardi Gras in the world for homosexuals and lesbians and all the hangers-on parade through the streets of Sydney, Australia, mocking Christian leaders and blaspheming the Lord. There is hardly a university today where the staff does not openly mock the Christian faith. These rationalists and humanists think they are intelligent, but they are fools in God’s sight and will give account at the great white throne.
Today, mockers are everywhere. They laugh at Christians and scorn their beliefs. Well, I have news for them – Philippians 2:9-11 “Therefore also God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those who are in heaven, and on earth, and under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”
There is coming a day in judgment when all these scoffers and blasphemers and persecutors and atheists will be forced to bow their knees and confess that Jesus is LORD! Let us see how much scoffing they will do in that day.
The signs of the time absolutely indicate we are in the last days of the Church age, so Christian, how are you living for the Lord? Are you careless about your faith and testimony? Will you be ashamed when He returns for His Bride? Is your life counting little for the Lord who saved you? Right now, repent and live for the Lord. The time is very short.