Matthew 24:4-12; “And Jesus answered them, ‘See that no one leads you astray. For many will come in My name saying, “I am the Christ,” and they will lead many astray. And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not alarmed, for this must take place; but the end is not yet. For nations will rise up against nations, and kingdoms against kingdoms, and there will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these are but the beginning of the birth pains. Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and put you to death, and you will be hated by all nations for My name’s sake. And then many will fall away and betray one another, and hate one another. And many false prophets will arise and lead many astray. And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold.” (ESV – all emphasis mine)
Many of the mentioned issues in the above verses will be magnified during the 7-year tribulation/wrath, but the number of them occurring today is increasing rapidly. We have more signs now than ever before, and there is very little left that has to be done before the Rapture takes place. Just about everywhere around the globe, “Christianity” is not being tolerated, and in numerous Middle East countries and even in parts of Africa, Christians are being martyred just for taking Jesus as their Savior.
Luke 21 gives much of the same information. Beginning with verse 8, “And He said, ‘See that you are not led astray. For many will come in My name saying, “I Am He” and “the time is at hand”; do not go after them. And when you hear of wars and tumults, do not be terrified, for these things must first take place, but the end will not be at once.’
“Then He said to them, ‘Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be great earthquakes, and in various places famines and pestilences. And there will be terrors and great signs from heaven.”
Going to verse 17, “You will be hated for My name’s sake. But, not a hair of your head will perish. By your endurance, you will gain lives.” Then, verse 28 states, “Now when these things begin to take place, straighten up and raise your heads, because your redemption draws near.”
This world is being “programmed” more and more every day to welcome the evil antichrist and false prophet of the 7-year tribulation/wrath. There is a notable falling away from the true faith, and more people are seeking earthly pleasures and treasures than those seeking Heavenly things. Matthew 7:13-14, where more are on the road to destruction than on the straight and narrow path that leads to eternal life, is very evident today worldwide.
Romans 11:25 states, “Lest you be wise in your own sight, I do not want you to be unaware of this mystery, brothers; a partial hardening has come upon Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in.”
As of 2022, there are approximately 15.2 million Jews worldwide. Of that number, approximately 1% to 3% are truly Messianic. These are the ones that accept Yeshua, Jesus, as their Messiah. The balance is mostly bound by Judaism, a religion dating back approximately 4,000 years that believes in God, and their traditional form of worship is “temple inspired.” This form of their religion does not believe that the Messiah has come yet but will arrive one day.
According to Zechariah 13, in the last days, two-thirds of Israel will perish, but the remaining survivors will recognize Jesus as their true Messiah.
Regarding the reference made to “pestilences,” in 2019-2021, a major locust infestation took place across East Africa, the Arabian Peninsula, and the Indian Continent. It was a magnitude not seen in numerous decades, and the total damage was substantial.
One more point, found in 1 John 4:1-3; “Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world. By this you know the Spirit of God; every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you heard was coming and now is in the world already.”
John’s observation was from almost 2,000 years ago, and there were already false prophets and antichrists present. Just over the past twenty or so years, satanic activity has emerged from behind closed doors and is boldly out in the open. This movement is gaining ground rapidly, and this world is heading for the end of this age, as given in God’s word.
What we need now is to be “Listening for the Call” rather than watching all the signs. We need to get even closer to our Messiah and give Him praise and glory for the wonderful free gift He gave us at Calvary. In 2011, Mark Bishop released a song called “I’m Listening for the Call,” and it’s well worth reading and listening to on YouTube.
(1) “When I was a little boy, I heard about the last days, some morning when the Lord will come again. I remember how the saints of old sang about His coming; guess I didn’t think that much about it then.
Soon, the years took me far away, and church became a memory. I lived my life believing they were wrong. But every day I live, I see those prophecies fulfilling; by the signs of the times, I believe it won’t be long.
(ref) In the east, on a cloud, He’ll be coming for His children, and the monuments of sin will surely fall. I can see by the word that the day is drawing nearer; I’m not looking for the signs anymore; I’m listening for the call.
(2) Take a look in the Bible, and you’ll read of wars and famine; you’ll read about where men will fall away; two thousand years ago, upon pages that were written, but I’m telling you it sounds just like today.
I can see by the word that the day is drawing nearer. I’m not looking for the signs anymore; I’m listening for the call.”
The call will come for all true believers in Jesus the Christ. Just as 1 Thessalonians 1:10, 1 Thessalonians 5:9-10, and Revelation 3:10 promise, the Father will keep us from the coming wrath. What is taking place right now in this world is totally unpleasant, to say the least, but the final 7-years prior to Jesus’ actual stepping foot on earth will be worse than ever experienced so far.
So, according to 1 Thessalonians 4:13-17 and 1 Corinthians 15:51-53, we should be listening for the “Trumpet of God” to sound and the call of an archangel. The thing is, by the time this happens, we will already be on our way up to meet Jesus in the air in a “twinkling of an eye.”
We pray every day, multiple times a day, that all our loved ones have received and accepted Jesus as their Savior. God will not force anyone to accept the free gift His Son has provided, but to all who will call out, He will gladly provide for their Salvation. Please see Romans 10:9-13 for the simple steps to being saved.
Likewise, God will respect anyone’s decision if they decide to reject the free gift, and He will allow them to spend eternity in absolute darkness in the Lake of Fire. That’s found in Revelation 20:11-15.
Once again, referencing Luke 21:28, the “beginning” started about a decade ago, and every day could be the one that we will receive the call. Having Jesus in our hearts and the Holy Spirit living within us is a guarantee that our reservation for eternal life in Heaven is intact. No one has sinned so greatly that the blood of the Savior cannot reach them. The only unforgivable sin is to take your last breath here without having Jesus as your Messiah.
Today would not be too soon to call out; it will be the most important decision you will ever make.