Jesus characterized the last days as a time when "iniquity shall abound" (Matthew 24:12). We have seen how this is true of our age,w hich is dominated to a frightening extent by immorality and crime. A general spirit of lawlessness already prevails in our time. We are approaching the state of affairs which the Bible says will be characteristic of the end times. This means that the judgment of God's wrath, proclaimed in the Revelation of john, is at the door. Destruction and doom impend [did you hear this, fellow Emmaus Walker?--Ed.]. The time of the Antichrist is upon us. In that time, according to the Bible, the "great dragon" will persecute all those "who keep the commandments of God and bear testimony to Jesus (Revelation 12:17). Those who keep God's commandments will be recognized by Satan as belonging to his great enemy, Jesus the Christ. Therefore he hates them. Thus a fateful decision hangs on our attitude toward the commandments. Do we truly belong to Christ and His Kingdom, or in the end will we be counted in the Anti-christ's kingdom [many of us Christians today even in evangelical circles and churches are already in his kingdom, but don't know it, we are so deceived! It happened with most evangelical Christians in Germany, voting for Hitler while thinking he was Germany's bringer of hope and change! That's the bad news. But the good news still is that we can be set free of the anti-christ spirit by the truth, if we cry out to God for him to show us what we are enslaved by.--Ed.].
Jesus admonished us to pay attention to the signs of the end times. We live in an hour when His words carry an urgency they have never had before. Men of mature judgment, in the most diverse fields of thought and activity, speak of this decisive event. Reinhold Schneider spent a lifetime seeking knowledge of the hidden workings of spiritual power. Before his death he said, "I am convinced that the end of history is near. Our time is the interval between the end of the realm and the last jerk of the clock-hand." Men like Kierkegaard, Burkhardt, Thomas Mann [by all means read his monumental BUDDENBROOKS, and THE MAGIC MOUNTAIN, or at least the much shorter DEATH IN VENICE showing a highly educated but decadent, perverse man pursuing the illusion of rare beauty in a young boy he glimpses only fleetingly just before his death, books by Mann that show the mortal spiritual, moral, and even intellectual decline of Western civilization and portend its coming overthrow.--Ed.] and R.M. Rilke onvey a somber mood of death. They were all gripped by the intuition that "not only was a century coming to an end, b that it was an "empirically established fact" that our situation is "'eschatological' in the fuller apocalyptic sense of the word."
This is simply the fact of our time. Today one can hardly get away from the reality that "The existence of the atomic bomb represents an immediate danger to all people. The situation is here. It cannot be reversed [just as the possession of an atomic bomb, with the long-range missiles to deliver it a thousand miles or more, by Iran against Israel, Europe, and even America, cannot be reversed.--Ed.]. Man is able to wipe mankind and all life from the face of the globe by his own action. The bare circumstances indicate that this end will come within the next decade." True, men can be mistaken. men are limited in knowledge and understanding. It might be unimportant that men of our time speak of a great darkness which is rapidly approaching.
But another prophesied a time of terror and darkness for mankind, namely God Himself, the Lord and Creator. He above all, has said it--the Lord who cannot be mistaken. His nature is in no way limited. What He has established cannot be changed. It is God who alone is all-knowing and all-mighty, who brings us these predictions and prophecies. His word remains valid for time and eternity.
No one has made prophecies thousands of years beforehand, which have been confirmed by the course of history [and what religious system, no matter what name it is given, has been able to do this, other than what we find in the Word of God, the Bible?--Ed.]. Only the Lord God could speak with such majesty. "I am the first and I am the last; besides me there is no god. Who is like me? Let him proclaim it, let him declare it and set it forth before me. Who has announced from of old the things to come? Let them tell us what is yet to be. Fear not, nor be afraid; have I not told you from of old and declared it? And you are my witnesses!" (isaiah 44:6-8).
In our time we are witnesses that God's prophecies for Israel have been fulfilled. In Deut. 28: 64-65, God said, "And the Lord will scatter you among all people, from one of the earth to the other...and among these nations you shall find no ease." And likewise in verse 37, He says "And you shall become a horror, a proverb, and a byword among all the peoples where the Lord will lerad you away." We read further in Lev. 26: 31-32, "I will lay your cities waste,and I will make your sanctuaries desolate...And I will devaste theland, so that your enemies who settle in it shall be astonished by it."
That is precisely what came to pass in the course of history. The land of Israel was laid waste. Her cities were turned to rubble. And her people were dispersed into virtually every nation of the world. One sees this clearly in the new State of Israel: Jews from more than seventy nations have returned to the land of their fathers [has this happened to any other ethnic people in history? Certainly, it has not, confirming again the word of the Lord about His dispersed people making Aliyah, or return to the land He gave to them.--Ed.]. For thousands of years they have been enslaved, despised, persecuted.
The prophecies concerning Israel were truly fulfilled. The prophecies concerning us and all nations will also be fulfilled. For the Lord did not prophesy alone concerning Israel. He also prophesied concerning the whole world in these latter days. In these prophecies He speaks of a time in which the nations would become unified. In these prophecies He speaks concerning the entire inhabited earth. He says, "The clamor will resound to the ends of the earth, for the Lord has an indictment against the nations; he is entering into judgment with all flesh, and the wicked he will put to the sword [Listen up, all you proud and Christian-and Jew-hating secularists in Congress and in the White House--this pertains to you too!--Ed.]. Behold, evil is going forth fgrom nation to nation, and a great tempest is stirring from the farthest parts of the earth" (Jeremiah 25: 31-32.
"Put in the sickle, for the harvest is ripe. Go in, tread, for the winepress is full. The vats overflow, for their wickedness is great" (Joel 3:13) [see note below about the sickle-bearing Bo-otes in the Bo-otes Constellation, which means "The Coming One, which is is now the brightest distant object in the sky!--Ed.]. "Behold, the day of the Lord comes, cruel, with wrath and fierce anger, to make the earth a desolation and todestroy its sinners from it...I will punish the world for its evil, and the wicked for their iniquity. I will put an end to the pride of the arrogant, and lay low the haughtiness of the ruthless...and the earth will be shaken out of its place, at the wrath of the Lord of hosts in the day of his fierce anger" (Isaiah 13:9, 11, 13).
In the New Testament, Jesus says exactly the same thing concerning the end times. He also says that fear and destruction will be visited upon the entire inhabited earth (Luke 21: 26). This is our situation today. Mankind has become a family of nations in our time. And the whole family is saturated with one spirit, the spirit of immorality and lawlessness [Lawlessness is endemic in America. In the news lately in Washington State, filmed on camera, a young woman struck an officer apprehending her for jaywalking. She was clearly in the wrong jaywalking in a very dangerous roadway in Seattle, refusing to take the safe elevated walkway because, as she said later, it involved climbing, and when accosted by the officer resisted and struck him, and he struck back, with a fist in the face to keep her and her friends no doubt from seizing his gun, for which the black community is now outraged about. Yet this young high schooler was lawless, showing the defiant spirit of this age and culture; she should have known to never strike officers when she is in the wrong, as she clearly was, nor should she strike them or anyone else for that matter unless defending herself from an attacker. She has since apologized, but the incident is yet fueling racial tensions in the black community in Seattle.--Ed.].
The end times, according to Jesus, will be like the times of Noah (Luke 17: 26:27). The characteristic of that age was that "the earth was corrupt" (Gen. 6:12). The word in our day is "decadence," which means corruption [and you could scarcely find a more corrupt, pleasure-loving, decadent, perverse, lawless, violent society than the culture of Seattle, Washington. Even their festivals such as Mardi Gras, Bumpershoot, Blue Angels Jet flyovers, and others must have huge numbers of law enforcement officers on hand, as they frequently degenerate into gang warfare, brutal beatings, and even killings.--Ed.].
Our times also have a commonfear and worry. Today a fearf of atomic war hangs like a sword of Damocles over all the nations of the earth. These are facts that cannot be ignored.
Jesus says, "When you see all these things, you know that he (Jesus) is near, at the very gates (Matt. 254:33). Thus it is the Lord who wants to rouse and alert us with all the facts. He calls us in this hour: The end times are here! Stay awake! Be ready! The whole of God's plan is about to be fulfilled!"
PLEASE RETURN FOR MORE OF THIS EXCERPT.
The constellation known as Bo-otes, or "The Coming One," shows a man with a sickle coming to reap a harvest, and, according to some, is a heavenly sign, predicting the return of Jesus to Earth.
On March 19, 2008, a powerful gamma ray burst detected by NASA's Swift Satellite in the Bo-otes constellation shattered the record for themost distant object that could be seen with the naked eye.