Category Archives: Eschatology

-Are We Really in the End Times?

The Night of the Blood-Red Moon.
(Image by Athena’s Pix via Flickr)

Earthquakes, Wars, natural catastrophes, signs in the heavens above, rumors of war, the whole earth in confusion, leaders calling for a ‘new world’ order, and everyone seems to be against Israel.

Could we really be in the ‘end times’? I hear this question being posed over and over again by Christian friends lately.

When I was younger I was totally convinced that we were in the ‘end times’ and that Jesus would be coming back very soon. I can remember being especially excited over those prospects after reading Hal Lindsey’s Late Great Planet Earth in 1973. I was convinced at the time and still am that the reestablishment of the Jewish nation of Israel in 1948 was a major end time sign.

Over the next 15 years I read everything that came off the presses having to do with the End Times and Eschatology. PreMil, PostMil, AMil, PreTrib, PostTrib, MidTrib, and PreWrath—I studied it all with as open a mind as I could without letting my brains fall out. In the process I came away with the realization that I could find something missing and sometimes something down right wrong in every book and every eschatological tradition.

If I was forced to pick I would probably lean toward a PreMil-PreWrath approach but most of the time I like to say that I am PanMil and PanTrib—I am going to wait and see how it all ‘pans out’.

Fact is at the end of time when we look back at the final events, every single scripture and prophecy will be completely fulfilled and it won’t be necessary to stretch a thing when it comes to hermeneutics or Bible interpretation.

The only thing that I have studied more than eschatology is hermeneutics and that is why I am super sensitive to the ways many ‘prophecy’ writers run ruff shod over even basic rules of Biblical interpretation.

I have come to believe (and I have stated it before) that when it comes to the end times every single book printed regardless of the tradition has one thing in common—they are all wrong somewhere and lack something. Not only that—if I wrote a book on this subject I would be wrong also on some point or another.

This doesn’t mean that reading books on this subject is a waste of time. Many are valuable and it is important to become conversant with the basic issues and gain an understanding of the possible end time signs. However, I have come to believe that Lord has made it all somewhat cloudy in the scriptures on purpose except for the basic events. The timing and sequence is where there is the greatest disparity between the different traditional schemas.

I have come to believe that the last will be like the first. The last generation will be caught by surprise and be somewhat unprepared for the way the final events happen just like folks were not ready in the first century for a Messiah that came as a poor baby in a stable and went on to become a sacrificing servant cursed and killed on a Roman cross.

Not one ‘prophecy’ teacher in the first century was looking for that sequence of events and a ‘suffering servant’ Messiah. Also I believe that not one prophecy teacher in the end generation will have it completely nailed down either. I do believe however that the reestablishment of ‘prophetical ministry’ in the church will be helpful in preparing many for the events to come.

So, are we really in the end of the ‘end times’? I don’t know, maybe. It sure seems to be stacking up that way!

Next Post: More on the End Times

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-Earthquakes, Prophecy, and Pentecost

Earthquake in Italy
(Image by luca.m. via Flickr)

The ‘end-time’ teachers are going crazy covering all of the major earthquakes lately falling over themselves noting how the scriptures include the escalation of world-wide earthquakes as one of the signs of the end-times.

Many are expecting to be raptured at any moment. However, I don’t believe that the Lord is finished with humanity quite yet.

If we are entering the final moments of history before the return of Jesus than we can also expect a world-wide harvest that touches every nation. After all, we are commanded to make disciples of all nations and for me the most important end-time sign of all is this one:

“And this Gospel of the Kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end shall come.” –Matt. 24:14

Many looking for a quick rapture typically don’t consider** that there are still places in this world that the Gospel has not reached yet but the pace is picking up at an incredible rate right now. Already there are major revivals going on all over the world particularly in Africa, India, and Asia including a hidden harvests going on in Muslim countries. Over six million Muslims have been secretly coming to Christ every year since 9/11/2001.

Here’s a prophetic message from Cindy Jacobs:

The Winds of Pentecost

She believes that major revivals are going to break out at every one of the recent earthquake locations:

On December 31, 2009, the Holy Spirit spoke through me and said: “I’m going to shake the earth. You will begin to see earthquakes—I am going to shake everything that can be shaken. Look where the earthquakes are hitting because God is going to release a wind of Pentecost in those places.”

She also says that the Day of Pentecost this year is particularly important for ushering in a new world-wide revival:

Pentecost this year is May 23, …

God wants His winds of Pentecost to blow at Pentecost. The Lord says: “I want My people to pray in a new Pentecost that will sweep the face of the earth, for I am coming with divine visitation that will touch heaven and earth. Many will be swept into the kingdom of God, and My glory will pour out with signs and wonders both in heaven and [on] the earth!”

<<Read the whole message>>                *Top

**Note:  There is a popular teaching among many that there is nothing that still has to happen before Jesus returns for his church. Some teach that the Gospel reached the entire known world in the first century. But of course this doesn’t consider the millions that lived in the Americas which for me is a major problem for that theory.

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Day of Prayer for the Peace of Jerusalem

Join millions of Christians today all around the world praying for the peace of Jerusalem. Sponsored by more than 200,000 churches in 175 nations.

There is even a special 24 hour conference call prayer line.

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Ps 122:6-7: “Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: May those who love you be secure. May there be peace within your walls and security within your citadels.”

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Jerusalem: An Interview with Heidi Baker, Part Three

Here’s Chris Mitchell’s third and final with Heidi Baker in Jerusalem: Longing for Jerusalem and Jesus

The following is part of the Mitchell’s intro to this video:

“What’s God’s Heart for Jerusalem? How does lasting fruitfulness in ministry happen? These are some of the questions Heidi Baker answers…

Heidi’s passion for Jesus rings out as she talks about the joy of spending time with Him.”

*Top

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End-Times: Two Sides of the Coin

The Dome of the Rock and the Western Wall/ Zap...

(-Jerusalem via Wikipedia)

There are two articles that I read this last week which address an ‘end-times’ scenario from entirely different perspectives.

The first is an article I found today on WorldNetDaily: "Zero hour approaches" by Hal Lindsey.

Hal does what he is best at identifying how events in the Middle East are quickly progressing towards an end-time scenario. Iran is on the brink of having nuclear weapons and Hal cites the beginning of an Ezekiel end-time coalition with Russia and Iran in the lead against Israel.

Oh by the way, Hal didn’t mention this, but did anyone notice that Iran just this week put its first satellite up in space using its newest rocket? No I didn’t think so! This story should be as big as ‘sputnik’ was in the 50’s, but the news media is downplaying it and the possible implications for weapons delivery.

The Ezekiel 38-39 battle scenario now is beginning to fall in to place and coming at a time when we have a new administration that might blink when it comes to a possible confrontation with a nuclear power like Russia. Hal always does a great job at scaring the heck out of me!

The second article was published a couple of weeks ago but I just got around to reading it yesterday. It is the second part of a prophetic message for 2009 that I posted on in January: "The Last Days Anointing" by Loren Sandford.

The message that Loren Sandford brings is the flip side of the coin. While the world is literally going to hell, it is time for the church to rise up and finish the task–the gospel is to go into every nation with signs and wonders demonstrating the Kingdom of God.

While Lindsey and Sandford present two different perspectives, I find inspiration in both of them. After over 35 years of studying eschatology, all of the scriptures, and reading 100’s of books having to do with the ‘end-times’, I am of the opinion that no one has it completely nailed down.

I can find holes in every traditional approach–amil, postmil, premil: pretrib, midtrib, postrib, I like premil/prewrath probably the most. The point is, if it is published somewhere in some book than I am convinced that it is probably wrong in some way.

There are surprises ahead for the church in the last days, one of the reasons that God is raising up prophets again is to give vision to the church in these chaotic times. I know, what passes for prophecy and prophets today is imperfect and not always edifying. But just wait, a new generation of prophetic ministry is on the horizon.

I believe that the Second Coming will be similar to the first in that every single learned scholarly ‘Messianic’ expectation of the first century was proved to be wrong. The church is entering a new era when we will need to rely more closely on the Lord and it will no longer be good enough to continue doing things the way we have done them in the past.            *Top 

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