This is prophesied in Daniel 9:27 (read to the right) found in the Old Testament. We know that this individual called the abomination of desolation is the antichrist because Jesus identifies him so in the book of Matthew 24:15...“So when you see standing in the holy place (temple) the abomination that causes desolation, spoken of through the prophet Daniel - let the reader understand.”
What Must You Understand?
This time period of 7 years, identified as Tribulation, will mark the end of the world for all practical purposes. It can be best described as both catastrophic and apocalyptic. This is the time when God pours out His severe judgments on the earth. These are delineated as the seven Seal, seven Trumpet and seven Bowl judgments. Just the opening of the third seal, for example, speaks of a time when a man’s daily wage will only buy him a loaf of bread. In another example, the release of the first Trumpet judgment will cause a third of the trees and grass to be burned up. Interestingly, a newscast given on National Public Radio (NPR) in late 2008 reported that there were over 1,200 hundred active fires taking place in California alone.
During the Tribulation; famine, pestilence's, earthquakes, nuclear war, cosmic disturbances and extremely severe weather will cause three quarters (3/4) of the entire earth's population to perish. Based on today’s population of approximately 7 billion people, this means 5.75 billion people will die within a 7 year time span! So severe are God’s judgments, just as Jesus said, if the time was not cut short, no man would be able to survive. Again, I do not believe that man can fully comprehend how horrible the Tribulation will be. The bottom line is, you do not want to be here when it occurs.
After the last Trumpet judgment is exercised, as given in Rev. 11:15, we see the Antichrist come upon the scene as never before. The Antichrist will be the great deceiver, empowered by none other than Satan himself. He will be given power to bring forth miracles and supernatural wonders. He will deceive the world to believe he is Jesus Christ. In the middle of the Tribulation, 3-½ years from the time he orchestrated the 7 year peace treaty with Israel and the world, he will take over the rebuilt Temple in Jerusalem. His partner, the false prophet (whom many will believe is Elijah) desecrates the holy place by placing an image of the Antichrist therein. The false prophet is given power to give breath to the image of the antichrist. Not only that, the image can also speak and caused all who refused to worship the image of the antichrist to be killed.
Now comes a most important verse out of the book of Revelation which gives understanding to the title of this section.....
Therefore, what must you do if you miss the Rapture? Do not take the mark of the antichrist. Rev. 14: 9 makes this absolutely clear. For if you do, you will be destined to torment forever and forever, which in today's terminology is that place called hell.
It is believed that a microchip, smaller than even a grain of rice, is now available which can easily contain all of our personal information and is ready for use. Not only will those who receive the mark be able to buy and sell, but will most likely be tracked by global positioning systems (GPS). Truly, the antichrist will subjugate the world as no other dictator ever has. It will be his wanton desire to destroy all who do not worship him, the goal of Satan from time immorium.
Jesus stated that the events we are seeing today are but ‘birth pangs’ (read Matt. 24). In fact, today’s disasters actually will pale in comparison to those which will take place during Tribulation. But how close are we to the coming of Jesus? A key scripture answers this question in Matthew 24: 32,34....
In this scripture, most biblical scholars agree that Jesus is relating the symbol of the fig tree to Israel, which He cursed on the day when He was on His way to the Temple in Jerusalem wherein He was proclaimed as Hosanna (which means Savior) in the highest, yet was rejected by the Jewish religious leaders (Pharisees and Sadducees) that very same day! Then, on His way back from the Temple with His disciples, the fig tree Jesus cursed was dead and shriveled up.
We most certainly are “this generation” that is alive to have seen the fig tree become alive again (reborn) as seen in the rebirth of the nation of Israel in 1948. Therefore, Jesus tells us that the generation who is alive during that time will experience the coming of His return to earth.
The Most Important Decision You Will Ever Make
Because the possibility of Jesus coming for His believers, known as the Rapture, is so close, there can never be as an important time as right now to believe, receive and accept Him as your Lord and Savior. But even without taking the Rapture and coming Tribulation into consideration, we never know when our time on earth could end. If Jesus truly is the only way to gain entrance into heaven, as He so claims, than the consequences of not believing Him will be disastrous. This means that after your earthly life has come to an end, your eternal destination is fixed. As He Himself states, you will have either made a choice to go to heaven or......hell. Understand that hell was originally established for only satan and his angels (which are called demons). However, if we fail to receive Jesus for forgiveness of our sins, we cannot enter a holy heaven. Won’t you chose to receive Jesus today? He truly loves you.
As a comfort to those who receive Him, Jesus told His disciples about the times of the end....
* Here we have direct scriptural reference to the Rapture event, that those who are Christ's will be able to escape the Tribulation, the worst period of history this world will ever experience. What a blessing to those who know Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior.