The clear evidence of what is happening in our world today and the fulfillment ot many Biblical prophecies is a confirmation to me of the near return of Christ. There are many interpretations of the prophecies regarding the 2nd coming of Jesus Christ; however, the Bible clearly states that although no man knows the day or the hour of His coming — it does list many of the signs of the end times.
For example, the Bible refers to the Fig Tree budding. Most believe that this is a reference to Israel, which become a nation again in their own Land in 1948, after almost 2000 years of exile. (Luke 21:29-31.)
The ecological/geographic signs prophesied are that there would be earthquakes, floods and natural disasters’. Also a clear reference to this last century in prophesy that in the last days, ‘speed of travel and knowledge’, both would increase. To realize that for 6,000 years the fastest speed on earth was that of a galloping horse, then within 100 years we hove cars doing over 100 mph, airplanes over 1,000 km/h and rockets capable of interplanetary travel! And knowledge... well, mobile phones, computers and scientific technology are yesterday’s experience... Tomorrow’s emerging technology is almost frightening in the speed of its advance (Matt 24; Mark 13; Luke 21; Dan 12:4).
The Bible refers to wars — terror — distress — the death of one third of the population — armies attacking Jerusalem — children running riot and bringing fear to the streets of our cities — and the rise of terrorism creating world wide fear. Also that the Antichrist must be revealed, the Temple rebuilt in Jerusalem and false prophets and teachings within the Church which will destroy the faith of many. But the Gospel must be preached to every nation — before that ‘great and notable day of the Lord’ (Matt 24; Rev 9:15; Zech 12/14; Ezek 38/39; 2 Thess 2:3-4: Ezek 40-44; 2 Tim 4:3-4; 2 Thess 2:9-12; Joel 2:31.).
I believe in the literal and soon return of Christ to earth as the Messiah! Even some Jews accept the possibility of two Messiahs — son of Joseph who suffers and son of David as glorified King. We who accept the whole Bible, see these as fulfilled in one Man. He came first and was rejected, but will come again as sovereign Lord — the same Messiah — and we will recognize Him as the same Messiah by the wounds He will still carry as evidence. (Zech 12:10.)
The Bible speaks about the ‘Rapture’, which is the moment when Christ appears in the sky and those who have died believing in the Atonement rise from the dead first, followed by those of us who also believe but are still living, so that we shall be taken up to meet Him in the air, together with them. A glorious moment of re-union with our loved ones. as Paul says, ‘together with the Lord’ (1 Thess 4:73-77).
It is important for all believers to recognize the most important Biblical facts which are: — the physical and literal resurrection of all men after the return of Christ, followed by a day of judgment for both believer and sinner. For the believer the reward is eternal life because eternal salvation is only by faith in Christ — but for the sinner it is condemnation, because the Bible says that all have sinned and the greatest sin is rejection of Christ’s atonement. — Man himself cannot redeem human nature either by works or money — only Christ by His death and resurrection and completed at His return. No money can redeem the sinner, no pardon for sin before or after death, except through our acceptance of God’s sacrifice of His Son on our behalf — God’s only atonement for sin and the sinner! (John 3:18; 2 Cor 5:10; Heb 9:27-28; Rom 5:8-21).
We should be less worried about so-called ‘global warming’ and ecological change today, which Biblically, are largely irrelevant for those who believe in the near return of Christ. Much more important is the question of how to deal with man’s sin. Our present ecological and geological changes which are clearly forecast in the Bible as signs of the time of Christ’s return, all will be taken care of by His return to reign over all earth, when the earth will be healed and restored to become the Garden of Eden’, as God originally created, for the 1,000 years of the Millennium. Remember that for the first 2,000 years, until the time of Noah, there was no rain! Earth was watered by the dew—the ‘greenhouse effect’! (Gen 2:5,6; Rom 8:19-24; Isiah 65).
We need to remind ourselves that when Jesus was here on earth 2,000 years ago His main message was salvation, healing and a coming Kingdom. I appeal to those of you readers who live in the developed world. — Pause for a moment in your rush to gain prosperity and the re-distribution of the wealth at the world to the saints. — In your endless quest for new doctrines, new emotional/spiritual experiences. I wish that you could, as the founder at the Salvation Army once said, spend just 10 minutes in Hell Fire. Then maybe you would spare a thought for a world dying in sin, who will never receive an offer of salvation unless someone tells them — whose eternity without Christ is Hell itself.
It is important to remember the Biblical certainty that Jesus is coming back very soon. There will be clear signs that those who believe will recognize, but the end itself will be sudden. The Bible says the suddenness and division will be so sharp, that even with husband and wife in bed, or two persons working together — one will be taken, the other left, so there will be no final warning for a last minute repentance (Matt 24:36-44; Luke 12:39-40; I Thess 5:2-4).
Jesus preached the Gospel of the Kingdom repeatedly and strongly. So must we. The purpose of His return is to finally destroy the enemy, Satan and sin. The Millennium can only commence when Jesus finally becomes Lord of all the earth. The Bible says that during this period of Christ’s authority, there will be no sickness or untimely death, the lion will lie dawn with the lamb, earth will prosper, the deserts blossom, the devil imprisoned. So that the whole earth will be restored to what God intended it to be when He created it — a wonderful ‘Garden of Paradise’, with absolutely no evil present! (1 John 3:8; Isaiah 11; Isaiah 35:1-2.)
During the thousand years, the Bible says we will govern with Jesus. He Himself said that we shall be judged according to our faithfulness here on earth. Salvation is free, but heavenly rewards are earned. For the levels of our faithfulness in this life — we shall govern cities, receive mansions, or have everything burned up like straw because of our unfaithfulness, and only our lives be saved. The Bible says that some have their reward here: for others, the ‘unsung heroes’, reward is eternal (2 Tim 2:12; Luke 19:1l-26; Matt 24:45-51; 1 Cor 3:11-15).
Battle for Control of This World!
Who is the devil, Satan? Jesus described him as the prince of this world with power on earth. But God sent His Son to rescue the world from Satan’s power! That’s been the battle for the last 2000 years and we are part of this. It will end in a tremendous war, involving an army of 200 million and a third of the world’s population will die. — Revelation 9:16. But don’t be afraid — read the Book — Jesus wins! We know that literally the world, the EU, Africa, Asia, Australasia, China, America, all will come under Christ’s rule for 1,000 years! And we are in training now, to be the rulers together with Him! (John 12:31; Eph 2:2).
But at this moment the devil is fighting to control of all of us — through the world financial systems, through the moves towards one world government! Gordon Brown, as British Prime Minister in 2008, boasted that the economic crisis and climate change were ‘strategic’ in moving us rapidly towards their ultimate goal — one world government.
Tony Blair, with Mikhail Gorbachev, and with the support of the Pope, recently set up a multi-faith organization to bring together all religious faiths — ALL — in one religion! His idea is that it will center in Jerusalem where he currently represents the G20 — Europe, America, Russia — in negotiating a Middle East peace settlement. He is preparing the way far Antichrist — who will be accepted by all faiths as the Messiah! The world will believe the Antichrist is the Messiah!1
The Coming "Perfect Storm" by John Paul Jackson
Since the turn of this decade I have periodically spoken of difficulties that are coming to this nation and the Earth. I have on many occasions, said that from 2009 or 2010 forward, things will become increasingly difficult. I have been praying and hoping that what I am about to write may be averted. However, I am now concerned that without prophetic people speaking up, we will not play our redemptive part in bringing change in this nation and other nations for the advancement of the Glorious Kingdom of God
I write this article with a heavy heart. However I believe you will be given wisdom by the Lord about how to process and potentially thrive in coming "Perfect Storm" that is brewing in this nation and beyond. (Authors note: I have received the same sense. I have included this word from the Lord as a confirmation for what I believe will happen as well. The most important aspect is that we, His people, prepare for the coming storm. By seeking Him and having our lamps trimmed, not only may our house stand in the storm, but I personally believe if we're wise and faithful stewards He will have us prosper both in natural and supernatural ways - that is - if we do it for the right reasons, which is to advance His kingdom here on earth before His return!)
Five Elements of the Brewing Perfect Storm
As in the movie "The Perfect Storm", the storm I see coming to the United States is a combination of more than one element, and when the elements unite, the storm becomes exponentially more dangerous. However, unlike the movie, this storm is not just a storm of merging weather patterns. This storm is worse; it involves five different elements: religion, politics, economics, war and geophysical events.
At times these five elements will be so intertwined that it will be difficult, if not impossible, to distinguish which events are driving a particular manifestation of the storm. Massive problems in these five areas will come often, or in combination, and sometimes repeatedly. Each element has potentially several events that will have national and international ripple effects. Some ripples will be worse than others depending on where you live and how you make living. Different areas of the United States will experience different severities. Some will experience more economic elements, others more geophysical elements, some will experience all elements. Remember, it is the combination and the rapidity that will make the storm problematic. Also, this does not mean all five elements will hit at the most devastating levels. For example, on a scale of 1 - 10 with 10 being the worst, one element may strike at a six while another strikes at an eight. It is the particular combinations of elements - the proximity of each element, as well as the intensity of each element - that will make this difficult and seem to last so long. This storm will not be short-lived; it will come in waves, one after another.
Why is the Storm Coming?
This storm is coming because the Church (the Body of Messiah) is no longer the backbone of this nation. From our inception, the Christian faith has been the plumb line of decisions made at all levels of life. The Christian founding of this nation is what makes it different from every other nation other than Israel. Other nations may have become Christian in their focus, but none was initially formed with Christianity as the core of its DNA.
The Church is to make known God’s manifold wisdom to the world. This demonstration to the heavens is not accomplished by speaking to those powers but through righteous living. How we live opens or closes doors for Satan to legally afflict us and even rule over us via leaders who do not know the ways of God. From Adam and Eve through today the actions of humankind have given room for the enemy to strike and attack us. Anytime there is an increased distance between God and humanity, it leaves room for attack to come and for principalities and powers of the air (rulers of darkness) to take up residence. The longer dark powers reside over an area, the more the people begin to call right wrong and wrong right. Here in the United States, leaders arise from the people; in other words, as the people believe and think, so do the leaders. The lines between right and wrong, as well as the holy and profane, become blurred. The way to God through Jesus and the Cross is no longer seen as an absolute.
We are living in the days of Ezekiel and Jeremiah, who wrote that God can bring disaster on our nation if we continually choose to walk according to our own plans (Jeremiah 18:7-12).
What Are Some Things That Are Coming?
Political Issues: I saw an attempt on President Obama’s life by Islamic extremists. The public did not know the assassins were Muslims. The purpose of this attack was to make it look racially-motivated. I then saw incredible race riots in the streets. We have to pray for Obama’s protection from assassination plots.
Geophysical Issues: In time, water will be more expensive than oil, and several cities will evacuate thousands. Because there is not enough water to meet their needs (Amos 4:7). Earthquakes will strike not only coastal areas but devastate the Midwest. I saw thunderstorms with huge hail, 24 inches of rain in 24 hours, three feet of snow in six hours, tornadoes in unusual places, some with winds of more than 350 miles per hour. There will be an unexpected blight that will hit various hybrid seed crops and weaken the yield. This, along with the drought and devastation from storms, will cause a national food shortage.
War Issues: Iran and Russia will unite, putting aside their religious and political differences because of a discovery of a genetic link between the two. I don’t know exactly what this means, but this discovery will create a kinship between them. A dirty bomb will explode in a coastal city here in the United States, Israel will bomb Iran, and anti-Semitism will escalate as fuel costs soar (Jeremiah 18:11).
Religion Issues: I saw a period of time coming when God was going to expose rampant immorality in the leadership of large churches and ministries in this country. The government will become increasingly hostile towards the tax-exempt status of churches and ministries, including a push to start taxing property (of non-profits)
Economics: I see commercial buildings remaining vacant around the US. In fact, I saw large stores, being used by the government to house people who’ve lost their homes and livelihood.
Four Things the Church Must Do
First, the Church must return to knowing God and His ways rather than just knowing about God. We have replaced power with programs, revelation with administration and the Father’s heart with organizational skills.
Second, the Church must learn how to contend for the faith again. We are weak, and we fall away so easily when crisis is not at hand. We have not been tested, and we have lost our resolve. We understand little of the adversary’s plans. We do not know how to debate our faith without becoming angry and thus we have so few strong, clear, godly voices in political arenas. We have lost our witness - the witness that convicts others and strongly testifies that God is still God and is very, very real. We have lost the witness that demonstrates that God is a personal God in a very impersonal world. The witness that says, “What I do proves God exists.”
Third, the Church must return to the love of God’s Word and the belief that it is infallible and inerrant. This would include the conviction, understanding and knowledge that God is absolute, and there is only one way to know Him: through Jesus the Messiah. We need a new revelation that God’s power is unlimited, His knowledge is unending, His presence is with us always and He never changes. We have made God far too small, and our lives prove it.
Fourth, we will need to declare sacred and solemn assemblies of repentance and corporate fasting in many parts of this nation - a time set aside for rending our hearts before God. We are going to have to:
•Turn to God with all our heart •Fast with weeping over our sin •Rend our hearts •Call sacred assemblies •Sanctify the congregation •Assemble the elders •In addition, the priests, who minister to the LORD will weep at the Altar of God
“Who knows if He will turn and relent, and leave a blessing behind Him.” Joel 2:12-17
Crisis is the Fruit of Following the Wrong God
God allows calamities to happen in order to draw us to Himself. What does that mean? It means that God allows us to reap the fruit of the god we serve. Walking in God’s ways brings blessings and fullness of life, while walking in the ways of the “god of this world” will bring the fruit of the god of this world: decay, destruction, deterioration and ultimately death. We make our choice, then the choice makes us.
Throughout Scripture, when crises hit the people of God, they turned their hearts to Him, and He heard and took action on their behalf.
May the people of the United States seek the Lord ... and find Him. Remember we still have the promise that if we turn from our wicked ways, God will heal our land. All through Scripture, those who gave to God’s purposes were shielded by His hand during strenuous and difficult times. God will not overlook your faithfulness.
Author’s Analysis: In combination with this word given on Sid Roth's newsletter and a DVD which covered the subject more extensively, I would like to add some additional comments.
John Paul Jackson stated that the Lord conferred to him that these events would take place between 2008 and 2018, encompassing a full decade. He states in the DVD, which was recorded in Dec. 2008, that there are now signs of the “Perfect Storms” approach. He explicitly mentioned that it isn’t here yet. However, “the sense is in the air, as though we can see the clouds approaching.” He mentions that during his prayer time, he often heard “the woes of 2012”. I believe this lines up very pointedly with the many predicted and prophesied events that are expected to unfold in the year of 2012. This would also involve political, economic, religious and geophysical events that affect the entire world. In particular, the economic predictions appear to line up very specifically in this regard. This is especially noted by the prediction made by Richard Mogey and his research on the study of economic cycles which concludes a most significant economic downturn in 2012. John also added, due to severe economic deterioration, stop - gap financial measures will no longer have effect (they’re not having much effect even now, considering the massive infusion of government stimulus taking place), causing severe inflation. This will very seriously hurt those on fixed incomes (the elderly). I truly believe that the Lord wishes to position us to become a light to the future broken who will lose it all, be touched by our Christian witness and then accept the One we all love and cherish.
John states that he believes times of severe drought will effect certain parts of the country. When he said this, I felt that the west was going to experience the brunt of this judgment.
John also speaks of hearing the Lord say that a “dirty” nuclear bomb would be released in a port city in America. This would be the second time I heard this. Richard Madison, an evangelist, wrote in his book “Raised From the Dead” that he "heard from the Lord" the same catastrophe (although not specifying it to be a port city). Moreover, Paul Williams as mentioned in chapter 3 under "Dirty Nukes" in this book also has credible information/sources that suggest a very high probability of a dirty nuclear bomb being released in our country. No doubt, if such an event where to take place, very serious social and economic upheaval would follow. In light of this, John adds that he “saw” the worst riots taking place this country has ever experienced, bringing forth martial law. It would eventually lead to a virtual dictatorship as the Emergency Powers Act is instituted. Due to this situation, people will be leaving the cities and rural land will become valuable, which I too have envisioned.
John also mentioned that nuclear material will be released in Israel (did not mention how; via atomic bomb, dirty nuclear device, etc.). This would cause Israel to strike with a missile attack, and bring Iran into attacking Israel with the consequences of a severe oil crisis, which will only bring additional economic woes and global chaos.
Lastly, in the DVD, John specifically stated that he does not believe this is the Tribulation. However, he did mention that we may be living in the time of “Jacob’s Trouble”. If this is so, then the very time of Tribulation will be upon this world, as this is exactly what Jacob’s Trouble refers to. And if this is true, the coming of Messiah is truly at hand!
"Urgent: The Court of Heaven is in Session” by Larry Randolph
In 2005, I was visited by an Angel of the Lord who showed me a string of events that would unfold beginning in 2007 through the end of 2012. One of the most striking predictions was his proclamation that, "The economy of this nation will go down a long, dark hill." Among many other things, the angel also informed me that in the same year I saw the deaths of many Hollywood celebrities, it would signify the end of an era and beginning of change for the nation. I shared these things in a few meetings, but felt that I should not yet release the details of the visitation on a national scale.
"What God Told Me in July of 2008"
Then in July of 2008, the Lord informed me that a "perfect storm" would hit the nation in the middle of September and that it would be the beginning of the economic collapse the angel revealed to me in 2005. Again, I was reluctant to draw national attention to the coming events and purposely restricted the prophetic word to a small number of conferences. Although the prediction came to pass around the 15th of September 2008, part of my reluctance to give the prophetic word was due to much of the negativity that is often associated with a number of prophetic ministries. As one called to encourage the Church prophetically, I tend to shy away from anything that sounds like "gloom and doom" and often wait for God to show me the redemptive value of what is happening.
"I Now Feel an Urgency to SOUND THE ALARM!"
That being said, however, I now feel an urgency to sound the alarm that unprecedented events are approaching us on many levels. We are at the end of the "holding pattern" we have experienced this year and are about to enter another season of change and great shaking. In fact, there is a "super-shift" coming that is truly bittersweet and will ultimately reveal the best of times and the worst of times. In view of the sobering times we are approaching, I have decided to release a prophetic word that I recently delivered at Grace Center, my home church in Franklin, Tennessee.
As you'll hear in the prophecy, the shift begins this September (of the year 2009), continuing throughout October, and will gain both momentum and velocity by December 31st. Interestingly, the 31st is a "blue moon" night that is an astronomical rarity - thus the phrase "once in a blue moon."
Also, a part of my decision to release the following prophecy is related to yet another encounter I had in August. Around the middle of the month, I had a vision of a 5.0 earthquake that would mark the beginning of a critical shift. I also saw a greater shaking that was to follow in the near future. The next day, I called my friend Bob Jones who confirmed that he was also feeling "a trembling" in the Earth. Several days after our conversation, there was a 5.0 earthquake in Alaska on August 19th, which confirmed to me the importance of the vision. (Reported on Fox News August 19, 2009: 5.0-Magnitude Earthquake Rattles Anchorage, Alaska.)
And, if I am interpreting correctly what I feel and see, there is yet a seven-fold shaking of greater magnitude coming that will produce enormous and perhaps catastrophic disruptions on economic, political, geophysical, atmospheric, and spiritual levels.
God is "Unfailingly Redemptive"
However, the good news is that God is unfailingly redemptive, no matter what events unfold in the world. According to the Prophet Isaiah, when darkness invades the Earth, the glory of God is certain to arise upon His people. Although we are entering uncertain and turbulent waters, remember that the challenges we face can affect us for good or for bad. When God shook the fountains of the deep in Noah's day, for example, the flood had both negative and positive implications for that generation. For those outside the ark it was devastating, but for those inside the ark it was liberating. So depending on your posture in Christ, the coming days can either be the best of times or the worst of times.
Authors Analysis: This word is very similar to the one given by John Paul Jackson. Given the similar consensus and veritable confirmation not only of the prophetic word, but also that secular sources have stated the same (economic catastrophe), I believe this word to be on target. The implications of this truth is that we, the body of Christ, need to be sober and vigilant as never before. We truly need to prepare and gird up for the coming difficult days. I most heartedly agree with Larry that this season will mark the best of time or the worst, very dependent on how we, as the body of Christ, will position ourselves and respond to what is coming. Certainly, if the Lord would grace us with His coming, will it not be the most incredible of times, for the Christian that is? However, if He tarries or delays, which many believers think He has, then we need to position ourselves to take advantage of the time we are given and living in. We truly need to adopt a mindset similar to Paul the Apostle, wherein he was able to be content in all things. Let us also clothe ourselves with this attitude and let the light of Jesus Christ shine brightly in an ever decaying world.
Warning from Dave Wilkerson
Before presenting the prophecy given by Dave Wilkerson, I would like to establish his credibility if per chance readers are not familiar with this man of God. Dave Wilkerson is best known for taking the gospel to New York city gangs in the 1950’s, which eventually led to the writing of a book and subsequent movie titled, The Cross and the Switchblade.
Most recently in 2001, God warned Dave that a calamity was coming. It was reported that not only Dave, but the entire Times Square Church (which he shepherds) felt an intense burden and significant heaviness that began early August 2001. So overwhelming was this burden, that all normal church services and programs were suspended, with only intercessory prayer bathing the church. A few weeks later, Dave felt the Holy Spirit was prompting him and his church to make sandwiches, and a lot of them. On Sept. 10, 2001, they stayed up practically all night making thousands of sandwiches. At 8:46 AM, the first jet crashed into the World Trade Center. The rest is history and God provided for many shocked and hungry souls in downtown New York City following the horrendous aftermath of 9/11. Based on his accuracy of hearing from God, it might be worth for us to consider the following “word” that Dave received from the Lord.
The Prophecy, by Dave Wilkerson (given 3/25/10)
“AN EARTH-SHATTERING CALAMITY IS ABOUT TO HAPPEN. IT IS GOING TO BE SO FRIGHTENING, WE ARE ALL GOING TO TREMBLE, EVEN THE GODLIEST AMONG US."
For 10 years I have been warning about a thousand fires coming to New York City. It will engulf the whole megaplex, including areas of New Jersey and Connecticut. Major cities all across America will experience riots and blazing fires such as we saw in Watts, Los Angeles years ago.
There will be riots and fires in cities worldwide... There will be looting including Times Square, New York City... What we are experiencing now is not a recession, not even a depression.....We are under God’s wrath. In Psalm 11 it is written: “God is judging the raging sins of America and the nations. He is destroying the secular foundations.”
In Psalm 11:6, David warns, “Upon the wicked he will rain snares (coals of fire)…..fire…..burning wind….will be the portion of their cup.” Why? the psalmist David answered, “Because the Lord is righteous” (v. 7). This is a righteous judgment - just as in the judgments of Sodom and in Noah’s generation.
WHAT SHALL THE RIGHTEOUS DO? WHAT ABOUT GOD’S PEOPLE?
First, I give you a practical word I received for my own direction. If possible store a 30-day supply of nonperishable food, toiletries and other essentials. In major cities, grocery stores are emptied in an hour at the sign of an impending disaster.
I will behold our Lord on his throne, with his eye of tender, loving kindness watching over every step I take trusting that he will deliver his people even through floods, fires, calamities, tests, trials of all kinds (remember Daniel, Meschech, and Abenigo).
Note: I do not know when these things will come to pass, but I know it is not far off I have unburdened my soul to you. Do with the message as you choose.
Authors Analysis: We are now achieving multiple confirmations, which speaks volumes insofar as credibility. Both John Paul Jackson, Larry Randolph, among others, are sensing or have powerfully heard from the Holy Spirit that a severe economic downturn can be expected to occur soon, amongst other potentially catastrophic events. Again, this would not be surprising if we would experience a “perfect storm”, where a confluence of events can spark a series of disasters in a domino effect (Iran bombs Israel, North Korea attacks South Korea, Al Quieda launches a serious terrorist attack, etc.). I believe that not only can such an event take place because God has spoken it, but there is serious evidence and material support for this to occur as has been presented in this web-book. Moreover, we have also presented credible information about the existence of "dirty nukes" which could be set-off in up to 10-12 cities simultaneously through an Islamic Fifth Column. Besides, such events have been "envisioned" by men of God and forms a significant prophetic word that supports Jesus' prophecies as given in the scriptures about the "signs of the times". What this indicates is a very important warning. No, we don't know the time or day of even such events taking place. However, I believe with the evidence before us and the multiple prophetic voices that are sounding the alarm, we need to be prepared for what possibly could come and most important, be prepared for the Lord and what He would have us do.
My Awakening to His Soon Coming
It was not until I was 39 years of age that I became enraptured by the amazing grace of God, being first loved by Him whereby He wrapped His wonderful arms around my heart and allowed me to receive His precious Son, Jesus. I know that it was the prayers of my wife and her extended Christian family that paved the way for me to be able to enter into the kingdom at such a late age. From that moment on, and to this day, I am still in awe about the reality of God’s Son, Jesus Christ, coming as the pure lamb of God, to freely forgive me of my sins (what a gift) and make me a co-heir with Jesus in the Kingdom of God. What a salvation!
Within a few months of my born-again experience, I pondered about the truths of the Kingdom which I had been in disagreement about and even opposition for most of my life. Not that I had an excuse, but this opposition was most certainly supported by my education, which promoted a scientific and atheistic world view through the exposure of “experts” such as Darwin, Freud, Kant, Neitzche, to name a few. A few months after my "new birth" I asked Jesus why there was apparently such scant evidence for His reality. As I asked this question, I felt He put it in my heart to investigate this matter and write a book about it. I agreed to do so. It was only a matter of weeks that He began to place troves and treasures of information before me to do just this.
One of the areas that He placed a keen interest within was the study of endtime prophecy. I was extremely blessed to have been introduced to a man of God who the Lord placed on my path in the quest of obtaining the information I needed. Pastor Skip Simonds compiled a tape study titled, “End Time Prophecy” which established the foundation I needed in this area and led me to pursue this study further. I am extremely thankful to both the Lord and individuals such as Pastor Skip, Grant Jeffery, Hal Lindsey, Perry Stone and a trove of others for their dedication and enthusiasm for compiling such abundant and rich material, which led to the first writing of my book titled, “The Evidence” back in 1995. The initial work included the most recent apologetic information as well as endtime material. Under the recommendation from a publisher who initially had interest to publish this work, I culled the information and made it more subject specific. From this came two publications, one which was titled “The Evidence” and the other, “Signs of the Times”. The book you are reading today is a rewriting and updated version of "Signs of the Times".
It was in the first year of my new birth as a son of the Most High God that an event took place which galvanized the very core of my being into believing that the Lord Jesus was coming back to earth SOON! In January of 1990, in a small church near the city of Worcester, MA, my wife and I were in pre-service prayer for that Sunday’s service. In the midst of prayer, the Lord spoke to my heart and asked me to reach for my Bible which was on the floor before me, and asked that I open it. In so doing, I immediately came to the book of Joel. As I sensed His desire to have me read this book, so I began. I started with the first verse in Chapter one and began to read. As I continued, I pondered what the Lord wanted me glean from this reading. He prompted me to continue on. Then, when I got to Joel 1:15, the words seemed to jump from the page, as if the Lord were “audibly” speaking the very words I was reading.
After reading this verse, I experienced a premonition that the Lord was coming very, very SOON! I was awestruck. I couldn’t wait to tell Cindy, my wife, what the Lord had conferred. As soon as we got in the car to go home, I shared with her what happened. Her reply was similar to, “Oh, that’s nice”. And as I spoke this forth to my new friends in Christ, most did not seem as concerned about it as I. Little did I realize that since they did not experience this revelation as I had, they had no sense or unction towards its imminence. Thereafter, I was a little more judicious in how I would share this news. Over time, it was as though the Lord had to remind me about this heralded event since it seemed life was going on as from before, just like Peter spoke of in his epistle (2 Peter 3:2). Yet, the Lord has been faithful to confirm this truth many times over. I would like to share a few of these confirmations. Certainly, this book would be one of them.
Three months after this most amazing experience, Cindy (my wife) and I went on our second trip to Florida, to finalize details regarding our planned move to the Sarasota-Bradenton area from Massachusetts. It was on that trip that we stopped at a church which also had a Christian bookstore. I was surprised when I saw a book titled, I Predict By 2000 AD, written by Dr. Lester Sumrall, published in 1987. Not only did he accurately predict the fall of the USSR, but begged his readers to prepare for the coming of the Lord as we approach the last day of the week. To quote Dr. Sumrall, “We are in the Saturday night of time; Sunday morning will be upon us. Sunday morning is the Sabbath, which speaks to us of the millennial reign of the Lord Jesus.” This so aptly alludes to the Apostle Peter’s second epistle wherein he states, "that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day" (2 Peter 3:8) as it relates to the great Sabbath week of creation until the end of time, known to be a total of 7,999.99.... years.
Lastly, I also had the opportunity to hear Jack Hayford, an internationally respected man of God, speak about his “vision” at the Azusa Conference held in 1992. As Jack Hayford comments on his vision, “I was praying in my study to return to the pulpit for the morning service at Church On the Way, when all of a sudden, without anticipation, I (Jack Hayford) saw the Lord beginning to rise from His seat, at the right hand of the Father. It was obvious to me that the Lord would have to rise from His throne before He could come forth. And the Lord spoke to me these words, “What you are seeing, my son, is I am beginning now to rise in preparation for My second coming.” Although Pastor Hayford did not give a time frame as to the Lord’s return, his vision was part of his message which was titled “Preparing For God’s Next Suddenly”. Isn’t the “Next Suddenly” to be His coming, especially for His Church?
Of course, these are not the only men and women who have been given the “sense” that the return of our Lord is at hand. I believe the Lord has spoken too many of you regarding this most blessed hope. His Spirit goes to and fro the earth speaking to those whose hearts are open to this awesome event. Undoubtedly, the Magi must have “sensed” the same at Jesus’ first advent as well as Joseph and Mary (and family), John the Baptist and his father, Zacharias. Besides these, we find that Simeon (read Luke 2:26) was extremely blessed by the Holy Spirit to know he would not die before he personally had seen Jesus.
It is in this heart that I wish to express my deepest belief and admonition to the body of Christ - that “we not sleep or to be in darkness” as so many are. It is with a heavy heart to see the masses on the road to hell, taking along with them some of the brethren who have not harkened to being sober and preparing for the day of His coming. I would like to repeat Dr. Tim LaHaye’s position that I believe we all need to wrap our heart and mind around relative to the timing of the Lord’s appearance, that, “One thing is certain, our generation has more reason to believe Christ could Rapture His church in our lifetime than any generation in the almost 2,000 years of church history…”. If Dr. LaHaye would be so kind to allow me to substitute just one word in his statement, which I most certainly embrace, it would be “our generation” to “this generation” which I believe is the operative word of the Lord regarding the time of Jesus’ coming.
Because the grace of our Lord has been so good, I wanted to share with you the most incredible, exciting, phenomenal and wondrous event for all Christians to look forward to! The coming of Messiah! In a sense, it is truly hard to believe. Yet, it is the burden of the Lord that I wish to share with you. I know by my tears and weeping that Jesus loathes the day when He will have to open the first seal of judgment upon unregenerate man, whom He also loves intensely. That appointed time (see Daniel 8:19) will begin the terrible day of God’s wrath defined as Tribulation. It is imperative that all mankind be brought to a place of repentance and humbling before the coming of Tribulation and the Lord. So was it in Jesus’ first advent, so is it today. As Isaiah first spoke of this prophecy regarding John the Baptist (in Isaiah 40:3)
Again, there are so many dear and precious saints who believe that the day of the Lord is near. In that respect, I would like to share a special event that took place which helped to renew my “sense” of His near return and added a "spark" to the writing of this book. In October of 2009, the Lord powerfully indicated that He wanted us to partake in the Feast of Tabernacles held in Jerusalem, Israel that year. We had made lodging at the Jerusalem Panorama for our stay. Upon our arrival, we learned that they offered a nightly dinner on the top floor, which provided a beautiful view of the Temple Mount. When we arrived at the restaurant, we noticed a few people in addition to a large group dining there. We enjoyed our meal greatly and when we had finished, my wife commented that she thought she heard two older ladies in this group speaking Dutch. As I listened more intently, I agreed with her and on our way out, greeted the elderly ladies who indeed were from Holland. Our discussion became very animated as they told us how the Lord had directed them to minister and be “Watchwomen” for Israel. We felt the Lord had placed a similar calling upon us and was one of the main reasons we were in Israel during the Feast. We later learned that this was confirmed during the International Christians Embassy’s Jerusalem’s Feast of Tabernacle Convention. It was during this convention that Robert Stearns of Eagle Wings Ministries held a convocation for those called to be Watchman for Israel to which we readily responded. As we were discussing such matters, one of the ladies privately told us that the Lord told her some time ago that she would not see death before His return (much like Simeon). As she said this, it was as though the Lord was reaffirming the same sense that I have had for the last 20 years. That is, His arrival to earth will take place in “this generation”.
Even more remarkable was that I have also had the opportunity to hear another elderly lady whose name I have liberty to reveal whom the Lord spoke the same words! Ms. Elaine Knadle of Jacksonville, Florida who has been a most daring missionary to Israel and Egypt numerous times was also told that she would not see death before the return of Jesus Christ! By way of such testimonies, I thankfully do not feel as one lone voice crying out in the wilderness, “Prepare Ye the Way of the Lord”. I am thankful that the Lord told Amos to tell His prophets that He would not act before He spoke the Word of the Lord to them. He truly has put together such a precious "cloud of witnesses".
My prayer and hope is that the Lord’s people will prepare themselves to make ready the way of the Lord. Never has there been a more critical time in this regard. Lastly, I would like to emphasize that it is possible that Jesus Christ could tarry a full decade from a 70 year generation which would be 80 years, based on Psalm 90:10 (or any amount of time for that matter, as He is sovereign)....
The next full generation afterwards would be the 100 year generation which would take place on 2048. However, due to the number of prophecies fulfilled, the coalescing of events, the coming of dire times as even predicted by secular analysts, the signs of the times and so many other factors , we need to believe and live with the expectation that there can be a high probability of Jesus coming “any moment now”.
Having lived in both Arkansas and Oklahoma for a number of years, I became familiar with the dangers of tornadoes for which different warnings were assigned. The first level was known as the tornado watch. This was where weather conditions were extremely favorable for tornadoes to develop and appear. The next level was the tornado sighting, when an individual or others would sight a developed tornado. Finally, the last tornado warning took place when the alarm sounded in the community of a tornado enroute, warning the residents to take cover or flee. I would liken the time we are in now to being in a tornado watch. The “signs” are in place and just right for Jesus to.....
Yes Jesus, even so, Marantha. Thank you for the comfort of these words.
A Happy Easter Story
A few weeks after Easter of 2010, my wife gave me an account of a testimony communicated thru Mark and Patty McWilliams, missionaries to Zimbabwe. I would like to reprint their communication as an encouragement as well as proof of how great our God is. Enjoy!
Happy Easter Friends,
This story come from our co-workers in Zimbabew on the Zimbabwe Evangelism Team with us. Isaac Mabvumba is a national past and a personal friend of theirs. I thought Easter would be a great time to read about what is going on in parts of the world and in this man’s life. He is Risen.
SOME THINGS THAT ARE AMAZINGLY, MIRACULOUSLY WONDERFUL
During the Baptist Convention, Evangelist Isaac Mabvumba came by this morning to share two stories with us that are incredible and show that despite the work of the evil one, God is at work in a mighty way in Zimbabwe.
Five different pastors went to five different congregations. Isaac said he walked up to one small village and it seemed that everything was normal. Chickens running around, a kid chasing them. Mother was working, father was in the hut listening to the radio. As he walked up to the house the man saw him, turned off the radio and came to meet him. The man said, “last night I dreamed about you. I recognize your face. You don’t have to say anything to me. I am ready to receive Jesus.”
On Sunday, more than 400 believers from the five churches gathered for a special gatherng for a special time of worship. Ninety-nine new believers were baptized as a part of the worship service (if all who wanted to be baptized had been able to come, it would have been about 140 people according to Isaac).
The second story Isaac shared happened about two weeks ago in the Mberengwa area. A man died, who happens to be a relative of Isaac’s. Isaac wasn’t able to go to the funeral, but his brother-in-law did and came back telling him what happened. The man who died was an unbeliever. He died about 4:00 PM and his body was left till morning. Then the next day his body was bathed and wrapped for burial and laid out on the table in his hut so mourners could pay their respects. About 4:00 PM that afternoon (24 hours after he died) the body was lying in the hut. A goat had been killed and was cooking to feed the mourners. Others were digging the grave. The coffin had not yet arrived but should soon so the burial could take place. All of a sudden, there was singing from the hut. Here are the words which were sung.
“Kana Jesu achidzoka (When Jesus returns)
Uchaunganidza (He will gather up)
Mabwe ose akanaka (all the precious stones)
Anobgwinya sei (that shine so brightly)
Sechiedza chezuva (like the light of the sun)
Anovaima zvikuru (they shine very brightly)
Pakorona yaJesu (On the crown of Jesus)
Anobwinya sei (they shine so brightly)
Vana vose, vana vose (All the children, all the children)
Vanoda She Jesu (That love the Lord Jesus)
Ndiwo mabwe akanaka (we are the precious stones)
Anobwinya sei (that shine so brightly)
The dead man had come back to life and was singing! Of course this caused great shock and excitement among the mourners. Many ran away in fright. But the man’s wife went in the hut and unwrapped him. Later as people returned, he told his story. He said the when he died, he came to the gates of heaven and that it was a real place. But he could not go in because he did not have the key (obviously, anyone by now should know that this key is Jesus, “I am the door") He was told that he needed to go back to complete the task of his life. So, he said, “I’ve come back to say that from now on I plan to worship the Lord and serve Him. I will have nothing more to do with praying to the ancestor spirits. I will tell everyone who will listen to me about Jesus.
The people were amazed and word of what God has done has spread over the area!