The Lord came and took His children home. Realizing you overslept, you hurried yourself out of bed. You looked for your mate but…hmmm… mate is nowhere to be found. You saw the clothes on the floor and figured your mate rushed off to work. Mate has to be at work much earlier and never bothers to wake you up to say goodbye. Well, you get dressed and rushed yourself to work. You got there, but for some reason the person that was to open the building hadn’t made it in. Hmmm. How long will it take you to realize that something is amiss? Well, it’s a good thing that none of that happened while you were sleeping.
So, should the above happen anytime soon, and I am not saying that it will, only that if it should – can you be confident that Jesus is coming back for you? That’s a question I ask myself quite often. Am I prepared for the return of Christ? After all the Scripture says He will come as a thief in the night. So, I took my question to God. And God in His faithfulness did not fail to help me understand the need for preparation and prepare. Because that day – that day – when Jesus returns for His church will come to pass. And lately, every time I listen to the news I can’t help but feel that His return is ever so close. Sure, we’ve been in the end times, forever. And the return of Christ is one day closer. I accept that. Nevertheless, the Trump years really opened my eyes to the reality that is the end times and January 6, was a climactic point to that realization. I don’t think any author on the subject has even come close to understanding the reality of what will be the end times. It’s going to beat any Hollywood blockbuster.
What a year!
For me, this past year has been a wake up call not only to my walk with Christ, but to the perils of the Pharisees, false doctrine and that wide road that leads to destruction. This year has been one of Christian leaders using the pulpit to mock governmental leadership, or to claim that Christians are losing their religious and civil liberties. Many outright rebelled against state and local leaders, encouraging their membership to do likewise. I have to confess that sort of behavior was not something I expected from fellow Christians. I was blindsided. I mean it was completely contrary to the teachings of Jesus.
So, like many others, watching professing Christians launch an attack on democracy was very unsettling. However, that event drove home the truth that we may all call ourselves Christians, people of God, believers, conservatives, or whatnots, but – many of us have believed a false gospel, or somewhere along our journey we took a wrong turn. And because of the veil that may still remain – we may be clueless to the deception. And to the destruction that may follow. And sadder still, is the number of end times prophesy groups that feed that deception. It’s a real conundrum. But you know what? The Lord reminded me that the road to heaven is a narrow road. Very few people find it, much less look for it. And because the road is narrow there’s not as many people on that road as in the wide road.
“Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.”Matthew 7:13-14
“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs which indeed appear beautiful outwardly, but inside are full of dead men’s bones and all uncleanness.”Matthew 23:27
“And do this, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep; for now our salvation is nearer than when we first believed.”Romans 13:11
Spiritually speaking, these days do feel more like the end times than thirty years ago. Not so much because of moral decline, because the Scriptures speak to that, but because of the growth of these megachurches and pretty boy pastors, almost flirtatious, and women pastors that, to me, don’t seem sincere. To me, some of these women don’t come across as zealous for the things of God. They seem like they crave celebrity status. That’s just me. I don’t know their heart. Anyway, there’s a lot going on in this world that makes it appear that we are in the end times. Read your Bibles, it’s going to be bad!
Anyway, the politics of this nation do not bother me, because I trust that God appoints leaders to accomplish His will. My biblical directive is to pray for my leaders and submit to their authority. When the time comes that I am asked to deny Christ or die, well… I guess I will meet my Savior sooner that I thought. What does bother me is the Pharisee. Why? Jesus warned us about the Pharisees. I’ve blogged on the Pharisee in prior posts. The Pharisees do all their works to be seen by men (Matthew 23:5). The use of social media became a double-edged sword. Well, no one had to prophesy about the rise of Trumpism and Christian nationalism. The fact that many Christian leaders were aligning with this notion was quite evident. I could see the danger with my own eyes. Perhaps, the Lord allowed me to see it happening. I have to admit that I still don’t understand why Christian leaders were so drawn to Trump. From what I read of his life, it was the antithesis of Christianity. It still baffles this mind, but today, my thoughts linger to the fallout from Trump fanaticism.
“Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap.”Galatians 6:7
I do wonder if Christians, as they stood on the steps of the U.S. Capitol, as they forced their way into the building on January 6 understood that this Scripture also applied to them.
Judas was one of the Apostles
This is where my understanding led me. There’s been speculation over who the Antichrist could be, or where he is likely to come from. There’s a plethora of writings on end times prophesy, but it’s speculation. And, I love that the boldness of the late, great Rich Mullins when he said,
“We were given the Scriptures to humble us into realizing that God is right, and the rest of us are just guessing.”Rich Mullins
I don’t doubt or deny that some people may have some spiritual insight into the end times. I don’t know. But I had never considered that this individual, the Antichrist, could rise through the Christian ranks. I prayed asking God for understanding to this idea of this individual being one of us, like Judas. It made sense, that a Trump character placed on a pedestal, could do all the dirty work for the Pharisees and they get all the praise for saving the world from the evil democrats, and such. I’m like, that’s what the Pharisees asked Pilate and Herod to do. They wanted these Roman leaders to execute Jesus, but neither could find any fault in Him much less one worthy of execution. You know the story. This only made me realize how dangerous the Pharisee truly is…and doubly dangerous are his minions. We don’t know anything about the identity of the Antichrist, but whenever he does appear, he may be one of us. They did execute Jesus and they used the crowd. Saved Barabbas! I don’t know about you, but at this point, it has become a dire necessity to test all the spirits. They all sound genuine. They all name the name of Christ. You know, fake fruit and real fruit look identical, until you bite into it.
“Now brother will deliver up brother to death, and a father his child; and children will rise up against parents and cause them to be put to death. And you will be hated by all for My name’s sake. But he who endures to the end will be saved. When they persecute you in this city, flee to another. For assuredly, I say to you, you will not have gone through the cities of Israel before the Son of Man comes.”Matthew 10:21-23
Can I be deceived?
I have been praying about my walk with Christ and about my fellow brothers and sisters in Christ that have been blinded by the light of the Trump train. My God is great. My God is the rock of my salvation. I have seen that Christians can be deceived. Matthew 24:24 “For false christs and false prophets will rise and show great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect.” My prayer to God is to not allow me to be caught up in deception. I ask for wisdom to discern the things of God and rightly divide His word. There’s to much garbage out there and you know that old saying, GIGO, garbage in, garbage out. Well… we are what we believe. I tell everyone, at the start a new job, read the employee handbook. It has all the information needed to stay employed. It explains organizational discipline and the grounds for termination. That’s what the Bible is for believers.
But concerning the times and the seasons, brethren, you have no need that I should write to you. For you yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so comes as a thief in the night. For when they say, “Peace and safety!” then sudden destruction comes upon them, as labor pains upon a pregnant woman. And they shall not escape. But you, brethren, are not in darkness, so that this Day should overtake you as a thief. You are all sons of light and sons of the day. We are not of the night nor of darkness. Therefore let us not sleep, as others do, but let us watch and be sober.
For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk are drunk at night. But let us who are of the day be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love, and as a helmet the hope of salvation. For God did not appoint us to wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, who died for us, that whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with Him. Therefore comfort each other and edify one another, just as you also are doing.
And we urge you, brethren, to recognize those who labor among you, and are over you in the Lord and admonish you, and to esteem them very highly in love for their work’s sake. Be at peace among yourselves.
Now we exhort you, brethren, warn those who are unruly, comfort the fainthearted, uphold the weak, be patient with all. See that no one renders evil for evil to anyone, but always pursue what is good both for yourselves and for all.
Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. Do not quench the Spirit. Do not despise prophecies. Test all things; hold fast what is good. Abstain from every form of evil.
Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you completely; and may your whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. He who calls you is faithful, who also will do it. Brethren, pray for us.
More later… be blessed.