The resurrection of Jesus Christ is the most significant event in history. Over the last few weeks Easter has been the topic of this column and I’m sure the subject of many a sermon but what about the significant events of the future?
The religious elite of Jesus’ day were looking for the coming of the Messiah, but when He arrived they rejected Him. They should not have been taken by surprise, there were signs. The virgin birth, the trip to and from Egypt, Herod’s killing of the male children and with all this there was all the miracles that Jesus did.
Jesus is coming back and just as there were signs of His first coming there are signs of His second coming.
The largest, most prominent sign is the rebirth of Israel (Ezekiel 38; Matthew 24:32-34). Watch Israel.
Jesus also gave us a list of things to watch for – people claiming to be the Messiah, wars and rumors of wars, famines, pestilences (disease, plagues), earthquakes (Matthew 24:3-8).
With catastrophic natural disasters occurring throughout the last seven years before Christ’s return we can also add climate change to the list of things to watch. A note on climate change: We seem preoccupied arguing about what has caused it — man, Mother Nature, global warming or global cooling — pick your poison.
This is like a car catching on fire at a gas station and everyone is standing there arguing about how the fire started instead of being concerned about the huge explosion that is about to take place. Hurricanes, earthquakes, tornadoes, drought, snowstorms and even volcanoes seem to be increasing in frequency and intensity over the last few years. We argue about why instead of looking toward the huge explosion that is coming — the return of Jesus Christ.
There are other things to watch for as well. Shortly before the return of Jesus, the Antichrist will establish a one world economic system. This will be necessary because of the mess the world economy will be in at the time. We should be watching economic trends, in particular the fall of the American economy. When the dollar crashes the world economy will go with it and the Antichrist’s “mark” system (Revelation 13:16-17) will likely be what will rise from the ashes.
Speaking of the Antichrist and America, something else that needs watching is the United States being fundamentally transformed into something Washington, Jefferson, Franklin and the rest of the founders never intended. A free, God-fearing America would never allow the Antichrist take control.
As mentioned already he will take control of the world’s economy and he will also take control of the religious structure of the world bringing the world to worship him. He will also kill those that will refuse to worship him (Revelation 13:3-9). The Bible tells us the economy and religion of the Antichrist will be worldwide, by definition this includes the United States. America will undergo massive change.
The Bible also tells us of the moral decay that is a sign the last days are upon us, “This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, without natural affection, truce breakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, traitors, heady, high-minded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; having a form of godliness but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.” (2 Timothy 3:1-5).
Anyone with gray in their hair can look at this list and understand that these things, although they have always been with us, are much more prevalent and increasing in practice as each year passes.
There is even more; like alliances among nations and the spiritual condition of the church, but space will prevent me at this time from getting into those details.
I will leave you with this: Jesus was asked in Mark 13:4, “Tell us, when shall these things be? And what shall be the sign when all these things shall be fulfilled?”
His answer goes on for the rest of the chapter and ends in verse 37 with these words, “And what I say unto you I say unto all, Watch.”
Preacher Johnson is pastor of Countryside Baptist Church in Parke County, Ind., and is considered by many as an expert on Biblical prophecy. He and his wife, Julie, have four grown children and 11 grandchildren. All scripture references are from the KJV. Blog: www.preacherjohnson.com; email: firstname.lastname@example.org.