Posted in prophecy, Uncategorized

Thirty Days of Jesus Repeat: Postlude 2, Like the Sun

By Elizabeth Prata

Christmas means baby Jesus. Everybody loves the baby. The swaddling clothes (so cute!) the manger (awww, really?), the Wise Man (distinguished solemnity). It is a tremendous story. It is THE story of all of history. God Himself came in flesh, incarnated solely to grow, live a perfect life, and die. Continue reading “Thirty Days of Jesus Repeat: Postlude 2, Like the Sun”

Posted in prophecy, Uncategorized

Thirty Days of Jesus Repeat: Postlude 1, He is coming again

By Elizabeth Prata

thirty days of jesus postlude 1
Further Reading:

GTY blog/sermon link: Christmas Future

Spurgeon: Watching for Christ’s Coming

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Thirty Days of Jesus Series-

Introduction/Background
Day 1: The Virgin shall conceive
Day 2: A shoot from Jesse
Day 3: God sent His Son in the fullness of time
Day 4:  Marry her, she will bear a Son

Day 5: The Babe has arrived!
Day 6: The Glory of Jesus
Day 7: Magi seek the Child
Day 8: The Magi offer gifts & worship
Day 9: The Child Grew
Day 10: The boy Jesus at the Temple
Day 11: He was Obedient!
Day 12: The Son!
Day 13: God is pleased with His Son
Day 14: Propitiation
Day 15: The gift of eternal life
Day 16: Two Kingdoms
Day 17: Jesus’ Preeminence
Day 18: Jesus is highest king
Day 19: Jesus emptied Himself
Day 20: Jesus as Teacher
Day 21: Jesus as Shepherd
Day 22, Jesus as Intercessor

Day 23: Jesus as Compassionate Healer
Day 24: Jesus as Omniscient
Day 25: Jesus’ Authority
Day 26: Jesus’ Sinlessness
Day 27: He rises!
Day 28: Resurrection is of central importance
Day 29: Ascension
Day 30: He sat down

Posted in prophecy, Uncategorized

Thirty Days of Jesus Redux: Postlude 2, Like the Sun

By Elizabeth Prata

Christmas means baby Jesus. Everybody loves the baby. The swaddling clothes (so cute!) the manger (awww, really?), the Wise Man (distinguished solemnity). It is a tremendous story. It is THE story of all of history. God Himself came in flesh, incarnated solely to grow, live a perfect life, and die.

The baby grew up. He ascended to the Father, sat down, and reigns from heaven. He is coming again, as I wrote yesterday. When He comes again it will not be as a baby all swaddled and cooing. His incarnation continues, as it will forever, but today we look at Jesus as He is now. He is kingly, powerful. He is GOD.

Then I turned to see the voice that was speaking to me, and on turning I saw seven golden lampstands, 13and in the midst of the lampstands one like a son of man, clothed with a long robe and with a golden sash around his chest. 14The hairs of his head were white, like white wool, like snow. His eyes were like a flame of fire, 15his feet were like burnished bronze, refined in a furnace, and his voice was like the roar of many waters. (Revelation 1:12-15).

The verse continues into v. 16, today’s focus. It’s the last verse in the series. We have gone from prophecies announcing the fact of His coming, to the Babe, to His life, work and ministry, His death and resurrection, and now as He is in heaven and His soon return. He will come again to deal with sin- and sinners.

True believers will be gathered with Him prior to the bloodbath that the Second Coming will be. During that horrific time, it will be a blessed time also, because many will come to faith. It will be a time of blood, evangelism, faith, sin, horror, and martyrdom.

Praise God, Jesus will come again. He is great and mighty.

On to today’s verse:

thirty days of jesus final

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Thirty Days of Jesus Series-

Introduction/Background
Day 1: The Virgin shall conceive
Day 2: A shoot from Jesse
Day 3: God sent His Son in the fullness of time
Day 4:  Marry her, she will bear a Son

Day 5: The Babe has arrived!
Day 6: The Glory of Jesus
Day 7: Magi seek the Child
Day 8: The Magi offer gifts & worship
Day 9: The Child Grew
Day 10: The boy Jesus at the Temple
Day 11: He was Obedient!
Day 12: The Son!
Day 13: God is pleased with His Son
Day 14: Propitiation
Day 15: The gift of eternal life
Day 16: Two Kingdoms
Day 17: Jesus’ Preeminence
Day 18: Jesus is highest king
Day 19: Jesus emptied Himself
Day 20: Jesus as Teacher
Day 21: Jesus as Shepherd
Day 22, Jesus as Intercessor

Day 23: Jesus as Compassionate Healer
Day 24: Jesus as Omniscient
Day 25: Jesus’ Authority
Day 26: Jesus’ Sinlessness
Day 27: He rises!
Day 28: Resurrection is of central importance
Day 29: Ascension
Day 30: He sat down
Thirty Days of Jesus: Postlude 1, He is coming again

I hope you have enjoyed these verses and pictorial representations of the thirty-plus verses I’d selected. Feel free to use the photos as you will. All of them except two are my own creation, and the two that aren’t mine are issued freely under creative commons license at Unsplash.com. Be sure to visit the Further Readings links I’d posted under most of the Scripture pictures, too. I always want to connect readers with good, credible sources.

Happy New Year! May 2019 be the year Christ returns.

2 Timothy 1:10
And now He has revealed this grace through the appearing of our Savior, Christ Jesus, who has abolished death and illuminated the way to life and immortality through the gospel,

Posted in prophecy, Uncategorized

Thirty Days of Jesus Redux: Postlude 1, He is coming again

By Elizabeth Prata

thirty days of jesus postlude 1
Further Reading:

GTY blog/sermon link: Christmas Future

Spurgeon: Watching for Christ’s Coming

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Thirty Days of Jesus Series-

Introduction/Background
Day 1: The Virgin shall conceive
Day 2: A shoot from Jesse
Day 3: God sent His Son in the fullness of time
Day 4:  Marry her, she will bear a Son

Day 5: The Babe has arrived!
Day 6: The Glory of Jesus
Day 7: Magi seek the Child
Day 8: The Magi offer gifts & worship
Day 9: The Child Grew
Day 10: The boy Jesus at the Temple
Day 11: He was Obedient!
Day 12: The Son!
Day 13: God is pleased with His Son
Day 14: Propitiation
Day 15: The gift of eternal life
Day 16: Two Kingdoms
Day 17: Jesus’ Preeminence
Day 18: Jesus is highest king
Day 19: Jesus emptied Himself
Day 20: Jesus as Teacher
Day 21: Jesus as Shepherd
Day 22, Jesus as Intercessor

Day 23: Jesus as Compassionate Healer
Day 24: Jesus as Omniscient
Day 25: Jesus’ Authority
Day 26: Jesus’ Sinlessness
Day 27: He rises!
Day 28: Resurrection is of central importance
Day 29: Ascension
Day 30: He sat down

Posted in prophecy, Uncategorized

Thirty Days of Jesus: Postlude 2, Like the Sun

Christmas means baby Jesus. Everybody loves the baby. The swaddling clothes (so cute!) the manger (awww, really?), the Wise Man (distinguished solemnity). It is a tremendous story. It is THE story of all of history. God Himself came in flesh, incarnated solely to grow, live a perfect life, and die.

The baby grew up. He ascended to the Father, sat down, and reigns from heaven. He is coming again, as I wrote yesterday. When He comes again it will not be as a baby all swaddled and cooing. His incarnation continues, as it will forever, but today we look at Jesus as He is now. He is kingly, powerful. He is GOD.

Then I turned to see the voice that was speaking to me, and on turning I saw seven golden lampstands, 13and in the midst of the lampstands one like a son of man, clothed with a long robe and with a golden sash around his chest. 14The hairs of his head were white, like white wool, like snow. His eyes were like a flame of fire, 15his feet were like burnished bronze, refined in a furnace, and his voice was like the roar of many waters. (Revelation 1:12-15).

The verse continues into v. 16, today’s focus. It’s the last verse in the series. We have gone from prophecies announcing the fact of His coming, to the Babe, to His life, work and ministry, His death and resurrection, and now as He is in heaven and His soon return. He will come again to deal with sin- and sinners.

True believers will be gathered with Him prior to the bloodbath that the Second Coming will be. During that horrific time, it will be a blessed time also, because many will come to faith. It will be a time of blood, evangelism, faith, sin, horror, and martyrdom.

Praise God, Jesus will come again. He is great and mighty.

On to today’s verse:

thirty days of jesus final

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Thirty Days of Jesus Series-

Introduction/Background
Day 1: The Virgin shall conceive
Day 2: A shoot from Jesse
Day 3: God sent His Son in the fullness of time
Day 4:  Marry her, she will bear a Son

Day 5: The Babe has arrived!
Day 6: The Glory of Jesus
Day 7: Magi seek the Child
Day 8: The Magi offer gifts & worship
Day 9: The Child Grew
Day 10: The boy Jesus at the Temple
Day 11: He was Obedient!
Day 12: The Son!
Day 13: God is pleased with His Son
Day 14: Propitiation
Day 15: The gift of eternal life
Day 16: Two Kingdoms
Day 17: Jesus’ Preeminence
Day 18: Jesus is highest king
Day 19: Jesus emptied Himself
Day 20: Jesus as Teacher
Day 21: Jesus as Shepherd
Day 22, Jesus as Intercessor

Day 23: Jesus as Compassionate Healer
Day 24: Jesus as Omniscient
Day 25: Jesus’ Authority
Day 26: Jesus’ Sinlessness
Day 27: He rises!
Day 28: Resurrection is of central importance
Day 29: Ascension
Day 30: He sat down
Thirty Days of Jesus: Postlude 1, He is coming again

I hope you have enjoyed these verses and pictorial representations of the thirty-plus verses I’d selected. Feel free to use the photos as you will. All of them except two are my own creation, and the two that aren’t mine are issued freely under creative commons license at Unsplash.com. Be sure to visit the Further Readings links I’d posted under most of the Scripture pictures, too. I always want to connect readers with good, credible sources.

Happy New Year! May 2018 be the year Christ returns.

2 Timothy 1:10
And now He has revealed this grace through the appearing of our Savior, Christ Jesus, who has abolished death and illuminated the way to life and immortality through the gospel,

Posted in prophecy, Uncategorized

Thirty Days of Jesus: Postlude 1, He is coming again

thirty days of jesus postlude 1
Further Reading:

GTY blog/sermon link: Christmas Future

Spurgeon: Watching for Christ’s Coming

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Thirty Days of Jesus Series-

Introduction/Background
Day 1: The Virgin shall conceive
Day 2: A shoot from Jesse
Day 3: God sent His Son in the fullness of time
Day 4:  Marry her, she will bear a Son

Day 5: The Babe has arrived!
Day 6: The Glory of Jesus
Day 7: Magi seek the Child
Day 8: The Magi offer gifts & worship
Day 9: The Child Grew
Day 10: The boy Jesus at the Temple
Day 11: He was Obedient!
Day 12: The Son!
Day 13: God is pleased with His Son
Day 14: Propitiation
Day 15: The gift of eternal life
Day 16: Two Kingdoms
Day 17: Jesus’ Preeminence
Day 18: Jesus is highest king
Day 19: Jesus emptied Himself
Day 20: Jesus as Teacher
Day 21: Jesus as Shepherd
Day 22, Jesus as Intercessor

Day 23: Jesus as Compassionate Healer
Day 24: Jesus as Omniscient
Day 25: Jesus’ Authority
Day 26: Jesus’ Sinlessness
Day 27: He rises!
Day 28: Resurrection is of central importance
Day 29: Ascension
Day 30: He sat down

Posted in prophecy, Uncategorized

One of Jesus’ titles is “The Coming One”. He IS coming again. Are you ready?

In listening to John MacArthur’s series in Revelation, this sermon yielded some glorious truths, once again. The sermon is titled The Certainty of the Second Coming. Now, we all know Jesus is coming to earth again. This time He will not be a meek servant, but a powerful judge. But do we know just how certain His coming is? How often the Bible makes reference to it? We don’t hear the Second Coming preached much, or spoken of often. But it is the next prophetic event on the calendar (along with the rapture, which will happen just prior). Here is an excerpt from the sermon:

“The Coming One” was a title for Messiah. “The Coming One” was a special name for Messiah. In fact, back in Matthew we have an interesting reference to it. I’ll just read it to you. In Matthew, John the Baptist was in prison and he sent word by his disciples to Jesus. And they said to Him, “Are You the Coming One?” You see, the Jews all knew that the Coming One was a Messianic title. Jesus is the Coming One. That same verb, erchomai [???], that means “coming,” is used directly or indirectly with reference to Christ nine times in the book of Revelation. Seven of those nine times it is the words of Jesus Himself, referring to Himself as “the Coming One.”

This book, then, is about the coming of the Coming One. And the present tense indicates to us that He’s already coming, so that we have this sense of expectation that leads John to say, “Look, He is coming,” as if we are to be living in eager expectation. This, again, is the great heart of the book [of Revelation].

For every time the Bible mentions the first coming of Christ, it mentions the second coming 8 times. For each time the atonement is mentioned once, the second coming is mentioned twice. Jesus refers to His second coming 21 times, and over 50 times we are told to be ready for His return.

Over 50 times we are warned to be ready for His return? Wow. Yet for all the lack of preaching and teaching on it, one would think it is not important. But it is highly important. I recommend MacArthur’s series in Revelation. My personal opinion is that his best book has been Because the Time is Near, an overview of Revelation.

Through death, rapture, or Judgment, you will meet Him. Are you ready?

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Further Reading

Alistair Begg/Truth for Life Devotional: Be Ready

Ligonier Devotional: Discerning the Signs

Grace to You Article: Marks of a Committed Christian

Posted in prophecy, Uncategorized

Psychological impact of the Tribulation: people will literally be scared to death

OVERVIEW OF END TIME PROPHECY

In my essay yesterday about Why We Should Value Prophecy, I laid out some reasons why prophecy is just an important kind of biblical literature as other types of biblical literature, such as Law, History, Poetry, Wisdom, or Gospel. I also laid out some thoughts as to the purpose of prophecy.

By now (in 2016) most of the past prophecies have been fulfilled. There is one prophecy that has not been completely fulfilled however, and that is the bundle of prophecies relating to the time of the end of the end. We are in the end time. We have been in the end time since Jesus ascended, and will be until He returns in glory and judges all things, completes his 1000 year reign on earth, and then dissolves the Universe in a fervent heat and makes all things new. The prophecies remaining to be fulfilled describe all things through the end of Revelation 22, which include the Rapture, the Tribulation, the Millennial Kingdom, Satan Released for the Last Battle, and the New Heavens and New Earth.

I’d said a moment ago that the prophecies relating to the end time have not been completely fulfilled. Many of the prophecies are in a state of being fulfilled, while others are definitely not happening yet. Prophecies relating to the end time describe the symptoms of this long stretch of time between the two comings of Jesus. So while the prophecy of Paul in 2 Timothy 3 are describing general conditions during this wide swathe of time, the specific prophecies of certain events have not occurred. That’s the interesting thing about prophecy. One prophecy can have a dual fulfillment, a far fulfillment, a discrete, one-time fulfillment, or a continual fulfillment.

Since it has been a long while since the last fulfilled prophecy, Jesus’ incarnation, death, and resurrection, people may become lulled into a sense of security and mock the end time prophecies and judgments. Even this is prophesied! Peter wrote in 2 Peter 3:3-4,

First of all, you must understand that in the last days scoffers will come, scoffing and following their own evil desires. “Where is the promise of His coming?” they will ask. “Ever since our fathers fell asleep, everything continues as it has from the beginning of creation.”

PSYCHOLOGICAL IMPACT OF THE END TIMES

The nature of sin and the end time are inextricably intertwined. The reason for the prophecies of the end of time are because of sin. Ever since Adam sinned in the Garden and man lost his position of pure fellowship with God, as humans and as a world, we have been in a continual state of devolvement and uncreation. Since the moment Eve bit the fruit and gave some to her husband, who was with her, (Genesis 3:6) all events have been working toward the end of God’s plan. It began with one sin and it will end with all sin.

Sin is the reason for the end time. Because the end time events are about judgment for sin.

We downplay sin. We have respectable sins. We sin and do not repent. As a church we do not regard the spiritual battles with enough fervor. Where is the David tearing his clothes and crying out to God? Where is the city like Nineveh crying out for mercy in sackcloth and ashes from the king down to the lowliest slave? Where are the pray-ers and fast-ers interceding in the battle? Where is the concern for holiness in the church? Not that there aren’t any, but the general trajectory of sin is that it tries with unceasing vigilance to corrupt our hearts and our churches. We already know what unresolved sin does to the human mind of the unsaved person- he is a total slave to it. Their minds are corrupt.

So that is the time of the end. More and more people will be totally corrupted by total sin, and not care.

This will make for an insane society. (Romans 1:28-32, Genesis 6:5, Matthew 24:37). We already see the effects of so much sin on human civilization. It can’t be refuted that civilization of these days has hurtled down the road of libertinism, depravity, murder, and more. Marriage, the first God-given institution, is being dismissed and redefined. Gender itself, a biological absolute from God, is also being corrupted by the doctors’ scalpel and the personal wills of depraved individuals. Life is not valued, ethical restrains are by the wayside, and the age-old cherished values of courage, personal duty, and honor are now old fashioned words, mocked by post-modernists.

And yet today’s depravity and sin-loving condition (Romans 1:32) is nothing, nothing to what is to come.

For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false testimony, and slander. (Matthew 15:19).

If all those things are in the heart and come out as we see now, what till the Tribulation be like when there is no restraint at all on mans’ proclivity to seek satan and his evil?! (2 Thessalonians 2:7).

I have tried and failed in past essays to bring to bear the totally depraved and horrific time the Tribulation will be. Because we often cannot or do not understand the nature of sin, we downplay the Tribulation’s evil, ghastly and grotesque condition. However it will be a time when men will simply go mad from what they see.

I’d read somewhere, I’m sorry I forget where, the verse from  Deuteronomy 28:34, a section called The Curses of Disobedience, a number of judgments to come upon the People. The the verse states,

so that you are driven mad by the sights that your eyes see.

Men’s behavior will be so depraved that just looking at what is happening will cause a person to go insane. We don’t even know the half of what sin can do. We haven’t even scratched the surface yet. While the Deuteronomy verse describes an event that has already occurred and passed into history, it mirrors the conditions of the Tribulation. Calvin says of the Deuteronomy verse that,

He adds that there shall be no end to their affliction, until the magnitude of their calamities shall stupefy them.

Matthew Henry says of the verse,

To complete their misery, it is threatened that they should be put quite out of the possession of their minds by all these troubles 

Walvoord says of the verse,

The afflictions mentioned here result from defeat in battle. The military exemptions mentioned in 20:5–7 would be reversed without God’s protection (28:30). Livestock and children would be lost forever (vv. 31–32). Foreign armies would reap the benefit of the farmers’ hard work (v. 33). These devastating losses would produce insanity (v. 34) and painful boils (v. 35; cf. v. 27).

If men’s minds were not able to apprehend the effects of defeat in battle, what of their mental state when actual hell is loosed on earth? When sin reigns? Jesus foretold the following as regards the Tribulation:

  • Men fainting from fear and the expectation of the things which are coming upon the world; (Luke 21:26)
  • And upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; (Luke 21:25, KJV)
  • Then the kings of the earth and the great ones and the generals and the rich and the powerful, and everyone, slaved and free, hid themselves in the caves and among the rocks of the mountains, calling to the mountains and rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the face of him who is seated on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb, for the great day of their wrath has come, and who can stand?” (Revelation 6:15-17)

The Tribulation period will be a time of extermination. God will exterminate sinners from the world as cockroaches in disgust and fury. Here is one pastor’s description:

Verse 26, “Men fainting from fear and the expectation of the things which are coming upon the world.”

So we are in the end of the time of the Tribulation when the universe as we know it is being dramatically altered. And first is chaos before there is reconstruction. There’s only one way to deal with all of the things that happen which we went through last time, dismay among nations. The word in the Greek is sunoche and it’s only used one other time in the New Testament, it’s a rare word. It means anguish. It describes a kind of human emotion which is overwhelming and overpowering. It even could be translated severe anxiety. There is…there is a sense of terror and a sense of anxiousness that knows no bounds and no relief. It is compounded by perplexity. The word aporia only here in the New Testament. It’s as if the Holy Spirit uses words that define a time the likes of which has never existed and picks words that are very, very rare for such a rare time. Aporia, perplexity, it simply means confusion in its most severe form. 

Shock is so great that we are told that men are fainting from fear. And fainting is a rather benign way to translate another rare word used no where else in the New Testament, aposuche (?). What that word means is to breathe out or to expire. That’s another word for to die. People will be scared to death. People will be scared to death. People all over the world will die of terror because of what is happening and because what is happening they know will lead to further horrors. (Source)

Even with that, there is no way to describe it. No one would really want to, anyway. We often dwell on the depths of God’s love, knowing that we can’t truly comprehend such eternal, perfect, infinite love. Just so, we cannot really understand sin. It also is boundless, eternal, and utterly incomprehensible to its depths. We think we understand sin. We don’t. The Tribulation pagans and the saved will, because they will see it almost fully. Even then, they will not see what the nature of sin can do to its ends, because Jesus said that if He would not cut short the time, no flesh would be saved at all! (Matthew 24:22-23). Sin destroys utterly.

Prophecy isn’t a sphere of study for the prurient intellectual dabbler. It is a serious sphere given to us by the grace of God so we may answer the question Peter asked. He explained the coming end of time judgments and fulfillment of prophetic promises, and asked his flock the following:

Since all these things are thus to be dissolved, what sort of people ought you to be in lives of holiness and godliness, waiting for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be set on fire and dissolved, and the heavenly bodies will melt as they burn! (2 Peter 3:11-12)

Peter made the connection between prophecy and holy living. Prophecy isn’t a distant realm of study for future generations to study. It’s present and it informs us in this day and ever day toward our holy pursuits. Knowing what is coming because we have the blessed advantage of peeking into to the future from God’s word, what sort of people are we to be?

My call is to urge us now, me included, to live in purity. Pursue holiness. Repent often, and in sincerity. Witness of Jesus and His truths. We do not want our best friend left behind. We do not want our worst enemy left behind. We praise Jesus for His soon return in glory and wrath, to render justice for sin. We know that is necessary. But we don’t have to ignore the prophecies, we don’t have to diminish the prophecies, we don’t have to be casual about the prophecies.

Keep this in mind: the truth of the last of the last days will be such that men’s brains will figuratively explode with incomprehensibility because of what they see.

Even so, come Lord Jesus. (Revelation 22:20).