Some prophecy teachers claim that Israel is the interpretive key to prophecy, especially in the book of Revelation. This is a regressive view considering what the New Testament teaches about Jesus and his pivotal role in unfolding the redemptive plan of God.
The prologue to the gospel of John presents Jesus as the logos, God’s great and final revelation. It contrasts him with the previous revelation given by Moses. The word that became flesh in Jesus Christ, “tabernacled among us”; he is the true tabernacle in whom God’s presence dwells, not a manmade structure in the city of Jerusalem. Continue reading The Key that Unlocks the book of Revelation
Albert Einstein defined insanity as “doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.” Over the past five generations, since at least 1830, American prophecy preachers have pointed to earthquakes, wars, famines, increased speed of travel, and vast increases in human knowledge as evidence that the “last generation” to exist before the return of Jesus was underway.
Despite these claims made with a seemingly impressive amount of evidence, Jesus has not returned, the battle of Armageddon has not been fought, the Antichrist has not appeared, “Gog and Magog” have not attacked Israel from the north, the Roman empire has not risen again, the false prophet and his new world religion are nowhere to be found, the great tribulation has yet to commence, California has not fallen into the sea, and there has been no “rapture” despite the passage of over two “generations” since the founding of modern Israel (1948). This would seem to fit Professor Einstein’s definition. Continue reading The Apostle Paul and the Signs of the Times
Jesus predicted the destruction of the Temple and of the city of Jerusalem after his final visit to Herod’s Temple. Because Israel had rejected her Messiah, “All these things shall come upon this generation. Behold, your house is left to you desolate. Truly I declare to you, there shall not be left one stone upon another that shall not be thrown down” (Matthew 23:34-39; 24:1-2).
In response, the disciples of Jesus asked him two questions: when will the predicted destruction of the Temple occur, and what will be the “sign” of the coming and the consummation of the age? He responded with a dire warning: beware of false messiahs and false prophets that point to wars, reports of wars, earthquakes, international conflicts, and famines as indicators of the proximity of the end. Deceivers would raise false expectations about “signs” and the nearness of the end (Matthew 24:4-8; 2 Thessalonians 2:1-4). Continue reading The Task that Completes this Age
The final block of teaching by Jesus is referred to by biblical scholars as the ‘Olivet Discourse.’ It was given to his twelve disciples on the Mount of Olives shortly before his arrest, trial, and execution (Matthew Chapter 24, Mark Chapter 13, Luke Chapter 21). Three warnings are repeated throughout this discourse and, so, call for the reader’s attention.
First, warnings about coming deceivers. The very first statement of the Discourse is an exhortation, “Beware lest anyone deceive you” (Matthew 24:4). This was given to the disciples of Jesus, not to unregenerate sinners. These deceivers will be intent on “deceiving many.” Continue reading The Warnings of Jesus in his Final Discourse
(Matthew 24:33-34) – “So also when you see all these things, you know that it is near, at the very gates. When you see all these things know that it is near, at the doors. Verily I am saying to you, this generation will not pass until all these things are fulfilled.”
The declaration of Jesus that “this generation will not pass until all these things are fulfilled” has become a difficult passage for many interpreters. Apparently, Jesus claimed that all the things he predicted in the Olivet Discourse would be fulfilled by the end of his generation; prophecies of tumultuous times in Judea, the destruction of the Temple, coming deceivers, earthquakes, famines, international conflicts, the tribulation, the “abomination of desolation,” cosmic upheaval, the gathering of the elect, and the coming of the Son of Man in glory. Continue reading “This Generation” in the Olivet Discourse