Three Easy Rules to Help You Study Prophecy

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Studying the Book of Revelation is intimidating and it does take some intentional work to understand it. But, it’s no where near as intimidating as you think if you keep three rules in mind (covered in detail below).  My goal with this blog is to make complex things simple in regards to end-times theology and understanding. I think most people are intimidated by the subject and many have decided that it’s too complex to figure out anyway, so they retreat to a position of just being okay with the basics — that Jesus is coming back somehow, some way, at some point.

I used to be there too. But then I read verses that say things like, “God is not the author of confusion” (1 Corinthians 14:33), and “all scripture is inspired by God” (2 Timothy 3:16), or “not one jot or tittle (the smallest marks in the Hebrew language) shall pass from the law until all is fulfilled” (Matthew 5:18). Even the book of Revelation itself says that whoever reads and keeps the prophecies found in Revelation will be blessed (Revelation 1:3, Revelation 22:7). It’s the capstone of the canon, the grand finale of the fireworks show, the crescendo of the symphony, the best part of the love letter, and the climax of the movie, but somehow the enemy has convinced most believers that it’s too convoluted to understand. How did this happen?

First of all, I think it’s because of spiritual warfare. Yes, it’s real. Yes, there is a real Satan and in his twisted mind, he still thinks he can usurp God’s plan and take his place. Satan lusts after the worship that only God deserves and the more he can confuse people about end-time prophecy, the more it plays to his advantage — even though we already know who wins. The enemy knows Bible prophecy. He has studied it for thousands of years. He wants to rewrite the playbook and get our eyes off of the incredible victory that is coming for Christ and for us. If the enemy can take away the biggest motivation factor for expectant living and sharing our faith (Jesus’ soon return/Rev. 22:7) then he will do just that. The enemy does not want God’s people living with the sense of purpose, clarity, and urgency that a proper understanding of end-times events provides.

Second, I think some well meaning but unwise Christians have done unnecessary damage to how people view Bible prophecy. There is never a shortage of date-setters even though Jesus himself said that, “no one knows the day or the hour…” (Matthew 24:36). That doesn’t mean we can’t know the season or general time frame however, but that’s another post for another day.

Third, considering the fact that there are a few different methods of interpretation (Idealist, Preterist, Historicist, and Futurist views) when approaching Revelation, this adds another layer of confusion. If you have 3 or 4 super intelligent authors or seminary professors who say vastly different things about how to interpret the book of Revelation, then how in the world are we supposed to know which view is accurate? Am I reading your mail? If so, please keep reading!

I should note here that the various views of the end-times is an in-house debate. It’s not a salvation issue. Some truly Godly people who love the Lord and love the word of God disagree on the order of end-time events. Through MUCH study and a great amount of conviction, I fall firmly into the futurist, pre-trib, pre-mill camp (If you don’t know what that means stay tuned for future posts on that topic), but I would never berate a brother or sister in Christ who held another view. Sadly, I see this happen way too often when Christians disagree. For some reason these believers forget all about John 13:35 that says, “By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”

There is a famous quote attributed to an early church leader that says, “In essentials unity, in non-essentials liberty, in all things, charity.” Let’s unite around the essentials, allow for differing views in the non-essentials, and demonstrate true Christian love toward each other, even if we disagree on how the end-time pieces fall into place. But, don’t let the term “non-essential” make you think you don’t need to study and form your own convictions. Have the courage to pursue truth wherever it leads.

So, to bring it back to where we started…making complex things simple. Here are three very important rules to follow when studying prophecy and attempting to form your own conviction about the nature of Bible prophecy and of end-time events.

I. STUDY THE TOTALITY OF SCRIPTURE

If scripture is without error and of divine origin we should see a harmony and cohesiveness within it’s pages, and we do. The more I study it, the more I know that only a sovereign God could have put it together. We see lines of theology introduced in Genesis and progressively revealed throughout the Old and New Testaments. We see a divine harmonization of passages written at different times by different writers. For those who want to take the time, you’ll find that the internal and external evidence for  the reliability of scripture is overwhelming.

With those facts in view as we study prophecy, we can confidently interpret scripture with scripture and take every world literally unless it’s clearly a figure of speech. It is very easy to take verses out of context or brush them off if we don’t understand that we should let scripture shed light on other parts of scripture. When symbols are used in the book of Revelation for example, we can’t use contemporary concepts to understand them. We have to search the Old Testament for instances of those symbols. This unlocks the meaning of the symbol and harmonizes it with scripture. I’ve seen some Christians treat the Old Testament like it is obsolete and only study the New Testament in depth. This does them a disservice because, “ALL SCRIPTURE is God-breathed and useful for teaching…” (2 Timothy 3:16). You cannot fully understand Eschatology without understanding the progression of theology from Genesis to Revelation.

II. DON’T SPIRITUALIZE

Too often, students of the Bible tend to “spiritualize” the meaning of prophecies even though they don’t do this with any other areas of scripture. For example, when the Bible talks about various people groups, we understand they are talking about specific countries, areas, or groups of people. In most cases, we can trace the history back to those people. But some prophecy teachers use “replacement theology” and replace Israel with the Church and that God is done with Israel (even though Paul spends 3 chapters in Romans [Ch. 9-11] clearly showing God is NOT done w/ Israel or the Jewish people).

Another example is with the Millennium (the 1000 year period of Christ’s rule on earth after the Tribulation period). Even though the Old Testament prophets say over and over again that the Lord will rule on a literal throne from Jerusalem, and Revelation chapter 20 says six times that there will be a 1000 year reign of Christ, many prophecy teachers say this is figurative for the Church age. The problem is no other scripture sheds light on this being figurative. No where in scripture does it say the church has replaced the Jews, nor is there any precedent for spiritualizing the meaning of the 1000 years. Everywhere else where God uses a number, that number is to be taken literally. When the Gospels tell us Jesus chose 12 disciples, it meant exactly that. Precision and accuracy are hallmarks of God’s nature.

III. USE LOGIC

We need to use our God-given ability to apply logic to compare and contrast passages of scripture to develop a framework of understanding of end-time events. For example. If the rapture where we “meet the Lord in the air” is imminent (meaning it can happen at any time with no preconditions) as taught by Paul, and if the tribulation begins with the confirming of a covenant by the anti-christ, and if the anti-Christ cannot be revealed until after the rapture occurs, then logic demands that the rapture must occur before the tribulation. Here’s another example. If the anti-Christ stands in the temple in the middle of the seven-year tribulation period and there is not currently a temple in Jerusalem, then it stands to reason that sometime between now and the middle of the tribulation, a third Jewish temple will be constructed. (BTW, did you know there’s an organization called The Temple Institute that has already constructed all of the instruments, trained priests who’s DNA traces back to the Levitical line of the Old Testament, has the building plans, and funding for the third temple?)

As you read prophetic passages without spiritualizing the meaning and recalling other related passages, you can use logic to connect the dots and develop clearer convictions and a better understanding about the nature of end-time events.

By following those rules, I have found that studying Bible prophecy and the book of Revelation to be the most exciting Bible study I’ve ever taken on — mainly because these three rules clear the fog and unlock God’s word. I am 100% convinced that God means what he says and says what he means, that the totality of scripture completely harmonizes, and that our God-given ability to use logic connects the dots.

When studying scripture with that approach and with the attitude that you will follow truth wherever it will lead, I believe you will come to the same conclusions I have (Pre-trib, Pre-Mil, Futurist Positions). But even if you don’t, you will still have a much better understanding of scripture. I hope this post will help encourage you to study prophecy with a sense of clarity and expectancy. God’s word was never meant to be boring or convoluted.

For further reading, be sure to check out the previous posts on the 5 Keys to Understanding the Book of Revelation.

 

Obedience Leads to Blessing

How Jacob Became Israel

I’m using the simple S.O.A.P. method for studying God’s word and wanted to share an example here. In short, I read scripture until a particular verse jumps out at me, then I write that verse down. S is for scripture. O is for observation. A is for application. and P is for prayer. This simple method for daily devotions has worked for me for several years now. Here is my devotion from today. 


SCRIPTURE

Genesis 35:5 Reads, “Then they set out and the terror of God fell on the towns all around them so that no one pursued them.”

In the preceding verses, God spoke to Jacob and told him to take his family up to Bethel to build and altar and settle there. Then, in an act of purification and dedication…and good leadership, Jacob commanded everyone to get rid of their idols. Then the text tells us they gave all of their idols and earrings to Jacob and he buried them “under the oak at Shechem.” (vs. 4) These were valuable items (at least in their eyes) that the people gave up. 

Verse five jumped out at me because it shows how God works in powerful and surprising ways when His people obey him. God worked mysteriously to provide safe travel for Jacob’s family. But that wasn’t it. The main event of this passage was still to come. Once Jacob followed through with full obedience and relocated to Bethel and built an altar there (vs. 7), God changed his name to Israel and confirmed the covenant he had made with Jacob’s father and grandfather (Abraham and Isaac) giving Israel (the person and the nation) the title deed to the land and all the other future blessings of the covenant.


OBSERVATIONS

• God responded to their act of purity, humility, submission, and dedication.

• Obedience ALWAYS shows up in concrete action.

• Obedience leads to the honor of seeing God move in powerful and unexpected ways.

• Obedience leads to protection from self-desctructive habits, and leads to future blessing.

• Leaders can make a big difference by casting an effective vision and making a bold “ask”.

• A leader’s obedience effects generations to come.


APPLICATION

• We need to simply trust and obey. God’s track record is flawless.

• What do we want more — creature comforts and a false sense of man-centered security — or the privilege of being part of God moving in powerful ways?

• Think of what Jacob and his family would have missed if they didn’t obey.

• God is “the same yesterday, today, and forever.” (Hebrews 13:8) Think of what we miss if we don’t obey God’s calling.

• Our fears and sense of loss when leaving things behind are merely the enemy’s smoke screen to keep us from God’s best. Whatever we give up is ALWAYS replaced by something much better.

• Fall in love with obedience. It ALWAYS leads to future blessing.


PRAYER (Pray this for yourself and/or insert your own personal prayer)

Lord, help me obey in radical ways. I want to be part of your giant story. I want to see you move powerfully. Help me accomplish the hard task of obedience today — so I can bless you and anchor my heart and soul to future blessings.

Dim the appeal of instant gratification in the blinding light of future blessings which will never fade or disappoint. Amen.

What The Experts Are Saying

Screen Shot 2017-01-21 at 10.27.04 AMI’ve been working on a Bible prophecy book (more on that coming soon) to help everyday Christians like me understand Bible prophecy and in my research I was surprised to find so many trusted Christian teachers saying essentially the same thing…that we have more reason than any other time in history to believe Christ’s return could happen in our day. A careful study of the signs that Jesus and others in scripture point us to make me believe we are nearing these events.

Do I feel crazy for saying that? A little, yes. I’m a pretty reserved person who does not like to draw attention, but in the past few years I have become convinced that understanding and teaching Bible prophecy is part of my calling. When I look with natural eyes I want to shrug it all off, but when I prayerfully study scripture taking God at his word I look at the world have to conclude that the conditions of our day perfectly parallel the Biblical narrative for the end times.

There are several specific signs Jesus gave during the Olivet Discourse, especially in Matthew 24 and Luke 21. A careful study of these gave me the solid conviction that we are in this time frame. With this conviction, I wanted to make sure I wasn’t being sensationalistic. I wanted to know what the pros thought so I intentionally researched to see if I could find clear quotes and specific stances from long trusted and non-sensationalistic prophecy experts.

What I found was astounding. Every trusted source I checked implied or boldly proclaimed that we are currently in the season of the Lord’s return. Several adamantly believe that we are the generation that will experience the rapture.

I know, I know…people have been saying that for years. I get it, and I understand the reservation. My point is, these aren’t quotes from obscure lone wolf personalities who had some special revelation or strange esoteric method for foolishly setting a date for the rapture or the end of the world. These are solid, highly respected, non-sensationalistic, credentialed experts who have been studying scripture and world events for decades and have a clear sense that the end-time events are likely closer to us than most people think.


WHAT THE PROS ARE SAYING
These are listed in no particular order. Also, this is a partial list. Since I originally compiled this list I have come across several more solid Biblical scholars who feel we are in the season of the Lord’s return including: Terry James, Pastor Tom Hughes, Pastor Greg Laurie, Hal Lindsey, etc.

DR. DAVID JEREMIAH, Author, Senior pastor of Shadow Mountain Community Church, in El Cajon, California. “Those with the discernment to read the signs of the times today (Matthew 16:2-3) recognize that the similarities between Daniel’s Babylon and today’s Western culture are signs that Daniel’s dark prophetic visions loom close on the horizon.” Dr. David Jeremiah, Agents of Babylon, (Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., 2015), p. 10.

BILLY GRAHAM, Famous Evangelist, Minister, Author. “What a time to take the news of the day in one hand and the Bible in the other and watch the unfolding of the great drama of the ages come together. This is an exciting and thrilling time to be alive…It is not just Christians that sense something is about to happen. The world knows that things cannot go on as they are. History has reached an impasse. This world is on a collision course. Something is about to give. With increasing frequency, commentators from secular media speak of Armageddon.” Billy Graham, The Reason for My Hope

DR. JOHN F. WALVOORD, Theologian/Pastor, President of Dallas Theological Seminary from 1952 to 1986 (Died in 2002). “Just as history was prepared for Christ’s first coming, in a similar way history is preparing for the events leading up to His Second Coming… If this is the case, it leads to the inevitable conclusion that the Rapture may be excitingly near.” Armageddon, Oil, and the Middle East Crisis, rev. Ed. (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1990), p. 217. J.

DWIGHT PENTECOST, Theologian, Professor at Dallas Theological Seminary (Died in 2014). “Will you imagine please, a platform that is shut off by a curtain thats drawn? There’s a lot of activity going on behind that drawn curtain. If there’s a little crack between the bottom of the curtain and the floor, you can see feet rushing around, you can hear furniture being moved, you can hear things going on. You can’t see, but you know that the stage manager is in control and is directing to make sure that every person and every prop essential to that drama is in place. I think that’s the day in which we’re living.” The Road To Armageddon, Charles R. Swindoll, John F. Walvoord, J. Dwight Pentecost, 1999, Thomas Nelson, Pg. 100.

DR. TIM LaHAYE, Pastor, Speaker, Author (Best known for the “Left Behind” Series, Died 2016). “…we have more reason than any generation before us to believe He will come in our generation. ” Are We Living In the End Times? By Tim LeHaye and Jerry B. Jenkins, 1999, Tyndale House, Pg. 6

THOMAS ICE, Executive Director of the Pre-Trib Research Center on the campus of Liberty University in Lynchburg, VA. “We believe that God is now setting the stage for the next era of history, which is known as the Tribulation. There are signs around us that give evidence of this.” Charting the End Times, (Eugene, Oregon; Harvest House Publishers, 2001), p. 118

RON RHODES, Author, Speaker. “Do I believe we are living in the season of the Lord’s return, and if so, why? Yes. I say this because of what I call the “convergence factor.” Not only has Israel come together as a nation again, as prophesied (Ezekiel 26-27), but a number of ancient prophecies of the end times seem to be converging in our day.” (Living on Borrowed Time by Dr. David Reagan {with Ron Rhodes}, Lamb & Lion Ministries, 2013, Pg. 76.)

JAN MARKEL, Radio Host, Conference Leader, Founder of Olive Tree Ministries. “I think the church is headed into the homestretch of her history and I base that not on emotions or wishful thinking. I base that on what I see happening daily. Just a few examples here that tell me we’re in an actual countdown.” Radio Show: comfort one another with these words episode 8-23-16

JEFF KINLEY, Author, Speaker. “The events outlined in Scripture concerning the last days are no longer relegated to futuristic fantasies or the religious rants of wannabe prophets scurrying about the periphery of mainstream Christianity. The prototypical street-corner doomsday prophet wearing a “THE END IS NEAR” sandwich sign may still seem a bit oddball, but his message isn’t quite as absurd as it once seemed. Not since the early church first received the New Testament letters has there been such a spirit of expectancy among students of the Bible and prophecy. “ As It Was In The Days of Noah, Jeff Kinley, 2014 Harvest House Publishers, Pg. 138

AMIR TSARFATI, Bible and Prophecy Teacher from Israel, Founder “Behold Israel”. “These are the last days. We’ve come to the finish line. The rapture of the church can be any minute.”

DR. CHUCK MISSLER, Author, Speaker, Founder of Koinonia Institute. “…It appears that we are presently being plunged into a period of time that the Bible says more about than any other period of history–including the events of the New Testament.” Prophecy 20/20, Dr. Chuck Missler, 2006, Thomas Nelson, Inc., Pg. 2

ROBERT JEFFRESS, Pastor/Author. “After writing this book, I am more convinced than ever that we are living in the period of time the Bible calls ‘the last days.’ If that is true, then we may be the generation that sees the Second Coming of Christ.” (Countdown to the Apocalypse, Robert Jeffress, 2015, Faithwords, Pg. 10

ANNE GRAHAM LOTZ, Author, Speaker, Daughter of Billy Graham. “If I live out my natural lifetime, I believe I will live to see the return of Jesus Christ to this earth. I don’t say that based on my feelings. I base that on the signs the Lord gives and what I see going on in the world”

DR. DAVID REAGAN, Founder of Lamb & Lion Ministries. “The signs of the times are shouting that we are standing on the threshold of the Tribulation…The time remaining is short. The time for action is now.” The Man of Lawlessness, Dr. David Reagan, 2012, Lamb & Lion Ministries, Pg. 26

DR. MARK HITCHCOCK, Pastor, Author, Speaker. “When I look at the world today, I see events unfolding exactly as we ought to expect them to be unfolding if the Bible is true. And that gives me great confidence that although I don’t understand everything all the time that there’s someone at the wheel. That God is in control. That’s the great message of Bible prophecy and that’s the great message of hope that we have.”

BILL KOENIG, Whitehouse Correspondent, Author, Speaker. “Everything that is Biblically significant…12 or so items..that we can watch to understand where we are Biblically and prophetically are in active play right now.”

This Should Wake the Bride!

Geopolitical Convergence

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In Jeff Kinley’s amazing book, Wake the Bride: Facing These Last Days with Your Eyes Wide Open, he uses a personal story as an analogy for how to study prophecy and understand our times.

Kinley shares a story about a hiking trip he took to view a 60 year old airforce plane crash site. The crash site was so remote that officials decided to leave the wreckage after the bodies were removed from the remote mountain peak. Kinley notes that after hours of hiking he wondered if he picked the wrong spot. Just then he stumbled on one piece of debris. Then after more hiking, another piece, then another larger piece. The closer they got to the crash site, the more debris they found.

I believe this is an effective metaphor for understanding our times. There are several clear key things that must fall into place in order for Biblical end-time events to occur. The Old Testament prophets and the New Testament Gospels and letters highlight specific end-time events that will occur. We see the conditions for those events clearly in our day unlike any other time in history. All of the signs and conditions are converging in our day.

Just like the hiking trip where Kinley saw small signs, then more and more signs as he moved closer to the site of impact, we should expect the same thing prophetically as we get closer to the culmination of all things.  As I have been studying the end-time signs the past few years I’ve seen them increase in frequency and severity, just as Jesus predicted in his famous Olivet Discourse where he said the signs would be like birth pains. Older prophecy experts who have been watching and studying for decades note that there used to be one major prophetic event every decade, now we see prophetic developments WEEKLY and at times DAILY!

There are various categories of signs but in this post I want to stick with one category, the geopolitical signs. Below, I have described a few of the end-time conditions the Bible predicted, then I’d like you to ask yourself if we see those conditions today.

BIBLICAL CONDITIONS PREDICTED

I. THE RUSSIAN-IRANIAN PARTNERSHIP

Ezekiel 38 describes an end-time war against Israel led by modern day Russia and Iran and joined by Syria, Turkey and several other Arab/Muslim nations that, in our day, openly state they want Israel to be destroyed. Many Christians have never heard of this war even though it’s one of the clearest and most detailed end-time prophecies. Ezekiel 37-39 detail Israel’s return to her land followed by this end-time battle. Isis and the war in Syria have served as the means for the major players of this future war to form the unprecedented coalition.

II. NATIONS TURNING AGAINST ISREAL, FOCUS ON JERUSALEM AND BORDERS

Zechariah 12:3 tells us that Jerusalem will be the focus of conflict with surrounding countries and the focus of ALL the nations in the end times (note: “that day” in the Bible refers to the Day of the Lord, AKA the end-times when God’s judgement will fall). The description of Jerusalem as an immovable rock is a reference her borders. In ancient days, heavy boundary stones were used to mark territory. In the end-times all nations will be dead set on moving Jerusalem’s boundaries. We see that forming today (see note on UN Resolution 2334 below ). Israel is the apple of God’s eye. When people mess with Israel, they are poking God in the eye (Zechariah 2:8).

III. DESTRUCTION OF DAMASCUS, SYRIA

Isaiah 17:1 tells us about a coming day (see verse 4: “in that day”, i.e. the Day of the Lord) where Damascus, the oldest continually inhabited city in the world, will be destroyed overnight (vs. 14). This event may occur before, during, or after the Gog-Magog war referenced above. It also may occur before or after the Rapture of the Church. The Bible is not clear on the timing other than it will occur in the last days close to or in the 7 year tribulation period.

IV. INCREASE IN WARS, THREATS OF WAR, EARTHQUAKES, AND FAMINES

Matthew 24:6-8 tells us there will be a steady increase in these conditions as the Day of the Lord nears. Verse 6 tells us the end won’t follow immediately when we see these wars (WWI, WWII anyone?) but these signs will noticeably increase as the Rapture and the Tribulation draw near. I say this because Matthew compares the totality of the signs cited as birth pains in verse 8. Although we’re focusing on the geopolitical signs, since these verses also mention an increase in earthquakes I should note that earthquakes continue to climb to unprecedented levels. Consider this. In 1973 there were 4,539 earthquakes worldwide. In 2000 there were 19,131 and this trend has continued since then. In 2013 there were 89,622. In 2014 there were 118,404 and 118,955 in 2015!

V. EUROPE JOINED TOGETHER BUT UNSTABLE

Daniel 2:41-43 describes the conditions of the final kingdom or entity in the area of Europe (where the seat of the Roman Empire once was) as being united but extremely unstable. The vision talks about iron trying to mix with clay (power with fragility) which is an apt description of the European Union today.

VI. A CALL FOR “PEACE AND SAFETY”

1 Thessalonians 5:2-6 describes the conditions of the world just prior to the rapture and the tribulation period. It describes a sudden collapse of stability (I believe it will be global social and financial collapse caused by the rapture itself) to occur at a time when the world is calling for “peace and safety”. (Note: this phrase specifically shows up in the UN Resolution 2334 from 12/23/16 as well as in multiple public speeches from world leaders including several US Presidents.)

TODAY’S UNPRECEDENTED GEO-POLITICAL LANDSCAPE

In our day we see ALL of these lined up simultaneously. Russia and Iran are in partnerships with all of the key players, the nations are turning against Israel. In just a few days 70 nations (a Biblically prophetic number representing the whole world) will meet in France to take action on the horrible UN resolution cited above. Israel recently bombed a convoy carrying chemical weapons just outside of Damascus where there’s a high probability that hordes of chemical weapons are stored underground.

There are more wars and rumors of wars today than there have been in my lifetime. As I write this, the US recently kicked out 35 Russian diplomats and is putting troops on the Russian border just days before the inauguration of a new president. Virtually anywhere you look on the globe there is conflict or impending conflict. Insane dictators have or are close to having nuclear capabilities making for non-stop rumors of war.

The fragile global economy continues to move toward collapse, apparently only held together by God’s prophetic timing. Europe is destabilized by an influx of millions of people from the mid-east as it continues to melt down. Africa is a mess including South Africa where thousands of land owners have been killed. South America continues to decline. Various leaders continue to call specifically for “peace and security” in the context of Israel as cited above.

Ten years ago, this was not even on our radar. Think about how fast the geopolitical landscape has changed. I’m not a mathematician but I am certain that it is statistically impossible for these conditions to all line up simultaneously specifically as foretold in scripture for the end times unless the Lord showed his prophets history in advance.

Also, it defies logic to think that these conditions could fade away, then return together again at a later point in history. This demonstrates that the season of the Lord’s return is closer than most may think. There has never been a convergence of prophetic conditions similar to this. What we’re seeing is truly unprecedented and it should be getting our attention as believers.

IS THE BRIDE MOSTLY ASLEEP?

I love what Jeff says as he describes a common attitude of the day. He says, “Much like hikers, those attempting to scale “Revelation Mountain” typically fall into several categories. Some believe in last day’s prophecy, but choose to keep their distance, safely remaining in the valley below. They’ve concluded that Revelation and prophecy are far too complex for anyone to really understand. So they settle for general truth — “Jesus is coming back…I hope. And that’s enough for me!” So they remain in virtual ignorance about things to come. But this does very little for their present lives or future confidence.”

I fear that the Bride, the Church, many true believers in Christ, are mostly asleep. Somehow we’ve been convinced that His return is in the far distant future…if it’s really going to happen at all. There are many more signs and conditions than what I’ve listed above, but these alone should at least get our attention.

Every word of scripture is truth (2 Timothy 3:16-17) and every letter of prophecy will be fulfilled (Matthew 5:18). God means what he says and says what he means. Now more than ever before, we should take him at his word. Everything he said would happen is falling into place. All the more reason to trust every word of scripture and take it literally.

Let’s wake the Bride and allow Bible prophecy to give us a sense of urgency as we share Christ with our family and friends, and as we prayerfully consider how to live more boldly, more holy, and more intentionally for our soon coming Savior.