This is the Church Age, and we believe that it is drawing to an end. Israel is here and more opposed than ever. Our world is more connected. Our many in our churches are falling away from Truth. (Matthew 16:1-3; 1 Timothy 4:1-4; 2 Thessalonians 2:1-3)
Speaker(s): Pastor Thomas Schaller
Sermon # 11417
11:00 AM on 2/11/2018
Our theme is End Times, prophesies regarding where we are in history. How many feel we are in a unique time in history right now? How would you characterize it? Turbulence, anxiety maybe, a little fear, instability, globalism. Israel has gone back to their country. It’s a sign, an indicator. The world in Iran, Turkey, Russia, Ethiopia and Sudan.
Ezekiel spoke about a war against Israel. This hasn’t happened but now that Israel is back in the land that could be happening. We could spend months, years on Bible prophesy. We are not doing that but introducing the subject to you. Many of you know it. You are in Bible college and have been reading it for decades. There are a lot of us new and we want to understand what Bible prophesy is saying during this period. End Times. Last Days. Those two phrases.
This is the general picture (timeline). We have the Church Age, then 7 years, 3.5 years the Rapture here, and then 7 years of great trouble in the world like never before. Terrible world demise of the world as we know it. Large numbers of people dying. If we say we have 7.5 billion in the world it will be reduced by billions dying during this Tribulation period. Millennial reigns, this is 1000 years and then the Eternal state.
Every one of these aspects would take a number of sermons to explain and give us an idea. We’ll touch on it and today we are speaking about the time we are in now. It’s a heavy subject. It’s kind of serious. It makes us think a little bit and helps us know what time it is. Let’s also say Praise God. Halleluiah. God has not left us here without some reference for where we are at and what is happening in the world…
Put the picture back up (timeline). This period here is the time we are talking bout. The Church Age. This is for today.
We are somewhere coming up to the time of the Rapture or HARPAZO, the Greek word used in 1 Thes. 4. The snatching away of the church. I would imagine you have heard of it before. To understand it will happen. No one knows when. Actually and literally the physical bodies of Christians who have been buried and bodies deteriorated into the biosphere, those bodies will be resurrected. We who are alive will not die. We will be changed in the twinkling of an eye. Instantly transformed and meeting Christ in the air. Two words for air. Air below Mt Olympus, below mountain level and air above the mountaintops. We will meet him in the air low. He will come close to the earth but not touch it. He is going to come like a thief in the night. The world will not know why or how necessarily. Someone could assume or make a correlation. Generally the world will be deceived. Not knowing or understanding why millions have left the earth. That sounds fantastic but is what the Scriptures is saying. We are looking forward to that day when we are taken out. We will go way back 2,000 years and make a reference to Abraham.
Ge. 12: It takes concentration because this is a teaching. It would be great preaching but I don’t know if that is happening.
vs. 2. God is speaking to Abraham. In thee shall all families of the earth shall be blessed. The date of this prophecy is 2000 B.C. to Abraham. We have the cross at this period and then we are here in 2018. We have 4000 years ago God made a promise to one man. Who was the first Jew? Abraham. How many were there when he was called. One, him. What about his family? He has none. He has Sarah. Sarah and Abraham. They are promised a great promise that they will be the center of world history. They will be the determining factor of blessing. Bless him you are blessed; curse him you are cursed. For all families.
If you go into eternity future we have in Revelation 7:9 this fulfillment. Where is this happening? In heaven. There is a great number no man can number. How many go to heaven? A number so great no man can number. And where do they come from? All nations. Let’s go back to Abraham. He had a seed Isaac, Jacob, 70 people go down into Egypt and come out about 2 million. This nation is from God.
This book from here to the portion we read we have a history of two lines. One is the biological line, the Jewish people and the promise to them and from that line came the seed of David. We have David back here given a promise he will have a throne and a son. His son will reign as king for how long? Forever. Well men don’t reign as kings forever. They die. But this son, the son of David will have a throne that will reign forever. So When Jesus came there was a blind man. What was his name? Bartimaeus. He cried out Son of David. Jesus stopped. He liked it. He liked this guy knows something. I am the Son of David, the king that will sit on the throne and reign forever. Whoever believes in him lives forever. That’s you and I. This is the Church.
We have in our Bible two lines: the Jews and the Church, the Gentiles and Jews that are born again, regenerate and saved. The earthly people are fulfilling a purpose and there is an unfolding plan. We have two last days here. If we take the cross and we have the church age and we have the end of the church age 2018, the whole period is called the last days. The church age is called the last days. It’s in the scheme of human history, if we say there are 6,000 years of human history. We are in the last period of that. That’s generally the perspective. Peter says we are in the last days and the apostolic teaching understand we are in the last days. Paul believed that. He also makes reference to the last part of the last days. This period is what we want to speak about. The Jewish people have the last days that start in the Tribulation period. This is 7 years and this is 1000. It’s called the Day of The Lord. We read about it in Amos and in Isaiah. It’s a dark time and a bright time. It’s a tragic time and an amazing kingdom time. A time when the Jewish holocaust which is incredibly sad, incredible that happened. Wow. It’s incredible that that murder of that degree happened in Europe by a sophisticated, educated, informed modern society. This should be evidence these are perilous, dangerous times. Yet that period doesn’t come close to the degree of trouble this nation will have in this period of time. Seven year period but most intense in the last three and a half. In the next weeks we will teach about these things.
It will raise questions in your mind so you need to read and study it. There are end times theologians and scholars I can give reference to: Pentecost, Ryrie, Chafer, and Mark Hitchcock more recent.
And you get the update of what is happening and where we are in unfolding Bible prophesy. We will be in heaven during the 7 year period but returning to be part of the millennial reign with Christ as he comes as a king. This time he came as a slave or servant to lay down his life. We study it and think about it and follow it. We want the same spirit that Christ had. We want to live in this world with the same spirit and wisdom and understanding of the Father and the unfolding plan. He made mention about this period when he was here the first time. He went nose to nose with the people.
Mt. 16: He is speaking with the Pharisees and Sadducees. What was the difference between them? In a word, the Pharisees are right wingers and lived by the letter of the law and severe in their judgments and how they treated people. They were tough and legalistic. Sadducees were left wingers. They didn’t believe in angels or the resurrection of the dead. If I live in my flesh I’m too tough, too legalistic, too severe in my judgments. The adulteress in Jn 8 should be stoned. And the other swing is a liberal soft one where we don’t believe in the word. Christ said you greatly err because you don’t know the Scriptures nor the power of God. That’s like liberal theology. They don’t believe in the virgin birth or the resurrection. Why are you even in the church you could say? Non biblical, feely emotional cultural orientation. The other way is right wing and letter of the law. Both groups crucified him. Both groups couldn’t see. What’s the answer? Be Spirit filled and doctrinally taught and understand the spirit of the Bible. What is God saying? What is his heart? Who is he and the truth would be revealed to me by the H.S. This is our desire as believers.
vs. 1. What does it mean? He goes you are looking for a sign but every day you look at the weather and can tell what is going to be coming. You are hypocrites. You could look at my life and tell that I am the Messiah. You are tempting me to answer in your terms but I can tell you straight up, you are hypocrites. That reminds me of a story.
Bertrand Russell was asked if you meet God what you would say to him. He was an atheist. I would ask him why he didn’t give more evidence of himself. I was thinking about that. You mean he hasn’t given enough evidence of himself? Really? Let me ask you a question. How did we find radio waves? It’s not so obvious. Do you know how we found it? We looked for it. If you looked for electricity and you found it. You found it and know what it is and many other invisible things that you found and you couldn’t find God? These people are lying. They don’t want God.
This is what Jesus is saying. You predict the weather but can’t tell what time it is when I’m here raising the dead and feeding the multitudes. You’re liars and hypocrites. I believe he is saying if we are Spirit filled and Bible believing we will look at the times we are living in and find some reference and say it is like Jesus said. It is happening.
There are three points I want to make about this period we are at. I believe we are there. Every period when you had Spirit filled people, they believed Jesus was coming in their life time. You’re believing get in the sense that it is possible. Paul believed it. He said we that remain. First the dead bodies go up and we that remain. That means he believed it would happen in his life time. Luther had a general date, 1537 I think he believed Jesus was coming back. Nobody knows the day or hour. We start reading the Scriptures and think about it. Because we are told nobody knows the day or hour we can’t be so specific but can have a feeling. When Jesus came first time did anyone know about it? Yes. There were people that knew. There were others waiting for him to come.
Da 9:24-25 tells us about the time of his coming. Do you know that? That’s a great prophesy. 173,880 days. Daniel gave the number of days for Messiah to be murdered or cut off for the people and make the transgression of sin and deal with it. Why would we say we are living in this time?
We have three points: 1) Israel has returned. There’s more points but I’m using three this morning. 2) Globalism. 3) Apostasy in the church. The church falling away from apostolic teaching.
Why do we believe that this is, – we get excited when we read that Israel continues to be at the center and it was called Palestine in the 19th century. Israel was part of the British Empire. I have some statistics.
Mt. 24:1-3 He blew up at the religious system and order of the day. He preached to them, exhorted them.
Chapter 23 is filled with his hard words. Then he left. Disciples make reference to the buildings. He doesn’t care basically. He sees into history. They are going to be destroyed. It happened by the Romans in 69 and 70 A.D. Totally leveled. The stones were taken down and the temple had gold and the heat of the fire and the gold melted between the stones and in the ashes the thieves and anyone who wanted gold would run away with it. The stones will be taken apart and this will be over. He walks down the valley and up to Mt. Olives. You can look down the city from there.
vs. 3. He answered them. He could have said there isn’t any such thing. I ‘m not coming again or there is no end of the age. But he didn’t. Thes time lines are precise and the unfolding plan of God is a part of our way of thinking. I like to think he’s maintaining and fulfilling his purposes. He is gone and we are here and there is something ahead we can see. Just as in the past we can see so we are helped in our lives to anticipate what is coming.
The Jewish people are key. The time piece, the clock has a lot to do with these people. It’s an earthly people so you can time it like a stop watch. Israel is back. How did it happen? For almost 2000 years they were scattered in 70 countries. They were in Egypt, Assyria, Babylon, Persian, Greece, and Rome. The land had been destroyed. The Romans made it illegal to be a Jew in the holy land in 122 A.D. They were driven out and gone. True story. I was in a café in Budapest and a man with a beard and cane and old guy. I sat next to him and started talking. Where are you from and we had a talk. He said I’m from Israel. I said were you born there? No, my parents walked there from Turkmenistan. How long did it take? Four years. Working and living on the way. Where did this come from that you say I am a Jew? Why do people say that that there is a Jewish identity? Almost 2,000 years with almost a dead language. Hebrew. It was spoken only in synagogues. Like us speaking Latin and we start speaking it and it’s alive again. That we speak Latin. That doesn’t happen. In Hebrew it happened. They speak Hebrew in Israel and Yiddish and Aramaic. Other languages too. In 1871, there were a few Jews in Israel, in 1881, 25,000 Jews in Israel. The leader of the Zionist movement adopted the goal of bringing them back. By 1914 there were 80,000. By end of World War II, there were 650,000 and today there is 5.2 million Jews in Israel.
Why is that important? The prophets that spoke about war and Armageddon and those prophesies that relate to coming of Christ, that Israel must, for them to have a temple and offering sacrifices. For antichrist to come and make peace with Israel, Israel must exist but 100 years ago it didn’t. The population is growing. Planes of people coming from France and Norway. There is a rise of antisemitism in Europe and they are coming to Israel for stability. We have more than 5 million in our country. The country is growing and it irritates the Arab nations. It is a sign of the times we are living in. Another one is globalism. What other time in history have we been talking with the whole world like we are today? You can go to Facebook or another social media venue, we see on TV and YouTube and we communicate and global mentality and ideas and views are permeating our culture like never before. Added to this is money. Money is big issue in book of Revelation. It appears the antichrist will be on top of this globalism will have the authority to control people’s buying and selling. Buying and selling. It looks like there is some kind of world market or economy linked together. We know that’s true in some degree. Chine, Japanese, European and American economies. If we go down it affects everyone else. Economy is a big part of what we are looking at in the future. Would it change and go back to local, national economies isolated from others? We could say if all the satellites went down or the internet went down, maybe we would see a change. But we don’t feel that. We don’t feel we are going to go back to a more simple way of life but we will be connected more and more and more involvement with a global government. That looks like what Revelation is saying. Buying and selling can’t happen without the mark of the beast. I few were saying this in 19th century it would be hard to understand the impact but we feel it and see it with the internet. It’s more dangerous than it used to be. Who is going to make these decisions? Israel and globalism, they go together. The world is against Israel. Generally against Israel. Why? Because God made a promise to Abraham. The best way to foil it is to destroy these people. If Satan could destroy them, he could mock God. He would be able to say I am more powerful than you. Every time he does his trick it backfires. He goes after them and they multiply. He killed 6 million of them in Europe by Hitler who was demonically inspired. He was an antichrist. The government, the Natzism where antichrist. Do you have any discernment regarding the spirit of antichrist? Do you know what the antichrist mentality as smooth, powerful, effective, in charge? You got to know that. If I can tell, if I can sense what is going on I trust God, the Holy Spirit to teach me and keep me.You cannot go anti-Semitic or you are against God.
Ge 12:2, History is filled with it. I don’t care who you are or what you government is saying. You pray for them and you are on their side. That’s the way it is. The propaganda of Germany…the racism, the right wing tough hatred fanaticism of the nation and what they did is an incredible lesson. This will be repeated. There will be a liberal wing too. This will be soft, gentle, compromising. No truth in it. It will be opinions of people and feeling. Israel will be deceived because they will have a leader that will say I can solve your problems in the Middle East. I can help you. And he will. He is called The Antichrist. We will go. We are watching the formation of what is going to happen with Antichrist and the trouble here. The Antichrist will help the Jews. They are in a world against them. Antichrist rises to power and will be a solution for their trouble and will say he is the Messiah. But he isn’t. He’s on the same line as Hitler. The same spirit but even more so. He will sit in the temple. We say in our eschatology the temple in Israel must exist in order for him to set in the temple and make himself like God.
Paul said in 2 Thes. 2. Son of perdition. He makes himself like God and the true nature of him will go after the Jewish people. 5.2 million In Israel and it happens in Jerusalem. Jesus said don’t go back and get your coat and woe unto you if you are pregnant in those days. You have to run for your life.
He will come down with great wrath in Rev. 12. That’s what we are looking at. Last part is church and apostasy.
1 Tim 4: I don’t know if you can handle more. Are you done? That’s it what we just said. It’s incredible. I just want to go live on a farm in Montana! Disappear! I want to immigrate to New Zealand where nobody is! No, I’m glad we are here. I’m glad we got something going on in our hearts that is valuable. The church is important. We are watching and seeing.
1 Tim 4:1-latter times, that’s now. This is the U.S. and we are a Christian nation. A lot of churches. Lutheran in Midwest and Baptists in the south. Methodists, Catholics. We have a Christian background. But only way to be a Christian is be born again. If not, it was like growing up, I grew up in the Catholic Church but not a believer. Morally it affected me but I also was a sinner and like all of us I didn’t know Jesus. I didn’t know who God was. When I believed in Jesus Christ I was born again, and now the Spirit of God lives in you. Now you are able to believe in your heart. It comes home to you. It doesn’t matter the building as long as Christ is there and H.S. love. The Bible is being preached and we have fellowship with each other and walk in the newness of life. In our country we are concerned because if you don’t have the new birth, how can you stand against this direction of seducing spirits.
vs. 1. This is Mark Hitchcock I’m quoting. “Presbyterian church approved homosexual marriage.” It splits churches. The Anglican Church had a split. The Supreme Court made a decision. “A well-known Christian leader is in favor of gay marriage. Campoulo. His rationale was explained in CBN news. It was his own relationship with his wife and the many same-sex couples they know and spend time with that persuaded him that the primary purpose of marriage is about spiritual growth.” He also wrote that “homosexuality is almost never a choice and the church should offer love and acceptance to those who have same-sex attraction. It has taken countless hours of prayer, study, conversation, emotional turmoil, to bring me to the place where I am final ready to call for the full acceptance of Christian gay couples into the church.”
Wait a minute. What? Have you read? Have you studied? Have you embraced it? This is 2,000 years of Christian history. When it was born in the Roman Empire, where this was unacceptable by the apostle Paul, 1 Cor 6:9-10, 1 Tim 1:8-10, Rom 1:27.
In the O.T. Lev. 18 and Lev. 22. It’s an abomination. What happened? Why all of this? What is going on? Why can’t we say something is going on? Love.
Because we love each other. I have this attraction and I love this man. I don’t understand that. Love. Wait a minute. What if I loved a seven year old girl and what if she loves me? What about my dog. I love my dog and to have sex with a dog because of love? Is that love? I don’t understand what we are talking about. Are we talking about your feelings and inclinations and imagination, your fantasy and your lust? What are we talking about? Seducing spirits and doctrines of devils so there will be a great falling away. I say something in the service one time about homosexuality and a young lady met me at the door and was angry at me. I talked with her for a minute. That means to me that we have a divide somewhere in the church. That there are Christians and the younger generation is being taught and led and directed in a way of thinking where something wrong is not being told it is wrong but instead we that have a different view are called bigoted, narrow , intolerant judgmental and hateful. Wait? Am I hateful? I don’t have hate in my heart. I love people. I don’t know what they are in that way. I’m not investigating. I have love in my heart. Now I’m labeled that. I know what is happening here.
I realize there is also a falling away from the way you and I or anybody in Church history. It’s not about us it’s about J.C. And what is J.C. saying to us. He is saying you’re going to cave. You’re going to cave under the pressure. You think you’ll get out of this mess when you cave and you have this whole thing in the church happening.
Then it becomes how many partners can you have and adultery and the church is the same as our culture. By the way, it doesn’t matter to me if our church is small. It matters God shows up in the church. We had a family here and I don’t know what happened but they left because of the homosexual issue. There will be a lot of people departing from the faith. When it’s right. When the H.S. is with you and guiding you, you get firing on all cylinders. I got it. Halleluiah. You’re not judgmental but loving. There is so much hypocrisy in this thing. Jesus said you people are hypocrites. Many signs given you but you say show us a sign. You need to be corrected and humbled. You don’t get very far with proud people. If I am proud, God resists the proud but gives grace to the humble. You find spiritual life. This book becomes an open book to you. You start to practice it and live by it.
Rob Bell is an apostate. Former pastor of Mars Hill church. Appeared with his wife and Oprah Winfrey on her Super Soul Sunday program. When asked about the church embracing same sex marriage, Rob Bell said “we’re moments away. I think the culture is already there. And the church will continue to be even more irrelevant when it quotes letters from 2,000 years ago as their best defense.” Woe. He is totally discounting the Scriptures and you read him? Our young people read him and follow him?
Brian McLaren is another one, the Emerging church. They pick and choose what they want to believe based on their feelings and preferences.
If I did that I’d be smoking marijuana today. But God told me to give it up. And if I was a Christian smoking marijuana, where would my life be? Where would it go? I don’t know. I just know if you cheat God has a way of dealing with you. In your life, God has a way of resisting you. Why not go to a church where you are told straight up and have a Bible you read and get on your knees. God show me and lead me in the way because this is the age of falling away.
2 Thes. 2:3 a falling away, apostasy. It means a doctrinal falling away. Some say physically going away like the Rapture but most say it’s a departure from apostolic faith. Pastor Stevens preached a message about Corporate Pentecost, about the outpouring of revival before the Rapture. When there will be a fire of God moving in the church. And we pray for that and hope that will happen. I believe it. I believe there will be an outpouring. I believe God will do something before the Rapture happens. But I also believe generally it will be a falling away because that’s what it says. Generally I think people will be departing from the faith and preferring their own feeling, own judgments, own sense of right and wrong and will live that way instead of by the mind of Christ and the Holy Spirit teaching us.
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