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Deja Vu

Discussion in 'Eschatology - Endtimes & Prophecy Forum' started by Willie T, May 11, 2018.

  1. Willie T

    Willie T St. Petersburg Vineyard

    The first four paragraphs of this kind of surprised me..... thus, the rest was quite interesting.

    An eschatological theme that is as widely misunderstood as it is commonly discussed in popular prophetic literature is the "last days.” This factor of eschatological chronology is an important concept that requires a deep appreciation of the complexity of God's sovereign governance of history and the outworking of His redemptive purposes. Unfortunately, the idea of the last days is greatly abused by many.

    In a popular work, the writer comments about those that were living among the "generation” (Matt. 24:34) of World War I: "There is no question that we are living in the last days. The fact that we are the generation that will be on the earth when our Lord comes certainly should not depress us."

    The average Christian believes his is the very last times, that he is living in the shadow of the Second Coming. Consider some representative statements pointing in alarm to the imminence of the end in the "last days":
    (1) The Antichrist "is now close at hand.”
    (2) "The world is failing, passing away, and it witnesses to its ruin, not now by the age, but by the end of things.” Because of this the Christian should know
    (3) that "still more terrible things are imminent.” Indeed,
    (4) "Already the heavenly fire is giving birth, already the approach of divine punishment is manifest, already the doom of coming disaster is heralded.”
    (5) Because of world circumstances the plea is: "Consider, I beg you, whether the age can bear this for long?”
    (6) "All creation now waits in suspense for his arrival. The world, which must be transformed anew, is already pregnant with the end that is to come on the final day.” How often have we heard such cries of the end? Are not these the concerns of so many of the current crop of prophetic studies so wildly popular in our time?

    I should confess to the reader, though, that I have not been entirely up front. All of the statements in the immediately preceding paragraph were made, not by contemporary prophetic writers, but by Christians living well over a thousand years ago. The following is a list of the sources:
    Number (1) is from Tertullian (160-220), De Fuga 12.
    Numbers (2) and (3) are from Cyprian (A.D. 195-258), De Mort 25.
    Number (4) is from Firmicus Maternus (ca. A.D. 346), De Errore Profanarum Religion 25:3.
    Number (5) is from Evodius of Uzala (ca. A.D. 412).
    Number (6) is from Paulinus of Nola (A.D. 353-431). Too many have misunderstood the eschatology of Scripture and the function of the "last days” in eschatology — and that, for untold hundreds of years.

    Properly understood the idea of the last days is focused on the most important episode of history: the life of Jesus Christ lived out in fulfillment of divine prophecy and of redemptive history. Christ is the focal point of all Scripture. He is anticipated in the Old Testament revelation and realized in the New: "You search the Scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life; and these are they which testify of Me” (John 5:39). As such He stands as history's dividing line — hence the historical appropriateness and theological significance of dividing history between B.C. and A.D.

    There are many prophetic references looking forward to the "Messianic age of consummation” introduced by Christ. This era is frequently deemed "the last days” or "the latter days." "The expression then properly denoted the future times in general; but, as the coming of the Messiah was to the eye of a Jew the most important event in the coming ages, the great, glorious, and crowning scene in all that vast futurity, the phrase came to be regarded as properly expressive of that. It was a phrase in contrast with the days of the patriarchs, the kings, the prophets, etc. The last days, or the closing period of the world, were the days of the Messiah." His coming was "nothing less than the beginning of the great eschaton of history."

    It is when Christ came that "the fullness of times” was realized: "The phrase pleroma tou chronou, Gal. iv. 4, implies an orderly unrolling of the preceding stages of world-history towards a fixed end." Hence, the preparatory preaching at the beginning of His ministry: "The time is fulfilled, the kingdom of God is at hand” (Mark 1:15; Matthew 4:17). Prior to this, the Old Testament era was typological and anticipatory. The Old Testament era served as the "former days” (Mal. 3:4) that gave way to the "last days,” the times initiated by Christ's coming: "God, who at various times and in different ways spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets has in these last days spoken to us by His Son, whom He has appointed heir of all things” (Hebrews 1:1-2).

    Thus, we find frequent references to the presence of the last days during the New Testament time. The last days are initiated by the appearance of the Son (Hebrews 1:2; 1 Peter 1:20) to effect redemption (Hebrews 9:26) and by His pouring out of the Spirit (Acts 2:16, 17, 24; cf. Isa. 32:15; Zech. 12:10). The "ends of the ages” comes during the apostolic era (1 Cor. 10:11). These will run until "the last day,” when the resurrection/judgment occurs to end history (John 6:39; 11:24; 12:48). But before the final end point is reached, perilous times will punctuate the era of the end (2 Timothy 3:1) and mockers will arise (2 Peter 3:3).

    The last days of Old Testament prophecy anticipated the establishment of Mount Zion/Jerusalem as the enduring spiritual and cultural influence through the era. This came in the first century with the establishment of the New Covenant phase of the Church, the focal point of the kingdom of Christ (cf. Joel 2 with Acts 2:16ff; Hebrews 12:18-27).

    Because the last days have been with us since the first-century coming of Christ, there are no days to follow. There is no millennium that will introduce another grand redemptive era in man's history (see discussion of "Millennium” below). With the coming of Christ, earth history reached "epochal finality." The idea of the appearance of Christ as the "Last Adam” (1 Cor. 15:45) is indicative that there is no different historical age to follow. The finality has come, though it has undergone continuous development since its arrival in the ministry of Christ.

    It is primarily in the dispensational literature of the millennial discussion that reference to the "last days” generates erroneous conclusions. Dispensationalists point to contemporary international social decline as indicative of the onset of the "last days": "The key that would unlock the prophetic book would be the current events that would begin to fit into the predicted pattern." "The conflicts that we see in our world today are symptoms of the day in which we live. They may be symptoms of the last days." Such observations overlook the biblical function of the "last days” in regard to the grand sweep of redemptive history. The "last days” of postmillennialism comprise the great era of redemptive history that gradually will issue forth in historical victory for the Church of Jesus Christ; the "last days” of dispensationalism introduce the collapsing of culture as the Great Tribulation looms (after which will follow the discontinuous personal reign of Christ on earth).
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  2. keras

    keras Writer of Bible prophecy studies.

    New Zealand
    Our Future is Revealed to us:
    It is obvious to anyone who looks at the situation in the Middle East, that there is nothing man can do that will resolve the critical issues there.

    God will use people’s actions and His creation to achieve His purposes, as in the past, so according to Bible prophesy: at the point of attack onto Israel, God will intervene with an explosion of the suns surface, Isaiah 30:26, Psalms 50:1-3, that will affect all the world, but in particular all the area of the holy Land. Deuteronomy 32:43

    It is clear, from all the prophesied graphic descriptions: that this will be a terrible devastation by fire, earthquakes, storms and tsunamis and the result will virtually depopulate the entire Middle East. Ezekiel 30:2-5, Jeremiah 10:18
    This event is the great and terrible Day of the Lords vengeance and wrath. Isaiah 63:1-6, Isaiah 66:15-16, Zephaniah 1: 14-18 & 3:8, Amos 1 & 2:1-5

    Malachi 4:1 The Day comes, burning like a furnace. All evildoers will be as stubble.
    Isaiah 66:15-16 The Lord coming in fire... many will be slain by Him.
    Isaiah 9:18 The land is scorched by the Lord, the people are fuel for the fire.
    Ezekiel 29:45-48, Hebrews 10:27, 2 Peter 3:7 It is also the Sixth Seal judgement as described in Revelation 6:12-17, Jeremiah 4:25-29, Isaiah 2:12-22

    Many prophecies tell of the final judgement of Judah: Jeremiah 7:20 I will pour out My anger on Judah, man and beast, trees and crops, they will burn unquenched. Ezekiel 21:1-7, Isaiah 22:14

    Psalm 83:1-18 describes very well how the State of Israel’s enemies plot against them, and what will happen to them. Micah 4:11-12 A remnant of Jewish believers will survive in Jerusalem. Isaiah 4:3, Isaiah 6:11-12, Zechariah 13:8-9

    After that: Ezekiel 36:8 But you, Land of Israel, put forth your branches and yield fruit for My people, Righteous Israel, for their homecoming is near. Zechariah 8:11-13, Amos 9:13-15

    All of the Lord’s people will be gathered into the holy Land. Isaiah 66:18-21, Ezekiel 34:11-31 The Lord will then judge His people and only the righteous Christian believers will settle in the Promised Land.
    They will establish the new nation of Beulah. Isaiah 62:1-5, Isaiah 66:7-14

    Ezekiel 20:35-38 I shall make you pass under the rod of Judgement…..those who revolt and rebel will not enter the holy Land.
    Isaiah 1:25-28.Once again, I shall act against you, to purge away all your impurities. Gods people, [the Christian Israel of God, Galatians 6:16], will settle and become prosperous in a blessed and fertile land. Isaiah 35:1-10, Ezekiel 34:11-31

    Ezekiel 39:25-29 The Lord says; now I shall restore the fortunes of Jacob.
    Who are now the spiritual Israelite peoples, those qualified by faith, not by ethnicity. Galatians 3:26-29

    They will forget their shame and unfaithfulness when they live once more safely in their inheritance. [Romans 8:14-17] When I gather them from all the lands, they will be an example to the nations of My Holiness. They will acknowledge Me as their God, when they all live in their heritage; the Promised Land. I will no longer hide Myself from them, I who have poured out My Spirit upon them.

    After a few years, God will motivate the leader of a Northern alliance to prepare for war and attack Israel. God will destroy the entire army with fire, earthquakes and causing them to fight each other. Ezekiel 38 & 39, the Gog from Magog attack.
    Joel 2:20 I shall remove the Northern peril far from you and banish them into the desert. Half of the army: by the Mediterranean and the other half by the Dead Sea. The stench and foul smell from them will rise up. He has done great things!

    This He will do in order to; Ezekiel 39:21-22 ... display My glory to the nations... From that day forward, the Israelites will know that I am the Lord their God

    Note; that the Lord will make Himself known by His actions to His righteous people, and to the world, but not by His presence until His Return in glory at the commencement of His Millennial reign. After the armies of this Northern alliance are destroyed, the people of Beulah [Isaiah 62:1-5] will send out teams to collect the dead. They will be buried in the valley of Wadi al Mawjib, East of the Dead Sea. This will take seven months, then seven years is needed to finally clear up all the debris of the army. This tremendous defeat of a very large and well equipped army, will have dramatic repercussions. On top of the already huge disruptions caused by the previous worldwide devastation – food and oil shortages, economic crisis, refugee problems, etc. The world’s leaders will meet and the most logical way to address all the issues, is to form a One World government. Daniel 7:23-24, Rev 17:12-13. Initially ten rulers will share the authority, but after a short while, they will confer their power onto one man. The President of this World Alliance will be a charismatic and strong leader, he will quickly take dictatorial powers over it. Daniel 11:21

    Meanwhile, in Jerusalem, construction of the Third Temple will be completed, Zech. 6:15, Revelation 11:1, and the Shekinah glory of God will enter it. Ezekiel 43:2
    12,000 missionaries will be selected from each of the 12 divisions of Beulah and they will go out in pairs to every people group in the world to preach the gospel of Gods Kingdom to come. Isaiah 66:19, Revelation 7:3-8 As was done previously: Luke 10:1-10

    Beulah will not join the One World government, but in order to maintain peaceful relations, Beulah will sign a seven year peace treaty with them. Daniel 9:27

    After 3½ years, the world leader will be assassinated, but his body will be taken over by Satan. Revelation 13:3-4 He will come in force to Beulah, Zechariah 14:1-2, and establish worship of himself in the Temple. Matthew 24:15 So, when you see the ‘abomination of desolation’ standing in the Holy place as prophesied by Daniel 7:25
    He will defy the Most High and will persecute the holy people of God. They will be in his power for 3½ years. Rev 13:9-10.

    In Rev 12:6, it says that there will be a place of safety for some of Gods people, those who stood firm in their faith. Daniel 11:32b, Matthew 24:15-21.

    During this last 3½ year period, the Great Tribulation of the Seven Trumpets and the Seven Bowls of God’s wrath poured upon the earth will cause terrible destruction and deaths to the ungodly peoples. Matthew 24:21-22, Revelation 16:11

    It all culminates in the Battle of Armageddon – Revelation 16:16. That is when the Lord Jesus will return to the earth in His glory and destroys those armies in His mighty power. Rev. 19:15 & Zechariah 14:3-5. Lucifer (Satan) will be chained and imprisoned and Jesus will rule the world for 1000 years. Then, Satan will be released for a short time. He will seduce the nations and will muster them for war, a vast army from all around the world. They will lay siege to Gods City. Fire comes down from heaven and cremates them all. Satan is thrown into the lake of fire. Revelation 20:7-9. Then will come the Great White Throne judgement of all people and the angels. Revelation 20:11-14, Daniel 7:9-10