“These twelve Jesus sent out with the following instructions: ‘Do not go among the Gentiles or enter any town of the Samaritans. Go rather to the lost sheep of Israel. As you go, proclaim this message: ‘The kingdom of heaven has come near.’ Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy, drive out demons. Freely you have received; freely give.
‘Do not get any gold or silver or copper to take with you in your belts – no bag for the journey or extra shirt or sandals or a staff, for the worker is worth his keep. Whatever town or village you enter, search there for some worthy person and stay at their house until you leave. As you enter the home, give your greeting. If the home is deserving, let your peace rest on it; if it is not, let your peace return to you. If anyone will not welcome you or listen to your words, leave that home or town and shake the dust off your feet. Truly I tell you, it will be more bearable for Sodom and Gomorrah on that day of judgment than for that town.
‘I am sending you out like sheep among wolves. Therefore be as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves. Be on your guard; you will be handed over to the local councils and be flogged in the synagogues. On my account you will be brought before governors and kings as witnesses to them and to the Gentiles. But when they arrest you, do not worry about what to say or how to say it. At that time you will be given what to say, for it will not be you speaking, but the Spirit of the Father speaking through you.
‘Brother will betray brother to death, and a father his child; children will rebel against their parents and have them put to death. You will be hated by everyone because of me, but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved. When you are persecuted in one place, flee to another. Truly I tell you, you will not finish going through the towns of Israel before the Son of Man comes.
‘The student is not above the teacher, nor a servant above his master. It is enough for students to be like their teachers, and servants like their masters. If the head of the house has been called Beelzebul, how much more the members of his household!
‘So do not be afraid of them, for there is nothing concealed that will not be disclosed, or hidden that will not be made known. What I tell you in the dark, speak in the daylight; what is whispered in your ear, proclaim from the roofs. Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the one who can destroy both soul and body in hell. Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground outside your Father’s care. And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.
‘Whoever acknowledges me before others, I will also acknowledge before my Father in heaven. But whoever disowns me before others, I will disown before my Father in heaven.
‘Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I do not come to bring peace, but a sword. For I have come to turn ‘a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law, a man’s enemies will be the members of his own household.’
‘Anyone who loves their father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves their son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. Whoever does not take up their cross and follows me is not worthy of me. Whoever finds their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life for my sake will find it.
‘Anyone who welcomes you welcomes me, and anyone who welcomes me welcomes the one who sent me. Whoever welcomes a prophet as a prophet will receive a prophet’s reward, and whoever welcomes a righteous person as a righteous person will receive a righteous person’s reward. And if anyone gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones who is my disciples, truly I tell you, that person will certainly not lose their reward.’” (Matthew 10: 5-42)
The instruction that Jesus gave to his disciples as they began their ministry is no different than the instruction needed by the modern saints. Jesus was very specific as to what would happen then and how they must conduct themselves. They were to be welcomed by few but persecuted by many. Above all else, the disciples were instructed to not fear anyone or anything except God himself!
We live in a society where we fear nothing. The citizens of the modern world have all our needs fulfilled and technology is unlocking wonders mankind has only dreamed of. We long for nothing as we have everything we could ever think of, and this is just the general public. The wealthy among us rule the land, pursuing their own desires and using the masses as pawns in their game of financial conquest. They play games with the lives of those below them and see the masses as an asset to be used for their delight. The loss of life is viewed as collateral damage and as long as the ends justify the means, a few casualties can be overlooked. Besides, this world has been built upon the sacrifice of many to enrich the few.
We see this being played out on the world scene like no other time in history. All the world’s armies are gathering in the Middle East while economic war is crashing currencies all around the globe. We as Americans are told that we will endure a little heartache but we will be victorious in the end, all while people are suffering all over the world. The worth of modern human life depends on the amount of assets one accumulates.
This lack of fear by our rulers has caused the world to see prophetic events unfolding within the Middle East. All over the world, people are proclaiming that the prophecies revealed within the Bible are being played out in real time. Seeing these events unfold is truly amazing but the most staggering fact is the amount of arrogance portrayed by the followers of Christ. The world is watching Christians longing for war against Israel as this would bring about the coming of their Messiah. This belief is true according to Scripture but the fact that these same Christians are not afraid of what this truly means is horrifying.
We were told by the prophet Ezekiel that the armies of Gog and Magog would join forces and invade the Holy Land. We are being taught that this would be a glorious thing as Israel will destroy these armies as they are God’s chosen people and he has promised to protect them. Besides we are in the last days so it would make sense that God would protect his people without witnessing their destruction. The only problem is this is not what Scripture tells us:
“Jerusalem staggers, Judah is falling; their words and deeds are against the Lord, defying his glorious presence. The look on their faces testifies against them; they parade their sin like Sodom; they do not hide it. Woe to them! They have brought disaster upon themselves.
Tell the righteous it will be well with them, for they will enjoy the fruit of their deeds. Woe to the wicked! Disaster is upon them! They will be paid back for what their hands have done.
Youths oppress my people, women rule over them. My people, your guides lead you astray; they turn you from the path.
The Lord takes his place in court; he rises to judge the people. The Lord enters into judgment against the elders and leaders for his people: ‘It is you who have ruined my vineyard; the plunder from the poor is in your houses. What do you mean by crushing my people and grinding the faces of the poor?’ declares the Lord, the Lord Almighty.
The Lord says, ‘The women of Zion are haughty, walking along with outstretched necks, flirting with their eyes, strutting along with swaying hips, with ornaments jingling on their ankles. Therefore the Lord will bring sores on the heads of the women of Zion; the Lord will make their scalps bald.’
In that day the Lord will snatch away their finery: the bangles and headbands and crescent necklaces, the earrings and bracelets and veils, the headdresses and anklets and sashes, the perfume bottles and charms, the signet rings and nose rings, the fine robes and capes and cloaks, the purses and mirrors, and the linen garments and tiaras and shawls.
Instead of fragrance there will be a stench; instead of a sash, a rope; instead of well-dressed hair, baldness; instead of fine clothing, sackcloth; instead of beauty, branding. Your men will fall by the sword, your warriors in battle. The gates of Zion will lament and mourn; destitute, she will sit on the ground. (Isaiah 3: 8-26)
The destruction of the Jewish people and their symbolic capital of Jerusalem are depicted in detail within the book of Isaiah. The prophet depicts the judgment of Israel and describes how they will be overcome in battle and will be brought to ruin. This is completely contradictory to what is being taught within the Christian Church today. Modern Christians are being taught that God will miraculously protect Israel and Gog and Magog will be destroyed. This is partially true:
‘Therefore, son of man, prophesy and say to Gog: ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: in that day, when my people Israel are living in safety, will you not take notice of it? You will come from your place in the far north, you and many nations with you, all of them riding on horses, a great horde, a might army. You will advance against my people Israel like a cloud that covers the land. In days to come, Gog, I will bring you against my land, so that the nations may know me when I am proved holy through you before their eyes.
‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: You are the one I spoke of in former days by my servants the prophets of Israel. At that time they prophesied for years that I would bring you against them. This is what will happen in that day: When Gog attacks the land of Israel, my hot anger will be aroused, declares the Sovereign Lord. In my zeal and fiery wrath I declare that at that time there shall be a great earthquake in the land of Israel. The fish in the sea, the birds in the sky, the beasts of the field, every creature that moves along the ground, and all the people on the face of the earth will tremble at my presence. The mountains will be overturned, the cliffs will crumble and every wall will fall to the ground. I will summon a sword against Gog on all my mountains, declares the Sovereign Lord. Every man’s sword will be against his brother. I will execute judgment on him with plague and bloodshed; I will pour down torrents of rain, hailstones and burning sulfur on him and on his troops and on the many nations with him. And so I will show my greatness and my holiness, and I will make myself known in the sight of many nations. Then they will know that I am the Lord.’ (Ezekiel 38: 14-23)
There is no miraculous protection that comes over Israel during the Gog/Magog war. The armies of Gog are allowed to overcome the land like a cloud and the armies will advance against the state of Israel. This gives the illustration that the land of Israel will be overcome prior to the appearance of God Himself! The part that no one is explaining is that there will be a massive earthquake followed by the arrival of the Sovereign Lord!
Finally when God has had enough He comes down to earth to issue judgment. We are told about His judgment and we should all be afraid of the prospect of His revealing to the world! The arrival of our Lord is also explained by the prophet Malachi:
“‘I will send my messenger, who will prepare the way before me. Then suddenly the Lord you are seeking will come to his temple; the messenger of the covenant, whom you desire, will come,’ says the Lord Almighty.
But who can endure the day of his coming? Who can stand when he appears? For he will be like a refiner’s fire or a launderer’s soap. He will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver; he will purify the Levites and refine then like gold and silver. Then the Lord will have men who will bring offerings in righteousness, and the offerings of Judah and Jerusalem will be acceptable to the Lord, as in days gone by, as in former years.
‘So I will come to put you on trial. I will be quick to testify against sorcerers, adulterers and perjurers, against those who defraud laborers of their wages, who oppress the widows and the fatherless, and deprive the foreigners among you of justice, but do not fear me,’ says the Lord Almighty.” (Malachi 3: 1-5)
The Lord’s arrival was also described by the prophet Amos:
“This is what the Sovereign Lord showed me: a basket of ripe fruit. ‘What do you see, Amos?’ he asked. ‘A basket of ripe fruit,’ I answered. Then the Lord said to me, ‘The time is ripe for my people Israel; I will spare them no longer.’
‘In that day,’ declares the Sovereign Lord, ‘the songs in the temple will turn to wailing. Many, many bodies – flung everywhere! Silence!’
Here this, you who trample the needy and do away with the poor of the land, saying, ‘When will the New Moon be over that we may sell grain, and the Sabbath be ended that we may market wheat?’ – skimping on the measure, boosting the price and cheating with dishonest scales, buying the poor with silver and the needy for a pair of sandals, selling even the sweepings with the wheat.
The Lord has sworn by himself, the Pride of Jacob: ‘I will never forget anything they have done. Will not the land tremble for this, and all who live in it mourn? The whole land will rise like the Nile; it will be stirred up and then sink like the river of Egypt. ‘
‘In that day,’ declares the Sovereign Lord, ‘I will make the sun go down at noon and darken the earth in broad daylight. I will turn your religious festivals into mourning and all your singing into weeping. I will make all of you wear sackcloth and shave your heads. I will make that time like mourning for an only son and the end of it like a bitter day.’
‘The days are coming,’ declares the Sovereign Lord, ‘when I will send a famine through the land – not a famine of food or a thirst for water, but a famine of hearing the words of the Lord. People will stagger from sea to sea and wander from north to east, searching for the word of the Lord, but they will not find it. ‘In that day the lovely young women and strong young men will faint because of thirst. (Amos 8: 1-13)
It’s easy to see that the coming of our Lord is not something that the wicked will want to witness. The judgment of mankind will come swiftly and without pity in the eyes of the Lord. Considering we are all guilty of sin and deserve death, we should hope and pray that we are worthy enough to know him: “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23)
The Old Testament prophets are also very clear that there will be a massive earthquake that will shake the foundation of this earth. The arrival of our Lord will bring about a sign that will cause anyone who does not already fear the Lord to run into the mountains hiding themselves. This earthquake is also depicted three different times in the book of Revelation:
“I watched as he opened the sixth seal. There was a great earthquake. The sun turned black like sackcloth made of goat hair, the whole moon turned blood red, and the stars in the sky fell to earth, as figs drop from a fig tree when shaken by a strong wind. The heavens receded like a scroll being rolled up, and every mountain and island was removed from its place.
Then the kings of the earth, the princes, the generals, the rich, the mighty, and everyone else, both slave and free, hid in caves and among the rocks of the mountains. They called to the mountains and rocks, ‘Fall on us and hid us form the face of him who sits on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb! For the great day of their wrath has come, and who can withstand it?” (Revelation 6: 12-17)
“Now when they have finished their testimony, the beast that comes up from the Abyss will attack them, and overpower and kill them. Their bodies will lie in the public square of the great city – which is figuratively called Sodom and Egypt – where also their Lord was crucified. For three and a half days some from every people, tribe, language and nation will gaze on their bodies and refuse them burial. The inhabitants of the earth will gloat over them and will celebrate by sending each other gifts, because these two prophets had tormented those who live on the earth.
But after the three and a half days the breath of life from God entered them, and they stood on their feet, and terror struck those who saw them. Then they heard a loud voice from heaven saying to them, ‘Come up here.’ And they went up to heaven in a cloud, while their enemies looked on.
At that very hour there was a severe earthquake and a tenth of the city collapsed. Seven thousand people were killed in the earthquake, and the survivors were terrified and gave glory to the God of heaven. The second woe has passed; the third woe is coming soon.” (Revelation 11: 7-14)
“The sixth angle poured out his bowl on the great river Euphrates, and its water was dried up to prepare the way for the kings from the East. Then I saw three impure spirits that looked like frogs; they came out of the mouth of the dragon, out of the mouth of the beast and out of the mouth of the false prophet. They are demonic spirits that perform signs, and they go out to the kings of the whole world, to gather them for the battle on the great day of God Almighty.
‘Look, I come like a thief! Blessed is the one who stays awake and remains clothed, so as not to go naked and be shamefully exposed.’
Then they gathered the kings together to the place that in Hebrew is called Armageddon.
The seventh angel poured out his bowl into the air, and out of the temple came a loud voice from the throne, saying, ‘It is done!’ Then there came flashes of lightening, rumblings, peals of thunder and a severe earthquake. No earthquake like it has ever occurred since mankind has been on earth, so tremendous was the quake. The great city split into three parts, and the cities of the nations collapsed. God remembered Babylon the Great and gave her the cup filled with the wine of the fury of his wrath. Every island fled away and the mountains could not be found. From the sky huge hailstones, each weighing about a hundred pounds, fell on people. And they cursed God on account of the plagues of hail, because the plague was so terrible.” (Revelation 16: 12-21)
First of all, by comparing these earthquake depictions side by side, it can be seen that they are in fact the same earthquake and not three different earthquakes. This combined with the depictions presented by the Old Testament prophets it can be seen that this earthquake is a pivotal point in the prophetic word. In fact, it is the most important single event in human history as it depicts the arrival of God Himself!
Secondly, understanding how these events happen, it can be seen that the seven seals, trumpets, and bowls happen simultaneously and not independent from each other. This causes the concurrent timeline being taught to the church to not be correct. Understanding and seeing that these events will happen simultaneously brings a whole new perspective upon the end-time analysis.
Finally, the church is excited that they will be taken from this earth prior to any of these events happening. But we are still here and we can see the armies gathering and prophecy being fulfilled. They continue to reference 1 Thessalonians to justify their Rapture stance, but we are instructed to define Scripture with Scripture, and when doing so we can see where the reference to a thief tells us exactly when God’s Wrath occurs:
“But you, brothers and sisters, are not in darkness so that this day should surprise you like a thief. You are all children of light and children of the day. We do not belong to the night or to the darkness. So then, let us not be like others, who are asleep, but let us be awake and sober. For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk, get drunk at night. But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, putting on faith and love as a breastplate, and the hope of salvation as a helmet. For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ. He died for us so that, whether we are awake or asleep, we may live together with him. Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.” (1 Thessalonians 5: 4-11)
We are specifically told that God’s wrath will begin when the great earthquake happens, which means that God’s wrath occurs when He comes to earth to implement it! The Scripture depicts it without hesitation as the reference to a thief is given in both scenarios. This would mean that for those that endure until the end, they will be protected from God’s Wrath by the testament of Jesus Christ!
Jesus instructed his disciples that if they acknowledged him in the site of man, that he would acknowledge them in the site of His Father. This is when that event happens. God himself will come down to judge mankind and to enact His wrath and at that time Jesus will present those who he knows. We must all pray and hope that when that day comes, and it will come, that our Savior Jesus Christ will acknowledge us in the sight of His Father!
“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the ones who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’ (Matthew 7: 21-23)