Matthew 24, selected verses
4 And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you. 5 For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many…11 And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many. 12 And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold…24 For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect…37 But as the days of Noah were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be…42 Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come.
I write on a wide variety of topics from personal observation to science to obscure news items that don’t get mainstream coverage. All of this from a Christian blogger.
What’s the point? Salvation. As simple and as difficult as that.
It’s simple, because salvation is the free gift from God through Jesus.
It’s also difficult, because we live on earth, Satan’s backyard. He’s beaten. He knows it. But before the great final judgment day, he wants to wreck creation as much as possible. He particularly hates us and will do anything, absolutely anything to shake us out of our faith. Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour. 1 Peter 5:8
Dealing with the difficult part is what I’m about. It’s scriptural. Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Ephesians 6:10-18
It seems to me that organized religion, be you Lutheran like me, Roman Catholic like my friends, or some other Christian denomination, preaching and Bible studies stay with the nicer part of Christianity; salvation, heaven, love, mercy, etc. But Paul tells the Ephesians that this is bloody war! It isn’t about just love and mercy. It’s also about surviving in our faith during our journey on earth. The immediacy and reality seem to be missing, not urgent.
Matthew 24 is also known as The Olivet Discourse. Think of it as a mini-Revelation; it parallels the last book of the Bible. It contains warnings and signs to watch for. Jesus tells us in verse 42 to keep watch, because no one, not even Jesus, knows when His second coming will be. The Father alone knows.
For example, most of the chapter warns against being deceived by false prophets, claiming to be the Christ. Great signs shall be performed. Will those signs be magic or technology? Or some of each?
Magical/supernatural deceit? The Vatican is on record as saying that they are preparing for an alien race of superior, created beings that may well visit us soon and “enlighten” us on what God’s Word really means. IF that happens, my automatic assumption will be that they are demonic in nature. The Vatican even has what they call – I’m not making this up – the L.U.C.I.F.E.R. devise to help spot the alien UFOs coming. See the article and supporting data for yourself: https://jeffreyhking.wordpress.com/2016/06/20/its-a-real-fight/
Technology? It exists to project seemingly real, solid images which can even return a radar signal. There is also technology to influence people’s thoughts, make unseen voices audible. These could conceivably be used to project images of Jesus to counterfeit His coming and lead people astray. See my article If Possible:
Something less fantastic; simply understanding scripture better. This morning I read St. Paul’s account of his conversion on the road to Emmaus . He became an Apostle. To be an Apostle along with the other original 11, one had to have seen the resurrected Jesus and have been taught by Him. Paul saw Jesus on the road to Emmaus, but was he taught by Jesus Himself?
From Paul’s letter to the Galatians:
15 But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother’s womb, and called me by his grace, 16 To reveal his Son in me, that I might preach him among the heathen; immediately I conferred not with flesh and blood: 17 Neither went I up to Jerusalem to them which were apostles before me; but I went into Arabia, and returned again unto Damascus. 18 Then after three years I went up to Jerusalem to see Peter, and abode with him fifteen days.
Verses 17 and 18 are the key here. Apparently, Paul was three years “in training” before coming to Peter and beginning his apostleship. But here’s an added piece of information. It says he went to (Saudi) Arabia, then Damascus. Why is that possibly significant?
According to the book The Exodus Case, Mt. Sinai is located in Saudi Arabia. The ancient historian Josephus also places Sinai in Saudi Arabia. See my article at https://jeffreyhking.wordpress.com/2014/11/12/the-exodus-case-mt-sinai/
It makes sense, yes? Paul would have gone to the mountain of God for at least some of his education in the Gospel. Paul’s contemporaries would have understood, this, but we are trying to keep up 2000 years after it all happened! We need to try a bit harder to be sure we understand.
There are two things we need to do; study the Bible to know God’s Word and to watch and study the world around us. We are in enemy territory here on earth, and we need to know the lay of the land so as not to be caught unawares by the tricks and snares of the enemy.
And what IS the point?
Salvation. We are all broken by sin, regrets, and sorrow. We know we are empty and we need to be filled. Jesus and His Holy Spirit are the only filling that will satisfy. They are the only ones that can heal our souls and mend our minds.
If you have accepted Jesus, you need to watch and understand just how this world can deceive you. If you don’t watch and take care, it will!
If you are empty, if you hunger for fulfillment in your soul, in your life, pray to Jesus. Don’t worry about whether you know how to pray. Just call on His name. He knows it when He hears it. He’ll answer.
Psalm 51:17 The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.
Once you’ve accepted Jesus, read the Bible. All of it. Be aware of the world and don’t let Satan or his angels strip you of your newfound faith.
If we can all make it through, if we all resist the craftiness of the enemy and stay true to Jesus, there will be an eternity of rejoicing and comfort.
He will swallow up death in victory; and the Lord God will wipe away tears from off all faces; and the rebuke of his people shall he take away from off all the earth: for the Lord hath spoken it. Isaiah 25:8
THAT’S the point!