Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Revelation of People Missing the Rapture

Today I would like to share a revelation that was given to our sister in Christ, Zipporah Mushala on Monday of this week, which was posted on her sister Rachael's End Time Visitations blog.  She stated:

On Monday, January 27, 2015, in a supernatural dream,the Lord Jesus Christ showed me the danger of turning back.

I dreamed that my sister, Rachael told me that the Lord had told her that the tribulation would begin in a few days time.  Then I saw that the day was a Monday.  I saw a large number of Christians talking about how Jesus' coming has taken long. Many Christians were giving up on serving the Lord and turning back to the things of the world. A lady was saying she's tired of being a christian and that she thinks Jesus isn't coming back until 2017. I saw that many gave up on their walk with Christ and said, "Jesus won't be back until after many years."

I could literally see the years, but as I looked, those years that people were approximating were suddenly shortened by the Lord to just days! And on Wednesday of that very week, the Lord Jesus Christ suddenly came and a lot of people were left behind! They turned back to the world on Monday, thinking the Lord won't come for many years, but the Lord returned on Wedsnesday that very week!

I saw the people in so much regret. They were in deep regret. A lady was saying, "If I had just held on for a few more days, I would have gone with the Lord." And a certain brother was saying, "Less than a week! If I had just been faithful to the Lord for just less than a week, I could have gone with Him." It was a very sorry sight but it was too late.

Then in the dream,the Lord said to me, "The great tribulation is just minutes away."

Don't turn back and be left behind,Jesus Christ is coming back for you. He is coming back suddenly, like a thief in the night.Always be ready.  Please note that the timings ("minutes before the tribulation") in this revelation are spiritual, not natural.

Joel 2:28 And it shall come to pass afterward,that I will pour out My Spirit upon all flesh;and your sons and daughters shall prophesy,your old men shall dream dreams,your young men shall see visions.

Revelation 3:19 As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten:be zealous therefore and repent.

Revelation 16:15 Behold I come as a thief.Blessed is he that watcheth, and keepeth his garments, lest he walk naked, and they see his shame.

2Thessalonians 2:3 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come except there be a great falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition.

Revelation 22:12 Behold I come quickly and My reward is with me, to give to every man according as his work shall be.

Luke 12:39 And this know, that if the good man of the house had known what hour the thief would come, he would have watched, and not have suffered his house to be broken through.

End of revelation.
--

Author's note: You must take responsibility for your own actions. Nobody knows the day or the hour, and in no way am I date setting. This is only to provide you with information, so that you can make your own decisions, for which you will be accountable to God.

I also encourage you to read Rapture Revelation to Mushala Sisters , Rapture Revelation to Angelica Zambrano, Sequence of Signs Preceding the Coming of Christ, The Rise of Antichrists, Peace, Safety, and the Thief in the Night, The Timing of the Rapture, and Is Repentance Possible During the Great Tribulation?, as well as The Messiah Is Coming.  You may also visit our Signs of the Times Directory, and access my complete blog directory at Writing for the Master.

Do You Want to Know Him?
If you want to know Jesus personally, you can. It all begins when you repent and believe in Jesus.  Do you know what God's Word, the Bible says?

“Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of God, and saying, ‘The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.’” (Mar 1:14b-15).  He preached that we must repent and believe.

Please see my explanation of this in my post called "Do You Want to Know Jesus?"
_________________________________________________

Len Lacroix is the founder of Doulos Missions International.  He was based in Eastern Europe for four years, making disciples, as well as helping leaders to be more effective at making disciples who multiply, developing leaders who multiply, with the ultimate goal of planting churches that multiply. His ministry is now based in the United States with the same goal of helping fulfill the Great Commission. www.dmiworld.org.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Rapture Beliefs of Church Fathers

I recently posted an article about Margaret MacDonald's 1830 prophecy of the rapture, which some believe gave rise to the popular belief in a pre-tribulation rapture that began around that same time. While the Holy Spirit may have Restored Truth about the rapture through Margaret's prophetic utterance, the belief in a pre-tribulation rapture did not originate with her.  It goes all the way back to the apostles, whom the Holy Spirit inspired to write the Bible.  And it is evident in the writings of the Church Fathers that they also held to this same belief.  Here is what they believed.

Irenaeus
Irenaeus (130 A.D. – 202 AD) was a bishop of the church in Lyons, France, and a disciple of Polycarp, the first of the Apostle John’s disciples. It is thought that Irenaeus may have personally seen the Apostle John.  He is best known for his five-volume treatise, Against Heresies.  On the subject of the Rapture, in Against Heresies 5.29, he wrote:

“Those nations however, who did not of themselves raise up their eyes unto heaven, nor returned thanks to their Maker, nor wished to behold the light of truth, but who were like blind mice concealed in the depths of ignorance, the word justly reckons “as waste water from a sink, and as the turning-weight of a balance — in fact, as nothing;”(1) so far useful and serviceable to the just, as stubble conduces towards the growth of the wheat, and its straw, by means of combustion, serves for working gold. And therefore, when in the end the Church shall be suddenly caught up from this, it is said, “There shall be tribulation such as has not been since the beginning, neither shall be.”(2) For this is the last contest of the righteous, in which, when they overcome they are crowned with incorruption.”

Irenaeus believed the Church would suddenly be caught up after a time of tribulation that would be a last contest of the righteous on earth before their heavenly crowning.  This is consistent with the apostle Paul's teaching in his epistle to the Thessalonians, in which he wrote that the righteous would be "caught up" (Greek word "harpazo") to meet the Lord in the air (1 Thes 4:16-17). This is also consistent with what our Lord Jesus taught in Matthew 24, which I have written about in Sequence of Signs Preceding the Coming of Christ.

Cyprian
Cyprian (200 AD – 258 AD) – Cyprian was Bishop of the church in Carthage during severe persecution from the Roman Empire. After seven months of house arrest, he was beheaded for his Christ.  In his Treatise he described the end times Great Tribulation thus:

“We who see that terrible things have begun, and know that still more terrible things are imminent, may regard it as the greatest advantage to depart from it as quickly as possible. Do you not give God thanks, do you not congratulate yourself, that by an early departure you are taken away, and delivered from the shipwrecks and disasters that are imminent? Let us greet the day which assigns each of us to his own home, which snatches us hence, and sets us free from the snares of the world and restores us to paradise and the kingdom.”

Cyprian taught that more terrible things are imminent, but that by an early departure from that tribulation, the righteous would be taken away.  He taught that the righteous would depart quickly from that time of tribulation, on that day when we would be snatched up out of this world into paradise to heavenly mansions prepared by the Lord to each of us. This is consistent with the promise of our Lord Who said, “My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am." (Jn 14:2-3). Moreover, as with the teaching of Irenaeus, this teaching of Cyprian about a "snatching" is consistent with the language used by the apostle Paul in his epistle to the Thessalonians (1 Thes 4:16-17).

Ephraem The Syrian
Ephraim (306 AD – 373 AD) was the bishop of Nisibis. His book that still exists today was known as Apocalypse of Pseudo Ephraem, due to dispute over its authorship that arose later. It is also known as Sermon at the End of the World.  In it he made one compelling reference to the rapture in Section 2, where he wrote:

“We ought to understand thoroughly therefore, my brothers, what is imminent or overhanging. Already there have been hunger and plagues, violent movements of nations and signs, which have been predicted by the Lord, they have already been fulfilled (consummated), and there is not other which remains, except the advent of the wicked one in the completion of the Roman kingdom. Why therefore are we occupied with worldly business, and why is our mind held fixed on the lusts of the world or on the anxieties of the ages? Why therefore do we not reject every care of worldly business, and why is our mind held fixed on the lusts of the world or on the anxieties of the ages? Why therefore do we not reject every care of earthly actions and prepare ourselves for the meeting of the Lord Christ, so that he may draw us from the confusion, which overwhelms all the world? Believe you me, dearest brother, because the coming (advent) of the Lord is nigh, believe you me, because the end of the world is at hand, believe me, because it is the very last time.

Or do you not believe unless you see with your eyes? See to it that this sentence be not fulfilled among you of the prophet who declares: “Woe to those who desire to see the day of the Lord!” For all the saints and elect of God are gathered, prior to the tribulation that is to come, and are taken to the Lord lest they see the confusion that is to overwhelm the world because of our sins. And so, brothers most dear to me, it is the eleventh hour, and the end of the world comes to the harvest, and angels, armed and prepared, hold sickles in their hands, awaiting the empire of the Lord. And we think that the earth exists with blind infidelity, arriving at its downfall early. Commotions are brought forth, wars of diverse peoples and battles and incursions of the barbarians threaten, and our regions shall be desolated, and we neither become very much afraid of the report nor of the appearance, in order that we may at least do penance; because they hurl fear at us, and we do not wish to be changed, although we at least stand in need of penance for our actions!”

Ephraem referred to "the advent of the wicked one," who is the lawless one and the son of perdition, the man doomed to destruction, whom the apostle Paul said would be revealed before the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered to him (2 Thes 2:1-12). As the apostle Paul did, Ephraem taught that the advent of the wicked one would occur before the meeting of the Lord Christ.  Ephraem wrote that once that antichrist is revealed, then "all the saints and elect of God are gathered, prior to the tribulation that is to come, and are taken to the Lord."

Conclusion
In the second century, Irenaeus taught that "in the end the Church shall be suddenly caught up."  In the third century, Cyprian taught that by an early departure from the tribulation to overwhelm the earth, the righteous be "snatched" up out of this world into the kingdom of heaven. In the fourth century, Ephraem taught the "gathering" of all the saints and elect of God prior to the coming tribulation, and that we would be taken to the Lord.

If you think that Margaret MacDonald was one who originated the belief in the rapture, then please compare what these Church Fathers said with what our Lord Jesus said would be the Sequence of Signs Preceding the Coming of Christ.  There are definite signs that Scripture says will happen before the Lord returns, and we see them taking place all around us. 

In the words of Ephraem, "it is the eleventh hour," the end of the world is at hand," and "the coming of the Lord is nigh." "Why therefore are we occupied with worldly business, and why is our mind held fixed on the lusts of the world or on the anxieties of the ages? Why therefore do we not reject every care of worldly business, and why is our mind held fixed on the lusts of the world or on the anxieties of the ages? Why therefore do we not reject every care of earthly actions and prepare ourselves for the meeting of the Lord Christ?"

It’s time to wake up, repent, and live a life of daily repentance.  We need to produce the fruit of repentance, walking in love and in the light, and serving the Lord.  We need to watch and pray, always being ready for Jesus’ return.  Then that day will not overtake us like a thief in the night.

Attribution notice:  Most Scripture taken from The Holy Bible, New International Version® NIV®, unless otherwise noted.

Author's note: You must take responsibility for your own actions. Nobody knows the day or the hour, and in no way am I date setting. This is only to provide you with information, so that you can make your own decisions, for which you will be accountable to God.

I also encourage you to read Rapture Revelation to Mushala Sisters , Rapture Revelation to Angelica Zambrano, Sequence of Signs Preceding the Coming of Christ, The Rise of Antichrists, Rapture Revelation to Linda Ngaujah, Peace, Safety, and the Thief in the Night, The Timing of the Rapture, and Rapture Revelation to Zipora Bitrus, as well as The Messiah Is Coming.  You may also visit our Signs of the Times Directory, and access my complete blog directory at Writing for the Master.

Do You Want to Know Him?
If you want to know Jesus personally, you can. It all begins when you repent and believe in Jesus.  Do you know what God's Word, the Bible says?

“Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of God, and saying, ‘The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.’” (Mar 1:14b-15).  He preached that we must repent and believe.

Please see my explanation of this in my post called "Do You Want to Know Jesus?"
_________________________________________________

Len Lacroix is the founder of Doulos Missions International.  He was based in Eastern Europe for four years, making disciples, as well as helping leaders to be more effective at making disciples who multiply, developing leaders who multiply, with the ultimate goal of planting churches that multiply. His ministry is now based in the United States with the same goal of helping fulfill the Great Commission. www.dmiworld.org.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Rapture Revelation to Margaret MacDonald

I just recently learned about an outpouring of the Holy Spirit that occurred in Scotland in the early part of the nineteenth century.  During that event, a sister named Margaret MacDonald received a revelation of the rapture that I would like to share with you. I think it is very accurate and we are now living in the final moment before the rapture that she prophesied about.

According to a Wikipedia article: "Margaret MacDonald was born in 1815 in Port Glasgow, Scotland and died around 1840.[1] She lived with her two older brothers, James and George, both of whom ran a shipping business.[1] Beginning in 1826 and through 1829, a few preachers in Scotland emphasized that the world's problems could only be addressed through an outbreak of supernatural gifts from the Holy Spirit.[2] In response, Isabella and Mary Campbell of the parish of Rosneath manifested charismatic experiences such as speaking in tongues. Around 1830, miraculous healings were reported through James Campbell, first of his sister Margaret MacDonald and then of Mary Campbell (through James's letter to Mary).[3] Shortly thereafter James and George MacDonald manifested the speaking and interpretations of tongues, and soon others followed suit in prayer meetings. These charismatic experiences garnered major national attention. Many came to see and investigate these events. Some, such as Edward Irving and Henry Drummond, regarded these events as genuine displays from the Holy Spirit."

The article continues: "The first account of MacDonald's [1830] utterance was published in 1840 in Norton's Memoirs p. 171-176, and the second account in 1861 in The Restoration of Apostles and Prophets p. 15-18. The two accounts were conflated by MacPherson in his book The Incredible Cover-up p. 151-154. The bold text below is from the first account:"

"It was first the awful state of the land that was pressed upon me. I saw the blindness and infatuation of the people to be very great. I felt the cry of Liberty just to be the hiss of the serpent, to drown them in perdition. It was just 'no God.' I repeated the words, Now there is distress of nations, with perplexity, the seas and the waves roaring, men's hearts failing them for fear. Now look out for the sign of the Son of Man. Here I was made to stop and cry out, O it is not known what the sign of the Son of Man is; the people of God think they are waiting, but they know not what it is. I felt this needed to be revealed, and that there was great darkness and error about it; but suddenly what it was burst upon me with a glorious light. I saw it was just the Lord himself descending from Heaven with a shout, just the glorified man, even Jesus; but that all must, as Stephen was, be filled with the Holy Ghost, that they might look up, and see the brightness of the Father's glory. I saw the error to be, that men think that it will be something seen by the natural eye; but 'tis spiritual discernment that is needed, the eye of God in his people. Many passages were revealed, in a light in which I had not before seen them. I repeated, 'Now is the kingdom of Heaven like unto ten virgins, who went forth to meet the Bridegroom, five wise and five foolish; they that were foolish took their lamps, but took no oil with them; but they that were wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps.' 'But be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is; and be not drunk with wine wherein is excess, but be filled with the Spirit.' This was the oil the wise virgins took in their vessels - this is the light to be kept burning - the light of God - that we may discern that which cometh not with observation to the natural eye. Only those who have the light of God within them will see the sign of his appearance. No need to follow them who say, see here, or see there, for his day shall be as the lightning to those in whom the living Christ is. 'Tis Christ in us that will lift us up - he is the light - 'tis only those that are alive in him that will be caught up to meet him in the air. I saw that we must be in the Spirit, that we might see spiritual things. John was in the Spirit, when he saw a throne set in Heaven. But I saw that the glory of the ministration of the Spirit had not been known. I repeated frequently, but the spiritual temple must and shall be reared, and the fullness of Christ be poured into his body, and then shall we be caught up to meet him. Oh none will be counted worthy of this calling but his body, which is the church, and which must be a candlestick all of gold. I often said, Oh the glorious inbreaking of God which is now about to burst on this earth; Oh the glorious temple which is now about to be reared, the bride adorned for her husband; and Oh what a holy, holy bride she must he, to be prepared for such a glorious bridegroom. I said, Now shall the people of God have to do with realities - now shall the glorious mystery of God in our nature be known - now shall it be known what it is for man to be glorified. I felt that the revelation of Jesus Christ had yet to be opened up - it is not knowledge about God that it contains, but it is an entering into God - I saw that there was a glorious breaking in of God to be. I felt as Elijah, surrounded with chariots of fire. I saw as it were, the spiritual temple reared, and the Head Stone brought forth with shoutings of grace, grace, unto it. It was a glorious light above the brightness of the sun that shone round about me. I felt that those who were filled with the Spirit could see spiritual things, and feel walking in the midst of them, while those who had not the Spirit could see nothing - so that two shall be in one bed, the one taken and the other left, because the one has the light of God within while the other cannot see the Kingdom of Heaven. I saw the people of God in an awfully dangerous situation, surrounded by nets and entanglements, about to be tried, and many about to be deceived and fall. Now will THE WICKED be revealed, with all power and signs and lying wonders, so that if it were possible the very elect will be deceived - This is the fiery trial which is to try us. - It will be for the purging and purifying of the real members of the body of Jesus; but Oh it will be a fiery trial. Every soul will he shaken to the very centre. The enemy will try to shake in every thing we have believed - but the trial of real faith will be found to honour and praise and glory. Nothing but what is of God will stand. The stony-ground hearers will be made manifest - the love of many will wax cold.

I frequently said that night, and often since, now shall the awful sight of a false Christ be seen on this earth, and nothing but the living Christ in us can detect this awful attempt of the enemy to deceive - for it is with all deceivableness of unrighteousness he will work - he will have a counterpart for every part of God's truth, and an imitation for every work of the Spirit. The Spirit must and will be poured out on the church, that she may be purified and filled with God - and just in proportion as the Spirit of God works, so will he - when our Lord anoints men with power, so will he. This is particularly the nature of the trial, through which those are to pass who will be counted worthy to stand before the Son of man. There will he outward trial too, but 'tis principally temptation. It is brought on by the outpouring of the Spirit, and will just increase in proportion as the Spirit is poured out. The trial of the Church is from Antichrist. It is by being filled with the Spirit that we shall be kept. I frequently said, Oh be filled with the Spirit - have the light of God in you, that you may detect Satan - be full of eyes within -be clay in the hands of the potter -submit to be filled, filled with God. This will build the temple. It is not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit, saith the Lord. This will fit us to enter into the marriage supper of the Lamb. I saw it to be the will of God that all should be filled. But what hindered the real life of God from being received by his people, was their turning from Jesus, who is the way to the Father. They were not entering in by the door. For he is faithful who hath said, by me if any man enters in he shall find pasture. They were bypassing the cross, through which every drop of the Spirit of God flows to us. All power that comes not through the blood of Christ is not of God.

When I say, they are looking from the cross, I feel that there is much in it - they turn from the blood of the Lamb, by which we overcome, and in which our robes are washed and made white. There are low views of God's holiness, and a ceasing to condemn sin in the flesh, and a looking from him who humbled himself, and made himself of no reputation. Oh! it is needed, much needed at present, a leading back to the cross. I saw that night, and often since, that there will be an outpouring of the Spirit on the body, such as has not been, a baptism of fire, that all the dross may be put away. Oh there must and will be such an indwelling of the living God as has not been - the servants of God sealed in their foreheads - great conformity to Jesus - his holy holy image seen in his people - just the bride made comely by his comeliness put upon her. This is what we are at present made to pray much for, that speedily we may all be made ready to meet our Lord in the air - and it will be. Jesus wants his bride. His desire is toward us. He that shall come, will come, and will not tarry. Amen and Amen Even so come Lord Jesus."

End of revelation.
--

Conclusion
If you think that Margaret MacDonald  was prophesying that the Church is going to go through the entire Great Tribulation, then please compare what she said with what our Lord Jesus said would be the Sequence of Signs Preceding the Coming of Christ.  There are definite signs that Scripture says will happen before the Lord returns, and we see them taking place all around us. 

It’s time to wake up, repent, and live a life of daily repentance.  We need to produce the fruit of repentance, walking in love and in the light, and serving the Lord.  We need to watch and pray, always being ready for Jesus’ return.  Then that day will not overtake us like a thief in the night.

Author's note: You must take responsibility for your own actions. Nobody knows the day or the hour, and in no way am I date setting. This is only to provide you with information, so that you can make your own decisions, for which you will be accountable to God.

I also encourage you to read Revelation of People Missing the Rapture, Rapture Revelation to Mushala Sisters , Rapture Revelation to Angelica Zambrano, Sequence of Signs Preceding the Coming of Christ, The Rise of Antichrists, Rapture Revelation to Linda Ngaujah, Peace, Safety, and the Thief in the Night, The Timing of the Rapture, and Rapture Revelation to Zipora Bitrus.  You may also visit our Signs of the Times Directory, and access my complete blog directory at Writing for the Master.

Do You Want to Know Him?
If you want to know Jesus personally, you can. It all begins when you repent and believe in Jesus.  Do you know what God's Word, the Bible says?

“Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of God, and saying, ‘The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.’” (Mar 1:14b-15).  He preached that we must repent and believe.

Please see my explanation of this in my post called "Do You Want to Know Jesus?"
_________________________________________________

Len Lacroix is the founder of Doulos Missions International.  He was based in Eastern Europe for four years, making disciples, as well as helping leaders to be more effective at making disciples who multiply, developing leaders who multiply, with the ultimate goal of planting churches that multiply. His ministry is now based in the United States with the same goal of helping fulfill the Great Commission. www.dmiworld.org.

Friday, January 16, 2015

Sequence of Signs Preceding the Coming of Christ

The Temple Mount in Jerusalem
In order to know the signs that will happen before the return of our Lord Jesus Christ, we should consult the synoptic gospels, where it is recorded what He Himself prophesied would happen.  This is a study that shows what Jesus said would be the signs of the end times.

It's important to note that the context for these signs was that the Lord had predicted the destruction of the temple in Jerusalem.  In response to that, His disciples asked specifically, “When will this happen, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?”  The following signs given by the Lord were a direct answer to that question:

Deception
The first thing He warned about was deception.

Matthew 24 Mark 13 Luke 21
4 Jesus answered: “Watch out that no one deceives you. 5 Jesus said to them: “Watch out that no one deceives you. 8a He replied: “Watch out that you are not deceived.


False Christs
The next thing He warned about was False Christs, which is the next sign to occur in sequence.

Matthew 24 Mark 13 Luke 21
5 For many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am the Messiah,’ and will deceive many. 6 Many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am he,’ and will deceive many. 8b For many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am he,’ and, ‘The time is near.’ Do not follow them.

Also see my article called The Rise of Antichrists

Wars and Rumors of Wars, famines, pestilence, earthquakes, fearful events and great signs from heaven
The next sign the Lord told us would occur was a period when there would be wars and rumors of wars, famines, pestilence, earthquakes, fearful events and great signs from heaven, which is the next sign to occur in sequence.

Matthew 24 Mark 13 Luke 21
6 You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. 7 Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. 8 All these are the beginning of birth pains. 7 When you hear of wars and rumors of wars, do not be alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. 8 Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be earthquakes in various places, and famines. These are the beginning of birth pains. 9 When you hear of wars and uprisings, do not be frightened. These things must happen first, but the end will not come right away.”10 Then he said to them: “Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. 11 There will be great earthquakes, famines and pestilences in various places, and fearful events and great signs from heaven.


Persecution of witnesses, who will bear testimony for Jesus
The next sign the Lord told us would occur was a period when there would be Persecution of witnesses, who will bear testimony for Jesus, which is the next sign to occur in sequence.

Matthew 24 Mark 13 Luke 21
9 “Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of me. 9 “You must be on your guard. You will be handed over to the local councils and flogged in the synagogues. On account of me you will stand before governors and kings as witnesses to them. 10 And the gospel must first be preached to all nations. 11 Whenever you are arrested and brought to trial, do not worry beforehand about what to say. Just say whatever is given you at the time, for it is not you speaking, but the Holy Spirit. 12 “But before all this, they will seize you and persecute you. They will hand you over to synagogues and put you in prison, and you will be brought before kings and governors, and all on account of my name. 13 And so you will bear testimony to me.  14 But make up your mind not to worry beforehand how you will defend yourselves. 15 For I will give you words and wisdom that none of your adversaries will be able to resist or contradict.

Also see Persecuted or Popular?

Apostasy, love of most growing cold, betrayal, hatred, and false prophets; preaching the gospel of the kingdom
The next sign the Lord told us would occur was a period when there would be apostasy, or falling away from the faith, the love of most growing cold; there will be betrayal, hatred, and false prophets. Meanwhile, there will be the true witnesses preaching the gospel of the kingdom, which is the next sign to occur in sequence.

Matthew 24 Mark 13 Luke 21
10 At that time many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other, 11 and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people. 12 Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold, 13 but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved. 14 And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come. 12 “Brother will betray brother to death, and a father his child. Children will rebel against their parents and have them put to death. 13 Everyone will hate you because of me, but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved. 16 You will be betrayed even by parents, brothers and sisters, relatives and friends, and they will put some of you to death. 17 Everyone will hate you because of me. 18 But not a hair of your head will perish. 19 Stand firm, and you will win life.

Under these conditions (i.e., persecution, apostasy, cold love prevalent even among believers, betrayal, hatred, and false prophets) will this gospel of the kingdom be preached in the whole world just before the end comes -- not under peaceful conditions, in which the righteous are dominating the world or reigning on seven mountains!

Jerusalem surrounded by armies, nearness of desolation, abomination of desolation, time of punishment
The next sign the Lord told us would occur was a period when there would be Jerusalem surrounded by armies, the nearness of its desolation, the abomination of desolation in the temple, and the time of punishment on Israel, which is the next sign to occur in sequence.

Matthew 24 Mark 13 Luke 21
15 “So when you see standing in the holy place ‘the abomination that causes desolation,’[a] spoken of through the prophet Daniel—let the reader understand— 16 then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. 17 Let no one on the housetop go down to take anything out of the house. 18 Let no one in the field go back to get their cloak. 14 “When you see ‘the abomination that causes desolation’ standing where it does not belong—let the reader understand—then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. 15 Let no one on the housetop go down or enter the house to take anything out. 16 Let no one in the field go back to get their cloak. 20 “When you see Jerusalem being surrounded by armies, you will know that its desolation is near. 21 Then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains, let those in the city get out, and let those in the country not enter the city. 22 For this is the time of punishment in fulfillment of all that has been written.

Close up view

In Matthew and Mark, Jesus gave a close up view of what will occur in the holy place in Jerusalem.  It is the abomination in the temple that causes desolation to Jerusalem and the rest of Judea, which we now call Israel.  By combining the words of Jesus recorded in Matthew and Mark, we have him saying essentially, “When you see standing where it does not belong (i.e., in the holy place) ‘the abomination that causes desolation,’ spoken of through the prophet Daniel...” (Also see Daniel 9:27; 12:11).

As the apostle Paul said, "Let no one in any way deceive you, for it will not come unless the apostasy comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of destruction, who opposes and exalts himself above every so-called god or object of worship, so that he takes his seat in the temple of God, displaying himself as being God." (2Th 2:3-4). 

Wide-angle view
And in Luke Jesus gave the wider view of the bigger picture regionally when this sign occurs, which is armies surrounding Jerusalem.  Luke recorded Him saying, “When you see Jerusalem being surrounded by armies, you will know that its desolation is near.”  So this is about the desolation of Jerusalem (see Jeremiah 30:7), and the sign occurs in that city.  Therefore, the holy place where the abomination does not belong is in the temple there.  In Luke, we have Jesus giving the wider view of the bigger picture regionally when this sign occurs, which is armies surrounding Jerusalem. (Also compare Zechariah 12:3 and 14:2-5).

Dreadful time of Great Tribulation
The next sign the Lord told us would occur is the onset of a dreadful time of distress, known as the Great Tribulation, which is the next sign to occur in sequence.

Matthew 24 Mark 13 Luke 21
19 How dreadful it will be in those days for pregnant women and nursing mothers! 20 Pray that your flight will not take place in winter or on the Sabbath. 21 For then there will be great distress, unequaled from the beginning of the world until now—and never to be equaled again. 17 How dreadful it will be in those days for pregnant women and nursing mothers! 18 Pray that this will not take place in winter, 19 because those will be days of distress unequaled from the beginning, when God created the world, until now—and never to be equaled again. 23 How dreadful it will be in those days for pregnant women and nursing mothers! There will be great distress in the land and wrath against this people. 24 They will fall by the sword and will be taken as prisoners to all the nations. Jerusalem will be trampled on by the Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled.

Jesus was speaking to His disciples and took care to have us pray that our flight would not take place on the Sabbath.  This applies to the Jews and Christians living in Jerusalem at this time.  When they see the abomination that causes desolation, standing in the holy place, and Jerusalem surrounded by armies, they will need to flee to the mountains immediately.  There will be no time to spare, not even to go inside the house to grab their coat to keep warm at night in the mountains. There may only be a matter of minutes to escape Jerusalem before it is destroyed, and it will probably not be more than an hour, so every minute will count!

I want to call attention to the fact that Jesus cared about the Sabbath.  He did not want them fleeing on that day, since their flight would deny them the opportunity to rest and worship.  But also in Jerusalem on the Sabbath, all stores and shops are closed, and all public transportation and taxis are shut down. So the only way to flee the city may be on foot or bicycle. 

He made a special note of how dreadful it would be for pregnant women and nursing mothers. If a woman is pregnant, she has special needs and if she is in the advanced stages of her pregnancy she may be impeded from walking fast or running under duress. She may need frequent stops, which would slow down her escape.  If a woman is nursing one or more babies, they will be crying loudly and their needs will need to be met, including nursing and diaper changes.  Those will add further complication to the flight from Jerusalem, since they are difficult to do while on the run, especially if the babies clothes become wet or soiled and there are not clean dry clothes or diapers on hand to change them into. And if this occurs in winter, it would present a particularly dreadful hardship for anyone fleeing to the mountains, due to the cold temperatures, but especially to these mothers Jesus spoke of.

He spoke to His disciples about the onset of the Great Tribulation as something that would occur before His coming. The sign that occurs right before this onset is the abomination that causes the desolation in Jerusalem, and the armies surrounding Jerusalem that will bring that desolation to her.  Those combined events will be the trigger that set off the avalanche of disastrous events to occur next, including this flight from Jerusalem and the onset of the Great Tribulation -- "great distress, unequaled from the beginning of the world until now—and never to be equaled again."  This will be the beginning of the period known as Jacob's Trouble (Jeremiah 30:7), which Jesus called the time of punishment (Lk 21:22), when God brings punishment upon the Jewish people, and eventually restores them according to the prophecy of Jeremiah in his thirtieth chapter.

False messiahs and false prophets performing great signs and wonders to deceive
The next sign the Lord told us would occur was a period when there would be false messiahs and false prophets performing great signs and wonders to deceive, which is the next sign to occur in sequence.

Matthew 24 Mark 13 Luke 21
22 “If those days had not been cut short, no one would survive, but for the sake of the elect those days will be shortened. 23 At that time if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Messiah!’ or, ‘There he is!’ do not believe it. 24 For false messiahs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect. 25 See, I have told you ahead of time.26 “So if anyone tells you, ‘There he is, out in the wilderness,’ do not go out; or, ‘Here he is, in the inner rooms,’ do not believe it. 27 For as lightning that comes from the east is visible even in the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. 28 Wherever there is a carcass, there the vultures will gather. 20 “If the Lord had not cut short those days, no one would survive. But for the sake of the elect, whom he has chosen, he has shortened them. 21 At that time if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Messiah!’ or, ‘Look, there he is!’ do not believe it. 22 For false messiahs and false prophets will appear and perform signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect. 23 So be on your guard; I have told you everything ahead of time. [No record of this sign in Luke's gospel]

When the people are saying ‘Look, here is the Messiah!’ or, ‘There he is!’ and ‘Here he is, in the inner rooms,’ could it be a reference to ‘the abomination that causes desolation, standing in the holy place? Perhaps, but not necessarily.  It certainly speaks of false messiahs and false prophets performing great signs and wonders to deceive many.  Many people will be drawn to these people like a spectacle.  Crowds of people, who love to feed on that which is sickly or dead, will gather around the bodies of these false messiahs and false prophets. For wherever there is a carcass, there the vultures will gather.

Some of these false christs and false prophets will literally appear or materialize out of thin air in various locations, as one of the wonders they perform to deceive many. There will be these strange people from another place that will appear on earth very soon.  Some of them could even come down in a UFO. But in reality, they are demons that will come to deceive people. There will probably be videos of this online and emails with the links to those videos of such men appearing. This will be a temptation even for believers, which we will need to resist.

Signs in the sun, moon and stars, nations in anguish, tsunamis, terror, heavenly bodies shaken
The next sign the Lord told us would occur was a period when there would be signs in the sun, moon and stars, nations in anguish, tsunamis, terror, and heavenly bodies shaken, which is the next series of signs to occur in sequence.

Matthew 24 Mark 13 Luke 21
29 “Immediately after the distress of those days “‘the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from the sky, and the heavenly bodies will be shaken.’ 24 “But in those days, following that distress, “‘the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light;25 the stars will fall from the sky, and the heavenly bodies will be shaken.’ 25 “There will be signs in the sun, moon and stars. On the earth, nations will be in anguish and perplexity at the roaring and tossing of the sea. 26 People will faint from terror, apprehensive of what is coming on the world, for the heavenly bodies will be shaken.

Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and glory
The next event the Lord told us would occur is the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and glory.

Matthew 24 Mark 13 Luke 21
30 “Then will appear the sign of the Son of Man in heaven. And then all the peoples of the earth[c] will mourn when they see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven, with power and great glory.[d] 31 And he will send his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of the heavens to the other. 26 “At that time people will see the Son of Man coming in clouds with great power and glory. 27 And he will send his angels and gather his elect from the four winds, from the ends of the earth to the ends of the heavens. 27 At that time they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. 28 When these things begin to take place, stand up and lift up your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.”

Everyone on earth will see this event, even those who are not ready for it.  Those who are not ready will mourn (Zech 12:10).  But the angels will gather the elect from across the earth and from across the heavens for those who are in flight, and they will be gathered together in the sky to meet the Lord.

The apostle Paul wrote: "For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so God will bring with Him those who have fallen asleep in Jesus. For this we say to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord, will not precede those who have fallen asleep. For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we shall always be with the Lord. Therefore comfort one another with these words." (1Th 4:14-18)

Also see my article, The Son of Man

One Generation to See it All
Our Lord said that the generation which sees these things begin will not pass away until they have all been completed.  He said, "Truly I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all these things take place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will not pass away." (Mat 24:34-35).  People, we are that generation which the Lord spoke of.

Putting it All Together
Our Lord Jesus compared these events to birth pains of a woman in labor.  Labor pains begin at a low intensity and built to a very high intensity to the point where they become unbearable, until finally the woman gives birth to the man child.  The labor pains begin at regular intervals that are spaced far apart in frequency, but as time goes on the tempo builds and becomes faster, as the pains occur more frequently intervals.

That is how we can expect these events to occur.  At first they will be spaced far apart at regular intervals, but then they will happen more and more frequently, until eventually they are happening so close together that there is no time to catch your breath between a particular sign and the one that follows it.  And when a particular sign occurs, it continues until the end.

The signs Jesus predicted were: deception, false christs, wars and rumors of wars, famines, pestilence, earthquakes, fearful events and great signs from heaven, persecution of witnesses, who will bear testimony for Jesus, apostasy, love of most growing cold, betrayal, hatred, and false prophets, the righteous preaching the gospel of the kingdom, Jerusalem surrounded by armies, nearness of desolation, the abomination that causes desolation, flight from Jerusalem, destruction of Jerusalem, the time of punishment, the dreadful time of distress,  the onset of the Great Tribulation, false messiahs and false prophets performing great signs and wonders to deceive, signs in the sun, moon and stars, nations in anguish, tsunamis, terror, heavenly bodies shaken.  Only after all of these signs will Son of Man be seen coming in a cloud with power and glory with all His holy angels with Him to gather the elect to Himself.  That is when the rapture will occur. As Jesus said, "be on your guard; I have told you everything ahead of time."

With regard to the saints going through the entire Great Tribulation, I do not believe that will happen, unless you are a saint who is not ready for the rapture.  I believe that the saints will see the onset of the Great Tribulation, in which the abomination that causes desolation occurs and Jerusalem is destroyed. We will see the days of darkness when the sun and moon do not give their light, and other things happening during that period as I have already mentioned.  However, let us not forget that Jesus said, if those days had not been cut short, no one would survive. But for the sake of the elect those days will be shortened.

The final events that Jesus said would be signs to occur before his coming will happen at greater and greater frequency, so that the ones that occur after the abomination of desolation may happen with a very short time. This would mean that the saints only go through a very brief period of the Great Tribulation. So for the sake of the elect, whose robes are pure white and spotless, without any wrinkle, the Lord will shorten those days by coming to gather them to Himself in the rapture.  Those who are not ready will be left behind to go through the 3.5 year Great Tribulation. And believe me, you don't want to go through that!

That's why we need to pray to escape all these things.  "But keep on the alert at all times, praying that you may have strength to escape all these things that are about to take place, and to stand before the Son of Man." (Luk 21:36).  It may not be possible to escape the part leading up to the Great Tribulation, unless someone is put to death for their faith in Christ, but once the Great Tribulation begins, I believe there will be an escape for the righteous, by way of the rapture.

These are the definite signs that Scripture says will happen before the Lord returns, and we see them taking place all around us.  It’s time to wake up, repent, and live a life of daily repentance.  We need to produce the fruit of repentance, walking in love and in the light, and serving the Lord.  We need to watch and pray, always being ready for Jesus’ return.  Then that day will not overtake us like a thief in the night.  The one who stands firm to the end will be saved. Stand firm, and you will win life.

Attribution notice: Most Scripture quotations taken from the NASB. Temple Mount photo from Wikipedia in the public domain.

Author's note: You must take responsibility for your own actions. Nobody knows the day or the hour, and in no way am I date setting. This is only to provide you with information, so that you can make your own decisions, for which you will be accountable to God.

If you enjoyed this post, please see the sequel article called Synching Up the Seven Seals with the Gospels.  You may also like the following articles in this blog as well as other posts in this blog available through the Signs of the Times Directory.

The 311 Moment
Are you Rapture Ready?
The Day of Our Lord’s Wedding is at Hand
Rapture Revelation to Rachael Mushala
Rapture Revelation to Ayodelle Sawyerr
Rapture Revelation to Angelica Zambrano
The Timing of the Rapture
The Son of Man  

You may access my complete blog directory at Writing for the Master.

Do You Want to Know Him?
If you want to know Jesus personally, you can. It all begins when you repent and believe in Jesus.  Do you know what God's Word, the Bible says?

“Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of God, and saying, ‘The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.’” (Mar 1:14b-15).  He preached that we must repent and believe.

Please see my explanation of this in my post called "Do You Want to Know Jesus?"
_________________________________________________

Len Lacroix is the founder of Doulos Missions International.  He was based in Eastern Europe for four years, making disciples, as well as helping leaders to be more effective at making disciples who multiply, developing leaders who multiply, with the ultimate goal of planting churches that multiply. His ministry is now based in the United States with the same goal of helping fulfill the Great Commission. www.dmiworld.org.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

The Rise of Antichrists

José Luis de Jesús Miranda
One sign of the times is the rise of antichrists.  From this we know it is the last hour.

Many people, even nonbelievers are familiar with the term antichrist.  But various people may have different ideas of what that means.  According to Matthew Henry, an English Puritan pastor who lived in the late seventeenth century and wrote a commentary on the Bible that is still popular today: “It is a mysterious portion of providence that antichrists should be permitted; but, when they have come, it is good and safe that the disciples should be informed of them; ministers should be watchmen to the house of Israel.” So what does the word of God say?  How does the Bible define an antichrist, and is there only one?  Let’s see.

Basic Characteristics of Antichrist
The most obvious place to begin is with the epistles of the apostle John, who spoke about antichrists.

Many antichrists had already appeared during the first century, yet the antichrist is coming: "Children, it is the last hour; and just as you heard that antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have appeared; from this we know that it is the last hour."  (1Jo 2:18)

The antichrist is a liar who denies that Jesus is the Christ: "Who is the liar but the one who denies that Jesus is the Christ? This is the antichrist, the one who denies the Father and the Son."  (1Jo 2:22)

Every spirit that does not confess Jesus is the spirit of the antichrist: "And every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God; this is the spirit of the antichrist, of which you have heard that it is coming, and now it is already in the world."  (1Jo 4:3)

Those who do not acknowledge that Jesus Christ came in the flesh are antichrists: "For many deceivers have gone out into the world, those who do not acknowledge Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh. This is the deceiver and the antichrist."  (2Jo 1:7)

So from John’s epistles, we learn the following:
·    Many antichrists have already appeared, yet the antichrist is coming
·    The antichrist is a liar who denies that Jesus is the Christ
·    Every spirit that does not confess Jesus is the spirit of the antichrist
·    Those who do not acknowledge that Jesus Christ came in the flesh are antichrists

Composite Sketch of Antichrist
For further definition of the characteristics of an antichrist, you can read Daniel and Revelation, as well as Paul’s second epistle to the Thessalonians.  In those passages, we find the following composite description of the final antichrist that John referred to, who will be a global ruler:

·    He opposes and exalts himself above every so-called god or object of worship,
·    He will exalt and magnify himself above every god
·    He will oppose the Prince of Princes, Jesus Christ.
·    He takes his seat in the temple of God, displaying himself as being God.
·    He will be a boastful narcissist who behaves with overweening pride and will claim equality with Jesus Christ, the Commander of the host
·    He will speak monstrous things against the God of gods
·    He will be insultingly contemptuous in his speech and conduct
·    His coming will happen according to satanic activity
·    He will perform false signs and wonders
·    He will have no regard for truth, and will fling it to the ground as worthless rubbish.  This means he will say whatever he wants in order to benefit himself in any given situation and he will easily deceive people. Deceit will succeed under his leadership, so people in mass will fall for his lies.
·    He will deceive the masses
·    He will wield power over people through deception
·    He will use smooth words, eloquence, and flattery
·    He will speak like a dragon
·    He will exercise global authority 
·    He will have anyone who refuses to worship the image executed.
·    Demonic power will be given to him from Satan
·    Since he operates in the presence of the first beast, we know he will rule for 3.5 yrs concurrently with the first beast, which represents the final worldly empire/kingdom and its ruler.
·    He will turn people to godlessness
·    He will encourage people to act wickedly toward God’s covenant people
·    He will use his power to destroy mighty men and God’s holy people
·    He will do as he pleases
·    He will do whatever he wants and get away with it.
·    He will prosper in his endeavors.
·    He will prosper until the indignation (wrath of God) is finished
·    His beginnings will be insignificant
·    He will grow to be exceedingly great in power
·    While his power will be mighty, it will not be his own power, but from another source than himself
·    He will be overbearing
·    He will exert influence over Israel/Palestine (the Beautiful Land)
·    He will exert influence in the East and have ambitions there.
·    He may even have influence among the Saudi’s and Egypt
·    He will eventually commit a transgression concerning the temple sacrifices.  This will occur on a regular basis, causing horror and causing the holy place to be trampled. 
·    These things will occur throughout this period: A change will be made to the regular sacrifice, a transgression that causes horror will occur, so as to allow both the holy place (the sanctuary) and the host (God’s people) to be trampled. 
·    The transgression that causes horror is when he will take his seat in the temple of God, displaying himself as being God. 
·    In the end, he will be taken down, but not by a human being.

So the Lord ensured that those who read His Word would have an excellent description of the final antichrist ruler, so God’s people could easily identify him, and so that His people would not be deceived.  We know what his character is like and when he is revealed publicly, it will be clear to us.  However, since we know there are many antichrists, one does not need to exhibit all of these characteristics found in Scripture in order to be an antichrist.

As for the rise of the final antichrist dictator, it is my opinion that he will be recognized by the elect, and then the rapture will occur soon afterward, according to 2 Thessalonians 2.  I believe in a pre-Tribulation rapture, as I have explained in my articles, The Timing of the Rapture and Sequence of Signs Preceding the Coming of Christ.

Other Ways to Identify an Antichrist
John in his epistles gave some examples of antichrist traits, but he did not say those are the only ways one can be an antichrist. There are other ways we can identify an antichrist as well.

Our Lord spoke of these many antichrists that mislead many when he said, "For many will come in My name, saying, 'I am the Christ,' and will mislead many.” (Mat 24:5).  He also said, "For false Christs and false prophets will arise and will show great signs and wonders, so as to mislead, if possible, even the elect.” (Mat 24:24).  Anyone who calls evil good and good evil or who calls darkness light and light darkness is antichrist. It doesn’t matter if these people perform great signs and wonders or have amazing visions and revelations.  As we saw in the expanded list of antichrist characteristics above, demonic power can be given to them from satan to perform false signs and wonders, so don’t be deceived.  Such antichrists deceive the masses, wield power over people through deception, and thus they speak like a dragon.  They use smooth words, eloquence, and flattery. They have no regard for truth, and fling it to the ground as worthless rubbish.

As we saw in that expanded list of characteristics I developed, an antichrist is also anyone who turns people to godlessness.  This may even be a Christian, who tells their brother or sister “It is not a sin,” when it is a sin. As long as the Christian also says “It is not a sin” when it is sin, they make themselves defenders of the devil.   And the devil will make sure he finds a way to prove it is not sin. Matthew Henry in his commentary on the temptation of Christ says, “For those are our worst enemies, that entice us to sin, and are satan's agents, are doing his work, and carrying on his designs.”  

For example, the Lord told brother Olugbenga Oladejo with respect to His Warning for Married Christian Couples that any pastor who says masturbation is not a sin is a false prophet and an antichrist, and is not working for the Lord.  I believe the same applies to any pastor who claims that homosexuality is not a sin, such as pope Francis.  He is a false prophet and an antichrist (see Pope Frances Supports Homosexuality).

As it is written in the epistle of James: "You adulteresses, do you not know that friendship with the world is hostility toward God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God." (Jas 4:4).  Any minister who becomes a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.

It’s also written in the prophet Isaiah: “Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; Who substitute darkness for light and light for darkness; Who substitute bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter!” (Isa 5:20)

And the apostle Peter warned us of false teachers when he wrote: "But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will also be false teachers among you, who will secretly introduce destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing swift destruction upon themselves. Many will follow their sensuality, and because of them the way of the truth will be maligned; and in their greed they will exploit you with false words; their judgment from long ago is not idle, and their destruction is not asleep...They count it a pleasure to revel in the daytime. They are stains and blemishes, reveling in their deceptions, as they carouse with you, having eyes full of adultery that never cease from sin, enticing unstable souls, having a heart trained in greed, accursed children; forsaking the right way, they have gone astray, having followed the way of Balaam, the son of Beor, who loved the wages of unrighteousness;" (2Pe 2:1-3,13b-15)

And in his epistle, Jude wrote: "Woe to them! For they have gone the way of Cain, and for pay they have rushed headlong into the error of Balaam, and perished in the rebellion of Korah. These are the men who are hidden reefs in your love feasts when they feast with you without fear, caring for themselves; clouds without water, carried along by winds; autumn trees without fruit, doubly dead, uprooted; wild waves of the sea, casting up their own shame like foam; wandering stars, for whom the black darkness has been reserved forever." (Jud 1:11-13)

The International Conference of the Kingdom of Darkness
As I wrote in my article about James Agboola's Revelation of Heaven and Hell, the Lord revealed to him some things about the kingdom of darkness.

James was shown that the devil actually holds conferences with his demons, as well as false prophets, who are so called “pastors” that are getting powers from the kingdom of darkness. He also has different departments in his kingdom, including the musical department that he has sent to go to the world.  The devil is furious.  He is seriously angry and annoyed, because he knows that his time is so short. He has no time, so he is putting great pressure on his demons to capture souls to hell.  They have no time to rest. He has ordered his demons to step up their efforts. He has ordered them to follow the Christians bumper to bumper.  He has determined to increase their power.

As a result, the demons are possessing the Church, taking over the youth activities, giving them new systems, new fashions, and making them to go out of the way of God.  They have possessed the gospel musicians of the earth, so that their music is no longer having meaning in the spiritual realms. They have possessed their gospel music so that it becomes worldly music. The people now think they are singing gospel music, but it is worldly. The demons are giving them some tunes, some pieces, some dancing steps which are not of God, which are of the demons. These will be sung inside the congregations. At the end of the day this music is taking them out of the will of God.

The devil has charged the so-called pastors. He gave them power to work wonders and miracles. He gave them various power in various ways with conditions. They can preach anything they like in their church. They can do any program they like in their church, but they must not talk about salvation. They must not talk about heaven. They must not say anything about the rapture. They can do altar calls, call people forward, pray for them, bless them, and let them go. But they cannot go into details about the Kingdom of God or the salvation of their souls.

There is actually something known as the drum of covenants with fire under it.  It keeps burning twenty-four hours. Devils are constantly bringing blood from the four corners of the earth into that drum that is on the fire. Whatsoever blood enters into that drum is from the blood of covenants. And from that drum the demons fetch blood and give to manufacturers, those who manufacturer jewelry, perfumes, and other worldly things that people put on their bodies.  The oil they are spraying on their body -- the oil they are spraying as perfumes -- it’s taking away the glory of God in them. And the spirit of lust begins to dominate them. They will not have time for God again.  They won’t have time to read the Bible.

The demons have possessed all these material things that people love – all these worldly things. Therefore, it has come to the time in this world that even if you buy ordinary Vaseline, you need to sanctify it. You don’t know what, where, or who manufactured it. Maybe it’s a demon.  Sanctify everything you get from the marketplace.

The devil does not believe that there is anybody he cannot catch. He still believes that there is nobody he will not get.  He is providing interesting and very good programs on the TV twenty-four hours, so that these will occupy people’s time, and so that they’ll have no time to read the Bible, they’ll have no time to go to church activities.

The devil knows that when God destroyed the earth with a flood, it pained Him to his heart, because He had destroyed His own handiwork. Therefore, the devil intends to pack at least, not less than ninety-five percent of God’s people to hell, with the end goal of causing pain in God’s heart. If he cannot get all, if he can succeed to pack ninety-five percent of God’s creation to hell, that it is still going to pain God in His heart, that God will weep. And his happiness is to see tears in the face of God. If the demons even think there is the slightest chance they might lose someone, they have orders to cut them off and kill them, rather than wait until they get beyond the gate.

So Christians, we must be careful. We must watch the type of church we go to, the type of pastor or minister of God we follow. Ones they are not preaching the true Word of God, once any pastor is not preaching repentance, is not preaching the kingdom of God, is not preaching salvation, the salvation of your soul, you must watch.  Christians, we have to be extra careful. We have to mind what we wear, what we use. Whatever we buy in the market at this time, we pray over it even if it is clothes, we sanctify it and we cover it in the Blood of Jesus. And the protections of God will continue to be upon us in Jesus’ Name. (please see the full testimony in his own words at James Agboola's Revelation of Heaven and Hell).

Actual Example of an Antichrist
There have been and still are too many antichrists to possibly list them all here.  But one example is José Luis de Jesús Miranda (April 22, 1946 - August 8, 2013), pictured above.  According to Wikipedia, Miranda "was the leader of the Creciendo en Gracia [Growing in Grace] sect, based in Miami, Florida. He claimed to be both the returned phase of Jesus Christ and the Antichrist...He claimed to have two million followers in 30 countries by 2008."

Miranda gained international notoriety by declaring himself to be Jesus Christ in 2004, then later claiming to be the Antichrist, after which he tattooed his arm with the symbol ''666'' (see his interviews with CNN and CBS). During a packed worship service at the church, Miranda removed his coat and revealed the tattoo on his forearm. He taught that there was no such thing as sin, that prayer is a waste of time, and the elect are free to do whatever they want, because there is no condemnation. He taught that there is no hell and no more devil, because the devil has been destroyed. He lived a very sinful life, spent money extravagantly and used church funds to maintain his lifestyle, paying personal expenses with donations to his tax-exempt church. His slogan was "Salvo siempre salvo," or "Saved always saved," which he abbreviated by the letters "SSS" (i.e., "once saved always saved," or "eternal security"). 

The Wikipedia article goes on to say, "Followers showed their support by getting '666' tattoos on their bodies. One of Miranda's followers in Havana, Cuba tattooed the symbol on her three year old son. A YouTube video of the mother holding the child as he was tattooed was widely circulated in January 2013. '666', [Miranda] said, is not a sign of the Devil (he preaches that the Devil was destroyed) but instead is the number of the Antichrist and that the number is 'a number of wisdom and it displays who is really following the truthful words of Jesus Christ.'"  In the photo above from Wikipedia that I've used in this article, Miranda is shown with the number 666 on his vest, which he falsely taught is not necessarily an evil symbol, but rather a Christian one (see The Mark of the Beast - 666).  He ultimately died of cirrhosis of the liver on August 8, 2013.

In summary, he was the leader of "Growing in Grace," where grace was assumed as a license to sin.  He taught, "once saved always saved" and led many souls to hell. Now that he has died, he has surely discovered for himself that the fiery torment of hell he once denied is indeed real. 

Let them Alone
If you have come to realize that the spiritual leaders you are following are actually antichrists, then you should stop following them. As Jesus said of the Pharisees, "Let them alone; they are blind guides of the blind. And if a blind man guides a blind man, both will fall into a pit." (Mat 15:14). The Greek for for "let them alone" is "aphiēmi," meaning "forsake, lay aside, leave, let alone, let be, let go, put away." The Lord instructed his disciples to leave the Pharisees alone, since they were blind guides.

The application of this for us today is clear. If your spiritual leaders are antichrists, then they are blind guides of the blind. In the end, they will fall into the pit of hell, and so will all who follow them. Therefore you need to let them alone, forsake them, leave them, escape from them, and put them away.

Putting it All Together
In conclusion, the three examples of antichrist characteristics that John gave in his epistles were: 1) The one who denies that Jesus is the Christ, who actually denies both the Father and the Son. 2) The one who does not confess Jesus, and 3) Those who do not acknowledge Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh.

And in addition to the three examples that the apostle John gave, we know that any there are many other ways in Scripture to identify an antichrist.  One of them is any pastor who says masturbation is not a sin.  Do not listen to those pastors.  Like José Luis de Jesús Miranda, they are false prophets and antichrists, and there presence is a sign of the times.  By this we know it is the last hour.

Beware of any pastor who is not preaching the true Word of God, who is not preaching repentance, who is not preaching the kingdom of God, is not preaching salvation, who does not talk about heaven or the rapture. Be careful, brethren! Watch the type of church you go to, the type of pastor or minister you listen to. Avoid the antichrists, and God will help us in Jesus’ Name.

Attribution notice: Most Scripture quotations taken from the NASB. Photograph of Jose Luis de Jesus Miranda, taken inside of the building of TV Azteca. Wikimedia Commons photo from Anonymous User. 

Author's note:  You must take responsibility for your own actions. Nobody knows the day or the hour, and in no way am I date setting. This is only to provide you with information, so that you can make your own decisions, for which you will be accountable to God.

I recommend reading James Agboola Revelation of Heaven and Hell, Warning for Married Christian Couples, Godly Attire and Adornment -- Seven Divine Revelations, Eternal Security, and Carrying Your Cross or Cross Dressing? I also encourage you to read Rapture Revelation to Rachael Mushala, Pope Frances Supports Homosexuality, The 311 Moment, Exposing Heresy, Exposing the JMS Cult, The Mark of the Beast - 666, The Day of Our Lord’s Wedding is at Hand,  Rapture Revelation to Ayodelle Sawyerr, and Rapture Revelation to Angelica Zambrano. You may also visit our Signs of the Times Directory. You may access my complete blog directory at Writing for the Master.

Do You Want to Know Him?
If you want to know Jesus personally, you can. It all begins when you repent and believe in Jesus.  Do you know what God's Word, the Bible says?

“Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of God, and saying, ‘The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.’” (Mar 1:14b-15).  He preached that we must repent and believe.

Please see my explanation of this in my post called "Do You Want to Know Jesus?"
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Len Lacroix is the founder of Doulos Missions International.  He was based in Eastern Europe for four years, making disciples, as well as helping leaders to be more effective at making disciples who multiply, developing leaders who multiply, with the ultimate goal of planting churches that multiply. His ministry is now based in the United States with the same goal of helping fulfill the Great Commission. www.dmiworld.org.