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Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. 2 Timothy 2:15

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Are We Really Living in the End Times?

“Consider The Signs”

Matthew 24:3 – 14; 31

Now, let’s take a look at some of the Signs of the End that Jesus Himself warned us to be on the look out for......signs that He said would come to pass just before His Second Coming and the "end of the world" as we now know it:

The foremost passage in the entire bible to determine the signs or hints that the Second Coming of Christ is imminent can be found in Matthew chapter 24 from the very words of Jesus Himself. In vs. 3 it says, “And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?"

Vs. 5 gives us His first tip-off “For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many.” As the time of Christ’s return draws near there will be more and more individuals like the Rev. Sun Myung Moon of the Unification Church who actually claim to be Jesus Christ.

One Christian leader claims that since 1900, over 1,100 people have claimed to be Christ. I’m not sure where he came up with the number 1,100. But there have been scores of people this century who claimed to be the Messiah including Jim Jones of the People’s Temple, Moses Guibbory, David Koresh of the Branch Dividians, and the Christ Mytraya,

In the Jewish World Review, just a few years ago, Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson, the late leader of the Lubavitch movement based in New York City was believed by his followers to be the Messiah. The Lubavitch movement denies this. But a recent visit to the movement’s Crown Heights headquarters revealed a large banner in its main sanctuary proclaiming Rabbi Schneerson the Anointed One (viz. the Messiah) and children attending the movement’s educational institutions are encouraged to consider their late beloved leader the Messiah who will rise from the dead.

On Dec. 24, 1997 - God’s Salvation Church, a cult similar to the Heaven’s Gate group located in Garland Texas claimed that one of the children in the group is a reincarnation of Jesus Christ. They believed that God will arrive in a spaceship on March 31, 1998.

The majority of evangelical Christians believe that the presence of these false Christs (of which I have mentioned only a few) will culminate in the appearance of one final Anti-Christ who is mentioned in 1 John 2:18. With breathtaking advances in mass media, this time more than any other time in history false Christs can disseminate their messages on a world-wide scale. But very soon a false Christ will be widely accepted on a world-wide scale.

In vs. 11 Jesus added “And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many. 12And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.” I have personally witnessed people who hold to Christian doctrine, who believe that Jesus is the only way to heaven, that the bible is God’s inspired and inerrant Word, yet do not have the love of God in their hearts. In John 13:35 Jesus says: “By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another." If we do not love one another - by this I mean agape love then it is time we reevaluate our faith.

Matthew 7:21-24 is the most frightening passage to me in the entire bible: in it Jesus says “Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. 22Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? 23And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.” Love for others, including our enemies is the surest indication that we are true disciples of Jesus. Let us not allow our love to grow cold.

In Matthew 24:6 - 8 Jesus gives us another clue: “And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. 7For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places. 8All these are the beginning of sorrows.”

Historians all agree that the 20th century was unparalleled in the scale of its human misery created by other humans. No period has witnessed the escalation of wars as has the 20th Century. The Red Cross has estimated that over 100 million people have been killed in wars since the 20th Century began. This is not including genocide of Russians opposed to Stalin, the Jews exterminated during the Holocaust. Up until 1914, war had never been universal, but in both World War 1 & 2 total war was waged.

Since World War II, there have been numerous major wars & hundreds of rebellions & revolutions. The death toll in conflicts since the end of World War II has topped 23 million.

Jesus also predicted in vs. 7 “... and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places...." On March 27th, 1964 Alaska was devastated by a massive earthquake measuring 8.4 on the Richter scale. In the 30 years since the great Alaska quake, there have been as many major earthquakes as in the entire previous 2000 years of world history!

The World Almanac tells us that there were only 21 earthquakes of major strength between the years 1000 and 1800. But between 1800 and 1900 there were 18 major earthquakes. In the next 50 years, between 1900 and 1950, there were 33 major quakes, and between 1950 and 1991 there were 93 major earthquakes, almost tripling the number of the previous half century, and claiming the lives of 1.3 million people around the world. This dramatic increase of severe quakes has led many scientists to predict that we are entering a new period of great seismic disturbances.

Last Sunday a 9.0 Earthquake which caused a tsunami in an area of the world that is primarily Muslims, Buddhists and Hindus of Indonesia, Sri Lanka, India, Thailand, Malaysia, and Somalia.

...and there shall be famines, and pestilences...." (Matthew 24:7)

The HIV virus, which causes AIDS, has currently infected at least 13 to 14 million people around the globe. In 1993 AIDS became the leading cause of death of U.S. males between the ages of 20 and 45. Harvard University scientists estimate that there are over 25 million people worldwide who have full-blown AIDS, and an additional 100 million people will be infected with the HIV virus. However, AIDS is not the only modern plague to afflict mankind. Virtually unheard of among our ancestors, over 100 different kinds of cancer now kill over 5 million people every year.

Epidemics of typhoid, diphtheria, and even the Black Death, have afflicted areas of India and the former Soviet Union. Deadly new strains of Malaria, Tuberculosis and Cholera are becoming resistant to all known antibiotics and are killing millions of people.

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