What the Bible Says about the Resurrection

For I know that my Redeemer lives,
and at the last he will stand upon the earth.
26And after my skin has been thus destroyed,
yet in my flesh I shall see God,
27whom I shall see for myself,
and my eyes shall behold, and not another.
My heart faints within me!

[Job 19:25-27]

As I ponder the unsearchable depths of God’s mercy and love displayed on the cross of Christ this Good Friday, I also want to reflect on the immeasurable power of His resurrection. The resurrection of Jesus Christ is the cornerstone of the Christian faith and the central event in history that validates the truth of the gospel and the divine nature of God’s Son.

Only Jesus has demonstrated power over the grave and declared victory once and for all over death. He stands alone and is without equal, and He alone is able to give eternal life to all who believe in Him [Romans 6:23, John 11:25-26].

No human in history has been able to beat death, and therefore Jesus in His resurrection power is the only hope for all mankind.

Volumes have been written on the ramifications of the resurrection, so I am not sure if I can add much to what has already been said. Having said that, here are a few thoughts on what the Bible says about the resurrection.

The Resurrection is an Expectation in the Old Testament

Many may be surprised to discover that before the New Testament witness about the incarnation of the Messiah — Jesus Christ — the resurrection was deeply established in the Hebrew Scriptures — or Old Testament. As in the opening passage above from Job, the expectation of a final resurrection of the body is not merely a New Testament idea. The patriarchs and the prophets understood that God’s grand plan of redemption would culminate at the end of this present age with the renewal of all things in the age to come.

Hebrews tells us that Abraham offered up Isaac in faith, believing that God would raise his beloved son from the dead [Hebrews 11:17-19]. Moses, David, Elijah, Isaiah, Ezekiel, and Daniel all prophesied about the day of resurrection, and more importantly about the coming Redeemer who would raise and gather God’s people in the end.

Consider just a few of those prophetic passages that we discover in the Old Testament.

Your dead shall live; their bodies shall rise.
You who dwell in the dust, awake and sing for joy!
For your dew is a dew of light,
and the earth will give birth to the dead.

[Isaiah 26:19]

Therefore prophesy, and say to them, Thus says the Lord GOD: Behold, I will open your graves and raise you from your graves, O my people. And I will bring you into the land of Israel13And you shall know that I am the LORD, when I open your graves, and raise you from your graves, O my people.14And I will put my Spirit within you, and you shall live, and I will place you in your own land. Then you shall know that I am the LORD; I have spoken, and I will do it, declares the LORD.”

[Ezekiel 37:12-14]

And many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt. 3And those who are wise shall shine like the brightness of the sky above; and those who turn many to righteousness, like the stars forever and ever.

[Daniel 12:3-4]

As you can see, the resurrection is not a New Testament idea, but it did take the first advent of Christ to bring it into an entirely new perspective.

Jesus is the Firstfruits of Resurrection

But in fact Christ has been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep.

[1 Corinthians 15:20]
Golden wheat field and a beautiful summer sunset Wallpaper ...

The death of Jesus Christ on the cross can only be validated in light of His resurrection. Jesus was raised for our justification, proving that His sacrifice on the cross was acceptable to the Father and sufficient to save sinners. Without the resurrection of Jesus, our faith is futile and we are still in our sins [1 Cor. 15:17].

Beyond that, the resurrection of Jesus Christ is God’s demonstration of power over death that provides the blessed assurance and eternal hope that we too will live in Christ. Jesus makes the most definitive declaration about Himself in John’s gospel.

Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, 26and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?

[John 11:25-26]

God has declared a Day when He has promised to redeem all of creation, including our physical bodies [see Romans 8:18-24]. Until that Day, all who believe in Christ receive the promised Holy Spirit as a deposit to guarantee our future resurrection. Jesus is the firstfruits, and all who believe in Him will be raised up on the last day as part of God’s great harvest!

If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you.

[Romans 8:11]

The Resurrection of the Righteous will Occur on the Last Day

For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who looks on the Son and believes in him should have eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day.

[John 6:40]
The Resurrection of Public Blockchains - CoinDesk

From Job to Daniel to Jesus to Paul, the testimony of the Biblical prophets is in absolute agreement. The resurrection of God’s people takes place at the end of this age on the last day when Jesus returns in power and great glory. The 2nd Coming of Christ is the Day of resurrection [see 1 Cor. 15:21-26]. It is the Day of God’s final gathering of His people. It is the harvest of the righteous to inherit the Kingdom [see Matthew 13:36-43].

The resurrection is the most critical and distinguishable element and identifying marker in Scripture that determines the timing of the return of Christ to earth, the rapture of the church, the recompense for evil, and the restoration of all things. The Bible is clear. The resurrection of the righteous takes place on the last day of this present age.

But each will be resurrected in his own order: Christ the firstfruits, then at his coming those who belong to Christ. 24Then comes the end, when he delivers the kingdom to God the Father after destroying every rule and every authority and power.

[1 Corinthians 15:23-24]

Flesh and blood cannot inherit the coming kingdom of God. In other words, it is impossible for anyone to enter God’s kingdom in mortal flesh. No one can dwell in God’s holy presence on earth without first receiving a glorified, immortal body, and no one will receive their resurrected body until Jesus Christ returns to earth as King of kings.

I tell you this, brothers: flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable. 51Behold! I tell you a mystery. We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, 52in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed. 

[1 Corinthians 15:50-52]

It will be at that moment — when we receive our immortal, glorified bodies — that we finally will be conformed to the image of Christ and His likeness forever! Until that Day, we rest in the finished work of Christ upon the cross for us, and we rejoice in the hope of the future glory that will be revealed in us when Jesus returns!

For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God … And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies.

[Romans 8:19, 23]

Even so, come quickly Lord Jesus! Come!

Types and Shadows — The Two Days of Hosea

After two days he will revive us;
on the third day he will raise us up,
that we may live before him.

[Hosea 6:2]

The often neglected book of Hosea contains one of the most fascinating prophecies in all of Scripture about the timing of the return of Jesus Christ. As I have studied this passage, I have become ever more convinced that the LORD gave Hosea a prophetic key that plainly unlocks the general timeline between the first and second coming of Messiah.

Jesus commends those who stay awake and who are ready and watching for His return in hopeful expectation. Knowing that we are called to discern the signs of the times and recognize the nearness of the Lord’s return, Hosea’s prophecy becomes that much more interesting.

Let’s take a closer look.

I Will Return Again to My Place

I will return again to my place,
until they acknowledge their guilt and seek my face,
and in their distress earnestly seek me.

[Hosea 5:15]

Hosea spent his entire ministry warning Israel of her idolatry and spiritual adultery and at the same time calling her back to God. Israel repeatedly had been unfaithful the LORD by playing the whore with other gods and eventually would suffer exile for her apostasy. It is within this context that Hosea provides a fascinating prophecy.

Notice the LORD — speaking through Hosea — says that He will “return again to His place until they acknowledge their guilt and seek my face” [Hosea 5:15]. At this point in redemptive history [8th Century B.C.], the Lord Jesus had not yet come in the flesh, much less had a chance to return to His place.

Yet the LORD tells Israel that He will return again to His place (in heaven) and will not come back to restore the Kingdom until the believing remnant of national/ethnic Israel experiences true repentance and calls in faith upon the name of the Lord. Obviously the LORD can’t return again to heaven unless He first descends from heaven to earth, which is at the heart of the gospel message. The Word became flesh.

If I have told you earthly things and you do not believe, how can you believe if I tell you heavenly things? 13No one has ascended into heaven except he who descended from heaven, the Son of Man … that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.

[John 3:12-13,15]

In the fullness of time, the Creator entered His own Creation. God so loved the world that He sent forth His Only Son, born of a woman, to redeem mankind through His death, burial, resurrection, and ascension to the right hand of the Father on high. Jesus echoes Hosea’s language in the gospels.

The Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised.

[Luke 9:22]

“Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. 2In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? 3And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also. 4And you know the way to where I am going.”

[John 14:1-3]

What Hosea prophesied looking forward to Jesus, we now see by looking back through the cross, resurrection, and ascension of Christ. Jesus came and returned to His place again by ascending to the highest position of authority in the universe.

So then the Lord Jesus, after he had spoken to them, was taken up into heaven and sat down at the right hand of God.

[Mark 16:19]

And when he [Jesus] had said these things, as they were looking on, he was lifted up, and a cloud took him out of their sight10And while they were gazing into heaven as he went, behold, two men stood by them in white robes,11and said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into heaven? This Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven.

[Acts 1:9-11]

Since the Lord has already returned to His place by ascending to heaven, we are awaiting the Day when Jesus will rise up and leave His place in heaven to come tread the earth in judgment.

Hear, you peoples, all of you;
pay attention, O earth, and all that is in it,
and let the Lord GOD be a witness against you,
the Lord from his holy temple.
3For behold, the LORD is coming out of his place,
and will come down and tread upon the high places of the earth
.
4And the mountains will melt under him,
and the valleys will split open,
like wax before the fire,
like waters poured down a steep place.
5All this is for the transgression of Jacob
and for the sins of the house of Israel
.
What is the transgression of Jacob?
Is it not Samaria?
And what is the high place of Judah?
Is it not Jerusalem?

[Micah 1:2-5]

After Two Days He Will Raise Us Up

To understand the context of the passage, it is necessary to circle back to Hosea’s prophecy.

Come, let us return to the LORD;
for he has torn us, that he may heal us;
he has struck us down, and he will bind us up.
2After two days he will revive us;
on the third day he will raise us up,
that we may live before him
.
3Let us know; let us press on to know the LORD;
his going out is sure as the dawn;
he will come to us as the showers,
as the spring rains that water the earth
.

[Hosea 6:1-3]

Hosea prophesied that after “two days” both the house of Israel and Judah would return to the LORD in repentance and faith during a time of great affliction. God promises to “revive” them after two days and on the “third day” to raise them up so that they may forever live before Him.

As I have already pointed out, this prophecy applies both to the first and second comings of Christ. Remember, after coming the fist time Messiah returned again to his place — which is the Ascension of Christ — and then after two days Messiah will return and resurrect His people.

The Apostle Paul echoes Hosea and connects his prophecy to the first coming of the Lord.

For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures4that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures, 

[1 Corinthians 15:3-4]

So how are we to understand Hosea’s prophecy concerning the 2nd Coming of the Lord?

First, we must recognize that God has revealed to us the prophetic pattern of redemptive history in the original 7-Day creation week in Genesis 1. Each of the six days of creation coincide with an epoch of 1,000 years of redemptive history, which means that the Biblical and historical timeline of human history falls within a literal 6,000 year period. The 7th Day Sabbath established by God also represents the prophetic Day of the LORD, when Christ returns to rule His kingdom for 1,000 years, which is equivalent to one day of rest. I have written extensively on this topic, so to discover more read the following blog — The Day of the LORD.

I believe the chart below helps provides a helpful visual of how one day with the LORD is like a thousand years, and a thousand years is like one day.

Exposing Post-Trib Deceptions
7 Days of Redemptive History = 7,000 Years

So just to clarify, here is the pattern of the prophetic day as represented by 1,000 years.

  • From Adam to Abraham there were approximately 2,000 years = 2 Days.
  • From Abraham to the First coming of Jesus there were another 2,000 years = 2 Days.
  • From the Ascension of Jesus to His Return to Earth there is another 2,000 years = 2 Days.
  • The Day of the LORD is the final 7th Day of Rest = 1,000 year Millennial Kingdom.

So if I am interpreting Hosea’s prophecy accurately, the Lord Jesus will return 2,000 years — or 2 Days — after His first coming and ascension to heaven. Consequently, that means that if Jesus was crucified, resurrected and ascended to heaven approximately 30-35 A.D. — depending on which scholar you ask — then we should be able to calculate His return to be about 2,000 years later, which means that we could expect Jesus to return somewhere around 2030-2035 A.D.

Notice also that Hosea places the timing of the resurrection of the dead to take place after two days = 2,000 years = from Messiah’s first coming. The Scriptures all agree that the resurrection of the righteous occurs when Jesus Christ returns from heaven to earth in power and great glory to gather His people to Himself. [see Daniel 12:1-3, 1 Thessalonians 4:13-17, Matthew 13:36-43, Matthew 24:27-31, John 11:17-27, 1 Corinthians 15:20-28, Revelation 14:14-20]

For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who looks on the Son and believes in him should have eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day.

[John 6:40]

I am fully aware that many may struggle with the possibility of associating any kind of date with the return of Jesus because of the unfortunate doctrine of “imminency,” which teaches that Jesus could return at any moment and that it is impossible to know when His coming will be.

What many people don’t know is that this is not a Biblical concept. Quite to the contrary, Jesus and the prophets consistently challenge believers to discern the signs and be prepared and ready for His coming. Hence Jesus says, “when you see all these things, you know that he is near, at the very gates” [Matthew 24:33].

In Their Distress They Will Seek Me

I will return again to my place,
until they acknowledge their guilt and seek my face,
and in their distress earnestly seek me.

[Hosea 5:15]

The final compelling component to Hosea’s prophecy is found in his reference to the great tribulation — also known as Jacob’s trouble. Notice the condition Hosea provides for the Lord’s return. The Lord is waiting for the national repentance of both Israel and Judah when they confess their sin of unbelief and acknowledge that Jesus Christ is both Savior and Lord.

The Bible contains dozens of prophecies about a believing remnant of Israel turning to the Lord Jesus Christ after going through the fires of the great tribulation. Hosea just so happens to use the very same word for tribulation that is used throughout the Old Testament to describe the final time of Jacob’s trouble at the end of the age. It is the Hebrew word tsar — צַר — which means narrow, a tight place, adversary, affliction, anguish, close, distress, enemy, flint, foe, sorrow, strait, tribulation, trouble.

Here is just a sampling of passages describing this unprecedented time of distress.

Alas! That day is so great
there is none like it;

it is a time of distress for Jacob;
yet he shall be saved out of it.

[Jeremiah 30:7]

And I will show wonders in the heavens and on the earth, blood and fire and columns of smoke. 31The sun shall be turned to darkness, and the moon to blood, before the great and dreadful day of the LORD comes32And it shall come to pass that everyone who calls on the name of the LORD shall be saved. For in Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there shall be those who escape, as the LORD has said, and among the survivors shall be those whom the LORD calls.

[Joel 2:30-32]

At that time shall arise Michael, the great prince who has charge of your people. And there shall be a time of trouble, such as never has been since there was a nation till that time. But at that time your people shall be delivered, everyone whose name shall be found written in the book. 2And many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt.

[Daniel 12:1-2]

Jesus also affirms that He will not return until Israel acknowledges her guilt and calls upon the name of the Lord in faith.

O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to it! How often would I have gathered your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you were not willing! 38See, your house is left to you desolate.39For I tell you, you will not see me again, until you say, “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.”

[Mt. 23:37-39]

The prophet Zechariah and the Apostle Paul add some important finishing touches to this prophecy.

And on that day I will seek to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem. 10“And I will pour out on the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem a spirit of grace and pleas for mercy, so that, when they look on me, on him whom they have pierced, they shall mourn for him, as one mourns for an only child, and weep bitterly over him, as one weeps over a firstborn.

[Zechariah 12:9-10]

Lest you be wise in your own sight, I do not want you to be unaware of this mystery, brothers: a partial hardening has come upon Israel, until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in. 26And in this way all Israel will be saved, as it is written,

“The Deliverer will come from Zion,
he will banish ungodliness from Jacob”;
27“and this will be my covenant with them
when I take away their sins.”

[Romans 11:25-27]

If Hosea’s fascinating “Two-Day” prophecy is correct, then we are fast approaching this unprecedented time of great tribulation that will lead to the end of this present age — or the completion of 6,000 years. If that is true, then the Day of the Lord Jesus Christ is critically close, and His coming Kingdom of 1,000 years is drawing near — even at the very gates!

Even so, come quickly Lord Jesus!

2021 What to Watch For — The Great Apostasy

And these are the ones sown on rocky ground: the ones who, when they hear the word, immediately receive it with joy. And they have no root in themselves, but endure for a while; then, when tribulation or persecution arises on account of the word, immediately they fall away.

[Mark 4:16-17]

As I shared in my last post, the fires of persecution often spark a spiritual awakening that leads to genuine revival in some of the most oppressed regions of the world. This sword of suffering for Christ cuts both ways, however, and quickly separates the faithful remnant from the many pretenders in the “church.”

What’s more is that when Jesus and the Apostles taught us about the primary signs of the end, they identified an unprecedented time of spiritual deception leading to a mass defection from the faith. As we will see, the Scriptures are clear that before the Lord Jesus comes again, many will fall away and be offended for the sake of Christ.

This phenomenon is known as the Great Apostasy, the falling away, or final rebellion of this age, and as the satanic spirit of this age continues to work in the children of disobedience, the stage now is set for the greatest mass defection from Jesus Christ the world has ever seen.

As Jesus says, “when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?” [Luke 18:8]

The Great Apostasy According to Jesus

Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and put you to death, and you will be hated by all nations for my name’s sake. 10And then many will fall away and betray one another and hate one another.11And many false prophets will arise and lead many astray. 12And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold. 13But the one who endures to the end will be saved14And this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.

[Matthew 24:9-15]

As the Word become flesh, Jesus obviously is our supreme authority in all matters of faith and practice. When it comes to His masterful teachings on end-times prophecy [eschatology], Jesus connects this significant “falling away” with the time of great tribulation. Consider how Jesus describes this coming Great Apostasy in Matthew 24.

  1. All who identify with the name of Jesus Christ — “christians” — will be hated by all nations, persecuted and put to death for His name’s sake.
  2. At that time, many will fall away and choose to save their lives, refusing to suffer and die for Christ by publicly defecting from the faith and renouncing the name of Jesus.
  3. These same defectors then will betray other fellow believers and family members and actively participate in the persecution of the saints.
  4. The lawlessness and social chaos that ensues will create universal distrust, as love for God and our fellow man will grow cold.
  5. Those who remain faithful to Christ and endure to very end will be saved.
  6. The faithful remnant of gospel witnesses — martyrs — will give their lives as a testimony to all nations before Jesus comes.

By using the word “many,” Jesus is implying that a majority of those who identify with Him in the end will not faithfully endure, but only a remnant will be saved. This is the same idea Jesus used in the comparison of the hard road that leads to eternal life and the easy road that leads to destruction. Many will enter the way that leads to death, while only a few will enter the narrow way to life. [Matthew 7:13-14]

On a side note, Jesus uses one of two Greek New Testament words that can be translated “fall away.” Here in Matthew 24 and also in the parable of the sower [Mark 4, Matthew 13], Jesus uses the verb skandalizó, which means “to put a snare (in the way), hence to cause to stumble, to give offense” or “to cause a person to begin to distrust and desert one whom he ought to trust and obey; to cause to fall away.”

The Apostle Paul — in building upon Jesus’ teachings — uses a slightly different word with a nearly identical meaning.

The Great Apostasy According to Paul

Now the Spirit expressly says that in later times some will depart from the faith by devoting themselves to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons2through the insincerity of liars whose consciences are seared.

[1 Timothy 4:1-2]

In describing the very same end-times defection from the faith, Paul uses the Greek word apostasia, which is derived from the verb aphistémi. Both of these words carry the connotation of defecting, leaving, departing, or withdrawing from a position once held. This is where we get the word apostasy.

In one of the most comprehensive explanations of Jesus’ teaching on the last days, Paul emphasizes this mass defection from the faith, as untold millions will turn away from Christ to follow the man of lawlessness — the Antichrist. Furthermore, Paul uses the Great Apostasy and the revealing of the Antichrist as definitive signs that must take place BEFORE Jesus Christ will return.

In other words, Jesus Christ cannot and will not come “at any moment,” but rather there are identifiable signs and prophetic markers that must transpire first before Jesus Christ will return. Much to the surprise of many, these signs must take place before the “coming of our Lord Jesus” and the Day of the LORD, which is precisely why Jesus told us to be watchful and ready for His return.

Now concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered together to him, we ask you, brothers, 2not to be quickly shaken in mind or alarmed, either by a spirit or a spoken word, or a letter seeming to be from us, to the effect that the day of the Lord has come. 3Let no one deceive you in any way. For that day will not come, unless the apostasy comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of destruction, who opposes and exalts himself against every so-called god or object of worship, so that he takes his seat in the temple of God, proclaiming himself to be God … And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord Jesus will kill with the breath of his mouth and bring to nothing by the appearance of his coming.

[2 Thessalonians 2:1-4, 8]

It is evident that the whole world lies in the power of the evil one and has been blinded by the god of this age. Sadly this will include millions who have identified with Christ, made professions of faith, and become “members” of the church, but who will prove to be self-deceived posers and imposters in the end. Never has there been a more sobering time for God’s people to examine ourselves and measure ourselves by the Biblical qualifications of a true follower of Jesus Christ.

Only those born of the Spirit of God will be able to discern truth from error and test the spirits of our age. Only those born of the Spirit will overcome the world. Only those born of the Spirit will endure to the end and so be saved. [see Luke 12:8-9, 11-12, John 3:1-8]

Which leads me to my final and most important point.

Those Who Belong to Christ Will Endure to the End

Therefore, dear friends, since you have been forewarned, be on your guard so that you may not be carried away by the error of the lawless and fall from your secure position. 18But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and forever! Amen

[2 Peter 3:17-18]

The idea of apostasy brings with it the age-old debate about the eternal security of the believer and whether or not a person can “lose” his or her salvation. Obviously entire volumes of work have been written from both sides of the soteriological camps on this issue, so let me just cut right through it all and offer a Biblical resolution.

Here is what the Scriptures clearly teach about our assurance of salvation.

  1. Those who have heard the gospel and personally trusted in Jesus Christ have been born again, indwelled by and sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is our deposit guarantee of eternal life. [see John 3:3-8, Ephesians 1:13-14]
  2. Those who have believed in Jesus Christ immediately receive eternal life and have crossed over from death into life. [John 5:24, 1 John 5:11-12]
  3. Those who have trusted in Jesus will never perish and can never be snatched out of His hand. [John 10:28-30]
  4. Those who have believed in God’s only Son can never be separated from his love. [Romans 8:31-39]
  5. Those who believe in Jesus Christ have been born of God and already have overcome the world and will endure to the end. [1 John 5:4-5]

The answer is not complicated in my opinion. True believers in Christ Jesus — those who have been spiritually reborn of God — will never walk away from their Lord and their God. True believers in Jesus — those who have been indwelled by the Holy Spirit — will never abandon their faith in Christ no matter what the cost. True believers in Christ — those who belong to God — can never lose their salvation but will endure faithfully to the end.

And if there was ever any doubt to this truth, the Apostle John puts all the doubts to rest. I am so thankful that we have the full counsel of God’s word to resolve these issues.

The bottom line is this … Those who fall away in the end never belonged to God in the first place.

Dear children, this is the last hour; and as you have heard that the antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have come. This is how we know it is the last hour. 19They went out from us, but they did not really belong to us. For if they had belonged to us, they would have remained with us; but their going showed that none of them belonged to us.

[1 John 2:18-19]

2021 What to Watch For — The Great Purge

For whoever is ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of him will the Son of Man also be ashamed when he comes in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.

[Mark 8:38]

Now that the Biden Administration is in power in Washington for the next four years, a new era in American history has begun. We have entered an era of relentless censorship, cancel culture, and the systematic silencing of anyone who does not champion the political narrative of the radical left. Not unlike the communist and socialist dictators and tyrants of the past, we are soon to be living in a dystopian nightmare where the designated “thought police” will arbitrarily decide what is free and acceptable speech and at the same time ruthlessly shame and silence anyone who is willing to think for themselves.

The deep state and radical left will undoubtedly pressure their new puppet Joe Biden to crack down on “dissidents” even harder on every conceivable platform. If we think we have experienced an assault on our First Amendment rights — as we say in the South — “we ain’t seen nothin’ yet.”

Here is what to expect now that the political powers have totally shifted into the hands of the most godless people in government.

Top 5 Reasons to Get Excited About THE PURGE Season 2 ...

Radical “Reprogramming” in Education

We can be sure that this new administration will introduce abhorrent curriculum and push their perverse policies on all children in the public school systems and universities across the nation. Under new Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona, we can expect universal indoctrination of such garbage as critical race theory and the preposterous promotion of transgenderism in our schools. Any teachers and administrators who refuse to comply will be fired. Any parents who object will be silenced. Any student who doesn’t regurgitate the radical mantras will fail.

Every good communist knows, as Hitler said, “He alone, who owns the youth, gains the future.”

Radical Criminalization of “Hate Speech”

The radical left is not satisfied with simply silencing any alternative voices. They aim to criminalize what they deem to be “hate speech.” The only problem is … who gets to decide what qualifies as hate speech? In other words, many regard the gospel of Jesus Christ as offensive and therefore hate speech. How long before sharing the gospel publicly will be a crime in America?

And if you are so naive to believe that these beliefs only represent “fringe” groups of the radical left, you are living in fantasy land. Michael Goodwin does a great job showing how this agenda is front and center among liberals.

“My prediction is that we are watching the early innings of a movement to criminalize political speech. There already are efforts on the left to criminalize “hate” speech and the next step is obvious: label as hate speech anything the left doesn’t like.”

[Michael Goodwin — New York Post]

Radical Censorship on All Media Platforms

We have already seen how easily the mainstream media and big-tech giants can collaborate to arbitrarily censor free speech, demonetize platforms, fact-check truth, and silence individuals whom they deem “dangerous” or “threatening.” With a monopoly on information and an entire generation who has been raise by Google and has zero capacity to think for themselves, I shudder to think what the next four years will bring. The information machine controls not only the dissemination of information but also the interpretation of it. We have become such shallow thinkers that we need these “gods” of information to tell us what to believe.

As Senator Marco Rubio has said, “We are now living in a country where four or five companies, unelected, unaccountable, have the monopoly power to decide, we’re gonna wipe people out, we’re going to erase them from any digital platform.” In addition to that reality, the imbecilic Senator from New York — Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez — recently said that she is in favor of creating new government initiatives that will help “rein in” the press. Translation: The radical left wants total control of state-run, state-sponsored media.

This only scratches the surface of the challenges we now face as followers of Jesus Christ.

So what can we do?

Be Ready, Be Unashamed, Be Faithful

For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.

[1 Corinthians 1:18]

Make no mistake about it. The gospel of Jesus Christ does not meet the community standards of the social media fact checkers. The gospel of Jesus Christ qualifies as hate speech in this godless post-Christian culture. The gospel is quite offensive to the sinner, and therefore we can expect the cancel culture to silence us, censor us, and criminalize us as “hate mongers” in the new America.

First, we can’t be surprised when this fiery trial comes upon us as if something strange were happening. This must be expected. We must be prepared. Jesus reminds us that He did not come to bring peace but a sword of division. Jesus warned us that this would happen to all who acknowledge Him before men.

Second, we must never be ashamed of Jesus Christ and His gospel. Our Savior bled and died for us, while we were still His enemies. The very least we can do is be willing to be reviled and persecuted for His name’s sake.

For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek. 

[Romans 1:16]

Lastly, we must remain faithful to God, seeking to please Him before any man or government or big-tech giant. Without faith it is impossible to please God. In the end, it is God to whom we must give an account of our lives — not man. May we live in such a way that we are able to stand before God on that Day of judgment and be rewarded for our faithfulness and devotion to Him, no matter what the cost.

We will not be silenced!

“We strictly charged you not to teach in this name, yet here you have filled Jerusalem with your teaching, and you intend to bring this man’s blood upon us.” But Peter and the apostles answered, “We must obey God rather than men.

[Acts 5:28-28]

Maranatha!

Epiphany — The Appearing of God

For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age, waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ

[Titus 2:11-13]

Today is January 6th, 2021 — Epiphany.

On the traditional “Christian” calendar — especially in Roman Catholic, Anglican, and Eastern Orthodox persuasions — today is regarded as the holy day of the Epiphany, which is the celebration of the manifestation of the Messiah of Israel, the Son of God and Savior of the world. As one of the oldest Christian holidays — even predating December 25 — it would be well worth some time to discover more about the origin, history and meaning behind such a sacred festival. Here is a helpful article from the Catholic perspective.

Primarily, the Feast of Epiphany is associated with the visit of the wise men — magi from the east — who first interpreted and then tracked a star to Jerusalem to investigate the birth of the King of the Jews [Matthew 2]. After finding the newborn King in Bethlehem, the magi bowed down to worship Him, commemorating the initial manifestation of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles, fulfilling the ancient promise that the Messiah of Israel had come to bless all the nations of the earth with His eternal salvation [Genesis 12:3].

While the visitation the Magi and the mystery of the gospel to the Gentiles is also a topic most worthy of discovery and discussion, I would like to take today’s post in a different direction — an eschatological direction. The word epiphany itself is revealing in that its Biblical expression is more closely connected to the second advent of Jesus Christ than to His birth.

As we are about to see, epiphany literally means “brilliant appearance” or “glorious manifestation,” as derived from the Greek word — epiphaneia [ἐπιφάνεια]. The Biblical authors used this word intentionally to describe the visible and awesome display of the glory of God when He comes from heaven in power at the end of the age. In other words, in light of His first appearing as the Suffering Servant, we should be living in hopeful expectation of the appearing of Jesus Christ as the Conquering King.

Epiphany in the Prophets

There are so many prophetic references in the Old Testament that describe the visible and glorious appearance of the LORD when He comes to judge the nations. All of these Scriptures emphasize the conspicuous nature of the Day of the LORD. For brevity, I will only share a few here.

Then the LORD will appear over them,
and his arrow will go forth like lightning;
the Lord GOD will sound the trumpet
and will march forth in the whirlwinds of the south.

[Zechariah 9:14]

God came from Teman,
and the Holy One from Mount Paran. Selah
His splendor covered the heavens,
and the earth was full of his praise.
His brightness was like the light;
rays flashed from his hand;
and there he veiled his power.

[Habakkuk 3:3-4]

And all the people who are on the face of the earth, shall quake at my presence. And the mountains shall be thrown down, and the cliffs shall fall, and every wall shall tumble to the ground … So I will show my greatness and my holiness and make myself known in the eyes of many nations. Then they will know that I am the LORD.

[Ezekiel 38:20, 23]

Now let’s take a look at how the Apostles used the word epiphany in the New Testament to further develop this doctrine of God’s future appearing.

Epiphany in the New Testament

Behold, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him, even those who pierced him, and all tribes of the earth will wail on account of him. Even so. Amen.

[Revelation 1:7]

The appearing of Jesus Christ is inextricably connected to several key eschatological events. The Apostle Paul was exclusive in his use of the Greek word, epiphaneia, though other Apostles used a similar Greek word — phaneroó φανερόω — to describe the appearing of Christ. These words, along with the words “coming” and “revelation,” are used interchangeably throughout the New Testament.

Jesus will appear to destroy the lawless one

In his second letter to the Thessalonians, the Apostle Paul provides a significant detail about the “appearing” of Jesus Christ — namely that it will be the precise moment He destroys the antichrist [aka the lawless one]. It is also worth considering that Paul connects the appearing of Jesus with His “coming” and the Day of the LORD.

Now concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered together to him, we ask you, brothers, not to be quickly shaken in mind or alarmed, either by a spirit or a spoken word, or a letter seeming to be from us, to the effect that the day of the Lord has come. Let no one deceive you in any way. For that day will not come, unless the rebellion comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of destruction, who opposes and exalts himself against every so-called god or object of worship, so that he takes his seat in the temple of God, proclaiming himself to be God.

And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord Jesus will kill with the breath of his mouth and bring to nothing by the appearance of his coming.

[2 Thessalonians 2:1-4, 8]

We know from other passages like Revelation 19 that the Beast (antichrist) is destroyed at the end of the great tribulation, therefore, the appearing of Jesus Christ must be at the end of the great tribulation.

Jesus will appear at the appointed time

Paul encouraged Timothy to remain faithful and fight the good fight of faith to the end, which he correlates with the appearing of Jesus Christ.

I charge you in the presence of God, who gives life to all things, and of Christ Jesus, who in his testimony before Pontius Pilate made the good confession,14to keep the commandment unstained and free from reproach until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ, 15which he will display at the proper time—he who is the blessed and only Sovereign, the King of kings and Lord of lords, 16who alone has immortality, who dwells in unapproachable light, whom no one has ever seen or can see. To him be honor and eternal dominion. Amen

[1 Timothy 6:13-16]

Jesus will appear to establish His kingdom

In Paul’s second letter to Timothy, he connects the epiphany of Christ to His coming kingdom on earth. Again, God’s kingdom will be established at the end of this present age.

I charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by his appearing and his kingdom

[2 Timothy 4:1]

Jesus will appear to reward the saints

In the very same passage, Paul links the final rewarding of the faithful saints to the appearing of Christ.

Henceforth there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that day, and not only to me but also to all who have loved his appearing.

[2 Timothy 4:8]

Jesus will appear in glory

For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age, waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works.

[Titus 2:11-14]

Paul, in one of the most profound statements in the New Testament, says that our blessed hope is the appearing of our “great God and Savior Jesus Christ!” And because we interpret Scripture with Scripture, we now know that this appearing will take place at the end of the age when Jesus Christ comes in visible glory to destroy the antichrist, establish His kingdom and reward His saints.

It is critical in understanding that the appearing of Christ IS NOT a secret, phantom event but rather the most profound display of God’s glory the world has ever seen! The appearing of Jesus Christ will be LITERAL, VISIBLE, PHYSICAL, and UNMISTAKABLE!

In closing, I would like to remind everyone reading this post that the epiphany of Jesus Christ is much more than the story of His birth — as glorious as it was. The epiphany of Jesus Christ is the story of the coming Day when He returns in power and great glory for all the world to see. It is this appearing that we must be prepared to face. It is this appearing that we cannot escape.

The Apostle John leaves us with a reminder of how sobering this appearing will be. Are you prepared to meet Jesus Christ? Is your soul yearning for the appearing of our great God and Savior? Or will you shrink back in fear on that Day when His glory is revealed?

And now, little children, abide in him, so that when he appears we may have confidence and not shrink from him in shame at his coming.

[1 John 2:28]

Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is.

[1 John 3:2]

Even so, come Lord Jesus!

My Top 5 Predictions for 2021

He said, “Go your way, Daniel, for the words are shut up and sealed until the time of the end. Many shall purify themselves and make themselves white and be refined, but the wicked shall act wickedly. And none of the wicked shall understand, but those who are wise shall understand.

[Daniel 12:9-10]

The popular movement of modern-day “prophets” is suspect at best in my estimation, as men and women who supposedly possess the prophetic gift make bold predictions that rarely come to pass. The Biblical warning to those who speak presumptuously for the LORD is indeed sobering, yet many of these so-called prophets of today seem to disregard the gravity of their claims.

But the prophet who presumes to speak a word in my name that I have not commanded him to speak, or who speaks in the name of other gods, that same prophet shall die.’ 21And if you say in your heart, ‘How may we know the word that the LORD has not spoken?’— 22when a prophet speaks in the name of the LORD, if the word does not come to pass or come true, that is a word that the LORD has not spoken; the prophet has spoken it presumptuously. You need not be afraid of him.

[Deuteronomy 18:20-22]

Now I am not saying that the prophetic gift of the Holy Spirit has ceased completely. I believe that all the gifts of the Spirit are still viable to operate in and through God’s people in accordance with God’s word, even though the “sign” gifts of tongues, healings, miracles, and prophecy have been grossly abused by charlatans in the church [see Romans 12 and 1 Corinthians 1214].

I have never claimed to possess the prophetic gift myself — inasmuch as that gift includes the ability to foresee the future — and therefore I will not presume to speak a word from the LORD other than what has been revealed in the written, prophetic word — which is quite sufficient.

So for my final post of 2020, I will not be attempting to predict the future or prophesy over 2021 with specific details. However, in a general sense, there are many things we can and should expect in 2021 that the Bible unequivocally reveals. Furthermore, the mission and purpose of the church never changes until Jesus Himself rends the heavens and comes down to reign as King of kings. Until that Day comes, our job remains the same.

These are my top 5 predictions that we need to prepare for and that we are sure to see in 2021.

#1 — The True Remnant of Believers will be further Set Apart from the World

I have given them your word, and the world has hated them because they are not of the world, just as I am not of the world. 15I do not ask that you take them out of the world, but that you keep them from the evil one.

[John 17:14-15]

The call to follow Christ is the call to be set apart — separate from the evil world system that dominates this present age. God is calling His people to “come out” of Babylon before she falls — forsaking her immoralities and vain pleasures. The darker the days become and the more wicked this generation grows, the cost to follow Christ will be more than most are willing to pay.

As those faithful to Jesus Christ become more resolute in their love and devotion to God, the world around us will grow increasingly more hostile. The spirit of antichrist will always manifest in merciless hostility and hatred for the LORD and His Messiah, resulting in all forms of persecution and tribulation for the faithful.

Of course, we live in a day when Christians are being persecuted at an unprecedented rate — especially in parts of Africa, the Middle East and Asia. But it will not stop there.

No matter how intense the opposition, God’s remnant always remains. The Lord always preserves for Himself a faithful remnant who only bow the knee to the Lord Jesus. What believers may lose in numbers, we gain in our resolve and strength in the Spirit to endure and overcome in the end, never denying our Lord Jesus Christ!

All who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted, and as the world presses down harder on us, many will not be willing to pay the high price of following Jesus Christ and will depart from the faith. In an attempt to gain the world and save their lives, many will forfeit their very own souls.

Apostasy and compromise are nothing new in the scope of redemptive history, but the Scriptures are clear that in the latter days, there will be a mass defection from the true faith, leaving only a remnant of God’s children on earth. As the fires of persecution burn hotter, God’s remnant will pass through the flames only to be presented as a pure, white bride, shining brighter than the stars of heaven.

Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and put you to death, and you will be hated by all nations for my name’s sake. 10And then many will fall away and betray one another and hate one another. 11And many false prophets will arise and lead many astray. 12And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold. 13But the one who endures to the end will be saved. 

[Matthew 24:9-13]

2021 will further separate the wheat from the tares [Matthew 13] and the sheep from the goats [Matthew 25], as we approach the final harvest at the end of the age.

#2 — Mass Spiritual Deception will Increase

Now the Spirit expressly says that in later times some will depart from the faith by devoting themselves to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons,2through the insincerity of liars whose consciences are seared.

[1 Timothy 4:1-2]

I have written extensively this year about the coming spiritual deception and the manipulation of the masses by the spirt of this age that is at work in the sons of disobedience. Only those who are sealed with the Holy Spirit and possess the mind of Christ will survive the coming deception. Only those who possess the divine wisdom of the Holy Scriptures will be able to identify falsehood and contend for the true faith.

Everyone else will be led astray to exchange the truth of God for a lie and become blinded by by god of this world. Confusion and chaos will continue to cloud the minds of unbelievers, while God’s children will possess divine wisdom to see things as they truly are.

By simply taking a brief inventory of how the majority of the world receives and processes information, it is inevitable that the principalities and powers of evil in the heavenly places have a monopoly on the masses, deceiving the whole world. Consider what dominates and controls the minds of our present age.

False religions and cults, heretical church movements, biased public education systems and liberal universities, the godless scientific community and it’s religion of evolution, fake news from the mainstream media, corrupt career politicians and big government, Hollywood entertainment and television programs, music media and radio programs, superficial social media platforms and big tech companies, including the GoogleAppleAmazon monster itself.

The only remaining beacon of light in this world comes from the remnant of true believers in Jesus Christ who are bold enough to preach and teach the truth of the gospel and stand on the authority of God’s holy Word.

They are from the world; therefore they speak from the world, and the world listens to them. 6We are from God. Whoever knows God listens to us; whoever is not from God does not listen to us. By this we know the Spirit of truth and the spirit of error.

[1 John 4:5-6]

#3 — Significant Geopolitical Changes in Israel and Middle East

Israel is God’s chosen land and people for a reason. The promises the LORD has made to the descendants of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob will be fulfilled. This means that Israel serves as God’s prophetic timepiece and the key piece in God’s prophetic puzzle.

Once Israel returned to the land and the nation was reestablished in 1948, the prophetic clock began ticking again for the first time in nearly 1,900 years.

Now that the Trump Administration has initiated the Abraham Accords — normalizing relations between Israel and many of her surrounding Muslim neighbors — the geopolitical landscape is quickly changing for the first time in 70 years. These new accords are significant in laying the ground work for a new Middle East.

On the flip side, perennial powers like Turkey and Iran continue to loom over the region as ominous clouds of darkness. Iraq, Syria and Kurdistan have become a political vacuum that inevitably will be filled. It is just a matter of time before there is regional conflict in the Middle East, and Israel will be squarely in the middle of it all.

O God, do not keep silence;
do not hold your peace or be still, O God!
2For behold, your enemies make an uproar;
those who hate you have raised their heads.
3They lay crafty plans against your people;
they consult together against your treasured ones.
4They say, “Come, let us wipe them out as a nation;
let the name of Israel be remembered no more!”
5For they conspire with one accord;
against you they make a covenant—
6the tents of Edom and the Ishmaelites,
Moab and the Hagrites,
7Gebal and Ammon and Amalek,
Philistia with the inhabitants of Tyre;
8Asshur also has joined them;
they are the strong arm of the children of Lot. Selah

[Psalm 83:1-8]

#4 — Labor Pains will Intensify

And Jesus answered them, “See that no one leads you astray. 5For many will come in my name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and they will lead many astray. 6And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not alarmed, for this must take place, but the end is not yet. 7For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and there will be famines and earthquakes in various places. 8All these are but the beginning of the birth pains.

[Matthew 24:4-8]

I shared earlier this year that the COVID-19 crises if anything represents one of the initial birth pains of the last days — perhaps a “Braxton Hicks” contraction — that God is using to get our attention. After nearly a year of the “new normal,” I stand by this assessment and believe that the disruption and confusion and government overreaction to this virus has set a precedent that will only get worse in the future.

Will we be faced with more viruses in the future? Certainly. Will world government leaders continue to use their power to overreach and dictate the lives of the people? Absolutely. Could global economic collapse be the next shoe to drop? Probably.

Based on what we learned in 2020, any of these scenarios are not only possible but probable. Furthermore, we must take into account the potential for more insurrections, revolutions, and wars to emerge out of the chaos. If we then incorporate the potential for famines and food shortages worldwide, it is easy to see a future that is plagued by these coming labor pains.

All we know about the analogy that Jesus provides is that once labor begins, it is irreversible. The contractions will grow more painful, more frequent and more intense as time draws near. And although the coming labor pains are daunting and even disheartening, we must never forget what they are leading to.

The coming of the Son! The return of the Lord Jesus!

Jesus reminds us of the joy we will have on that Day when He comes again — mighty to save!

Aware that they wanted to question Him, Jesus said to them, “Are you asking one another why I said, ‘In a little while you will not see Me, and then after a little while you will see Me’? 20Truly, truly, I tell you, you will weep and wail while the world rejoices. You will grieve, but your grief will turn to joy. 21A woman has pain in childbirth because her time has come; but when she brings forth her child, she forgets her anguish because of her joy that a child has been born into the world.22So also you have sorrow now, but I will see you again and your hearts will rejoice, and no one will take away your joy.

[John 16:19-22]

#5 — Endless Opportunities for Evangelism will Emerge

So when they had come together, they asked him, “Lord, will you at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?” 7He said to them, “It is not for you to know times or seasons that the Father has fixed by his own authority. 8But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”

[Acts 1:6-8]

So my predictions for 2021 can be viewed in a negative light but there is always a silver lining in the coming storm.

Yes, 2021 will further identify and separate God’s faithful remnant from religious pretenders.

Yes, 2021 will further advance the satanic agenda of spiritual deception and manipulation of the masses.

Yes, 2021 will further reveal the new political alignments in the Middle East and set the stage for the time of Jacob’s trouble.

Yes, 2021 will further demonstrate the growing intensity and frequency of the labor pains leading to the great tribulation and triumphant return of Jesus.

Yet in light of all of this, 2021 will also lend itself as one of the greatest opportunities in our lifetime to be witnesses of Jesus Christ and proclaim the gospel to the whole world.

Even though billions are blinded to the truth, they still have a strong sense of fear and trepidation that something is happening on a global scale. Even those who have no knowledge of God and the gospel still understand the concept of the end of the age and the great apocalyptic ending of human history. Even those who deny Christ will not be able to deny the intensity of the labor pains and the fragility of this life.

This is our greatest hour as God’s children to use the prophetic events of our day as natural bridges into gospel conversations. When the world is afraid and uncertain about tomorrow, we have the opportunity to give them hope and peace in Jesus Christ. When the world is confused and in darkness, we have the chance to bring them into the light of Christ and the truth of His gospel. When the world only hears the bad news from every outlet, we have good news to give!

Prophetic evangelism will continue to be one of our most powerful tools in witnessing to this generation. We must continue to pray for opportunities and divine appointments to shed the light of the gospel on a dark world.

This is our time to rise up and be bold witnesses for Christ yet full of compassion and grace toward those around us.

If there is anything I can predict about 2021, it is that we will continue to have opportunities to bring as many into the kingdom as possible, and it is up to us to be obedient to the Great Commission to the very end of the age!

At the same time, pray also for us, that God may open to us a door for the word, to declare the mystery of Christ, on account of which I am in prison— 4that I may make it clear, which is how I ought to speak. [5]Walk in wisdom toward outsiders, making the best use of the time6Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person.

[Colossians 4:3-6]

Let us take advantage of 2021 and make the best use of the time for the days are evil. This may be our last chance to see Christ change the world before it is too late!

The Abraham Accords — What You Need to Know

No longer shall your name be called Abram, but your name shall be Abraham, for I have made you the father of a multitude of nations. I will make you exceedingly fruitful, and I will make you into nations, and kings shall come from you.

[Genesis 17:5-6]

On September 15, 2020, leaders from the United States, Israel, Bahrain, and the United Arab Emirates signed an historic peace accord that will begin the normalization of relations between Israel and her surrounding Arab nations. Initiated by President Donald Trump and his administration, The Abraham Accords represent an unprecedented move toward establishing peace in the Middle East.

Now another Muslim-majority nation in North Africa — Morocco — has normalized ties with Israel, and most geopolitical experts believe there will be more Middle Eastern nations to come.

So how did we get here and where are these Abraham Accords going?

How will the Abraham Accords transform the geopolitical landscape of the Middle East, and more importantly, will these unprecedented accords lay the groundwork for what many believe to be the last days and the time of Jacob’s trouble?

To find out, we first must look back before we can understand the way forward. We start by going back 4,000 years to the man known as the “father of faith.”

That is why it depends on faith, in order that the promise may rest on grace and be guaranteed to all his offspring—not only to the adherent of the law but also to the one who shares the faith of Abraham, who is the father of us all.

[Romans 4:16]

Father Abraham

The three most significant monotheistic religions on earth claim Abraham as a patriarch of the faith. Jews, Christians, and Muslims all trace their origins back to the life and witness of father Abraham. Granted, Abraham had many sons, which eventually grew into many great people groups that settled in the ancient Near East.

When Abram was ninety-nine years old, the LORD appeared to him and said, “I am God Almighty. Walk before Me and be blameless. 2I will establish My covenant between Me and you, and I will multiply you exceedingly.” [3]Then Abram fell facedown, and God said to him, 4“As for Me, this is My covenant with you: You will be the father of many nations. 5No longer will you be called Abram, but your name will be Abraham, for I have made you a father of many nations. 6I will make you exceedingly fruitful; I will make nations of you, and kings will descend from you.

[Genesis 17:1-6]

The Covenant

Now the LORD said to Abram, “Go from your country and your kindred and your father’s house to the land that I will show you. 2And I will make of you a great nation, and I will bless you and make your name great, so that you will be a blessing. 3I will bless those who bless you, and him who dishonors you I will curse, and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.”

[Genesis 12:1-3]

The Nation

Abraham did indeed father many nations, but according to the testimony Biblical record — which is the true account of history — the LORD God Almighty only established His covenant of promise with one of Abraham’s descendants. God chose Isaac, not Ishmael, as the son of promise. This is significant because Ishmael’s descendants largely represent the Arab populations of the Middle East, which are now represented as Muslim-majority nations.

Then Abraham fell on his face and laughed and said to himself, “Shall a child be born to a man who is a hundred years old? Shall Sarah, who is ninety years old, bear a child?” 18And Abraham said to God, “Oh that Ishmael might live before you!” 19God said, “No, but Sarah your wife shall bear you a son, and you shall call his name Isaac. I will establish my covenant with him as an everlasting covenant for his offspring after him. 20As for Ishmael, I have heard you; behold, I have blessed him and will make him fruitful and multiply him greatly. He shall father twelve princes, and I will make him into a great nation. 21But I will establish my covenant with Isaac, whom Sarah shall bear to you at this time next year.”

[Genesis 17:17-21]

God’s covenant with Abraham and Isaac was then continued through Isaac’s son, Jacob, the twin brother of Esau [Edom]. The LORD would reaffirm His covent with Jacob by changing His name to Israel — as he would become the father of the 12 tribes of Israel. Esau would later join himself to the tribes of Ishmael becoming perpetual enemies of Israel.

And he said to him, “What is your name?” And he said, “Jacob.” 28Then he said, “Your name shall no longer be called Jacob, but Israel, for you have striven with God and with men, and have prevailed.” 29Then Jacob asked him, “Please tell me your name.” But he said, “Why is it that you ask my name?” And there he blessed him. 

[Genesis 32:27-29]

The Promised Land

God’s covenant with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob [Israel] included some very significant promises. First God promised Israel a land, the boundaries of which were clearly established by the LORD [see Genesis 15:17-21]. This is the Promised Land that was given to Israel after 400 years of bondage in Egypt. As long as Israel loved and obeyed the LORD, He promised to bless and protect and provide for them in the land, but He warned Israel that rebellion and idolatry would result in being expelled from the land.

After you have children and grandchildren and you have been in the land a long time, if you then act corruptly and make an idol of any form—doing evil in the sight of the LORD your God and provoking Him to anger— 26I call heaven and earth as witnesses against you this day that you will quickly perish from the land that you are crossing the Jordan to possess. You will not live long upon it, but will be utterly destroyed. Then the LORD will scatter you among the peoples, and only a few of you will survive among the nations to which the LORD will drive you.

[Deuteronomy 4:25-27]

The people of Israel were indeed expelled from the land in three separate invasions and exiles. The Assyrians exiled the northern kingdom of Israel in 722 B.C. The Babylonians exiled the southern kingdom of Judah in 586 B.C., and the Romans destroyed Jerusalem once again and removed whatever remnant of the Jewish population from the land between 70 and 140 A.D.

Amazingly, just as the Bible predicted, God did not completely destroy His chosen people Israel and after nearly 1900 years of exile, the nation of Israel was reborn in the land against all odds.

But if from there you will seek the LORD your God, you will find Him if you seek Him with all your heart and with all your soul. 30When you are in distress and all these things have happened to you, then in later days you will return to the LORD your God and listen to His voice. 31For the LORD your God is a merciful God; He will not abandon you or destroy you or forget the covenant with your fathers, which He swore to them by oath.

[Deuteronomy 4:29-31]

Of course, the repatriation of the land by the modern state of Israel in 1948 is not the final fulfillment of God’s promise of restoration for Israel. It is, however, a significant prophetic sign of the end of the age that had to be fulfilled in order for God’s prophetic word to be fulfilled in the last days.

The Son of Promise

Now the promises were made to Abraham and to his offspring. It does not say, “And to offsprings,” referring to many, but referring to one, “And to your offspring,” who is Christ. 

[Galatians 3:16]

To be clear, the greatest promise of all to Abraham was the coming of the “seed of the woman,” the promised Messiah and Savior of the world [see Genesis 3:15]. All nations of the earth have been blessed with the free gift of eternal life and the forgiveness of sins through the person and work of Jesus Christ, the son of Abraham, the son of David. This is why Gentile believers all over the world also identify with Abraham as the father of faith.

There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. 29And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s offspring, heirs according to promise.

[Galatians 3:28-29]

Peace in the Middle East

For you yourselves are fully aware that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night. 3While people are saying, “There is peace and security,” then sudden destruction will come upon them as labor pains come upon a pregnant woman, and they will not escape. 4But you are not in darkness, brothers, for that day to surprise you like a thief.

[1 Thessalonians 5:2-4]

So will there ever be peace in the Middle East?

The answer is … yes!

But before true peace can be established by the coming Prince of Peace — Jesus Christ — there must be a time of trouble such as the world has never seen before nor ever will again.

The Abraham Accords, in my estimation, are both good and bad.

It is a noble cause to broker peace among enemies and try to normalize relationships among neighboring nations that historically have lived in hostility. I do believe that these accords can create more opportunities for trade, commerce, diplomacy, and the general welfare of all nations involved.

At the same time, I also can see the Abraham Accords laying the groundwork for the coming “covenant with many” — spoken of by the prophet Daniel — and the coming 10-king alliance that will be used by the coming Antichrist to form his Middle Eastern Beast empire.

In other words, whatever “peace” is established among Israel and her neighbors in these last days will only be a temporary peace, leading to a false sense of security.

Daniel identifies this coming evil ruler in the following way.

And he shall make a strong covenant with many for one week, and for half of the week he shall put an end to sacrifice and offering. And on the wing of abominations shall come one who makes desolate, until the decreed end is poured out on the desolator.

[Daniel 9:27]

For ships of Kittim shall come against him, and he shall be afraid and withdraw, and shall turn back and be enraged and take action against the holy covenant. He shall turn back and pay attention to those who forsake the holy covenant. 31Forces from him shall appear and profane the temple and fortress, and shall take away the regular burnt offering. And they shall set up the abomination that makes desolate. 32He shall seduce with flattery those who violate the covenant, but the people who know their God shall stand firm and take action.

[Daniel 11:30-32]

It is very possible that the Abraham Accords are normalizing relations in the Middle East in order to prime Israel’s neighbors for a future covenant that will set the stage for the emergence of the “little horn” — aka the Beast.

We also know that the Beast will assume power over a ten-king coalition and turn against Israel in the end, leading one final invasion of the holy land and one last exile of God’s people.

“Thus he said: ‘As for the fourth beast,

There shall be a fourth kingdom on earth,
which shall be different from all the kingdoms,
and it shall devour the whole earth,
and trample it down, and break it to pieces.
24As for the ten horns,
out of this kingdom ten kings shall arise,
and another shall arise after them;
he shall be different from the former ones,
and shall put down three kings
.
25He shall speak words against the Most High,
and shall wear out the saints of the Most High,
and shall think to change the times and the law;
and they shall be given into his hand
for a time, times, and half a time.

[Daniel 7:23-25]

And the ten horns that you saw are ten kings who have not yet received royal power, but they are to receive authority as kings for one hour, together with the beast. 13These are of one mind, and they hand over their power and authority to the beast. 14They will make war on the Lamb, and the Lamb will conquer them, for he is Lord of lords and King of kings, and those with him are called and chosen and faithful.”

[Revelation 17:12-14]

The prophetic word has told us the end of the story. It has been written.

These new developments should give us pause to ponder the coming of the great tribulation, pray for the people of Israel and her neighbors, and put our hope in the coming King!

Most of all, as more pieces of the prophetic puzzle fall into place, we must remain unshaken in our resolve and unmovable in our faith in Jesus Christ.

Even so, come quickly Lord Jesus. Come!

The World is Not Worthy of Us

They were stoned, they were sawn in two, they were killed with the sword. They went about in skins of sheep and goats, destitute, afflicted, mistreated—of whom the world was not worthy—wandering about in deserts and mountains, and in dens and caves of the earth.

[Hebrews 11:37-38]

If there is one consistent thread that runs throughout all of church history, it is the thread of suffering for the sake of Christ. From the very first generation of believers who were driven out of Jerusalem leading to the death of the Apostles, the story of God’s people has been the story of martyrdom.

Of all the promises that God has given to the saints, the promise of suffering is the most sobering of all. As followers of Jesus Christ living in the West, the concept of persecution and tribulation is mostly abstract and largely absent from our lives. But for the overwhelming majority of Christians throughout history and among those alive today, the call to follow Jesus Christ is the call to come and die.

The price to follow Jesus Christ in many parts of the world is costly, and the Lord told us as much. The plague of prosperity preaching has infected the church like a cancer, leading millions astray into a pseudo Christianity that does not reflect the true teachings and mission of Jesus Christ.

The truth is that God has not promised to bless His people with riches, comfort, pleasure, and popularity in this life. No! On the contrary, God has promised that all who identify with Jesus Christ and seek to live a godly life will suffer persecution in this world — our rewards being stored in heaven for the day of judgment.

Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted, while evil people and impostors will go on from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived.

[2 Timothy 3:12-13]

Just this week, over 100 farmers — most of them Christians — were slaughtered by the Muslim militants, Boko Haram, in Nigeria. Unfortunately these headlines seem to be more and more common in this evil age. Our brothers and sisters all over the world are being targeted and killed for one reason and one reason alone — faith in Jesus Christ. Whether it be in China, North Korea, Africa or the Middle East, the demonic rage against God’s people is growing more and more intense in these last days.

“If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you. 19If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.20Remember the word that I said to you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will also persecute you. If they kept my word, they will also keep yours. 

[John 15:18-20]

Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice insofar as you share Christ’s sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is revealed.

[1 Peter 4:12-13]

Preparing for the Great Tribulation

Jesus Himself promised His followers that in this world, we will suffer tribulation [John 16:33]. This promise has held true for nearly 2,000 years and seems to only be getting worse. If tribulation and suffering is guaranteed for God’s people of every generation, then it only stands to reason that the last generation of believers will be forced to go through the time of great tribulation as well.

The great tribulation is that unprecedented time of trouble and distress that will encompass the whole earth just prior to the return of Jesus Christ and the Day of the LORD. The Bible makes a distinction concerning this period of immense suffering as being unlike any before or after it. It will be the final 3.5 years of this present, evil age, and God’s people must be prepared to face it and go through it just as every other generation of Christians has gone before us.

Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and put you to death, and you will be hated by all nations for my name’s sake. 10And then many will fall away and betray one another and hate one another. 11And many false prophets will arise and lead many astray. 12And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold. 13But the one who endures to the end will be saved … For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been from the beginning of the world until now, no, and never will be22And if those days had not been cut short, no human being would be saved. But for the sake of the elect those days will be cut short.

[Jesus Christ — Matthew 24:9-13, 21-22]

When he opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been slain for the word of God and for the witness they had borne10They cried out with a loud voice, “O Sovereign Lord, holy and true, how long before you will judge and avenge our blood on those who dwell on the earth?” 11Then they were each given a white robe and told to rest a little longer, until the number of their fellow servants and their brothers should be complete, who were to be killed as they themselves had been.

[Revelation 6:9-11]

And the beast was given a mouth uttering haughty and blasphemous words, and it was allowed to exercise authority for forty-two months6It opened its mouth to utter blasphemies against God, blaspheming his name and his dwelling, that is, those who dwell in heaven. 7Also it was allowed to make war on the saints and to conquer them. And authority was given it over every tribe and people and language and nation, 8and all who dwell on earth will worship it, everyone whose name has not been written before the foundation of the world in the book of life of the Lamb who was slain. 9If anyone has an ear, let him hear:

10If anyone is to be taken captive,
to captivity he goes;
if anyone is to be slain with the sword,
with the sword must he be slain.

Here is a call for the endurance and faith of the saints.

[Revelation 13:5-10]

Despite what many Christians have been taught, the great tribulation will be the most comprehensive and systematic persecution of God’s people the world has ever seen. The great tribulation will reveal the final generation of true witnesses and faithful followers of Jesus Christ and lead to the greatest display of martyrdom in human history. In other words, it is impossible to have the great tribulation without God’s people because the great tribulation is the final refining and testing of God’s people!

As a pastor and preacher of the gospel, it is my obligation and responsibility to prepare the church for what is coming. Anything less would be cruel and cowardly. We must wake up to the reality that the days are evil and the time is at hand. Tribulation is already here for many of our brothers and sisters around the world, and the great tribulation is coming.

We must be ready.

We must remain faithful.

We must endure to the end.

Even so, come quickly Lord Jesus.

How to Rise Above the Coming Hive Mind — Part 1

For false christs and false prophets will arise and perform great signs and wonders, so as to lead astray, if possible, even the elect. See, I have told you beforehand.

[Jesus Christ — Matthew 24:24-25]

Let’s be serious for just a moment. We have reached a pivotal juncture in human history when our rediscovery of technology has finally caught up with our wildest science-fiction fantasies — even exceeding them. The mythos is becoming mainstream. Yesterday’s dream has become today’s reality with no end in sight. No longer must we imagine a day when man would be integrated with machines, uploaded with artificial intelligence and recoded with genetic modification, even pushing the boundaries of what it means to be human.

The next frontier of human “evolution” is here — so they say. Can we overcome the laws and limitations of this present reality and usher in the new age? The new mankind. The quest for immortality. It’s time for the upgrade, and the stage is set.

And yet the irony is that there is nothing new under the sun. What’s been done will be done again. What has been will be. Seems like we have seen this somewhere before.

And the LORD came down to see the city and the tower, which the children of man had built. And the LORD said, “Behold, they are one people, and they have all one language, and this is only the beginning of what they will do. And nothing that they propose to do will now be impossible for them.

[Genesis 11:5-6]

So the next phase in human evolution is to scrap human 1.0 and upgrade to version 2.0. Trans-humanism at it’s core is the ancient, alternative pursuit of mankind to achieve immortality and godhood by reintegrating all knowledge (science) and power (natural and supernatural). This is man’s chance to cheat death and ascend to the heights of the gods. This is man’s moment finally to make the universe in his own image for his own vain glory.

Trans-humanism is the same ancient lie of the devil — Satan — the prince of darkness. He was the first to promise man another path to godhood by seducing Adam and Eve with divine knowledge, supernatural power and perfect beauty. The lie of the enemy has always been to worship and serve that which is created rather than the Creator, who is forever to be praised. The lie of the devil is … be thy own god and do thy own will by any means necessary.

But the serpent said to the woman, “You will not surely die. For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil. 

[Genesis 3:4-5]

The devil says, “I’ll give you what you want now,” all the while knowing he will destroy you in the end. He promises instant gratification that never satisfies but only makes you a slave to sin. When the devil goes down, untold millions are going down with him. His path always leads to one place — destruction.

Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels.’

Matthew 25:41

The Battle for the Mind

The devil is the deceiver of the whole world and the father of lies. So his most effective tactic is to manipulate the mind, keep us blind to the truth and take hold of our thoughts. It only stands to reason that the enemy is using any and every means possible to cast darkness and corrupt the minds of mankind.

On the one hand, we see the exponential advances in technology, science, medicine, artificial intelligence, cybernetics, robotics, quantum physics, virtual and augmented reality, and genetic engineering, which unfortunately are being used for unholy and ungodly purposes. On another front, there is a universal, spiritual deception from the supernatural forces of darkness manipulating mankind through principalities and rulers over the nations, through the power of sorcery [drugs], occult knowledge, black magic, pagan idolatry, sexual immorality, world mystery religions, naturalistic evolution, counterfeit Christianity, eastern mysticism, and new age theosophy.

Don’t forget the collective dependency of the modern world to be fed information through powerful and biased search engines, state/secular education, mainstream and social media outlets, movies, games, and entertainment, and the so-called scientific authorities. There is not a sector of human society that is not under the sway of the evil one.

And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing. In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.

[2 Corinthian 4:3-4]

This collective deception is what I’m calling the hive mind, and its ramifications are tragic for our reality. The world is primed and ready. Only those who are sealed with the Holy Spirit and possess the mind of Christ will be able to resist this mass deception and remain faithful to Jesus Christ and His gospel. God’s faithful remnant will never believe another gospel, whether it comes from the tongue of an angel of light or from the spiritual powers on the other side or an ancient alien from outer space.

There is only one true path to everlasting life and only one way to immortality. There are no original ideas with the devil. God has already promised and provided everything we could ever need, ask or imagine. Jesus Christ was born the Son of God so that we could be born again as sons of God. The Son of God became a man so that the sons of man could become sons of God.

We cannot ignore the mass deception and powerful mind manipulation that is taking place all over the world in these various capacities, and it’s only getting worse. It will be so bad in the end that if it were possible, even God’s elect would be deceived.

Primed for the Hive Mind

Super technologies and the advent of AI present one of the biggest threats to mankind as we know it. Mind-integrated machines are being developed at an exponential rate. We already have an entire generation who has never known the world without being dependent and connected to technology.

Elon Musk [Tesla] is just one of the many tech moguls perfecting mind integration devices that connect our neurons to a 5G network that can send and receive digital messages and turn parts of the brain on or off. Like most new technology, Musk is promoting his Neuralink device initially as a medical miracle-worker, but his intentions go far beyond healing the body. These devices are meant to integrate the mind with machine and propel mankind faster toward the singularity with Artificial Intelligence.

“Musk opened Friday’s event by emphasizing the wide variety of spinal and neurological conditions — including seizures, paralysis, brain damage, and depression — that Neuralink technology could help treat … But it’s worth highlighting that Musk wants Neuralink to do far more than treat specific health conditions. He sees the technology as an opportunity to build a widely available brain-computer interface for consumers, which he thinks could help humans keep pace with increasingly powerful artificial intelligence.”

[Vox, 08/2020 — Read Article Here ]

And then there is the internet of things — iOT — that is the next phase of upgrades will be to augment our own DNA and integrate our minds with the collective “cloud” of information and connect to the hive mind. You can read more about 5G and iOT in one of my earlier posts here.

It is point of perfect harmony and uniformity of a colony to be fully expressing the will and thoughts of the queen bee. It’s just we aren’t dealing with an insect population. We are talking about all of humankind being controlled by the prince of demons — the prince of the power over the air!

And you were dead in the trespasses and sins 2in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience— 3among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind

[Ephesians 2:1-3]

So this virtual network, this internet of things [iOT] is powered and purposed by AI to unlock a new frontier of entertainment, escape, pleasure, creativity, power, knowledge, immortality, and eventually … godhood. Some already are beginning to upload their “cognitive personality” into a virtual data base, attempting to keep oneself “alive” after death in some interactive state of consciousness in the cloud.

Along with the common quest for the acceleration of knowledge and exponential growth of mental processing power (AI), however, technology also creates a two-way bridge, or doorway, to your brain, leaving you susceptible to mind control and behavior modification/manipulation. Anyone who opens themselves up to this technology will be taking the risk of giving themselves over to the powers of darkness and losing their very soul.

As you will see in my next installment [Part 2], the hive mind will be one of the devil’s most powerful weapons of spiritual warfare in these last days to keep the minds of unbelievers blinded from seeing the gospel of Jesus Christ and so be saved.

Jesus Christ Does Not COEXIST

So everyone who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven, but whoever denies me before men, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven. Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I have not come to bring peace, but a sword.

[Jesus Christ — Matthew 10:33-34]

Whether Buddhists or Hindus or Mormons or Muslims — pagans or heathens or atheists or agnostics. They have one thing in common. They neither know, love, nor worship the One True Living God and His Son Jesus Christ. Every cult and false religion and heretical denomination in this world are at odds with the Word and Truth of God — Jesus Christ.

That’s the thing about truth — it is by definition exclusive. For something to be true, it must be at the exclusion of all other options. There can be only one truth — not many. Truth must be objective, not subjective. Otherwise it ceases to be truth. Truth is outside our time domain. It is the standard that by necessity transcends our own vain imaginations, limited knowledge, and biased perspectives. It is immovable, immutable, and infallible. Truth is not defined. It must be discovered.

So that becomes the test. Of all the different belief systems, world religions and so-called “paths” to God, which one is true? Are they all true? Which one conforms to reality? Which one passes the test of authenticity? We have billions of people claiming to have discovered the true way and the enlightened path — even if that path is their own. We have a million ways of looking at God and reality, yet there can only be one true God and one true reality.

That is the absurdity of moral relativism and religious syncretism. In the pursuit of inclusiveness, you cut objective truth off at its legs and replace it with that which is right in your own eyes. You deny the Maker who gave you life and at the same time create a vain god in your own image.

Yet when it comes to the Person, work and teaching of Jesus Christ, we discover a man who claims to be God in the flesh and self-identifies as the Creator and Savior of the whole world. We discover a man who validates His claim through His manifest miracles, wisdom, power, and authority, and ultimately through His glorious resurrection from the dead.

We discover Truth is not just a virtue, it is a Person — embodied in Jesus Christ. He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. Neutrality is not an option. Either He is who He claims to be, or Jesus is a lying religious fraud who was mentally deranged for claiming to be the God of Israel incarnate and the Savior of the whole world.

The implications are paramount.

If Jesus Christ is NOT Lord of all, then at best He is a lying lunatic and at worst a deceitful devil from hell. If He lied about who He is, then why should anything He says ever be trusted? Why would anyone follow a dead charlatan?

Yet if Jesus Christ is who He claims to be, then He is Creator and Lord and therefore has designed all of reality and defined all true morality and has set the terms of eternity and ultimately judges the hearts and intentions of humanity.

His name — the name of Jesus — is ABOVE every name that is named and could not possibly be equal to any other name.

Let it be known to all of you and to all the people of Israel that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead—by him this man is standing before you well. 11This Jesus is the stone that was rejected by you, the builders, which has become the cornerstone. 12And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.

[Acts 4:10-12]

In short — Jesus Christ is not an equal among peers. Jesus isn’t just another religious leader like Buddha or Mohammed or Darwin. He is the Wonderful Counselor, Almighty God, Everlasting Father, and Prince of Peace.

For this reason, I cannot and will not validate or associate with the modern COEXIST movement and mentality because in doing so I am reducing my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ to a status far below His true, eternal nature. Jesus is no mere man, offering one of the many paths to God. He is God, offering the one and only gift of eternal life.

Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, 10so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

[Philippians 2:9-11]

Let’s consider the COEXIST mentality, then. The idea that all faiths can unite for a common cause, putting our obvious differences aside for the common good. This is part of a broader world-wide interfaith movement. On the surface it sounds commendable and progressive, but there is one glaring problem for those who know and love Jesus Christ.

He is the only guest who isn’t invited to the table. Sure, some perverted, compromised version of Jesus has been included, but not the historical Jesus. Not the Biblical Jesus. Not the exclusive Jesus. Not the true Jesus Christ.

This is why it is so dangerous to see mainline Christian denominations and the Roman Catholic Church compromising the true gospel of Jesus Christ in the name of tolerance and the universal brotherhood of man.

Catholic-Muslim Interfaith Council

Does the true Jesus coexist on the same level as other gods and prophets? Does Jesus belong in the same category? Does Jesus stand on equal footing?

According to COEXIST philosophy, He does.

According to Jesus and His gospel, He does not.

So Jesus again said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep. 8All who came before me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not listen to them. 9I am the door. If anyone enters by me, he will be saved and will go in and out and find pasture. 10The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly. 11I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep …

“I told you, and you do not believe. The works that I do in my Father’s name bear witness about me, 26but you do not believe because you are not among my sheep. 27My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. 28I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand. 29My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand. 30I and the Father are one.

[Jesus Christ — John 10:7-11, 25-30]

Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, 26and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?”

[Jesus Christ — John 11:25-26]

Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me … I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you had known me, you would have known my Father also. From now on you do know him and have seen him.

[Jesus Christ — John 14:1, 6-7]

Jesus Christ belongs in a category all by Himself — God of gods, Lord of lords, King of kings, Creator and Judge. He doesn’t coexist alongside other gods. He is highly exalted above everything in all creation!

I ask that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you may know the hope of His calling, the riches of His glorious inheritance in the saints, 19and the surpassing greatness of His power to us who believe. These are in accordance with the working of His mighty strength, 20which He exerted in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly realms, 21far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in the present age but also in the one to come. 22And God put everything under His feet and made Him head over everything for the church, 23which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all

[Ephesians 1:18-22]

I cannot in good faith affirm the COEXIST mantra because Jesus Christ does not affirm it. By affirming COEXIST I am fundamentally denying my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It is contrary to His nature and His gospel. He provides no other option.

Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters.

[Jesus Christ — Matthew 12:30]

Jesus Christ is not a way of life. He is the Way of Life. He isn’t just another religious option. He is the One and Only Son of God and Savior of the World.

He did not come to bring peace but a sword because He will not share His glory with another. All who reject Him and refuse to bow the knee to Him are condemned already and remain under the wrath of a Holy God. Only by exclusively acknowledging Jesus Christ as Lord and believing in Him as Savior can anyone make peace with God and receive the promise of eternal life.

There is no other way, which is why Jesus Christ and His gospel cannot coexist with anything or anyone contrary to Him. For in the end, what does light have to do with darkness.

Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership has righteousness with lawlessness? Or what fellowship has light with darkness?

[2 Corinthians 6:14]

May the name of Jesus Christ forever be exalted to the praise of His glory. Amen!