That’s All Folks
On Sunday night at THE FOUNDRY, we talked about the triumphal entry of Christ into Jerusalem, which took place only five days before He would die on the cross to save us from our sins. He rode into Jerusalem riding on a donkey. Back then, when kings were proclaiming peace, they entered towns on donkeys.
(see 1 Kings 1:32-38)
When kings are coming in war, proclaiming their dominion over an area, they show up on horses. Creatures they used for war.
In Revelation 19:11-16, Jesus is entering into this world. He is riding on a horse, proclaiming His dominion over it.
We talked about the return of Jesus a lot.
He is coming back!
He told His disciples that it would be like a thief in the night. UNEXPECTED.
We won’t know when it is going to happen, but there are things that we can watch to discern the times.
There are also things we can do to prepare for His return.
Lets look at some of the things we can watch for to know about the approach of His return.
in Daniel 9, an angel comes to Daniel and gives him a prophecy. He tells him that from the time the decree is made to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem (happened in Nehemiah 1:6) there would be 69 weeks.
In looking at this, it doesn’t make sense for these to be literal weeks (a little bit less than a year and a half)
However, if we look at these 69 weeks as sets of seven years, that adds up to 483 years. Daniel prophecied the exact date that Jesus would enter into Jerusalem.
This leaves one of those sets of seven years left. The 70th week.
At the end of Daniel 9, the prophecy ends with the description of that final week.
Daniel 9:27 “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, untill the decreed end is poured out on the desolator.”
That verse is probably the shortest possible description of the book of Revelation.
For seven years, the antichrist will rule the earth. For 3.5 years, there will be a peace treaty, and halfway through that peace treaty, the antichrist will set himself up to be god in the holy of holies in the temple.
Israel then realizes who he is and flees. He declares war on them, and so on and so forth, but in the end, God wins!
We are in between the 69th week and the 70th. The 69 weeks ended when Jesus rode into Jerusalem on the donkey, and the 70th week begins the great tribulation, and will end when Jesus comes again, riding on the white horse.
We don’t know when that last seven years will take place. Nobody does except for God, and I’m not going to try and guess it, or tell you that I do.
However, Jesus does give us some help of signs that will happen before that takes place.
In Mark 13, Jesus is talking with some of His disciples. In verse 10, He says “And the gospel must first be proclaimed to all nations.”
That is one thing that we are still waiting on. It does not mean that the moment the gospel makes it to that last nation, things will happen, but it is just something that has to happen first.
In Matthew 24, Jesus is explaining the signs of the end of the times to some of His disciples, and He tells them that there will be wars and rumors of wars. There will be famines, and earthquakes, and that is just the beginning. Many false prophets will arise. A lot of this is already happening. Think about all the wars going on in the middle east. Think about all of the earth quakes and natural disasters that we hear about, or experience on a regular basis!
Jesus uses the analogy of a tree in Matthew 24:32-35. He says that we know summer is coming becasue of what the tree is doing, and in the same way, if we watch the world, we can know when the end will be getting closer.
Matthew 24:44, “Therefore you also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour when you do not expect.”
We must be ready. How do we do that? Jesus goes on after that verse, talking about the wise servant, who is serving his master and prepared for his master’s return.
The ways that we prepare are by obeying Christ. Abiding in Christ.
Christ told us in Matthew 28, and in Acts 1, to go and preach the Gospel, to everyone.
Paul and the other writers of the New Testament epistles continue this thought beyond just preaching the gospel into living it out.
One of my favorite passages is in Galatians 5:22-26, where Paul gives the fruit of the Spirit.
Just like we can watch trees to know what season it is, and watch the world to see where we’re at, we can watch our lives to see where we stand Spiritually. The fruit that we have, whether it pertains to the list of the fruit of the Spirit, or the works of the flesh seen before the fruit of the Spirit, will give us a great picture of where we are Spiritually.
1 Peter 4:7, “The end of all things is at hand; therefore be self controlled and sober minded for the sake of your prayers.”
BE READY for Jesus to come back!!! Stand FIRM!!
I’ve talked a lot now.
Everything I’ve said can go right in one ear and out the other. You can get up and walk away from your computer, and not do a single thing about it.
But is that the best thing to do?
Reader, I challenge you here to examine yourself. 1 Thessalonians 4:3 tells us that God’s will for our lives is to be sanctified, to be set apart. to be DIFFERENT from the world!
We can do that in His power.
Before you stop reading, and disregard everything I’ve said, do one thing for me. Examine your heart. Examine the fruit in your lives.
Are you living entirely as God calls you to?
What needs to change?
What are you going to do to make that change?
My prayers go out to those of you who have read this, whether you read the first line alone, or made it all the way down to the end. May God pour out His grace on you, and reveal Himself to you more every day.