TOPIC: SIGNS OF THE END TIMES I – Sunday March 25th 2018
Memorise: For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many. Matthew 24:5
Read: Matthew 24:1-13 (KJV)
1 And Jesus went out, and departed from the temple: and his disciples came to him for to shew him the buildings of the temple.
2 And Jesus said unto them, See ye not all these things? verily I say unto you, There shall not be left here one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down.
3 And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?
4 And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you.
5 For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many.
6 And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet.
7 For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places.
8 All these are the beginning of sorrows.
9 Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name's sake.
10 And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another.
11 And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many.
12 And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.
13 But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.
While Jesus sat on the Mount of Olives, His disciples came to Him privately to ask what has now become a recurring question: “What shall be the sign of Your coming, and of the end of the world?” Even scientists today are interested in knowing if and how the world will end. In response to their questions, the Lord tool it upon Himself to outline to anyone who will care to listen, the signs and significant historical events that would herald His second coming and that will eventually lead us to the end of the world.
A diligent study of Matthew 24:4-38 reveals about thirty signs of the end times, and the most prominent of these are the appearance of deceivers and impostors, wars and rumours of wars, famine, earthquakes and natural disasters, the hatred of Christians around the world leading to persecution and martyrdom, many renouncing their faith in Christ, the love of many waxing cold, the rise of many false prophets performing signs and wonders, the sun and moon getting darkened, and people living a carefree life just as it was in the days of Noah.
In the last few decades, we have witnessed the appearance of deceivers and impostors of the Lord Jesus Christ in different parts of the world. Some famous ones have succeeded in leading people astray, even to the point of committing mass suicide. Civil unrest, rumours of war, terrorism and full-scale wars have been constant news items for years now.
The occurrence of earthquakes, hurricanes, tornadoes and other natural disasters have been on the increase in the last few years. It is sad to hear of and witness the unbelievable level of persecution and martyrdom of Christians currently going on in several parts of the world. There has been leaked video footage of Christians being lined up and murdered in parts of Africa and the Middle East. Several governments, including those of the Western world, are now making laws that are hostile to the Christian faith. In some countries, Christians are being pressurized to perform activities that are contrary to their faith. Some Christians have even caved in under pressure to renounce their faith. False prophets in various forms are showing up everywhere on the surface of the earth. They all claim to be representing the Lord Jesus.
Some of them display the gift of revelation and prophecy, even performing convincing miracles. They usually give themselves off as false prophets because their works and lifestyle are not consistent with the image of the Lord Jesus Christ. Despite the abundant evidence that the time of the Lord’s coming is near, most people in the world are still living carefree lives, just as it was in the days of Noah. Unsurprisingly, everything is playing out according to the warning and prophesies of our Lord. Therefore be alert! The trumpet could sound any moment from now. Are you prepared to meet your creator?
Prayer Point: Father, making heaven at last is my goal. Please help me actualise this in Jesus’ Name.
Open Heavens Daily Devotional Lessons was written by Pastor E.A. Adeboye, the General Overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, one of the largest evangelical Church in the world and also the President of Christ the Redeemer's Ministries.