“…What will be the sign of your coming, and of the end of the age?” (Matthew 24:3)
The apostles probably where thinking of having Jesus speaking about the end of the Roman Empire and the victory by the Jews on the Romans with the assurance of the Jewish empire or the Kingdom of Israel.
“beginning of sorrows” and “the end is not yet”.
Now that word “sorrows” in the original language meant “birth pangs”, the pain in childbirth. Now birth pangs speak of frequency and intensity. And as a woman gets nearer the birth, the “pangs” become more frequent and intense. This is true also for the signs of the end times.
Though we may think these signs began already not long after Jesus’ day, but we should know that Jesus warned that the end would not yet be, because this was just the beginning of sorrows. But throughout history we have seen the “pangs” (signs) become more frequent and intense, culminating in the day we live in now where the pangs are so frequent and intense that we must be right at the time of “delivery”, when Jesus is to return. So don’t let anyone fool you into believing that the signs today are just the beginning of sorrows and the end is not yet.
Bible prophecy is of vital importance to those who have confessed their belief in the
“things concerning the kingdom of God, and the name of Jesus Christ”
at their baptism. Such a belief requires an acceptance that since creation and the Garden of Eden God has a Plan, which He made known by His Word and the prophesies brought forward by His chosen men. Those Bible prophecies which are direct messages from God given to:
- Reveal the true God, and that He is in control
- Reveal the future
- Explain the present
- Encourage faith and motivate witness
- Identify where believers are in God’s time scale
- Convince those whom God is calling
- Confirm the truth of God’s Word the Scriptures
(Deut. 18:20-22; Isa. 43:9-12; 48:3-8; Jer. 28; Dan. 2:20-22,28,31-45; Jude vv. 14,15; Rev. 4:1)
The religious leaders of Israel did not recognise Jesus as the promised Messiah, and he condemned the Pharisees and Sadducees for being unable to “discern the signs of the times” (Mt. 16:1-4). They wanted a sign (miracle) that would show conclusively that Jesus was the Son of God. They were blind to the signs that abounded, and were not able to accept the sign of their generation, the death and resurrection of Jesus, the greatest sign heaven could give. The birth, ministry, trial, death and resurrection of our Lord all fulfilled prophecy, and Jesus instructed his disciples in these.
(Mt. 2:1-6; Mk. 1:1-3; Mt. 21:1-9; Jno. 1:37-51; Mk. 7:6; Jno. 19:24,28,36,37; Lk. 24:25-27,44-47)
Also today there are people who laugh at those who come to warn others concerning difficult times to come. Like the apostle Perter warned we can find lots of scoffers who will do every wrong they can think of, and laugh at the truth. Though we may be sure that this generation has seen some tremendous signs come to pass which should be some sign for us to be alert.
Jesus told his apostles that
“this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.” (Matthew 24:14)
Today we can find all over the world serious Bible students and followers of Jesus who proclaim the Good News of the coming Kingdom of God. All over the world followers of Christ are eager to let others know what goods can come to them.
Today we also can see how certain prophecies for the future times have come true, like the children reacting negatively against their parents. We also can see how nations are rising against other nations, and kingdoms against kingdoms. At the same time we have seen a huge increase of natural disasters. Like Jesus warned that there would be earthquakes in various places, and there will be famines and troubles.
“These are the beginnings of sorrows.” (Mark 13:7-8)
We must be on our guard to ensure that we are not ensnared by the things of this life, which will cause us to be blind to the hand of God at work and leave us unprepared for the coming of the Master.
Disregarding prophecy or listening to false prophets will have disastrous consequences.
(Lk. 21:34-36; 1 Thess. 5:1-4; 2 Pet. 3:11,12; Mt. 7:15-23)
We do know that coming closer to the end there will be men posing as Jesus trying to deceive people in the last days. Around the century we had several of such Jesus imposters, of which the most successful was Mr. Moon who build up a lot of followers. It’s in the Bible,
“At that time if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Christ!’ or ‘There He is!’ do not believe it. For false Christ’s and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and miracles to deceive even the elect—if that were possible.” (Matthew 24:23-24)
Not only will there be imposters. There also shall be lots of people who shall try to get believers away from their faith. Also the moral conditions shall deteriorate. The Bible tells us
“But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God—having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with them.” (2 Timothy 3:1-5, NIV.)
Look around you. See what for sort people are living in this world. See also how nations will be in anguish and perplexity and how people shall misuse their power. Also look at the terror which is taking place. Consider what the prophet Daniel knew to say about future days:
“There will be signs in the sun, moon, and stars. On the earth, nations will be in anguish and perplexity at the roaring and tossing of the sea. Men will faint from terror, apprehensive of what is coming on the world, for the heavenly bodies will be shaken.” (Luke 21:25-26, NIV)
Though nobody, even Jesus not, does know about the moment that Jesus would return or when the Last Days would take place. But in the bible we can find that there is in several places spoken about certain signs. In the Scriptures we can learn that talk of peace and safety are also a sign of the last days. It’s in the Bible,
“For you know very well that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night. While people are saying, ‘Peace and safety,’ destruction will come on them suddenly, as labor pains on a pregnant woman, and they will not escape.” (1 Thessalonians 5:2-3, NIV)
Not knowing the day we should still prepare ourselves. Making sure we shall be strong enough to endure the many difficulties.
“So be prepared, for you don’t know what day your Lord is coming. Just as a man can prevent trouble from thieves by keeping watch for them, so you can avoid trouble by always being ready for My unannounced return.” (Matthew 24:42-44 TLB)
Jesus tells his followers. In the many parables he told he also gives warnings and guidance how to prepare for the moment to come. Therefore we also best listen to what he has to reveal about those coming times and how we should prepare ourselves for the coming Kingdom of God.
- Let us being filled each day by the Word of God
- Not about personal salvation but about a bigger Plan
- God’s Plan, Purpose and teachings
- Seeds, weeds and kingdoms
- How can we prepare for the Kingdom of God
- Signs of the Last Days
- For those Christians who say they are the Victim
- Responses to Radical Muslims and Radical Christians
- Devotees and spotters
- Christians at War? Christians using violence?
- The Rapture Wars
- Jesus … will come in the same way as you saw him go
- Coming together in dark days
- Prophecy: First the Bad News.
- Introduction to the Gospel of the Kingdom
- My dream of Jesus and the candles
- Sign of the Times
- End Time Events are Happening
- The Great ‘Day Of The Lord’
- Watchful in Hope (Pt 1–Mark 13:1-13)
- Understanding The Times – Do You Know What Time It Is?
- The Antichrist!
- Disguised As Ministers Of The Gospel
- What Price are You Willing to Pay for Convenience and Security?
- Listening to the Lord’s Voice Is Crucial to Welcoming Jesus’ Second Coming
- How Will One Recognize The Antichrist?
- After Babylon Falls
- Last Days Deception
- Are You Walking In Darkness Or Are You Walking In Light