Are We Living in the Last Days?
A local news program here in Oklahoma recently accused our organization of scaring people with a doomsday message in order to win their financial backing. Ironically, their report was filled with dozens of violent and ghoulish images—an agonizing two-headed man, burning angels, horn-headed demons, the Grim Reaper, medieval monsters, skeleton warriors, mushroom clouds, exploding globes, “the end is near” signposts—all of this mixed together with every imaginable religious-looking image, none of which we supplied to the station. Blaring in the background of this horror-movie montage was the most hideous, shrieking noise I’ve ever heard.
These scaremongering tactics, employed during November sweeps in a shameless attempt to get higher ratings, only confirm that the news program is guilty of the very crime they accuse us of—scaring people to make money.
Never in our 15 years of producing more than 500 episodes for the Key of David program or 19 years of distributing nearly 200 issues of the Trumpet magazine have we resorted to such vulgar attempts to lure an audience to our program or publication.
We do, however, analyze and describe this world as it is—and as God correctly prophesied it would be thousands of years ago—an evil, sin-sick world lying prostrate on its deathbed, gasping for its last breath.
That isreality! But it’s no scare tactic. It’s actually a warning message motivated purely by God’s great love for mankind—and one, as we will see, that is filled with hope!
The report mentioned above was neither. It was merely sensationalism masquerading as responsible journalism—and a blatant attempt to mock God and to scoff at His prophecies.
There was a time when a “last days” message might have been lumped in with the doomsday warnings of some wild-eyed fanatic shouting from a soapbox on a street corner. But with prominent economists, scientists, politicians and commentators now issuing grave warnings about the present course of world events, those days are clearly over.
The other night, I heard a popular radio show host encourage millions of listeners to purchase firearms because of the dangerous times we are living in. And the alarmist warning seems to be resonating with many Americans. This report suggests that gun sales have risen by as much as 50 percent since the election of Barack Obama.
Do you get the sense that some people—many people, perhaps—might be gravely concerned about the days in which we live?
Remember how close we were to economic Armageddon in mid-September? “The nation is gripped by the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression,” the New York Timeswrote at the time. The American financial system “was sliding from grim toward potentially apocalyptic,” it warned.
Remember the meeting congressional leaders had with Henry Paulson when the credit crisis was about to boil over? The Times said congressional leaders sat in “stunned silence” while listening to the shocking assessment. According to Sen. Christopher Dodd, congressional leaders were told “that we’re literally maybe days away from a complete meltdown of our financial system” (emphasis mine throughout).
The New York Post followed up that shocker with the scary details, saying the market on September 18 was just “500 trades away from Armageddon.” If not for quick action by the Fed and the Treasury, the Post reported, “the Dow could have collapsed to the 8,300-level.” As it was, with the Fed artificially pumping it up, the market held steady around 11,000.
Yesterday, the Dow closed at 8,376.
Regarding the American elections in November, as we noted here, Thomas Sowell, a black conservative author and senior fellow at the Hoover Institution, said this about the reality of a radical leftist administration occupying the White House: “There is such a thing as a point of no return. If, in those first two years, Iran gets nuclear weapons, we will be at that point of no return.”
Even now, without a bomb, Iran almost daily reminds us that we are living in a very different world than it was even 15 or 20 years ago. As Caroline Glick wrote in the Jerusalem Post recently,
Iran daily threatens to destroy the U.S., annihilate Israel, close the Straits of Hormuz, use nuclear weapons and proliferate nuclear weapons to other states. It controls Syria, Lebanon and Gaza. It is the primary sponsor of the insurgency in Iraq and, with Pakistan, the major sponsor of the insurgency in Afghanistan. It has cultivated strategic ties with U.S. foes in the Western Hemisphere like Venezuela, Nicaragua and Ecuador.
Yet one of the first foreign-policy initiatives promised by the incoming Obama administration is to attempt to diplomatically engage Iran with the aim of striking a grand bargain with the mullahs.
Do you get the sense that some people—perhaps many—see the extreme danger ahead if we fail to alter our course? “Unless something changes soon,” Glick concluded, “the consequences of the jihadist-multicultural alliance will be suffered by millions and millions of people.”
Are these scare tactics—or an accurate description of our real world?
What about the appalling breakdown of family life in the West—particularly the United States, Britain and Israel? In this post, Melanie Phillips describes how she has been warning repeatedly over the past 20 years about the “fragmentation of family life,” how mass fatherlessness has created “deserts of depravity and highly damaged children” who are now “damaged parents,” and “that the collapse of social and moral controls” would destroy “the most fundamental values of civilized behavior.”
As for Britain today, Phillips concludes, “The truth is that it is all far, far too late. Britain has simply undone the fabric of civilized life.”
Civilized life completely unraveled? An apocalyptic meltdown in our financial system? Passing the point of no return with the number-one state sponsor of terror? These are not kooky ramblings from wild-eyed fanatics. They are serious and sober warnings coming from prominent leaders and news outlets around the world.
Similar warnings are recorded within the pages of the Holy Bible. Take 2 Timothy 3:1, for example. The Apostle Paul wrote, “This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.” Paul, having been brought up in a Hebrew household as a boy, was very familiar with the way world conditions would be in the end time. Notice how he described the last days: “For men will be selfish, fond of money, boastful, haughty, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, irreverent, callous, relentless, scurrilous, dissolute, and savage; they will hate goodness, they will be treacherous, reckless and conceited, preferring pleasure to God” (verses 2-4, Moffatt translation).
This is obviously a prophecy for the last days. And it’s describing world conditions that simply could not have been applied to an America of 100 years ago—or even 50. But it’s uncanny how accurate the description fits today’s world.
What about Jesus Christ’s warning? While on the Mount of Olives, His disciples asked, “[W]hat shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?” (Matthew 24:3). The disciples too were intensely interested in what world conditions would be like at the time of the end—yes, the end of this world!
Jesus goes on to describe, not the permanent end of Earth’s existence, but rather the end of this age—the world as we know it to be, ruled by Satan (2 Corinthians 4:4; Galatians 4:4). “For then shall be great tribulation,” Jesus said, “such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be” (Matthew 24:21).
Nothing would compare to it historically, Jesus told us. Yet, even though coming from Christ’s own mouth, and with evidence piling higher that world conditions are worsening daily—perverse immorality, family breakdown, division from within, nation against nation, terrorism striking fear and consternation within the hearts of men—many still cannot accept that all this will ultimately result in great tribulation.
Yet God, in an abundant display of His great mercy and love, continues warning mankind of what is about to explode over all the Earth in the days just ahead of us. And even in this, man’s darkest hour, God’s charge is for us to lift up our heads with hope! Christ said that in Luke 21, right after describing the imminent end of this age: “Men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken” (verse 26). Yes, we are absolutely near the time of unprecedented suffering that is to come upon all the world. Even the more astute commentators are beginning to see the outer edges of the oncoming storm.
We are, in fact, living in the very last days!
But what most commentators do not see is that these dark days will usher in the return of Jesus Christ to this Earth and the dawn of a new age! “And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory” (verse 27). As promised in hundreds of prophecies throughout the Holy Bible, Jesus Christ is about to return to this Earth to establish the world-ruling Kingdom of God.
We are destined, as no generation has been before us, to live in two different worlds!
Are you preparing now for the dawn of this new world—putting God first in all that you say and do, striving against fleshly pulls to live the joyous way that the Prophet Isaiah said would soon spread over all the Earth even as the waters cover the sea?