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The Signs of the End Times (2 of 3)

Mike Connell

Summary Notes

I. The Signs of the End Times (Part 2)

1. Global Shifts
· We are living in a time of Global upheaval and change
· Many people feel fearful and anxious about the future
· Two events recent have introduced immense change to the world:
· The 911 attacks and war on Terror, and Two Pandemics: Sars & Covid-19
· In such short space of time nations have changed
· The coming Economic Impact on the nations of the latest pandemic is yet to be seen `

2. God is in Control and Know The Future: The End is Glorious

3. Jesus Revealed Signs to Observe Indicating the End Times
· Jesus rebuked the Religious leaders for knowing the weather signs but not knowing the signs that He was the promised Messiah (Mat.16:1-3)
· Jesus grieved and wept over Jerusalem because they did not recognise and respond to the Day of their Visitation (Lk.19:41-44), and the suffering they would experience as a consequence
· Jesus revealed to his Disciples the Signs to look for: The Temple destruction, and the End Times
· When we look at 2020 we can see many events like Jesus describes in Matt. 24
· Eg. COVID-19, Global Riots, Looming Global Economic Depression, Swarms of Locusts (East Africa and Middle East), Rumours of Wars

4. We Need to be Aware of The Signs of The End times and Prepare
· First Sign: Wars and Natural Disasters
Matt 24:6 - "And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not troubled; for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be famines, pestilences, and earthquakes in various places".

· Ethnic wars, political wars, famines, contagious diseases, earthquakes

Second Sign: Widespread Hatred towards Christians
· Matt 24:9 - "Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and kill you, and you will be hated by all nations for My name's sake".

Third Sign: Widespread Offences among Christians
· Matt 24:10 - "And then many will be offended, will betray one another, and will hate one another".

II. Signs of the End Times (Cont)

1. Fourth Sign: Many False Prophets
Matt 24:11 - "Then many false prophets will rise up and deceive many".
· Three times Jesus warns His disciples against the danger of deception in (Matt.24:5, 11, 24)
· A False Prophet draws people to themselves and not to God and His Word
· Their message will lack the call to Repentance and transformation
· Frequently they draw people by promises that flatter people and are in fact a false hope
· Characteristics of False Prophets

(i) Fail to address the real hurts and issues of people (Jer.16:14)
“Heal lightly” address only external issues instead of addressing the real issues of the heart
Fail to call people to repentance and transformation

(ii) Prophesy “Peace” when there is no peace (Jer.16:14)
Flatter people giving them what they want to hear instead of warning them what lay ahead

(iii) Speak visions from their own heart and not from the Lord (Jer.23:16-17)
Fail to address the issue of people despising the lord and His Word
Refuse to confront sin, and instead promise false hopes for future peace and prosperity

(iv) They present themselves as sheep, but inwardly are ravening wolves (Mat.7:15)
They appear to be genuine believers but have an agenda to take advantage of others
They are identified not by their messages, but by their fruits, & influence on others (Mat.7:19)

(v) They bring in destructive teachings that cause disunity and division (2 Pet.2:1)
Paul’s Warning to Timothy
“Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching.

2Ti 4:3 - "For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables. But you be watchful in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry". (2Tim.4:2-5)

“The time will come” refers to the End Times and the condition of believers and widespread deception
· They will want messages that “feel good” but do not challenge them to change.
· Truth is uncomfortable

(i) “Not endure sound doctrine” - Sound Bible teaching establishes believers in their faith and maturity

(ii) “Have itching ears” - Desiring something pleasant, something that they want to hear, and not something that challenges them to godly living and personal change

(iii) “Turn away their ears from the truth” - Only a having a love for truth keeps us from deception

If we do not cultivate a love for truth, we will turn away from hearing and responding to truth
Itching ears become deaf ears - no transformation

(iv) Turn to fables - Fiction, plausible stories that turn us away from sound Bible truth

· Notice Paul’s Words to Timothy: Watch, Endure, Do the Work, Fulfill your Ministry

2. Fifth Sign: Lawlessness, The Love of Many will Grow Cold

Mat 24:12 - "And because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold".

· “Many”…… this means a multitude of Christians
· “Love”…..refers to the agape Love for God and selfless love for people
· “Lawlessness”……iniquity….from word anomia….without law or restraint, acting independently of laws

· What is Iniquity?
To act without restraint, doing whatever pleases you with no respect for laws/boundaries
To go your own way, doing whatever seems or feels right to you without restraint
To violate the laws of God, to show contempt for the law and for healthy boundaries

· It expresses itself commonly by independence, disrespect for authority, resistance to boundaries, instruction or correction, active or passive rebellion and defiance
· The recent riots, looting, fighting, and destruction, hatred and anger against authorities in USA are examples of the spirit of lawlessness at work

What is the Root Source of Iniquity?
· The root source of all iniquity was Lucifer himself…this was why he fell from heaven (Ezekiel.28:15)
· Iniquity causes people to come under the influence of the spirit realm of darkness and to be manipulated by demons…it is the nature of that kingdom
· When iniquity abounds, the spiritual atmosphere changes.
· Iniquity, people being self-centered and doing their own thing, causes the love of others to grow cold
· What are The Personal Consequence of Iniquity?
· The Revelation of the Kingdom of God is also a revelation of His Authority and Right to Rule
· Iniquity Excludes believers from The Millennial Kingdom Rewards (Mat.7:23)

Mat 7:21 - "Not everyone who says to Me, 'Lord, Lord,' shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, 'Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?' And then I will declare to them, 'I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!'
· When people are unrestrained they cannot fulfill their destiny, and authentic love grows cold

3. Sixth Sign: As it was in The Days of Noah
Luk 17:26 - "And as it was in the days of Noah, so it will be also in the days of the Son of Man"
Luk 17:27 - "They ate, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and the flood came and destroyed them all."

· The account of Noah and his family is found in Gen.6:1-14

What were the conditions that prevailed in the Days of Noah?
(i) Population Explosion
Gen 6:1 - "Now it came to pass, when men began to multiply on the face of the earth, and daughters were born to them"

(ii) Widespread Engagement with the Occult realm
Gen 6:4 - "There were giants on the earth in those days, and also afterward, when the sons of God came in to the daughters of men and they bore children to them. Those were the mighty men who were of old, men of renown.

The Watchers, fallen angels left their God given position and had sexual relations with women, to corrupt and destroy humanity
The Nephilim, “fallen ones” were the offspring of these relationships.
They were giants, distorted creatures who became the Giants of Greek Mythology
A second irruption after the flood caused the giants that occupied the land promised to Abraham

(iii) Widespread Corruption of the Imagination and the Thoughts of the Heart
Gen 6:5 - "Then the LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually."
“Continually” - every day, non stop corruption and desire for evil
The heart is the seat of motivation in life…they were totally corrupt

(iii) Widespread Lawlessness and Violence
Gen 6:11 - "The earth also was corrupt before God, and the earth was filled with violence."
Gen 6:13 - "And God said to Noah, "The end of all flesh has come before Me, for the earth is filled with violence through them; and behold, I will destroy them with the earth."
"Violence" - Injustice, use of force to injure, oppress, abuse, and kill people
Prov.4:17 - "Violence is like wine - it is attractive, intoxicating and removes judgment."

Violence in the earth is increasing….Global Terrorism, Abortion, ethnic and religious wars
Eg. Up to 203 million people killed by wars in 20th Century
Eg. Up to 300 million killed in armed conflicts
Eg. Up to 44 Million Killed by abortion. NZ is one of the 4 top nations in the world per 1000 people

(iv) Widespread Corruption, Sexual Perversion, and Sexual Abuse
Gen 6:11 - "The earth also was corrupt before God, and the earth was filled with violence."
Eg. Today one of the most widespread forms of corruption is sexual slavery
Eg. The estimated number of people in some form of slavery across the world is over 40 million
About 25 million of these people are in some form of sex slavery

(v) Widespread resistance to the Word of God
Heb 11:7 - "By faith Noah, being divinely warned of things not yet seen, moved with godly fear, prepared an ark for the saving of his household, by which he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness which is according to faith."

2Pe 2:4 - "For if God did not spare the angels who sinned, but cast them down to hell and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved for judgment; and did not spare the ancient world, but saved Noah, one of eight people, a preacher of righteousness, bringing in the flood on the world of the ungodly"

Noah preached righteousness for 120 years but people were resistant to his message of impending judgment and the need to repent and walk with God
Only 8 people believed the Word of God and were saved
Noah was warned by God of things never before seen, and commanded to prepare an Ark
No doubt Noah was subject to ridicule for his building an Ark in obedience to the command to prepare

(vi). Total Unawareness of the Impending Global Crisis
Luk 17:27 - "They ate, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and the flood came and destroyed them all."
They continued in their daily activities completely unaware of the impending danger to them
Gen.7:16 - When the rain came it was too late to enter the Ark - The Lord shut him in

4. Seventh Sign: As it was in The Days of Lot
Luk 17:28 - "Likewise as it was also in the days of Lot: They ate, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they built; but on the day that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven and destroyed them all. Even so will it be in the day when the Son of Man is revealed.
· The account of Lot and his family are found in Gen.19:1-13 and Ezekiel.16:49
· What were the conditions that prevailed in the Days of Lot?

Lot dwelt in the City of Sodom. He was daily troubled by the conditions in the city
(i) Brazen open homosexuality
(ii) Aggressive sexual violence
(iii) Hospitality and covenant relationships ignored
(iv) Intergenerational sexual perversion - Old and Young given over to sexual sin
(v) Pride
(vi) Materialism - Fullness of bread, Self-indulgence
(vii) Lack of concern for the poor and needy

· Jesus mentions 8 common activities that occurred both in the days of Noah and the days of Lot
Luk 17:27 - "They ate, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and the flood came and destroyed them all."
Luk 17:28 - "Likewise as it was also in the days of Lot: They ate, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they built;"

· They were so immersed in these activities that they failed to recognize what was about to happen
· Materialism and the cares of life blinded them to eternal realities and they suffered consequences
· Jesus Warning:

Luk 21:34 - "But take heed to yourselves, lest your hearts be weighed down with carousing, drunkenness, and cares of this life, and that Day come on you unexpectedly. For it will come as a snare on all those who dwell on the face of the whole earth. Watch therefore, and pray always that you may be counted worthy to escape all these things that will come to pass, and to stand before the Son of Man."

5. Eighth Sign: The Fig Tree and All the Trees
Luk 21:29 - "Then He spoke to them a parable: "Look at the fig tree, and all the trees. When they are already budding, you see and know for yourselves that summer is now near. So you also, when you see these things happening, know that the kingdom of God is near."

Luk 21:32 - "Assuredly, I say to you, this generation will by no means pass away till all things take place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away."
· “The Fig Tree” refers to the nation of Israel
· “and all the trees” refers to the other nations of the world
· The change in nations will begin with the fig tree…Israel first and then the other nations

Israel Becomes a Nation
· In 1948 Israel became a nation……” it began to bud and form leaves”
· They became free of rule by the British, and established their own history culture and language
· In 1967 Israel took control of Jerusalem. In 2019 Jerusalem was acknowledged as their Capital

The Rise of Nationalism
Across the globe now the nations are beginning to put for the leaves of their own identity
There is an upsurge of nations wanting to establish their own identity, history and culture

Mat. 24:30-32 - "Now learn this parable from the fig tree: When its branch has already become tender and puts forth leaves, you know that summer is near. So you also, when you see all these things, know that it is near—at the doors! Assuredly, I say to you, this generation will by no means pass away till all these things take place."

· Jesus specifically taught that these are the signs of the End Times, and His imminent return
· It is near - at the doors - this generation

6. Ninth Sign: Great Change in the Culture - Selfishness
2Ti 3:1 - "But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power. And from such people turn away!"
· “Perilous times” - fierce, dangerous, reducing strength, hard to bear

7. Tenth Sign: Cosmic Upheaval and Great Global Fear
Luk 21:25 - "And there will be signs in the sun, in the moon, and in the stars; and on the earth distress of nations, with perplexity, the sea and the waves roaring"
Luk 21:26 - "men's hearts failing them from fear and the expectation of those things which are coming on the earth, for the powers of the heavens will be shaken."
Luk 21:27 - "Then they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory."
· There will be great Fear as a result of increasing upheavals in nature

8. Eleventh Sign: Increase in Travel and Knowledge
· Dan 12:4 - "But you, Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book until the time of the end; many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall increase."

9. Twelfth Sign: The Gospel of the Kingdom Preached
· Mat 24:14 - "And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come."
· End time revival …….the Gospel will be preached in all the world….this is the Key Sign
· Gospel of the Kingdom….The message of the Kingdom of God
· Gospel of the Kingdom…..With demonstration of the Supernatural Power of God (1Cor.4:20)
· 2Pe 3:9 - "The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is long suffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance."

III. Prepare for Jesus Return!
1. Jesus will return in great Glory and Power and Majesty
· Mat 16:27 - "For the Son of Man will come in the glory of His Father with His angels, and then He will reward each according to his works."
· Luk 21:27 - "Then they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory."

2. The Day of the Lord will be a Great and Terrible Day (Joel2:11)
· It will be Great for those who have prepared for Jesus return
· It will be Terrible for those who live unprepared

3. We Must Personally Prepare for the Second Coming of The Lord
· Mar 13:32 - "But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father."
· Mar 13:33 - "Take heed, watch and pray; for you do not know when the time is."
· Luk 18:7 - "And shall God not avenge His own elect who cry out day and night to Him, though He bears long with them?"
· Luk 18:8 - "I tell you that He will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes"

Will He really find faith on the earth?"