Category Archives: prophecy

Bucket lists

A lot of people have what they call a bucket list, a list of things they want to accomplish during their lives. If you are a Christian you don’t need to make a bucket list; God has already made one for you.

The Bible tells us that we are saved by God’s grace and not by anything we do.

For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. (Ephesians 2:8,9)

We are not saved by our works but we are saved to do the work that God has assigned us.

For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. (Ephesians 2:10)

In other words, God has prepared for each of us a bucket list of things that he wants us to accomplish during our life.

There have been many times when I have failed to do the work that God has given to me, and I am certain that that is true of others. We need to ask ourselves whether our failure prevents God from accomplishing the work he meant to do through us. The answer to that question is found in the book of Esther. God allowed Esther to become queen of Persia. When an official named Haman plotted to destroy the Jews Esther’s cousin Mordecai told Esther she needed to go to the king and ask for his help. When she expressed fear about doing this, here was what Mordecai said to her.

Do not think to yourself that in the king’s palace you will escape any more than all the other Jews. For if you keep silent at this time, relief and deliverance will rise for the Jews from another place, but you and your father’s house will perish. And who knows whether you have not come to the kingdom for such a time as this? (Esther 4:13,14)

If we fail to do what God wants us to do, that work will be done by someone else, but we will suffer for our failure to obey. In his first letter to the Corinthians, Paul describes what that suffering will consist of.

According to the grace of God given to me, like a skilled master builder I laid a foundation, and someone else is building upon it.

Let each one take care how he builds upon it. For no one can lay a foundation other than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. Now if anyone builds on the foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw— each one’s work will become manifest, for the Day will disclose it, because it will be revealed by fire, and the fire will test what sort of work each one has done. 

If the work that anyone has built on the foundation survives, he will receive a reward. If anyone’s work is burned up, he will suffer loss, though he himself will be saved, but only as through fire. (1 Corinthians 3:10-15)

Our salvation is the result of God’s grace and not the result of anything we do. If we are not faithful in service we won’t lose our salvation, but we will lose the reward we could have gotten.

The end or the beginning?

The last two chapters of the Bible describe the creation of a new heaven and a new earth which will be the home of all whose sins have been forgiven through their faith in Jesus Christ. There will be no more sin or temptation to sin. All that is evil will have been removed.

Some people think of this time as being like retirement. We have finished our work and now we are able to begin living a life of leisure. Nothing can be further from the truth. This is not the end of our service to God but its true beginning.

When God created Adam and Eve he had great plans for their future. We don’t know what those plans were because they ate the fruit that God had forbidden and so brought sin and death into the world. All that has happened since then is God’s efforts to remove these two invaders and restore the creation to what he intended it to be. Once that has been accomplished he will begin to carry out the real purpose for which he created us.

The Last Battle, the last book of the Chronicles of Narnia, ends with the destruction of Narnia and with the followers of Aslan being taken to a new and perfect Narnia.

And for us this is the end of all the stories, and we can truly say that they lived happily ever after. But for them it was only the beginning of the real story. All their life in this world and all their adventures in Narnia had only been the cover and the title page. Now at last they were beginning Chapter One of the Great Story which no one on earth has read, which goes on forever, in which every chapter is better than the one before.

This is an accurate description of what awaits Christians at the end of this age.

If you have not had your sins forgiven through faith in Jesus Christ this is not your future. After death you will be judged for your sins and be sentenced to eternity in the lake of fire. But if you are willing to turn from your sins and believe in Christ you can share in this future. The link below will take you to a site that explains in more detail how you can do this and answers many of the questions you may have on this subject.

Was Jonah a false prophet?

The Bible warns against false prophets.

The prophet who presumes to speak a word in my name that I have not commanded him to speak, or who speaks in the name of other gods, that same prophet shall die. And if you say in your heart, “How may we know the word that the Lord has not spoken?”—when a prophet speaks in the name of the Lord, if the word does not come to pass or come true, that is a word that the Lord has not spoken; the prophet has spoken it presumptuously. You need not be afraid of him.  (Deuteronomy 18:20-22)

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Following Jesus

Here is something I read on Facebook.

Following Jesus

by Joshua Agan

JUST RECENTLY:
At the mayor’s orders, authorities ticketed every car that appeared for a drive-in. They held service using the radio in their cars, and received a $500 fine and court summons (it is unclear if they ticketed each member, or only the drivers). The authorities threatened the pastor with jail time for not complying with a stay-at-home order. Read the rest of this entry

Prophecy is being fulfilled now

The Bible contains many prophecies that have been fulfilled in the past.  It contains many that will be fulfilled in the future.  But there is one which is in the process of fulfillment right now.

The hand of the LORD was upon me, and he brought me out in the Spirit of the LORD and set me down in the middle of the valley; it was full of bones. And he led me around among them, and behold, there were very many on the surface of the valley, and behold, they were very dry. And he said to me, “Son of man, can these bones live?”

And I answered, “O Lord GOD, you know.”

Then he said to me, “Prophesy over these bones, and say to them, O dry bones, hear the word of the LORD. Thus says the Lord GOD to these bones: Behold, I will cause breath to enter you, and you shall live.And I will lay sinews upon you, and will cause flesh to come upon you, and cover you with skin, and put breath in you, and you shall live, and you shall know that I am the LORD.”  (Ezekiel 37:1-6)

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Past or future?

The book of Revelation can be hard to understand and there are a lot of interpretations of it.  One area of disagreement is whether some parts of it have been fulfilled already or whether all of it still lies in the future.  The answer to this question can be found within the book itself. Read the rest of this entry

A hymn about the Second Coming

We sing Christmas carols to celebrate the birth of Jesus.  At Easter we sing songs about his resurrection.  Some time in the future Jesus will return to Earth as ruler and usher in a thousand years of peace and prosperity.  Isn’t that worth singing about too?  But it seems that there are very few songs about this subject.

Actually there is a very famous song that celebrates Christ’s return.  It is called Joy to the World.  But isn’t Joy to the World a Christmas carol?  It is usually sung during the Christmas season.  Perhaps we should examine it a little more closely. Read the rest of this entry

The Virgin Mary

When people speak of Mary, the mother of Jesus, they often refer to her as the Virgin Mary.  Is this designation accurate?  She was certainly a virgin when Jesus was born.

When Joseph woke from sleep, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded him: he took his wife,but knew her not until she had given birth to a son. And he called his name Jesus.  (Matthew 1:24,25)

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Jesus and his brothers

Jesus said, “A prophet is not without honor except in his hometown and in his own household.”  That was certainly true of Jesus.  His mother Mary honored him because the angel Gabriel had foretold his birth and he had been born while she was still a virgin.  Joseph honored him because after he discovered that Mary was pregnant an angel appeared to him in a dream to tell him that Jesus had been conceived by the Holy Spirit and that he would save his people from their sins.  But after he was born Joseph and Mary had other children.  There were four boys named James, Joseph, Simon, and Judas, and an unspecified number of girls.  These children had not received the divine revelations their parents had and they thought that Jesus was just an ordinary person like them. Read the rest of this entry

Dry bones

The hand of the LORD was upon me, and he brought me out in the Spirit of the LORD and set me down in the middle of the valley; it was full of bones. And he led me around among them, and behold, there were very many on the surface of the valley, and behold, they were very dry.

And he said to me, “Son of man, can these bones live?” And I answered, “O LORD GOD, you know.”

Then he said to me, “Prophesy over these bones, and say to them, O dry bones, hear the word of the LORD. Thus says the LORD GOD to these bones: Behold, I will cause breath to enter you, and you shall live. And I will lay sinews upon you, and will cause flesh to come upon you, and cover you with skin, and put breath in you, and you shall live, and you shall know that I am the Lord.”

So I prophesied as I was commanded. And as I prophesied, there was a sound, and behold, a rattling, and the bones came together, bone to its bone.And I looked, and behold, there were sinews on them, and flesh had come upon them, and skin had covered them. But there was no breath in them.  (Ezekiel 37:1-8)

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Rapture Forums

Nearly one third of the Bible consists of prophecies.  Some of these prophesies have been fulfilled while some will be fulfilled in the future.  You would think that people who believe the Bible and read it regularly would be well informed on this subject.  That isn’t always the case because many prophecies are hard to understand and there are a lot of conflicting ideas about what they mean.  If you have a hard time understanding this subject you might be able to find help at this site:  raptureforums.comRead the rest of this entry

On earth as it is in Heaven

Matthew 6:9-13 contains the prayer known as the Lord’s Prayer.  It contains the phrase “Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.”  Is this part of the prayer being answered today?  It appears to me that most of the earth is rebelling against God’s will rather than following it.

The Bible tells us that God created the world and everything in it in six days and we should acknowledge him as our Creator.  Humans have come up with the belief that the earth developed by natural processes over billions of years and that life arose by a process of evolution.  This belief is such an integral part of our culture that even many Bible believers accept it and interpret the Bible in a way that accommodates the belief that the earth is old.  I once believed in an old earth and reconciled this belief with the Bible by believing in the gap theory. Read the rest of this entry

Promises delayed

The Israelites spent 400 years in Egypt.  They were invited to settle in Egypt to escape the famine in their own land.  At first they were honored guests but that status changed.

Now there arose a new king over Egypt, who did not know Joseph. And he said to his people, “Behold, the people of Israel are too many and too mighty for us. Come, let us deal shrewdly with them, lest they multiply, and, if war breaks out, they join our enemies and fight against us and escape from the land.” 

Therefore they set taskmasters over them to afflict them with heavy burdens. They built for Pharaoh store cities, Pithom and Raamses.  (Exodus 1:8-11)

The people prayed to God for freedom from their bondage and God chose Moses to answer their prayers.

Then the Lord said, “I have surely seen the affliction of my people who are in Egypt and have heard their cry because of their taskmasters. I know their sufferings, and I have come down to deliver them out of the hand of the Egyptians and to bring them up out of that land to a good and broad land, a land flowing with milk and honey, to the place of the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Amorites, the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites. And now, behold, the cry of the people of Israel has come to me, and I have also seen the oppression with which the Egyptians oppress them. Come, I will send you to Pharaoh that you may bring my people, the children of Israel, out of Egypt.”   (Exodus 3:7-10)
 

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The church and Daniel’s 70 week prophecy

Concerning this salvation, the prophets who prophesied about the grace that was to be yours searched and inquired carefully, inquiring what person or time the Spirit of Christ in them was indicating when he predicted the sufferings of Christ and the subsequent glories.  (1 Peter 1:10,11)

The Old Testament prophets tell us of the suffering Christ experienced when he was crucified; they tell us of the glory associeated with his rule over the earth during the Millennium.  But what do they say about the time between these two events, the time in which we are living now?  The answer is: not much.  In fact they say nothing about the most important aspect of this era, the formation of the church.  The apostle Paul was given the task of revealing this truth to us.

When you read this, you can perceive my insight into the mystery of Christ, which was not made known to the sons of men in other generations as it has now been revealed to his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit. This mystery is that the Gentiles are fellow heirs, members of the same body, and partakers of the promise in Christ Jesus through the gospel.  (Ephesians 3:4-6)

The Old Testament teaches that Gentiles will be saved; it never tells of the formation of a new body composed of both Jews and Gentiles.  Paul not only teaches us about this body but he also tells how it will be removed from the earth through the event known as the rapture. Read the rest of this entry

True and false prophets

There are a lot of people who claim to be prophets who speak for God.  The Bible warns us that many of them are not true prophets and we are not to listen to them.  But how can you tell who really is a prophet and who isn’t?  The Bible answers this question.

And if you say in your heart, “How may we know the word that the Lord has not spoken?”— when a prophet speaks in the name of the Lord, if the word does not come to pass or come true, that is a word that the Lord has not spoken; the prophet has spoken it presumptuously. You need not be afraid of him.  (Deuteronomy 18:21-22)

God sent Jonah to prophesy to the people of Nineveh.

Jonah began to go into the city, going a day’s journey. And he called out, “Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown!” (Jonah 3:4)

This is how the Ninevites responded.

And the people of Nineveh believed God. They called for a fast and put on sackcloth, from the greatest of them to the least of them.

The word reached the king of Nineveh, and he arose from his throne, removed his robe, covered himself with sackcloth, and sat in ashes. And he issued a proclamation and published through Nineveh, “By the decree of the king and his nobles: Let neither man nor beast, herd nor flock, taste anything. Let them not feed or drink water, but let man and beast be covered with sackcloth, and let them call out mightily to God. Let everyone turn from his evil way and from the violence that is in his hands. Who knows? God may turn and relent and turn from his fierce anger, so that we may not perish.”

When God saw what they did, how they turned from their evil way, God relented of the disaster that he had said he would do to them, and he did not do it. (Jonah 3:5-10)

Jonah said Nineveh would be destroyed in forty days and it didn’t happen.  Does this mean that Jonah was a false prophet? Read the rest of this entry

Fire from Heaven

The Bible foretells the coming of a ruler known as the beast.  Satan will give him power and the people of the earth will worship him.

And I saw a beast rising out of the sea, with ten horns and seven heads, with ten diadems on its horns and blasphemous names on its heads. And the beast that I saw was like a leopard; its feet were like a bear’s, and its mouth was like a lion’s mouth.

And to it the dragon gave his power and his throne and great authority. One of its heads seemed to have a mortal wound, but its mortal wound was healed, and the whole earth marveled as they followed the beast. And they worshiped the dragon, for he had given his authority to the beast, and they worshiped the beast, saying, “Who is like the beast, and who can fight against it?”
Revelation 13:1-4

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Post-apocalyptic fiction or post-apocalyptic fact

There is a literary genre called post-apocalyptic fiction.  It depicts a future in which civilization has been destroyed by a war or some other catastrophe and the survivors are attempting to cope with the changed environment.  Most people have heard of post-apocalyptic fiction but not many realize there is also a class of literature that is post-apocalyptic fact.

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What Jesus didn’t know

When God appeared to Moses in the burning bush he revealed his name to him.

Then Moses said to God, “If I come to the people of Israel and say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ and they ask me, ‘What is his name?’ what shall I say to them?”

God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM.” And he said, “Say this to the people of Israel, ‘I AM has sent me to you.’” God also said to Moses, “Say this to the people of Israel, ‘The LORD, the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you.’ This is my name forever, and thus I am to be remembered throughout all generations.”
Exodus 3:13-15

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The sons of Abraham

Moses was a descendant of Abraham.  He gave the world the Torah, which he said was based on revelations given to him by God.  Judaism is based on the teachings contained in this book.

Muhammad was a descendant of Abraham.  He gave the world the Koran, which he said was based on revelations given to him by God.  Islam is based on the teachings contained in this book.

The similarities between these two aren’t just a coincidence.

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666 and RFID chips

Alexander Pope wrote:

A little learning is a dangerous thing;
Drink deep or taste not the Pierian spring.
There shallow draughts intoxicate the brain,
And drinking largely sobers us again.

(In Greek mythology the Pierian spring was a fountain which was sacred to the Muses and imparted learning to anyone who drank from it.)

There are times when having just a little learning about what the Bible says can be a dangerous thing.

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