Recently, I was listening to tapes and reading Scripture when I suddenly became engrossed on one particular verse. It was like a revelation and I was astonished how it seemed to confirm a possible prophecy I had outlined to you in Monarchs of Destiny-Elizabeth II. I wasn’t certain of my ground then, in fact, I had employed a question mark in my interpretation. Yet, after reading this verse, I feel so much more convinced that we are at the very door to that time when Jesus Christ will return. So, my friends, I want to share this finding with you that it may serve as a point of inspiration to Scripture passages that light up your studies. Yet, it is critical that first we look at the importance God places on His prophetic message and what He expects of us as we study His Word.
The final words of Amos 4: 12 say, “Prepare to meet thy God, O Israel.” These words should bring shivers up and down the spines of Israelites everywhere, because Amos, whose very name means “Burden”, was given a prophetic message of warning & judgment. What every one of us must appreciate is that his words represent a dual fulfillment, one that was related to the situation in his day, that’s true, but they are equally applicable to our present world. The warning of judgment in Amos’ time encompassed many of the surrounding nations that were fierce enemies of Israel, including the descendants of Esau Edom, who have us very much in their control today. Yet, it is a warning to these same nations today, whatever they are called and wherever they live.
Still, we Israelites should not be too smug in the thought that judgment is just going to come upon our enemies in this double fulfillment. Because, just as it occurred in Amos’ time, the Israel nations have also been very much singled out for further judgment in these last days. You might speculate that this should be no surprise since a simple reading of the curses of Deuteronomy 28 reflects an already heavy burden that we have brought against ourselves because of our transgressions. And that’s true! Yet, it appears the worst is yet to come. In Old Testament times, warning after warning after warning failed to deter the early Israelites from their path of destruction. Nevertheless, there were prophets in those days with the tremendous courage to sound the alarm. We’re not that lucky today! Our church leaders, our preachers and the televangelists, who are the influential voices of today, are so caught up in this new reality of a convoluted and milk-toast form of Christianity that we have fallen so far from the truth that the average Israelite goes through life with a closed mind. And when they do hear the truth, perhaps from an identity pastor, it is rarely believed and the messenger is usually seen as eccentric.
1 Thessalonians Chapter 4: 14-17 describes how the Lord will descend from Heaven and gather the dead and living in Christ to Him. Ironically, no matter how often it is brought up in church or in meetings, sooner or later, the comment, “Nobody knows the time or date” will come up, or, maybe something like, “It doesn’t matter, I’m just trying to live my life in accordance with God’s wishes and while I would like to see Him come, I’ll just leave it to God, it’s not important to me at this stage.” Yet, notwithstanding how often these statements are made, indifference is not what the Bible teaches.
1 Thessalonians, Chapter 5: 1-5 reads, “But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you. For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night. For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape. But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should not overtake you as a thief. Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness.” It should be very obvious that the people to whom Paul was addressing were knowledgeable about prophecy and that prophecy must have formed part of their studies. Because, what Paul was basically saying is, “Listen brethren, you are not in darkness, you are the children of the light. I don’t have to write to you about the seasons and times, you know perfectly well what they are. And so, the day will not overtake you as a thief in the night, as it does others who are in the dark.” Paul goes on to say, “So don’t sleep, be watchful.”
A good marriage is one where both spouses are open and share with one another. God took Israel for wife at Sinai; we know this from Exodus 19. I ask you, “Could any wife have a better husband?” God shared, through His Blessed Word and His Prophecies. Therefore, perhaps we can’t pinpoint the exact hour, or even the exact day of Christ’s return, but God has given us the tools through prophecy to come close in every other sense. This is why Paul basically said, “Don’t forget, keep watching for the fulfillment of what our Husband told us.” The question we must pose to ourselves today, and it is an important one, is “What does God expect from us concerning His prophecies?” In our various groups, we are prone to say that once the blindness is lifted from true Israel, those of us who have been enlightened to the truth will be called upon to teach. And I believe this to be true. After all, those in Christendom really cannot understand the Scriptures based on their interpretation and will surely need guidance. Yet, for any of us to understand God’s Great Plan, we must give prophecy the study it deserves. Howard Rand summed it very well when he wrote, “Prophecy has not been given to men to make them prophets but rather for the purpose of confirming God’s Word and the word of His Son, and thus to enable men who walk by faith to know and recognize the truth.” In other words, prophecy lets us know and understand the truth of what is going on in our world around us.
It is interesting to read the exhortations to the Israelites in 1 Thessalonians 5: 14-27, particularly Verse 20, where God tells us, “Despise not Prophesyings.” Moffat translates this as, “never disdain prophetic revelations, but test them all.” So, in answering the above question, God wants us to immerse ourselves in His prophetic word so we can be in His service during the final countdown. In addition to his encouragement in 1 Thessalonians, consider what he tells us in Amos, Chapter 3. I’ll paraphrase to save a little time. God is speaking to His people Israel, and after He makes that beautiful statement “You alone of all men, have I cared for”, He then poses some questions, questions that are truisms. Among other things, He said “Does a lion in the jungle roar, unless he has some prey? Does a bird drop into a trap, unless the trap is baited, Do not townsfolk tremble, when the alarm is blown?” When you think about each situation, you realize that each statement is infallible. Then, God makes three statements that are also infallible. “Can trouble befall a town, unless The Lord God Almighty is at work?” “The Lord God Almighty never does anything without telling his servants the prophets”, meaning Bible students. “When the lion roars, who does not shudder, when the Lord God Almighty speaks, who can but prophesy.”