Signs of The Times?
What Is Going On Behind The Scene?
Matthew 24:6-8 You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. Nation will rise against nation and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of birth pains. NIV
Almost anybody you ask has heard this verse quoted either through a church service or even in secular media. Believers and non-believers recognize Matthew’s writings and can easily apply them to the global stage and many currently escalating situations.
We have seen just in the last thirty or forty years civil wars in Serbia, the break up of the Soviet Union, Middle Eastern terrorism and continuous threats to the existence of Israel, and many nations in Africa, Asia, and South America experiencing a continued civil war or dictatorial mayhem.
The current border tension between Russia and Ukraine is nothing new. Ukraine stood strong against the Red army when Lenin and the bolsheviks took control of the Imperial government and replaced it with a Socialist one. For a thousand years or so, the Russian and Ukrainian people have lived side by side but have also been at times hostile toward one another.
I have personally visited Ukraine on several occasions and love the people and culture. In fact, I enjoy studying the culture, languages, and people of the Former Soviet Union countries. It is a region filled with diverse people groups, religions, languages, and cuisine. Unfortunately, in missions and evangelism, it is an area often overlooked, or many see it as completely hostile and closed.
However, there has been a lot of Revival activity in Ukraine as of late, and in the past, Russia and other FSU nations have experienced revival. But, like all moves of God, the window may be closing. With escalated tensions, one has to ask, “what good can come out of this?”
As Jesus said in Matthew 24, the wars and rumors of wars and kingdoms rising and falling are merely birth pangs. This is nothing new. But why is this situation escalating now at this time? Could biblical prophecy pointing to the rise of the Russian Bear and a coalition with Iran and other nations be coming forth? Are we closer than we realize to the fulfillment of Biblical prophecy?
None of us know for sure, but signs are clear that we are closer than ever to seeing these types of things manifest. As we know, our world will never go back to the way it was pre-covid. So, to couple plagues and disease along with wars and rumors of wars, we have seen governments seek to exercise as much totalitarian authority as possible. How much can they get away with?
Perhaps, Russia is seeking to find out how much they can get away with. Is it just gas and oil they are after? Or is it an opening to the Black Sea, which they have after annexing portions of the Crimea? But, ultimately, it won’t matter as the kings of the earth continue to rage and thrash about as they seek what is not theirs to have.
The Nations Will Continue To Rage
Psalm 2 asks, “why do the nations rage?” The kings of the earth are raging for various reasons, but they all are supported by the fact that their rage results from the Anti Christ powers that have sought rulership of this world since Genesis 3. In Genesis ten and eleven, we see the table of nations that resulted after Nimrod led a rebellion at Babel.
Since the Babel event, God has sought to restore the nations, and He began that with a man named Abraham. His seed formed what would become the nation of Israel, the chief among nations. Unfortunately, the Israel we have today is not the Israel God desired. But that will change, and Israel will take up her place as chief among the nations with her king, Yeshua, ruling from His throne in Jerusalem.
So, the nations continue to rage because they are in rebellion against their king, Jesus. They are part of the false-New Jerusalem, Babel, or Babylon. Such disputes we are seeing will be settled by Jesus in the age to come. I know many of you have no idea what I am talking about. Your theology may not line up with the Millenial Kingdom or 1,000 years of Peace, but it is straight out of Revelation and passages in Isaiah.
It has been the plan all along to restore everything as it was created. The first Adam gave up rulership, but the second Adam, Jesus, has taken it back and His people, believers, and disciples everywhere, are to continue advancing the Kingdom of God. Soon the war to end all wars will appear, and all will know who is in charge.
Birth Pangs Will Continue
‘All of these things are merely the beginning of birth pangs.’
Every woman experiences birth pangs before giving birth. The nations will birth either a healthy nation that will follow the commands and teachings of Jesus or will be a goat nation and follow after Satan and his plans. As we get closer to the return of the King, these things will intensify.
Currently, the eyes of the world are on Russia/Ukraine. It has taken the attention off of the pandemic and Middle East situation. It has caused some to forget that there are empty grocery store shelves in the USA and ongoing issues in the supply chain. Many have forgotten that Christians are persecuted in China as the Olympics continue. Or have we forgotten that people are suffering and starving under the Taliban in Afghanistan?
There are other issues that I could add, but we cannot get distracted and forget the pain and suffering going on around us. Let us keep our eyes on Jesus and prepare for His return. As things get worse naturally, keep focusing on Him and do not allow the enemy to steal your joy or peace.
If it is only the beginning, or somewhere near it now, then we still have a lot to see and experience. However, we are probably further along, and things can move fast in a moment of time. Regardless our job is to stand in the gap and pray for Jesus to receive His inheritance: the nations.
Stay tuned for Part 2: The Hunters Are Coming