“So when you see standing in the holy place, the abomination that causes desolation, spoken of through the prophet Daniel–let the reader understand–then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains.” From Jesus Olivet Discourse, Matthew 24:15-16 NIV)
Our mind often submits to our will and accepts the lies it prefers to God’s truth. For example, if we fear a time of great distress, then we will seek an alternative explanation of last day’s events. If we are determined to choose a path other than the one God provided, what do we think will happen?
There is a way that seems right to a man, but in the end it leads to death. (Proverbs 14:12)
Our series about Matthew 24 and the “The 5 Major Rules for Bible Interpretation” is vitally important, since it informs God’s people that deception has infiltrated a key prophetic teaching of Jesus. As a result, many Christians cannot accurately speak on the sign of Christ’s coming and of the end of the age. All this despite having Bible translations that cannot lead to a meaning other than the one God intended.
In Jesus’ warning (see top of page), he offers the signal God has prepared for his saints. The hard labor of childbirth will suddenly come on His people; they must immediately evacuate and flee to a place of safety. Yet, the “any moment rapture” teachers would have Jesus’ followers believe this will not apply to them. According to their doctrine, before the time of great distress, believers will have been taken to heaven. According to their teachers, Jews in Judea, not the Church, are those for whom the warning is intended–or so they say.
“Watch for near/far prophetic applications in Scripture.” Rule #5, “The Five Major Rules of Bible Interpretation”
A huge, insurmountable problem with the “imminent, any-moment Jesus returns” argument is that their advocates have ignored the above rule, as well as others. It is the same on opposite ends of the last day’s argument. They both apply the above rule to some things (such as Jesus’ first coming as a baby in Bethlehem), yet brush it aside in any discussion regarding Jesus’ second coming. The sad part is that long ago no one called either side to account for breaking the rules. Now it looks like millions who could be saved, will die.
It is ironic that what opposing “any moment” and “allegorical, non-literal or already happened” teachers actively promote, has already reaped catastrophic consequences.
“Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” George Santayana, The Law of Repetitive Consequences
If only God’s people knew history. Eighty thousand who lived in Jerusalem and Judea were slain by the sword of a Gentile king. Forty thousand including pregnant women, nursing mothers, infants and children, suffered a violent death. Another forty thousand were spared but carried away to serve as slaves. It was because they ignored God’s warning written into prophecy. Did they even know Daniel’s prophecy? Were the “educated” dismissive of the prophet? Those who lived to write about it, fled to the mountains at the first sign of the abomination that causes desolation.
In our last segment, we will examine the catastrophic events of 168 B.C. and the near fulfillment of prophecy that concerns the last days.