Lose salvation? (Salvation part 3)

Will I be saved flattened2Do I really want to write an article about this? Wouldn’t be safer to stick with simpler, less controversial subjects like the second coming of Jesus, abortion rights and if there’s apartheid in the Middle East? Nah, lest go for the big one here; let’s talk about losing your salvation.

First, a story to illustrate a point. The 30th President of the United States was Calvin Coolidge, affectionately know as “Silent Cal” because he so often said so little. Coming out of church one Sunday the President was surrounded by reporters, looking for a story. “Mr. President, what did the preacher preach about?!” they asked. “Sin”, replied the President in his typical fashion. Not satisfied, the reporters pressed Coolidge, “Well, what did he say about it?” “He was against it,” replied the President.

How do I feel about losing your salvation? I’m against it. In fact, (gulp), I’ll even say that I don’t think you can lose your salvation. And with that, I’m certain that there will be those who let the dogs out at that statement.  Because this subject really fires people up.

I feel that if you are saved, you can’t lose your salvation. I’ve never found an example in the Bible where it clearly states that someone has lost his salvation. Let’s take a few examples. King Saul at one point was really a man of God and even got prophecies from Him. When he was “little in his own sight” (I Samuel 15:17), God highly exalted him. But he ended up becoming one of the biggest failures in the Bible. “The spirit of the Lord departed from Saul, and an evil spirit from the Lord troubled him.” (I Samuel 16:14)

But did Saul go to hell? The night before Saul’s death on the battle field, he was so distraught that he turned to what must have been a witch or sorcerer in order to try to get back in contact with his old friend and mentor, Samuel. And the Bible says this even happened. But the news wasn’t good. Samuel told Saul, communicating to him from the spiritual world, “tomorrow shall you and your sons be with me”. (I Samuel 28:19) We certainly don’t think that Samuel was in hell. So if Saul was going to be with him the next day, then he would be with him in heaven, not hell. Con-tro-verse-ial!

But there’s more. This is not for delicate ears but we can look in the New Testament and I Corinthians 5. Paul needed to try to deal with a rather detestable subject that had come up with the Corinthians, “that a man should have his father’s wife” (I Corinthians 5:1). Evidently that had happened in the church there. Did Paul say the man had lost his salvation? No. He said they should “deliver such a one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.” (I Corinthians 5:5) Again the call is salvation, even for such a sin as that.

John336Several verses in the book of John or in I John also point this direction of “once saved, always saved”. John 3:36 says, “He that believes on the Son has everlasting life…” It doesn’t say they will have, they may have, they someday might have, it says they have, present tense. If you have eternal life, you can’t lose it, otherwise it wouldn’t be eternal. And in I John 5:13, it says, “These things have I written to you that believe on the name of the son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life, and that you may believe on the name of the Son of God.

Certainty-and-peaceNot hope, not think, not wonder about. Know. That’s a strong word, much stronger than “believe” is in English nowadays. When you know something, it’s finished, it’s done, it’s certain. And that brings to mind two blog posts I’ve written which might be similar to this, one about “Certainty” and the other which is in many ways about Salvation, “The Seed and The Egg”.

Yes, I know there are a number of verses some people hold on to in their belief that someone can lose there salvation. I just feel there are far more verses that say you can’t lose it, if you have it. You may end up in heaven without much of any reward, you may have squandered your life and the grace of God that was shown you on earth in this life. You may have quite a lot of tears that will need to be wiped away in heaven, you may even be in “everlasting shame and contempt” (Daniel 12:2) on the other side for all that you could have done and said here on earth that you never did. But I don’t believe someone will lose their salvation. They’ll be there in heaven, but like the old farmers in the South used to say, “with a long row to hoe.”

“But Mark…!” (Salvation part 2)

must work hard-flattenedBut, Mark! Salvation couldn’t be that easy! Mark, there are millions of people who go to church and aren’t saved! The churches make it so easy for them and tell them they are saved so they just stop any desire for progress in their lives! They live their lives in sin and think it doesn’t matter because of what the churches teach, “once saved, always saved!”

Whew! What do you say to folks who say this? Are they totally wrong on all counts? You know they aren’t. But the solution isn’t to teach that we have to keep struggling throughout our lives to somehow, at the end, to have earned and won salvation. That just isn’t the teaching of the New Testament.

It does go against some element in our nature that salvation could just be a free gift. It just seems like a part of the natural world that we should have to do something to earn God’s grace. But a study of God’s Word in the New Testament shows that this is actually how it is. “It is a gift of God, not of works lest any man should boast” (Ephesians 2:8 & 9). This is a recurrent theme of the writings of the Apostle Paul in the New Testament.

“But Mark! If it’s free, then they won’t appreciate it. There will be no incentive to do good! What about all the admonitions to live a righteous life? What about the Ten Commandments? So many Christians are just spiritually fat and lazy because of what you are teaching!

rewards in heaven-flattenedHere’s a big factor in this. While salvation and eternal life are free gifts through the sacrifice of Jesus, our rewards and recompense in that eternal life to come are highly contingent on what we do with the salvation He’s given us. You talk about all those weak, lazy, often stunted Christians you may see in church?  I have friends who have told me that they think only 3% of the people that we go to church with are saved. And I go to a pretty strongly Bible-believing church.

I personally think that percentage of saved folks at that church is a lot higher than that. But what are those folks doing with their lives? Are theylaying up treasures in heaven”? (Matthew 6:19) Or just accumulating things in this world? Are they really growing in the Lord? Are they really feeding His sheep? Are they withholding or scattering abroad? “He that withholds, it tends to poverty, but he that scatters abroad it increases.” (Proverbs 11:24) How much time do they spend watching worldly, sickening, foolish, Satanic TV every single day? How much time do they spend witnessing and winning souls, or sharing Bible classes with those who need it? How much are they really supporting missionaries abroad who are winning souls?

Treasures-on-earthLet’s face it, millions of Christians are “living in sin” every day! They think that “living in sin” refers to something sexual. So they may have real pure sexual lives and still be “wasting their substance in riotous living” (luke 15:13) by following “the course of this world” (Ephesians 2:2) and not really a path of discipleship in the Lord.

These are all things that will be part of their reward, or lack thereof in the hereafter. I’ll tell you of a somewhat unknown but extremely significant verse, slightly controversial. In Daniel 12:2, it talks about the resurrection of the saints at the coming of the Lord. Here’s what it says, “…some raised to everlasting life, and some raised to shame, and everlasting contempt.

I believe some folks are going to be saved and go to heaven. But like it says about “He shall wipe away all tears from their eyes” (Revelatoin 21:4), some are going to have a lot of tears to wipe away when they see all they could have done in this world, but didn’t do, all the love they could have shown, all the witnessing they could have done to share their faith with others. But they didn’t. All the time they spent in frivolous worldly affairs to the neglect of God and His will and His sheep. Some are going to be in heaven but not much more than that. Very little if any reward.

So I personally believe that God “who will have all men to be saved and to come unto the acknowledging of the truth” (I Timothy 2:4)  is going to see and recognize faith in His son in many people. “Whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved” (Romans 10:13) . But sadly, for very many people, very many, they are like folks who never grow in their lives beyond the mental age of perhaps 5 years old. They never grow up spiritual beyond early childhood. They remain children and sometimes little children in their spiritual lives for their entire Christian life. Because they were saved but that’s about as far as they went. This of course is heartbreaking. Some seem to almost never know there is anything else. Their churches and pastors don’t challenge them to discipleship but are content to just let their members drift along in the lowlands of spirituality.

There’s just a vast work to be done to mentor, disciple, teach and admonish the immense numbers of people who say they are Christians, believe they are Christians but so often don’t really know for sure as they just don’t know the Word. Many just are content to stay where they are. Some of these would make progress if they were shown how.

What about salvation?

Prodical son pictureYou can hardly think about or talk about a bigger subject than salvation. If there is anything at the heart of the New Testament, it would be the subject of salvation. And yet it is another of the almost endless things that believers disagree on. And I’ve found, since being back here in the States for the last 4 years or so, that it’s a very divisive issue among Christians here.

When the Jesus Movement folks witnessed to me back in the ‘70’s, they could tell I already believed in God because I hitchhiked across Texas to find them and I had a Bible with me. I believed in God, but I didn’t know who Jesus was. So they simply asked me, “Are you going to heaven?” I said, “Well, if my good is more than my bad, I will. But if my bad is more than my good, I won’t.

I was really surprised when they didn’t agree and promptly started sharing the plan of salvation with me, something I’d never heard of before. my gift-flattenedThey showed me Ephesians 2:8 & 9. “For by grace are you saved through faith, and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God, not of works lest any man should boast.” They said that salvation was a gift of God, not something that you could work for.

And of course they showed me the most important verse in the Bible, that sums up the whole thing, John 3:16. “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have everlasting life.” And there were other verses, these folks really knew the Word.

They showed me “all have sinned” (Romans 3:23), and “the wages of sin is death but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ” (Romans 6:23). One verse that really impacted me was John 1:12.As many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name.

So they told me that I needed to receive Jesus and they showed me Revelation 3:20, another classic clincher, door of your heartBehold I stand at the door and knock. If any man hears My voice and opens the door, I will come into him, and will sup with him, and he with Me.” They strongly told me that Jesus was knocking at the door of my heart and wanted to come in, that I needed to receive Him. I did and it totally changed my life.

Does everyone have to have the exact same experience as me? Of course not. Many people are brought up in a Christian home and sometimes never remember a time when they didn’t believe in the Lord. But it’s one heck of a big subject as to whether or not some people are saved and if they are saved, if they can then loose their salvation. Some feel that there are millions of people who go to church and go through the motions but that they are not really saved. I’m sure that there are people who go to church who don’t really know what it’s about. I’ve met some who told me that this had happened to them. They said that, after 10 years or more of going to church, they actually got down to business with God and that’s when they got saved.

So thats salvation-flattenedI think a lot of people just don’t really know what it’s all about and they really waver about their salvation. Some large denominations have become so wishy-washy about their teachings that they hardly even teach or preach salvation anymore. So one thing that all of us who know the Lord and know the Word can do for folks like that is to just go through the plan of salvation with them.

It’s not an emotion, it’s not a ceremony. It’s belief. A great verse about salvation is Romans 10:9 & 10. It’s a little complicated but it says it well. “If you shall confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus, and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you shall be saved. For with the heart man believes to righteousness. And with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

Do they believe that God raised Jesus from the dead? Do they say that? Then according to that verse they are saved. Paul said to his jailors, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you shall be saved, and your house.” (Acts 16:31) So often with these things, the Bible time and time again boils it down to faith, belief. That’s the essence, the essential of Salvation. But many people don’t have the assurance of salvation because no one has ever really gotten down to business with them and showed them His plan from the Word. I think many people are saved through faith in Him. But they just don’t know it or are certain of it through the Word.

Whew, big subject. I think I may have to write some more on this. But this is a start.

The parable of the Seed and the Egg

The seed and the eggA verse that’s always been interesting to me is where it says, “The seed is the Word of God”. (Luke 8:11). And since we know that Jesus is the Word, made flesh, then we can see Jesus as “the Seed”. But what are the eggs? We are.

Jesus is The Seed. We are the eggs.

I was having an impromptu Bible class with some young Christians who’d just come to the faith many years ago when, out of nowhere, this class came to me to share with them. If Jesus is the Seed, we are the eggs. Every human being in this world comes into this world in a condition that could be compared to an unfertilized egg.

An unfertilized egg is either going to go one way or the other. Within its nature is the possibility to get fertilized. If it is fertilized, all that potential that’s within it is realized. And it goes on to be all that it ever could be, a completely “new creature” and it continues the process of life that it’s a part of.

egg in nestBut if an egg doesn’t get fertilized, what happens? Sooner or later the time is up for that egg. It is cast out. The life process ends. All that potential, all that possibility that’s within it doesn’t come to fruition because it never received the seed it needed to continue the life process.

Salvation for a Christian involves, in a sense, a fertilization.As many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name” (John 1:12) Immediately we begin to become “new creatures in Christ Jesus, old things past away and all things become new.” (II Corinthians 5:17)

Have you ever seen one of those documentaries that show the instant when a sperm enters an egg? Almost immediately, immediately things begin to change. The egg isn’t really an egg anymore and the sperm isn’t a sperm. They “become one”. No more sperms can get in. And a process starts that begins a totally new life from the combination of the seed and the egg.

That’s how salvation is. When we receive Jesus, we are born again. Jesus said, “Except a man be born again, he cannot see the Kingdom of God.” (John 3:3) And while there’s that moment when life starts when the seed enters the egg, there’s also an ongoing process, after that, of growth from just a tiny embryo to the full and complete being, ready to be born.

Even though we may have received the Lord years ago, we’re still growing (or should be) in Him. “He that has begun a good work in us will complete it to the end”. (Philippians 1:6)

But if we’re just an unfertilized egg, we’re very incomplete. And, so often, we know it. We just feel that something is missing. Many “unfertilized egg” kind of people can wax philosophical and sound very intellectual. They can be very self-realized eggs. But they’re still incomplete, unfertilized. They may seem to really have a lot of answers. But still, at their deepest point, they sense their hopelessness and finiteness.

So many of those kinds are disdainful of the promises of God’s Word. They’re dismissive and mocking of the promise of eternal life through receiving the Seed, Jesus. It’s all too simple for them; it’s beneath them, it’s not intellectual enough.

But it’s there all the time. The enlightenment, the completion, the fulfillment, the release that they’ve been missing can be found. They can be “translated into the Kingdom of God’s dear Son” (Colossians 1:13), into a new and endless universe of light and love, answers and restoration, the fulfillment of more than they’ve ever dreamed of.

But the egg has to be willing to no longer be an egg. If it receives the Seed, it won’t be an egg anymore. It will have accepted the Seed. But if it doesn’t, sooner or later is comes to its end and is cast out. Forever.

What is hell?

What is hell? It’s an egg that has been cast out, having never received the seed. Like the verse that says, “Today, if you will hear his voice, harden not your heart.”(Psalm 95:7 & 8)

God somehow gave me experiences that were very much like what it must feel like for an egg to have been cast out of its place forever. Never having done what it was planned for. No longer within the cycle of life, with the potential to be something more than it was.

I was in eternity, but alone. I’d missed the boat and there was no way back. Ever. No hope, no truth, no life, no understanding. Just confusion and fear, no longer any opportunity to ever again make things right. An unfertilized egg, cast out forever.

Jesus in heart-flattenedThank God He somehow had mercy on me in the lowest hell and showed me the truths of the spiritual world enough that I could choose Him and, months later, His Son.

Don’t remain an unfertilized egg. Receive the Seed. Realize your potential by getting with the program our Creator has designed for our eternal happiness.

Right now, for us fertilized eggs, “Our lives are hid with Christ in God.” (Colossians 3:3) But the day will come for each of us that we will pass out of this stage of our existence. We each will “die”. But it actually will be more like a birth at last into the eternal world of the spirit, where in some ways we live already. We are right now already “sit down in heavenly places in Christ Jesus.” (Ephesians 2:6)

At our death, we will not be cast out into infinite, eternal nothingness and incompleteness. We will find ourselves “complete in Him”  (Colossians 2:10) in the eternal world of the spirit, with “the Father of Spirits” (Hebrews 12:9), God Himself, and His dear Son, Who came and died for us, rose in victory from the dead, and has given us life through Him, the Seed, to do the same.

God Is Light

God is LightI was 21 years old in Houston, Texas.  It was a cold day in early February and I’d hitchhiked there to try to find some “Jesus People” I’d read about in the newspaper. The article said they believed in God and in Jesus and in the Old Testament and the New Testament.

I’d believed in God for several months but I just couldn’t figure out who Jesus was. I’d read all the way through the Bible and I could see that Jesus was really important but I just couldn’t figure it out. I’d gone to some churches but no one really talked to me and it just didn’t seem to have any reality to it, although I knew they taught and believed the Bible.

I found those young Christians and they asked me, “Are you going to heaven?” I told them, “Well, if my good is more than my bad, I’ll go to heaven. But if my bad is more than my good, I won’t.

They didn’t agree. They showed me, “For by grace are you saved through faith and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not of works lest any man should boast.” (Ephesians 2:8 & 9). And they just kept showing me verses from the Bible. I’d never had anyone do that before and they knew them well. They showed me this one, “But as many as received Him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name.” (John 1:12)

Actually they were showing me a lot of Bible verses and I didn’t understand them all. But I could see they were really full of them and they had a strength and convictionRevelation 3-20 I sure didn’t have, even though most of them were younger than me. Another verse that I did understand was Revelation 3:20 which is where Jesus said, “Behold I stand at the door and knock. [they told me that was the door to my heart] If any man hear my voice and open the door, I will come into him…

Towards the evening, while they were having a Bible study, the conviction of the Lord just came upon me so strongly and I raised my hand and told them right then that I wanted to ask Jesus to come into my heart. So I went out into the middle of the room and they prayed with me to receive Jesus.

Were there lightenings, thunders and a great earthquake when that happened? No. I’d already had quite a lot of experiences that had helped to prepare me for even being able to get to the place where I could receive the Lord. So it was sort of a quiet (new) birth for me right then.

However, I still didn’t really know who Jesus was. I stayed with these folks for a few days and maybe two days later I asked one of them, “But who is Jesus?” So they showed me the famous passage from John chapter 1 and that really, really changed my life.

John 1:1 says this, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” And then the 14th verse says, “And the Word was made flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only Begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.

And they said, “That’s who Jesus is. He is the Word. He was with God in heaven and He came to earth, died for us, rose from the dead and will return some day.

The impact this had on me was virtually indescribably. I’d had no idea of this or at least it had never dawned on me at all before that. I guess you could say that I said in my heart right then, “There are two of Them! God isn’t up there by Himself. Jesus is there with God and was there before and will always be!

desperate prayer-flattenedImmediately I excused myself and went quickly to an empty room to pray. Desperately. I prayed about as desperately as I ever have, pouring out my heart to, not only God, but to Jesus this time, for the first time. I don’t know how long I prayed but, back in those days, my life was in such shambles that I seemed to have to pray like that somewhat often.

At the end, when I sort of “came back down”, after I’d felt like I’d come before the throne of God and of Jesus, I found that I was surrounded by my friends there who’d been praying for me as I prayed.

And then one of them shared a verse with me that has always stuck with me. “This then is the record which we have heard of God and declare unto you, that God is light, and in Him is no darkness at all.” (I John 1:5)

God is light. No darkness. I had in my past known so much darkness in so many forms. But now I’d come to the light. There was so, so much that still needed to be washed and cleansed from my mind and even heart. But I had been brought to, and had found, the Light. It’s like the verse that sums up the salvation experience that millions have had, “Who has delivered us from the power of darkness, and has translated up into the Kingdom of His dear Son, in whom we have redemption through His blood, even the forgiveness of sins.” (Colossians 1:13 & 14)

Angel Story 1: Lucifer and the White Moths

Angel Story 1 main pic-flattenedThe first experience I had with an angel is one I probably won’t relate right here and now. It was the most traumatic and basically indescribable. Sadly but righteously, it was with Lucifer. He came to claim me, as was his right at that point in my life. I won’t relate it all here as it is not easy to describe or explain but I’ll try to do that sometime in a post or a video.

But that experience when I was 20 was I suppose the pinnacle experience of my life. The Bible talks about “some saved by fire” (Jude 23), that is certainly true with me. Or like Jesus said of Thomas, “Thomas, because you have seen me, you have believed.” (John 20:29) A lot of things are not as much “by faith” for me because the Lord somehow let me see things so I sometimes feel like Thomas in the Bible. Some people in life-after-death experiences have an angel of God come and take them to heaven. It is such an incredibly wonderful experience that often they really don’t even want to come back to this world. In my case it was the opposite. But more about that at another time.

Fundamentally, categorically, absolutely that changed my life. At that moment when I struggled with every iota of soul and spirit I had within me just to not be taken from my body, I said in my mind, “If this is real, then there’s supposed to be the opposite of this. There is supposed to be a God of Love, a God of Truth and Light.” So I “prayed” at that moment to the God of the Bible to help me not die right then. I put “prayed” in quotation marks there because we so often think of prayer as a subdued religious ceremony, with our eyes closed and our hands folded. My prayer back then was from the deepest place of my existence, with every ounce of meaning I had in me.

I didn’t die and go with the devil to hell then. I couldn’t sleep for 3 days because I didn’t have the faith to sleep. I didn’t know what would happen to me if I went to sleep. But gradually, very gradually some sense of normalcy came back to my life. But it had changed, utterly. Paul, speaking of how God delivers people from Satan said “Who has delivered us from the power of darkness, and has translated us into the Kingdom of His dear Son.” (Colossians 1:13)

For me, I wasn’t even there yet. I heard someone say one time about great sculptors, when they’re going to make a statue, the first just start off with a big chunk of rock. Whack! They knock off one big piece. Whack! There goes another chunk. For me, it took quite a few whacks before I was even ready to become a Christian. First and biggest was just getting me to understand that there is a real, true, spiritual world. Seeing Satan and being drawn out of your body by him for your eternal damnation will do a lot to destroy your unbelief.

But there were other angels. And I think I’m going to try to make some kind of rating system for all this. Angels are not always, not even usually, 10 feet tall with white robes and big wings. I’ve never seen one of those. And some things are supernatural but you don’t see the angels involved although you know they must be there.

Here’s one like that. This event with Lucifer took place in a tiny efficiency apartment near the University of Texas campus. It was so traumatic and all consuming that I remained in something of a condition or state for a few days where the spiritual world was closer to being my real world than this physically one we all usually consider “the real world”.

But a somewhat lesser or minor thing that happened at that time was that one evening, probably 2 days after these huge events, I was in my bathroom. And it filled up with maybe 100 tiny white moths or butterflies. They were very benign and non threatening and I remember at that time that they seemed like angels or that perhaps God had allowed this to happen in the physical to represent what had happened in the spiritual. It says of Jesus, “Then the devil departed from Him and angels came and ministered to Him.” (Matthew 4:11) I didn’t know that verse as I didn’t know any verse in the Bible at that time. But I felt all those little white fluttering insects were symbolic of angels who’d come to be with me after I’d turned from my evil ways and had chosen the God of Abraham rather than the devil.

Bottom line for this first story: it was definitely an angel, just the wrong kind and the wrong one. He’d been allowed by God to come and claim my soul after I’d gone so far away from the truth and the light. As for the little white moths or butterflies, they weren’t angels. But God allowed them there right then to be a symbolic sign of the beginning of my altered spiritual condition.

The end of the world?

A Russian friend of mine has had many people asking him about “the end of the world”. He asked if I could write a small tract on this subject which he could give to others. Here’s what I sent him.

EndoftheWorldart-flattenedHave you heard people talking about the end of the world? Lots of people said it was supposed to happen on December 21, 2012. It had something to do with the calendar of some South American Indians, the Mayas. But then nothing happened. So there’s nothing to worry about, right?

Well, if you look at the world today, politically, economically or environmentally, there certainly seems to be a lot to be concerned about, even to seriously worry about. But, really, “the end of the world?”

If you have faith in the God of Abraham — the God of the Christians, the Jews and the Muslims — then you can know from the prophets that God doesn’t say there’s going to really be an “end of the world” in the way some people say or the way some movies portray it.

On the other hand, the Bible certainly predicts a future awesome ending of this age that will bring in the Kingdom of God on earth. And from the way the Bible describes those events, it could certainly almost seem like the end of the world. Because, as Jesus Himself and the prophet Daniel described that future time, it will be “a time of trouble such as was not since the beginning of the world.” Matthew 24:21, Daniel 12:1.

It will be a time of great, even horrific trouble. But it won’t be the end of the earth and mankind. That’s what the Bible prophets have predicted for the end of this age. And, strangely, the Koran has similar things to say about a future time like this.

To go into all the details right here is not possible. But of the many specific signs that are predicted to happen just before this mighty change, there are a couple of things that you could look out for. The New Testament says that in the last 3½ years before the return of Jesus to rule the earth, a demon possessed dictator will come to power who will attempt to rule the whole world. In the last 100 years we’ve seen some of the most powerful, deadly dictators in all history. These men have savagely ruled empires and been responsible for the deaths of 10’s of millions of people. But this dictator to come will be worse than them all and will ultimately demand that all the people of the world worship him. See II Thessalonians 2:3&4, Revelation 13:5-8

Another thing is clearly predicted. In the final days before the return of Jesus, this world dictator, that the Bible calls the AntiChrist, will bring in a new world political and economic order. Part of this will have to do with an economic system requiring some kind of implant or chip that links all people into a central system of control. The Bible predicts that “no man could buy or sell unless they have this mark in their hand or forehead.” See Revelations 13:16 & 17.

But this time of “great tribulation” that will last 3½ years will be followed by the return of Jesus to separate those who believe in Him from those who’ve followed the satanic AntiChrist. The Bible says that God will pour out for a brief time His wrath on the earth to cleanse it and to destroy the evil and decadence that has been so built up. But after that, Jesus and His followers will establish His kingdom on earth and rule over those who survived on earth into this heavenly time.

What about you? You might think like so many do, “Aw, everything’s going to be ok. That’s not going to happen in my lifetime.” Maybe so, maybe not. There are so many signs right now and things could easily move into these very final days almost at any time.

But the truly safest and wisest thing to do, no matter what happens, is to have a personal relationship with the One who God sent to save us from whatever happens in our lifetimes. That of course is Jesus of Nazareth who came to earth as a man, even though He was the Son of God who’d been with God from all eternity. His death and resurrection made it so that we can be restored to fellowship with God and with Jesus.

You may not understand it all but you can experience it by praying a short prayer right now. “Dear Jesus. I need your love and power within me. Please come into my heart, forgive me of my sins and give me the new life you promised you would give to those who call on You.”

If you prayed that, He promised He would answer. He said “If any man hear My voice and open the door (to your heart) I will come in to them.” Revelation 3:20. It’s the beginning of a new life, an eternal life. So whatever may come on this earth, you’ll be one of God’s children and He said, “I will never leave you or forsake you.” Hebrews 13:5