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MM#99 – ASTEROIDS, AND THE DAYS OF NOAH

First edition April 2001.  This edition December 2008

 

 

ASTEROIDS

“As it was in the days of Noah”

 

“Just as it happened in the days of Noah,

so it shall be also in the days prior to the

return of the Son of Man.”

(Luke 17:26)

 

By  DON  E  STANTON

 

Maranatha Revival Crusade, Western Australia

 

CONTENTS

         Dictionary       

1       The Threat of Asteroids        

2       Spacecraft Lands on Asteroid Eros 

3       The Cosmic Crash of 1994    

4       Predictions: True and False 

5       The Day God Shakes the Universe  

6       Plate Tectonics: Earth's Broken Crust         

7       The Amazing Ship that Noah Built 

8       As it was in the Days of Noah          

9       A Day of Judgment Ahead!

10     Preachers of Righteousness

11     The Great Tribulation

12     The Second Shaking

13     The Earth will be Split Through

14     The Sun Turned to Blackness

15     Unprecedented Period of Judgment

16     Is it the End of the World?

17     There is a New World Coming        

18     Where is the Ark Today?

19     What Type of God is Yahweh the Eternal One?

20     God is Not Willing That Any Should Perish!

21     How to Enter the “Ark” to be Saved

 

DICTIONARY

ASTEROID: Asteroids are rocky, metallic objects that orbit the Sun, but are mostly too small to be considered planets.  Their sizes range from small pebbles to rocks hundreds of kilometres wide.

YHWH: the transliteration of the Hebrew letters of the sacred Name of the Almighty God. (  ). The Name is used 6855 times in the Hebrew Bible. It is currently pronounced as Yahweh or Yahwah. During the past few centuries it was inaccurately rendered as Jehovah or Yehowah. The meaning of Yahweh is "The Eternal One."

Y'SHUA: the original Hebrew Name of Jesus. It is also often written as Yeshua, or Yahshua. The meaning of Y'shua is, "Yahweh is Salvation."

THE MESSIAH means "The Anointed One." It comes from the Hebrew HaMashiach. Y'shua is the fulfilment of the Messianic prophecies of the Old Testament. All Christians recognise Y'shua (Jesus) as the Messiah.

 

BIBLE QUOTATIONS

 

used in this book are from the Clear Preferred Version (CPV), a clear teaching version being compiled by Don Stanton. It employs modern English, and uses the original Names of YHWH and Y'shua. Words in italics are not in the original, by are supplied to complete or to amplify the English translation.

 

PICTURE OF A MODEL OF NOAH’S ARK

This photograph of Noah’s Ark is used by permission of Rod Walsh, who built the model.

An informative video with photos and details of the Ark is avail­able

( $24.95. including postage in Australia), from ...

Rod and Nancy Walsh, PO Box 462. Drysdale, Vic 3222.

Australia. Phone (03) 5251 3690

 

1

THE THREAT OF ASTEROIDS

 

 

ON 23 MARCH 1989, an asteroid whizzed past the earth at about 125,000 kilometres per hour.  The massive lump of rock, estimated to be about a half mile wide, and weighing 50 million tonnes, crossed earth’s orbit, missing the planet by a mere six hours.  It came within 640,000 kilometres of the earth. In cosmic terms that is almost a direct hit. By comparison, the moon is about 408,000 kilometres from the earth.

According to a report in TIME (1.5.89), if that asteroid had hit the earth, it would have had the wallop of thousands of H-bombs, and could have killed millions. If it had hit the sea, it could have triggered tidal waves hundreds of metres high.

The asteroid, named 1989FC, was detected only after it had passed the earth.

Half-mile-wide asteroids are not rare.  There are, in fact, some 4,000 asteroids as big as 1989FC, whose orbits regularly cross the path of the Earth.

Another asteroid, large enough to cause global catastrophe, came close to Earth in May 1996. It was discovered only 6 days before its pass.  Some asteroids give only a few seconds warning, while some, like 1989FC, which came from the direction of the sun, give no warning at all.

The closest shave in recent years was in 1994 when a house-sized rock flew within 120,000 km of earth.

Over the last 20 years there have been an increasing number of reports from universities and space agencies, warning of the danger of possible cosmic catastrophes in the near or distant future. Cosmic scientists are concerned about the very real possibility of asteroids or comets hitting the earth.

An article in The Australian, 12 April 1988, gave an alarmist report, entitled ...

“WAITING FOR COSMIC CATASTROPHE”

“An average of 1000 tonnes of extra-terrestrial matter collide with Earth every day. Fortunately for the human race, most of this enters the atmosphere as microscopic debris, and causes no harm to life-forms, and little or no damage to the environment. A very real possibility, however, is that one day a lump of rock large enough to obliterate life as we know it, will hit the planet.”

Another report, from AAP, Washington, warned:

“ASTEROIDS THREAT TO EARTH’S CIVILISATION”

“Errant asteroids from deep space could destroy civilisation on earth, according to scientists of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration Advisory Council. They recommend that men should plan to use missiles and hydrogen bombs to deflect errant asteroids back into space.

“The scientists said there were about 800 asteroids in deep space which could destroy most of life on our planet. They said there were hundreds of thousands of smaller ones that could demolish a single city or region. The only way to avoid an impending collision would be to detect the possibility far in advance and intercept the approaching body with hydrogen bombs. Such a project could eventually cost billions of dollars, but the Advisory Council proposed a modest beginning - a few million dollars to start Project Spacewatch.

1997  XF11

In December 1997, a 1.6 km-wide asteroid was discovered, which space scientists announced was likely to hit the earth on Oct 26, 2028. It would have the impact force equivalent to a 20,000-megaton nuclear bomb.

Named 1997 XF11, it has the potential to kill millions, to create massive tidal waves, to engulf continents in fire, and to raise enough dust to block the sun’s rays and to cool the planet.

 

AN ARTIST’S IMPRESSION OF 1997 XF11 OVER NEW YORK CITY

 

The latest news is that XF11 is going to miss the earth by about a million kilometres. Good news! But astronomers are concerned about ...

A LOT OF DEBRIS OUT THERE

Asteroids are rocky, metallic objects that orbit the Sun, but they are too small to be considered planets.  Their sizes range from small pebbles to huge rocks hundreds of kilometres wide.

Many scientists believe that these space rocks are the remains of an early planet which broke up early in the solar system. Scientific opinion, however, varies on the origin of asteroids.

Several thousand of the largest asteroids in this belt have been given names. The largest identified asteroid is Ceres, which has a diameter of about 1030 kilometres (640 miles). Two others are Pallas and Vesta which have diameters of about 550 km (340 miles).

At least 200 asteroids have diameters of more than 97 km (60 miles).

According to the Spacewatch program which has been scanning the skies since 1981, there are at least 1,700 near-Earth asteroids out there, each about 1-km wide. Each is big enough to cause global chaos. (A one-km-wide object would strike with the power of millions of Hiroshima-type atomic bombs.)

The International Astronomical Union has a list of about 110 potentially hazardous 1-km-wide asteroids that will come dangerously close to earth in the next few centuries.

“One of the 1,700 might have our name on it.”

Just as worrying are the estimated 300,000 ninety-metre-wide asteroids that could potentially intersect with the Earth’s orbit, and the million or so twenty-metre wide objects floating out there that could each wipe out a city.

THE ASTEROID BELTS

A major 300 million km-wide asteroid belt, between Mars and Jupiter, is comprised of at least 100,000 asteroids. 

Scientists have more recently discovered, they believe, the existence of two other asteroids belts much closer to Earth.  One, containing thousands of asteroids, orbits the Sun, and lies between Earth and Mars.  The other is believed to be between Mercury and the Sun.

IMPACT SITES

Geologists have found more than 150 weathered impact sites around the globe. A one-km-wide, 210-meter-deep crater in Arizona is believed to be the result of the impact millenniums ago, of a 30-meter wide asteroid.

In 1908, in Siberia’s Tunguska River area, an asteroid the size of a small building blew up in the atmosphere. Although it did not hit the ground, the shock wave knocked down a forest and killed thousands of animals.

The Meteorite Crater (above) in Australia was discovered

from the air in 1947.  At least 150 craters or impact sites

have been discovered around the world. 

 

The earth, evidently, has not been actually hit in the last two centuries, but it has had many near encounters with both comets and asteroids. In June 1770, comet Lexell came within the relatively small distance of 2.2 million kilometres. 

In 1861, Earth passed through the tail of the Great Comet and came within 16 million kilometres of the nucleus of the comet. In May 1983, another comet whizzed past the Earth at a distance of 4.8 million kilometres.

Scientists estimate that a big cosmic collision would blast away more material than it delivers. In the case of a 100-km-wide object hitting Earth, the bang would be big enough to strip off the atmosphere and swathe the planet in rock vapour, creating a global furnace at 3,000 degrees C.

Atomic scientists warn that simply attempting to blow up an asteroid risked turning the object into a shower of smaller but still dangerous pellets.

I  suspect,  from  the  description  of  a  Biblical  prophecy  in Revelation 6, that there may be too many asteroids pelting our planet for the missiles of the American Spacewatch to intercept. Man’s “asteroid shield,” I fear, will not be completed in time, and that it will be totally inadequate.

“And the stars of the sky fell to earth, as a fig tree casts its unripe figs when shaken by a strong wind.”   (Revelation 6:13)

CINEMAS ARE BLOWING TRUMPETS

A film released in 1998 was called “Deep Impact.” It was about a comet that was on a collision course with earth. In the movie, an American space mission actually lands on the core of the comet, and plants some nuclear devices. The explosion succeeds only in splitting the comet into two. A few days before the impact, nuclear missiles intercept the first part of the comet, but they fail to budge or destroy it.  The impact creates massive tidal waves that wash away whole cities. 

The American President announces that the second part of the comet would cause a “nuclear winter” and destroy most life on earth.  A last minute salvation comes when the space mission is able to fly into a crevice in the comet and release their final nuclear devices. This blows the comet into a million pieces.  And Earth, although in ruins, is saved from total destruction!

Another similar type of movie that was released in the same year, was called “Armageddon.” It featured a Texas-sized asteroid heading for Earth, and a hair-raising landing on the monster asteroid.

 

2

SPACECRAFT LANDS ON ASTEROID EROS

In 1991, NASA’s Galileo space probe, on its way to Jupiter, took the first close-up pictures of an asteroid. But on 12th February 2001, a NASA spacecraft actually landed on Eros, an asteroid about 330 million kilometres from the Earth.

After a journey of 3.4 billion kilometres, and a full year in orbit around the large space rock, the bus-size craft, NEAR, touched down lightly on the asteroid. The one year close-orbit study of Eros produced far more results than NASA planned, or expected. Finally the scientists decided to end the mission by attempting a land to NEAR on the asteroid.

Responding to commands from Earth, 330 million kilometres away, the robot craft touched down after transmitting 69 images of the asteroid during its final descent.

The scientists were delighted at the soft landing and the signals and photos received. And as NEAR was still communicating with Earth, the mission was extended for 2 weeks, to collect more information about the surface of Eros.

Space watchers believe all this is a critical experience, in view of the Earth’s eventual rendezvous with a doomsday asteroid.

If that asteroid is located in time, the steps to counteract its threat, would be: 1. Monitor the object and determine its exact orbit. 2. Launch recognisance spacecraft to study the asteroid, to determine if it is made of soft stone or solid iron, and plant a transponder on its surface. Signals would allow Earth to trace the asteroid so as to calculate the exact time and place of its expected impact. 3. Explode a nuclear warhead near the object to change its speed, and to nudge it out of its dangerous orbit. 4. Determine the new orbit, and give it another shot if necessary.

 

3

THE COSMIC CRASH OF 1994

In July 1994, just about every telescope on earth was focusing on the planet Jupiter, some 400 million miles away from Earth. The spectacle was the biggest explosion ever witnessed in the solar system.  A comet named Shoemaker-Levy 9 walloped Jupiter, with a force 50 million times more powerful than the biggest nuclear weapon ever exploded on earth - the Russian 50-megaton H-bomb.

The comet, named after its discoverers, astronomers Eugene and Carolyn Shoemaker, and David Levy, had long been in orbit around Jupiter, but in 1992 it broke up into 21 pieces - each one like a small mountain, and a natural megabomb.

The Jupiter-gazers that week were not disappointed.  It was more spectacular than most had predicted. It was an inferno on the giant planet - the most violent event in the Solar System ever recorded by man.

Some of the fireballs were, for some moments, brighter than the whole planet, and some of the hot spots on Jupiter were bigger than the whole Earth.

Some of the colour pictures were brilliant.

Jupiter, which is 300 times bigger than Earth, was battered and marred.  I’m glad I was not on Jupiter in 1994.

TIME magazine (23 May 94), warned:

"The cataclysmic explosion will serve as a warning to Earth: It could happen here!

It could happen, says TIME. But, dear friends, the Bible says it will happen!  It will happen during the Great Tribulation, the time that God has fixed to judge the world.

 

4                                                          

PREDICTIONS, TRUE AND FALSE 

There have been many reports and predictions of doomsday over the years, made by politicians, economists, scientists, clairvoyants, astrologers, wizards and religious weirdo’s. There have been those who have set dates for “the end of the world,” or other lesser calamities. Unfulfilled predictions, of course, leave many people sceptical, and leave the forecasters busy trying to explain where their pre-guess-dictions went wrong.

There is, however, a developing science of disaster forecasting that can be an authentic means of alerting nations to impending tragedies - famines, cyclones, pestilences, diseases, volcanos, earthquakes and asteroids. Exactness in such forecasting is, of course, relative.

On the other hand, there are the totally reliable prophecies of the Bible. The Word of Yahweh will be fulfilled, 100%.

The Almighty does not print out horoscopes for us as individuals, but He does spell out details of future events for certain nations, and for the world.

The dates have not been revealed, but the Bible does tell of an upheaval in the universe that will cause the earth to shake violently. It also warns of earthquakes, the stars falling to the earth, the sun turning to blackness, and it gives details of the ultimate disaster - The Great Tribulation.

Regarding the coming endtime upheaval, Y’shua, Jesus the Messiah, gave this prophecy: 

“And there will be mighty and violent earthquakes in various places, and plagues and famines; and there will be terrors and great signs from heaven ... And there will be signs in the sun and moon and stars, and upon earth despair among nations, with perplexity at the roaring and tossing of the sea. Men’s hearts will faint from terror, being apprehensive of what is coming upon the world; for the very powers of the heavens will be shaken.”      (Luke 21:11, 25-26)

5

THE DAY GOD SHAKES THE UNIVERSE

Both the Old Testament and the New Testament warn of the shaking of the universe. Let’s read the New Testament prophecy first:

“See to it that you do not refuse Him who is speaking. For if those who refused to listen to the one who warned them on earth did not escape, how much less will we escape if we turn away from Him who warns us from heaven.

“At that time His voice shook the earth, but now He has promised, ‘ONCE MORE I WILL SHAKE NOT ONLY THE EARTH, BUT ALSO THE HEAVENS.’ And this expression, once more, indicates the removing of those things which are being shaken - things that have been created - so that what cannot be shaken may remain.

“Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom which cannot be shaken, let us have His abundant grace by which we may serve God acceptably with reverence and awe; for our God is indeed a consuming fire.”                                (Hebrews 12:25-29)

A time of shaking is coming, a time when everything that can be shaken, will be shaken.  Our political systems will be shaken; our economic and financial systems will be shaken; our communications, our health and welfare; our education and religious institutions; our social structures, our families, our law and order and judicial systems; everything will be shaken to its very foundations.

It’s both a testing time, and a purging of corruption and unrighteousness. This shaking is scheduled for the seven years of the Great Tribulation, of which Y’shua the Messiah (Jesus Christ) warned:

“Then there will be a great tribulation, such as has never occurred since the beginning of the world until now; and there will be nothing like it again.”  (Matthew 24:21)

The Hebrews Scripture above is a quotation from an earlier prophecy - from the Old Testament book of Haggai:

‘For thus says YHWH of Hosts, ‘In a little while I will once more shake the heavens and the earth, the sea and the dry land. And I will shake all the nations; and the Desire of all nations will come; and I will fill this house (this temple) with glory,’ says YHWH of Hosts.” (Haggai 2:6-7)

It’s quite clear, all nations will be shaken, and the shaking will reach a climax just before the Messiah, “the Desire of all nations,” returns to reign in righteousness and glory.

Now notice those two words, ONCE MORE, in both prophecies.

Once more I am going to shake the heavens and the earth.”

Way back in March 1981, THE SUN, carried an article about the wobbling of the earth. It began with this sentence:

“To the astonishment and alarm of the world’s scientists, the earth’s axis has for the past few months been jerking backward and forwards around the geographical north pole. The earth is now wobbling violently as it spins in space; scientists blame the wobble for the ever-increasing number of serious earthquakes in the past five years, and warn that there could be much worse to come.”

Earthquakes have certainly become much worse since in 1981. But I was particularly struck by the final paragraph of the article, about scientific research.

“All this research,” the article said, “is being carried out with a deep sense of urgency, for every month that passes brings nearer the time when the earth will once more decide to wobble its way to disaster. It could be today!”

And Yahweh the Almighty God says He is going to shake the heavens and the earth once more.  Earthquakes are one way of shaking the earth. That’s already happening. Asteroids are another way; and that’s still to come.

There are two specific prophecies concerning the “ultimate earthquake”; one in the Old Testament, the other in the New Testament.  Look at these prophecies:

“Terror and pit and snare confront you, O inhabitant of the earth. Whoever flees at the sound of terror will fall into a pit, and he who climbs out of the pit will be caught in a snare; for the windows above are opened, and the foundations of the earth shake. The earth is broken asunder, the earth is split through, the earth is shaken violently. The earth reels to and fro like a drunkard, and it totters like a shack, for its transgression is heavy upon it ...”  (Isaiah 24:17-20)

“The seventh angel poured out his bowl into the air; and a loud voice came out of the temple in heaven from the throne, saying, ‘It is done!’ Then there were flashes of lightning and sounds and peals of thunder; and there was a great earthquake, such as there had not been since man came to be upon the earth, so great an earthquake was it, and so mighty. The great city was split into three parts, and the cities of the nations collapsed. And God remembered Babylon the Great and gave her the cup filled with the wine of His furious wrath and indignation. And every island fled away, and the mountains could not be found.” (Revelation 16:17-20)

This is a massive shaking of the whole globe - “the ultimate earthquake” seismologists are talking about - “The Big One.”

But let’s go back a bit.  If the earth is to shake once more,’ then we must ask ...

WHEN WAS THE FIRST SHAKING?

It was at the time of the Great Flood in Noah’s day.

Most of my readers know the story of Noah and the building of the Ark. And just about everyone has heard about the Great Flood that destroyed civilisation, some 4,500 years ago.

Many children learn the story early at Sunday School, and indeed, the account of this great patriarch and his role is one of the children’s favourites. It catches the imagination ... Noah leading the lions and leopards, the elephants and emus, the giraffes, goats and gazelles, two by two, into the great ship he made.

Noah, however, is not merely a children’s story. The Flood was the most frightful event in human history; the greatest act of divine judgment in all the corridors of time.

The Flood was a display of God’s righteousness, and it was also a warning of the wrath to come at the end of the age - upon our contemporary disobedient world. And if man would learn the lesson of history, it is this - God, although a God of great love, will not tolerate evil, nor strive with mankind forever. He is the holy and righteous God, and ...

“God now commands all people everywhere to repent (that is, to change their minds and to amend their ways with abhorrence for their sins), because He has fixed a day in which He will judge the world in righteousness through a Man whom He has appointed, having furnished proof to all by raising Him from the dead.” (Acts 17:30-31)

An article in The Australian (22.4.96) maintains:

“GIANT COMET, NOT GOD’S WRATH,

CAUSED BIBLICAL FLOOD: GEOLOGIST

“The Biblical flood, a central tenet of three of three world’s great religions, was nothing to do with divine wrath: the real cause, according to new research, was a giant comet that hit the Earth.

“In the same way as Jupiter was rocked two years ago by the million-megaton impact of the comet Shoemaker-Levy, so Earth was bombarded 12,000 years ago by the fragments of a similar celestial visitor. It caused tidal waves, the mass extinction of many prehistoric species such as the mammoth and sabre-toothed tiger and turned the world dark for months.”

The author of the study was an internationally renowned geologist, Professor Alexander Tollmann of the Institute of Geology in Vienna. He is evidently not a Bible believer, for if he were, he would not deny that the Flood was God’s wrath, for that is exactly what the Bible declares it to be. 

But here is a geologist who can at least see that an object from space caused the Flood, and that it was a universal disaster. His paper caused controversy. Some geologists denounced Tollmann as a fantasist. Others supported his ideas.

Prof Tollmann referred to the numerous “myths” of a great flood, recorded in almost every past civilisation. Many scientists do not accept that there ever was a worldwide flood.

FOUR ANCIENT, NON-BIBLICAL ACCOUNTS

Among the 270 flood stories from around the world, the four legends below are very significant in lining up with the Biblical account of Noah's flood. But first ...

THE FACTUAL BIBLICAL ACCOUNT

An ark of 300 cubits length was made of Gopher (Cypress) wood.

Survivors: Noah and family (8 members), and animals and birds.

Catastrophe: A flood covered the whole world. Ark landed on Mt Ararat. A new civilization began.

THE ASSYRIAN-BABYLONIAN LEGEND

A vessel of 600 cubits long.

Survivors: Ubaratutu, his family, friends, animals and birds.

Catastrophe: A flood lasting 6 days and nights.  Vessels lands on Mt Nizer. A dove returns, but not the raven.  Ubaratutu and his wife allowed to live like gods.

THE welsh legend

A vessel without rigging.

Survivors: Dwyfan and Dwyfach.

Catastrophe: A great flood caused by the eruption of the Lake of Waves. After the waters receded, Dwyfan and Dwyfach repopulated Britain.

THE CHINESE LEGEND

A sailing junk.

Survivors: Yao and seven others.

Catastrophe: A flood and earthquake. The earth fell into pieces. The waters overflowed. They eventually receded.

THE AZTEC LEGEND

Large raft made of Cypress wood.

Survivors: Coxcox with wife, children and animals.

Catastrophe: A flood covered the earth for 2 years. Coxcox sent out a vulture and other birds to look for land. The vultures fed on carcasses and did not return. A humming bird eventually returned with a leaf. Coxcox landed on a mountain.

Interesting, isn't it?

THE EXTENT OF THE FLOOD

The Flood was certainly not merely a local river overflowing its banks. It was a world catastrophe. In Genesis 6:17, God stated that all life on earth would be destroyed.

And then, after the Flood He gave the following news report:

Every  living  thing  that  moved  on  the  earth  perished - fowls and birds, cattle and other livestock, wild beasts and all the creatures that crawl upon the land, and all mankind. Everything on dry land that had the breath of the spirit of life in its nostrils died.” (Genesis 7:21-22)

The waters were standing above the mountains.”  (Psalm 104:6)

So it could not have been a local flood.

The Flood prevailed over the earth for one year.  Noah and his family were in the ark 377 days (nearly 54 weeks).

A MASSIVE ASTEROID IMPACT

It is believed by many Christian research scientists, that a massive asteroid, travelling at around 100,000 miles per hour, hit the earth in Noah’s day, causing the planet to shake and tilt 18 degrees off its original axis.

(The earth’s tilt was originally 50 to 60.  Today it is tilted at almost 240.  This has been discovered through observing the orbits of moons. All moons orbit their planets in line with their equators.)

The asteroid may have been several hundred kilometres in diameter; and we believe it hit the Earth in the middle of what is now the Pacific Basin - the deepest depression in the world.

The impact, we believe, broke the crust of the earth, causing the tectonics plates that seismologists have been telling us about (see map below). The Scripture says, “the fountains of the great deep burst open.”

Moreover, the asteroid’s explosion on impact, would have caused an immense amount of debris to ricochet back into the atmosphere as millions of missiles, causing the firmament (the layer of water that surrounded the atmosphere - Genesis.l:7) to collapse. The Scriptures refer to this: “The floodgates of the sky were opened.” So huge volumes of water came down, as well as coming up from under the earth.

Notice that the releasing of the underground waters, and the collapse of the atmospheric canopy, occurred on the same day.

The result was a sudden, earth-destroying upheaval which brought about great changes in the geography of the planet.

There is evidence of this sudden catastrophe in various parts of the world. In Alaska, for instance, oil mining companies have discovered tropical forests preserved beneath 2,000 feet of ice. Fossils uncovered in various parts of the world also indicate a sudden upheaval, as do mountain formations, including Petra, and the Grand Canyon in the US.

While visiting the fascinating mountain city of Petra in southern Jordan, I was very interested to hear our Bedouin guide explain that the area was once covered with water. Yes, it was! Petra’s amazing and beautiful multi-layered rock formations were formed, no doubt, by the Great Flood.

The exact day the flood started is recorded in Genesis:

“In  the  600th  year  of  Noah’s  life,  on  the  17th day  of  the second month - on that day all the fountains of the great deep burst open, and the floodgates of the sky were opened; and the rain poured upon the earth for forty days and forty nights.” (Genesis 7:11-12)

The miracle is that anyone survived at all. But Yahweh the Almighty did save one righteous family.

God did not spare the ancient world when He brought a flood upon the world of ungodly people, but preserved Noah, a preacher of righteousness, with seven others.”  (2 Peter 2:5)

The Flood was a result of both a cosmic crash, and the wrath of God.

6

PLATE TECTONICS -  EARTH'S BROKEN CRUST

 

The ancient Japanese believed that earthquakes were caused by the sudden movement of the giant spider that carried the earth on its back. Others regarded quakes as the acts of a vengeful deity. Scientific reasons for earthquakes have varied.

The theory called “Plate Tectonics” has gained wide acceptance over the past few decades. It explains that the surface of the earth consists of the ten major, and several smaller, 70-mile-thick rock plates (see map below).  Many believing scientists believe the Tectonic plates were the result of the massive asteroid impact in Noah’s day.

The plates are currently moving at speeds of a few centimetres a year. Sometimes two plates become temporarily locked in place, and tension and stress builds up where they meet. The sudden release of pent-up energy when they separate, causes massive earthquakes

Off the coast of Japan, for instance, the Pacific plate is thrusting under the Eurasian plate, causing the deep-seated quakes characteristic of the Japanese archipelago. Similarly, in California, along the San Andreas Fault, two great plates are sliding past each other.

              AN EARTHQUAKE FAULT

 

The sliver of California west of the San Andreas fault, which is located on the Pacific plate, is moving toward the north-west. The rest of the state is resting on the North American plate, which is moving westward. The sudden movement of a portion of the fault that had been locked in place for many years is thought to have caused the great San Francisco quake of 1906.

Seismologists are warily eyeing at least two stretches of the San Andreas Fault that seem to be “locked.” One segment, near Los Angeles, has apparently not budged, while other parts of the Pacific and North American plates have slid some 30 feet past each other. Near San Francisco, there is another locked section.

Sooner or later, such segments will catch up with the inexorable movement of the opposing plates. If they do so in one sudden jolt, the resulting earthquakes, probably in the 8 to 9 Richter range and packing the energy of multi-megaton hydrogen bombs, will cause widespread destruction and kill possibly hundreds of thousands of people.

7

THE AMAZING SHIP THAT NOAH BUILT

The ark that Noah built was huge, and in accordance with the instructions of God. It thus had perfect specifications to sustain tidal waves. It was more stable than modern ships, and was designed to simply float.  See details in Genesis 6:14-22.

The ship measured 300 x 50 x 30 cubits. One cubit is believed to be 18 inches. That means, 450 feet x 75 feet x 45 feet. It sank into the water to a depth of 23 feet. The ship had three decks, one door on the side, and a window, one cubit high, evidently running around the top edge of the ark.

The ship was made of Gopher wood which was probably Cypress or Cedar. It was covered with pitch outside and inside.

A vessel of such dimensions would have had a displacement of about 20,000 tons, and gross tonnage of about 14,000 tons. Such a ship had never been built until about the 20th century.

If the ark was a railcar, it could have carried 125,000 sheep.

It is estimated that there were about 17,000 species in existence before the Flood; and some 50,000 animals in the ark.

The vessel could have carried thousands of people also - but alas, only eight people heeded the call of God and took refuge in the Ark - the only place of safety. The rest of the world perished, even as God had warned.

The rain fell for 40 days. The waters "prevailed" - reached their highest point on the 150th day, and then gradually receded. In the seventh month the ask rested on Mt Ararat. In the tenth month the tops of the mountain became visible. After another 40 days, Noah sent out a raven, but as it did not return, he sent out a dove. It did return. After seven days he sent the dove out again. It came back with an olive leaf in its beak. After a further seven days, the dove was sent out, and this time did not return. Shortly after that, God told Noah to disembark.

After one year and ten days on board, the occupants of the Ark came out into a “new world.” 

CHANGE OF GEOGRAPHY,

ENVIRONMENT AND ECOLOGY

The upheaval had completely reshaped the geography of the world. New continents and islands were created. New mountains were thrown up, and the Antarctic region became ice bound.

The environment also was drastically changed.  Before the Flood the earth had a very beneficial environment; it was protected by the water firmament. But after the collapse of the firmament, harmful ultra-violet rays penetrated earth’s atmosphere, and now man could no longer hope to live as long as Methuselah (969 years). His life expectancy was soon reduced to 70 years.

The ecology of the world also was changed, so that not only did man now battle  weeds, he had the new elements of pestilences, plagues, epidemics, floods, cyclones, and earthquakes to contend with.

The sudden impact of the asteroid created fossil fuels which were necessary for the changed environment of the world after the Flood.

Tragically, three generations after the Flood, the descendants of Noah turned from the revelation of Yahweh the Almighty and began to worship “The Queen of Heaven” and Baal. Rejecting the precepts of Almighty God, they became depraved in their minds and behaviour. 

Soon the world became filled once more with violence, immorality, corruption and unbelief. Evil continued right down to the present day, in spite of times of renaissance, reformation, revival, enlightenment and the display of the amazing grace of God.  And in these last days we are witnessing an incredible explosion of evil.

 8                            

AS IT WAS IN THE DAYS OF NOAH

“Just as it happened in the days of Noah,

so it will be also in the days prior to

the return of the Son of Man.”

(Luke 17:26)

The Master referred to Noah’s day in His prophecy concerning the end of this age, and compares the days of His return to the days of Noah. The prophecy:

“For the Son of Man, Y’shua, in His day will be like the lightning, which flashes out of one part of the sky, and shines to the other part of the sky. But first He must suffer many things and be rejected by this generation. Just as it happened in the days of Noah, so it will be also in the days prior to the return of the Son of Man: people were eating, they were drinking, they were marrying, and being given in marriage, until the day Noah entered the ark, and the flood came and destroyed them all.”  (Luke 17:24-27)

The Messiah looks beyond His own suffering and rejection, to the day when He will return to Earth in power and great glory; to the day when His triumphant re-entry will be like lightning; to the day when every eye will see Him. He looks beyond the present evil to the new world, to the establishment of the Kingdom of God where righteousness will reign, and where the knowledge of Yahweh, Almighty God, will cover the earth.

But before the Kingdom can be established and Paradise restored, evil must be judged, the earth must be purged, and a believing remnant prepared to receive the King.

Conditions in the world prior to His return, the Master indicated, would be as they were in the days of Noah.  And not only the conditions; the judgments and results also would be comparable to those in Noah’s day.

This presents us, not merely with a re-occurring phenomenon, but with a serious warning; for our present modern 21st century generation is experiencing a return to the corruption, violence and godlessness of the days of Noah. Worldwide conditions today are as they were in Noah’s day; and soon too, this present generation will experience the fury of the fierce wrath of Almighty God.

CONDITIONS BEFORE THE FLOOD

In His prophecy, the Lord Jesus refers to three things; the people of Noah’s day were eating, drinking and marrying.

“What’s wrong with that?” you might ask. “It’s not unnatural to eat, drink and marry!”

Right, but the Master is indicating here, that people will be self-centred, indifferent to God, and living as though judgment would never come; just like Noah’s generation.

Noah’s generation was blind to the impending flood. They were seemingly ignorant of the fact that the wrath of God was building up into a thick, foreboding cloud of judgment that would burst upon their whole world, and carry them away into eternal damnation.

They were eating and drinking.  “Nothing would happen!” They were certainly not fasting and praying. They were not repenting of their evils; they were enjoying the pleasures of sin. They were certainly not worshipping and praising God. They were marrying as they chose, but they were not sanctifying the lord God in their homes. There was no fear of God in their minds, or love for God in their hearts. In fact, they sensed no need of God, and they laughed at the charge that without Him, they were doomed and eternally lost.

The preaching of Noah, to these deluded sinners, was simply the raving of a deranged mind.

Noah’s generation feared neither the lord nor His warnings. And they had no intention of turning from their wicked ways. Their sin was their joy, their corruption was their pride, and their abominations gave them great satisfaction.

CORRUPTION AND VIOLENCE!

Let’s look at the account of the conditions, in Genesis 6:

“Then YHWH saw how great man’s wickedness on the earth had become, and that every inclination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil all the time . . . Now the earth was corrupt in God’s sight; the earth was full of violence. God looked on the earth, and saw how corrupt it was; for all the people on earth had corrupted their ways.”  (Genesis 6:5,11,12)

What an indictment of Noah’s day! And what a description of our present day! We’re almost there!

“And YHWH was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart.” (Genesis 6:6)

God would not tolerate the earth’s iniquity any longer. Judgment was necessary. Divine Justice demanded it. Corruption warranted it, and Time fulfilled it.

The Flood occurred in about the year BC 2,345.

That was Noah’s day, but we may well ask, “Is God sorry that He made this present 21st century generation?”

When we look at our conditions present, who can say that the nations are not corrupt today?  We are corrupt in every possible way! Take, for instance:

OUR POLITICAL CORRUPTION

While there are still be some honest, devoted, patriotic politicians, and men and women of integrity in politics, the worldwide realm of politics today is one of intrigue, selfishness, pocket-lining, ruthlessness, vested interests and conspiracy. We are all tired of hearing of the deceptions, lies and slogans propagated by opportunists who parade as candidates for honest government. Many leaders profess great concern for the poor, but are forever leading their nations into greater and greater debts and bondage.

America was nearly torn asunder over the corruption that was perpetrated at “Watergate.” President Nixon was forced to resign (the first American President ever to do so).  Vice-President Spiro Agnew resigned earlier, due to other corruption charges.

In Japan, Premier Tanaka resigned due to corruption. Corruption led to the resignation also of Premier (“Mr. Clean”) Miki.

In Holland, Prince Bernard, the consort of the Dutch Crown, was stripped of most of his positions after a corruption scandal in which he was found to have taken a $1 million bribe.

A cover story in TIME magazine (13 July 98), entitled “THE CANCER  OF  CORRUPTION,” highlighted corruption in Japan, Kenya, Nigeria, France, Venezuela, Mexico, Russia, Czech Republic, Spain, Italy, South Korea, Argentina, India, Pakistan, Albania, Zaire, Greece, Bolivia, Colombia, the former Soviet states, Argentina, Vietnam and China.  To which can be added Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Philippines, Malaysia, Indonesia, Yugoslavia and the U.S.A.

In January 2001, Bill Clinton’s presidency ended in scandal, alleged corruption, and a deal in which he paid a $25,000 fine, and accepted the suspension of his Arkansas law license for five years, to escape possible future prosecution. Then he also granted 177 last-minute pardons, including one to billionaire Marc Rich, a fugitive living in Switzerland, who has flouted the US tax and judicial system for the last 20 years. Legislators were investigating if large gifts that were given to the Clinton library, were payments for the pardons.

Corruption is not new

In 1965, Prime Minister Indira Gandhi promised to fight against corruption in high places in India, and said that no offender would go unpunished.

This present author wrote an article at the time, showing from the Bible, the great evil of bribery, and how it is a curse to any nation. A copy was sent to Indira Gandhi, along with a letter congratulating her on her bold proclamation.

In 1972, Jaya Prakash Narayan, India’s renowned corruption fighter, proclaimed that corruption was so deep that it could not be eradicated.

Political corruption in Pakistan, in the form of election rigging in early 1977, caused the deaths of hundreds, and led the country to the brink of civil war.

The nations of the world are falling, one by one, to some form of corrupt political system. 

The three main roots of political corruption are, the love of money, the lust for power, and the pride of position. The Bible says in Job 34:30:

“Godless men should not rule, nor be snares of the people.”

Dictatorships and communism are inherently corrupt. Almighty God intended that national leaders should rule the people, standing in awe of the LORD.  They are charged to protect the freedoms of the people, maintain law and order, guarantee a righteous judicial system, and to punish evildoers.

With this in mind, Paul exhorted us to pray for those in authority

“First of all, then, I urge that petitions, prayers, intercessions and thanksgivings be made for men, for kings and all who are in authority, in order that we may lead a calm and peaceful life in all reverence and seriousness. This type of prayer is good, and is approved by God our Saviour, who wants all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.” (1 Timothy 2:1-4)

So it is right that we pray for rulers. Let’s pray, firstly, that rulers may honour the Eternal One, Yahweh the Almighty; and secondly, that they will seek to lead their nations righteously.

OUR ECONOMIC CORRUPTION

Money in itself is not evil. The Scripture says (1 Timothy 6:10):

“The LOVE of money is a root of all sorts of evil.”

It is often said, “There is nothing that money cannot buy.” Well, I could name a few precious things that money cannot buy; such as, inner peace and joy, true love, the remission of sins, salvation, and a home in heaven.

But money does have tremendous power for those who possess it; and it has a great appeal for those whose hearts are set on riches and possessions.

Economic corruption is the misuse of money, or the manipulation of commodities or conditions, to gain more of the “filthy lucre.” And the nations are more expert than ever these days at minting and manipulating. Cash-strapped governments usually resort to creating more money - either currency notes or invisible “credit cash.” They create non-backed money to “pay the bills,” and the result is the mushrooming national debts and inflation.  Unchecked, this leads to national bankruptcy.

International bankers are the greatest experts at expanding the money supply and saddling nations with debt. Through their subtle financial machinations, and manipulation of interest rates, they can bring down governments, depose of rulers, ruin economies, enslave nations, create wars, and bring untold suffering to millions.

But one need not be an international banker! The local money-lender who gives money on exorbitant interest, is guilty of economic corruption. The traders who hoard essential commodities to create a superficial shortage, and to raise the prices, are guilty.

The milk-supplier who waters down his milk; the grain-merchant who adds stones to his rice; the fruit-vendor who “tops” his piles of fruit with shining samples but puts rotten ones in your bag; the merchant who rigs his scales - all are guilty, as is also the extortionist, the exploiter, the smuggler, and the black-marketeer.

Adulteration is a common word today. An Indian newspaper, some time back, reported that adulterated blood was used by a hospital in Delhi. Another tells of pest poison so adulterated that the pests do not die. Anything and everything is liable to adulteration today - to make more money.

Will God wink at our corruption? Will He say, “No harm!”?

Do we expect to be as corrupt as Noah’s world, and not reap the consequences?  Do we expect to sow thistle seeds, and reap rice? No!  Our corruption will reap a whirlwind. God does not sleep. And God is not mocked!

OUR ENVIRONMENTAL CORRUPTION

You may call it “pollution” if you like, but our environment is becoming more and more corrupt. We pump carbon monoxide into the air; we dump our waste toxins and gases into rivers and oceans.  We’re still not sure what to do with our nuclear waste!

The earth is also polluted by its inhabitants, for they have transgressed the teachings, changed the laws, and broken the everlasting covenant. Therefore a curse devours the earth, and those who live in it are held guilty. Therefore the inhabitants of the earth are burned up, and few men are left.”  (Isaiah 24:5-6)

OUR MORAL CORRUPTION

We pollute the air waves with our frivolity, our lies, profanity, and obscenities. We have polluted “the arts” so that music, drama, film and dance have often become media to corrupt minds and degrade lives.

Television has been fashioned into an instrument to capture the minds of the masses, and to de-sensitize social consciousness concerning violence, immorality and blasphemy. It indoctrinates society with licentiousness, agnosticism and promiscuity, and blinds the masses lest they come to the knowledge of the Living God.

It’s true, there is a little righteousness left, but in general, the 21st century mind has been so corrupted, that now, as in Noah’s day, God declares, “Every intent of the thoughts of man’s heart is only evil continually.”

In the moral corruption of the last forty years, the emphasis has passed far beyond “free love,” to sordid sensuality and sadistic slavery.

Sexual Slavery.  In its February 19, 2001 issue, TIME reported on sex slavery, stating that every year, an estimated 200,000 to 300,000 women are shipped out of the former communist countries of Eastern Europe as sex slaves. Most are forced to work in brothels and night clubs against their will. The women are usually beguiled by offers of well paying jobs overseas, and they end up in slavery in the Balkans, Western Europe and North America.

The dreadful economic conditions in the former-Soviet lands enables traffickers to exploit and deceive the women who end up as property of ruthless men and wretched women.

Abused Children. Way back in 1977, Time magazine (14 April) gave a shocking report of how children as young as eight, were being used in pornographic films and literature. The article told of a couple who sold their 12-year-old son as a sex slave for $3,000. 

A report in February 2001, says about 2 million children worldwide, including toddlers, are being used in the pornography “industry,” and often the wicked traffic in child-abuse includes sadism - torture. 

Child pornography has become so rife on the Internet, that “The Group of Eight” industrialised nations announced in February 2001 that they would give top priority to efforts to combat the spread of paedophilia and racial hatred on the Internet.

Pornography, now a multi-billion dollar business, has passed far beyond nudity and sex, to degradation, perversion and bestiality.

These are the days of gross moral corruption. Of course, not everyone has gutter morals, but the evil influence of pornography is becoming so deep, and so widespread, that standards of society are fast approaching the decadence of Rome, the depravity of the Caananites, and the corruption of Noah’s day.

It is hard to remain morally uncontaminated in today’s global village. It’s hardest for the younger generations for they are being subjected to constant amoral influence, far more than their parents ever were! And yet many parents feel it is a good idea to set children in front of the television set to “keep them out of mischief.”  But then, many parents themselves have become de-sensitized to the moral corruption of this age.

”AS LONG AS HE’S WATCHING TV, HE’S LEARNING SOMETHING.”

Dear parent, whatever you do, don’t let television educate your children - unless per chance you want your children educated in the ways of a godless, Christ-rejecting society.

It is written of Lot, that while living in Sodom, his righteous soul was tormented every day because of the evil and corruption of the city (2 Peter 2:8). What of our “righteous souls” today? Are we vexed by the moral corruption of society today? Or do we take it for granted?

And more important; what of Yahweh, God Almighty?  Shall He say, “Never mind, everyone’s doing it?” Or shall He not fulfil His Word ...

“I will make the land a desolation and a waste because of all their abominations which they have committed.” (Ezekiel 33:29)  ?

OUR RELIGIOUS CORRUPTION

This is perhaps the worst form of corruption - the corruption of that which is considered holy, and sacred. 

It is reprehensible that within the Christian church there are corrupt leaders who demand money for salvation, or money for prayers and miracles.  And they are not all “television evangelists.”  The Bible warns about the love of money:

“But those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap, and many foolish and harmful desires, which plunge men into ruin and destruction.”  (1 Timothy 6:9)

Money cannot buy favour with God.  The apostle Peter replied to a man who wanted to buy the gift of God:

“May your silver perish with you, because you thought you could obtain the gift of God with money! You have no part of portion in this matter, for your heart is not right before God. Therefore repent of this wickedness of yours, and pray the Lord that, if possible, the intention of your heart may be forgiven you.” (Acts 8:20-22)

Peter was emphatic when he wrote later on:

“For you know that it was not with perishable things like silver or gold that you were redeemed from the futile way of life handed down to you from your forefathers, but with the precious blood of the Messiah, a Lamb without blemish or defect.”   (1 Peter 1:18-19)

Let it be emphasised, readers, it is the blood of the Messiah that cleanses from sin! The blood of Christ alone is the basis for our redemption, our salvation, and acceptance by God.

One of the most important commands of the Bible, in both the Old and New Testaments, and which is mandatory for everyone who claims to follow the Word of God, and Jesus Christ, is quoted, by the apostle Peter:

YOU SHALL BE HOLY and SET-APART, FOR I AM HOLY and SET-APART.” (1 Peter 1:16)

“For I am YHWH your God. Sanctify yourselves therefore, and be holy - set apart, for I am holy and set apart ... for I am YHWH who brought you up from the land of Egypt to be your God; thus you shall be holy and set apart, for I am holy and set apart.”  (Leviticus 11:44-45)

The basic meaning of the Hebrew word for “holy” (kadosh), is “set apart” - to be set apart unto God; set apart unto holiness of life; set apart to the will of God.

Here is another form of religious corruption - adulteration of the Word of God. Liberal theological seminaries have been pouring forth a stream of modernistic “pastors” for many decades - men who are have been taught to deny or dilute the fundamental doctrines of the Word of God.

As a result, churches which should be leading souls into peace, salvation and fellowship with God, are leading people into delusion, bondage and a dead end.

The apostle Paul foretells endtime conditions when he says:

“The time will come when people will not tolerate sound doctrine; but to suit their own desires, they will gather more and more teachers around them who will tickle their ears. They will turn away from hearing the truth, and will turn aside and listen to myths.”   (2 Timothy 4:3-4)

The highly respected Anglican Archbishop of Sydney, Harry Goodhew, in a final letter before retirement, brought attention to apostasy. “The church,” he wrote, “would end up in irrelevance if it failed to stick to Bible teaching and the claims of Jesus Christ as the universal Saviour.”

The apostle Paul also warned that in the endtime, many would have a form of godliness or religion, but would deny (or nullify) the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  (2 Thess. 3:5).  Jude, the author of one of the small books in the Bible, also wrote, in verses 17-18:

“But you, beloved, remember the words that were spoken beforehand by the apostles of our Master, Y’shua the Messiah; how they told you, ‘In the last time there shall be scoffers, following after their own ungodly desires’.”    

In many parts of the world, the Person of Jesus Christ is being attacked. Determined to corrupt the truth, literature and films are being produced in an effort to refute the Bible’s teaching that Y’shua is “God manifest in the flesh,” the Saviour of the World.

The vilification of Jesus Christ seeks to strip Him of His Anointing, His Deity, His Holiness, His Atoning Sacrifice, His saving Mission, and His Place of Authority on the Throne of God; and to consign Him to the tomb.

Mortal men seek to debase the Heavenly and Divine - the very Messiah of whom it is written:

"Therefore (because He stooped so low), God exalted Him to the highest place, and gave Him the Name that is above every name, that at the Name of Y’shua every knee should bow  -  in heaven and on earth and under the earth  - and every tongue confess that Y’shua the Messiah is LORD (the  Heavenly  Master),  to  the  glory  of  YHWH,  God  the Father."                      (Philippians 2:9-11)

The central tenet of the Gospel is the atoning work of Christ, by His sacrificial death, and His physical resurrection:

“Now brethren, I again declare to you the Gospel which I have already preached to you - the Good News which you have received, and on which you take your stand; by which also you are being saved, if you hold firmly to the words that I preached as Good News to you - unless you believed in vain.

“For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance, that the Messiah died for our sins, according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, and that He appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. After that He appeared to more than five hundred brethren at one time, most of whom remain until now, but some have fallen asleep; then He appeared to James, then to all the apostles; and last of all, as it were to one untimely born, He appeared to me also.”  (1 Corinthians 15:1-8)

And yet today, there are even “Christian authorities” in various places denying the atoning death, and the resurrection of Y’shua. But Christianity with a dead Saviour, is a dead religion! It would be worthless. The apostle makes it clear:

If Messiah has not been raised, then our preaching is vain, your faith also is vain ... and if Messiah has not been raised, your faith is worthless; you are still in your sins. ... But the fact is that the Messiah has been raised from the dead, and He became the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep - (believers who have died). For since death came into the world through a man, the resurrection of the dead has come also through a Man. For just as all through union with Adam die, so all who are in union with the Messiah will be made alive.” (1 Corinthians 15:14,17, 20-22)

Today, when the world needs the Gospel of Salvation more than ever; when the world needs the Risen Living Saviour more than ever, much of the church, as Archbishop Goodhew said, is irrelevant.  The apostle Paul said:

“Woe to me if I do not preach the Gospel!”  (1 Corinthians 9:16)

Christ is the Head of the church (Ephesians 5:23), and He requires His people to be separate from evil, and from all forms of corruption. The Word of God says:

“Come out of ‘Babylon,’ My people, so that you will not participate in her sins and that you will not receive of her plagues, for her sins have piled up as high as heaven, and God has remembered her depravity and crimes.”  (Revelation 18:4)

The corrupt world of Noah's day perished. And our present corrupt world will also perish. That’s sure! Here’s a final word from Peter:

“The world at that time was destroyed, being flooded with water. But the present heavens and earth by His word are being reserved for fire, kept for the day of judgment and destruction of ungodly men.” (2 Peter 3:6-7)

VIOLENCE

A major condition of Noah’s day was universal violence. Man had become cruel, ruthless, inhumane, and violent.

And what of our societies today? Civil wars, guerilla warfare, terrorism, ethnic cleansing, attrition, assassinations, genocide, purges, coups, hijackings, robberies, waylaying, bashings, and gang rape!

Yes, it’s true, violence is the “history of man.” From the slaying of Abel by his brother, Cain, to the genocide in World War 2, violence and war has been the preferred option of man in “solving” his major social problems. Some say, it’s the only option!  How can we say 21st century man has improved?

The genocide that our present generation has witnessed in Cambodia, Burma, China, Tibet, Rwanda, Sudan, Darfur, Bosnia, Kosovo and Indonesia, is certainly not new. But what makes it so appalling is the fact that mankind is more educated that ever before; it is more technological; more people today have better living conditions than kings had 100 years ago; man has more opportunities for information, convenience, travel, entertainment, communication and better health than at any time in history.

Today many travel in one week further than their grandfathers travelled in their whole lifetimes. More nations in the world today are committed to democracy; more nations helps other nations in need; more nations are committed to human rights; more nations have freedom to worship and to pursue personal goals than ever before. 

We now watch world events “live”; we communicate instantly with people on the other side of the globe; our working conditions have improved considerably; and the majority all share in the world’s extended life expectancy. 

And yet, we are producing a disturbingly violent society.

A WORLD OF ETHNIC CONFLICT

In 1998 there were 27 major conflicts going on around the world. And most of them are still going on.  This is an age of ethnic conflict.

At the time I write, (2001), ethnic violence is going on in Kalimantan, Indonesia, as Dayaks drive Madunese out of the province.  Hundreds of Madunese have been butchered to death, and tens of thousands have fled the carnage, to Java.

In the last ten years, nearly two million people have been killed in southern Sudan, and in recent times, some of the most horrific massacres have taken place in Cambodia, Burma, Rwanda, Bosnia, Kosovo, Lebanon, Afghanistan, Kurdistan, Algeria, Sierra Leone, Angola, Sri Lanka, Ethiopia and Eritrea. And these are not the only violent nations there are!

Ethnic violence is taking place also in Fiji, the Solomons, Papua New Guinea, the Philippines, East India, Kashmir, Pakistan, Russia, Chechnya, Azerbaijan, Armenia, Albania, Syria, Iraq, Turkey, Ireland, Spain, Congo and other parts of Africa, and in Colombia, Ecuador and other parts of South America.

Moreover, the seeds of ethnic violence have been sown in just about every country in the world.

In a brutal civil war in Sierra Leone (N Africa), thousands of people including children have had hands, arms or feet chopped off.

In Bangladesh hundreds of women are disfigured for life by acid, thrown on their faces by their husbands.

In India, 30,000 murders are committed every year, including thousands of brides who are burned to death by their own husbands or families.

In the United States it is 25,000 murders a year. And yet the US is not on top of the most violent industrialised nations.

 

CRIME VICTIMS SURVEY

According to the International Crime Victims Survey (Feb 2001), conducted by Leiden University in Holland, Australia topped the list of industrialised nations for violent crime. 30% of its population were victimised by crime. 

England and Wales ranked second with 26% of the population victimised.

Next came Holland (25%), Sweden (25%), and Canada (24%).

The US was a further down the scale at 21%.    (Source: WorldNetDaily.com)

In Australia, crime is a major political and social issue. The cities are increasingly violent. People are attacked on the street. Homes are broken into, and the occupants, particularly the elderly, are ravaged. Women as old as 90 have been raped. 

An awful case in Perth recently was that of a 24-year-old man who has been charged with raping a toddler aged 8 months. A deranged mind? Maybe, but there’s so much “insane” brutality these days that it seems that “men have lost their reason.”

The newspapers are full of reports of violence. Television is full of violence - both real, and acted. There is no end to it. The mafia promotes it; pornography encourages it; drugs increase it; godless ideologies propagate it; and the love of money breeds it.

Violence is the produce of pride and prejudice. It’s the offspring of greed and gossip; and the fruit of impatience and impropriety. Violence lies in the bosom of bigotry and bitterness, and simmers in the arms of animosity and antagonism. It lurks in the ravines of revenge, stalks the streets of selfishness, and festers in the fissures of intemperance and intolerance. XYZ.  It’s everywhere.

Night is its favourite season, but violence by day is now as brazen as the midday sun.

Snuff Movies

X-rated films have been produced in which an actor or actress is actually murdered - and not by accident. A hideous painful death is captured on film to feed the most sadistic appetites of a section of society that has sunk to the rock bottom of depravity.

The gladiators of ancient Rome was an honorable sport when compared with the 20th century “entertainment” in which an actor or actress is strapped to a table and made to scream while being cut to pieces. Such are called, “snuff movies.”

If the brutal slaying of an actress shocks you, dear reader, what about the fact that every year 50 million babies are brutally slaughtered in their mothers’ wombs before they can even cry?

In China and India we have selective foeticide - wiping out the unwanted female foetuses.

“Oh!” the moderns say, “That’s the mother’s right.” And no doubt, if there were no law against it, many would choose to kill their parents, their teenage kids, or their neighbours.

WHY DOESN'T GOD DO SOMETHING?

“Why does God allow it?” some people ask. “Why doesn’t He do something to arrest all this wickedness? Has He stepped down as the universal, Supreme Justice?”

No, not at all! He is still the Judge of all the Earth. God will do something, soon!  The Day has been fixed!

“God now commands all people everywhere to repent, because He has fixed a day in which He will judge the world in righteousness through a Man, Y’shua the Messiah, whom He has appointed, having furnished proof to all by raising Him from the dead.”   (Acts 17: 30-31)

9                               

A DAY OF JUDGMENT AHEAD!

The day is appointed! It is the Great Tribulation. And we see from signs all around us, that time is fast running out. But how many heed the command of God?

INDIFFERENCE, UNBELIEF, AND RIDICULE !

This attitude of many today is exactly the same as the attitude of the people of Noah’s day.

“Let us eat, drink, and be merry. Let us marry and give in marriage. Let us en- joy. Let us plant and build. Let us make ourselves a name. Let us create for ourselves a world of our choice. As for that man Noah, he’s a misguided radical! He’s a raving maniac. He froths at the mouth, and utters incoherent nonsense.

“His diatribes about sin, righteousness and judgment are just the dying words of a fanatical fool. We should put him away - but he does provide a good laugh; and that fantastic vessel he is building gives the children some entertainment. ... But wrath? God’s wrath?  Now come on!  Who and what and where is God that He should be concerned with us? Don’t talk of something we can’t see, handle and explain ...”

And so it is today; the scoffing goes on.

“We are now in a scientific age. We are educated, sophisticated, and masters of our world. See, we have landed on the moon, and placed out spacecraft on an asteroid 340 million miles away.  With our computers we have become omniscient! We don’t need God; we need to be liberated from all religious rhetoric and restraint.”

Ah! Are these not the ravings of men, who like rash beginners on skis, plough uncontrolled down steep snowy slopes, unable to stop till they fall headlong into destruction?

Knowing not the dangers of idle words and vain reasonings, nor even the premise, “speak less and listen more,” the sceptic and scoffer has his ears blocked to the words of Almighty God.  The Bible says:

“The fool has said in his heart, ‘There is no God.’ They are corrupt, and have committed most wicked deeds. There is no one who does good.”   (Psalm 53:1)

The heady and high-minded boast in their arrogance that they are in a position to repudiate the Word of God, and to decide their own destiny.

“The wicked boasts of his heart’s desire. He blesses the greedy and reviles YHWH. The wicked, in his pride and haughtiness, does not seek Him. All his thoughts are, ‘There is no God’.”  (Psalms 10:3-4)

“In the days of Noah, the patience of God waited during the construction of the ark.”  (1 Peter 3:20)

But the time came when the door was closed, and then ...

 “God ... did not spare the ancient world when He brought a flood upon the world of ungodly people, but preserved Noah, a preacher of righteousness, with seven others.” (2 Peter 2:5)

“Every living thing that moved on the earth perished - fowls and birds, cattle and other livestock, wild beasts and all the creatures that crawl upon the land, and all mankind; everything on dry land that had the breath of the spirit of life in its nostrils died. Thus He wiped out every living thing that was upon the face of the earth, from man to animals to creeping things and birds of the sky. They were wiped from off the earth, and only Noah was left, and those that were with Him in the ark.” (Genesis 7:21-24)

The lessons of the Great Flood, however, falls on deaf ears today.  Forever talking of their future, and boasting of their folly, today’s God-despisers have no time to read the true description of their present fixation, nor of their fate, which has been engraved in the eternal and unchangeable Word of God.

“The Lord knows how to rescue the godly out of temptation and trials, and how to keep the unrighteous under punishment until the Day of Judgment, and especially those who indulge the flesh in its corrupt desires and despise authority. Daring, self-willed, they do not tremble when they revile angelic majesties ... reviling where they have no knowledge.

“They count it a pleasure to revel in the day time. They are stains and blemishes, revelling in their deceptions, as they carouse with you; having eyes full of adultery and that never cease from sin; enticing unstable souls, having a heart trained in greed, accursed children; forsaking the right way they have gone astray, having followed the way of Balaam, the son of Beor, who loved the wages of unrighteousness, but he received a rebuke for his own transgression; for a dumb donkey, speaking with a voice of man restrained the madness of the prophet.

“These are springs without water, and mists driven by a storm, for whom the black darkness has been reserved.  For speaking out arrogant words of vanity they entice by flesh desires, by sensuality, those who barely escape from the ones who live in error, promising them freedom while they themselves are slaves of corruption.”  (2 Peter 2:9-19)

Not standing in awe of the Holy One, these daring ones reply to the Almighty:

“What is Your Word to us? We do not need to take note of divine demands.  Let us alone! Don’t talk to us of judgment and retribution. If you are God, then you keep to your realm, and we will keep to ours.”

“There is no fear of God before their eyes.” (Romans 3:18)

But ... “God is not a man, that He should lie, nor a son of man that He should change His mind! Does He declare and then do nothing? Or does He promise, and not fulfil?” (Numbers 23:19)

“Then YHWH said, ‘My Spirit will not strive with man for ever, for he is indeed flesh – corrupt ’.”  (Genesis 6:3)

“YHWH the LORD is not slow concerning His promise, as some understand slowness, but is patient toward you, not wanting anyone to perish, but for everyone to come to repentance. But the Day of YHWH will come (unexpected) like a thief in the night, in which the heavens will disappear with a roar; and the elements will be destroyed with intense heat, and the earth and its works will be burned up.”  (2 Peter 3:9-10)

Soon man’s indifference will turn to anxiety, his unbelief to remorse, and his ridicule to a plea for mercy. Soon their cry will be to the mountains and to the rocks:

“Fall  on  us  and  hide  us  from  the  Presence  of  Him  (the Almighty) who sits on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb, for the great day of His wrath has come; and who is able to stand before it?” (Revelation 6:16-17)

BEFORE JUDGMENT, GOD WARNS

Be sure, the Great Flood did not come upon the old world without warning. That wicked, doomed generation was warned by God, again and again.

Noah was not only a ship builder, he was a preacher of righteousness. He let sinners know, in no uncertain terms, that wickedness would bring the wrath of the Almighty upon the world, and that a flood was surely coming.

Note that after being commanded to build the ark, Noah spent one hundred years on the work.  Why, I ask, did it take so long to build?

One reason was because the ship was so huge.

A second reason was probably the shortage of workmen. (Who was going to be laughed at for helping the crazy old man on such a daft project?) 

A third reason was because Noah spent so much time preaching and warning of the coming judgment.

The tragedy is that even though Noah faithfully persevered in preaching righteousness and coming judgment, his message was not heeded. Even a week before the flood came, men were still scoffing and rejecting his warning.

 

10                            

PREACHERS OF RIGHTEOUSNESS

NOAH was not the first or only preacher and prophet of righteousness. One of the ancient prophets was Noah’s great-grandfather . . .

ENOCH

Of  this godly preacher, it is written:

“Enoch, in the seventh generation from Adam, prophesied of these: ‘Look, the LORD is coming with thousands upon thousands of His holy ones, to execute judgment upon all, and to convict all the ungodly of all their ungodly deeds which they have done in an ungodly way, and of all the harsh things which ungodly sinners have spoken against Him’.”  (Jude 14-15)

Enoch was evidently the first prophet to tell of the judgment that would take place at the Second Coming of the Messiah. His prophecy was a clear warning that ungodly deeds would bring Divine judgment upon the world.

 

METHUSELAH

 

 Enoch, at the birth of his son Methuselah, made a specific prophecy by calling his boy by this unusual name. And it certainly was unusual, for “Methuselah” means, “when he dies the waters will come.”

Enoch was, in fact, prophesying that the flood would come to judge the world shortly after the death of his Methuselah.

Many times the young fellow must have been embarrassed by his name. Can you imagine him being enrolled in school, and the teacher asking him, “What’s your name?”? To which young Met would reply in a nervous little voice, “When I die, the waters will come.”

Can you imagine the ridicule, the laughter and the abuse he must have received? Just name your child Methuselah today, and see how it goes!

Everyone knows the expression, “as old as Methuselah.” It comes, of course, from the fact that Methuselah was the oldest man who ever lived. He died at the age of 969 years. (Genesis 5:27). And the year he died was the very year of the Great Flood.  (See Genesis 5:25,28 & 7:6, and chart below)

The prophecy of his name was fulfilled exactly.

Enoch, the man who so closely walked with God, was taken to Heaven long before the flood - when Methuselah was a young man of three hundred years. (Genesis 5:21-24)

Enoch was one of the two men in Scripture who went to Heaven without dying. The other was Elijah. Both men were caught up to heaven, in a way that is similar type to the endtime Rapture when Y’shua, Jesus, catches all His true people up to heaven. It’s prophesied:

“For the Master Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet call of God. Then the dead in Christ - those who died in union with the Messiah - shall rise first. Then we, the living believers who remain, will simultaneously be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Master in the air. And so we will be with the Master for ever.”  (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17)

In fact, the catching up of Enoch before the flood, is a scriptural type of the church (the corporate body of believers who belong to Christ) who will be caught up to meet the Saviour before the Great Tribulation.

969 YEARS IS NO JOKE!

Now, have you ever wondered why Methuselah lived so long?  969 years is no joke! Whoever would want to live that long? And even though godly men did live to great ages in those days, surely 969 was stretching the limit.

It was because of the patience, love, and long-suffering grace of God. When Methuselah dies, the Lord must send the judgment; so God kept Met alive as long as possible to give the people a chance to repent and be saved. As we read in I Peter 3:20, “the patience of God kept waiting in the days of Noah.”

I don’t suppose Met wanted to live so long. I can well imagine that after his father was caught up to the heavenly mansions, Methuselah was rather keen to go too. When Methuselah was 369 years, his grandson Noah was born. When Methuselah was 400 years, he must have been praying, “God, I’ve had enough of this world. Take me home, Lord.” 

And God must have replied. “No, no, Methuselah, for when you die, I must send the flood.”

At 500 years of age, Met must have been complaining, “Lord, take me home, please. I’m a half millennium. I’m getting too old. Look Lord, I’ve got no teeth left.”

“No, no, Methuselah, not yet. I must give these doomed souls a little longer to repent. I’m a merciful God.”

At 600 years Methuselah must have been rather blind. He must have been longing for release from his house of clay. But no! God was still striving with men.

Seven hundred, eight hundred years - by this time Methuselah must have thought that he would never leave this world. He must have felt a real prisoner in his frail body. And yet he knew  that  his  father  had  prophesied  his  death  and  the waters of judgment.

Methuselah had watched the deteriorating conditions in the world. He saw the increase of wickedness, the explosion of corruption, and saw morality sink to rock bottom.

When he was about 869 years old, Methuselah saw the arrival of his three great grandsons- Shem, Ham, and Japheth (the sons of Noah). He must have been praying that these three babies would grow up straight. And he had hopes that they would, for they did have a godly father.

Methuselah must have been losing hope for the rest of his tribes - he had other sons and daughters besides Lamech. And Lamech had other sons and daughters besides Noah. And just about all of the tribe had gone the way of the world. They had all become unprofitable. They all got caught up in this marrying-building-planting-eating-drinking-enjoying business. None of them had time for God. 

THE GENERATIONS - ENOCH TO JAPHETH

Lamech died when he was 777 years old, and now Noah was Methuselah’s one hope. And if Noah and his three youngsters would follow on to know Yahweh the Almighty LORD, there was hope that at least a remnant would be saved.

About that time Noah started building the ark. God had a plan and a provision to save a remnant. “Yes,” thought Methuselah, “the time of my departure is drawing near. As soon as that ark is completed, I can expect to leave.  I am one person who would sure appreciate a berth in that ship, but I must go first. The waters won’t come till I have gone. But now things are taking shape.”

I can imagine old Methuselah adding his toothless voice to Noah’s, to give an urgent warning of the impending judgment. But who would listen to” the ancient one”? If they would not listen to Noah, how would they listen to a man going on 1000 years.

I can well imagine some young freak aged 50 years, just out of college, standing on a soap box and denouncing the madness of the prophets. “What we need today, is some new modern thought,” he would cry. “We must build a new world order. We must do this and that. We must do whatever we feel like - but let us be rid, once and for all, of this superstitious nonsense about God, hell and judgment. Reason tells you it is absurd. Scientific fact tells you it is bogus. Education tells you it is mythical. And besides, we don’t want it anyway. We want to enjoy ourselves.”

“Cheers, cheers!” says the crowd.

But Noah still kept on hammering the nails into his wood. The ark was taking shape. The length of the ship was 450 feet. Its breadth was 75 feet, and its height 45 feet, (maybe not quite the dimensions of the “Queen Mary”, but Noah’s ship was not intended to sail the seas - it was just meant to float.)

The ship was built with three decks, so that all the animals could be accommodated.

Modern sceptics have objected, saying that two of each species of animals and seven pairs of all clean species could never have fitted into this ark. But computations have shown that there was not only sufficient room, but space to spare. Space was available also for many, many, human beings.

When Methuselah was 964 years, he saw his son Lamech pass on into eternity.

Now that the ark was about finished, Met was expecting his home-call at any time. By this time though, he may have been looking forward to his 1000th birthday, and to being the first man ever, to attain to a millennium.

“Sorry Methuselah! The appointed time is 969 years - not a year more, and not a year less. God’s wrath will tolerate evil for one moment longer. Methuselah, you are now 969 years - come on, my son, come up home now!”

So Methuselah died. Then Noah gave his last call to the decadent society. It continued to scoff. So finally Noah called the animals.

How Noah got a whole zoo into the ark in one day, I do not know. But God was with him. The fact that we can visit a zoo today, is evidence of Noah’s success in preserving the wild life. (See Genesis 7:13-16) 

It was God who closed the door behind them. The day of grace was over! The invitation was over. The open door was closed.  Time up! Now it was too late for anyone else to be saved!

Can you feel the tragedy, my dear reader, of that closed door? The ark was the only provision in the whole world for people to be saved. But now the door was shut.

Oh it will be like that in a near future day, when the Lord Jesus calls His people home. Once more, the door of grace will be closed!  Can you anticipate the agony, the anxiety, the despair, the cries of those left behind?

“Lord, Lord, open up for us,” they will wail. But He will answer, “Too late. Too late! I do not know you. You have had your chance. For long ages, I pleaded with you, but you spurned My love and My grace. It’s too late!”

Oh these words will spell the death knell for multitudes on that day, and plunge souls into depths of despair.  “Give us another chance,” they will wail. But it will be too late. The Lord has given every chance, but for men whose hearts are bent on iniquity, even an hour’s extension of grace, would be abused and utilised for riotous living and treachery.

“But,” some will suggest, “if God simply closed the door, and then opened it again for a short time, multitudes would flock into the kingdom.”

No, my friend, they would not flock in, even though God gave them a “second chance,” or a “third chance.”  Rather, like the hardened Pharaoh of old, they would continue to pursue their evil course.

The door of the ark was closed!  The window at the top of the ship was closed.

Can you imagine the terror of those outside the ark as they observed an awesome object enlarging in the sky? For seven days a gigantic asteroid began to fill the sky. Day by day the light was increasingly blocked out until total darkness covered the land.  Meteorites began to pellet the earth, shaking the cities and turning them into infernos. 

The ark was no longer open.  Now it was too late. The cries of the doomed people, and the noise of their fists bashing on the ark, and their cries calling on Noah to open the door went unheard, as the sky came down, and the earth was shaken to its very foundations.  As the Scriptures say:

“All the fountains of the great deep burst open, and the floodgates of the sky were opened.”  (Genesis 7:11)

The waters surged around the ark. Even the highest trees were no refuge. The terror-stricken people slipped one by one into the tempestuous waters. Those who managed to flee to the mountains could find not refuge for long, for the surging waters pursued and sucked them into a muddy grave.

The highest hills were covered by about twenty-three feet of water, and all life on earth perished, except for one family, and the collection of animals on board.

Now my friend, hadn’t God warned those people who perished? Had He not warned them for nearly a thousand years? Had He not striven with them? Or was He an annihilationist? No! Just like He does today, He cried out from a longing heart ...

“Do I have any pleasure in the death of the wicked, rather than that he should turn from his ways and live?”  (Ezekiel 18:23)

The saving grace of God is a major thread going throughout the Scripture, for God made man for Himself. But if man will NOT accept deliverance, then he must perish.

Now, as our present generation is soon to be judged, God is giving men an adequate warning. He is doing that today. The disastrous earthquakes, cyclones, floods, famines and plagues, are warnings of the wrath that is to come.

11

 

THE GREAT TRIBULATION

God has been giving clear warnings of the coming Tribulation judgment, for the last three thousand years.  It’s no secret. It’s in black and white, in numerous prophecies of Scripture. Look at some of them:

Isaiah 13 is a chapter that speaks about the Day of the LORD, the end times. The Day of the LORD begins with the Great Tribulation, and goes on into the time when the Messiah reigns in righteousness.

“Wail, for the day of YHWH is near! It will come as destruction from the Almighty. Therefore all hands will fall limp, and every man’s heart will melt. They will be terrified; pains and anguish will take hold them; they will writhe like a woman in labour; they will look aghast at one another, their faces aflame.

“Behold, the day of YHWH is coming; cruel, with fury and burning anger, to make the land a desolation; and He will exterminate its sinners from it. For the stars of heaven and their constellations will not flash forth their light. The sun will be dark when it rises, and the moon will not shed its light.

“Thus I will punish the world for its evil, and the wicked for their iniquity; I will also put an end to the arrogance of the proud, and abase the haughtiness of the ruthless. I will make mortal man scarcer than pure gold, and mankind more rare than the gold of Ophir.  Therefore I shall make the heavens tremble; and the earth will be shaken from its place at the fury of YHWH of Hosts, in the day of His burning anger ... Their little ones will also be dashed to pieces before their eyes; their houses will be plundered and their wives ravished.” (Isaiah 13:6-13, 16)

“Thus says the Lord YHWH, ‘Wail, Alas for the day, for the day is near; even the day of the YHWH is near. It will be a day of clouds, a time of doom for the nations’.”    (Ezekiel 30:2-3)

“Blow  a  trumpet  in  Zion,  and  sound  an  alarm  on  My  holy mountain! Let all the inhabitants of the land tremble, For the day of YHWH is coming; surely it is near; a day of clouds and gross darkness.  As the dawn is spread over the mountains, so there is great and mighty people coming. There has never been anything like it, nor will there ever be in the ages to come.” (Joel 2:1-2)

“Alas, you who are longing for the day of YHWH; for what purpose will the day of YHWH be to you? It will be darkness and not light.” (Amos 5:18)

“The great day of YHWH is near, It is near and coming very quickly. Listen, the day of YHWH! In it the warrior cries out bitterly. That day is a day of wrath, a day of trouble and distress, a day of destruction and desolation, a day of darkness and gloom, a day of clouds and thick darkness.”   (Zephaniah 1:14-15)

“For I will gather all the nations against Jerusalem to fight against it ... then YHWH will go out and fight against those nations, as He fights in the day of battle.”  (Zechariah 14:2, 3)

“Surely the day is coming, burning like a furnace; and all the arrogant and every evildoer will be chaff; and the day that is coming will set them ablaze, says YHWH of Hosts, so that it will leave them neither root nor branch.”         (Malachi 4:1)

“For then there will be a great tribulation, such as has never occurred since the beginning of the world until now, and there will be nothing like it again. And if those days were not shortened, no one would survive.”                                 (Matthew 24:21-22)

“For you yourselves know very well that the Day of YHWH the LORD will come just like a thief in the night. While they are saying, ‘Peace and safety!’ then destruction will come upon them suddenly like birth pangs upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape.”  (1 Thessalonians 5:2-3)

“By the same word the present heavens and earth are reserved for fire, being kept for the day of judgment and destruction of ungodly men. But the day of YHWH the LORD will come (unexpected) like a thief in the night, in which the heavens will disappear with a roar; and the elements will be destroyed with intense heat, and the earth and its works will be burned up.” (2 Peter 3:7, 10)

 “Look! The Judge is standing right at the door.”  (James 5:9)

 

12

THE SECOND SHAKING

“For thus says YHWH of Hosts, ‘In a little while I will once more shake the heavens and earth, the sea and the dry land. And I will shake all the nations’.”  (Haggai 2:6-7)

Scientists are saying the planet is already sitting in the middle of a “shooting gallery.”  They are more right than they realise, as we also will realise as we look at a very specific prophecy concerning the stars falling.

The apostle John has recorded the visions and prophecies given him by the Messiah. These are some of the fullest and most vivid descriptions of the wrath of God that’s to come upon this world.

Chapter 6 introduces the seven years of worldwide disaster. In this chapter we have also the shaking of the planet - the result of a bombardment of asteroids.  This is during the first half of the Tribulation. John writes:

“I watched as He opened the sixth seal; and there was a great earthquake; and the sun turned black as sackcloth made of hair, and the whole moon became blood-red; and the stars of the sky fell to earth, as a fig tree casts its unripe figs when shaken by a strong wind. The sky vanished like a scroll being rolled up; and every mountain and island were moved out of its place.

“Then the kings of the earth, the great men, the generals, the rich, the mighty, and every slave and free man hid themselves in the caves and among the rocks of the mountains. They called to the mountains and to the rocks, ‘Fall on us and hide us from the Presence of Him (the Almighty) who sits on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb; for the great day of His wrath has come; and who is able to stand before it?’”  (Revelation 6:12-17)

The expression, “the sky vanished like a scroll being rolled up,” is to do with the shaking of the Universe. This upheaval causes the stars to strike the earth.

The stars here are undoubtedly asteroids, meteorites, or comets. And notice, it’s not just a single, stray asteroid. It’s a bombardment. The stars here are likened to a fig-laden tree that’s shaken in a strong gale. The “figs” wallop the earth, so that even the great men cry out in terror, seeking death to escape the wrath of God.

Yes, the people at that time will recognise that it is the wrath of Yahweh coming upon the earth, and not just a natural calamity. They will begin to realise that they are on the losing side; that they are sinners in the hands of the Almighty God. They will realise that things will never be the same again. Time is up. It’s now the judgment time!

The prophet Isaiah uses harsh words when he says:

“Look! The day of YHWH is coming, cruel, with fury and burning anger, to make the land a desolation; and He will exterminate its sinners from it.”  (Isaiah 13:9)

That’s a hard word, isn’t it? Exterminate!” God is going to exterminate the sinners from off the face of the earth. You may say, “Why should God exterminate people?  He only has created us! So why should He seek to exterminate us from off the face of the earth?”

Good question! You do recognise, don’t you, that we are sinners, one and all? We have sinned against the Holy, Eternal Sovereign. We have sinned by our words, thoughts and deeds. Our standards have become corrupt. Our morals are corrupt, our speech is perverted, and our dealings are perverse. We utilise cunning as though it was the source of wisdom. We stockpile missiles of slander, hatred and deceit to defend ourselves from the rockets of treachery manufactured in our neighbour’s backyard.

We paint our faces with religiosity, and grease our hands with “charity,” to make a  show of “righteousness” before the Almighty, and before anyone else who might be observing us. And our lives are so selfish, proud and conceited that we would even deem ourselves worthy to tell God what to do. We take delight in ungodliness, and teach others to do likewise. We say, “every man for himself,” and we slave to make others bend to our wills.

We take the law into our own hands, and become a law to ourselves. We change good to evil, and evil to good. Righteousness, we mock at it; filth, we revel in it. Lies; we use them like a carpenter uses nails. Murder, rape and violence; it’s alright as long as you get away with it!

Alcohol, drugs and nicotine are assets to help calm ourselves, and to reinforce us for our continuous round of “give me, give me.” This is our 21st century society in general.

Oh my people, hear the Word of the LORD!  THE GREAT TRIBULATION IS THE JUDGMENT TIME - the judgment of this sin-sodden generation. Another writer has described our present age as, THE TERMINAL GENERATION.

I’m fully aware that judgment is not a popular subject, but I must declare what God has declared:

“Therefore having overlooked the times of ignorance, God now commands all people everywhere to repent (that is, to change their minds and to amend their ways with abhorrence for their sins), because He has fixed a day in which He will judge the world in righteousness through a Man whom He has appointed, having furnished proof to all men by raising Him from the dead.” (Acts 17:30-31)

 

13

THE EARTH WILL BE SPLIT THROUGH

The Almighty says He is going to shake the heavens and the earth. He’s going to make the heavens tremble, and the earth will be shaken from its place. And the sun will be darkened.

In Isaiah 24, we have another shocking prophecy concerning the shaking of the heavens and the earth. Again it is speaking about this Day of Yahweh the LORD, the Great Tribulation:

“Whoever flees at the sound of terror will fall into a pit, and he who climbs out of the pit will be caught in a snare; for the windows above are opened, and the foundations of the earth shake. The earth is broken asunder. The earth is split through. The earth is shaken violently. The earth reels to and fro like a drunkard, and it totters like a shack, for its transgression is heavy upon it, and it will fall, and not  rise again.” (Isaiah 24:18-20)

THE INCREASE OF EARTHQUAKES

Can you imagine the earth splitting in two? On September 1, 1975, TIME magazine had a cover article called “Earthquake.” Depicted on the front cover was the earth split through. The article spoke about seismologists’ predictions of an ultimate earthquake for California. which they say, is already overdue.

Below there’s a listing of some of the world’s major earthquakes, and the approximate damage in terms of lives lost. The increase became very evident in the second half of the 20th century.

You will notice that the most intense quakes have not always taken the most lives. There have been many other great earthquakes which are not listed because they have taken fewer lives.

             SOME OF THE WORLD’S GREATEST QUAKES 

        856    GREECE                                             killed         45,000           

      1556    CHINA                                               killed       830,000

      1737    CALCUTTA                                       killed       300,000

      1755    LISBON                                             killed         60,000

      1819     GUJARAT                      8.0              killed           2,000

      1883    DURCH INDIES                                killed         36,000

      1897    Shillong Plateau         8.7              killed              542

      1902    MARTINIQUE                                   killed         40,000

      1905    HIMALAYAS                  8.0              killed         20,000           

      1906    SAN FRANCISCO         8.3              killed              700

      1908    ITALY                              9.0             killed       100,000

      1915    ITALY                                                killed         29,900

      1920    CHINA                                               killed       180,000

      1922    JAPAN                              7.9             killed       143,000

      1927    CHINA                                                killed       200,000

      1932    CHINA                                                killed         70,000

      1933    JAPAN                              8.1             killed           3,064

      1934    INDO-NEPAL                 8.3              killed         10,000

      1935    INDIA                               7.6             killed         30,000

      1939    CHILE                                                 killed         30,000

      1939    TURKEY                                             killed         23,000

      1950    ASSAM                             8.5             killed              532

      1960    MOROCCO                                        killed         12,000

      1960    CHILE                               9.5**         killed       2-5,000

      1962    IRAN                                                   killed         10,000

      1964    ALASKA                          8.4              killed              114

      1968    IRAN                                                   killed         11,500

      1970    PERU                                                   killed         66,700

      1972    IRAN                                 7.9             killed           5,000

      1976    CHINA                                                killed       750,000

      1978    IRAN                                                   killed         25,000

      1980    ALGERIA                         7.5              killed         20,000

      1988    ARMENIA                       6 - 7            killed         25,000

      1990    IRAN                                 7.7             killed         40,000

      1993    MAHARASHTRA           6.4               killed        7,600+

      1999    TURKEY                          7.4              killed         20,000

      2001    GUJARAT                        7.9              killed         30,000

      2003    BAM, IRAN                     6.5              killed        41,000

      2003    JAPAN                              8.3             killed              ???

      2004    INDONESIA                    9.0              killed       150,000  (and tsunami)

      2005    PAKISTAN/Kashmir        7.6              killed         74,000

      2008    CHINA                             8.0              killed         90,000

                        ** World’s biggest recorded quake.

In 1964, the Alaska earthquake took only 114 lives, but it was one of the strongest quakes ever measured, with a magnitude of 8.4 on the Richter scale. It was felt as far away as India.

The 6.8 earthquake in February 2001, in Washington State, although it caused several billion dollars worth of damage, took only a few lives. A quake of about the same intensity in 1988 in Armenia killed 25,000 people.

At the beginning of the 20th century, there was on the average, one major earthquake every two to three years. Now we have at least eighteen 7.9 quakes, and up to a hundred major earthquakes, and tens of thousands of smaller quakes and tremors every year. Many large quakes are often not reported in the news media because they do not strike populated areas.

DIVINE VISITATIONS

Although scientific reasons may be given for earthquake occurrence, it is God who “upholds all things by the word of His power” (Hebrews 1:3), and no event can occur outside His permission. Earthquakes are sometimes “acts of judgment.” Sometimes they may be described as “acts of warning.”

In 1750, Thomas Sherlock, the Bishop of London maintained that two earthquakes at that time were warnings so that Londoners should atone for their sins.

In a letter of 1777, John Wesley wrote, “There is no divine visitation which is likely to have so general an influence upon sinners as an earthquake.”

The ultimate earthquake is ahead, and I expect it will blow the top off the Richter Scale.  Here's the prophecy:

“Then there were flashes of lightning and sounds and peals of thunder; and there was a great earthquake, such as there had not been since man came to be upon the earth, so great an earthquake was it, and so mighty.  The great city was split into three parts, and the cities of the nations collapsed. And God remembered Babylon the Great and gave her the cup filled with the wine of His furious wrath and indignation. And every island fled away, and the mountains could not be found.”    (Revelation 16:18-20)

 

     

14

THE SUN TURNED to BLACKNESS,

and the MOON to BLOOD

 

There’s also this phenomenon prophesied in Revelation 6:12:

“I watched as He opened the sixth seal; and there was a great earthquake; and the sun turned black as sackcloth made of hair, and the whole moon became blood-red.” 

Several Old Testament prophets foretold this disastrous endtime phenomenon: Isaiah said:

“For the stars of heaven and their constellations will not flash forth their light. The sun will be dark when it rises, and the moon will not shed its light.”  (Isaiah 13:10)

The prophet Joel in describing “The Day of Yahweh the LORD,” tells of this same upheaval:

“Blow a trumpet in Zion, and sound an alarm on My holy mountain! Let all who live in the land tremble, for the Day of YHWH is coming! Surely it is near - a day of darkness and gloom, a day of clouds and gross darkness.  As the dawn is spread over the mountain so there is a great and mighty people coming. There has never been anything like it, nor will there ever be in the ages to come ... before them the earth quakes, the heavens tremble, the sun and the moon grow dark, and the stars no longer shine.”  (Joel 2:1-2, 10)

“I will display wonders in the sky and on the earth, blood, fire and billows of smoke. The sun will be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and awesome Day of YHWH comes.”  (Joel 2:30-31)

Y’shua the Messiah reiterated what Isaiah and Joel said, when He also foretold the upheaval to come:

“And there will be signs in the sun and moon and stars, and upon earth despair among nations, with perplexity at the roaring and tossing of the sea. Men’s hearts will faint from terror, being apprehensive of what is coming upon the world; for the very powers of the heavens will be shaken.” 

Immediately after the Tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened and the moon will not give its light, the stars will fall from the sky, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken. Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in the sky and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of the sky with power and great glory. (Luke 21:25-26. Matthew 24:29-30)

How it is possible for the sun to be darkened?  A scientist told me it is through a phenomenon called “the popping of the core,” which is actually an explosion of the core of the sun.

SCIENTISTS ALARMED

Scientists today are alarmed, not only because the sun is wobbling, but because of other developments in the sun, which they believe are a prelude to the sun’s explosion.

For the past fifty years, scientists have observed that the sun has been contracting by thirteen kilometres every year. It burns itself away at an estimated 240 million tomes every minute.

They have also observed an increased heat and brightness in the sun. And in the last ten years there has been a 20% increase of ultra-violet rays from the sun which is affecting our atmosphere, and causing chaotic weather patterns. Is it surprising that we also see strange epidemics, viruses and diseases, including skin cancer, today?

Signs are already happening in the universe.

Out there in space, many stars (suns) are exploding. The hydrogen of a star gradually burns up and becomes helium. When the core of the star becomes 40% helium, the star explodes. Our sun’s core is already 50% helium, and the question scientists cannot answer is; why has our sun not already exploded?

The only answer is that it is not yet God’s perfect time. But it does mean that our sun could pop at any time!

Immediately prior to the explosion, the sun will turn savage, intensifying its heat.  This also has been prophesied:

“The fourth angel poured out his bowl upon the sun; and the sun was given power to scorch men with fire. And men were scorched with fierce heat; and they blasphemed the Name of God (Yahweh) who had control over these plagues; but they did not repent and give Him glory.”     (Revelation 16:8-9)

An explosion of the core of the sun will not mean the end of life on our planet, but for a period of days or weeks, almost total darkness would prevail; normal light would not be emitted, but ultra-red rays would keep the world from freezing. These red rays would also cause the moon to appear as dark crimson.

Can you imagine a black sun rising? Well, the sky would be so black, you would hardly see the sun at all. Probably the sun would be outlined by a red ring caused by ultra-red rays. Can you imagine the eerie darkness?

This explosion will be part of the shaking of the heavens towards the end of the Great Tribulation. The darkness will go on for some time until “the sign of the Son of Man” appears in the sky.

The Messiah Himself will then descend from heaven in great glory, as you have just read above, in Matthew 24:30.

And we are also told that the Heavenly City will come down out of heaven. We expect the City to be stationed above the earth, for we are told the nations will walk by its light:

“And I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God ... The nations made up of those who are saved, will walk by its light ...”  (Revelation 21:2, 24)

So the Heavenly City will give light to the earth, but in the meantime, the helium in the sun will be redistributed until the sun comes back to life, as Messiah returns with healing.

“But for you who revere My Name, the Sun of Righteousness will rise with healing in His wings; and you will go forth and skip about like calves from the stall.”  (Malachi 4:2)   

                      

15

AN UNPRECEDENTED

PERIOD OF JUDGMENT

The Scripture leaves us in no doubt that the coming judgment is an unprecedented period of sorrow, tragedy and remorse. According to the word of Y'shua the Messiah, the coming Tribulation will be far more terrible than the Flood. He said:

"There will be great tribulation, such as has never occurred since the beginning of the world until now; and there will be nothing like it again." (Matthew 24:21)

Noah's flood was over in a year, but the Tribulation to come will span seven years. It will not be a single judgment like the flood, but will include earthquakes, pestilences, cyclones, famines, pollution, poisoning of water supplies, wars, nuclear weapons, upheavals in the universe and atmosphere, plagues, scorching heat, malignant sores, and a ruthless Satanic dictatorship.

THE END WILL COME LIKE A FLOOD

(Daniel 9:26)

And Y'shua the Messiah said the endtimes will come in like Noah's flood:

"For the Jays of the coming of the Son of Man will be just like the days of Noah. For as in the days before the flood, people were eating and drinking, they were marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark. And they did not understand until the flood came and took them all away. It will be like that at the coming of the Son of Man. There will be two men in the field: one will be taken, and the other left. Two women will be grinding at the mill; one will be taken, and the other left. Therefore be on the alert, for you do not know which day your Master is coming." (Matthew 24:37-42)

WHEN WILL THE "FLOOD" HIT?

The Great Tribulation, my reader, is not something in the distant future, it could start any day! As we view current conditions around the world, we can only ask. "How long can God hold back His wrath?"

Although we cannot predict the day nor the year, we would not be wrong in saying time is running out for this present generation.

Y'shua the Messiah indicated that when we see certain things occur, we will know that His coming is "right at the door."

As well as the increase of earthquakes, cyclones, floods, fam­ines, plagues, diseases, and rock-bottom social and religious conditions, other major signs of His coming and the approach­ing Tribulation, would be ...

*         the restoration of the nation of Israel

*         the rise of a Russian-led confederation of nations

*         the emergence of a framework for World Government

*         the resurgence of occultism and widespread practice of Satanism

*         the surge towards a one-world religion

*         the revival of the ancient Roman Empire in Europe

*         the rise of powerful nations in the East, such as Japan and China, and their growing co-operation.

*         the strategic emphasis on the Middle East

*         Jerusalem as a burdensome stone for all nations.

Most key pieces of the endtime world jigsaw puzzle are now falling into place. The stage scenery for the world's greatest drama is rapidly being set. Soon the curtain will rise, and the Revelation will be enacted in all its horrific reality. Soon the depopulation of the earth will begin. Soon the purging of Planet Earth will be under way. Soon the prophecies will be history, and those who are not prepared will hear the cry, "Too late!"

The good news is that at this moment, we are not yet too late. We are in the age of grace. The door of salvation is still open. The door of the kingdom of God is still open, and God is still striving with all men everywhere. And He is still commanding all men everywhere to repent. My reader, can you not feel God striving in your heart? Through the pressures and problems. He is seeking to turn you to His grace. Through exhortations and entreaties He is calling you to receive His mercy.

       

           16                 IS  IT  ?

It may seem that some of the prophecies I’ve been quoting, concern the ultimate destruction of the world. But no!

The Great Tribulation is a purging, a cleansing of the world in preparation for the Messiah's Reign of Righteousness. The destruction of the physical universe will not occur until after the 1,000 years of Messiah's worldwide reign.

I once used to think, "Wouldn't it be nice if the Lord Jesus came and took over the governments and financial institutions of the nations and straightened things out." Nice and simple!

But there's no way the Holy One is going to rule over a rebellious planet, where the standards and ways of the Heavenly Father are rejected, and where His Name, and everything He stands for, is blasphemed. He must first cleanse this planet of the evils that are ruining both its environment and its people.

At present God is allowing the nations to experience the bitter disappointment that is produced by human passion, brutality, covetousness, and self-centredness, and by a human logic that is devoid of the wisdom and guidance that He is willing to supply.

The Messiah is not interested in merely reducing crime, corruption and pollution. He's going to eliminate such evils, and build a glorious new world of peace and justice? He is going to replace man's manipulation, his exploitation, his degrad­ing entertainment, and his soul-destroying lifestyle, with a brand new life - a life of joyful fulfilment and a wholesome fullness, through the believer's participation in the Rivers of spiritual life.

The Messiah must first judge and bring an end to men's corrupt systems. As the ancient Enoch prophesied:

"Enoch, in the seventh generation from Adam, prophesied of these: 'Look, YHWH is coming with thousands upon thousands of His holy ones, to execute judgment upon all, and to convict all the ungodly of all their ungodly deeds which they have done in an ungodly way, and of all the
harsh things which ungodly sinners have spoken against Him.” 
(Jude 14--15)

WHY DO CHILDREN GET KILLED?

People often ask me, "What about the little ones in the world? Why should they suffer in the Tribulation?"

It is a tragic fact that babies and little children do suffer, both in all natural disasters, and in man-made atrocities.

In the Great Flood, every baby on earth was destroyed.

When Jerusalem was destroyed by the Romans in AD 70, it was not only the adults who were slaughtered: babies were taken from their mothers’ arms and thrown from high buildings to the streets below. They were dashed to pieces.

At Hiroshima, the atom bomb did not fall on adults only, but on the little ones too.

TIME magazine (Jan. 11, '82) devoted 23 pages to its cover story, entitled, "Children of War." It dealt with the tragedies affecting children in Ireland, Israel, Lebanon, Cambodia and Vietnam. It quoted a poem by a girl in Israel, which expresses the feelings of many:

If there is a God, and yes, many claim there is.

Then how does it happen that little kids get killed?

It's the same question; why does God allow disasters to affect little children?

The tragic fact is that children suffer because of the sins of their parents, and of their nations. It is because of the wick­edness of society in general. Long ago God said:

"YHWH is longsuffering, abounding in steadfast love and mercy and forgiving sin and transgression. Yet He will by no means leave the guilty unpunished; He punishes the children for the sins of the fathers to the third and fourth generation."   (Numbers 14:18)

Yes, it seems very wrong that children should suffer because of their parents' sins. But this is the natural, and tragic, repercussion that follows a man's evil living.

You cannot commit sin without it having some impact upon others. While it helps to destroy you personally, the evil in you helps to destroy others in your circuit.

If a father is a drunkard, do you think his children will not be affected? Or if a young person is a drug addict, do you think that he is not going to adversely affect his family and friends? If a man drives recklessly and kills the family in his car, can we ask, "Why did the baby get killed?" ?

Is a person's wild behaviour simply his own choice of a lifestyle that affects no-one but himself? No! Nearly every­thing a person does, whether good or evil, affects others.

Isaiah warned the nations of the consequences that would come upon their families because of their reprobate living:

"Thus I will punish the world for its evil, and the wicked for their iniquity. ... Their little ones will also be dashed to pieces before their eyes; their houses will be plundered and their wives ravished."                                         (Isaiah 13:1 I, 16)

It is not God's will that little ones suffer. And neither is it His will that parents should live in a way that brings tragic results upon their children.

Parent, if you want to save your children and grandchildren from much suffering, then repent of any evil in your life. And don't teach your children your devious ways, otherwise they will soon be walking in the same ways as you.

OUR SINS AFFECTS OTHERS!

Oh man! When we sin, we sin not only against our own selves; we sin against our neighbours, our families and our nations; and, of course, we sin against the Holy One, for all sin is an offence against God. And the wages of sin is death. (Romans 6:23)

Let us not wink at sin, or turn a blind eye to it, or brush it off with the comment; "Oh, everyone's doing it." And don't expect the Holy God to wink at sin!

17

THERE IS A NEW WORLD COMING 

The popping of the core of the sun and the shaking of the earth is im­minent, but the sun and the earth are not going to be completely destroyed - not yet. Several passages we have read indicate that beyond the Tribulation, there is a renewed world over which Yahweh the Almighty God reigns through Y'shua, His Anointed Messiah.

Isaiah and Haggai describe the violent shaking of the earth, followed by the reign of Messiah.

"YHWH will punish the host of heaven on high, and the kings of the earth . ... Then the moon will blush and the sun will be ashamed, for YHWH of Hosts will reign on Mount Zion and in Jerusalem."  (Isaiah 24:21. 23)

"For thus says YHWH of Hosts, 'In a little while I will once more shake the heavens and the earth, the sea and the dry land. And I will shake all the nations; and the Desire (the Saviour} of all nations will come; and I will fill this house (the temple) with glory'."  (Haggai 2:6-7)

It is likely that during the shaking-upheaval, the earth will be set back onto its original, or a more suitable, axis, which will cause the world to become a Garden of Eden once more.

The new world of righteousness will be populated by a remnant of saved people who have embraced the Messiah, and His righteousness and authority?

The Messiah is to reign from Jerusalem, and His glory will fill the House of God, and the whole world.

"And truly as I live." YHWH said, "all the earth will be filled with the glory of YHWH."  (Numbers 14:21)

Yes, there is a new world coming, and blessed are all who share in Messiah's kingdom, either on earth, or in the Heavenly City.

 

 

18

WHERE IS THE ARK TODAY?

If you are looking for the ancient flat-bottomed wooden ship of Noah, you can find the remnants of it on Mount Ararat in Turkey. It is encased in icy crevasses on that mountain. It has been spotted by planes flying overhead, and exploratory teams on ground have claimed sighting it. The ark is a historical fact. But what we need today is not the historical Noah’s ark, but a spiritual ark - a provision to literally and physically save us from the coming Tribulation.

Let me emphasise that the Tribulation is not merely trouble; it’s the wrath of God.  If it were merely persecution of believers, we would not expect to escape from it - for persecution is a participation in the sufferings of Christ, and Messiah’s Body (His church) in general, shares in that suffering. But the Tribulation is judgment of unbelievers, and every true member of Messiah’s Body (the Church) will be saved completely from it.

But for the world there is no exemption.  This is “the hour that is about to come upon the whole world, to try those who dwell on the earth.” (Revelation 3:10).   This is the time to ...

“FLEE FROM THE WRATH TO COME”

God does not want anyone to perish!  But howWhere to flee? How to be saved?  What provision is there for us?  Where is there an ark of safety today?

The ark of safety for us today is the Lord Jesus Christ Himself. He is God’s provision. He is the One who can, and will, save us from the coming wrath, if we call upon Him, and trust in Him.

The Lord Jesus gave a promise to all His people:

“Because you have kept the word of My endurance, I also will keep you out of the hour of trial which is about to come upon the whole world, to try those who live on the earth.”    (Revelation 3:10)

This verse is not saying our being kept from the Tribulation is based on our endurance. No!  Y’shua is the One who persevered - He endured unto death.

“Messiah, Y’shua, who, although existing in the form of God - being in very nature God, did not regard equality with God something to be grasped, but emptied Himself (of all rightful dignity), taking the form of a bond-servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself (still further) by becoming obedient to the extreme of death, even death of an execution stake - a cross.”  (Philippians 2:5-8)

To keep “the word of His endurance,” is to obey His Word, the Gospel of Christ’s sacrifice at Calvary, by believing and receiving Him as Saviour and Lord.

The “hour of testing” or “trial” is the seven-year Tribulation. And how will the Lord keep His people from that trial? It is implied in the next verse: “I am coming quickly.”

The Lord Jesus is coming before the Tribulation, to deliver His people by catching them up to Himself in the spiritual place He has prepared for them. The Lord promised clearly:

“In My Father’s House are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you to Myself; so that you also may be where I am.”           (John 14:2-3)

How will He actually do this? Like He took Enoch and Elijah to heaven - by physically transporting them to the Father’s House. Paul’s prophecy explains how it will occur:

“For the Master Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet call of God. Then the dead in Christ - those who died in union with the Messiah - shall rise first. Then we, the living believers who remain, will simultaneously be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Master in the air. And so we will be with the Master for ever.”  (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17)

“Impossible!” says the sceptic, “How can a physical body be caught up into the air?”

Paul gives the answer to that question also;

“Listen! I tell you a mystery, a secret truth; we will not all fall asleep, (that is - die); but we will all be changed, transformed - in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet; for the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised incorruptible and imperishable, and we, also, will be changed - transformed. For this corruptible, the perishable part of us, must put on incorruption, and this mortal part of us -  that is capable of dying, must put on immortality.”  (1 Corinthians 15:51-53)

Believers will have bodies like Y’shua had when He rose from the dead - bodies unlimited by time and space; bodies unlimited by the physical realm; bodies capable of inhabiting both earthly and heavenly spheres.

The catching up of believers to Heaven will be similar to the ascension of Y’shua Himself, of which we read:

“Now when He had spoken these things, while they watched, He was caught up, and a cloud received Him out of their sight.”  (Acts 1:9)

The “catching up,” to meet the Saviour in the clouds is commonly called the “Rapture.”  It will truly be a rapturous event.  It will be the means of deliverance for all who belong to Jesus; and it will take place before the Tribulation begins.

A type or picture of the Rapture is seen in the story of Lot and the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah. Lot, his wife and two daughters were taken out of the city and up to the mountains before the fire fell on the wicked cities. The Lord Jesus draws the parallel in Luke 17:28-30.

“It was the same in the days of Lot: they were eating, they were drinking, they were buying and selling, planting and building; but on the day Lot went out of Sodom, fire and sulphur rained down from heaven and destroyed them all. It will be just like this on the day the Son of Man is revealed.”

When the Master comes to the clouds, He will first catch His people away to Heaven; then the judgment will begin on earth.

What a fate is in store for those left behind; suffering and for most, death in a Tribulation such as has never occurred in human history.

The coming of the Master brings blessing and preservation to those who have been wise enough to enter “the Ark,” but it brings wrath and damnation to those who are outside.

Y’shua said:  “I tell you, on that night there will be two in one bed; one will be taken, and the other will be left. Two women will be grinding at the same place; one will be taken, and the other will be left.’ Two men will be in the field; one will be taken and the other will be left.”  (Luke 17:34-36)

A prophecy of Paul also emphasises the contrasting result:

“This is a plain indication of God’s righteous judgment so that you may be considered worthy of the kingdom of God, for which indeed you are suffering. For it is indeed just of God to repay with affliction whose who afflict you, and to give relief to you who are afflicted along with us when the Master, Y’shua, is revealed from heaven with His mighty angels in blazing fire, inflicting vengeance on those who do not know God and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Master, Y’shua.

“And these will pay the penalty of eternal destruction away from the Presence of the Master and from the glory of His power, when He comes to be glorified in His set-apart people on that Day, and to be marvelled at among all who have believed - for our testimony among you was believed.” (2 Thessalonians 1:5-10)

At this present time, the followers of Jesus are being afflicted in many parts of the world. In fact there is more persecution of Christians today than at any time in history.  Currently, 160,000 people are killed every year because they are Christians.

Yes, believers are called upon to share the reproach and the sufferings of Christ. Millions are despised and afflicted; many are imprisoned and murdered.  But soon the believers’ afflictions will be over; they will be delivered by the Master at the Rapture. And then the affliction for the persecutors will begin. Messiah, the Judge of all, will deal out retribution upon the world, not for an hour, not for a day, but for seven long, cruel years.

How blessed are those who are taken to be with the Heavenly Master! What a privilege; to be caught up without dying; transported to the mansions of glory, where they will share the life and eternity of Almighty God.

19                                                      ?

WHAT TYPE OF GOD IS

YAHWEH, THE ETERNAL ONE

 

Many scoff at the possibility that God should judge the world. But I want to ask you, what kind of God is Yahweh Elohim - the God of the Bible? Is He some senile grandfather sitting up in the clouds? Is He some kind of doting deity of whom we may beg and demand and receive lots of goodies?

Or is He like a servant; a God who does everything to please us whenever we call out ‘Oh God!’? Is He there for our benefit; to solve the problems we create?  Or is He a figment of our imagination, to be ignored and discarded as we see fit?

No! No! Yahweh Elohim is the Holy One; the Eternal One; the Righteous Ruler of this whole Universe.

God created us for Himself. All mankind was created for the glory of God, but long, long ago, we went astray and turned to our own ways; and this is what man is still doing today - turning to his own way. Look at our sick society today - our sin-sick society! What is the attitude of modern man towards the Messiah - the Anointed One?

“We will not have this Man Y’shua, Jesus, to rule over us! ... Who is God? Who is He that He should tell US what to do? We are advanced, educated, scientific, and technological. We don’t need God to tell us what to do! We are quite capable of deciding our own standards, of guiding our own lives, and of deciding our own future.”

The attitude of many self-assured today seems to say:

“Away with God, away with the Bible; we don’t need them, and we don’t want them, and we won’t have them!”

And what is God supposed to do?  Tell me!  Should He wink at the iniquity that is throttling our society, and say:

“Oh these dear, naughty children! Boys will be boys, and girls will be girls!”?   

Or shall He chuckle at our antics, and say: “Oh they’re so cute! It doesn’t really matter if they can’t see what they are doing to themselves.” ?

My reader, let us recognise that God is the Holy One, and He’s not only the God of Israel. He’s the God of all the earth.  And let us humble ourselves and confess that we, mankind, have grievously offended His holiness. We have turned against our Creator, by our rebellion, our unbelief, our disobedience, and by our utter indifference to His voice.

My reader, you’ve heard of Moses. You have heard of the commandments Yahweh gave to Israel. No doubt you remember the first two commands:

1. “I am YHWH your God who brought you out of Egypt, out of the house of slavery. You shall have no other gods before or besides Me.

2. ‘You shall not make for yourself any graven image - any idol in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath, or in the waters below. You shall not bow down to them nor worship and serve them; for I, YHWH your God, am a jealous God ...” (Exodus 20:2-5)

But what does most of the world care about the commands of the God of Israel?  They might be applicable to Israel, but not for us!  And so we cram our lives with gods of gadgets and gimmicks - as many as we feel we can safely accommodate - gods of ambition, goals, money, possessions, business, home, family, people, sport, entertainment, sex, pleasure - and of course, SELF, our principle object of devotion.

Today the world is in the grip of a demonic plan to bring the whole world in obeisance, to the feet of Satan. What we see in society today is not happening by chance.

Satan is at work to destroy faith in Yahweh the Almighty.

The increasing crime and violence is not happening by accident; the drug addiction afflicting our young people is not by accident; it is a satanically-inspired business promoted by criminal networks around the world.  The increase of alcoholism and the collapse of morality are not by accident. The pernicious pornography plague that is sweeping the world is not by accident; it is big business, and pushed by the devil and his minions.

Now, on video, the most depraved entertainment since the Roman Empire is available at a small price. XXXX-rated films have gone as far as it’s possible to go; with sadistic and snuff movies at the end of the line.

This is the 21st century world, my friend, and we can’t blame God if we drown in our self-hewn pits of slime. “We the People” have created our society, and have fashioned it according to our own tastes.

A majority seem to love the depravity.

A minority are vexed by the moral corruption. 

Others accept it, or shrug it off with a “what to do?” 

Those who love the Word of God, and who seek to practise the ways of Godliness, are a small remnant - they seem to be the “odd ones out” these days.

Listen! Y’shua is indeed a God of Judgment, but He is also a loving, compassionate Saviour.

“For when we were still weak, the Messiah at the right time died for the ungodly.  Now very rarely will someone die even for a righteous man, though possibly for a good man someone might even have the courage to die.  But God demonstrates His own love for us, in that while we were still sinners, the Messiah died for us.”  (Romans 5:6-8)

 

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GOD IS NOT WILLING

THAT ANY SHOULD PERISH

This is a fearful subject, my friend, but before I finish, let me emphasise once again these facts: 

     *    The judgment is appointed.

     *    The day is fixed.

     *    It is fast approaching.

     *    It will surely come, even as the great flood came.

Today the wicked seem to be prospering; but it will not be so for much longer.  The fruit of the nations is almost ripe; the horrific climax of the age is near.

The grace of God is holding back the time of judgment only until the appointed day. In the meantime, the Holy Spirit is striving with souls, to deliver them from the wrath to come.

At present it is a hard road in many places for the followers of Christ today.  BUT The Rapture draws nearer every day. For the believer, total deliverance from affliction is imminent. For the world affliction will come suddenly like an avalanche.

My reader, can you not see that the mercy of God is striving with men today? Can you not see that He is not willing that a single soul should perish? He has no delight in the damnation of souls, but longs that everyone will respond to His provision, and be saved.

“Turn ye, turn ye, for why will you die?” He cries.

We were created by the Eternal One, and we were created for Him. He loves us!  Why should we be a loss to Him? Dear reader, He loves us! You and me! And the whole world!

He loves that despised beggar squatting in the dust. He loves those lonely street kids living in awful squalor and poverty. He loves even those renegades who press their noses through iron bars. The “down and outs” are also objects of His love.

The common and crude, the degraded and despised, the fornicator and the fool, the ungrateful and the greedy, the heavy-hearted and the heartless, the jealous and joyless, the kidnapper and hijacker, the murderer and plunderer, the prostitute and professor, the treacherous and terrible - all may find that they are objects of grace if they just call upon the Name, and the great love of God.

My reader, God loves. God loves the rich, the poor, the ruler, the peasant, the righteous, the perverted, the respectable, the proud, the reputed, the deprived, the regal, and the fallen. God loves them all! And He is not willing that any should perish.

Be sure, none of us deserve His attention, nor His blessing, His care, His delight, His embrace, His favour, His grace, His help, or His invitation, but He loves us each one, regardless of our standing and stature, regardless of our achievements and attainments, regardless of our failures and frustration, regardless of our religion and race, regardless of our position and place, regardless of what we have made of our lives, and regardless of the environment in which we live.

He loves us with an everlasting love, a love that is patient and enduring, that’s tender and compassionate; a love that groans and suffers, that pleads and perseveres.

But there may be one of my readers who really doubts the love of God. Someone says:

“How has God helped me? In which way has God proved His love in my life?  No! Look at my sorrows and sufferings; look at my problems and poverty; look at  my  trials  and  temptations!  Where is  the  love  of God in my life?”

It’s there, my friend. The love of God is in your every circumstance and situation, and you would recognise it if you simply called upon His Name, and looked to His Anointed One - Y’shua, Jesus the Messiah. If only you would respond to His call, you would feel His arms around you; you would find His eyes guiding you, His ears listening to your prayer, and His power at work in your life.

To prove God’s love for you, my friend, I urge you to take one long look at the Cross of Calvary, where the Saviour paid the penalty of your sins, and died for your redemption. Look and see just how much He loves you!          

“For YHWH, the Almighty God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten (His one and only, unique) Son, so that whoever believes in Him, should not perish, but have eternal (everlasting) life.”  (John 3:16)

“For when we were still weak, the Messiah at the right time died for the ungodly. Now very rarely will someone die even for a righteous man, though possibly for a good man someone might even have the courage to die. But God demonstrates His own love for us, in that while we were still sinners, the Messiah died for us. Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from the wrath of God through Him. For if while we were enemies, we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life.”     (Romans 5:6-10)

He laid down His life for us.  (1 John 3:16)

Jesus was wounded for our transgressions He was bruised for our iniquities. He was scourged for our healing. He was nailed to the cross for our salvation. He shed His blood for our forgiveness, for the remission of our sins. He died to pay the penalty of our evil. What more? Yes, He rose from the dead for our justification, He ascended to heaven to intercede for us with the Father. He lives to keep us, to lead us, and to satisfy us. He sent His Spirit to live in us, to comfort us, to empower us, and to make our lives a blessing.

So much, and much more He has done for us. But His work for us, and His love towards us, becomes effective in our lives only as we believe and trust in Him. If we are willing, He is more than willing to save us. If we don’t want Him, He will not force His way into our lives. If we would rather continue on our own way, to enjoy the pleasures of sin and selfishness, and to reap the results of our sin, He will not force us to walk the straight and narrow way. God wants people who want Him - people who want to share His life, who want to share His plans, His goal, His character, His home and His eternity.

The day will soon come, however, when God must say, “Time’s Up!” The countdown is getting lower every day. Soon the trumpet will shout, and Master will shout from heaven, ‘’Come up.” Then all those who belong to Him will rise, in their instantly-changed bodies, to meet the Saviour in the air, and to disappear with Him into the spiritual realm.

And on earth, the judgment will begin. I repeat, it has been appointed - scheduled! The very day is fixed. God will not strive forever. He must fulfil all righteousness, as righteous, spiritual and omnipotent Ruler of this Universe. And what He has said, will be done!

“Then I will draw near to you for judgment; and I will be a swift witness against the sorcerers and against the adulterers and against those who swear falsely, and against those who oppress the wage earner in his wages, the widow and the orphan, and those who turn aside the alien, and do not fear Me, says YHWH of Hosts.” (Malachi 3:5)

“Surely the day is coming, burning like a furnace; and all the arrogant and every evildoer will be chaff; and the day that is coming will set them ablaze, says YHWH of  Hosts, so that it will leave them neither root nor branch.”  (Malachi 4:1)

TODAY IS THE DAY OF SALVATION

What a relief it is to know that we are at present in the day of grace, and not in the day of judgment. What a relief to know that we can make our peace with God; we can be included in His people; we can enter the ark of His provision, and be saved. Today the door is still open!

My friend, let me ask you, quite frankly; “Have you come into the ark? Have you come into the Lord Jesus Christ? Have you made your peace with God?”

If you are not sure you are “in Christ,” if you are not sure your sins have been forgiven, if you are not sure the Saviour will preserve you from the wrath to come, then please go carefully over the following seven simple but essential steps, which show you how to enter the Ark.

21

HOW TO ENTER THE “ARK”  

TO BE SAVED

 

STEP ONE     

ACKNOWLEDGE YOUR NEED OF THE SAVIOUR

We must start with our condition before God.  We must own up to the fact that we are sinners in God’s sight.

The Word of God says, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”   “There is none righteous, not even one.” (Romans 3:23. 3:10)

“For all of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous deeds are like filthy rags. All of us shrivel up like a leaf, and our iniquities, like the wind, sweep us away.” (Isaiah 64:6)

Our first prayer should be, “God, be merciful to me, a sinner.”

The Lord will definitely pardon and blot out our sins from His record, if we receive His provision for our pardon - the sacrifice of the Messiah on the cross.

“Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts. Let him return to YHWH, and He will have compassion on him; and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon.” (Isaiah 55:7)

STEP TWO 

BELIEVE IN Y’SHUA AS YOUR PERSONAL SAVIOUR

We are called to believe in the Son of God, the Lord Jesus Christ, for He is the way to God.

“Y'shua answered him, ‘I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life; no-one comes to the Father, except through Me.”  (John 14:6)

“For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men - the Man, Messiah Y'shua.” (1 Timothy 2:5)

The Word of God gives us many wonderful promises:

“He who believes in the Son has eternal life; but he who does not believe (trust in and obey) the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God remains on him.”  (John 3:36)

Y’shua Himself said:

“I tell you the truth, he who hears My word, and believes Him who sent Me, has eternal life, and will not come into judgment, but has passed out of death into life.” (John 5:24)

“I am the door; whoever enters through Me will be saved. He will go in and go out, and find pasture. ...  I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; and no-one will snatch them out of My hand.” (John 10:9, 28)

“I am the Resurrection, and the Life; he who believes in Me , even though he dies, he will live; and whoever is living and believing in Me will never die.”  (John 11:25 & 26)

To “believe in Jesus” can be amplified by five simple terms:

1   Confess Jesus as Lord

2   Believe in your heart

 “If  you  confess  with  your  mouth  Y'shua  as  LORD,  the Heavenly Master, and  believe  in  your  heart  that God raised Him from dead, you will be saved.” (Romans l0:9)

3   Call on His name

“For whoever will call upon the Name of the LORD will be saved.”     (Romans 10:13)

4   Trust in the Lord                                                                                          

Trust in YHWH with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding.”        (Proverbs 3:5)

It is a simple thing to ask or to call on the Saviour. And yet some people are too proud to ask; and some are too shy, to do so. We need to come humbly, without fear, simply trusting His promises.

Recently I gave my car to a mechanic for repairs.  We got to talking about salvation.  To make it clear to him, I said, “It’s a matter of simply trusting the Saviour.  Look, I gave you my car to repair. You promised to look after the car, to find the problem, and fix it, to keep it locked up at night, and to charge me a reasonable price.  I’m trusting you to do that. And I believe you will.  Likewise, you need to simple trust in the Lord Jesus to do what He has promised to so - to save you from your sin, to make you a child of God, and to give you eternal life - all freely, by His grace.

This is a definite step of faith you must make. It is as simple as a drowning man calling out, “Help, save me!”

5   Faith

“For by grace you have been saved, through faith - and this is not of yourselves, it is the gift of God - not as a result of works, lest anyone should boast.”   (Ephesians 2:8-9)

Two simple equations which may help you to understand more clearly: 

BELIEVE  (CALL  +  TRUST  -  CONFESS)   =  FAITH

GOD’S  GRACE  -->  MAN’S  FAITH  =  SALVATION

My dear reader, the Almighty God is waiting and longing to hear and answer your prayer - to save you this day. 

My friend, when you were a child, you trusted your parents to give you daily food. Now just trust the Heavenly Father to give you His salvation.

And here is another promise for you to cling to:

“Commit your way to YHWH! Trust also in Him, and He will do it.”     (Psalms 37:5)

STEP THREE

SETTLE THE MATTER BY PRAYING TO YOUR GOD AND SAVIOUR 

The third step, my reader, will bring your through the door into Christ, into the family and Kingdom of God. If you have not yet come, take these three simple steps, and settle the matter of your salvation today.  They involve a great decision - the greatest decision you could ever make - to enter the Ark of God’s provision. Don’t remain outside the ark to perish along with  the Christ-rejecting crowds, but step into Y'shua, Jesus.  The Saviour will come into your life and give you eternal life.  He will change your life and destiny; and make you a new person. He will also seal you with His Holy Spirit, and keep you from the wrath to come.

Come to the Heavenly Father just as you are, in a simple prayer.

The Decision Prayer below may help you to express faith in Christ. Pray sincerely, trusting God to save you right now.

 

DECISION PRAYER

Oh God, be merciful to me, a sinner.  I come to You, Heavenly Father, just as I am, confessing my need of your grace and salvation.

I believe in Y’shua, Jesus the Messiah, Your eternal Son, whom You sent to earth to be the sacrifice for my sins and for the sins of the world.  I believe He died for me on the cross, and that He rose again on the third day, and is exalted at Your Right Hand.  Father I believe You will forgive my sins this very moment, and make me Your true child, and a new person “in Christ.”

Y’shua, my Master, my Saviour, I yield my life to You, and I trust You to fulfil Your promises in me this very moment; that You will save me and dwell in me; that You will make me a temple of Your Holy Spirit; that You will give me the gift of eternal life, and will save me from the Great Tribulation.

Master, make me Your true follower. Deliver me from all my sinful and selfish ways, and reign in every part of my life. By Your grace, I will own You as my Saviour from this day on.

Thank You, Master for bringing me to this decision.. Thank You, Father for hearing and answering my prayer. Thank You for saving me, and writing my name in Your Book of Life in Heaven.  Thank You, Father.  I pray in the Name of Y’shua the Messiah. Thank You. Amen.

NOW JUST THANK THE MASTER

AND FOLLOW HIM

A few final instructions to help you:

1     Keep on thanking the Master for His answer, for His salvation, His forgiveness, and eternal life.  Eternal life is the wonderful gift of God. It is not some small favour He is doing, but a tremendous miracle in your heart. Thank Him, not once, but a hundred times.

“In everything give thanks; for this is God’s will for you in Messiah Y'shua.” (1 Thessalonians 5:18)

2     Try to tell someone, today of your decision to follow the Y'shua, Jesus the Heavenly Master.

3     Study  God’s  Word,  the  Bible  ardently,  and  talk  to  the Master regularly.

4     Count upon Y’shua and His power to keep you in all difficulties that come along your way.

5     If you have prayed the decision prayer and received the Lord Jesus as your personal Saviour today, will you write to let me know so that we might pray for you and send you some literature to help guide and strengthen you in your faith.

Write to me, Don Stanton, at …

Maranatha Revival Crusade,

Western Australia.

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