Our Lord’s coronation day begins with the King’s return at the end of the Tribulation – the seventieth week of Daniel (Dan. 9:27; Rev. 19:11-16). The King will return to rescue and restore the nation of Israel in order to fulfill God’s covenant promise to Abraham (Zech. 13:8–14:19; Rom. 11:25–36; Rev. 19:11–20:3; Isa. 61:2b–64:12). God will purge and purify the Jews from their rebellion against Him and prepare them to face their King (Zech. 12:9; Mal. 2:3–4). He will make the nation of Israel, now dead, to live again (Rom. 11:25–26; Ezek. 37:4–12). The King will also return to reclaim and renew the earth from the clutches of Satan (Isa. 11:3–9; Rom. 8:19–22; Luke 4:6–7; 2 Cor. 4:4; Jn. 16:11, 12:31; Rev. 5:6–10). And the King will return to reign over a kingdom on a renewed earth for a thousand years (Rev. 20:4–6).
The church is referred to as the mystery by Paul – the dispensation of grace, or the mystery of Christ (Eph. 3:1-4). This mystery is a gap of time between Messiah being cut off (crucified) and the catching up of the church (Dan. 9:26). This gap has lasted for now over 2,000 years. The seven literal churches in the book of Revelation actually represent seven church ages: Ephesus (30-100 A.D.), Smyrna (100-313), Pergamum (313 – 600), Thyatira (600-1517), Sardis (1517-1648), Philadelphia (1648-1900), and Laodicea (1900 to the present).
After the church age, a series of judgments on God’s people (the Jews) will be unleashed. These judgments are broken down in Revelation 5-19 into seven seals, seven trumpets, and seven bowls, each being worse than the one before. They come like waves on a beach. The first wave of judgment (the seal judgments) begins with the opening of the seven-sealed scroll. John was crying because there was no one to open the scroll. He then heard the roar of a lion that startled him, and he turned and saw a Lamb as though it had been slain (Rev. 5:6). The Lamb was worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals. The scroll is the title deed to the earth. With the opening of the scroll, the waves of judgment begin on the earth to reclaim and renew the earth for the kingdom to begin.
When the last seal is broken, the first of seven trumpet judgments begin. They are worse than the seal judgments. When the last trumpet is blown, it will usher in a time called the seven bowls – a time of horror like never seen before in history. The last bowl judgment ends with the great campaign of Armageddon (Rev. 16). This judgment begins with three insidious demons being belched out of where: the dragon (Satan), the Antichrist (the Beast), and the false prophet (another beast). These demons are commissioned by Satan to gather the whole world together at the Valley of Megiddo for the battle of the great day of God Almighty (Rev. 16:12–16). Their mission is to destroy the woman (Israel) who gave birth to the Son (the Lord Jesus), but we already know from Genesis 3:15 that the Son is destined to kill the dragon, Satan.
Contrary to popular belief, there will be no fighting in the Jezreel Valley. There is really no such battle as the Battle of Armageddon. In the Jezreel Valley, storm clouds gather in the form of the armies of the Antichrist, preparing to destroy Jerusalem (Rev. 16:12-16). The battle is called “The Great Day of God Almighty.” God will dry up the mighty Euphrates River to allow the Antichrist and his army to get to the Jezreel Valley. There is little doubt that one of these armies will include much of the revived Roman Empire which surprisingly is made up of a large percentage of the Muslim Arabic bloc that circles the Mediterranean Sea and surrounds the tiny nation of Israel today. What a coincidence! This army will be headed by the Antichrist himself. I made the observation in my book “A Glimpses of the Coming King,” that wouldn’t it be the one of the greatest “gotcha’s” of history for Islam’s coming Mahdi (Twelfth Imam), and the Beast mentioned in the Bible, to be one and the same. I really think – because of the identity of the Mahdi given in the Muslim writings – the Koran and the Sunna (the Hadith), and the characteristics identifying the Antichrist, that they are. Both Russia and China will be involved. These armies will realize the genius of the Antichrist, and they will pledge their allegiance to him. It is from this Jezreel Valley that these soldiers under the leadership of the Antichrist will gather, organize, and ready themselves for battle – to go first against Jerusalem. One serious motivation for this looming battle could be the vast supply of oil and chemical resources of the Dead Sea. There is now technology available to mine those resources. It will be granted to him (the Antichrist) to make war with the saints and to overcome them. And authority was given him over every tribe, tongue, and nation. All who dwell on the earth will worship him, whose names have not been written in the Book of Life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world (Rev. 13:7–8). Remember the sign, “When you see the abomination of desolation spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place” (Matt. 24:15).
Stay safe and stay tuned.
Zechariah says it clearly! “And the LORD shall be king over all the earth, and His name one” (Zech. 14:9). You may respond, “God has always been King over this earth, right?” Yes! But not in the sense spoken of here. This world is in disorder and our nation is in confusion. Our government is shaky! Our laws are shaky! Whether we want to admit it or not (even before the pandemic), we no longer live in a “United States of America.” We have become more and more the divided states. The cultural elite (a highly educated wealthy class) that live in major coastal cities, determine the culture that the rest of us absorb. These cultural elites produce the movies that we watch, the books that we read, the songs that we sing, the professors that teach on our university campuses (that we send our children to), and they control the vast media that determines the news that we absorb – daily. There is a constant flow of graduates from major universities who have been brainwashed to believe that man, reason, and science are the only wells of truth worth drinking from. Belief in the God of the Bible is quickly jettisoned from their thinking. Our western culture worships at the shrine of indulgence and gratification. Pleasure-seeking is the motive behind everything we produce and do. Many bow the knee to the shrine of sensual satisfaction. The altar includes technology, sports, fashion, movies – you name it. It is impossible to miss.
We are living through a sexual revolution! In public areas, sex screams at us at every turn – from television to movie screens, from billboards to the pages of magazines. The shelves of bookstores bulge with volumes about sex and graphically display its wares. Television talk shows freely discuss pornography, impotence, premarital sex, group sex, sadomasochism and many other variations of sexual behavior. Sodomy is completely normalized.
High tech media shopping online, large metropolitan malls constantly bombard us with things that we simply cannot live without; new techno gadgets of every kind. Included are new homes, cars, guns, boats, clothes, and sporting equipment.
Our culture is sports crazy. We have hunting and fishing shows to appeal to every sportsman. We have the professional football, college football, major league baseball, college baseball, professional basketball, college basketball, golf, hockey, car racing, boxing, and tennis – and world competitions for each. It never lets up. Parents get their children involved in sports of some kind shortly after they learn to walk. Children learn quickly that winning is everything – losing is for losers. Parents make sure that every child is a winner. It is a self-esteem thing. Sports quickly become far more important than church, in the eyes of children. Oh, we may tell them that church is important, but children quickly see through that. What they see in us is far more impressive than what we say.
Our churches must comply with the world in order to survive. The majority of them are trying. Every church must have a “family life building.” That is where the real action takes place. There must be programs designed for every age group. Whew!
It sounds bizarre, but I have personally enjoyed the quiet during the pandemic. My little farm provides the perfect place to listen and to think. Every so often I imagine I hear blowing in the wind a quiet sadistic malevolent chuckle. Why? God’s Word tells me that Satan is the prince of this world and the god of this age and he blinds us to the truth (John 12:31; 2 Corinthians 4:4). In fact – God’s word says that the devil now holds the title deed to all the kingdoms of this earth. That’s impossible you say. But he has proof of ownership. It is verified when he offered these kingdoms to Jesus Christ. He took Christ to a high mountain and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time – along with all their glory. That’s impressive. Catch the glimpse. He told our Lord that all the kingdoms of the world have been delivered into his hands. And not only that but he can give them to whomever he chooses (Lk. 4:5-7). The devil offered Christ everythingjust to worship him. Jesus did not indicate that the offer was bogus, He just told Satan to worship God and Him only. John fully agreed with Christ saying that the whole world lies under the sway of the wicked one (1 John 5:19). The wicked one is very good at what he does.
I think I get it now – the truth of the words of Zechariah that the LORD shall be king over all the earth makes perfect sense. Catch the future tense – shall be! God is not now the King the way He is going to be king. Wait! Is God sovereign? Yes! Is He the King of Kings and Lord of Lords? Yes! Does He control Satan? Yes! And God is now chuckling behind the chuckler. Jesus Christ will one day hold the real title deed to the earth in His hands. He will take it from His Father – the real owner. “And I looked, and behold, in the midst of the throne and of the four living creatures, and in the midst of the elders, stood a Lamb as though it had been slain, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God sent out into all the earth. Then He came and took the scroll out of the right hand of Him who sat on the throne” (Rev. 5:6-7). One day the Lamb will open this scroll – the title deed to this world – and take it back from Satan the usurper. One day the devil’s time will end, and then will come “the days of the King.” One day when we stand before Him, we will wish we had lived [now] the way we should have lived. Many long for that day. Stay safe and stay tuned.
God is passionate for Zion (Jerusalem) with great passion. Christ’s throne will one day be located in Jerusalem. He will return to Jerusalem and dwell in its midst. Jerusalem will be called the city of truth, the mountain of the Lord of hosts, the holy mountain (Zech. 8:1-3). Many peoples and strong nations shall come to seek the Lord of hosts in Jerusalem. There will come a time when ten men from every language of the nations will grab the sleeve of a Jewish man, saying, “Let us go with you, for we have heard that God is with you [to Jerusalem]” (Zech. 8:22-23). How incredible is that?
The book of Isaiah, written 500 years before Christ, states that there is coming a time when peace will reign over this earth. Isaiah described a Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace yet to come who will bear all the responsibility of governing this world. This was simply not true during Jesus’s first coming. There was no peace on earth and goodwill toward men during His life – like that being spoken of here. There is coming a time when the King will sit upon the throne of David and rule over His kingdom. Every conflict will end in swift and fair judgment, and justice will prevail (Isa. 9:6–7).
Micah wrote, “The mountain of the Lord’s house shall be established on the top of the mountains and exalted above the hills [the highest mountain on earth] and peoples shall flow into it. Many nations shall come and say let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob. He will teach us His ways, and we shall walk in His paths. For out of Jerusalem the law shall go forth and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem. He shall judge between many peoples, and rebuke strong nations afar off” (Micah 4:1–3a). The time is coming when the moon will be disgraced and the sun ashamed. Why? Because Lord of hosts will reign on Mount Zion and in Jerusalem and before His elders, gloriously (Isa. 24:21–23). Notice how often “Jerusalem” is mentioned!
It is true that believers today are saved by God’s magnificence grace, apart from the works of the law (Gal. 2:21; 3:21). We live our Christian lives by grace and not by the works of the law (Col. 2:6; Titus 2:11–12). But God has never abrogated or done away with His Law given at Mount Sinai some three thousand years ago (Ex. 19–20). Also, God’s laws instituted at creation—laws concerning marriage, one man for one woman for life (Gen. 2:24), and the killing of another human being (Gen. 9:6), and honoring the Sabbath (Gen. 2:1–3)—have been imposed by Him from the beginning and have never changed. These laws have everything to do with the coming of a child and His reign upon an earthly kingdom.
Speaking of this child we turn to history written some 500 years before Christ. God had sent Isaiah to Ahaz, the king of Judah, to tell him that Syria, Ephraim, and the son of Remaliah, had plotted against him – to tear a hole in the wall protecting Jerusalem and set up a king for themselves. Isaiah told Ahaz that the plot against him would not stand. He told Ahaz to ask for a sign from God that the plan would fail. Ahaz refused! Isaiah’s response is often used (at Christmas) but seldom explained. He told this king that God Himself would give him a sign. He said that a virgin would conceive and bear a Son and call His name Immanuel (Isa. 7:14).
God predicted that an evil king would come against Jerusalem to destroy it. This one is called, “the Assyrian.” Note as you read the following passages, the definite article “the,” as in “the Assyrian.” It is speaking of a special person (Isa. 10:24; Isa. 14:25; Isa. 19:23; Isa. 52:4; Hos. 11:5; Micah 5:5-6). Isaiah told Ahaz that victory will lie in the hands of a virgin born child. Amazing! “The Assyrian” speaks of the Antichrist who will come against Jerusalem.
With that in mind, fast forward and hear the words of the Messiah. He was going away to prepare a place for his disciples and return (Jn. 14:1-3). They knew that He had promised to come back. Now visualize a magnificent gold-plated temple that took Herod some 70 years to complete. It was beautiful beyond description. The morning sun reflecting off it was so bright one would have to shield their eyes. The disciples called our Lord’s attention to it.
Jesus jarred them by telling them that the temple was going to be completely destroyed (Matt. 24:2; Mk. 13:2) What? This provoked many questions but one that was special. What shall be the sign (notice again the definite article) of your coming (the one overwhelming can’t miss sign). Jesus’ answer is so very important! He said “When you see the abomination of desolation spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place. Whoever reads let him understand” (Matt. 24:15). Ponder this! The Assyrian mentioned above, and this abomination of desolation spoken of by Daniel the prophet, are one and the same person. In fact, this person goes by many names as we will see. The sign here must take us back to words spoken by Daniel – and it will. Stay safe and stay tuned.