Monday, June 17, 2024
Monday, June 17, 2024
HomeAll The NewsSTAND FIRM: The End Times Big Picture

STAND FIRM: The End Times Big Picture

In this second year of “Stand Firm & Live Epic” articles, I want to backtrack and provide some foundational articles for understanding the events of the last days. I began with examining the different views, but now I’d like to put those together and zoom out to see the big picture of the end times.

Every prophecy teacher has a timeline, and I’m not any different. With my timeline, I have tried to boil it down to only a few events. The idea is, if we know these events, then we know the ebb and flow of not only the last days, but even the events throughout this age. My simplified timeline is posted above. From our study of the views, this timeline is futuristic, premillennial and “some point-in-the-final-seven-years” rapture view.

First, notice that there are four different colors of the timeline. It’s divided into this current age, the final seven years of this age, the Millennial Kingdom and the New Heavens and New Earth. Though we’re told a lot in Scripture about the end of the age, we know for sure from Daniel 9 that there is a final seven years. These final seven years are often referred to as the tribulation and start with the Antichrist in power to make or strengthen an agreement with Israel. This agreement promises peace for Israel for seven years (Daniel 9). These kick-off events are symbolized by the upside-down cross, which represents the Antichrist and the peace sign, which represents the agreement. That agreement starts the final seven years.

Not pictured are some events that lead into the final seven years. First, the Antichrist has a rise to power. This rise is portrayed in Daniel 7 and 8. Revelation 17 also shows some of this rise. We also have the “beginning of birth pains” found in Matt. 24:1-14. These events likely happen before the final seven years and carry over into the first half of the final seven years. Another event leading into the final seven years is the rise and rule of Mystery Babylon. This entity rises with the Antichrist, but eventually, the Antichrist turns against this entity. Mystery Babylon is talked about in Revelation 17 and 18.

Next, in the middle of the final seven years is the abomination that leads to desolation. In the timeline, it’s depicted as the skull and crossbones. This is the moment where the Antichrist sets himself or an image of himself up in the temple. He also turns against Israel at that time. This ushers in the “Time of Jacob’s Trouble” or “Great Tribulation,” which is a three-and-half-year campaign of the Antichrist against Jews (Jer. 30:4-9, Dan. 12:1-2, Matt. 24:15-21, II Thess. 2:4). This campaign culminates in the Battle of Armageddon (Rev. 16:12-14,16; 19:11-16, 19-21). This battle is depicted in the timeline as the crossed swords.

At the end of the Antichrist’s campaign against Israel, Jesus returns with the army of Heaven, the resurrected and raptured saints. This is represented on the timeline by the rider on the horse. This is the return of Jesus. Before this physical return, there has been the resurrection, rapture and gathering of us believers. Due to the different views or theories, it’s depicted in the timeline with the cloud covering the whole final seven years. The possible timings of the resurrection, rapture and gathering can be at the start of the final seven years, the middle, before God’s wrath or at the end.

When Jesus returns and defeats the Antichrist, a new age is ushered in. In this new age, Jesus will physically rule on earth. We will be there in our perfect, glorified bodies. There will also be survivors from the tribulation who have finite bodies. We will coexist with them and their children. Satan is bound and locked up at the start of this 1,000-year reign of Christ (Rev. 20:1-6). In the timeline, the crown represents the start of the Millennial Kingdom, and the lock represents Satan being locked up.

This physical kingdom continues for 1,000 years, at which time, according to Revelation 20, Satan is let loose. He then causes a rebellion. In this rebellion, he leads an attack on Jesus and His people. This is much like the end of this current age. Again, Jesus wins, and Satan is thrown into the Lake of Fire (Rev. 20:7-10). This is represented in the timeline with the lock that is unlocked and the trophy for Jesus’ win.

Following this final defeat of Satan, the earth and heavens are made new. The Earth becomes a return to Eden (Rev. 21-22), and the amazing city of Revelation 21, the New Jerusalem, comes down. In this time, God the Father comes and dwells with us. We, like Adam and Eve, can walk with Him in the cool of the day.

This is very simplified, but if we can get these events and their flow in our minds, we can have a solid foundation for the events that will come. And as you can see for us believers, it isn’t the end, but the start of so much more.

— Jake is the newest state missionary and would love to share about the work in Northwest Arkansas and encourage your church to stand firm. (standfirmministries.com)

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