The past one hundred years or so have seen great advances regarding the spread of the gospel all over the globe, where it thrives amid adversity. However, some prosperous Western democracies have seen the numbers of Christians peak and then decline. Seemingly high-powered ministers, along with some of their enthusiastic followers, have succumbed to corruption (in their personal lives, in their finances, or both). Reacting against the ever-increasing perversion all around us, some groups have pursued increasing legalism, leaving them virtually powerless. Many congregations have failed to retain young people and are dwindling as the older saints die off. Church splits have reached epidemic proportions. and have become the bane of Christianity.
How do we return to the purity, power, and unity of the early congregations described in the book of Acts? They turned the world upside down in just a few years, even without any of our modern tools or media. What will it take to finish fulfilling the Great Commission according to the will of God and for there to be a perfect bride, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, when our Lord Jesus Christ returns?
According to Luke, before Jesus ascended, he told his disciples, behold, I shall send the promise of my Father upon you, but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem until ye are endued with power from on high. This promise is still valid. If we are to be clean and effective witnesses for our Lord Jesus Christ, we will be wise to not leave home without being endued with power from on high.
The Promise of Our Father: Of Purity, Power, and Unity in the Holy Spirit
The darkness that will come upon the people of God at the beginning of the day of the Lord shall not be the same as the affliction that came upon her when Jesus came the first time. The end of the age of grace will not be as dark as the end of the age of the law because the [Gentile] people that walked in darkness have seen a great light; those that dwell in the land of the shadow of death, upon them has the light shined.
Yes, it’s true that great apostasy has engulfed much of Western Europe and seems to be making quite a bit of headway in North America. But what about places (to name a few) such as China, Iran, Egypt, Venezuela, Cuba, Brazil, Colombia, Africa, and even India, where the gospel is surging?
Most of the end-time harvest is taking place under great adversity and persecution. So, for now it can be said, As thou hast multiplied the nation [the people of God], thou hast not increased the joy. But the day of the Lord will be the biggest game-changer ever seen in human history. For those among the people of God who have clean hearts when Jesus returns, They shall rejoice before thee as they rejoice in the harvest and as men rejoice when they divide the spoil, even as all the kingdoms of this world crumble and come down. The vision of Isaiah is a prophetic hub placed in the middle of the Scriptures with ties to almost every book in the Bible (most are footnoted in this work). There are living parables of events that actually happened during the lifetime of Isaiah, prophecies regarding Judah and Jerusalem with both a near and a far fulfillment, all interwoven with messianic prophecy depicting events surrounding the first and second comings of Jesus Christ, the final judgment, and the new creation with new heavens and a new earth.
A central theme of Isaiah relates to the day of the LORD (as does the book of Revelation). We know there is a special blessing on the seventh day (Genesis 2:3). Scripture also defines what some call a “prophetic day” mentioned in both the unique Psalm attributed to Moses: For a thousand years in thy sight are but as yesterday when it is past and as a watch in the night (Psalm 90:4), and by Simon Peter: But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day before the Lord is as a thousand years, and a thousand years are as one day (2 Peter 3:8).
Human history has now entered into the beginning of the seventh millennium since the creation of Adam, according to the years and generations meticulously recorded in Scripture. There is, however, the possibility of two distinct timelines—one dating from the creation of Adam and the other dating from the fall of man when the present world system founded on lies devised by Satan began. Scripture does not specify exactly when the curse was pronounced, and Adam and Eve were expelled from the Garden of Eden. The original world created by God (and founded on truth) was pronounced “very good.” It’s clear, however, that Satan subverted the authority God had placed on Adam, and this sorry situation will not be corrected until the day of the Lord (the seventh millennium).
We now appear to be in an ambiguous period in which it’s clear (no matter what relatively minor discrepancies there may be in our calendar) that more than six thousand years have passed since the creation of Adam. However, it does not appear that six thousand years have gone by since the fall of man. If the seventh prophetic day begins with the demise of Satan and the promise he will be bound for a thousand years, the first resurrection of those who will reign and rule with Christ for a thousand years, and the return of Jesus Christ, then it’s also clear that the prophesied day of the LORD has not yet begun—although it may be very close.
ASIN : B09XWSS8W8
Publisher : Ransom Press International (April 13, 2022)