For more than two thousand years believers and followers of Christ have been anticipating His ‘Second Coming’ appearance on earth. In biblical scripture, Jesus himself tells us His return will be prior to the end of “the last generation” (Mt 24:34). The “Last Generation” is believed to be those born and living after the 1948 reconstituting of Israel as a nation (May 14, 1948).
Due to prophecy’s often perceived convoluted presentations of events (confusing for the reader, not for God nor His prophets) it’s fairly easy to get tripped up in our studies or understanding. However, even if this is the case don’t become discouraged or disheartened. The reward of prophecy is that its validation is spoken by God and relayed to mankind through the prophets.
The seven tribulation years are divided into two specific time frames, each 1260 days or 42 months in length. At the mid-point of these two time periods several actions will occur that will change the entire world as never before in human history. Every living human will become part of these events.
As described previously, the first 42 months will prove to be filled with dichotomies. There will be ‘peace and security’ on one hand with horrific cosmic and environmental disturbances pitted against the other. There will be spiritual revival contrasted with hedonist humanism on steroids. There will be political intrigue and consternation gnawing at a growing clamor for unification. There will be a movement towards one world religion with the elevation of religious leaders coming together to benefit all mankind verses efforts to draw others to Christ.
The world will appear to be making progress as never before, even inviting widespread recognition of Israel as an economic and military power. Adjunct to this identification will stand the Two Witnesses audibly at odds with those reconstructing or using the Third Temple in Jerusalem for worship services. Amidst the orthodoxy of fundamental Rabbinical Judaism practiced in the Temple, a growing movement of Messianic Judaism rears its head for acknowledgment. The transition in these years will be overt and subtle at the same time. An appearance of new normality will be peppered with untold disasters wedging themselves to split apart perceived advancements.
The ‘Two Witnesses’ will be sharing perilous warnings heralded by many yet disdained by others. Their prominence will be a focal point dividing many politically and religiously. These months will be viewed as the ‘best of times and the worst of times.’ They will be priming the world for the moment the Antichrist morphs from world renown leader to emissary of Satan as the world’s dictatorial ruler.
At Mid-Tribulation events will move quickly over a short period (days, perhaps a few weeks) initiated with the blowing of the Fifth Trumpet in heaven. It’s the Mid-Tribulation events that will literally change the world with the coming domination of the Antichrist and his forces. The most evident immediate action will be the invasion and vanquishing of Jerusalem. Followed by the deaths and resurrections of the Two Witnesses. The occupation of the Third Temple by the Antichrist and his elimination of Jewish worship. Establishment of the Antichrist’s Abomination of Desolation image at the Mercy Seat by the false prophet. And the decree that institutes the ‘Mark of the Beast’ for all the world’s inhabitants.
These actions will take a short time to establish and initiate, but they will be part and parcel of domination by the Antichrist in supplication to Satan. A decree will go out for all; accept or be put to death. The method of identification as an Antichrist acolyte will be the taking of the Mark of the Beast. A visible ‘mark’ on the forehead or hand. Those with the mark will be allowed to live, to ‘buy and sell’. Those without the mark will be banned economically and exposed, to be killed.
This ‘Mark of the Beast’ will be the outward evidence of capitulation and acceptance of the Antichrist and Satan. All who take the mark will be condemned with Satan by God. This mark will be the definitive divide between those who will experience eternal damnation with Satan, the Antichrist, and False Prophet and those who may be martyred for Christ in the Last Days. Should you still be alive during these months, choosing death instead of ‘the mark’ will keep you from eternal hell, even though that decision may cost your life.
The second half years of the tribulation will be as no other in human history (Mt 24:21).
Join me next time in Part 7 when we identify news headlines and stories warning of prophecy precursors being revealed before our eyes.
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