“COVID – 19… Is this the End?”
- Isn’t it amazing to you how much people panic? I mean… really?
- We have pandemic in America called the “Coronavirus.” I guess now the News has labeled it COVID-19 I went to the store last Saturday to find no toilet paper, paper towels, napkins, cleaners of all kinds, and bread.
- People have panicked and went out standing in long lines waiting for the stock person to bring out more rolls of toilet paper and etc.
- I have one question…”Where is their faith?”
- Being cautious is one thing, but to panic and jump overboard with anxiety is another.
- Every pestilence that America has had finds people in panic mode going to extreme measures to make sure they are not going to die.
- The disease of CHOLERA is caused by the bacterium Vibrio cholerae, and is very rare in the U.S. Cholera was common domestically in the 1800s but water-related spread has been eliminated by modern water and sewage treatment systems. Nearly all of the cholera cases reported in U.S. are acquired during international travel. U.S. travelers to areas with cholera (for example, parts of Africa, Southeast Asia,or Haiti) may be exposed to Vibrio cholerae.
- The fear of Russia firing the NUCLEAR BOMB on the U.S. led to President John F. Kennedy’s speech on October 6, 1961 about civil defense. He further advises American families to build bomb shelters to protect them from atomic fallout in the event of a nuclear exchange with the Soviet Union.
- Y2K, was a computer flaw. It was also called “Millennium Bug.” This led to anxiety and the Y2K (Year 2000) scare. When complex computer programs were first written in the 1960s, engineers used a two-digit code for the year, leaving out the “19.” As the year 2000 approached, many believed that the systems would not interpret the “00” correctly, therefore causing a major glitch in the system. This little bug led people to buying up all the duct tape and batteries?
- Now COVID-19 has people buying up all the toilet paper, paper towels, napkins, disinfectant sprays and wipes preparing for the worst.
- Do you know what is fascinating to me? The stupidity of people. Their hypocritical perspective on all these calamities.
- People fear all these calamities and run around in panic mode trying to protect themselves and their family, but yet they ignore the warnings of our Lord through the preachers and priests of the biggest calamity yet to come… the Great Tribulation, The battle of Aregedon!
- What people do not realize is that these calamities happen as a result of God’s judgment upon man’s sin. They need to put stock into the doctrines of Jesus Christ and acknowledge their sin, repent and live for Him.
- All these calamities are also the fulfillment of the prophecy of Jesus Christ in Matthew 24…
I. When Will All These Things Happen?
A) What will be a sign of His coming?
- As we look into the prophecy of Jesus Christ let us relate it to what we are experiencing today.
- Look at our text verse of Matthew 24:1…And Jesus went out, and departed from the temple: and his disciples came to him for to shew him the buildings of the temple.
- WHY did the disciples want Jesus to see the temple? Jesus was just leaving the temple.
- They must have been let down because they were so excited about showing Jesus the temple because it was a magnificent structure with each stone in it was 50 ft. long, 24 ft. wide, and 16 ft. deep according to Jewish historian Josephus. The Jews say that it was made of white and green spotted marble (according to the historian called Lightfoot). It also had a lot of gold ornamentation. The entire temple mount had been enlarged by Herod’s engineers.
- The disciples were so impressed and in awe of the temple as was every Jew in Jerusalem. And for Jesus not to be impressed with it must have caused the disciples some sort of disappointment.
- We should learn from Jesus action here to not get caught up in man’s excitement, pride, impressions, and etc.
- Let us look at Jesus’ response to their excitement and wonderment over the new temple in verse 2) And Jesus said unto them, See ye not all these things? Verily I say unto you, There shall not be left here one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down.
- Note Jesus first words here… “…See ye not all these things?” What
“things?” I believe that Jesus was talking about all the things that impressed the apostles that were with him as He gave this Olivet discourse in the Mount of Olives.
- By the way, according to the gospel of Mark 13:3 the apostles that were there were Peter, James, John and Andrew.
- Can you imagine the look on their faces when Jesus predicted that everything they are in wonderment about is going to be destroyed?
- Look at Matthew 24, and verse 3…And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? And what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?
- Three questions are asked here of the disciples…
- “…when shall these things be?”- When is this going to happen?
- “And what shall be the sign of thy coming,”- What kind of warnings should we look for?
- “…and of the end of the world?”- When is the end of the world going to be?
- Isn’t this like people today?
- I believe that the disciples were in panic mode thinking the worst was going to happen especially when Christ says that the temple (a huge, massive edifice) was going to be brought down.
- The reason for the questions was that they wanted to know when to respond and how to plan for the disaster.
- According to Luke19:11, the apostles thought that the Kingdom of God was going to be ushered in immediately.
II. What Are the Signs (Clues, Warnings)
A) False Christ (False Messiahs)
- The Tribulation…Matthew 24:4… And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you. 5) For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many.
- I have for a long time thought that this verse meant that there would be many men who would come and claim that they are the Messiah. I believe that that is partially true.
- I further believe that what is meant here in this passage when Matthew says “For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ;” it means that many people will come into the Kingdom and claim to be a “Christian (Christ-like).”
- The word “man” many times in the bible is referring to mankind in general which could include women and children.
- You know what? We have many false “Christians” today. The numbers are increasing.
- The number of people who repent are less. The number of people who do not admit to fault or sin is growing rapidly.
- People today are waxing colder and accepting sin as an illness rather than iniquity (perversion), transgression (rebellion), or sin against Almighty God.
B) Wars and rumors of wars
- Now look at Matthew 24, and verse 6) And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet.
- Why does Christ tell the disciples (and us today) “…see that ye be not troubled?” Because we are “saved!” God is not going to let us go through the Tribulation which is God’s judgment on the world for their sins against His Son and His children.
- Jesus Christ is our Judge. We will be “tried (tested).” The false Christians that we have to deal with, and the wars and rumors of wars are all a testing of our faith in Him. And there is more testing shown to us in verse 7…
C) Nations and kingdoms will fight
- verse 7a) For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom:
- Right now, all over the world we are hearing of wars, and talks of war.
- verse 7b)“… and there shall be famines,
- There will be shortages (famines) of food, gas, building materials, water (maybe from contamination), medical supplies or immunizations and ect.
- verse 7c) “…and pestilences,
- This is like we are facing today with COVID-19. Not too long ago it was AIDS. These diseases (pestilences) are diseases that kill off many people at a time. Pestilences are also world-wide pandemics.
- verse 7d) “…and earthquakes, in divers places.
- We all know about earthquakes because there are certain areas that are plagued with them, and is dealt with by the people living in those areas of fault lines. Typically we think of California here in the states.
- When Matthew clarifies the places as “in divers places,” he is talking about diverse places meaning all over the world in places that normally doesn’t have earthquakes.
G) The beginning of the end
- Now look at Matthew 24, verse 8…” All these are the beginning of sorrows.”
- This term “…the beginning of sorrows” mentioned by Christ here in this verse is defined as “birth pangs” of a woman in travail (birth labor pain).
- What we must understand is that all of these judgments upon the world for man’s sins against God are issued out AT THE BEGINNING of the end.
- It is God’s warning signs to us Christians (The church, the bride of Christ) to start preparing our hearts and lives to meet our Saviour in the air.
- Note carefully what Jesus our Lord prophecies in verse 9) Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name’s sake.
- This technical term “deliver you up” in the bible is used by the Lord and Jews of that time to mean…handing over a prisoner for punishment.
- Governments have always done this to Christians beginning in Jerusalem and Rome and now world-wide.
- Another thing that we are dealing with today is found in Christ’s prophecy is in verse 10) And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another.
- We Americans take this word for a literal offense. In reality this word means “cause to stumble.” This verse here is suggesting that there will be many people who profess to be believers will fall away from the faith, fall away from their excitement and joy of salvation, and fall away from the church. It also means that many Christians will turn against one another creating a spiritual warfare among brethren.
- Now look at Matthew 24, and verse 11…And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many. 12) And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.
- More prophecy from our Savior includes the rise of “…many false prophets.” These are those who teach and preach false doctrines that deceive people into thinking something that God did not ordain (establish, or create).
- WHY, will there be many false prophets? Jesus tells us… “iniquity shall abound (increase, or multiply).” Iniquity is the sin of perverting the truth of God in to a lie.
- AN EXAMPLE of the perversion of God’s truth (iniquity) is homosexuality. God created woman for man (Adam and Eve) to procreate and complement one another. God did not create man for man (Adam and Steve) with no way to procreate or complement one another.
III. What Are We To Do About These Trials?
A) Endure to the end
- Look at verse 13) But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.
- What does the word “endure” mean?
- Endure means to remain, or stick with it, to last, or to stay and not move. Christ is saying here that those people who do not waiver in their faith, or those who do not jump from faith in Christ to faith in other gods will be SAVED!
- The KJV is not that hard to understand.
- No one likes a quitter. No one likes a person that is all over the place in their behavior or thinking. We get that quite naturally from the God who created us “…in His own image.” God doesn’t like it either.
- More words of Christ need to be considered in Matthew 10:28…And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.
- People today are in fear of mankind with the diseases, and crimes, and etc. when they should fear God who is able to “…destroy both soul and body in hell.”
B) WHEN IS THE END OF THE WORLD?
- Look at verse 14) And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.
- When the “gospel of the Kingdom (God’s word, the Bible)” is preached in every part of the world giving every man, woman, boy or girl the opportunity to accept Jesus Christ as their Savior. That is the answer to the great question… “When is the end of the world?”
- Right now my deaf friends in 2020… we are at the beginning of the end. Jesus may come at any time “…In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye.” (I Cor. 15:52).
- I believe that the reason why God will resurrect us out so quick (twinkling of an eye) is because if we had time to travel between here and heaven, we would be tempted like Lot’s wife and look back on Sodom
- Are you ready if this is the end?
- Putting off salvation is taking a huge risk that you will have another opportunity to escape the Great Tribulation that is to come.