I recall when I first wrote this blog piece in Dec 2019, everyone was predicting a wonderous time in 2020. Remember the 20/20 vision analogy? I decided to repost this today as we are going through some tumultuous times. More than ever we need Jesus. PLEASE NOTE THIS WAS WRITTEN PRIOR TO THE PANDEMIC.
Weather anomalies, catastrophic fires, plagues of locusts and rumors of war in Middle East dominate headlines!
END TIMES – 2020?
We are only a few days into a new year and new decade and it would appear that biblical signs of the End Times are beginning to manifest. Incredibly in the first week of 2020 great tension has erupted in the Middle East involving Iran, also known in the bible as Persia/Elam. Ezekiel 38 specifically mentions Persia is an ally of Magog (Russia). Within the last week it has been revealed, through all major news outlets, that Iran has been having meetings with Russia!
In Australia catastrophic wild fires have driven people onto the beaches. 20 people have died, 530 million animals have perished and 1500 homes destroyed. Major evacuations are underway. In addition, the largest plague of locust in a quarter of a century has just hit Africa and the Middle East bringing a new humanitarian disaster for Kenya, Ethiopia and beyond.
END TIMES – Reading the signs?
For years man has been debating what will happen when the End Times begin. What will the signs be and in what order? For some reason, we (collectively speaking of course), tend to focus on this at the beginning of a New Year. Perhaps our expectations are already high and we anticipate the second coming of Jesus all the more. Or maybe it’s because we are at the beginning of something new. Whatever the reason, it’s probably true to state that every believer probably asks themselves the same question – ‘will it be this year?’
Reality check! Over the years many have predicted when Jesus will return. However, in the scriptures, Jesus tells us that no man, nor the angels and not even the Son knows the exact time – only God does. Jesus also understood that man has a terrible record when it comes to reading the signs of the times. Matthew 16:2 & 3,
He answered and said to them, “When it is evening you say, ‘It will be fair weather, for the sky is red’; and in the morning, ‘It will be foul weather today, for the sky is red and threatening.’ Hypocrites! You know how to discern the face of the sky, but you cannot discern the signs of the times. (NKJ)
END TIMES – When is the time?
There is a lot written about the End Times, by great scholars like Paul McGuire with prophetic insight that shed light upon the scriptures. They help us to see what is really going on, give us direction – they help us prepare and watch for Jesus, and we thank God for them. Unfortunately, there are just as many, if not more books written that do nothing but leave one in a state of confusion!
However, the Bible is 100 percent accurate – and you can take that to the bank! I truly believe if you pray and ask God for wisdom and discernment concerning this realm, you will receive it.
What we do know is this – in Matthew 24 the disciples privately asked Jesus about the End Times. Jesus had just exited the temple and everyone had just made their way up to the Mount of Olives. The disciples approached Jesus and asked,
“Tell us,” they said, “when will this happen, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?”
Jesus answered them,
“You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of birth pains…”
Therefore, not only are there great physical signs on the earth but there are cosmic signs in the sky and man’s morality is at an all-time low, with Jesus comparing man’s self-destruction to the times of Noah.
END TIMES – The Good News
2020 is a great number. The number 20 in the Bible symbolizes the cycles of completeness. It is often connected to a perfect period of waiting, labor or suffering that is compared to a trial and then a reward.
The reward is generous and full of God’s love. For instance, Jacob waited 20 years for his wives and to be released from his father-in-law. Canaan King Jabin oppressed the people of Israel for 20 years until Deborah and Barak released them from trouble. God told Abraham if he found 20 righteous men he wouldn’t destroy Sodom and Gomorrah. (source: Biblical Numerology).
Therefore, 2020 is multiplied – a lot! While the world goes through transition, we can all take hope in Jesus’ words…
“And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” Matt 28:20
This article was first written by Karin McBride-Chenoweth in Dec 2019. It was first published on ANCHORING HOPE blog Jan 2020. Karin is an award-winning writer, editor and publisher of Christian and secular works in Europe and the USA. Karin is a US Citizen and lives and works in the USA