Last Day SignsThe Bible frequently references events concerning the last days. Last day events occur between the time of Christ's first advent and His second coming. Some of the events mentioned refer specifically to the "Time of the End", which is the time just before Christ's second coming. Many events have already occurred, revealing that we are remarkably close to the end of this age! As you study the last day events listed below, keep in mind the following points:
- We are supposed to know when the end is near (Matt. 24:3-4, Luke 21:31, 34).
- We will not know the specific date (Matt. 24:36, Luke 12:40).
- We should prepare and watch by:
- Being patient and stablishing our hearts [turn resolutely towards God] (James 5:7-10).
- Being aware that we live in the time of the end (Luke 17:26-30, Dan. 12:10).
- Keeping our lamps full of oil (Holy Spirit) (Matt. 25:1-13).
1. False Christs & False Prophets(Matt. 24:5,11,23-24, Mark 13:22, II Peter 2:1) We can recognize the true Christ because when He returns to earth every eye will see him (Rev. 1:7), He will return in the clouds (Acts 1:11), and it will be loud (I Thes. 4:16, I Cor. 15:52). It will not be secret or revealed to only some people (Luke 17:22-24). Despite this knowledge, many will be deceived, because false Christs and false prophets perform marvelous miracles, compelling signs and wonders, even appearing as angels of light (2 Cor. 11:14).
We can recognize true prophets, because:
- a) They will believe that Jesus Christ is of God and already came to this earth in human form (I John 4:1-3).
- b) Their predictions accurately happen (Deut. 18:22). Note: Conditional prophecies might not happen if conditions are met.
- c) They will uphold and not contradict the Bible or seek to change any of its teachings (Isaiah 8:20, 2 Tim. 3:16).
2. Wars(Matt. 24:6-8, Mark 13:8, Luke 21:9-10) The 20th century has witnessed an escalation of wars like no other period in history. The expected peace that many of these wars promised, has not been realized. (See Daniel 11:40-45 for more information about World War I and II in prophecy.)
3. Famines(Matt. 24:7, Mark 13:8, Luke 21:11) Drought and flooding have increasingly contributed to food shortages. It is now estimated that a staggering third of the world is starving.
4. Water-Related Disasters(Luke 21:25-26) Hurricanes and tidal waves are among the most feared and powerful disasters. Recent studies show the strength of hurricanes have been increasing over the past 25 years. The resulting terror and havoc of "roaring" waves was readily seen in Hurricane Katrina in 2005 and the Asian Tsunami in 2004 that killed 225,000.
5. Pestilence(Matt. 24:7, Luke 21:11) Plagues and disease continue to take countless lives despite the amazing breakthroughs of modern science. Cancer, AIDS, Malaria, Tuberculosis and Cholera are just a few of the epidemics that plague our world.
- a) A Great Earthquake: (Rev. 6:12-13) On Nov. 1, 1755, the great Lisbon Earthquake occurred. It was felt in Europe, Africa, America, Greenland and the West Indies, pervading an extent of not less than four million square miles. It caused destructive tidal waves, shook and split mountains, swallowed villages and started raging fires. In six minutes, 60,000 people perished.
- b) Earthquakes in diverse places: (Matt. 24:7, Mark 13:8, Luke 21:11) Statistics show that the number of major earthquakes has been increasing. The earthquakes that hit densely populated areas cause massive loss of life and severe property damages.