August 16, 2018
“And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh.” Luke 21:28.
Times are tough, but is it really all that bad today? Haven’t crimes happened since the Garden of Eden? Yes, they have, but it’s getting worse. That shouldn’t surprise Christians because Scripture tells us things will get worse as we draw closer to the end of time. “This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.” 2 Timothy 3:1. Perilous? That English word doesn’t have quite the impact that the Greek word “chalepos” has. This word means “harsh, fierce, savage”. Is it really that bad today? Most of us don’t catalog news headlines. When a perilous event happens we watch the news, feel sickened, then move on because the media moves on. When the next big event happens we’re horrified, but then move on once again. These perilous events are happening more frequently with violence and hatred growing stronger. The end times are upon us, but are things really all that bad today?
In telling Timothy of the perilous last days, Paul described various things to watch for.”For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, without natural affection, trucebreakers ,false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.” 2 Timothy 3:2-5. All of these attitudes have been around for a long time, but it’s getting worse. The self-centeredness of so many people is astounding. Whatever they can get without giving is fine. The natural affection that parents have for their children is growing cold. Every time I read of a parent who’s abused or killed their child my heart breaks. The natural affection of a godly marriage is being replaced by perversions of one night stands and homosexual relationships. That’s far from natural. Blasphemers? The mocking of our Lord is getting more outspoken and “hate speech” laws protect everyone except Christians. Despisers of those who are good? Today good is considered bad and bad is considered good. When a so-called comedienne can gain fame for pretending to hold up the severed head of the US President, that’s having a cold heart. We are in perilous times, but are things really all that bad today?
To get a better idea of what “chalepos” means, we need to turn to Scripture. This particular word is used twice in the New Testament. Paul uses it in 2 Timothy 3:1, but the other place it’s used describes demon possession. “And when he was come to the other side into the country of the Gergesenes, there met him two possessed with devils, coming out of the tombs, exceeding fierce, so that no man might pass by that way.” Matthew 8:28.
This time “chalepos” is translated “fierce”. Matthew lets us know in one word how evil this demon possession was, but Mark uses more words to describe it. “And when he was come out of the ship, immediately there met him out of the tombs a man with an unclean spirit, who had his dwelling among the tombs; and no man could bind him, no, not with chains: because that he had been often bound with fetters and chains, and the chains had been plucked asunder by him, and the fetters broken in pieces: neither could any man tame him. And always, night and day, he was in the mountains, and in the tombs crying, and cutting himself with stones.” Mark 5:2-5. In Luke 8:27 we find out that this man had been demon-possessed for a long time and also that he wore no clothes. That’s pitiful but he chose this. In order to possess a person, demons need to be invited in. By using mind-altering drugs or dabbling with other occult practices you give them an invitation. Are things really all that bad today? Many people have had sexual encounters with demons. Do you believe that? If you haven’t done any research then you probably think this doesn’t happen. Demons are very real and very evil, and the occult is permeating our society.
The entertainment industry is leading way in making demon encounters seem normal. Mind altering drugs allow demons to have possession of a person and that starts at a young age. A very large number of children have prescribed drugs to alter their minds. Are they unruly? Give ’em drugs. Do they have too much energy? Give ’em drugs. Do some research on the mass shooters and you’ll find that they’re all on some form of mind altering prescription drug and most hear voices telling them to kill. Also, pay attention to the rising number of public nudity coupled with violence and superhuman strength. These things are demonically inspired. Occult practices are on the rise and are openly embraced today. It’s now the theme of movies and television programs. The internet can be a wonderful tool used to spread God’s word or it can be used for evil, such as the slender man delusion which was the evil behind two young girls who brutally stabbed a friend numerous times and left her for dead. Indeed, these are perilous times, but are things really all that bad today?
There’s no doubt that Satan is pure evil and he’s a liar. Satan and his minions encourage violence and desire to destroy humans. Satan rebelled against God and a third of the angels followed him in that rebellion. These unholy angels mated with human women and had offspring called Nephilim. They corrupted the human genome, but these evil beings also corrupted all of creation and God was forced to do something to protect the remaining uncorrupted creation. “And the LORD said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repenteth me that I have made them.” Genesis 6:7. Noah and his family remained true to God and stayed genetically pure. God’s judgment came by a flood and destroyed everything except for Noah, his family, and some animals who survived in the Ark. Jesus said that the end times would be like in the days of Noah. “But as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.” Matthew 24:37.
All of creation was being corrupted and people were just going on as if all was well. Are things really all that bad today? Scientists in labs around the world are corrupting the genetics of humans, animals, and plants. Babies are being born with a triple helix DNA instead of the normal double helix. Human/animal hybrids are grown in Petri dishes. Food is being genetically tampered with, pigs and sheep are genetically altered to grow human organs, and so much more horrible tampering with God’s creation happens around the world. If that isn’t bad enough there’s artificial intelligence. Have you seen Sophia? This robot looks human, carries on spontaneous conversations in any language, and has a sense of humor. Elsewhere, scientists are enhancing humans to have super-human abilities. Look into transhumanism and be horrified. Science fiction of yesterday is science reality today, and that’s not good.
When Jesus walked the Holy Land with His disciples there was a lot of persecution and many of the Jewish people were looking for the Messiah to rescue them. Unfortunately, most of them didn’t recognize Him. As the time drew near for Jesus to be crucified a few of His disciples asked Him about the end of the age. At that point they didn’t know they were chosen to establish the Christian faith nor did they know about the Rapture, so they didn’t ask about that. They wanted to know about the last days. Jesus gave a long list of what to look for, including “For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places.” Matthew 24:7.
These things have always happened, but it’s all getting worse as we move closer to Daniel’s 70th week. Today we see civil unrest within nations and wars among the nations. The United States is on the brink of a civil war with the demon-inspired hatred and venom from the liberals becoming more and more violent. In Venezuela, the people are ready to rebel against their socialist government. The people of Iran are turning against their rulers. In South Africa, the government is taking land away from white farmers who have been there for generations. Muslim immigration into non-Muslim nations is causing tension as they try to implement sharia law. Tensions between nations around the world is at an all-time high. Jesus went on to talk about persecution, betrayal, false prophets, “And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.” Matthew 24:12. Beginning in Revelation chapter 6 we read about what happens after the Rapture. God’s wrath will be poured out upon all who’ve rejected Christ and remain on earth. The judgments begin as Jesus, the Lamb that was slain, begins to open the seals of a scroll. When He opens the second seal a red horse is released. “And there went out another horse that was red: and power was given to him that sat thereon to take peace from the earth, and that they should kill one another: and there was given unto him a great sword.” Revelation 6:4.
The word “kill” is translated from the Greek word “sphazo” which means to butcher or slaughter and put to a violent death. Are things really all that bad today? Remember, the question the disciples asked was about the end, not about the Rapture, and Jesus described events leading up to the Rapture, as well as afterward. As the end of time draws near we see these signs all coming clearly into view. As that time period looms on the horizon the days are becoming more and more evil. It seems as if every day there’s a news story of someone killing their girlfriend then eating her or a child being kidnapped, abused, and killed. In America, the radical left seem to be crazed by demons as they violently attack anyone who has a different opinion. Hearts are waxing colder and colder. Times are indeed becoming perilous.
Are things really all that bad today? Yes. The end times events have begun and are becoming stronger. As Christians, we’re admonished to live differently than the worldly people around us. “For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world” Titus 2:11-12. The world we live in is our temporary home. No matter how bad things may seem today our eternal home is with our Lord. Only Christians have hope for eternal life, whether through our own death or by the Rapture. “Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people zealous of good works.” Titus 2:13-14.
If you haven’t accepted the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ then you will face the horrendous time of Great Tribulation. Accept Christ’s sacrifice now because tomorrow may be too late. If you have accepted Him, then start living your life to honor Him.
God bless you all,
Ron and Nathele Graham’s previous commentaries archived at our Home Page under Newsletter Archives.
All original scripture is “theopneustos” God breathed.
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