As you know, I have just recently begun a series based on the Book of Revelation This book is primarily a revealing of Jesus Christ and His role in the last days of time as we know it at the present time.
There are several expressions we will come across in our study – “End Times”, “Last Days”, “Last Time or Times”, “Last Day”, “Last Hour”. Each of these expressions points to a specific period of time. Namely the termination of God’s purpose for a special group of people.
A. Let’s Consider First the Incarnation of Jesus Christ. The term “incarnation” refers to God coming to earth clothed with flesh. He took on human form. He was supernaturally conceived in the womb of the virgin Mary, by the power of the Holy Spirit. (WOW!) (John 1:14; 6:46; 14:8-13; Romans 8:3; Hebrews 2:5-9)
The Apostle Peter tells us in 1:20, “He (Jesus) indeed was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest (revealed) in these last days for you.”
Paul in Galatians 4:4 tells us “But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the law.”
The writer of the book of Hebrews reminds us that over time, God had spoken to us in a variety of ways, but “in these last days has spoken to us by His Son.” (Hebrews 1:2) So, we see that one of the periods of time actually has to do with the coming of Jesus into our world.
B. Another period of time that the Scriptures address has to do with the nation or people of Israel. God is sovereign and He can do whatever pleases Him. It pleased Him to carry out His sovereign plan or purposes through the descendants of Abraham.
In Genesis 12:1-3, we read of a special covenant He made with Abram –
“Now the LORD had said to Abram: ‘Get out of your country, from your family, and from your father’s house, to a land that I will show you. I will make you a great nation. I will bless you and make your name great, and you shall be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who curses you, and in you, all the families of the earth shall be blessed’.”
For the next 2,000 years, God carried out His redemptive plan for the world through His covenant relationship with Israel. They haven’t always been faithful and God has held them accountable. For many years, they ceased to be a nation and they were scattered all over the world. But God, true to His promise established nation among the nations of the world.
If I tried to list for you all that is still going to happen to these people in these last days, I would be writing until Jesus returns. They will experience trouble, (Deuteronomy 4:30; 31:29; Jeremiah 30:24). They will be invaded by an enormous confederation of armies from the North. (Ezekiel 38:16) When it seems like there is no hope, God will intervene and save them. (Romans 11:26-27)
The Jewish people will see Jesus whom they pierced, they will repent and have a favored nation status in the millennial reign of Christ. (Jeremiah 31:31-37; Daniel 2:44-45).
Have you ever wondered why the Jewish people have been hated so much, even down to the present time? It is because God is carrying out His new covenant of grace and Satan hates God and what He loves. If he could destroy Israel, he thinks God’s plan would be set aside and God would be unable to carry out what He promised. The people who love the Jews will be blessed by God.
C. For Many Years We Have Been Living During the Times of the Gentiles — that’s us.
Jesus personally used that term in Luke 21:24.
“And they will fall by the edge of the sword and be led away captive into all the nations. And Jerusalem will be trampled by Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled.” At the present time, the world is dominated by Gentile nations and that will continue until the end of the tribulation when Christ will come with the armies of heaven and put an end to Gentile rule and establish His own 1,000-year reign. It will be a reign of peace, justice, and righteousness. (You should faithfully attend the Revelation series to get the whole story.)
D. We are now living in what is called the Church Age.
The church was born on the Day of Pentecost when the Holy Spirit came upon the followers of Christ and 3,000 were born again, in a single day. (Acts 2)
Jesus personally used the term, “church” before there was a church. He said, “I will build My church.” (Matthew 16:18; 18:17)
He is the Head of the church. (Ephesians 5:23)
We have been given the Great Commission to “go and make disciples.” (Matthew 28:18-20) Jesus said that just as the Father sent Him, He now is sending us.” (John 17:18)
Many of us believe that the church age will end with the rapture, when Christ returns for His bride, the church, and takes us away to be with Him in the Father’s house. (John 14:1-6; 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18)
The coming of Christ for his church could take place at any moment. What an incredible experience that will be! We are admonished to be ready. I Pray that each of you reading this meditation has received Christ as Savior and LORD and that you are walking in all the light He sheds on your path.