July 16, 2023
This article is based on Pastor Adrian Rogers' message, Signs of the Times.
The temple of Jerusalem was one of the most magnificent buildings ever built. One day Jesus’ disciples were admiring it, saying, “Lord, look at it!”
They were not prepared for His response.
Jesus said to them, “Do you not see all these things? Assuredly, I say to you, not one stone shall be left here upon another, that shall not be thrown down.”
Jesus was talking about the invasion of the Romans, which would come forty years later under Titus in AD 70.
Interestingly, the Romans were careful to preserve the temples of the places they subjugated. Josephus, a historian who accompanied Titus to Jerusalem, said Titus gave orders that the temple was not to be destroyed.
But somehow, in the battle for Jerusalem—nobody knows how—the temple caught fire. Those great cedars of Lebanon burned and came down in a heap of ruins. Then the plunderers came, prying apart those great stones, looking for treasure. The stones were carried away to become other buildings.
Today, not one stone is left upon another.
As He sat on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to Him privately, saying, “Tell us, when will these things be? And what will be the sign of Your coming, and of the end of the age?”
When they asked about His “coming,” Jesus’ disciples were asking Him when He would come to reign. And by “the end of the age,” the disciples did not mean the end of planet Earth—they meant the end of the age. They were asking, “When will these things happen? Lord, when are you going to take over?”
The rest of Matthew 24 is Jesus’ answer.
And Jesus answered and said to them: “Take heed that no one deceives you. For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and will deceive many.”
Why will false christs deceive so many? “For false christs and false prophets will rise and show great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect” (Matthew 24:24). “Miracle workers” will do incredible things through the power of Satan. Believe in miracles, but do not build your faith on miracles.
Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world. By this you know the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is of God, and every spirit that does not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is not of God. And this is the spirit of the Antichrist, which you have heard was coming, and is now already in the world.
You will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not troubled; for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom.
Our Lord said that man would never learn to live in peace on this Earth. The Antichrist will promise peace, but peace will not come until Jesus, the Prince of Peace, comes.
The spread of terrorism, bombings, assassinations, sabotage—the Bible tells us this is what will happen in the last days. Man has not solved the problem of war, nor will he until Jesus comes.
And there will be famines, pestilences, and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of sorrows.
Other Bible translations say, “the beginning of the birth pains.” Labor pains increase in two ways: in frequency and in intensity.
Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and kill you, and you will be hated by all nations for My name’s sake.
Persecution in the Last Days will be because of the name of Jesus. They don't mind if you pray; just don't mention that name. You can be in favor of religion, but leave out Jesus’ name. Is that not true?
And then many will be offended, will betray one another, and will hate one another.
When the persecution gets hotter, people will leave Bible‑preaching, Christ‑honoring churches. The Apostle John said, “They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us; but they went out that they might be made manifest, that none of them were of us” (1 John 2:19).
Many churches are filled with “user‑friendly evangelism”—no redemption by blood, no lordship of Christ, no repentance, no everlasting Hell. No following Jesus to the death. When persecution begins, they will leave, because they are churches of empty people who have never known Christ.
Then many false prophets will rise up and deceive many.
False Christs are “religious,” but false prophets don’t have to be. “False prophet” means anybody who speaks with authority saying, “This is right; this is wrong.” The world is filled with them.
The mark of a false prophet is self‑interest. A true prophet speaks not of self‑interest, but of the interest of Almighty God.
And because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold.
The crime rate is soaring. For further information, read the news.
Because iniquity and sin abound, love grows cold. We find ourselves where we cannot trust strangers.
Why does lawlessness abound? Because the false prophets say there is no absolute standard of right and wrong. If there is no absolute standard, the moral anchor is gone, and Man goes down into a whirlpool of filth and debauchery.
But he who endures to the end shall be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come.
In the Last Days, there will be people loving Jesus. They will get a bulldog grip on the truth and say, “Jesus Christ is Lord.” Christians are not saved because they endure; they endure because they are saved.
These other signs have always been happening, but this one is the climax. The Bible does not say that everybody will be saved, but it says that the Gospel will eventually be preached in all the world, and then the end will come.
Is it not incredible how Jesus so aptly described what would happen? If man had cured all diseases or solved the problem of war, then Jesus Himself would have been a false prophet. But biblical prophecy is being fulfilled exactly. You can trust the Bible.
Our duty is to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and in order to do that, the people of the Church need to move up one step higher. Get deadly serious about living the Christian life and sharing Jesus Christ.
Matthew 24:1-14, 24; 1 John 2:19, 4:1-3
But concerning the times and the seasons, brethren, you have no need that I should write to you. For you yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so comes as a thief in the night. For when they say, “Peace and safety!” then sudden destruction comes upon them, as labor pains upon a pregnant woman. And they shall not escape.
Now, brethren, concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our gathering together to Him, we ask you, not to be soon shaken in mind or troubled, either by spirit or by word or by letter, as if from us, as though the day of Christ had come. Let no one deceive you by any means; for that Day will not come unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition, who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped, so that he sits as God in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God.
But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat; both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up.