July 2, 2023
This article is based on Pastor Adrian Rogers' message, The Beginning of the End.
Are you troubled about the things happening in the world? Nothing has gotten out of control. There are three categories of people: those who are afraid, those who don't know enough to be afraid, and those who know their Bibles.
What is eschatology? It is theological study of Bible prophecies concerning the end of the world. So, what does the Bible say about the End Times?
…It is a righteous thing with God to repay with tribulation those who trouble you, and to give you who are troubled rest with us when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with His mighty angels, in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who do not know God, and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.
You who are troubled, rest. Our Lord is on His way.
The word “revealed” in 2 Thessalonians 1:7 is the word apocalypse. An apocalypse means an unveiling. Jesus’ glory and majesty are veiled today, and He is despised, ridiculed, and made the butt of jokes. But People will one day see Him as He is!
The Bible says, “This same Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will so come in like manner as you saw Him go into heaven” (Acts 1:11b). The Son of God is coming literally, bodily, back to this Earth.
“But to you who fear My name the Sun of Righteousness shall arise with healing in His wings; and you shall go out and grow fat like stall-fed calves.” (Malachi 4:2). Jesus’ return is like the sunrise in two ways: you can't hurry it up, and you can't stop it. It comes on time.
He comes, in that Day, to be glorified in His saints and to be admired among all those who believe…
When Jesus comes, we will be made like Him. We will be dazzled at His transforming love. Think of those of us who were stubborn and unbelieving, and then were reached by His grace. Think of those who were demonized by drugs, alcohol, pride, and lust, ignorant and stumbling in darkness, who will now be made like the Lord Jesus!
Is Jesus perfect? So will we be. Is Jesus prophet, priest, and King? So will we be. We will look at that redeemed multitude and admire the Lord Jesus!
You don't become like Jesus by doing good works, being baptized, or giving money—only by believing in Him. Who is going to admire the Lord Jesus when He comes again? Who will be transformed? “Those who believe.” And not one of them will be lost.
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.
Somebody had written a letter to the church in Thessalonica and signed Paul’s name to it. It was a forgery, saying, “the day of the Lord is at hand; the rapture has taken place, and you missed it.” The Thessalonians were all troubled. So Paul said, “Don't be deceived. I didn't write that letter.”
As we get closer to the Second Coming of Jesus Christ, there will be a lot of quacks, charlatans, and cults, and all kinds of things “from God.” Many false prophets will speak lies.
That is all the more reason to open God’s Word and read it. Understand what God says—black print on white paper—interpreted by the Holy Spirit into your heart, so you can be ready for Christ when He comes.
Paul explains in 2 Thessalonians what will happen in days to come.
After the Rapture, Satan will fling one final insult into the face of God through his agent of blasphemy: the Antichrist. This Antichrist will be to Satan what Jesus is to God the Father.
“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” (2 Thessalonians 2:3). What does the Bible say about the Antichrist? Different Bible translations call him the “man of lawlessness,” the “incarnation of wickedness,” the “champion of wickedness,” or “wickedness in human form.”
But Revelation 13 calls him the Beast, and the Antichrist. The prefix anti‑ means two things: “against,” and “instead of.” Jesus said, “I have come in My Father’s name, and you do not receive Me; if another comes in his own name, him you will receive” (John 5:43).
“And now you know what is restraining, that he may be revealed in his own time. For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work; only He who now restrains will do so until He is taken out of the way” (2 Thessalonians 2:6-7). Paul is saying there is a demonic conspiracy against Mankind called “the mystery of lawlessness.” Read the news, see the entertainment, listen to the philosophies of this world—there is an ungodly force working.
But Paul also says there is something currently holding back the ungodly force.
The Holy Spirit’s ministry is to help the saints, but also to hinder Satan. Satan is on a leash now, but when the Church is taken out, all Hell will break loose.
“He who now restrains will do so until He is taken out of the way” (2 Thessalonians 2:7b). What will be taken out? The Church, at the Rapture, and the Holy Spirit who indwells the Church.
The Church is salt and light. (Read Matthew 5:13-16.) Salt cleanses, decontaminates, and preserves. When the salt is taken out of this Earth, there will be rottenness, filth, and stench like never seen before. When we are gathered together at the Rapture to meet Jesus in the air, darkness, and error will encircle the globe as this Antichrist, the man of lawlessness, comes to rule.
Christ’s return will happen in two phases. First, He will come secretly for the Church, His bride. Then He will come back with His bride as King of kings and Lord of lords.
Then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord will consume with the breath of His mouth and destroy with the brightness of His coming.
Christ will consume the Antichrist with “the breath of his mouth”—that is, with His word.
This speaks of the Battle of Armageddon, when Heaven will be opened, and the saints will come with Christ. Revelation 19:15 says that out of Jesus' mouth will go “a sharp sword, that with it He should strike the nations.” The battle will be over. Christ will sit upon the throne, and “the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD as the waters cover the sea” (Isaiah 11:9b).
He who testifies to these things says, ‘Surely I am coming quickly.’ Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus!
If you are not excited about Jesus Christ coming again, you are too much in love with this world, and not enough in love with the Lord Jesus Christ.
2 Thessalonians 1:6-10, 2:1-3,6-8; Acts 1:11; Malachi 4:2; John 5:43; Matthew 5:13-16; Revelation 19:15, 22:20; Isaiah 11:9
For many deceivers have gone out into the world who do not confess Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist. Look to yourselves, that we do not lose those things we worked for, but that we may receive a full reward.
…No prophecy of Scripture is of any private interpretation, for prophecy never came by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit.
Then if anyone says to you, “Look, here is the Christ!” or “There!” do not believe it. For false christs and false prophets will rise and show great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect. See, I have told you beforehand.