Wednesday, March 23, 2011

What are the Signs of the Last Days?

Now, in the NIV Bible, there are 7 instances where the phrase "last days" is specifically mentioned, and in these passages of scripture, we infer that in the last days:
  • the Israelites will return and seek the LORD (Hosea 3:4-5)
  • the temple in Jerusalem will be re-established (Micah 4:1-3)
  • there will be an outpouring of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:17-18)
  • people will be self-centred, materialistic, and hedonistic, yet at the same time, religious  (2 Timothy 3:1-5); indeed, there will be rich people who will continue to hoard their wealth, to live in luxury and self-indulgence, and to abuse their labourers (James 5:1-5, NIV)
  • there will be people who mock the return of Christ (2 Peter 3:3)
Interestingly, Hebrews 1:1-2 suggests that the 'last days' clock has already started ticking -- we gather this from the text "he has spoken to us by his Son", which is in the past tense.

  • For the Israelites will live many days without king or prince, without sacrifice or sacred stones, without ephod or idol. Afterward the Israelites will return and seek the LORD their God and David their king. They will come trembling to the LORD and to his blessings in the last days. (Hosea 3:4-5, NIV)

  • In the last days the mountain of the LORD’s temple will be established as chief among the mountains; it will be raised above the hills, and peoples will stream to it. Many nations will come and say, “Come, let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob. He will teach us his ways, so that we may walk in his paths.” The law will go out from Zion, the word of the LORD from Jerusalem. He will judge between many peoples and will settle disputes for strong nations far and wide. They will beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation will not take up sword against nation, nor will they train for war anymore. (Micah 4:1-3, NIV)

  • In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams. Even on my servants, both men and women, I will pour out my Spirit in those days, and they will prophesy. (Acts 2:17-18, NIV)

  • But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with them. (2 Timothy 3:1-5, NIV)

  • In the past God spoke to our forefathers through the prophets at many times and in various ways, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom he made the universe. (Hebrews 1:1-2, NIV)

  • Now listen, you rich people, weep and wail because of the misery that is coming upon you. Your wealth has rotted, and moths have eaten your clothes. Your gold and silver are corroded. Their corrosion will testify against you and eat your flesh like fire. You have hoarded wealth in the last days. Look! The wages you failed to pay the workmen who mowed your fields are crying out against you. The cries of the harvesters have reached the ears of the Lord Almighty. You have lived on earth in luxury and self-indulgence. You have fattened yourselves in the day of slaughter. You have condemned and murdered innocent men, who were not opposing you. (James 5:1-5, NIV)

  • First of all, you must understand that in the last days scoffers will come, scoffing and following their own evil desires. (2 Peter 3:3, NIV)

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