What Does the Bible Say About End Time Warnings?
By Betty Miller
We are hearing warnings from all sectors of our
society. There are health warnings, terrorist warnings, economic warnings, weather
warnings, and end-of-the-world warnings. Some warnings are valid, others are simply
the fears of certain people, and have no basis of accuracy. Governments issue warnings
when they feel they are being threatened by invasion or aggression from other powers.
Health agencies warn of contagious diseases that could be spread unless precautions
are taken. We hear of economic warnings when certain indicators in the markets
warrant caution. And of course, our weather agencies monitor the threat of storms,
fires, earthquakes, hurricanes and other weather related dangers.
I want to address a particular kind of warning in
this article, what is popularly known as an "end time" warning. These voices
range from "end-of-the-world" scenarios to end time prophecies depicting all
kinds of foreboding happenings that could threaten our world. Some of these warnings
are valid and credible, while others are just people who want to be seen and heard. Most
of these warnings are coming from the church. However, secular movies and videos
have also been depicting "end time" themes with warnings that the end of the
world could be near.
Should we heed these warnings? How do
we know they are credible? The Bible tells us in 1 Thessalonians 5:21:
"Prove all things; hold fast that which is good." We are not
supposed to believe every warning we hear, but rather we are to "prove all
things." How do we do this? First, we must check out spiritual warnings
to see if they are Bible-based. The next thing we need to do is ask the Lord if the
motives of the ones who are sounding the warnings are pure, and directed out of concern
for the people. Some people prey on people's fears to sell them something, while others
like the attention they receive because of their inflated egos.
The Bible records many warnings throughout its pages. Those who heeded true
warnings from God were spared the predicted consequences. Before we look at some of
these, let us look at the primary dictionary definition of the word "warn": to
tell (a person) of a danger, coming evil, misfortune, etc.; put on guard, caution.
Throughout the history of the world, God has
always made known to his people impending times of trouble, and given them time to prepare
He warned Noah and his family of
the coming flood and directed them how to prepare to survive it.
Hebrews 11:7: "By faith Noah,
being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with fear, prepared an ark to the
saving of his house; by the which he condemned the world, and became heir of the
righteousness which is by faith."
He warned Lot and his family of the
coming destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah and told them to flee.
Genesis 19:14: "And Lot went
out, and spake unto his sons in law, which married his daughters, and said, Up, get you
out of this place; for the LORD will destroy this city. But he seemed as one that mocked
unto his sons in law."
He warned the Pharaoh of Egypt,
through Joseph, of the coming famine and used Joseph to prepare stores of grain during the
seven years of plenty, which saved Egypt and Joseph's family when a seven year famine
followed the times of plenty.
Genesis 41:30-31: "And there
shall arise after them seven years of famine; and all the plenty shall be forgotten in the
land of Egypt; and the famine shall consume the land; And the plenty shall not be known in
the land by reason of that famine following; for it shall be very grievous."
He warned the Israelites living
under Egyptian slavery that the "angel of death" would kill all the first-born
of every family and that they must protect themselves and their families by placing the
blood of a lamb over the door posts, so the angel would "pass over" them.
Exodus 12:23: "For the LORD
will pass through to smite the Egyptians; and when he seeth the blood upon the lintel, and
on the two side posts, the LORD will pass over the door, and will not suffer the destroyer
to come in unto your houses to smite you."
He warned the wicked
people of Ninevah, the capital city of Assyria, of God's coming destruction through Jonah.
When they repented, the judgment was averted and did not come for a number of years.
Jonah 3:4-5: "And Jonah began to enter into the city a day's journey, and
he cried, and said, Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown. So the people of
Nineveh believed God, and proclaimed a fast, and put on sackcloth, from the greatest of
them even to the least of them.
The Y2K Warnings
Some of the past Y2K warnings could be comparable to the warnings given Ninevah.
Warnings were coming from the government, from the technology field and also from
church leaders. Most of the warnings stressed that unless the problems were corrected
before January 1, 2000, we could face major breakdowns in all spheres of our society. We
were warned that we should believe for the best, but prepare for the worst. Although many
of the warnings were extreme, they did accomplish one major purpose -- they ignited the
leaders of the world to begin doing something about the problem. Because the church
prayed and the warnings were heeded, the Y2K disaster was averted.
Now the question arises, "What about all those preparations that took our time,
energy and money?" Were they in vain? I don't think the people living in
the Southeastern part of the USA thought so. Right after the first of the year, one of the
worst ice storms to hit the South occurred, resulting in broken electric lines that took
weeks to repair in some areas. If those people prepared for the Y2K disaster they
had an alternate source of light, heat, and food reserves until things were restored to
normal. Although their preparations were not used for Y2K, this disaster was faced
more comfortably because they had made emergency preparations.
What about those people who still have their supplies? Should they give them away
or keep them? The answer to this question is that you must hear what the Lord is
telling you to do. Wisdom dictates that having some emergency supplies is just a
prudent thing to do. However, if you have large stores of food, you should ask the
Lord if He has need of it, to give to others now, or if you are to keep it for some future
need. Because the Bible refers to the "last days" as a time when great
tribulation will precede the return of Christ, it would be wisdom to make some sort of
physical preparations. However, the greatest preparation that we all need to make
is spiritual preparation. The true prophets of God are still warning of troublous and
perilous times coming to this earth that will include persecution of the saints.
Throughout the church history, a period of almost
2000 years, the Lord has given advanced warnings of the coming persecutions
to His followers, so that they might flee, prepare for the trials spiritually or
physically, or go underground. In almost every one of those situations, it was primarily
the God-fearing remnant who had the discernment to understand the times, to see the
destruction or suffering that was coming, and to prepare (physically and spiritually). The
Lord has always warned and prepared His people for coming
catastrophes, danger, upheaval, persecution or suffering.
One common denominator is, that in almost all of
those times of trouble down through the ages, the great majority of people could not
see the judgments coming. They refused to believe it anything could happen to them.
They were enjoying the good life (eating, drinking and partying) right up until the
disaster overtook them.
As Jesus said regarding the people of Noah's day
in Matthew 24:38, 39: "For as in the days before the flood, people were
eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage up to the day Noah entered the Ark;
and they knew nothing about what would happen until the flood came and took them all away."
A Word From the Lord
Recently the Lord awakened me in the early
morning with a word to warn His people to prepare for the judgements that are just ahead.
He spoke to my heart that the most important preparation was spiritual preparation. He
said that He was continuing to use his prophets and preachers to warn people of the coming
troubles, but most of their warnings were general warnings. He also said that He
would give individual warnings of what to do, and when to do it, to all that were totally
committed to His will, and that they would be protected in the coming days. Those who are
committed and obedient to God will hear specific instructions, not only pertaining to
their safety, but will be given assignments from the Lord with His empowerment to perform
them. These assignments will be His plans for sharing the gospel with the world. He
is going to use a company of believers that will do mighty exploits in this hour. If you
desire to be among these overcomers you must begin your spiritual preparation now, before
it is too late. The devil is deceiving and destroying people daily but the Lord desires
for us to overcome him.
Daniel 11:32: "And such as do
wickedly against the covenant shall he corrupt by flatteries: but the people that do know
their God shall be strong, and do exploits.
2 Timothy 1:7: "For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of
power, and of love, and of a sound mind."
- Pray: Spend time daily in prayer seeking God as to what you are to do
personally in the way of physical preparation. This could be in areas of moving to a
different locale or simply storing some extra food and emergency supplies. If you have no
money to make preparation, ask the Lord in faith to supply for you. He will make a way
when there is no way! Pray daily with your family and attend the prayer meetings at your
church. (If your church does not have prayer meetings you should consider seeking another
church or talking to your pastor about establishing one). Jesus said in Luke
19:46: "Saying unto them, It is written, My house is the house of prayer: but ye have
made it a den of thieves."
- Study the Bible: Turn off the T.V. and spend time studying the Word of
God. Christ Unlimited has Bible studies available
to help you grow in God. A systematic study of the Word will equip you with the
knowledge you need so that you can overcome the destruction facing us in the days ahead
and to be able to hear the voice of God. Hosea 4:6 says, "My
people are destroyed for lack of knowledge." The Lord will reveal many
things that you need to know about how to overcome. You can gain direction for your life,
principles to live by, and most of all, you will strengthen your faith in God. We will all
need faith to be able to prevail and help others in the future. Romans 10:17,
"So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God."
- Assemble with like Believers: As believers we need each other. There is
strength and protection as we stand together in unity. Strong relationships will be
important in the days ahead as we will need to help each other. The Bible also tells us we
should be submitted to church leadership as God equips His five fold ministry to lead the
church. Hebrews 10:25, "Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together,
as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the
- Reach out with the Gospel: As Christians we have been commissioned to
take the good news of the gospel to the whole world. We must reach out to our family,
friends, neighbors and others that have not heard and or need to be reminded of our Lord's
message to the lost and backslidden. We must share the gospel with those who will be
seeking answers as troubles multiply in the world. Mark 16:15: "And he said
unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that
believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned."
- Readjust Your Priorities: Seek God first and His righteousness. Place
the importance on the above things, plus work on establishing good relationships with your
family, friends, work mates and neighbors. Cut out worldly entertainment. It will take
both spiritual and physical readjustments if we are to be ready for the tribulation,
persecution and other judgements that the whole world faces at this time. These times are
predicted to happened just prior to the coming of the Lord.
Matthew 24:42-51: "Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord
43 But know this, that if the goodman of the house had known in what watch the thief would
come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up.
44 Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.
45 Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his lord hath made ruler over his
household, to give them meat in due season?
46 Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing.
47 Verily I say unto you, That he shall make him ruler over all his goods.
48 But and if that evil servant shall say in his heart, My lord delayeth his coming;
49 And shall begin to smite his fellowservants, and to eat and drink with the drunken;
50 The lord of that servant shall come in a day when he looketh not for him, and in an
hour that he is not aware of,
51 And shall cut him asunder, and appoint him his portion with the hypocrites: there shall
be weeping and gnashing of teeth."
Warnings are given so that we can take action and either prevent, prepare for, or flee
the danger or suffering that is sure to come without a change in the course of affairs.
Let us heed the warnings of the Bible and God's prophets so we will be able to
escape all of these things and stand before our Lord when He comes.
Luke 21:36: "Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be
accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before
the Son of man."
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