Mar 6, 2009

Jesus is Returning in Our Time: Revelation Signs 4-5

PDFBy Dr. David R. Reagan

Many examples of modern day signs that Jesus is returning in our time can be found in the book of Revelation. Seven of the many signs will be covered, the following are the next two.

4) The Nation of Israel

Revelation 12 focuses on the nation of Israel. It makes clear that in the middle of the Tribulation Satan will motivate and empower the Antichrist to annihilate the Jewish state and its people. A remnant of the Jews will flee into the "wilderness" where they will be supernaturally protected by the Lord (Revelation 12:14).

At the time the book of Revelation was written, Jerusalem had already been destroyed by the Romans and the worldwide distribution of the Jews had begun. Until the 20th Century, there was never any prospect that the nation of Israel would ever exist again. There were, of course, prophetic scholars who pointed to the many promises in Scripture that say the Jews will be regathered in the end times and the nation of Israel will be reestablished once more. But people laughed at these scholars and wrote them off as "dreamers" who were out of touch with reality.

Then, on May 14, 1948 the "dream" came true. The independence of the nation of Israel was proclaimed, and the Jewish state came back into existence for the first time in almost 2,000 years.

All the end time prophecies of the Hebrew Scriptures make it clear that the Lord will return when the Jews are back in the land (Ezekiel 37) and back in their capital city of Jerusalem (Zechariah 12). Jesus emphasized these two events in His teaching. He pointed to the reestablishment of the state in his fig tree parable (Matthew 24:32-35), and He stressed the importance of the reoccupation of Jerusalem in His Olivet Discourse (Luke 21:24). He stated point blank that when Jerusalem is no longer under Gentile control, all the end time events would take place. Jerusalem ceased to be under Gentile control on June 7, 1967.

The central piece of the end time world political puzzle is now in place for the first time.

5) The Image of the Beast

Revelation 13 says that the Antichrist's religious leader, the False Prophet, will make an image of the Antichrist that will appear to come alive and speak. This trickery will amaze most of the world's population and will cause many of them to give their allegiance to the Antichrist.

What is the explanation of this event? Many have concluded that Satan will empower the False Prophet to give the image life. But Satan does not have the power to create life. Satan is a liar and a deceiver.

So, again, how can the False Prophet give an image life? I don't see any way for him to do it apart from modern technology. The illusion can be created in several ways through the use of modern robotics or holograms.

In 1967 I took my family to Disneyland. We went into a theater where we saw a man who looked exactly like Abraham Lincoln get up out of his chair in stage center, walk to the edge of the stage, grab the lapels of his jacket, and proceed to quote the Gettysburg Address. When he finished, a lady behind me exclaimed, "Wasn't he a good actor!" He was not an actor. The "actor" was a robot.

That was forty years ago. Think what could be done today with the advances that have been made in robotics and computer technology.

A couple of years ago the Dallas Morning News reported that the governor of Texas had "appeared" at a technology conference being held at the University of Texas at Dallas. Actually, the governor's appearance consisted of a three dimensional hologram that was projected from his office in Austin, Texas!

I recently shared this hologram story at a Bible prophecy conference. When we opened up the session to questions, a man in the audience made the point that the hologram technology was nothing new. When I asked what he meant, he replied, "They've been doing that for years on Star Trek. Haven't you ever seen them stand on a special platform and say, 'Beam me up, Scotty'?"

The next article will continue to look at more examples of modern day signs that Jesus is returning in our time from the book of Revelation.