Friday, September 18, 2009

What Could It Be?

Nathan JonesPDFBy Nathan Jones

You can feel it in the air. Even those who couldn't possibly quote John 3:16 apprehensively feel that something big is coming around the next corner. Hollywood has been banking on the tension with movies like "Knowing" and "2012." An endless parade of books and commentaries by pundits all engaging in end time speculation have filled the Barnes & Noble shelves and dominated the mainstream media outlets. Like that ominous calm before the storm, people are scanning the horizon looking for that, that... whatever. What could it be?

Eric BargerFor an answer to that question, we'll go to Eric Barger, the founder and director of Take a Stand! Ministries. Eric is an authority on the cults, the New Age, and rock music today. From his past as a former drug addict and rock n' roll musician who was deeply involved in the New Age movement, Eric has emerged since he gave his life to Jesus Christ to become one of today's greatest defenders of Christianity in America.

Do you believe we're in the season of the Lord's return, and if so, why?

I believe I could be living at the time that He'll return. I hope if I am 99 behind a pulpit on a Sunday night and the last thing I preach about is the Rapture and the Coming of the Lord. But, that's where I believe we're at now.

My expertise in dealing with cults and the occult leads me to believe that the occult and supernaturalism is on the rise. The craving for supernaturalism I think it is one of the most important sign that we may be living in the season of the Lord's Return, that and the great apostacia — the apostasy — that we see around us.

Another sign of the soon return of Jesus is Israel becoming a state again.

We have so many things that have happened that we see the signs of the times. Jesus told us we wouldn't know the day or the hour, but we'll know the times when we are in them.

Of extreme importance is Matthew 24, when Jesus gives us a long series of signs we are to be looking for. The very first one He mentions is false Christ's and false prophets, the only one He repeats two more times, even saying some of these will even do major signs to deceive people. We've just had a literal explosion of this in both America and on the world scene. America is hooked on the supernatural like the rest of the world is, but not on God's supernatural. I believe that has helped prepare the way for the Antichrist because people will be craving spiritual things that of course don't lead them to God.

A recent false prophet out of Puerto Rico who is now in south Florida is Jesús Miranda. He is claiming to be Jesus Christ in the flesh. And just like that, he's got 60 churches in the United States and people giving him everything they've got and kissing his hand and all, and he's claiming to be Jesus Christ.

It is amazing what's happening and it is happening right before our eyes. But, we should not despair. We see all these things and we have the tendency to want to run for the hills and hide for cover. Instead, tell your lost friends about Jesus. Tell people about the Lord. Don't despair in this hour. This is a great hour for the Church if we'll stand up and take advantage of it.

I want to live my life as if He is coming back in any moment, but yet plan my life as if I am going to live until I am 100. So, I want to plan my life out, but I believe Jesus could return at any time. I think as we see these signs take place the Scripture says in Luke 21:28, "When these things begin to take place, stand up and lift up your heads, because your redemption is drawing near."


hartdawg said...

personally, i believe if the church would once again start practicing the gifts(toungues, interpretations, words of knowledge, gifts of healing...)and start preaching on the supernatural people wont go to phsycics, mediums and such cuz they`ll experience the true power of God rather then counterfiets and lying wonders.

hartdawg said...

by the way, there is a big difference between preaching on them and allowing them in the service.

hartdawg said...

Oh! if it seems that during this series of blogs with eric that i`m putting alot of the blame on the church its cuz i am. instead of preaching acceptance its preaching tolorance, liscense instead of forgiveness. instead of equiping the saints its babytalking them. they would rather one feel comfortable rather than repentant. people who go into bars are looking for jesus and if the church would teach prophecy alot of these physicic hotlines would go outta business

hartdawg said...

and it doesnt say "i charge you. .in the prescence of God who will judge the living and dead to do a demographic data and minister to the `felt needs`of the people" it says PREACH THE WORD. instead the church baby talks the people and rather than feeling convicted they feel "uplifted"

son of thunder said...

Hartdawg, two things: 1) You need to cut back on the caffeine, and 2) I'm with you all the way. I know exactly what you're saying and I agree.

The Christian Soldiers of yesterday are history. At one time we didn't CARE if we offended somebody. That was called conviction. That was the Holy Spirit grabbing hold of somebody and giving them a shake.

Jesus didn't care if He offended people. We've all seen those WWJD wristbands. What would He do? He went toe to toe with the religious leaders of His day. He whooped hieney in the Temple. He called sin SIN!!!

He preached the Gospel. As did the Apostles. On the day the church was born 3,000 were saved. 3,000! In one day! And they did that without any programs.

davidsoncounty said...

Thank you for your article. I agree with it and pray Maranatha! May the LORD shine His face upon the Bride!

Donald Dolmus said...

"He which testifieth these things saith, Surely I come quickly. Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus."

God bless you all for your hard effort in warning people about the soon return of the Lord Jesus Christ.

May His Peace be upon you.


Donald Dolmus said...

You are welcome to visit En Defensa de la Fe.

A big hug from Managua, capital city of Nicaragua.

hartdawg said...

yo thunder, speaking of caffiene might i recomend a bull coctail. thats 3redbulls mixed with a 5hr energy shot.

Paul M said...

Gee hartdawg, I recommend highly Kevin Reeve's book "The other side of the River". He was involved in a Church and movements that practiced all you suggested in your first post. And More! I have long had questions about what I experienced in my several years in a Pentecostal environment. It was a great relief when I finally separated from that denomination.

My fear is that the signs and wonders seekers are being deceived and may well be falling prey to deceiving spirits whose purpose is to lead them into the New Age.

As for me, I have come to the conclusion that the "Charismatic" experiences did end with the apostles and the completion of the Bible. I think everything God desires to reveal to us is contained in the Bible and the study of the Word is where God reveals himself in this age.

Sorry if I offended.

son of thunder said...

3 Red Bulls and a 5 Hour Energy shot?!?! Do you ever sleep, hart?

hartdawg said...

1st off, a disagreement is NOT an offense so i`m not offended 2nd you should never apologize for speaking ur convictions 3rd if the gifts and whats spoken dont match with the word of God it aint valid. 4th abuse of the gifts do in fact lead to sensationism and even deception so its the pastors responsibility to call the person out on it. also God speaks primarily thru his word but uses people to.

hartdawg said...

also peter quoted joel speaking "in the last days. . ." but you can disagree (i`ll pray for ur salvation;)and i rarely sleep. work graves.

son of thunder said...

A word of advice, hartdawg, too much caffeine can cause kidney stones, and those you don't want.

And, Paul M., you can say what you want about the gifts of the Spirit being non-existent after the 1st century, but let me say this: My pastor's daughter, who was born 3 months pre-mature and is given to illness, had pneumonia one Sunday morning. Her mother, his wife, had her in the hospital. We prayed for a healing that morning at about 11 AM. We had him call his wife to find out how the baby was doing. Long story short, the pneumonia was gone.

To me, that is a 1st century miracle if ever I've seen one.

Collards said...

Sensationalism has been in the church since acts (Simon). The early church had the montanist movement, the Middle Ages its mystics with later days having hyper Pentecostalism and hyper exposure ministries.

Everybody likes excitement. Everybody likes something out of the ordinary. It gives some comfort in life. I agree with Hartdawg to a point. If the people were walking in the Spiritual gifts, they would be satisfied.

The reason for that is too honestly flow in the gifts, for the most part; one needs a legitimate personal walk with Jesus through the Spirit. I know that there has been many with counter signs and wonders, but nothing compares with an up to date relationship with the Living Lord and Messiah. That is all the contentment and excitement one needs. The walk with Him and the expectance of His return. Seek and preach on Jesus. The peace that satisfies every need. Nothing is greater than His love.

In this season of the blowing (Yom Teruah), I wish the peace of Christ on you as we harvest in the expectation of His soon return.

hartdawg said...

sadly, collards one reason why some churches pulled away from the gifts is "hyper sensationalism" people take legitimate gifts and abuse them and get crazy which makes the church look like nuts. is people seeking a spiritual high so some churches do away with them. they`ll teach them but not allow them. the abuse does not make them any less valid

hartdawg said...

getting back to my original intention for bring all this up is the church needs to encounter deciet with truth. the counterfiet with the authentic, comfortable with conviction. when they start doing that and quit with the positive thinking seeker sensitive bull and start teaching Gods word chapter by chapter and verse by verse alot of this deception and new age that eric so correctly defines and fights would lose it power.

son of thunder said...

Hart, you couldn't be more right.

Collards said...


That is why years ago, I spent less time on sensationalim and learned a lesson from Pastor Chuck Smith.

Line on line teaching. Yes it is okay to learn all the tactics of the enemy, but many people only know that or speak it with token lip service to the gospel.

The lack of studying of God's word is evident. Look at how few quote it or apply it to issues. So, a teaching of the word is the way to go for me. When teaching, you can expose false ideas when the passage presents itself. The people will be informed. 2Pe 1:19 We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts.

But the making yourself out to be an expert and majoring on your vast knowledge is pride (love of your life) and just as bad as any doctrinal error. I see that alot. We overcome by

Rev 12:11 And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death.

here is what I think the bible says our testimony is or what it should be. Not our past sinalog or our vast knowledge, but

Rev 1:2 Who bare record of the word of God, and of the testimony of Jesus Christ, and of all things that he saw

Rev 1:9 I John, who also am your brother, and companion in tribulation, and in the kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ, was in the isle that is called Patmos, for the word of God, and for the testimony of Jesus Christ.

rev 12:17 And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ
Rev 19:10 And I fell at his feet to worship him. And he said unto me, See thou do it not: I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren that have the testimony of Jesus: worship God: for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.

The testimony of Jesus. It speaks for itself. Why settle for man's pride. It always leads to error.

We have the gospel 2 cor 4:6 For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

What can even compare. It is what everybody needs

The knowledge of the word.

hartdawg said...

collards, i think i`lm in agreement here, line upon line. i dont like to get hung up on methods since i heard many wonderful messages on topical series. they call it a "right now word" but for me i prefer chapter by chapter verse by verse cuz you go deeper into the word.

Paul M said...

It's too late to pray for my salvation that is a done deal, Thanks to Jesus. I don't deny the Holy Spirit's sovregnity in all things. I agree the gifts are given and as He desires. Glad you were not offended anyway.