Friday, February 26, 2010

Jones Interview: The Hope in Bible Prophecy

Nathan JonesPDFBy Nathan Jones

In December 2009 I was interviewed by Bill Salus, author of the popular Psalm 83-themed book Isralestine, host of the radio program "Prophecy Update," and evangelist on the end times website Prophecy Depot. Bill and I spent much of the interview discussing the Rapture, Middle East politics and my "left behind" video "Jesus Came. What's Next?"


Bill Salus

Bill has been kind enough to allow The Christ in Prophecy Journal to reproduce the "Caught Up in the Pre-Trib Rapture" interview in transcript form, edited into an article series. To listen to the original radio program in mp3 format, I invite you to visit Prophecy Depot or KWBB.

In this segment, Bill and I will be discussing what an awesome witnessing tool Bible prophecy is and how it gives us so much hope for a better tomorrow.


An Awesome Witnessing Tool

Bill Salus: Let's assume that a prophetic fulfillment of a Psalm 83 war where Israel subjugates their hostile surrounding neighbors and becomes a Greater Israel occurs and the Church is still here. How could that be a witnessing tool for Christians who understand that prophecy, seeing it play out before our very eyes on FOX and CNN and other news networks. Wouldn't that be a great witnessing tool?

Nathan Jones: I know, Bill, that Isralestine would certainly become a number one best seller!

Bill Salus: I tell my wife that I am not praying for a Middle East war. I just think one is coming.

Nathan Jones: Yes, you are only the reporter, exactly.

We have so many signs of the times occurring right now showing that Jesus is coming back really soon. We have an arsenal of signs of the times that prove that. And yet, many Christian are like, "What will be, will be." They are not paying attention. But, when we see things heat up in the Middle East and then can point to Psalm 83 or your book which explains well a Psalm 83 war, we can say, "Look, this is prophetically going to happen and we are in it right now." A fulfillment of Psalm 83 in our lifetime would be a major prophetic resource in which to open people's eyes to the Bible and to God's promises.

Bible prophecy is so wonderful because it gives us an urgency to want to share the Gospel. I think if people see Bible prophecy being fulfilled right before their eyes they will get excited. As a matter-of-fact, we certainly have Bible prophecy being fulfilled this very day with Israel coming back into the land and being regathered from all the nations, which is the beginning process for the last days (Isa. 11:11-12; 66:7-8; Ezek. 37:21-22; Zech. 8:4-8). Bible prophecy makes us excited that we are living in a time where God's will and God's promises are coming together and culminating.

The Rapture is yet another exciting part of God's plan because as nice as this Earth is, I am anxious to get to Heaven in my glorified body and begin whatever work God will have for me there. Maybe God will let me garden in peace, I don't know. I want to just be with our Lord, be with my Savior.

Bible prophecy being fulfilled means Jesus' return is close. It gives us an opportunity to live holier lives. We live in a time when we need to get serious about our Christianity. As a parent, there are times when I see that look occasionally when I come home or I go into one of my kids' rooms and find they aren't doing something they should. They look up real quickly and their faces show, "Oops, you caught me doing something I shouldn't be doing." I don't want God coming back and seeing me making that same face.

Bible prophecy not only makes a great witnessing tool, but it also revitalizes the Church and makes us more focused on the Lord.

Bill Salus: Urgency, very good, well said!


The Vehicle of Hope

Bill Salus: Let's conclude with some comfort. You mentioned earlier John 14 as one of the Rapture passages. It says, "Let not your heart be troubled." Is that correct? Is that something you believe connects with, "Don't let your heart be troubled. You believe in God, believe also in me." Jesus is saying this, "In my Father's house are many mansions, if were not so I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you I will come again and receive you to myself that where I am there you will may be also. And where I go you know and the way you know."

Nathan how does that connect? Is this what Jesus is doing now? Is He pounding some nails on mansions for Christians and then He is about to come get us and put us in our new homes?

Nathan Jones: God made the Creation in only six days and then He rested on the seventh. Since Jesus was resurrected, He has taken 2,000 years to build the New Jerusalem, so it must be beyond belief. I envy the Apostle John for being able to go see it early. When we talk about the magnitude and size of it - wow! I just read an article recently where the preacher goes into calculating the dimensions of how big this city actually is. And so, we know that we have a wondrous new place to live where Heaven and Earth will meet one day.

The best part about our future is that we get to be with our Savior — forever! This is the guy who died for us, the guy who loves us, the God who made us, and we get to spend an eternity with Him. We don't have to worry about crime and sin and death and sorrow anymore. We will have perfect relationships. I get to stop screwing up in my sin nature and be made whole and complete again. There is a lot to look forward to, and that gives us a lot of hope.

And, yes, there are some tough times coming on the world, like you said — wars in the Middle East, wars and rumors of wars. But, Jesus said in Matthew 24 that wars would proceed all of the wonderful things that will finally happen. But, at the end of it all, the glory that we will get to share in, and that we will be with God forever, well, that is well worth the suffering that we go through today.

Bill Salus: Speaking about the New Jerusalem, in Revelation 21 there is some description given. It says in Revelation 21:15, "It was measured with a reed and it was 12,000 furlongs in length, width and height and they are all equal." I had done some math on this once upon a time and those dimensions laid out would reach across American from San Diego in Southern California, all the way up to Seattle up the West Coast, stretched all the way from the South over toward the Houston area in Texas and equally and if you went square with it all the way up right up into Montana somewhere parallel to Seattle. We are talking about a pretty huge place!

We can also talk about how beautiful and spectacular the New Jerusalem will be. Of course, Jesus was a carpenter while on Earth. He was involved in the Creation.

Many folks in these tough economic times are losing your homes. You Christians, you need to keep you faith because Jesus is building you a new home and we will be there pretty soon. I know it is hard to not be victimized by the things you are going through in these tough times, but what Nathan and I are trying to tell you is to keep your faith in God. He is sticking to the blueprint, and the blueprint says He is coming to get us really soon.

And so, we need to be prepared. The hour of trial that is coming upon the Earth is coming soon. You can be fully equipped with your hope in Christ because at the end of 1 Thessalonians 4:18 concerning the Rapture the verse says, "Therefore comfort one another with these words."

Nathan Jones: Folks, Bible prophecy proves that the Bible is the truth. No prophecies by men are ever fulfilled, but in the Bible over 300 were fulfilled when Jesus came the first time and we have over 500 yet to be fulfilled by the Second Coming of Christ. We are in the middle of those two comings.

Not only did God create us and save us, but He wants us to live with Him forever, and He has done everything He could to accomplish that. So keep your eyes on the big picture. Keep your eyes on the end game when Jesus comes back and we live in a new world of peace, righteousness, and justice with the very God who made us, loves us and He gave up everything so that we can be with him. That means so much.

These times are indeed tough, and will continue to get tougher, so continue to pray, fellowship with other believers, and look for comfort among one another in the reading of the Bible. Just as Bill read, comfort and encourage each other with the knowledge that Jesus is coming back for us and He will deliver us to be with Him.

30 comments:

hartdawg said...

2,000 yrs is a long time to build mansions that we`re only gonna live in for 7-10yrs dont you think?

son of thunder said...

I don't think God's worried about the expense, hart :-)

Nathan Jones said...

Don't forget, the New Jerusalem comes to Earth for eternity (Rev. 21:1-4). It will be the center of the universe. Our forever home and our hub, so to speak.

hartdawg said...

i`m not thinking bout expense, i`m thinking about time. some speculate when the rapture occurs we reside in the new jerusalem and at the end of the miileneum it descends to the new earth. i just dont see God spending so much time on such a temporal dwelling place. any way you stinking slice it itll be great.

hartdawg said...

i dont know about you all but i plan to have homes scattered thru out the new earth (if God allows it) not just in new jerusalem. i`m exploring ALL of it

Nathan Jones said...

Just speculating...with an entire universe of planets out there, I'm hoping we go exploring in our glorified bodies (no need for spaceships).

As part of being co-heirs, we may get to be stewards over a planet or even system. Think of God making life teem on what is currently all those dormant planets out there. A true galactic kingdom!

Makes this time on Earth seem very confined and small, and all the more tragic for those who've rejected Christ's salvation..

hartdawg said...

speculation is good! i really love snow and the desert. it would be boring if all the new earth was only tropical "paradise" God knows his creation loves the beauty of various climates. is there any reason to believe the new earth wont have varying climates? or if not maybe other planets might? i sure hope so. i love a good snowstorm, or a hot dry summer day, or a night in the desert. better stop speculating now and come back to reality. sigh

son of thunder said...

Wouldn't that be something if the whole universe is our playground?

Billy said...

I used to try to imagine it but since it says no one possibly can I just finally gave up and am content to be surprised.

Expected Imminently said...

I told my 4 boys that their mansions MIGHT be like an Action Man assault course with a tree house and Tarzan vines. They liked that!
E.I.

Expected Imminently said...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bypLwI5AQvY&feature=player_embedded

Is the old British bulldog spirit reviving at last? The United Kingdom Independent Party's (UKIP) new leader Nigel Farage earns his spurs in the E.U. Parliament.

I am pleased to admit that I voted for him and he is living up to the ideal to cause as much havoc in the EU as is possible.

Please watch, you will either cheer with me or boo him for his uncompromising speech against the new EU President Herman Van Rompuy that no one was allowed to vote for and who some think is either the Antichrist or his forerunner?
EI

Expected Imminently said...

My dear old Mum had been watching the latest 'sign of the times' disaster quakes. With a troubled look on her face, she informed me that 'some island' was about to be hit by a Salami!
EI

hartdawg said...

i just mentioned on another site that i dont see how we can have more than 5, maybe 10yrs left at the most.

DrNofog said...

hartdawg said... "...i dont see how we can have more than 5, maybe 10yrs left at the most."

Yeah! It really does seem like it!... I've been doin' this every year after year since the early 70s, when I 1st starting paying attention..., the formation of the EU project..., China's Prez Mao boasts that he can field a 200 million man army [exact same # given in Rev.]..., Hal Lindsey's impact with "Late Great Planet Earth"..., Etc... Can't be "...more than 5, maybe 10yrs..."

But the Lord has so many tight twists & turns on this road that put the brakes on their plans, 'cuz:
"The Lord... ...is [soooo, sooo,] longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance." - 2 Peter 3:9
Amen!

DrNofog said...

EI Said...
"...about to be hit by a Salami!"

Ouch! Those Salamis can really send you reeling to the floor if you catch one upside the head, especially if they're the dryer, harder kind that we prefer... ;-D

hartdawg said...

dr.nofog
the statement i added is from time to time God pushes back the prophetic clock. having said that, this time i dont know. it seems unlikely he will but its as you said "the Lord is patient not willing that ant should parish..."

Laura said...

Hartdawg, I'm sure glad God is taking care of the "ants," too. I'd hate for all those fire ants to end up in hell; they might actually ENJOY it too much there! Better take them to heaven where we can make 'em miserable. (Yes, I'm poking fun at your typo--can you forgive me?)

Ever noticed how we seem to be shooting down the prophecy highway with prophetic events happening left, right, and center, and then suddenly God slams on the brakes and for about two months or so, we camp out at a roadside park where nothing much prophetic is going on at all? Yeah, God's in charge of this prophecy bus, and He's the only one that knows the prophecy road.

Might as well just revel in our relationships with Him NOW and enjoy the scenery, eh?

hartdawg said...

laura
its when God slams on the brakes when we need to be on high alert! i think its when no prophetic activity is going on and people fall asleep when the Lord comes for his church.

Expected Imminently said...

I have noticed this as well. Full throttle for a while then stop; however I don't think the engine is turned off. It reminds me of someone shaking anothers shoulders shouting 'wake up, I'm talking to you'. Dozy eyes focus for a while, then nod off again. Another shake and so on with the span between the shakings decreasing.

son of thunder said...

A salami?! Hmm. Maybe if it hits the Sandwich Islands....

Anyway, I don't think that the brakes are ever hit. Tapped, maybe, but never slammed. Even when it looks like nothin's going on, something is getting ready.

Expected Imminently said...

Salami sandwich! :D hehe wheeze!

Sounds like a deft use of the clutch using gear changes to decrease speed. Just one tap of the break could cause a nasty skid. Wonder what a hand brake turn would feel like? Polar shift maybe?
EI

Expected Imminently said...

Billy
Somewhere on the blog, you said of your concern for the rise in your gas prices, and I have at last remembered to ask my hubby what our fuel bills are.

Presently it is £1.01p per litre for unleaded petrol; and £1.10p per litre for diesel. Can’t work it out in gallons, but it’s around £5 per gallon.

I have a Fiat Punto - diesel. Hubby has a Nissan 350Z – unleaded. Two Fiat Punto Multijet vans – diesel and a Ford Flatbed –diesel. Now retired, one van and the flatbed will be sold but are presently used by sons. Then of course there is road tax and insurance on top.

We have just had our quarterly bill arrive for household gas (north sea) and electric which was £800 give or take, and that’s with being careful. How does that compare?

Decades ago my Nan used to say a loaf of bread would one day cost £1! She was right, but we passed that ceiling a while ago.

Side issue. Yes you are right, Posties do not have a crown for the blessed hope. Means Jesus will lose out when we ‘cast our crowns before him’ in honour and praise for all He has accomplished in our lives. I have never managed to turn a Postie and don’t expect to. I have rejoiced with Nathan that he did just that recently. My major concern is to try and protect those less knowledgeable of Scripture who may be infected by reading other views in the hope of redirecting them away from Postie, Mid and Wrath errors. God bless.
EI

son of thunder said...

EI, just so you'll know, you are paying $1.95 for 1 Liter of "petrol", which amounts to $9.65 per gallon.

Compare that to what I'm paying in my area at $2.62 (1 pound 53p for you) per gallon.

son of thunder said...

Sorry EI, but I don't have that cool "L" thing for pound on my keyboard.

DrNofog said...

son,
Hold down the Alt key and type 156 and when you let go the "£" symbol will show up...

DrNofog said...

If you're "down under" like in Australia or New Zealand, you can use ¿ for any questions you have.[168] ;-D

DrNofog said...

EI said...
"I have a Fiat, ...Two Fiat..."

Well that explains some of it! F.I.A.T. = Fix It Again Tony!

And you do hand brake turns too? - Yer a lot wilder than I would've thot!

Expected Imminently said...

DrNofog
Ifn ya means ‘Antonio Romero’ me Fiat has had a recall to change a nut! :D Seems the steering could be dodgy? Which brings me to the other subject - ya daft date, me, do handbrake turns – only in my dreams! It’s a theory I have nurtured in case Chicken Galore is waylaid by villains while collecting her pension, I may have to exit sharpish to out run em! Dodgy steering doing that caper could have put me in the ditch, don’t ya know!

Son of Thunder.
I gave hubby your breakdown figures on petrol costs; he was having coffee with his mate, and did that piece of news start a debate. Can’t report what was said, they were a mite too verbal to repeat – of course it is all the fault of the EU – what isn’t?

(When I was buying this laptop, I refused to have one with the euro sign on it)


P.S. Unknown to me he sold one of the vans a WEEK ago and replaced it with a Peugeot, an estate I think? He tells I nowt!

I am now going for a pm kip! I am so pooped from answering Mitchell’s declaration of there being no Scriptures to support a distinction between Israel and the Church! I HAD to pick up that gauntlet - - -. 

God bless
EI

hyong said...

Why are we talking about rapture theory when that is not written in the Bible. Read Lord's prayer, it says "Our Father who art in Heaven hollowed be thy name. [Thy Kingdom come on Earth as it is in Heaven....]. we are not going to new Earth. God created this Earth to be inhabited and God will dwell in Jerusalem when he returns to Earth on 7th Trump.

Nathan Jones said...

Hyong, the Rapture is certainly in the Bible in 1 Thes. 4 and other passages. Go back a few articles to The Elusive Rapture Word.