By Nathan Jones
What signs did Jesus give in Luke 21 that would declare His soon return?
In this "The Truth Will Set You Free" TWave Radio episode, Pastor Vic Batista and I will look at the seventh and eighth end times signs of great signs from the sky and the sign of Christian persecution prophesied by Jesus in Luke 21:11-19.
Avenues of Outreach
Vic Batista: We are going to talk about the signs of the end times as we look at Luke 21:11-19. We'll talk in particular about the end times sign of great signs from the sky and the sign of Christian persecution.
Before we get into that sign, I want to say that I really enjoyed the Lamb & Lion Ministries Bible prophecy conference where you gave a presentation on the end times sign of technology. You and I are two techno-geeks, right, Nathan, so we go hand in hand.
Nathan Jones: Yes, well, any new method to share the Gospel is important to use. I believe one of the greatest signs of the end times is the dramatic increase in technology. We can read in Daniel 12:4 how in the end times knowledge and travel will increase greatly, along with our ability to communicate. We live in a time period unlike anything ever experienced in human history. We can share the Gospel over the airways via TV, radio, podcast, cellphones, mobile devices — you name it. God has given us all these different avenues to share the Gospel. It's wonderful to be able to use them to reach people for Christ.
Vic Batista: I'm just as excited because I too believe that Jesus is coming back soon. And, since Jesus Christ is coming soon, be open to new avenues that reach people where they are at.
The Three Questions
Vic Batista: It's an incredible journey to read through Luke 21 and its parallel chapters Mark 13 and Matthew 24. Jesus was talking to us about the signs of the end times. Ten signs Jesus had been concentrating on explaining. Among those ten signs, Jesus tells us that there will be fearful signs in the sky. Please give us some info regarding the seventh of the ten signs — the signs in the skies. Then we'll jump into the eighth sign concerning Christian persecution.
Nathan Jones: In those chapters, Jesus was answering the questions that the Apostles had asked Him. The Apostles at the time had been looking at the Temple there in Jerusalem. It was the most magnificence building they'd ever seen. They were just gawking at it, but then Jesus announces, "This whole thing will be destroyed. Not one stone will be left upon another." The Apostles are like, "What?!?" They were so tongue-tied that it took them a travel across the valley from Jerusalem before they finally had the courage to ask Jesus what He meant.
The Apostles ended up asking Jesus three questions:
- When would the Temple fall?
- What would be the signs of the end of the age?
- What will be the sign of Jesus' coming?
First, we know from history that the Temple fell in 70 AD.
Second, we know that the terminology for the signs of the end of the age mark the end of the Church Age. That's the age we are living in right now. It will end when Jesus comes and raptures the Church up to Heaven.
Then third, the Apostles wanted to know what signs to be looking out for that mark Jesus' Second Coming. The Second Coming happens at the end of a seven year Tribulation period that will befall the whole earth.
When Jesus gave us the answer to these three questions, He gave us signs. He gave ten of them that cover each of these three questions. The chapters point out that the frequency and intensity of these signs increases the closer we get to each event. Signs are given to answer each of these three questions. The signs came more frequent and intense before the Temple fell in 70 AD. They are even more frequent and more intense before the end of this Church Age. And, by the time Jesus' comes at the Second Coming, the signs will be just screaming in people's ears every single day.
End Times Signs #1-6
Vic Batista: That's why as we look here at Luke 21 we can see so clearly what the Bible tells us regarding these signs. Luke 21:11 reveals, "And there will be great earthquakes in various places, and famines and pestilences; and there will be fearful sights and great signs from heaven."
Nathan Jones: To quickly re-cap the previous signs. Jesus gave ten signs, such as the first sign of the False Messiahs and False Christs who would be coming at the end of this age. There would be wars and rumors of wars, which is the second sign, that would also increase in frequency and intensity. The third sign concerns earthquakes in that how earthquakes would become more frequent and more intense and hit more powerfully as they came upon the earth.
The fourth sign concerns famine. Famines would be increasing in frequency and intensity, and especially during the Tribulation time period.
The fifth sign Jesus gave us was pestilence, which is plagues, diseases and sicknesses. Then there's the sixth sign which is fearful events both social and economic, and we certainly live in times like that.
In the second segment of our discussion on the end times signs in the sky and Christian persecution, Vic and I will delve into those signs seen in the sky due to weather.