Light for the Last Days

Religion and the world – Truth and Falsehoods

SHORT TALK

“Then the kingdom of heaven shall be likened to ten virgins who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. Now five of them were wise, and five were foolish. Those who were foolish took their lamps and took no oil with them, but the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps. But while the bridegroom was delayed, they all slumbered and slept.

“And at midnight a cry was heard: ‘Behold, the bridegroom is coming; go out to meet him!’ Then all those virgins arose and trimmed their lamps. And the foolish said to the wise, ‘Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.’

Matthew 25.1-8

Interestingly, the Pope wrote in 2015 that

‘International negotiations cannot make progress due to positions taken by countries which place their national interests above the common good’.

Pope Francis

He called for the leaders of the world to set up, and I quote

“Global Regulatory Norms to impose obligations and prevent unacceptable actions. There’s an urgent need for a true political world authority or an authoritative voice of oversight which lays down rules for admissible conduct in the light of common good”.

Laudato Si Action Platform

I think that’s on its way, that’s why it’s not going to make much difference if you vote labour, liberal, or conservative in the next election, because they’re all actually under the same programme, which is bad news.

It also means that Jesus is coming. So, the only answer to this is to get ready to meet with Jesus. I would like to be able to stop all this and we should resist it as far as we can, but one has to acknowledge that there are bigger powers than us who are behind all of this.

Nevertheless, we have a bigger power on our side who is Jesus Christ. And according to the Bible, as I said earlier on, eventually, this whole system is going to crash down and be destroyed.

Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world. By this you know the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is of God, and every spirit that does not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is not of God. And this is the spirit of the Antichrist, which you have heard was coming, and is now already in the world.

You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world. They are of the world. Therefore they speak as of the world, and the world hears them. We are of God. He who knows God hears us; he who is not of God does not hear us. By this we know the spirit of truth and the spirit of error.

1 John 4.1-6

The Bible describes this system as becoming ‘a habitation of demons’, and you see that, behind it, there is a demonic program which involves both east and west. Note that all those countries in the BRICS alliance have become increasingly anti-Christian and persecute Christians.

Recently, we’re seeing in the western part of the world a growing opposition to Christianity, including India in the east by the way. In India a country we thought of as a democratic and pluralistic, Christians are being persecuted in an big way by the Hindus, and the government is doing nothing to stop it.

China, of course, is well into the persecution of Christians, and Russia is also suppressing real Christianity. And we’re seeing in the west a growing anti-Christian movement.

So, what do we do? We panic and give up? No, we

look up and lift up your heads, because our redemption draws near (Luke 21.28)

We look to Jesus who is coming back. Praise the Lord!

There is a hope in the intervention of God in the second coming of Jesus as I said at the beginning. There is something going to happen in our world which will be so ‘out of this world’ that it will be almost unbelievable.

But it is believable because it is there, written in the Word of God. Jesus Christ comes back, this time not as the suffering servant to suffer and to die, but coming as King of kings and Lord of lords to sort out the mess which humans have made of the world he gave us to look after.

Matthew 16.27

Matthew 26.64

Revelation 1.7
Matthew 25.31

And He gave us a parable which tells us to be ready for his return. That is the parable of the wise and the foolish virgins:

“Then the kingdom of heaven shall be likened to ten virgins who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. Now five of them were wise, and five were foolish. Those who were foolish took their lamps and took no oil with them, but the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps. But while the bridegroom was delayed, they all slumbered and slept.

“And at midnight a cry was heard: ‘Behold, the bridegroom is coming; go out to meet him!’ Then all those virgins arose and trimmed their lamps. And the foolish said to the wise, ‘Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.’ But the wise answered, saying, ‘No, lest there should not be enough for us and you; but go rather to those who sell, and buy for yourselves.’ 10 And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the wedding; and the door was shut.

11 “Afterward the other virgins came also, saying, ‘Lord, Lord, open to us!’ 12 But he answered and said, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, I do not know you.’

13 “Watch therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour in which the Son of Man is coming.

Matthew 25.1-13

The bridegroom is coming. That is Jesus. The bride is the believing church. And we are told to be ready for His coming at any time.

I think the “any time coming” does advise us as to a pre-Tribulation rapture because if it is before the rapture Jesus could come at any time. If it is before the Tribulation, Jesus can come at any time. If He comes at the end of the Tribulation period, then certain events have to happen and He could not come at “any time”.

We will see what happens with that. Whatever it is, the Bible says that the wise virgins have oil in their lamps and that the unwise have no oil.

Oil, of course, is a representation of the Holy Spirit. So, the wise virgins have the Holy Spirit in their lives, they are born again of the Spirit, filled with the Holy Spirit.

16 So He came to Nazareth, where He had been brought up. And as His custom was, He went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and stood up to read. 17 And He was handed the book of the prophet Isaiah. And when He had opened the book, He found the place where it was written:

18 “The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me,
Because He has anointed Me
To preach the gospel to the poor;
He has sent Me to heal the broken-hearted,
To proclaim liberty to the captives
And recovery of sight to the blind,
To set at liberty those who are oppressed;
19 To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord.”

20 Then He closed the book, and gave it back to the attendant and sat down. And the eyes of all who were in the synagogue were fixed on Him. 21 And He began to say to them, “Today this Scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.” 22 So all bore witness to Him, and marvelled at the gracious words which proceeded out of His mouth. And they said, “Is this not Joseph’s son?”

Luke 4.16-22

No oil means no Holy Spirit and that represents either nominal Christians or unbelievers. Whoever they are, they’re not ready and the Lord will know who to take and who to leave by the presence of the Holy Spirit in the lives of His people.

May the Lord answer you in the day of trouble;
May the name of the God of Jacob defend you;
May He send you help from the sanctuary,
And strengthen you out of Zion;
May He remember all your offerings,
And accept your burnt sacrifice. Selah

May He grant you according to your heart’s desire,
And fulfil all your purpose.
We will rejoice in your salvation,
And in the name of our God we will set up our banners!
May the Lord fulfill all your petitions.

Now I know that the Lord saves His anointed;
He will answer him from His holy heaven
With the saving strength of His right hand.

Some trust in chariots, and some in horses;
But we will remember the name of the Lord our God.
They have bowed down and fallen;
But we have risen and stand upright.

Save, Lord!
May the King answer us when we call.

Psalm 20

It says in the parable that His coming will be unexpected. When the cry comes at midnight the wise are already prepared for Him to come at any time, even when physically asleep, they are ready.

Now, interestingly, the wise have the oil and the unwise do not have the oil, and the unwise come to the wise and ask them to give them some oil, but the wise cannot sell their oil to the foolish.

They tell the unwise virgins that the oil can only be bought from the One who dispenses it, that is God. So, as believers, we have the Holy Spirit, but we cannot give the Holy Spirit to somebody else, they have to ask for It themselves.

There was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews. This man came to Jesus by night and said to Him, “Rabbi, we know that You are a teacher come from God; for no one can do these signs that You do unless God is with him.”

Jesus answered and said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born γεννηθῇ [gennēthē] again ἄνωθεν [anōthen], he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

Nicodemus said to Him, “How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born?”

Jesus answered, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’ The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear the sound of it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes. So is everyone who is born of the Spirit.”

Nicodemus answered and said to Him, “How can these things be?”

10 Jesus answered and said to him, … 13 No one has ascended to heaven but He who came down from heaven, that is, the Son of Man who is in heaven. 14 And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up, 15 that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life. 16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. 17 For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.

18 “He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. 19 And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. 20 For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed. 21 But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done in God.”

John 3.1-21

What we can do is tell people how to find the Holy Spirit, and how to be filled with the Holy Spirit through repentance and faith in Jesus, and tell people to be asking to fill their lives with the Holy Spirit. But we cannot do the job ourselves. Only God can do it.

That is the point of this story. Believers cannot give the Holy Spirit to unbelievers. Only the One who dispenses it can. That is the Lord Himself; He gives the Holy Spirit to all who call upon Him for salvation. Which means that the major provision for being ready to meet the Lord is to receive the Holy Spirit and to be born again of the Holy Spirit by believing in Jesus.

I hope all of you are. If you are not, now is the day of salvation. Call on the Name of the Lord and receive Him as your personal saviour.

All this does connect to the passage which we read at the beginning where it says:

40 Then two men will be in the field: one will be taken and the other left. 41 Two women will be grinding at the mill: one will be taken and the other left. 42 Watch therefore, for you do not know what hour your Lord is coming. 43 But know this, that if the master of the house had known what hour the thief would come, he would have watched and not allowed his house to be broken into. 44 Therefore you also be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.

Matthew 24.36-44

One taken παραλαμβάνεται [paralambanetai], one left ἀφίεται [aphietai]. Be ready!

The one taken are those who are taken to be with the Lord at the time of the rapture of the church when Jesus comes fulfilment of the scripture 1 Thessalonians 4 and other passages.

13 But I do not want you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning those who have fallen asleep, lest you sorrow as others who have no hope. 14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so God will bring with Him those who sleep in Jesus.

15 For this we say to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord will by no means precede those who are asleep. 16 For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord. 18 Therefore comfort one another with these words.

1 Thessalonians 4.13-18

I would say the ones who are most likely to be ready are those who are watching and waiting for the Lord’s return, and who are aware of the signs. Because they know that when you see these things beginning to happen, Jesus is coming.

That is why I give you some of the signs, so that you can recognize that these things happening are not just accidents. They are preparations for the coming of the Lord.

10 Signs of the Second Coming of Jesus Christ

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What we should do then is to respond by accepting Jesus. These signs are also signs of the coming of the Antichrist. These things happening are preparing the way for the coming of the Antichrist with a false solution to the problems of the world.

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The people of the world who reject Jesus are going to accept the Antichrist.

This is what is said in 2 Thessalonians chapter 2:

Now, brethren, concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our gathering together to Him, we ask you, not to be soon shaken in mind or troubled, either by spirit or by word or by letter, as if from us, as though the day of Christ had come. Let no one deceive you by any means; for that Day will not come unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition, who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped, so that he sits as God in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God.

2 Thessalonians 2.1-4

Therefore, it is very important that you accept Jesus and believe in Him because, when the Antichrist comes, he is going to come with a strong delusion which will cause people to believe the lie because they refuse to repent.

That is why we must respond now by accepting Jesus as Saviour.

So, turn to Jesus Christ, believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and you shall be saved.

I have to say that much of the church today is not doing so, and is even being deceived. Part of it is being deceived by the spirit of antichrist and will end up as foolish virgins, with no oil in their lamps. And when Jesus comes, they will be shut out.

I don’t want that to happen to anybody listening to me, so make sure that you are ready and, when Jesus comes, He will open the door and say ‘Come in, come into the feast and be with Me forever and ever’. That is what I’m looking forward to.

And I heard, as it were, the voice of a great multitude, as the sound of many waters and as the sound of mighty thunderings, saying, “Alleluia! For the Lord God Omnipotent reigns! Let us be glad and rejoice and give Him glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His wife has made herself ready.” And to her it was granted to be arrayed in fine linen, clean and bright, for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints.

Then he said to me, “Write: ‘Blessed are those who are called to the marriage supper of the Lamb!’ ” And he said to me, “These are the true sayings of God.” 10 And I fell at his feet to worship him. But he said to me, “See that you do not do that! I am your fellow servant, and of your brethren who have the testimony of Jesus. Worship God! For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.”

Revelation 19.6-10

It will be great! And whatever bad stuff is happening down here will just pale into insignificance when we get to be with the Lord. We will even forget all about it, and we will have a glorious future which will go on forever and ever.

First, I think we will be part of the time when Jesus rules on the earth and puts right all the problems which Babylon has created. He will then wrap up the present world and create a new heavens and a new earth in righteousness in which we will be with Him forever and ever.

So, when you see these things beginning to happen, do not panic. Look up, lift up your heads because your redemption draws near. Jesus is coming, amen.

Let us just have a word of prayer:

Lord we thank you for the promises and your Word. May each one of us be ready for your return by committing our vives to Jesus, so we see the signs. We do not know how long we have, but we know that the signs are pointing us to the end times and the return of Jesus.

We pray Lord, for all the people who are under tyrannical regimes, persecuted Christians, those who are suffering because of wars and famines and all the disasters which are happening in the world. We pray also that you will snatch them out of the fire, and save souls in these last days.

We pray in Jesus name and for His praise and glory, amen. Amen, praise the Lord!

Tony Pearce

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