I just want a few moments of your time, and for you to use your imagination as you read. Really stop and picture what I'm describing for you. Get quiet. Put yourself in each scene, please.
There's a massive earthquake in California. It was The Big One. We all knew it was coming, but we grew accustomed to putting it out of our minds. We eased our concerns by storing 10 gallons of water in the garage and strapping our bookshelves to the walls, drawing comfort from those steps that might help a little in a 5.5, but won't mean a damn thing in a 9.0. Because you did "something" to prepare, you allowed yourself to be distracted by the "someday" nature of earthquakes and focused on your next cruise to some tropical destination instead of truly preparing for the massive quake.
Are you there? Can you hear your neighbors calling for someone, anyone, to help them out of the rubble? Are you thinking about how to get your kids from school, or how to reach your elderly mother? Let's fast forward a week or two.
The power is still out. People are looting, and breaking into homes looking for food, batteries, water...anything. Their children are hungry and let's face it - they love their children a lot more than they love you. Law enforcement is overwhelmed by calls and can't possibly manage the swelling tide of violence and crime.
Are you prepared? Can you get away from the city and, if so, do you have a place to go? Can you instead defend your home and loved ones if people are trying to come in every window, every door, at any time of the day or night? How long can you last?
Iran has finally lost it. They've decided a nuke is the only solution to the problem of the Infidels. Somehow, they've managed to get a nuclear device onto U.S. soil. Or Canadian soil. Or Mexican soil. You get the idea.
As the movie Red Dawn plays out before your very eyes, you struggle to comprehend war on American soil. How could this happen? Will people be killed? Put into camps? Starved out? Selectively bombed? Are you finally understanding why the Second Amendment was so important to preserve? Do you have food and water for your loved ones? Are you keeping lights turned off (if there's even power) so that your home isn't a target? How long can you last?
GLOBAL ECONOMIC RESET
It's a Thursday like any other. You get home from work and settle in for the night. You meant to get some cash from the ATM, but there's always tomorrow afternoon. You've heard rumblings about getting out of the stock market, but we've been through this before. Last time, it was the Covid economy. The time before that, it was the shoddy lending practices combined with an inflated housing market.
News flashes across your screen: the banks have closed early today. You dash off to the ATM to pull out some money, wishing your daily limit were higher than $500. But the ATM screen is as dead as a doornail. Nothing. It's as if someone pulled the plug. Your debit card doesn't work to get gas, so you scrape together a few bucks in change from the console. It reminds you of being in high school.
When you get home, you're glued to the news. All U.S. banks have shut down and won't be open until Monday. There's talk of a major financial catastrophe and every country to whom we're indebted is calling their loans, or else. After a hair raising weekend of seeing people walking around town, numb with shock, the banks re-open. Only you now have half of what you used to have. Your debit card now has tight limits on what can be spent per day.
A new card will be issued by the government with a global currency, instead of U.S. dollars. But you have to be vaccinated to get one. How can they take your money like that? How could this happen? Can you pay the bills this month? How about next month? How long can you last?
You went to bed and fell asleep quickly. It was a long day and that extra glass of wine while you watched TV made you feel so sleepy. But something startled you awake at midnight. It felt like an earthquake, but this is Indiana, not California. Your husband must have woken up, too. His side of the bed still feels warm. Why are his pajamas there in the bed?
Sighing, you get out of bed and wonder why Chief, the family dog, isn't following you as you walk into the kitchen. He's pretty enthusiastic about midnight snacks. Your husband isn't in the kitchen, or the bathroom. The dog is nowhere to be found. Feeling growing unease, you go down the hall to check on the kids. It feels silly. There must be a simple explanation. Maybe your hubby took the dog out to potty. But naked? That doesn't make sense.
Your hand reaches for your daughter's bedroom door, and you stop breathing. She's gone, too. Her pajamas are in some twisted Flat Stanley position, still warm. Choking back screams, you see the same in your son's room.
They're gone. Everyone is gone. You reach for your cell phone to call the police but can't get through on 9-1-1. It's busy. BUSY! At a time like this!
Others are outside, too. Some keening, some shouting the names of family members who also left their pajamas in their warm beds. Some staring at the sky.
You realize there are cars jammed against trees. A house has smoke coming from a window. A plane is screaming by overhead, much too close to the ground. Everything is wrong. Who can you call? How about that co-worker of yours who's been flirting with you for the last couple of months?
I mean, your marriage has been boring lately. Your husband spends his time reading the Bible and yammering about Jesus. You already believe in Jesus. He was a really nice guy and you're supposed to act like him, right? You were baptized as a baby, and you're a pretty nice person, so you know you're going to heaven. It's not like you actually got physical with that co-worker. There was one moment where you almost - almost - kissed. But you backed off in time and to be honest, the sexual tension between you felt nice. It wasn't hurting anyone.
You text him: Are you ok? What's going on? He replies that his wife is missing. She must have decided to leave him. She took the baby, but it looks like they left in a hurry.
What was your husband always talking about? The Rapture. People would disappear one day. You laughed at him. When you were growing up in the Catholic church, nobody spoke about the book of Revelation. In fact, nobody ever read the Bible in your family. You just attended classes and filled in blanks in a workbook.
And now you're alone, except for your friend, a man who flirted with you even though you both were married. He wants to know if you want to catch a drink tomorrow after work, now that he's apparently single. He has no idea what just happened. But you do. Your husband was right and he tried to warn you. And now you have seven years of the most unimaginable horror ahead of you. Should you just kill yourself and get it over with? Does that mean you go to hell?
You sink to the ground, sobbing in chorus with other neighbors on the street. Can you make it seven years? Can you even make it to tomorrow morning?
WHAT'S IT GOING TO TAKE TO ESCAPE THESE THINGS?
First, kudos to you for even asking that question. There is hopefully some part of you that realizes time is up. We're in Israel's 73rd year. Psalm 90 says this:
8 Thou hast set our iniquities before thee, our secret sins in the light of thy countenance. 9 For all our days pass away under thy wrath, our years come to an end like a sigh. 10 The years of our life are threescore and ten, or even by reason of strength fourscore; yet their span is but toil and trouble; they are soon gone, and we fly away. 11 Who considers the power of thy anger, and thy wrath according to the fear of thee? 12 So teach us to number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom.
Do the math. If a generation is between 70 years and 80 years, consider this from Luke, chapter 21:
25 "And there will be signs in sun and moon and stars, and upon the earth distress of nations in perplexity at the roaring of the sea and the waves, 26 men fainting with fear and with foreboding of what is coming on the world; for the powers of the heavens will be shaken. 27 And then they will see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. 28 Now when these things begin to take place, look up and raise your heads, because your redemption is drawing near." 29 And he told them a parable: "Look at the fig tree, and all the trees; 30 as soon as they come out in leaf, you see for yourselves and know that the summer is already near. 31 So also, when you see these things taking place, you know that the kingdom of God is near. 32 Truly, I say to you, this generation will not pass away till all has taken place. 33 Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away. 34 "But take heed to yourselves lest your hearts be weighed down with dissipation and drunkenness and cares of this life, and that day come upon you suddenly like a snare;35 for it will come upon all who dwell upon the face of the whole earth. 36 But watch at all times, praying that you may have strength to escape all these things that will take place, and to stand before the Son of man."
The fig tree is symbolic of Israel and this generation started in 1948 when they got back their lands. If we're in the 73rd year now, and Tribulation is seven years there's very little time left before it starts. You can no longer maintain the "someday" attitude. Just like furniture straps didn't prepare you for the earthquake, dropping into church on Easter and Christmas won't prepare you for the Tribulation. Do you want my advice?
Avoid it. Get right with God RIGHT NOW.
Stop living with your boyfriend. You're not married and you know exactly what the Bible calls it: fornication. Even if you go to church together on Sunday.
Stop looking at porn. It doesn't matter that you're not actually touching someone. You are behaving immorally.
Stop putting all your heart into making money. No bank balance is going to last when Tribulation starts. Hedging your bets with gold and silver? That's not going to be of any use to you if there's nothing to buy with it.
Are you homosexual? It's a sin. Look it up. The Bible is clear, and it's absolutely God's word. I'm not judging you, truly. I have no right to judge ad the Bible is also clear about not doing that. I love my gay friends dearly. But I'm also afraid for them.
Are you proudly fighting for abortions? Stop. It's murder. Look it up.
Take a look at this in 1 Corinthians 6:
9 Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither the immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor sexual perverts, 10 nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor robbers will inherit the kingdom of God.
There are a lot of "do nots" to consider. There are also some "dos" that you need to think about.
Read the Book of Revelation. It's playing out in front of your eyes. If you need help understanding it, ask someone.
Follow God's commandments. Don't do it because you think you're going to earn Heaven. You can't. Only faith in Jesus Christ, the son of God, as our Savior is going to get you there.
Repent. Turn away from the things in this world that you know are NOT of God. Hatred, racism, lust, drunkenness, envy, drugs, cruelty, greed, unforgiveness... Turn your backs on these things and don't allow them back into your life because they can be very, very sneaky. When we sin, there's that part of us that wants to hide from God. Adam and Eve did it. We do it, too. You know the feeling I'm talking about.
Please, if you've gotten this far, listen just a few lines mores. Stop flirting with sin right now. You're rolling the dice in a game that you WILL NOT WIN. Stop thinking "someday" and start living like it is "today." It's coming and when it does, it will be sudden.
There. That's all I have to say. Listen once more to what Jesus says in the book of Luke, Chapter 21.
36 But watch at all times, praying that you may have strength to escape all these things that will take place, and to stand before the Son of man."
His words. Not mine. This isn't a game, and it isn't a joke.
Ezekiel 33: 2-6
2 "Son of man, speak to your people and say to them, If I bring the sword upon a land, and the people of the land take a man from among them, and make him their watchman; 3 and if he sees the sword coming upon the land and blows the trumpet and warns the people; 4 then if any one who hears the sound of the trumpet does not take warning, and the sword comes and takes him away, his blood shall be upon his own head. 5 He heard the sound of the trumpet, and did not take warning; his blood shall be upon himself. But if he had taken warning, he would have saved his life. 6 But if the watchman sees the sword coming and does not blow the trumpet, so that the people are not warned, and the sword comes, and takes any one of them; that man is taken away in his iniquity, but his blood I will require at the watchman's hand.
If you don't listen, it's on you.