If anyone wanted to point to signs of Christ’s return, the last two weeks have been a prophecy student’s dream.
1. Worldwide pandemic.
2. Earthquakes in Utah, Tennessee, Nevada, and the Carolinas.
3. World economies on the verge of collapse.
4. Locust swarms in Africa.
5. A world toilet paper shortage.
Okay, the Bible does not say anything about number five. Still, those without toilet tissue probably believe they are in the middle of the apocalypse.
There are many events the Bible says are signs of His coming.
One fulfilled in 1948 and continues today is the restoration of the nation of Israel, and the Jews return to the land.
Israel becoming a nation again is significant because Jesus uses that event and the retaking of Jerusalem, as the events that begin the countdown to His return.
Matthew 24:32-34, “Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh: So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors. Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.”
Scripture uses the fig tree as a symbolic picture of Israel. Jesus is talking about when the “fig tree” or Israel’s branch is yet tender and brings forth leaves. I believe the branch being tender is the springing forth a new fig tree sapling; in other words, Israel comes to life as a new nation. It takes a little time from seeing the tree break earth until we can see leaves. The “putteth forth leaves” is symbolic of when Israel took control of the Holy City Jerusalem in 1967.
We cannot set dates but, “This generation shall not, till all these things be fulfilled.” There will be people living at the second coming who were alive in 1967.
Pay attention to Israel and Jerusalem; they are the largest of all the signs.
Wars and rumors of wars are another sign of Jesus’ return, but even warless violence has increased.
The New Testament tells us the days before Christ’s return will be like the days of Noah (Matthew 24:37; Luke 17:36). The reason God told Noah He was sending the flood was, “for the earth is filled with violence” (Genesis 6:13). In 2018 there were 16,214 reported murders in the United States; that is 44 a day; 1.8 every hour. Violence fills the earth.
Economic Turmoil is another Biblical sign of the second coming. Most are aware of “the mark” that Antichrist will require people to have to buy and sell. Most Bible scholars believe this mark will become necessary because of the mess the world will be in because of the first half of the Tribulation Period. This belief is more than likely accurate. However, James 5:1-8 informs us that more people will have access to pleasure and luxury items in “the last days.” The poor will always be with us (Matthew 26:11; Mark 14:7; John 12:8). However, a higher percentage of the poor, even those fighting for survival, have access to cell phones, televisions, computers, and the like. The poor, all around the globe, look a lot different today than the poor of a few decades ago.
One glaring Biblical sign of the end is the increase in knowledge, but the lack of wisdom and understanding.
Daniel 12:4, “But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased.”
The internet may be humanity’s greatest invention. The knowledge that only a few years ago that would require hours of study now only takes a matter of seconds. With all this increased knowledge, however, comes a lack of understanding. The people of the world may know a lot, but how to put that knowledge to use correctly will be something rare (Daniel 12:10).
Moral decay is another significant sign of the last days. The Bible explains we will see the manifestation of the practice of right and wrong in the following ways.
1. Another “as it was in the days of Noah” will be the mass marrying of Christians to non-Christians (Genesis 6:1-4).
2. Normalization of sexual deviancy (Romans 1:24-27).
3. Sin and lawlessness become the norm (Romans 1:28-32; Matthew 24:12; 2 Timothy 3:1-7).
4. An increase of false Christ and the growth of apostasy (Matthew 24:4-5; 2 Thessalonians 2:3)
5. An increase in the persecution of Christians (Mark 13:9-13).
There are more signs than these, but as you can see, the preponderance of the evidence indicates there are signs, signs, and more signs everywhere we look.
Preacher Johnson is Pastor of Countryside Baptist Church in northern Parke County, Indiana. Webpage: www.preacherspoint.wordpress.com; email: firstname.lastname@example.org; address: 410 S. Jefferson St. Rockville IN 47872; all Bible references KJV.