"God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, hath in these last days spoken unto us by His Son" (Heb. 1:1,2).
Certainly the most voluminous writer of the words of God to the ancients, and to us, was Moses. Not only did he record for us the covenant, and law, of God which God made with Israel at Sinai, but he wrote five large volumes; detailing the whole creation process, and the development of the nations of the earth for the first 2500 after the creation. Not only so, but he wrote that history in such a way as to prophesy of events to come as far into the future as seven to eight thousand years.
I know it is easier for us to believe the history part than it is the prophecy part, but, if the words I quoted above, from Hebrews ch. 1, are true, then God was speaking to us by Moses. God confirmed that fact when He spoke to us by the prophet Isaiah, saying, "Remember the former things of old: for I am God, and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like me, declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure" (Isa. 46:9-11).
In order for us to really understand what God's communications to man by the Hebrew prophets were all about, we must hear the words of Peter, in 1 Peter 1:9-13. He said, "Receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls. Of which salvation the prophets have enquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you: searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow. Unto whom it was revealed, that not unto themselves, but unto us they did minister the things, which are now reported unto you by them that have preached the gospel unto you with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven; which things the angels desire to look into. Wherefore, gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ."
In the beginning, God spoke to Adam and Eve concerning the Earth and how they were to care for it and rule over all of the fish, the birds, animal life, and every creeping thing that creeps upon the earth. Then, shortly after they had disobeyed God in the matter of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, God prophesied of the messiah which would come and defeat "that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world." Thus we find the first clear and obvious prophecy, at the beginning, in Genesis 3:15. It sort of makes you wonder just how many wonderful prophecies there are in all of those books of the Bible which we have been taught to call "the historical books."
In Hebrews chapter one, we are told that God has now spoken unto us by His Son. Just what does that mean? It might seem that the writer is telling us that God does not speak unto us by prophets anymore, but only by the words which Jesus has spoken to us. However, that would really put Rev. 11:3-12 in a bad light, because the primary work of those two prophets who "Prophesy a thousand two hundred and threescore days," is to gather Christianity together and raise up a nation unto God, for Jesus Christ (Dan. 2:41-45; Deut. 26:5; Rev. 11:8). Furthermore, on March 28, 2004, when the fulfillment of the forty and two months in Rev. 11:2 had been completed the previous day, those "two witnesses" began the fulfillment of the 1260 days of their prophecy. It is evident, therefore, that God still talks to us by prophets.
Let us now consider some of the things which God has spoken to us by His Son. We might well begin with what Jesus told us about prophecy in Matthew 11:13. He had just told us that John the Baptist was a prophet, and more than a prophet, in that he had also fulfilled prophecy. Then he made a profound statement concerning prophecy. He said, "All the prophets and the law prophesied until John." Other Scriptures, such as John 10:34, show that even the Psalms are included in that statement.
I personally do not have any reason to think that Jesus might have made a mistake here, especially since Paul assured us that "God has spoken unto us by His Son." Therefore, what our spiritual ear must hear is that it was God who said, by Jesus Christ, "All the prophets and the law prophesied until John the Baptist."
I think that is of particular interest that so many preachers, of many organizations, frequently tell us that one third of the Bible is prophecy (this was one of the main promotions of the late Herbert W. Armstrong of the World Wide Church of God). One popular radio preacher assures us that the figure is only 25 percent. I assume that there are others who would suggest some other variable. Have we not read Romans 3:4, "Let God be true, but every man a liar?"
I do not mean to make every preacher who is preaching something that is not true "an offender for a word." "All have sinned and come short of the glory of God," but we thank God that His mercy has covered our mistakes. What I do mean to say is that it is time for all of us to awake, and realize the applicability of Jeremiah 16:19 today, to us who believe. For he said, "O Lord, my strength, and my fortress, and my refuge in the day of affliction, the Gentiles shall come unto thee from the ends of the earth, and shall say, Surely our fathers have inherited lies, vanity, and things wherein there is no profit."
Over the centuries, the Church of Rome adopted many doctrines and practices from the other religions of the world; such as forbidding to marry - the consequences of which are so apparent today - blessing those practices, and making them a part of the "Christian way" (1 Tim. 4:1-3). About five hundred years ago, when individuals and nations began to protest and draw away from the traditions of Catholicism, they took many of those errors with them, and then passed them down to us. I will not make us a list for us right now, but it is high time to begin to examine our "religion," and see if we have missed the mark in any of our devotions or doctrines.
The anti-Christian sentiment in America is building, as it is in most of what we call the Western nations. It is no small thing that a Christian minister in Sweden, who was bold enough to have recently spoken out in a sermon concerning the evils of homosexuality, was, in just the last few days, sentenced to a month in prison.
Anti-Christian sentiment and activities have been increasing in America since the early 1960s. However, I noticed that, in the year 2000, they began to accelerate. The attack on the Ten Commandments, outside of Washington, has become a hot issue. And recently the ACLU has begun to attack the cross, at least in parts of California.
We are told by John, in Rev. 17:12-14, that the G-Ten of the U.N. "Shall give their power and strength unto the beast. These shall make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb shall overcome them: for He is Lord of lords, and King of kings: and they that are with Him are called, and chosen and faithful." The European Union is not the beast with ten horns. We have had the G-Ten with us for decades already, and they include Canada, Japan and the United States.
It is time we began to speak to the Lord in prayer the words of Jeremiah which I mentioned above: "O Lord, my strength, and my fortress, and my refuge in the day of affliction," because the day of affliction has already begun to dawn. It is imperative that we begin to rid ourselves of all the errors which we have inherited from our devoted and godly leaders, over the past centuries, and some which have developed more recently.
If we can manage to rid ourselves of all of those errors, then we might be able to avoid the awful consequences of 2 Thess. 2:1-12. Paul said that a great deception is to come upon Christianity just before our bridegroom comes, and that some preachers would be trying to get us to believe that Jesus could come at any time. When in truth He will not come until certain vital prophecies have been fulfilled (Acts 3:20,21). He told of a significant falling away which should occur first. Then he tells of a particular preacher who must be revealed, which Paul calls "That Man of Sin," and "The Son of Perdition." (In John 17:12, Jesus told us that Judas was The Son of Perdition in the Jewish Church, and Paul has told us that the Gentile church must also have one.) Paul continued to prophesy, he told of another man: "That wicked - whose coming is - with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved."
This prominent prophecy is well into the process of its fulfillment. The great deception is in the world now, and it sounds good. But if you allow yourself to be deceived, and believe it, you will fail to believe the truth about the coming of "The day of Christ," or make the necessary preparations for the arrival of our Lord.
God has spoken to us by His Son with many prophecies concerning these momentous days. Therefore, let us arise, and stand strong and tall for God, rooted and grounded in the truth, "as ye see the day approaching" (Heb. 10:25).