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The Strategy: Deceive, Divide, Destroy

Understanding The Times / Jan Markell
The Truth Network Radio
March 27, 2021 8:00 am

The Strategy: Deceive, Divide, Destroy

Understanding The Times / Jan Markell

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March 27, 2021 8:00 am

Jan Markell spends the hour with Dr. Ron Rhodes. Topic one is the intensified spiritual battle you are now facing in these last days. The enemy is working full-time to deceive, divide, and destroy in your life. Then they cover his new Bible prophecy book which emphasizes the convergence of all signs of the times. Find these books in our online store.

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The devil is in the details of your life. So Satan hates you. He doesn't just hate God. Satan hates you. You know, you've heard that phrase, God loves you and has a good plan for your life.

Well, Satan hates you and has a bad plan for your life. Welcome to Understanding the Times Radio with Jan Markell. Radio for the Remnant brought to you by Olive Tree Ministries. Today we are so pleased to spend the hour with apologist Dr. Ron Rhodes as we carry his two newest books. We'll deal with two topics this hour, and we encourage you to fasten your seat belts as we get started.

Here is today's program. Be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might. Put on the whole armor of God that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.

Therefore, take up the whole armor of God that you may be able to withstand in the evil day and having done all to stand firm. Welcome to the program. So glad you can join me today. I have a very special guest coming on here in just a moment. And we happen to be carrying two new books, both authored by my guest, Dr. Ron Rhodes. One of them is called Spiritual Warfare in the End Times.

And the other one is Basic Bible Prophecy, Essential Facts Every Christian Should Know. So we're going to try to divide the programming today and hit each book with some highlights. And again, folks, I'm not here as a saleswoman, but I am here highly promoting the messages contained in these two books. That's my interest is getting the information to you here in these last days that we talk about so often on this program.

And I just think you need all the information you possibly can get on the issues of the day. I've read both books and the Spiritual Warfare in the End Times. I happen to be starting with that, both very fascinating books, but this one particular highlighting the fact that the activity of the enemy, the kind of warfare that we face on a daily basis, it's all going to increase in the last days. Dr. Ron Rhodes, welcome back to the programming. Thank you, Jan.

It's always good to spend some time with you. Ron, I'm just going to read a paragraph or two here from your book. We're starting with Spiritual Warfare in the End Times. And you say here in your book, my friends, the devil has developed specific tactics characterized by deceit and trickery to bring you down and ruin you spiritually, emotionally, and even physically. He's a master at it.

He's had thousands of years of experience and he knows just which scheme will have the highest potential of injuring you. He and his fallen angels are stalking you, watching for weakness, probing for vulnerabilities. You are being profiled. And based on that profile, the powers of darkness are designing a custom blueprint for your fall. Christian beware. Okay, Ron, I've opened with something a little bit ominous because you actually make it kind of scary.

And that's by intent. This whole topic is a little bit scary. And what's even scarier to me, Jan, is the fact that so many Christians are ignorant of this spiritual warfare. And that is exactly the way Satan likes it. He likes to be working behind the scenes with nobody noticing.

He likes to do his work incognito. So the more people that are ignorant of his designs and his activities, the better it is for him. Spiritual warfare is a reality in the Christian life. To say that a Christian could avoid spiritual warfare, it's like imagining that a gardener could avoid dealing with weeds.

You just can't do it. Talking about Satan stalking us, he's looking at different people and he's determining, now, where is Jan weak? How can we watch Jan's life to figure out what we could do to cause a stumble in her life?

And what about that Ron Rose? Where is he vulnerable? What kind of plan can we design that can bring him down? All we need is one little foot in the door. And once we get our foot in the door, then we can move in and wreak further havoc in his life. That's what I mean when I say that Satan and the fallen angels are stalking you.

They are profiling you and they are determining what strategy would be best used against you. Jan, you've heard of the schemes of the devil. That's what we're talking about. Ron, you put this in an end time context. When did you notice this start to ramp up? I don't need an exact date, but 25 years ago, when did this all pick up such steam, including the doctrine of demons that's entered our churches?

Well, there's a number of things that have converged in my own mind to let me know that there was a strong connection. And I'd say in the last decade or two, it's really come to a real strength. Just look at what's happened in the last year or two. Many people are observing the capitalism that has come under attack and socialism and globalism coming to the forefront. I think Satan is setting things up for the socialistic government of the tribulation period.

What about the rise of lawlessness and anarchy? Doesn't that relate to the spirit of Antichrist? And who energizes the Antichrist? It is Satan, 2 Thessalonians 2. What about the strong delusion that's come upon our land?

People want to get rid of police. Everywhere, evil is being called good. This is clearly something that the devil is causing. Jan, what about the lies that we're hearing from political leaders and economic leaders and religious leaders, even within churches? Does not scripture tell us that Satan is the father of lies, who inspires all this deception? Ron, what I hear you saying then is everything that's going on, at least in the last 10 years, certainly the last year, is setting the stage for the tribulation period, is what you're saying?

That's exactly what I'm saying. And that includes ongoing persecution against Christians. I've never felt so marginalized in my life as a Christian as I do this year. There's also major Christian leaders and Christians everywhere who are being ensnared by the powers of darkness in terms of sexual immorality.

We've got major leaders falling. I believe that Satan is engaging in this behind the scenes as 1 Corinthians 7, 5 warns, and 1 Timothy 3, 7. And the attempt of the powers of darkness is to discredit Christianity before a watching world.

And doesn't that seem quite compatible with the rejection of Christianity by masses of people today? But there's also, Ron Rhodes, a denial of the reality of Satan going on today, including in some of our churches. People can hear about demonic activity. They can hear about warfare battling the enemy. They can hear about being harassed by the devil.

They can hear about fallen angels. A lot of times they just cower in fear. We need to assure them that they need not, even though the point of what we're talking about, at least in this segment, is that all of this is ramping up to a new level, probably not seen maybe forever, but that we need not cower in fear.

No, we shouldn't cower in fear. And one of the things I like to point out in the book is that one of the best ways to keep the enemy out is to keep Christ in. Even though my book is about spiritual warfare, it's also about Christ because Christ is the victor. The sheep need not be terrified by the wolf as long as the sheep stay close to the shepherd.

That's the key thing. You know what happens when you turn on the light? The darkness goes away. When you walk with the light of the world, Jesus Christ, that dispels the darkness, including the darkness of the devil. Even though this book talks about specific strategies of the powers of darkness to bring you down, and you need to know about that, by the way, the key thing is to bring you back to Jesus, to walk with him closely. We're told to actually put on the Lord Jesus just like we put on clothes in the morning. The reality of that closeness with Jesus is enough to dispel the powers of darkness. But how many Christians today ignore that? So many Christians make Christianity a Sunday thing, and even then it's not too much of their lives. We need Christianity 24-7, and Christianity is not a religion. It is a relationship with the living Lord Jesus Christ.

Here's Dr. Charles Stanley weighing in on the topic. Satan is your enemy. Now, his strategy can be found in three words, just three words, deceive, divide, destroy. Whether it's a nation, whether it's a church, whether it's a family, Satan's busy. Satan is a divider. He's a deceiver. He is a destroyer. That's his purpose, to destroy our testimony, to destroy our life physically, to destroy our finances, destroy our marriage, destroy our families, destroy, destroy, destroy. So deceive, divide, destroy.

That's all he needs. You're listening to Understanding the Times Radio. If you just join me, and I'm spending the hour with apologist, Dr. Ron Rhodes. Ron, best website for you is which one? It's And I'm going back to the book. We carry it. It's in our online store, Spiritual Warfare in the End Times. We're going to get to another new book of his in a minute, but we're opening the program with this one. Find it in my online store.

Give my office a call. You write this. This is the character and goal of Satan and his fallen angels.

Just reading a short paragraph. Satan's ultimate intention is to ruin you. Your destruction is his highest priority. That's the assessment of Pastor Erwin Lutzer. And then you go on to say, Satan can attack a Christian physically, spiritually. He can sift Christians and even fill their hearts. To lie, you say, if permitted by God, he can engage in the destruction of the flesh. You write, he can tempt Christians and harass them.

You give verses for all of this. You say he seeks to hinder Christians. You say he seeks to ensnare them, devour them, accuse them, cause them strife.

You conclude the paragraph. He will do anything he can to obstruct the purposes God desires to accomplish through Christ and his followers. But Ron, in all that I read, there's four words that are really important and that is if permitted by God. Therefore, God obviously permits Satan to have some huge influence on us.

All these little categories that I just read. He does permit that. He has to get God's permission. You might remember from the book of Job, Satan had to go up and ask God permission to inflict damage upon the life of Job. And that means that Satan is on a leash. Now, there's both a warning and a comfort there. The warning is that you may indeed be allowed to experience some kind of an attack by Satan, but the comfort is Satan can never go beyond what God will allow. But the key thing that I want to emphasize here is the Christian himself has personal responsibility to live his life in such a way as to minimize and thwart the attacks of Satan and demons, because there are certain things that you can do that will open up an opportunity for you to come into bondage. And that's something that you've got to stand against, some little immorality. Maybe I can tell this one little lie. Maybe I can take this one little peek at pornography and not be hurt too badly.

Maybe I can cheat on my taxes just this one time. You see, it's those decisions to do things against God, where Satan gets his foot in the door, and that enables him to get further in so that he can launch a bigger, more major attack later. It's true that we can be attacked by Satan, but we can open the door for much greater attacks by the way that we live. And that's one of the warnings of this book. Sure.

In the book, you talk about, not extensively, but enough of a chapter to help me understand it better. You talk about demon possession, oppression, or just being demonized. I think we all know what demon possession is, and a Christian cannot be demon possessed, correct?

That's my position. There are some Christians who differ with that, but I think that if you look at the scriptures, you're not going to find a single verse that talks about a Christian being possessed by the devil. But you will find indications that Satan can oppress a Christian. Yes.

Okay. And let's explain the difference, because we've got possession, we've got oppression, and then you talk about being demonized. We need to clarify what being demonized is. Demon possession involves Satan working from within or inside a person. And that would necessitate that the devil or a demon take up habitation within the body of a Christian where the Holy Spirit already lives.

Now, that's just not biblical. I agree with Walter Martin, who used to say, when the devil comes knocking on the door of the Christian's heart, the Holy Spirit opens the door and says, get lost. Satan cannot enter into a Christian. However, what about oppression?

How is that different? In oppression, Satan and demons work from outside of the believer. They work externally to the believer. However, there are theologians who warn that if a Christian gives enough ground to the devil or to demons, and they do not repent of sins, and they continue to live in the world, and they're subject to the world and the flesh and the devil, that sometimes the actual symptoms of demonic oppression might actually mimic possession. We need to not think that we're safe, as long as we're not possessed.

Let me tell you, you're not safe. And if you give the devil enough ground, severe affliction can come upon you. Then you mentioned demonization. Demonization is this idea that there are varying degrees upon which the devil or demons can move upon a Christian in such a way as to cause sin or bondage.

It could be mental bondage, it could be spiritual bondage, it could be emotional bondage, but a lot of it has to do with the way that you live your life. If you are a carnal Christian, then you become a target rich environment for demonization. If you are a Christian that walks closely with Jesus, you are less of a target, even though you will still be attacked.

I need to be careful there, Jan, because those of us who seek to glorify Christ, such as you with your show, and so many other wonderful people involved in prophetic ministry, they've also got a big bullseye on their backs. The devil's work there is not because of sin, it's because Satan wants to thwart you. It's because he wants to hinder you in ministry. He wants to stop your message from going out over the airwaves. That's why he attacks you.

That's why he attacks me. So we need to be aware of that. Every Christian, bar none, needs to understand the reality of spiritual warfare. And to ignore it is to do so to your own detriment. And we carry this book Spiritual Warfare in the End Times find it at views as in viewpoint,

Give my office a call or get on our various newsletter lists, and you'll find it promoted in those newsletters. Ron Rhodes, a little bit of the history of Satan here because he was called Lucifer. He had unparalleled beauty and might. And as you expose here, pride was at the root of his fall. Do you think all angels are capable of such characteristics as envy, pride, jealousy, which summarizes Lucifer, Satan, obviously. He was very impressed with himself.

In other words, is he just the leader of the pack? Lucifer was the worst of the worst. In fact, Lucifer actually wanted to take God's place. He was so impressed with himself that he wanted to take the throne of God.

He wanted to ascend up to the highest heaven and set up his throne and rule over the universe. But demons too are called unclean spirits. Isn't it interesting, Jan, that spirits are often described by their character? For example, the Holy Spirit is holy. Unclean spirits are unclean. They are immoral. They are characterized by various forms of wickedness. Now, certainly pride is a part of that. Arrogance is a part of that. But we're also talking about sexual immorality, lying, thievery, every kind of vice that you can think of is fair game for demonic spirits.

That's why it is so critically important that the Christian turn away from these kinds of things. Because if you don't, you're going to open yourself up to relentless attacks. And you might wonder, why is your life not going? Why is your life characterized by depression and anxiety? Why is your life characterized by guilt that just plays you every day that you live? And why do you have fear of the future?

Why are you constantly plagued by the fear of death? All of these things relate to spiritual warfare. And I spell it out in detail in this book.

Let me read another paragraph. This happens to be on page 70, the flinging flaming darts. And you write this, every one of us as Christians are targets of the flaming darts of the evil one.

Ephesians 6 16. There are all kinds of flaming darts the devil may fling. You may find yourself targeted with a dart of discouragement.

Sometimes you might suffer a dart of doubting your faith in God or doubting your faith in the Bible or doubting your salvation. Sometimes you might experience the dart of personal offense that causes resentment in your heart towards someone. You say you might also suffer a dart of jealousy or covetousness or constant worry or debilitating guilt over something you've done.

Perhaps you may experience a dart of lust. Ron, are you saying that if in fact we are struggling with jealousy, the lacking of faith or doubting even our salvation, that these are thoughts planted by Satan? I won't say that every time a Christian experiences these things that it's the devil doing it. It's important to understand that you also have fallen flesh, and some of your experiences and some of your thoughts can come from your fallen flesh and can be aggravated by the world system. The world is always feeding us lies about ourselves and about how to be happy. But it's also very clear from scripture that Satan and demons have the opportunity and the desire to use discouragement and doubt and personal offense and worry as tools to bring you down.

Now the word picture is important. The ancient warriors used to use flaming darts to disable and incapacitate an enemy combatant. That's exactly what the devil wants to do to you. He wants to incapacitate you.

He wants to make sure that you no longer exhibit the joy of the Lord in your life. As one of my colleagues, David Jeremiah, put it, the devil has a quiver full of darts, and he sends exactly the right ones our way when we least expect it. You remember what I said earlier, Jan, about how demons and Satan are watching you, probing for weaknesses and vulnerabilities?

They will choose a specific dart based upon their research as they continue to profile you day by day, and they choose the dart that they think is going to best have a good chance of bringing you down. One of the best things that you can do is to become educated about this. The more that you understand the specific tactics of the powers of darkness, the more you can recognize it when it happens, and the more that you will be motivated to stay close to the shepherd, so the wolves will stay away. Ron, you say this, if you seek to expose Satan, the spiritual warfare will intensify. Well, quite frankly, that's what you and I are doing this particular hour. And maybe that's why I've had such a rough week this week, and I mean that with all sincerity. But you said those who seek to expose Satan, spiritual warfare will intensify. That almost makes someone like me want to go the other direction and not do any exposing, because I think he's come after me this week in a very serious way.

You and me both. We've both been struggling with some things, and I've had things happen to me that would just chill you to the bone. For example, when I write books on stuff like this, I'll order a big order of books on the subject, and then the seller of these books will write to me and say, they don't know what happened, but the whole box got obliterated and the books are in a thousand pieces.

Well, where did that come from? And where did this overwhelming sense of oppression come from when I'm trying to write this book? I once had such overwhelming oppression that I went to the elders of my church, and once they prayed over me, it lifted instantly.

And what about physical symptoms? They have the power to slow you down by physical symptoms, and they can't go beyond what God allows. But Jan, here's the thing. I believe that sometimes God allows people like you and me and other Christians to experience this because it forces us to depend on God. God wants us in a position of dependence. He doesn't want us to try to do this stuff in our own strength.

And that's the danger. We always have a tendency to want to do it in our own strength. But God allows us, I think, to experience some of this, to force dependence upon him and his strength. Wasn't that the way that God did it with Paul? Not that I'm comparing myself with Paul, because I'm just a little peon.

The fact is, God allowed Paul to retain that thorn in the flesh, which is a messenger of Satan, in order to keep Paul dependent upon God. So I think that there's biblical support for that idea. Talking to Ron Rhodes for the hour, because we're carrying two of his newest books, Spiritual Warfare in the End Times, part two of our programming. We're going to hit the new book, Basic Bible Prophecy, Essential Facts Every Christian Should Know. Ron, you say here, and by the way, as we wrap this segment up, what we do want to emphasize too is greater is he that is in us than he that is out there harassing us. But you write about Satan's blueprint against Christians in the last days.

Now, we've kind of summarized that, but I'm talking now end of end of days. Therefore, what can my average listener be on the lookout for as far as demonic harassment, et cetera, here in the closing hours of history? Well, I think what they can watch for some of the stuff that we've been talking about, Satan does not want you to live a victorious life. And so he's going to go after you with his darts.

And those darts can be jealousy or worry or anxiety. He doesn't want you to be a Christian that other people look to and say, wow, I want what that person has. That person is walking with Christ. Satan is seeking to shut down the witness of Christians. At the same time, I believe that Satan is going to up the persecution against Christians. We know that Satan has the ability to do that. If you read chapter 12, for example, we see that Satan has the ability to motivate persecution against the Jewish people. And we read in Revelation 13 and the Book of Daniel that Satan not only has the ability to attack believers in God, but that he can actually overcome them. That's a scary thought. And during the tribulation, we are told specifically that Satan will, in fact, overcome the saints. I think that as we draw near to the end times, that's going to increase. I believe there's going to be temptations to immorality as never before. And I hate to say that, but we're seeing that. Yeah, we're seeing that, including a few major Christian leaders.

We'll spare the names right now, but everybody would know. That's right. Again, I think that Satan is doing that to discredit Christianity, and that goes right in line with the broader attacks against Christianity today. And I think that Christians are being marginalized in a way today as never before in education, in government, at the workplace. No matter where you look and no matter where you go, Christians are being made to look like the intellectual Neanderthals of the age. And that's going to get worse.

As bad as it is today, it's going to get worse. And my best advice to you is, turn your eyes upon Jesus, the author and finisher of your faith. The closer that you as a sheep say to the shepherd, the safer you will be from the wolves, because the wolves are going to step up their activity as never before in these end times in which we live.

Ron writes this, he says, only Christians who seek to live for Christ, who seek to live in obedience to him and shine his lights in a dark world are at highest risk from the powers of darkness, the more spiritual and victorious the believer, the greater the satanic and demonic assaults against him. That's ominous. Ron Rhodes, I'm down to a couple minutes. We're going to wrap this particular book up and move on to the other one. But I want you to sum up and take a couple of minutes. And you've done that beautifully.

I appreciate it. I just do want us to go out of this segment on a high note. I wrote this book in such a way as to end on a high note. I do talk about the reality of spiritual warfare, but I also talk about the victory that you and I can have, the importance of keeping Christ in. The best way to keep the enemy out is to keep Christ in. I talk about the necessity of turning on the light.

When you turn on the light, the darkness dispels. Walk in the light of Christ. Walk in the light of the Christian scriptures. And by walking in the light, I'm talking about live in obedience to the word of God.

I'm talking about putting on the Lord Jesus Christ just as you put on clothes. Romans 13, verse 14. You mentioned a verse earlier, greater is he who is in you than he who is of the world. Did you know that among the fruit of the Spirit is all kinds of things that stand against the devil? Instead of giving place to the devil through anger, the fruit of the Spirit is love and patience. Instead of giving place to the devil through sexual sin, the fruit of the Spirit is self-control. Instead of succumbing to discouragement and depression, the fruit of the Spirit is joy and peace. I just exhort Christians, stay close to Jesus. Walk in the power of the Holy Spirit. Keep your lives rooted in the Word of God.

And you really will have a sense of victory, despite the fact that you will, in fact, experience spiritual warfare. When I come back, we're going to discuss Book Number Two. We're carrying both of these basic Bible prophecy essential facts every Christian should know. I love this little book and we're going to try to hit some highlights of it and talk about this topic. It's so important. We talk about it frequently, not every week, but frequently on this program, Understanding the Times Radio. And Ron, how many books have you written now? It's coming up on 85. 85 books.

And a lot of those are on end time things that the Bible talks about, including our very troubling and perilous times. When I get back, we'll launch into that. So don't go away.

I'm coming right back. We hope you'll stay in touch with us online through That's You can call us simple time at 763-559-4444. That's 763-559-4444. Write us through the mail at Olive Tree Ministries and Jan Martel, Post Office Box 1452, Maple Grove, Minnesota 55311. That's Box 1452, Maple Grove, Minnesota 55311.

All gifts are tax deductible. In this age of uncertainty, thank you for trusting this ministry to deliver you news, information, and inspiration. We are carrying an exciting new product here at Olive Tree Ministries that has authored Jeff Kinley's newest book, After Shocks, Christians Entering a New Era of Global Crisis. Living in this era of pandemics, economic chaos, natural disasters, and political strife, you may feel tempted to question whether God is in control. Yet when you look to the Bible, you'll find these events actually signal that His promises will soon be fulfilled.

In the book you will read how global trends foreshadow the nearness of the very end of days. Find it in our online store at That's Or give our office a call Central Time at 763-559-4444.

That's 763-559-4444. You will also find it offered in our print magazine and e-newsletter. Stay up to date and in tune with our times with the many products this ministry offers to help you understand what will take place in terms of the Tribulation. So I think there is good reason to be excited today as a Christian. We change topics with Ron Rhodes in this segment, returning to a familiar theme of Christ's soon return.

We carry these new products in our online store along with three dozen other cutting edge books and videos. Here are Jan Markell and Ron Rhodes to wrap up this week's program. Social prophecy is one of the most ignored topics in churches today. Pastors avoid it like a plague. They usually assert that it is either too controversial or too difficult to understand.

And they often claim it is too other worldly, meaning it has no relevance to Christian living here and now. The result is that one-fourth to one-third of God's Word has been put on the shelf and the average Christian ends up living with no anticipation or even yearning for the Lord's soon return. And welcome back. We're carrying two new books. We covered the first one in part one.

Part two here with Dr. Ron Rhodes. We'll talk about basic Bible prophecy, essential facts every Christian should know. Understand I'm trying to squeeze in all content on about 220 pages roughly into a 30 minute interview here.

Same with part one. So we can only touch on some highlights and we'll try hard to do that. Ron Rhodes, a couple of items you sent to me and I've got some of my own notes obviously in front of me, but why is it important to study the basics of Bible prophecy? And as Dave Reagan just said seconds ago, most churches are going to run the other direction from it. And last week I did a program on the tribulation and what actually is going to happen in the tribulation. I don't blame some people from running the other direction from some of the topics of eschatology, but tell us why you think that studying the basics is so important. Jan, before you build a house, you build a foundation of the house and understanding the basics of Bible prophecy is like building the foundation of a house. The sturdier your foundation, the more unshakable are your prophetic beliefs. And I think that's one of the reasons why the basics are so important. Certainly an understanding of the basics will keep you from falling for false ideas about prophecy.

And that's important today because there's so many false ideas floating around out there. I think that understanding the basics of Bible prophecy embraces the idea that the main things are the plain things and the plain things are the main things when it comes to Bible prophecy. And as you know from speaking in the past, Jan, I've always emphasized that understanding the basics follows the interpretive principle that when the plain sense makes good sense, seek no other sense lest you end up nonsense. I think if you don't understand the basics, you're like a leaf in the wind that can easily be blown every which direction. The more educated you are in the basics, the more solid your foundation and the better your mental grid through which you can interpret the events that are taking place around us.

And I don't care if you're a young Christian or a seasoned Christian, everybody needs to understand the basics of Bible prophecy. All of us looked with astonishment on 2020. And quite frankly, as we're really moving into 2021, some amazing things have been going on. 2020, I mean, it became obvious that we're rushing towards globalism.

A pandemic certainly helped the rush to the one world system. We are observing more and more, I'm going to just use the word totalitarianism as it comes to how we're being herded, you know, shut into our homes, businesses closed, things like that, kind of setting the stage here for what's going to be coming in the tribulation. But I think you need to speak into that because you do in this book.

I do. And I think that what's happened in 2020 and 2021 is so significant. And I think it's caused a lot of people to become more interested in prophecy.

To be sure, there are still churches that don't teach anything about it. But many others have turned to prophecy to find out what's going on. For example, with the outbreak of the global pandemic, many have become interested in Jesus's prophetic warning that in the end times, there will be plagues in many lands. And with the rise of violence and anarchy in the streets, many have become interested in Jesus's prophecy that in the end times, sin will be rampant everywhere and the love of many will grow cold. With the rise of lawlessness in the land, many have become interested in Paul's prophecy of how the spirit of Antichrist energizes lawlessness in the end times. And what about the great reset? I'm sure you've probably done whole shows.

I have several. This involves an anti-God globalistic socialism and globalistic government. These guys don't like God. They don't like nations. They're trying to eliminate national sovereignty. They want to eliminate private property, own nothing and be happy about Christianity.

Oh, nothing and be happy. Sounds like John Lennon. It does sound like John Lennon. These kinds of ideas have made many people interested. What does the Bible say about globalism? For example, in Revelation 13, all of these things, Jan, are part and parcel of what I consider to be the basics of Bible prophecy.

And that's why I wrote this book. I want Christians to understand the basics so that when all of this stuff is happening before our very eyes, we will have a Bible-based mental grid through which we can understand exactly what is taking place and how it is actually fulfilling the prophecies found in Scripture. Ron is talking about the book we carry in our store, Basic Bible Prophecy, Essential Facts Every Christian Should Know,, views as in viewpoint, Get my office a call. Again, get on our newsletter lists and you'll find it promoted in those newsletters. You can find out more about Ron Rhodes at That's R-H-O-D-E-S. Ron, this is just a little aside, but I think it's important. You emailed me. This was during the terrible ordeal that Texas went through, I believe it was back in February.

High headquarter out of Minnesota. We live those kinds of conditions five months out of the year, but Texas does not. Texas wasn't prepared for what happened, the bitter cold, everything that came with it.

And you wrote this to me in three sentences. You say, the state of Texas has been hugely humbled in just a matter of days. To me, it illustrates just how fast the entire world will be brought to its knees when the widespread cosmic disturbances of the tribulation period are unleashed. It can happen so fast, faster than anyone expects. As scripture says, ruin shall come upon you suddenly, of which you know nothing. No one prepares for it. No one expects it. Then, bam, here it is.

Sudden destruction will prevail during the tribulation period. That to me was fascinating. And I'm sure there was a lesson. Do you think anybody got the lesson? I think that some people did, others are blind to what's happening in the world. But you know, when you look at it, there were people who were literally freezing to death in their own homes.

And yes, there were casualties. Many crops in Texas were ruined, not only reducing our food supply and the supply for the whole nation, but that causes the surviving crops to get raised in price. Suddenly Texans are scrambling for food and water because distribution broke down. When the electricity went out, the refrigerators at the stores no longer worked, vast amounts of frozen food thawed out and got ruined.

No one could get to hospitals or doctor's offices and pharmacies. The damages to homes and businesses and property in general was immense. And by the way, Jan, I live here. I don't know if we mentioned, I live in Texas.

So this is my backyard that we're talking about. And the point that I'm making is that this is just an ice storm. Look at how Texas was brought to its knees by a ice storm. Now you compare the ice storm with the tremendous cosmic disturbances of the tribulation period, and there's no comparison. The fact is that once the cosmic disturbances of the tribulation period hit, the critical lifelines of electricity, water, food, medical care, medical prescriptions and the like will quickly vanish. Unlike Texas, there will be no recovery. Things will go from bad to worse in both intensity and frequency, just like birth pain. If you've ever wondered how can these things happen so fast in the book of Revelation, all this destruction, your question is answered. Wonder no more.

Recent events in Texas illustrate just how fast things can go horribly wrong. Talking to Dr. Ron Rhodes for the hour. This particular book we are referencing again, Greek Bible Prophecy.

Find it in my store, newsletters, give my office a call. I want to play a clip, Ron. It's out of you.

And then I want to come back and talk about it. You know, we really have come up with a lot of terms to describe our different positions, haven't we? To a lot of people, it's Greek. We talk about pre-tribulationism and mid-tribulationism and post-tribulationism, amillennialism and post-millennialism and premillennialism and covenant theology and dispensationalism, and on and on it goes. And the rapture is just one of many different words. And I think to some people it's a little bit confusing. I think a lot of people have a difficulty trying to unravel how complicated some of this is.

And what I want to do today is just to zero in on one word. And hopefully by the time we're done today, you'll have a good understanding of the different views of the rapture and in particular why I have chosen pre-tribulationism. It could be that you hold a different view. That's the case.

That's okay. What I like to tell people is even if some of us may have different views on the timing of the rapture, we agree on a lot more than we disagree on, right? I mean, after all, we all agree that there will be a rapture, that there will be a second coming, that there will be a judgment that we'll have to give an answer for or give an answer to Christ at the judgment seat. We'll live forever with God. I mean, all those things are the big picture.

Those things ought to bring us unity. And so if we have a little bit of a disagreement on the timing of the rapture, well, that's okay. But I'm still going to tell you why I'm a pre-tribulationist.

I'm going to tell you why I'm not one of the other positions. But again, if you disagree with me, that's okay. You're still my brother or sister in the Lord. Ron, you introduced that little clip there talking about some of the big words in eschatology. For that matter, eschatology is a big word. We haven't even talked about the literal versus allegorical way of interpreting the Bible, which we probably should reference that. But I think the point is here that you would like to see eschatology be easy to understand. I kind of think that's your specialty when it comes to communication. Perhaps you've tried to slip that into this book as well.

You're right. I've tried to make this the easiest possible way to understand biblical prophecy. I'm trying to be a tour guide. What I'm trying to do is to take you by the hand and taking you throughout the scriptures and showing you what you need to know in terms of the who, the what, the when, the where, and the why of Bible prophecy. And it's a good thing to look at different vantage points because we're looking at the same prophetic realities from different positions.

And the more that you do that, the better it sticks in your brain. Jan, I know that to be true because the way that I came to learn Bible prophecy was to study these very things. Since I've been there and done that, I feel like I can be a good tour guide and taking the reader all the way through biblical prophecy so that you're conversational by the time we're done. In other words, you can converse with anyone about the big issues of Bible prophecy. And I should mention to you, Jan, I don't try to bury the reader in detail. There are so many things that we could bring up in the context of a prophecy book that would just make a reader get overwhelmed with detail.

Exactly. And then you add into that the conflicting views. And my goodness, look at all the conflicting views. I just said there's literal versus allegorical, there's pre-trib, mid-trib, post-trib, there's covenant theology, dispensational theology. And you closed that little clip saying I'm a pre-tribulationist defending that. Why don't you give us a paragraph? First, what is pre-tribulationism?

And then why are you standing by this position? Pre-tribulationism ought to give away what we're talking about. The pre-trib viewpoint says that the rapture of the church takes place pre the tribulation period. It happens before the tribulation.

That means that the church will be exempt from all the judgments of God that fall upon the world. Jan, this is based upon a literal understanding of biblical prophecy. Some of the other viewpoints hold to a more allegorical understanding of Bible prophecy. And you need to define what allegorical means. Allegorical means that there's symbolic ways of interpreting every prophecy.

For example, the 144,000 Jewish evangelists in Revelation, maybe that doesn't really refer to 144,000 Jews. Maybe that's a metaphorical or symbolic representation of the church. That's what I mean by a symbol or an allegory. We believe it's literal. We believe it's literal, just as I believe that the rapture will literally be before the tribulation period.

And here's why. There's over 100 prophecies about the Messiah in the Old Testament, about the first coming of the Messiah. Every one of them was fulfilled literally. And because it was fulfilled literally, that means no allegory here. And I always like to remind people that if they want to understand how God is going to fulfill prophecies in the future, consider how He has already fulfilled prophecies in the past.

God is consistent. The prophecies of the first coming found literal fulfillment, all the prophecies of the second coming and the events that lead up to it will likewise find literal fulfillment. What that means, Chan, is that when Scripture tells us that God intends for the church to be delivered from the wrath to come and from the day of wrath, that means that He does not want the church to go through the tribulation period, which is the day of wrath. When Scripture says that the nations and Israel will go through the tribulation period, but not the church, I take that quite literally. There's not a single reference in the Old Testament to the church going through the tribulation. There's not a single reference in the New Testament to the church going through the tribulation. There will be believers during the tribulation, but they become believers after the tribulation has begun. It's basically just a literal interpretation that leads me to say that pre-tribulationism is the correct view. Considering, Ron, the tide of our times, and you and I have been monitoring the tide of our times here for a few decades, what current events would you encourage people to be focusing on?

Here are some options. Middle East issues, cultural issues. We've already referenced the decline of the culture.

Political issues. After all, the Antichrist is going to be a politician and we've got some Antichrist-esque activities going on in Washington, D.C., not to mention Europe. We've got apostasy in the church, considering the tide of our times, and maybe you might answer perhaps all of these events we should be keeping our eyes on, but does something jump out at you? What jumps out to me is the word convergence. What I mean by that is you've got multiple prophecies converging together. For example, Israel will become a nation again after a long and worldwide dispersion. That happened in 1948. Scripture then prophesies that Jewish people from all over the world will go back to Israel.

That's been happening every year since 1948. Scripture then prophesies that a coalition made up of a number of Muslim nations and Russia would one day launch an attack against Israel. That hasn't happened yet, but the stage is now set because there are now alliances between Russia and these Muslim nations and they don't like Israel. We could talk about the rebuilding of the Temple in the tribulation period. Even now the money is being raised and the architectural hands drawn up.

Instruments of the Temple are being prefabricated. There are people talking about peace and safety in the Middle East. Just as Scripture said there would be people talking about peace and safety in the Middle East, and then sudden destruction will come upon them. Of course, all of that is setting the stage for the eventual covenant to be signed between the Antichrist and Israel. To me, the convergence of all of these prophecies together says one thing. The day of our deliverance draws near. I'm talking about the day of the rapture because I believe that the church is going to be taken off the earth before all of these other things will take place in terms of the tribulation.

So I think there's good reason to be excited today as a Christian. If you just join me, you're listening to Understanding the Times Radio, Jan Markell, have on the line from Texas, Dr. Ron Rhodes. Probably interviewed Ron for about 15 years now on some of his 80 books that he's written.

We have carried so many of them. Ron, I understand just a quick aside here. You're actually doing a workbook to end times in chronological order?

That's right. I'm working on that right now. Wonderful.

It's going to be a good one. The publisher approached me because the original book, The End Times in Chronological Order, under God's providential blessing, did super good, not only in the United States, but in multiple languages around the world. We sense that God's people are interested in this. As you know, Jan, I write books to educate God's people and to exalt God in His Word.

I personally do not care or have any personal investment in that money because that's not something that I need. If I can bless God's people through the written Word, there's just nothing that I'd rather be doing. I know that you feel the same way about ministry.

I'm very excited to be working on this right now, and it should be done in the very near future. I'm back to the midpoint of your book in Basic Bible Prophecy. I'm looking at a page here that jumped out at me, and let's talk about it, at least for a couple of minutes here.

It's titled, The United States May Weaken as We Progress into the End Times. As we speak, Ron, and I've done a lot of programming on what's been going on in our wonderful land of the free, home of the brave here for the last year, even over a year now. The pandemic hit in March of 2020. Life changed as we know it.

It remains changed. I know many think we're going to go back to normal. All sorts of things from future elections to a vaccine. They're going to turn the world back, and the happy days are here again.

I personally don't believe that. Why don't you talk to me for a minute about The United States May Weaken as We Progress into the End Times, because that's what I see on the horizon. Well, I see it on the horizon, too. And the reason I see that The United States May Weaken as We Progress into the End Times is that The United States of Europe will become the superpower of The End Times. And I'm talking about a revived Roman Empire.

Now, there's a variety of possible reasons that may account for the weakening of The United States. More recently, I might mention that the current administration is much more hostile to Israel. And I wonder how that relates to the Abrahamic Covenant. The Abrahamic Covenant says that God will bless those who bless Israel, but He will curse those who curse Israel.

So if The United States turns its back on Israel, what are the implications for The United States? I am personally concerned about that. Another possibility, Jan, is the rapture of the Church. I could never be so bold as to claim that we've got more Christians here than any other nation.

I will claim that we've got an awful lot of Christians here. And when the rapture of the Church takes place, you're going to have people from every profession suddenly gone. Not only that, but once the Church is raptured off the earth, the restraining influence of the Holy Spirit is gone as well. If The United States is falling into filth like crazy today, and there is tremendous moral filth, what will happen when the Restrainer, who is the Holy Spirit, is removed at the rapture? I just hesitate to think about what might happen there. I also think about the fact that our country has come under strong delusion. And when a nation comes under strong delusion, God hands that nation over to experience the full brunt of the choices they have made, which involves a judgment.

It is a judgment from God. Jan, I'm not worried that that's going to come in the future. I'm worried that we're already there.

Yeah, I am too, Ron. There's other things that might cause this weakening of the United States, including attacks by terrorists. But I tell you, these are days of discernment, Jan. And a Christian, to not be aware of these things is, again, doing so at his own detriment. That's why I wrote Basic Bible Prophecy. I don't bury you in details, but I give you everything that you need to know. And I'm a tour guide that walks you through exactly what you need to know. Very well said. And we're carrying it, folks, Let me ask you a question, Ron.

Clearly, you and I could spend hours discussing the various issues that we're talking about and that you have outlined in the pages of this book. Many ask, why is a millennium needed? We're enjoying heaven, terrible tribulation going on on earth for seven years. We have to come back to this place. Obviously, it's going to be cleaned up. Jesus Christ will clean it up. He'll be ruling from Jerusalem. And then part two of my question, why is Satan allowed to lead one final rebellion against God? I think the answer is related to God's overall purpose in human history.

And I relate it to dispensationalism. Throughout the various ages, God always demonstrates that human beings fall no matter what circumstances exist. During the Millennial Kingdom, what could be better? Christ is going to rule from Jerusalem. The church is going to be involved in reigning with him. God is going to restore spiritual blessings and longevity.

He's going to restore physical blessings on the earth. Only believers will enter into the Millennial Kingdom, but they will do so in their mortal bodies, which means they continue to get married, have babies, and those babies eventually grow up. This goes on and on throughout the millennium, so that by the time of the end of the millennium, not everybody is a believer, even though there's a perfect environment on the earth, so that Christ can illustrate this without any dispute to anyone. Satan is allowed to do his work at the very end of the Millennial Kingdom in terms of leading a rebellion against God. And there will be countless people who are unsaved that participate. God thereby proves that no matter how perfect the conditions are on earth, there is a sin nature in human beings that causes them to fall.

So God will be vindicated in the end. God is always warned against the damages of evil and the damages of sin, and nobody will be able to argue against that verdict once all human ages are over with. But the good news, Chan, is that after the Millennial Kingdom comes the eternal state. In the eternal state, you're going to have a resurrection body, you're going to live on a resurrected earth, in a resurrected universe, and there's no more sin, and there's no more Satan.

What could be better than that? If we're literalists, which we stated earlier we are, that millennium of a thousand years is a literal one thousand years. That is correct. It's going to last one thousand years. I mean, there's nothing in the context that indicates that that's to be taken spiritually, or allegorically, or symbolically. And by the way, even the symbols that are in the book of Revelation are often defined for us so that we can derive the literal meaning from that symbol. For example, when you look at incense, Scripture defines that incense as being the prayer of the saints. The point that I'm making is, unless there's some kind of an indication in the context that is to be taken symbolically, we should interpret it as a literal meaning.

There's no indication that this is less than a thousand years. You kind of wind up this book and its basic Bible prophecy, Essential Facts Every Christian Should Know, and I am down, Ron, to about three minutes here, but you have a whole chapter — Motivation to Live Expectantly. And I think in light of some of the things we've talked about this entire hour, and it's been a very serious hour, and as we get into end time issues, we're talking about the implosion of America, and some of these things that are disheartening, to say the least. You still encourage a motivation to live expectantly. Why don't we wrap it up with you talking about that?

And I've got a couple minutes here. Okay, well, I'm glad that you're closing this way, because I love this topic. My old friend Walter Martin used to say, I read the last chapter in the book, and we win.

He really said it right. When you look at the book of Revelation, especially at the end, we really do win. In terms of living expectantly, there's so much stuff to expect in the future that is wonderful for the Christian. For one thing, the rapture is imminent. It could take place at any moment. There is not a single prophecy that must be fulfilled before the rapture takes place.

So that's something that we can expect as happening at any moment. Furthermore, we're going to be with Christ the very moment that we follow death. Let's say that we don't live up until the time of the rapture and we die before then.

No problem. When you die as a Christian, you're going to be directly in the presence of the Lord Jesus Christ, so you can live expectantly. Death will not defeat you. Still further, once you die and are resurrected at the rapture, you're going to have a glorified body that never gets old and never dies. There's no imperfections. There's no wrinkly skin or bald heads.

There's no heart problems, no kind of disease at all. Jan, you can even eat food in your resurrection body. Scripture talks about that. That's what Jesus did.

He ate food on four different occasions in his resurrection body. So again, we can live expectantly there. Not only that, but our resurrection body will be sturdy as a building. Our present body is compared to a tent, but our resurrection body will be like a high rise building.

Super powerful and you can't knock it down. We've got a lot to live for. We've got a lot to be excited about in the future.

Even though Bible prophecy does give some prophecies about bad things that will happen in the future, the future of Christians is awesome. If you understand these things, it'll put wind in your sails like few other things can. Ron Rhodes, thank you for all you do. and for the products we've talked about this particular hour or get on my newsletter list or give my office a call. I haven't used the saying here now, folks, for two, three months. And you know, I like to use it as often as I can. And it's appropriate to close with this.

Somebody sent it came on a card. When the time was right, the sea part of the walls fell down. The sun stood still.

The waves were calm. The stone was rolled away. The clouds were parted and the Lord ascended. And when the time is right, the King of Kings will return. God is never early. He's never late. He's always right on time. And His plan for you is good.

You know, He's not His eye on the sparrow, but He's got you engraved on the palm of His hands. And I want you to remember that as we go out of this program. I want to thank you for listening.

We'll talk to you again next week. If you can't be by a radio for understanding the Times radio, remember all programming is posted to our website in both its audio and video format. Just visit and go to our radio category. We welcome friendly feedback at That's Call us Central Time at 763-559-4444. That's 763-559-4444. We get our mail when you write to Jan Markell and Olive Tree Ministries, Box 1452, Maple Grove, Minnesota, 55311.

That's Box 1452, Maple Grove, Minnesota, 55311. All gifts are tax-deductible. Don't be discouraged by the tide of our times. God has it all under control. It was all foretold in the Bible, and everything is falling into place.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-12-10 19:00:31 / 2023-12-10 19:23:28 / 23

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