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First Glimpses of the Last Days, Part 1

Insight for Living / Chuck Swindoll
The Truth Network Radio
October 8, 2021 7:05 am

First Glimpses of the Last Days, Part 1

Insight for Living / Chuck Swindoll

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Insight for Living
Chuck Swindoll
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Today from Chuck Swindoll on Insight for living. Something deep belongs to know what lies beyond this point will it be like on this earth in the future but will remain as it is, what will change those kind of thoughts of those questions not only run through our minds, but they were in the minds of the disciples of Jesus and no better teacher ever live, the son of God himself, when the end of time is we will hear about wars and rumors of war added. You should expect earthquakes and famines. Many parts of the world does not sound familiar today on Insight for living. Chuck Swindoll continues his brand-new study through the gospel according to Matthew. As we step into the 24th chapter we read about Jesus giving a sneak preview of the end times while he seated on the Mount of olives overlooking Jerusalem appropriately. Chuck titled today's message first glimpses of the last day we entered today into an interesting subject. In our study of Matthew's gospel we come to what is known as the Olivet discourse discourse is a teaching session and Olivet is from the name of the amount on which Jesus spoke these words when you travel to Israel.

A big part of your journey is around in Jerusalem around the Mount of olives.

It was there where Jesus met with his own for that last gathering to pray at the garden of Gethsemane garden of Gethsemane.

That's at the Mount of olives. It is at that same mountain. Jesus sits with his disciples and reviews things to come things that are future to us as well as of course future to those who are living in in that first century. So this is a prophetic section of Scripture which always attracts the attention of people because we are fascinated by prophecy interesting as we work our way through 2425. These two chapters will will see similarities to our own day, which causes some people to say and think we are now living out the things that Jesus spoke were not the fact is that these are just a precursor.

These are brief and rather small examples of what will take the world by storm in the future. As will as will hear today we given in Matthew 24 today and we continue in the middle of the chapter this next time together.

But first we look at 24, 114 this morning, you brought your Bible. Make sure you have found it on reading from the new living translation because it's a little easier to understand if you're not familiar with your Bible and it is of course based on the scholarly work of many who spent years preparing it. Matthew 24 one through 14, as Jesus was leaving the temple grounds his disciples pointed out to him the various temple buildings, but he responded. Do you see all these buildings I tell you the truth, they will be completely demolished not one stone will be left on top of another leader. Jesus sat on the Mount of olives, his disciples came to him privately and said tells when will all this happened, what sign will signal your return and the end of the world.

Jesus told him, don't let anyone mislead you. For many will come in my name, claiming, I am the Messiah, they will deceive many. And you will hear of wars and threats are or rumors of wars, but don't panic. Yes, these things must take place, but the end it won't follow immediately. Nation will go to war against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in many parts of the world. But all this is only the first of the birth pains with more to come. Then you will be arrested, persecuted and killed. You will be hated all over the world because you are my followers, and many will turn away from me and betray and hate each other, and many false prophets will appear and will deceive many people send will be rampant everywhere in the love of many will grow cold, but the one who endures to the end will be saved in the gospel and the good news about the kingdom will be preached throughout the whole world so that all nation's will hear it and then the end will come. Study the book of Matthew Chuck Swindoll. Be sure to download his searching the Scriptures by going to Insight another message from Chuck titled first glimpses of the last days, something absolutely magnetic about prophecy. I can't fully explain it, but we seem to never lose our fascination over things to come. It's always been true goes all the way back in time and I'm sure will be true long after work on the ability to think about and with some sense of intelligence sort of map out what lies ahead. Not not sitting dates were were never to do that, not even Jesus did that but to sort of unfold the great events that lie ahead, we will want to know about when I got out of seminary. I was 27 years young and had the privilege of my life to assist Dr. J. Dwight Pentecost, who was not only the chair of the Bible exposition department and it taught me during my four years at school, but also was the senior pastor of Grace Bible church. The church was sudden not imposing large structure but rather small, and even though Dr. Pentecost is outstanding preacher. It was not usually full, but this man, who was known even at that time as a prophetic scholar.

He never liked that title but it was true. He had made a lifetime study of the prophetic Scriptures.

He announced on one occasion that coming up he would be doing a series of biblical messages on the major themes of the future. The themes of prophecy. He would be bringing them on Sunday evening.

I understand that's not everyone's favorite time to be a church and the building itself was was never anywhere near full on Sunday evenings until he made that announcement and that evening that first evening a couple of weeks later, long before the service began. It was packed.

There was standing room only. I know because I was among the standing group in the back watching all of this occur as he unfolded the beginning of 16 messages which were later put into a book titled prophecy for today. Excellent book on the future things I talked to Dr. Pentecost about that later. And I said to him you. It's amazing I think you have a now set for Tuesday evening and that is still been the place was still living alone he said actually Chuck, I think you're probably right, and he said I'm not thrilled with that. When I travel and I speak of is that I choose a subject like loving and serving Christ that may be a moderate group of people who will, or I'll talk about the importance of the church when I'm on the road that there will be that many but he said believe me when I announce that I'm going to talk about the next event in the future or the antichrist, the coming world dictator or the Armageddon campaign or the great white throne judgment place is packed illustrating again how we are fascinated by such subjects.

Something deep within us longs to know what lies beyond this football would be like on this earth in the future but will remain as it is, what will train those kind of thoughts of those questions not only run through our minds, but they were in the minds of the of the disciples of Jesus and no better teacher ever lived in, the son of God himself so they had the choice moment of their lives to talk to him about that. In fact, we read in verse one of chapter 24 of Matthew as Jesus is leaving the temple grounds so we know right away he's in the city of Jerusalem. The temple is Herod's Temple, a magnificent structure made of massive stones that were hand chiseled and fitted into place by the slaves of that day when it was built and it stood multi-stories high with great Collins at very impressive building that even at that time the disciples were caught up with and they referred to the buildings and no doubt the beauty of them and mentioning various buildings as they as appeared as they walked by, and that prompted Jesus to say verse two you see all these buildings I tell you the truth, they will become. They will be completely demolished not one stone will be left on top of another. When you travel in Jerusalem and you see the stones as the temple is been rebuilt and much of that stonework has been put put back in the place you see the size. Some of them weighing well over 100 times each, and to think that those stones would be broken, demolished, moved aside so that one now standing on another will no longer be there. You can your gigabit boggles the mind to think of such destruction, not just to set the record straight. That statement doesn't referred to the distant future, but it certainly did refer to things future from the disciples in 70 A.D. that is 8070 when the Romans invaded Jerusalem, they destroyed the temple, and in fact, that's exactly what happened to their beloved temple, he, they destroyed Jerusalem, they tore up the temple and they plundered the area and took many of the people captive but that's A.D. 70 that's not the distant future as the rest of the chapter refers to because Jesus has much more to say about the future. He reserves that for a little later on in the conversation is matter-of-fact, no doubt what he says to them here in verses wanted to. He now amplifies what he gets to verse four, but would look first in verse three. Later Jesus sat on the Mount of olives. When you travel to Israel and you end are in Jerusalem and you will see and will often be on the mountain so it is a low sloping western side that goes up to its peak of the drops over to the eastern slope.

The little town or village of Bethany is on the eastern slope about 2 miles from the city of Jerusalem, but the mouth stands between Jerusalem and what was then the little village of Bethany worries going. We know that according to what Matthew 26 tells us will will not go there.

But that's he's on his way there and they're going to walk up the slope and been done but on the way up that slope he realizes there are some things I need to teach these men whose curiosity is Pete by the question regarding the temple itself. So we read in verse three he sat on the Mount of olives in those days all teachers set to teach. They didn't stand as we do today when we teach. He sat down on the slope. No doubt the Western slope of the of the amount his disciples came to him and they privately asked two questions these two questions prompt the rest of this chapter and all of chapter 25: as I mentioned earlier, the Olivet discourse. In fact, the answer to these questions is the longest answer given in all the New Testament to any question.

Look at what they asked one is a question regarding time. The other is a question regarding events. The time question verse three is disciples came to him privately and they asked tell us when will all this happened.

The word Quinn is a time question. I'm sure they would've loved to know even dates, but they wanted to know the general time in which it would occur referring to things of the future and now they asked even beyond that, about the events. What will be the sign that will signal your return and the end of the world. When that question Ian's his answer begins.

If you carry a red letter edition of the Bible.

The rest of chapter 24 is read all of chapter 25 is red except for one little comment that Matthew adds until all the way through to the end soap 2425 the Olivet discourse.

What Jesus lays out before them is a survey of the events that will take place that lead to the end of the earth as we know it today. I need to insert something here because I know as soon as I get into this. Some of you are going to be concerned about how you will endure such things as this, let me reassure you that if you come to know Christ. You will not go through any of this.

It is all future to our day, but it is all beyond the rapture of the church.

I'm convinced Scripture teaches that the next event of the future for us will be fulfilled in the words of Paul to the Thessalonians. The Lord himself will be sent from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel of the trumpet of God and the dead in Christ shall rise first. Then we who are alive. That's the believers will be caught up together with them. Those who have been believers who have died, my mother and dad. No doubt your mother and dad loved ones who love Christ who died they will rise first. We will rise with them if were alive at the time with them. There will be a great family reunion in the air and we will be forever with the Lord now think obviously there will be the majority of people remaining on this earth who will not be taken up. They are unbelievers because he takes up all of the believers. That's when the Holy Spirit removes his restraining power. That's when the emphasis of the church and the influence of good from churches all over the world would be taken away and the earth will turn into the words of a mentor of mine are hell on earth. It will be such devastation such misery as the mind can hardly imagine I will not exaggerate and I will not pull on any kind of imagination. I will go on the words of what Jesus teaches, I will not send any dates because no dates or ever provided. I will simply say you and I are rescued from it. Taken off the earth and those who remain will go through this period of tribulation, and ultimately great tribulation, devastating time. So not only will the disciples not go through these things. We will not either. Nevertheless, they will occur. Now back to the discourse itself, which begins in verse four he gives six specific signs in answer to the question whether what you wonder about the when question the only time he answers that is later on in the discourse. He says no one knows the time when this will occur. No one knows the date that's in the father's control that's under his sovereign care so he doesn't set a date and let me warn you steer clear of any teacher who sets dates stay away from those who get a crowd by naming dates, giving you specific eras in which it will occur.

I've seen people do that and leave the meeting with egg on their face when it didn't happen as a result of that time arriving and then they will do a little semantic footwork and say actually it's going to be five years from now.

I didn't think were quite right. Five years later did still the nap so don't don't don't set date don't go there, but the events we can count as they are specifically described even described by Jesus. So what will be the signs I want to suggest the six that appear in verses four through 14 here we go. I'm giving you an outline if you wish to write them down.

That's fine if you don't that's okay to. But I give them to you. One by one as we work our way through by the way he uses an interesting word picture for all of this he uses it in verse eight in all, this is only the first of the birth pains with more to come see those words birth pains. There isn't a mother reading those words, you doesn't understand that it we call them labor pains they don't come at the beginning of a pregnancy they don't come in the middle they come toward the end where the birth of the child is about to occur, the labor intensified. So he's describing the events that will occur when we get near the end of that time so these are birth pain signs that will be going over number one versus four and five.

Don't let anyone mislead you.

For many will come in my name, claiming, I am the Messiah, they will deceive many. Such a writing them down. The first sign you can write is widespread deception by a growing number of false Christ widespread deception by a growing number of people who claim to be muscling the deception in those days yet future will intensify and will escalate as never before since the Holy Spirit will have withdrawn his presence, and the restraining power that he had provided will be removed.

This earth will break into Brenda's difficulties of all manner and of all sizes. So when these false Messiah show up with their phony messages that will be believed by many because many going through this will be longing for someone who is aunt will be widespread deception. So many voice speaking into current events.

It's difficult to know to believe in our study in Matthew 24 reinforces the conviction that God's word is the final authority you're listening to Insight for living with her Bible teacher, pastor and author Chuck Swindoll. He titled today's message first glimpses of the last days and to learn more about Chuck in this ministry.

Please visit us and then to help you conduct your own personal investigation of the truth.

Insight for living provides a number of helpful tools, each 1.22 the Bible and to the cross of Christ today, I'm pleased to offer a devotional book check is written for you is titled God's word for you. The subtitle is an invitation to find the nourishment your soul needs this little book is perfect for those who are just beginning their lifelong journey of studying God's word or for those who hope to rekindle their daily devotional times with Christ. You can purchase a copy by going to or call us if you listening in the US dial 1-800-772-8880 and Melanie close are we together by sending a big thank you to all those who financially support insight for living. Your generosity is truly making a difference in pursuit of an audacious God sized dream that is to bring Chuck's Bible teaching to 195 countries of the world.

We refer to this mission is vision 195 joined the team give a donation right now Collis listening in the US dial 1-800-772-8880 or give online insight or the don't forget you're invited to join us online for the Sunday morning worship service stone briar Community Church. In addition to hearing Chuck Swindoll's sermon will also participate in the congregational singing find all the instructions for streaming. The live worship service the 19th inviting you to join us again Monday. Chuck Swindoll continues our study in the book of Matthew on insight for living. The preceding message first glimpses of the last day was copyrighted in 2017 and 2021 and the sound recording was copyrighted in 2021 by Charles R. Swindoll. All rights are reserved worldwide. Duplication of copyrighted material for commercial use is strictly prohibited

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