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I Dare You: Decide! Part 1 - Part B

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January 31, 2023 5:00 am

I Dare You: Decide! Part 1 - Part B

Connect with Skip Heitzig / Skip Heitzig

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January 31, 2023 5:00 am

Some people doubt that Jesus will return. But as we look at the incredible prophecies found in the book of Daniel, we find that He is waiting to return, and one day, He will come back. Join Skip as he shares the message "I Dare You: Decide! Part 1."

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Skip Heitzig

So we have a powerful ruler who's a prideful speaker and a painful oppressor.

The best news in this scenario is that he will be the principal loser, the ultimate loser. The Antichrist will have a brutal, painful rule, but he will be defeated in the end. Today on Connect with Skip Heitzel, Skip shows you what will happen at the end of the world. Then at the end of today's program, Skip and his wife, Lania, share why we can have hope in Christ as a result of what we read in Daniel about the end times. I remember my pastor always teaching me when it came to eschatology using the scriptures that as believers, though we know the Antichrist is coming, we know the man of sin will be revealed, we know that the world is going to go under some intense persecution and darkness.

He said as believers we are not looking for the Antichrist, we're looking for Jesus Christ. Now here's a pair of resources that can help you get the most out of your time in God's Word. Ready to upgrade your Bible study in 2023? We have a plan and a package for you. Skip Heitzel's book, The Bible from 30,000 Feet, is an ideal companion for a survey of the entire scope of scripture.

Here's a great goal for the coming year. Conduct a personal study of all 66 books as Skip Heitzel guides you from a biblical altitude of 30,000 feet. We want to give you firm direction to unlock the riches of God's Word by sending you two resources from Pastor Skip, How to Study the Bible and Enjoy It, and The Bible from 30,000 Feet.

You'll gain helpful Bible study tools as you practice how to observe, absorb, and interpret the Bible, then apply it to your life. These two resources are our thanks for your gift today of $50 or more. Skip has asked the team at Connection Communications to make it a priority in 2023 to take their daily messages as you have heard them today and expand them into more metropolitan areas.

Will you help us make that happen? And with your gift, you will receive copies of How to Study the Bible and Enjoy It and The Bible from 30,000 Feet. Both books by Skip Heitzel to kickstart your 2023 Bible study plans. Call 800-922-1888 or give online securely at connectwithskip.com slash offer.

That's connectwithskip.com slash offer. Okay, we're in Daniel 7 today as we join Skip for today's teaching. Now what the final form of this will be, I do not know and I'm not prepared to say definitively.

For years people guessed it was the European Economic Community, a revived Roman Empire, where the euro gets strong in 10 European nations. I'm going to suggest to you in a couple weeks that there is a system in place right now upon the earth that is growing so rapidly and so frighteningly that it fits the prophetic picture, I believe, better than anything else. It's very, very scary, but you're going to have to wait for a couple weeks to get that. And somebody will protest and say, come on, this is modern time.

The idea of a single world dictator in the midst of modern political structure, that's not going to happen. Well, hold that thought. Hold that thought.

You've got to hold it for two weeks, but hold that thought. He's going to be a powerful ruler, according to scripture. The second remarkable thing to note is he will be a prideful speaker.

Verse 8, verse 11, verse 20, and verse 25 describe this little horn coming up, not only with eyes, but with a mouth. It can speak. This ruler, I believe, will have incredible oratorical ability. He'll be very articulate. Revelation 13, describing the beast, said he was given a mouth speaking great things. He's going to communicate so effectively that he'll be able to bring peace in the Middle East. Now, just imagine that. That's been a jigsaw puzzle no one has been able to solve. He's going to be able to solve it. In Revelation chapter 6, you can just make a note of this.

Don't have to turn there. The Antichrist is described as the rider on the white horse. He's the first of the four horsemen of the apocalypse. We are told in that chapter, I saw a white horse and a rider on that horse who went out conquering and to conquer. Now, that is not Jesus Christ. That's the Antichrist. Jesus Christ is the rider on the white horse in Revelation chapter 19 that judges that present kingdom of the Antichrist and brings peace to the earth after that. The rider in chapter 6, we know it's not Jesus because he brings with him death, destruction, disease, and desperation, bloody carnage upon the earth. Go, yeah, but he's on a white horse. Remember the old westerns? Remember that bad guys were on the black horses, wore the black hats, the good guys on the white horses with the white hats? So if you were a really bad guy but you wanted to fake people out, you'd put on a white hat.

You'd get on a white horse. The Antichrist will be the ultimate wolf in sheep's clothing, and he will be very, very confident because it says he spoke pompous words, inflated words. Low self-esteem will not be his problem.

He will exude self-confidence. I heard about a guy from Texas who went to Niagara Falls. You know, everything's big in Texas. Everything's better in Texas. If you're a Texan, please, I'm not offending you. I'm a Californian, so there. This Texan went and saw Niagara Falls, and his host pointed out the beautiful falls, the magnificent. He said, you got anything that big in Texas?

The Texan said, nope, but we got plumbers who can fix that. Well, the Antichrist is going to come to fix that. He's going to fix all the bad stuff that has happened in the world, all the leaks in the world, and he will be able with his speech to persuade people. One commentator said he will have the oratorical skill of a John Kennedy, the inspirational power of a Winston Churchill, the determination of a Joseph Stalin, the vision of a Karl Marx, the respectability of a Mahatma Gandhi, the military prowess of a Douglas MacArthur, the charm of a Will Rogers, the genius of a King Solomon.

Imagine having all that wrapped up into one person, charming, disarming, clever, problem solver. But he's going to be dangerous because his enticing speech at some point in his career will turn to blasphemous speech. Look at verse 25 and just note, he shall speak pompous words against the most high.

This guy's going to have a mouth, and with all of his ability to schmooze and ability to persuade, at some point in his short career, he's going to turn on people and reveal who he really is. Revelation 13 tells us he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God to blaspheme his name, tabernacle, and those who dwell in heaven. That's probably going to happen in the middle of the tribulation period. You probably know the tribulation according to Daniel and Revelation will last seven years. The last half of the seven years, the last three and a half years is called the Great Tribulation.

What marks the difference between the first and second half is an event called the abomination of desolation. Jesus spoke about it, Daniel spoke about it. That's when the Antichrist, the world ruler, the little bighorn, the big mouth, announces to the world I want you to know that I am the one you should worship. I am the one who is your Lord and God. Paul the Apostle, 2 Thessalonians 2, speaking of him, said he will oppose and exalt himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped so that he sits as God in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God.

He'll be able to schmooze Arab and Jew and bring peace, will allow the Jews to have their temple, but eventually, eventually, he's going to want to worship. Who does that sound like? Could it be Satan? Remember that?

That's who it is. The devil is the one who said, I will be like the Most High. He wanted to be worshiped.

Still does. His agenda has never changed. The Antichrist will be his ambassador. The Antichrist will be his ambassador. So we have an interesting description of a powerful ruler who is a prideful speaker.

There's a third mark about him that is noteworthy. He will be a painful oppressor. Verse 21, I was watching, and the same horn was making war against the saints. That's what he's using the horn for, the power, the strength, is to make war against the saints, the saints prevailing against them.

And look at the 25th verse. He'll speak pompous words against the Most High, shall persecute the saints of the Most High and intend to change times and law. Once he succeeds in dominating the world, then the Holocaust begins. And in the last half of the seven-year period, it will be hell on earth.

It's the only way to describe it. Jesus said that time will be far worse than any other period of human history, and it will be horrific. The word in verse 25 for persecute speaks of the wearing out of a garment.

He's going to wear down the saints. He's going to continually harass them and wear them down, probably things like physical harassment, legal injustice, seizure of property, physical punishment, and failure to comply laws. Remember, the Antichrist is going to cause everyone to take some kind of a mark on their hand or forehead. If they don't, they will be seen as revolutionary and reactionary, and according to Scripture, they will be killed, Revelation chapter 13. So whatever peace he comes with will end, and he will make terrible war against God's people.

Again, Revelation 13, which is hand in hand with this chapter, in verse 7 and 8, the beast was allowed to wage war against God's holy people and to overcome them, and he was given authority to rule over every tribe and people and language and nation, and all the people who belong to this world worshiped the beast. He'll be a painful oppressor. Now, you might be wondering, well, what exactly will he do that will be so painful to God's people?

Well, let me give you just a high light, a low light. He's going to kill two-thirds of all Jews, Zechariah chapter 13. He's going to conquer the city of Jerusalem, Zechariah chapter 14. He will deceive the world and go on a rampage to kill believers around the earth, Revelation 13. But in all that I have read in Scripture about him, I don't believe he'll be a secularist.

I think he's going to be a very, very religious person because he has with him a false prophet described in the book of Revelation, a false prophet. That's the religious component of his reign and dominion. Not only that, but in Revelation 17, it describes a religious movement known as Mystery Babylon in its metaphorical language.

It is a religious system over which the Antichrist will be the head, and with all of his dominion and religious power, he's going to persecute any who are God's people on this earth. Jesus predicted this. He said in Matthew 24, then they will deliver you up to tribulation and kill you, and you will be hated by all nations for my name's sake. That's a promise Jesus made to his people, probably not a promise we like to underline. That promise was fulfilled in the early Roman Empire by guys like Caesar Nero or Diocletian or Domitian who killed Christians and destroyed Bibles and destroyed churches. But in the second phase of this Roman kingdom, it will happen in spades.

If there's any good news about all of this bad news, it's that the Antichrist won't last very long. Look at verse 25. Then the saints shall be given into his hand for a time, and times, and half a time. Sounds like an ancient reckoning of three and a half. Time, that's one. Times, that's two. Half a time, that's a half of one. All he has is three and a half years. Now, if you're going, yeah, but you know, it just says time, times, half a time. Doesn't say three and a half years. You're just sort of putting that in there.

No. Later on, in Daniel and Revelation, it gets more specific. It says 42 months, which happens to be three and a half years. It also says 1,260 days, if you want to be exact.

That's three and a half years. He's going to make a seven-year deal of peace. He's going to break the deal in the middle of that seven-year period, and he will in the middle of that seven-year period, and he will devastate the earth. He will go on a rampage of death and destruction. Jesus in Matthew 24, speaking of the tribulation, said something that I think fits in.

I think when you listen to it, you'll read it differently from here on out. Unless those days were shortened, no flesh would be saved, but for the elect's sake, those days will be shortened. In other words, God is only going to let it be confined to a three and a half year period, not very long in the scheme of the world history. I know if you're being persecuted or you're in pain, three and a half years seems like a lifetime, but God in His mercy is going to make it to be shortened.

It's predetermined. 1,260 days, 42 months, time, times, and a half a time. So we have a powerful ruler who's a prideful speaker and a painful oppressor.

The best news in this scenario is that He will be the principal loser, the ultimate loser. My favorite verse is verse 9, I watched till thrones were put in place. And the ancient of days, who would that be? God, God the Father, principally, was seated. His garment was white as snow. The hair of His head was like pure wool. His throne was a fiery flame. Its wheels a burning fire. A fiery stream issued and came forth from before Him.

All these are metaphors of judgment. A thousand thousands ministered to Him. Ten thousand times ten thousand stood before Him.

The court was seated. The books were opened. Then I watched because of the sound of the pompous words which the horn was speaking. I watched till the beast was slain and its body destroyed and given to the burning flame. As for the rest of the beast, they had their dominion taken away.

So Mr. Big Mouth has a little time and then he'll have eventually his mouth shut for good. Here's a picture of God the Father sitting on the throne of judgment. The thrones were seated or were put in place.

The ancient of days was seated. He is seen in purity and wisdom and authority. White robe, white hair, white robe, white hair on the throne.

By the way, we have the same depiction of Jesus Christ in Revelation chapter 1 with the same kind of imagery of white hair and white robe. But if you remember, Jesus said the Father has committed all judgment to the Son. And the fact that thrones, plural, are set up probably speaks of the Father and the Son united in judgment against this antichrist.

Verse 27, best part. Then the kingdom and dominion and the greatness of the kingdoms under the whole heaven shall be given to the people, the saints of the most high. That is these earthly kingdoms, these earthly dominions. His kingdom is an everlasting kingdom and all dominions shall serve and obey Him.

This is it. When these kingdoms run their course, Jesus' kingdom follows. That's the end of the world as we know it. Jesus brings in His kingdom, the first part is millennial, a thousand years of a remade earth. You'll be on this earth, remade, revitalized, perfect environment for a thousand years. After that, the kingdom is eternal. New heaven, new earth, the eternal state forever and ever. Now, when this happens, that's the time to pull out that old song we sing at Christmas, joy to the world, the Lord has come, let earth receive her King. You say, well, that's a Christmas song.

No, it's not. Isaac Watts wrote that in 1719, speaking about the second coming of Jesus Christ to the earth. As seen in this verse, as seen in this verse, He rules the world with truth and grace and makes the nations prove the glories of His righteousness and wonders of His love. I think I just might ask the Lord if we can sing that at that moment.

It'd be a lot of fun. I don't know what He'll say, but I might ask Him. Verse 28. Verse 28. I like the way He does this. This is the end of the account. As for me, Daniel, my thoughts greatly troubled me and my countenance changed, but I kept the matter in my heart.

Reminds me of that old Porky Pig cartoon. Remember how it ended? Today, today, today, that's all folks. That's it. That's what I saw.

That's what's going to happen. The world had a beginning and the world will have an end. Every kingdom that rises falls. Every single nation that comes has a shelf life.

If there is a theme of Daniel that is overriding, that's it. All the kingdoms of men come, but they go. And this world will end, but Jesus said, whoever believes in me will never die. Let's say today was the end of the world. How do you think newspapers and magazines would report that? Well, one suggests that the world will never die.

Well, one suggested it would be this way. USA Today would simply put, we're dead. The Wall Street Journal would say, Dow Jones plummets as the world ends.

Microsoft Systems Journal would say, Apple loses market share. Sports Illustrated would post on the cover, Game Over. Rolling Stone magazine would be the Grateful Dead reunion tour. Discover magazine would post, How will the extinction of all life as we know it affect the way in which we view the cosmos? TV Guide, Death and Damnation, Nielsen rating soar. Ladies Home Journal, lose 10 pounds by judgment day with our new Armageddon diet. AOL, America Online, system temporarily unavailable.

Call back in 15 minutes. Look at verse 10 as we close. The court was seated. The books were opened.

Isn't that just a frightful sounding event? The court was seated. This is God's court now. This is the one who knows and sees everything.

The court was seated. The books were opened. Revelation 20 says the same thing, and I saw the books were opened. Do you know that God keeps books on everybody?

You know what he's looking for? As the pages turn and he gets to your page, he's looking for a big canceled stamp across the page, canceled by the blood of Jesus Christ. I hope it's there. I hope that you're a follower of Christ and that your name is written in the Lamb's book of life, and so that on that judgment book, as it comes to your name, it says transgressions canceled by the blood of Christ. Because if it's not, there is enough evidence to convict all of us to go into eternal condemnation forever. And so the dare is to decide. You know, at some point in the future, in that tribulation period, the world is going to have to make a decision. And there will be a few who will be holdouts after the rapture, during the tribulation, for the Lord Jesus Christ, to the point of persecution and death, as this man goes on a rampage against all believers.

But we can and we should decide now. Now Jesus said, you're either for me or against me. If you're saying, well, you know, I'm never really against God.

I like coming to church every now and then. I'm not like against him, but I'm not going to be like totally for him. Jesus said, sorry, game's up, number's up, you're against me. If you're not for me, you're against me.

If you don't help gather, then you scatter. So he's the one that put that line in the sand and said, be for me, because if you're not, you're actually acting as my enemy. Good news, Jesus came to save his enemies.

Jesus came to forgive every one of us so that before the court is seated and the books are open, he can step up and go, father, father, that one's mine. That debt has been canceled. He, she belongs to me. That's the decision.

Always is the decision. And ultimately one day this world will decide, it's either Antichrist or it's Jesus Christ. That's Skip Heite with a message from the series, I Dare You. Find the full message as well as books, booklets, and full teaching series at connectwithskip.com. Now let's head into the studio with Skip and Lenya as they share how you can have hope in Christ as you prepare for the end times. Skip, today you talked about the Antichrist and what he will do when his full power is unleashed. This may cause fear in a lot of Christians. So what are some important truths we need to keep in mind to encourage us when thinking about the last days? Well, I remember my pastor always teaching me when it came to eschatology, using the scriptures, that as believers, though we know the Antichrist is coming, we know the man of sin will be revealed, we know that the world is going to go under some intense persecution and darkness. He said, as believers, we are not looking for the Antichrist, we're looking for Jesus Christ. Before the Antichrist could ever be revealed, Jesus will, I believe, return for his church. Now, barring that, let's just kind of be open to all the other eschatological viewpoints, and there are many.

Let's talk about the Antichrist, the Antichrist, the viewpoints, and there are many. Let's say that that won't happen and the Antichrist is going to come. Even then, we have no reason to be afraid. You know, the Bible says God hasn't given us the spirit of fear, but of power, love, and of a sound mind. I pray that scripture over a lot of people every week, and that's true for the believer. God will strengthen you through what you're going to face. Look how Jesus spoke about the persecution his disciples would go through in the coming years. They're going to bring you before the courts, they're going to beat you, they're going to think they're doing God a favor when they kill you. But, he says, you know, don't be afraid, don't fear, I'll be with you. So take these scriptures not as just little things to put on Hallmark cards, but to live your life by them. The other thing is, depending on your eschatology, I don't think I'll be around when the Antichrist is here. I believe in a pre-trib rapture, so the Jesus Christ thing, maybe there's some things just don't wear your little head about.

It's going to happen, but you might not have to be there to see it. Thank you, Skip and Lenya. We hope this conversation refreshed you spiritually. If you've been strengthened or encouraged, please consider helping keep Truth Like This on the air and online to refresh others with God's truth.

As you give, you'll help advance the vision to make these messages available to more people in more cities across our country. Just call 800-922-1888 to give. That's 800-922-1888, or visit connectwithskip.com slash donate. That's connectwithskip.com slash donate. Thank you. Come back tomorrow as Skip continues exploring the very real character of the Antichrist and how he'll fool the world into thinking he's a savior. Connect with Skip Hyton is a presentation of Connection Communications, connecting you to God's never-changing truth in ever-changing times.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-01-31 06:59:31 / 2023-01-31 07:09:29 / 10

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