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R627 Clues To His Coming Pt.2

Encouraging Word / Don Wilton
The Truth Network Radio
January 18, 2022 8:00 am

R627 Clues To His Coming Pt.2

Encouraging Word / Don Wilton

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January 18, 2022 8:00 am

The Daily Encouraging Word with Dr. Don Wilton

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God has an encouraging word for you and me today, through the Bible-based teaching of Dr. Don Wilton and today's message called, Clues to His Coming. Yes, Jesus is coming again. We just began this yesterday with Dr. Wilton, and today we continue in understanding not only the clues to the return of Jesus Christ, but how that affects us and the way that we act and react with our family, our friends. That's all coming up in just a moment, but Dr. Don wants you to know we're here for you as well. We'd love to pray with you anytime at 866-899-WORD. That's 866-899-9673. It's also the place to order great resources like the Share God's Truth Devotional. It's a blue leather-bound book that's a wonderful resource studying God's Word every day. You'll find that and many resources on our website, www.tewonline.org. Visit us today, www.tewonline.org.

And now, Dr. Don Wilton. Until He comes, I do not believe that there is a more pertinent subject that we could be studying together from the Word of God than these matters. And here in Matthew chapter 24, the disciples ask the Lord Jesus Christ three of the most pertinent questions that could ever be asked concerning eschatology.

That's a big word, I know. The word eschatology, roughly translated, just literally means the doctrine of last things. It answers questions about the second coming of the Lord Jesus Christ, about the signs of the times, what is going on these days. The world is marching according to God's plan, and these things are singularly significant. We're going to be looking at these things in the light of God's Word. What does Jesus have to say about himself? What can we know and what can we understand until he comes? Matthew chapter 24 is where we begin.

I'm going to read it to you again. Now, I want you to note the three questions. Number one, when will this happen? Number two, what will be the sign of your coming?

Number three, when will be the end of the age? Now, it's very important to note that. Now, the disciples didn't realize they were asking three different questions, and they certainly didn't understand what it was they were about to get into, but Jesus did. Look what he said in verse four.

Jesus answered, Watch out that no one deceives you, for many will come in my name claiming I am the Christ and will deceive many. You will hear wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. Nation will rise against nation and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places.

All these are the beginning of birth pains. Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you'll be hated by all nations because of me. At that time, many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other, and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people because of the increase of wickedness. The love of most will grow cold, but he who stands firm to the end will be saved, and this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.

And so, when you see the standing in the holy place, the abomination that causes desolation as spoken of by the prophet Daniel, let the reader understand. Then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. Let no one on the roof of his house go down to take anything out of the house. Let no one in the field go back to get his cloak.

How dreadful it will be in those days for pregnant women and nursing mothers. Pray that your flat will not take place in the winter or on the Sabbath, for then there will be great distress, unequaled from the beginning of the world until now, and never to be equaled again. May the Lord write this word on his heart. Jesus was talking to his disciples. A rather fascinating and interesting dialogue begins to take place here in Matthew 24, not in isolation because we need to understand what happened in Matthew chapter 23, and we're going to be touching back and all over Scripture as we begin to try to understand what Jesus is telling us and teaching us until he comes again. But what Jesus was doing, and I want you to understand this, Jesus here with his disciples, recognizing as the Son of God that the world, people like you and me, are going to be confronted by the reality of these issues. They are critical, and Jesus begins to speak to his disciples, and by the Spirit of God and the authority of Almighty God, they are recorded for us in his word, this holy inspired word of God, so that we too may try to somewhat understand these things until Jesus comes. Jesus looking around basically in a sense tells his disciples that before you can even begin to understand these enormous truths about the end times, you need to look to four things.

Last week I mentioned the first one, and I want to just give it to you briefly again. Jesus said, first of all, if you want to understand the end times, you want to understand the clues to my coming, you want to understand who the Messiah is and what his purpose is. If you want to understand how the world's going to come to an end, number one, you need to look to the Jews.

Now that's a profound statement. First of all, we know the disciples were Jews. We know that Jesus was a Jew. They understood the Jewish mindset. Jesus was saying, listen, Jewish disciples who have met the Messiah, I want you to begin this journey of understanding these things by looking to your own people.

Now I want to just make an announcement here today. I believe, my friends, amongst many other things, that what Jesus was saying back here in the New Testament is as relevant then as it is today. That Jesus was warning those of us who are believers. He was advising the world to take special note of his children, the children of Israel.

They do have a very special place in the heart of God. I'm not going to get into this today, but I am going to say to you that what happens in Israel is very, very important. What's happening to the Jewish people is very important in terms of the fulfillment of prophecy and in terms of what Jesus was teaching us with regard to the end of the age.

Jesus was saying, take note of the Jewish people. These Jewish people in Jesus' day were enslaved. They were bound by the Roman oppressors and they were tired of it. They wanted to be liberated.

Not only did they want to be liberated, but these people were very religious folks from when they were two bricks and a tiki high. Little Jewish people could quote the Old Testament. I mean, they grew up studying their scripture.

They understood what it meant to be religious. Even today, you can go to Israel on Shabbat or the Sabbath day. Nobody goes for a walk, not even the local dog, if you're an Orthodox Jew. The Sabbath day is set apart as a holy day. It is religious to its highest degree.

You can come with me to Jerusalem. You won't even find an elevator that's working. They're all set on automatic.

Why? Because even to push the button of an elevator is considered working. It is a defilement of their Jewish understanding in connection with their rituals and their rights related to their Jewish faith and their religion. These people understood these things. They had studied the scriptures. They knew what Isaiah said and Jeremiah and Ezekiel. They were astute theological students, but they did not understand who the Messiah is. They were looking for a deliverer. I gave you nine basic beliefs.

I'm going to just run through them. Number one, they believed that Jesus' coming would be preceded by a time of tribulation. Number two, the Jews believed that a forerunner would appear to announce his coming. John the Baptist came. Number three, they believed that a Messiah would appear in person.

Now watch me now, folks. The Jews actually believed that a Messiah would appear in person. No wonder they were so pumped up and excited when Jesus came on the scene, but very shortly thereafter they couldn't understand it because there was something missing.

He didn't have a sword in his hand. He turned the other cheek. You know what the Jews wanted to do? They said, listen, we want a Messiah who's not going to turn the other cheek.

We want a Messiah who's going to brandish a sword and who's going to win back our respect and who's going to chase all these Roman oppressors out of our land and who are going to deliver us and give us back our freedom. Number four, they believed that nations would rise up against the Messiah. Number five, they believed that these nations would be destroyed. The Jews did.

Jesus said, you just think about the Jews. Number six, they believed that Jerusalem would be restored. Number seven, they believed that the Jews would come back together again. They believed that. How did they believe that? Because the Old Testament says so. They believed in the eighth place that Palestine would become the center of the world.

Well, look at it today. Number nine, they believed that a new age of peace would result. Well, the Bible tells us about a new heaven and a new earth. Folks, what I've just given to you is a Jew or a Jewish chronology of events pertaining to the end of the age. Jesus said, you've got to understand the Jewish mindset. You've got to understand the Old Testament.

But there is something missing and that is who Jesus Christ is. You remember how the Lord Jesus turned to his disciples at one time and he said, gentlemen, who do people say that I am? Well, they looked at each other and they said, well, Lord, you know, some people say that you're Elijah. Another disciple said, oh, Lord, I've heard people say that you're Moses. Why Moses?

Because Moses delivered the children of Israel from bondage. I've got no doubt. Some of them might have said, well, he's Samson.

He's going to be strong. Other people said, well, you so and so. And then Jesus looked at them and he said, but who do you say that I am? And Peter said, thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God. Ladies and gentlemen, may I present to you the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of the living God, the Savior of the world, the one who has come to set us free, the one by whose authority you and I can have forgiveness of sin.

When our sin is forgiven, it is cast as far as the east is from the west and it is remembered no more. May I present to you the Lamb of God slain from before the foundation of the world. May I present to you the one who is God, the King of kings and the Lord of lords.

May I present to you God himself, God incarnate, the one who loves us beyond anything that you and I could ever begin to imagine. Jesus said, listen, gentlemen, you want to understand these things about the nations and about the euro and about all the other things going on in your day and age. Number one, look to the Jews. Number two, look to the disciples. Look to the disciples. Now, this was rather interesting, folks, because this whole conversation here in Matthew 24 takes place in the context of a dialogue and more importantly, a monologue between the Lord Jesus Christ and his 12 disciples. There were just 12 men there and Jesus was talking to them. They were, first of all, spending the last week of Jesus' life upon this earth right there at the temple mound. They had been with him through his earthly ministry. They had become deeply impressed by all that had gone on and what Jesus was saying is, listen, you want to understand eschatology, you want to understand the things pertaining to the end of the age, look to the disciples. Now, why would he have done that?

Well, I'm going to suggest to you three reasons. Number one, because they listened. That's the first reason why Jesus placed such an emphasis on the disciples, because they listened. Let me tell you something, folks, the disciples were all ears. They listened.

They listened to what Jesus was saying and I think that what Jesus was doing when he spoke to the disciples, he was putting right there into the most incredible pillar of truth. He was trying to tell us that the single most important thing we can do when it comes to these issues is that we listen. Please forgive the interruption.

We'll be back in just a moment. But perhaps you've been listening and all of a sudden caught up in this wonderful two-part series, Clues to His Coming, and you're wondering, what about the first part? You could hear it on demand right now at our website, tewonline.org. Both the audio messages we're streaming online, connecting on radio, as well as sharing on television, all those resources from Dr. Don Wilton are available right now at tewonline.org.

Now back to today's great teaching with Dr. Don Wilton. Jesus never, ever says in the Word of God, I want you to know that I'm never going to be happy with you until you understand everything. Folks, now I want you to listen. This is what faith is all about. Faith does not necessarily understand. Faith is willing to listen and believe.

Now I'm going to make a surprising statement to you today. Would any of you be shocked if I told you that there's probably at least one person right now who's not listening? I don't know how many people are worshiping with us today, probably four or five hundred thousand people.

I'll guarantee there's at least one out of three, four, five hundred thousand people that's not listening right now. You see, folks, what Jesus was saying when he had this interaction with the disciples, he was saying to them, I want you, ladies and gentlemen, throughout the ages, to begin where you need to begin, not only look and study the Jews and the Jewish people, but I want you to listen. That's what the disciples did. Boy, they listened. Jesus talked.

I can see them walking down those highways and byways with all the dust flying in their sandals. And Jesus was teaching them. How many times did the disciples just gather around the feet of the Lord Jesus as he taught them? And folks, they listened. Jesus didn't always call for understanding. He didn't always call for them to respond. He just said to them, listen, do you know that listening is one of the greatest spiritual activities? Do you know that one of the things we have most problems with is just this little thing called listening?

Because we're living in a day and age today where we can't listen anymore. There's too much going on. We've got lunch coming up. We've got ball games going on. We've got school reconvening tomorrow.

We've got snow and ice. We've got decisions to make. Jesus was saying, listen, look to these disciples. But there was a second reason, perhaps, why we need to look at the disciples. They not only listened but they saw. They were not only all ears but they were all eyes. They opened their eyes and they looked around. I can just imagine those disciples in their boat on the Sea of Galilee and a storm comes up and panic sets in. And they're so nervous, eventually they get to the stage of ultimate panic and they look around and what's Jesus doing? Taking a nap.

I ask you. And these men are beside themselves. They know they've had it. Their boat's going to wreck.

It cannot withstand these waves. And finally, one of them convinces one of the others, wake him up. And they woke him up. And I can just see, if you'll beg my pardon, the Lord Jesus Christ wiping the sleep from his eyes and standing up and looking around. And then standing on the bow of that boat and saying, peace be still. And the Bible tells us that even the winds and the waves obeyed his voice.

Now, friends, I want to tell you something today. I don't believe that the disciples just listened to what he said. They saw.

They were witnesses. I want you to listen carefully today, folks, because Jesus is going to begin with the temple. And if we don't understand the things that Jesus is telling us in terms of what we need to listen to, but not what we just need to listen to, what we have the ability to see with our own eyes. Jesus was saying, you want to understand the answers to these questions. You must not only listen, but you must open your eyes and look around you because there is evidence everywhere possible until I come again. Jesus said, I'm going to show you these things.

I'm going to provide you with practical evidence. I want you to open your eyes. But there's a third thing about the disciples they hoped. You see, someone who listens and someone who sees is someone who has hope. They were not only all ears and all eyes, but the disciples were all heart. Not once does Jesus talk about their level of understanding, but he does talk about the quality of their ears and their eyes and their heart. Jesus points down to that deep value within the heart and soul of every person who is visited upon by the Spirit of God. When God draws us to himself and he says, whosoever believes in him shall not perish.

That word believe, pisteo in the Greek means whosoever places faith in him, whosoever hopes in him, accepts him at his word, shall have everlasting life. Look to the disciples. There was a third thing that Jesus wanted us to do. He wanted us to look at the temple.

Now you need to stick closely with me here, folks. Number one, look at the Jews. Number two, look at the disciples. And here's Jesus trying to help these disciples and us to understand what's going on. He says, number three, I want you to look at the temple. Well, why did Jesus begin with the temple?

Well, it was interesting why he did that. Here were the disciples, grown up on the shores of Galilee. They were fishermen. They'd never been to the big city. They're standing in awe of these buildings. Mark's gospel said that the disciples stood there looking and saying, wow, wow, wow, look at the skyscraper, this magnificent monument to the brilliance of humanity. What an engineering feat.

Lord, we've never seen anything like this. Jesus, who understood the heart of man, began right there in the understanding of the heart of man. Why did Jesus look to the temple? I think there are a number of reasons why Jesus said look to the temple.

Let me give them to you. Number one, perhaps because he needed to answer their question. That's a good reason, isn't it? I mean, the disciples were the ones who called his attention to the building said, Lord, look at these buildings. What about them? They didn't know what they were asking. But when Jesus pointed to the temple in this eschatological dialogue, he began with the temple.

Why? Perhaps to answer their question. Number two, perhaps to get their attention. Don't you think? You see, that temple standing there was something that they could see, they could feel, they had been a part of it. And now Jesus was about to say something radical. That's like me standing in the twin towers there in New York City and somebody walking up to me in 1999 and saying to me, Don, I want you to know that there's going to come a time in September of 2001 that these towers are going to come crashing down and there's going to be great tragedy and weeping.

There's going to be smoke all over the city and it's going to reverberate and ricochet all around the world. You got my attention, folks. But Jesus was not just trying to get their attention in terms of what he was saying. Jesus was trying to get their intention in terms of what was going to happen.

I'm going to listen. I want to make an announcement to every atheist and every agnostic and every member of every cult and every person who denies the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. I want to tell you something, my friend, that there are many things in this world that are irrefutable evidence as far as God is concerned. And when God began this eschatological diatribe, he appointed for something that was going to become irrefutable evidence in the chronological unfolding of the timeline of God's disposition until he comes. The disciples didn't know that. They didn't know that 40 years from then that Jerusalem would be flat on its back. The disciples didn't know that in AD 70 the Romans would come in and would raise the temple to the ground.

But I can tell you that historians from that day until this day have got irrefutable evidence right way back there at the beginning concerning the things of God and the truth of who God is. Maybe to answer their question, maybe to get their attention. Number three, maybe to illustrate the impossible.

Why? Because these things are impossible. Maybe what Jesus was trying to say is I'm going to tell you something impossible, but I'm going to show you that with God, nothing's impossible. See, folks, when we talk about Antichrist and tribulations and nations rising against nations and one European economies and a cashless society and all these things. Listen, folks, you talk to people 10, 15, 20 years ago about computers. They say to you, it's impossible.

You talk about a cashless economy. People would say it's impossible. Maybe he was trying to tell them something to illustrate the impossible. Number four, perhaps to establish a chronology of events. Jesus was beginning a timeline. Jesus was about to give his life and Jesus began where the disciples were at. They were about to witness his death upon the cross, but he had to establish a chronology of events. And then there's one other possible reason why Jesus pointed to the temple. It was perhaps to show what happens when the spirit of the Lord is removed from his house. Perhaps Jesus was trying to show them what happens.

Now to know that that is true, you go back into chapter 23. Look at verse 38. Matthew chapter 23 and verse 38. Jesus said, look, your house is left to you desolate. What was Jesus saying?

You see, friend, end times is about the removal of the spirit of God from upon this earth. What a wonderful day of teaching and preaching from Dr. Don Wilton here on The Encouraging Word. It's our prayer that you've not heard just Dr. Don, but you've heard the Lord calling out to you, letting you know he loves you, he has a plan for your life.

And as you've listened to Dr. Don preaching, I pray you'd open your heart to what he wants to share next. Are you ready to give your heart and life to the Lord Jesus Christ? Why don't you pray this prayer with me right now? Dear God, I know that I'm a sinner, and I know that Jesus died for me on the cross. Today I repent of my sin, and by faith I receive you into my heart. In Jesus' name. My friend, I welcome you today into the family of God.

This is exciting news. that will help fuel your growth here in 2022. As a matter of fact, we have other opportunities to view your growth as well. It all begins with God. Journey with Dr. Wilton as he takes you back to the beginning. Genesis' Back to the Beginning message, plus the bonus book, The Origin of Everything, will help you come face to face with some very foundational faith issues.

You will also find answers to foundational questions about who you are and why you are here. This is a must-have gift to purchase for yourself, a friend, or loved one, including your child or grandchildren, to help them know truth when the enemy attacks. Call us at 866-899-WORD. That's 866-899-9673 to request the life-changing message, Genesis, Back to the Beginning, and the bonus book with your gift of $25 or more per set. Thank you for supporting The Encouraging Word as we continue to proclaim the life-changing gospel of Jesus Christ to the world.

Now that's just one of many resources. Dr. Don's son, Greg, wrote that book, but Dr. Don has also written a book that was released this past year that if you don't have yet, you need to consider getting, called Saturdays with Billy. It was written about the Saturdays, every Saturday, that Dr. Wilton spent with Dr. Billy Graham over the course of about 20 years as he was pastoring the nation's pastor. Again, it's a wonderful book. You'll find it wherever books are sold, but also on our website at www.tewonline.org. That's www.tewonline.org. Let's connect!
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-06-22 19:47:31 / 2023-06-22 19:58:07 / 11

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