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Every gift counts and now every gift is doubled. trainaposter.com This podcast is starting in just a few seconds. Enjoy it, share it, but most of all, thank you for listening and for choosing the Truth Podcast Network. Well, they asked the Lord about it in Luke 21, verses 7-19, and we're tackling those verses. We're getting into the return of Jesus this time, this week, on Experienced Truth. I'm Stu Eberstein, your host.
Robbie Dilmore is with me. It's always good to have the Christian car guy, the legend himself, in the hot seat. Robbie, read the Scripture for us, and we're going to jump right into these questions, okay? All right, Luke 21, 7-9. So they ask him, Teacher, but when will all these things be and what sign will there be when these things are about to take place? And he said, Take heed that you not be deceived, for many will come in my name, saying, I am he, and the time is drawn near.
Therefore, do not go after them. But when you hear of wars and commotions, do not be terrified, for these things must come to pass first. But the end will not come immediately. Then he said to them, Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and there will be great earthquakes in various places, and famines and pestilences. And there will be fearful signs and great signs from heaven. But before all these things, they will lay their hands on you and persecute you, delivering you up to the synagogues and prisons. You will be brought before kings and rulers for my name's sake, but it will turn out for you as an occasion for testimony. Therefore, settle in your hearts not to meditate beforehand on what you will answer, for I will give you a mouth and wisdom which all your adversaries will not be able to contradict or resist. You will be betrayed, even by parents and brothers and relatives and friends, and they will put some of you to death. And you'll be hated by all for my name's sake. But not a hair on your head shall be lost. By your patience, possess your souls." That's the Word of God.
Powerful. Robbie, read the first question. We're going to jump right into this. So, context. What's going on in Luke's Gospel that you would be led to this discussion in the last day? Well, that's a great question, and if you read Luke's Gospel, if you've journeyed with us on this awesome journey through the Gospel of Luke, the longest book, by the way, in the New Testament, nearly one-fifth of all of the Bible deals with the last days and the second return of Christ. There are giant chunks, giant passages like Matthew 24 and Mark 13 that deal with the end times, and I encourage you to check those passages out up and against what we're studying here in Luke chapter 24. We could spend so much time on this. We're just going to go verse by verse, maybe touch on it more a little bit next time.
But you've got to see the context. It's Wednesday of Holy Week. Christ has moved from his teaching in the temple during the day to teaching and spending time in prayer with the disciples in the evenings in the Mount of Olives. This scripture is considered his famous Olivet Discourse, where he is literally intimately... His disciples are like, Lord, when's this all going to happen? You're talking about a king and a kingdom and coming back, and you're also talking about us facing some pretty tough times. How is this all going to happen?
When's it going to happen? They've seen him come in mightily in Jerusalem on that donkey as the king coming in to bring peace, not a sword. They've seen him stand down, the Herodians and the Sadducees and the Pharisees. They've seen him go toe-to-toe with the greatest religious minds on the planet in God's capital of God's city, the holy city of Jerusalem, the city of peace. They've also seen him say, hey, this temple is going to go down. They've heard him talk about all this, his whole ministry, not just here in Holy Week. A lot has precipitated these disciples' questions, so they want to know when. They're going to ask the same thing, by the way, after his resurrection, when we get into the book of Acts. They say, when are you coming into your kingdom?
When is all this going to happen? Jesus says, it's not for you to know the times and seasons, but you will receive power. Some of these things, by the way, happened right away in Acts because the disciples were actually arrested in Acts chapter 4. After these great miracles, after 5,000 folks got saved, boom! These same people that were combated with Jesus in his final week of life, that tried him, that mercilessly had him murdered and crucified, they would be on the attack against the disciples there early in the book of Acts.
Man, it gets rough. So Robbie, great question. That's what's going on. And here's a good question here that follows that up, and really related to the temple. Because when the greatest religious place of worship in the world is the temple, read this question here and let's jump in. So why would the disciples want to know when the temple would be destroyed?
And that's the question. When will these things be, and what sign will there be when these things are about to take place? And Jesus says, take heed that you do not be deceived. Verse 8, For many will come in my name, saying, I am he. The time is drawn near.
Therefore do not go after them. Which is fascinating because at the temple is where all these rising religious false prophets and others would come to make their claim, to claim their stake on truth, to say, I'm the Messiah, I'm the Messiah. So here Jesus Christ is in the temple, in Solomon's colony and other places, preaching and sharing and talking about the end times and saying that this temple will be destroyed.
Not one stone will be left uncovered. So naturally, they want to know when this is going to happen. And of course, we know it's going to happen in AD 70 and Christ's prophecy will be fulfilled then. But we also know there's some more apocalyptic destruction coming, which the book of Revelation talks about. So it's really a twofold thing because we know Christ in His first coming came to bring salvation. But in His second coming, He's coming to bring judgment. So here we go, whenever there's judgment, there's a lot of bad people that come in under the guise of goodness.
And here's that question. So why would such a large proliferation of false prophets come in the last days? And this is the call Jesus says, do not be deceived.
And one of the signs that we're getting closer to the end times is all the deception. And so you have, what did he say in verse 8? He said, many will come in my name saying, I am he, and the time is drawn near. Lots of attached verses, lots of scripture throughout the Bible talk about these false prophets. Jesus is harder, by the way, on false prophets than anyone. He is the most direct and the most emphatically judicially condemning of false prophets, as are the...read the book of Jude. Read 1 and 2 Peter. And the biggest problem with the false prophets, one of their largest avenues of deceit, is in the end times.
Saying, oh, he's going to come back here. There's an entire false religion. The abbreviation is the JW's. Their whole belief is bankrupt, because their religious authority, the Watchtower, which is equal to God, and speaks on behalf of God, even though it contradicts Deuteronomy 24, because they've had about 40 different prophecies that never came true.
So the prophet should have been stoned according to the Deuteronomy standards. But they'll come, but they'll be dressed in sheep's clothing, so they'll be wolves dressed in sheep's clothing. Who wore sheep's clothing, by the way?
This is a great point here that I didn't learn until later on as a believer. Shepherds. What did shepherds wear?
Well, what did they do? They had the sheep shorn, and then they made coats, and they made jackets, sweaters, vests, you know, wool, whatever. So shepherds wore sheep's clothing. So when Jesus said, beware of wolves that come in sheep's clothing, wolves, they weren't disguised as sheep. They were there to lead the sheep over the cliff. They were there to devour and shed the blood of sheep.
They were disguised as shepherds, false prophets. So they will be more and more proliferated and available and spreading their evil in the dark last days, and pointing people away from the true Jesus, saying things like, well, there's a bunch of different ways that lead. Which is why Jesus is trying to bolster the disciples' belief in him and build them stronger. But they always attack, they always are focused on the dates, false dates, and they always attack the person and nature of Jesus. And then, thirdly, they attack the source of salvation, saying, well, it's not grace alone, you've got to do some things to add.
So let's keep moving here through these questions. So, are things going to get better or worse for believers before Christ's return? Well, when you read Christ's words here, it looks like they're going to get worse.
I mean, this idea being dragged in front of the synagogue, being tried, I mean, this language here is pretty stark. You know, nation will rise against nation. There's this idea of warfare, kingdom against kingdom. Earthquakes in various places, famines, pestilences.
Wow, we're hearing a lot about that. Disease, widespread diseases, new viruses taking place, fearful sites, great signs from heaven. But before all these things, they will lay their hands on you. In Greek, lay their hands on you literally means grab you or seize you.
This is not a lay your hands on, hey little buddy, and tap on the shoulder like we would pray over someone put our hands on their shoulder or on their head or whatnot. This is an aggressive, almost militant move of someone reaching out and grabbing someone, persecuting you, delivering you up to synagogues and prisons. Here you're Jewish, you're in a synagogue, you're in the temple, and yet the very people that you're a part of, heritage-wise, ethnically, are trying to kill you and put you in prison. And it gets worse. You'll be brought before kings and rulers for my name's sake.
And that's a very important distinction. When you're suffering and you're having a rough time, ask yourself, are you suffering for his name's sake? Are you getting a lot of grief? Are you getting mocked?
Are you getting laughed at because of his name? Or because of the stupid things you're doing, the stupid things you're saying, being too politically active and not spiritually active. That's a very important thing.
So you would ask yourself if you're facing persecution, hallelujah, especially if it's for his name's sake. So things look like they're going to get a lot worse, but also the power of God and the grace of the Holy Spirit, He will show you, He says, I will give you a mouth and a wisdom which all your adversaries will not be able to contradict or resist. Isn't that something? What a powerful statement. And He's got it.
He has got it, and let's keep going. Why are believers hated by the world, even by family, as the end times approach? So believers, there is a hate, and Jesus says it many times, different ways, but He says, look, they hate you, but they really hate me. And what a badge of honor for a Christian.
And to also understand is, the person that's hating on you because you're a Christian, that may have fired you from your job because you love Christ, because you were trying to do devotions at work, or because you were illegally trying to do things to be a blessing and to lift up him, they're not the enemy. They're under the control. They have been captured.
They're in bondage to the enemy. And so we're praying that their soul will be saved, and we're not angry at targeting them. When the disciples were arrested, they didn't pull out swords and try to fight. They went, they took their beating, and they proclaimed Christ, and people got saved.
The Philippian jailer got saved when Paul and Silas were there singing in the dungeon. And so it's really interesting, the direction or the misdirection of the hate, how we think about it, and what's truly the case, and this goes back to my name's sake. Verse 13 is a great verse, but it will turn out for you as an occasion for testimony.
What a powerful statement. Now we're out of time for this segment, Robbie. When we come back next time, we're going to wrap up the end times of Jesus. We're going to answer the question, when is He coming back? And maybe we're not going to answer that question.
What's the exact date? That's a cliffhanger. I'm not a sheeple. Tons of ratings next time on Experienced Truth, based on what I just plugged and just how I just set that up. But we are in fact going to deal with that more, and we're going to talk about what is it like to be a Christian when things get darker, more oppressive, more intense against the faith, as maybe many are today, and what Jesus said specifically about that. And when He says, Not one hair of your head will be lost, what in the world does that mean? We finish up Luke 21 7-19 right here next time on Experienced Truth. This is the Truth Network.
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