The Wicked Lost Do Not Understand the End Times

Wisdom's Friend

The Wicked Lost Do Not Understand the End Times

In a previous post ( the Paris terrorist attacks), I shared something the Holy Spirit revealed to me about why the Paris attacks were possible, and that many of the victims did not realize the true spiritual nature of those attacks and therefore did not understand what had happened to them. Since then, the Lord has expanded that revelation to show how the spiritual lessons to be learned from that attack apply to a much broader scope, even the coming judgment of the whole world in these end times. It is this broader, expanded meaning that is shared here.

One of the ways the Spirit showed me something of the spiritual causes of the Paris attacks and others to come was to show similarities between passages in the Old Testament and the New, especially between Daniel and Revelation. regarding such events of the end times. Hundreds of years separate the time periods of these two books, as they also separate the writing of Revelation from our own age. Yet the God who knows the end from the beginning (Is. 46:10) caused these ancient books to be written down for our benefit (1Cor. 10:11), knowing that we would need their message for events that would occur in our own time. Below is the first example of such comparison for our benefit, between a message from Proverbs and a message in Revelation, both of which can find application in the events of the Paris attacks.

“29 Who has woe? Who has sorrow? . . . Who has wounds without cause? Who has dullness of the eyes?
30 Those who linger over wine, those who go looking for mixed wine.
31 Do not look on the wine when it is red, when it sparkles in the cup, when it goes down smoothly.
32 Afterward it bites like a snake, and stings like a viper. . . .
35 You will say, ‘They have struck me, but I am not harmed!
They beat me, but I did not know it!
When will I awake? I will look for another drink'” (Prov. 23-29-35 NET)

That is the Old Testament. Here is the New:

“2 Fallen! Fallen is Babylon the Great! She has become a home for demons and a haunt for every evil spirit, a haunt for every unclean and detestable bird. 3 For all the nations have drunk the maddening wine of her adulteries. The kings of the earth committed adultery with her, and the merchants of the earth grew rich from her excessive luxuries” (Rev. 18:2-3 NIV).

Now, please do not misunderstand. It is not being claimed that these passages are directly about the Paris attacks. But they do provide insight into why they happened, for the nature of sin and its consequences do not change through the ages and the spiritual laws and truths referred to in these passages of old reveal valuable lessons for our own day.

Notice, for example that the Proverbs passage speaks of abuse of literal, physical wine and its harmful consequences, whereas the Revelation passage refers to the lust for things of this world, which is a drunkenness of the spirit, which can, and often does, spill over into physical, fleshly drunkenness. This is an appropriate description of the scene in a big, modern city where the attacks occurred. Many of the sinful excesses of modern society were in full swing during the music concert that night. And it may have been no coincidence, as was noted in the previous post, that the musical group references a bird in its name, making a chilling connection with verse two of the Revelation passage, which describes a city as “a home for demons and a haunt for every evil spirit, a haunt for every unclean and detestable bird.”

The Proverbs passage, on the other hand, while dealing more with the actual, physical wine and the consequences of getting drunk with it, warns against desiring such wine, even though it is appealing and desirable (v. 31), because after over-imbibing it, it turns and strikes back at the one it has seduced (v. 32).

Applying this to those attending the concert, certainly music has it charms and is desirable. But the lyrics of some of the songs played that night were blasphemous and an affront to God. Therefore, it should not come as a surprise if the devil, the snake in the garden, should turn on the very ones it deceived into eating forbidden fruit (v. 32).

Nevertheless, for all this, when it was all over, those who had escaped the attack unharmed were quoted in news reports as saying that this was just another terrorist attack and saw nothing unusual about it, just another chance encounter with the evil side of this world that sometimes intrudes itself into the lives of people. So they went on their way, seeking out the next such offering of the world, wanting more of the temporary escape from such evil, not knowing that that which they sought as an escape from harm and evil is the very thing that brings it down upon them.

“It will be as though a man fled from a lion only to meet a bear, as though he entered his house and rested his hand on the wall only to have a snake bite him” (Amos 5:19 NIV).

They learn nothing from their experience. This is evidenced by the fact that later the same musical group performed in the same place again. How well such an attitude fits the closing words of the Proverbs passage:

“You will say, ‘They have struck me, but I am not harmed! They beat me, but I did not know it! When will I awake? I will look for another drink'”( v. 35).

“They beat me, but I did not know it.” This can be the reaction to one drunk from physical wine. But it also applies to those who inflict harm upon their spiritual bodies (1 Cor. 15:44). To them, such terrorist attacks seem like a nightmare from which they desire to awaken–only so they can seek out yet another such worldly offering that appears appealing on the outside but deadens the inside of the one drinking it all in.

A further consequence of not learning from such preliminary judgments of choosing the world and its sinful, temporary pleasures instead of God and his eternal pleasures is that it leaves those failing to learn from such preliminary judgments unprepared for the final judgment which will fall upon this world in the day of the Lord, as the next verses from the Amos passage declare:

“Will not the day of the LORD be darkness, not light–pitch-dark, without a ray of brightness? I hate, I despise your religious feasts; I cannot stand your assemblies” (Amos 5:20-21 NIV).

“Away with the noise of your songs! I will not listen to the music of your harps” (Amos 5:23 NIV).

Make no mistake about it. This world has its own religion which is opposed to the true religion of God (James 1:27). Both religions have music with which the spirit of those following that religion is expressed. But in one, the spirit is that of sinful self-indulgence defying God’s holiness and his laws, while the other seeks to worship God, not self, by praising him in word and music. Those who choose the world’s ways do not understand that the initial judgments which God sends against their public gatherings are actually a merciful warning to them to depart from those ways while there is still time, before the night comes with its final judgment and there is no longer any opportunity to repent (Mt. 25:10-12, Luke 13:23-27). They do not see, they do not understand.

“Though grace is shown to the wicked, they do not learn righteousness; even in a land of uprightness they go on doing evil and regard not the majesty of the LORD. O LORD, your hand is lifted high, but they do not see it” (Isaiah 26:10-11 NIV).

“Therefore the LORD’s anger burns against his people; his hand is raised and he strikes them down” (Isaiah 5:20-25 NIV).

These are quotations from Scripture for a people of long ago, yet they still have tremendous relevance for those of us living in today’s world, for God’s principles of grace and judgment still apply. The question is, will we learn from them? Or will these lessons be ignored? They were ignored, along with the warnings of impending judgment that they bring, in the days of Noah, and we have this warning from Jesus himself that that is how it will be toward the end of this world:

“37 As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. 38 For in the days before the flood, people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day Noah entered the ark; 39 and they knew nothing about what would happen until the flood came and took them all away. That is how it will be at the coming of the Son of Man” (Mt. 24:37-39 NIV).

Even those who belong to the Lord can have less than full knowledge and understanding about what is to come, as evidenced when Daniel was given a vision of those final events. When he sought from the angel who brought his vision what that vision meant, he was told:

“4 But you, Daniel, close up and seal the words of the scroll until the time of the end. Many will go here and there to increase knowledge. . . . 8 I heard, but I did not understand. So I asked, ‘My lord, what will the outcome of all this be?'”
9 “He replied, ‘Go your way, Daniel, because the words are closed up and sealed until the time of the end'” (Dan. 12:4, 8-9 NIV).

That was the instruction of God to his servant in that age of this world: for the servant of God to go about his business of serving God however the opportunity presented itself, for no more understanding would be given by God until the time of the end. That end is now approaching and now the words of the final book of the Bible repeal that limited restriction on understanding and declare the time for opening up new understanding of the events of the time of the end. For, just as Daniel had a vision for his day, so his fellow servant John the apostle had a vision for his day–and ours, upon whom the end is about to come. There, John heard his angelic messenger proclaim:

“Do not seal up the words of the prophecy of this book, because the time is near” (Rev. 22:10 NIV).

The time is indeed near for the fulfilling of all things (Luke 21:22, 1Cor. 10:11, Eph. 1:7-10). We do not yet know the exact timetable which God has for the events of his final judgment, but we do have the mind of Christ (1Cor. 2:16) so that we can understand the preliminary judgments which fall upon this earth–events which those in power fail to discern or understand (1Cor. 2:8). For only those in Christ have the Holy Spirit to grant them that understanding (1Cor. 2:10). For “we have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us” (1Cor. 2:12 NIV).

This is one of the many great blessings which God bestows upon those who belong to him, understanding of events in the world, including those events which signal its approaching demise. But this understanding escapes those who live their lives apart from the Spirit of God.

“17 But, dear friends, remember what the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ foretold. 18 They said to you, ‘In the last times there will be scoffers who will follow their own ungodly desires.’ 19 These are the men who divide you, who follow mere natural instincts and do not have the Spirit” (Jude 1:17-20 NIV).

This is the core reason why those who reject Christ and favor the world have no understanding of the last days of that world: That understanding comes only through the Holy Spirit of God, given in his Son, Jesus Christ–and they are without that Spirit. Instead, they have the spirit of the world (1Cor. 2:12) and of the evil one (Eph. 2:2). And that spirit does not want the world to understand the saving truth of the gospel but rather seeks to blind the mind and understanding of the unbelieving world (2Cor. 4:4) so that it can enslave them. That spirit is already at work, robbing the lost of understanding.

“The foolish die for lack of understanding” (Prov. 10:21 WEB).

“Every spirit who doesn’t confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is not of God, and this is the spirit of the Antichrist, of whom you have heard that it comes. Now it is in the world already ” (1Jn. 4:3 NIV).

This evil spirit is indeed in the world already, blinding the lost who pursue wickedness and pleasures of this world instead of pursuing God and his pleasures. This evil spirit robs them of the understanding they need for these end times and to be saved. It is my prayer, therefore, that they will read this and repent, which means to turn around and quit following the world and start following Jesus, who is our wisdom (1Cor. 1:30) and who gives us understanding through the Holy Spirit (Jn. 14:15-17, Jn. 14:26, Jn. 15:26).

My prayer for the lost of this world is that they would pray this prayer to God:

“Give me understanding that I may live” (Ps. 119:144).

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