Welcome to The Prophet Daniel’s Report. This is report #519. My name is Daniel Whyte III here to remind you that Jesus Christ is coming back soon and that you need to be prepared. This broadcast is not about predictions, nor is it about setting dates as some foolishly have done, however it is all about preparation.
First, today, let’s look at some Signs of His Coming in the news.
The disciples asked Jesus in Matthew 24:3, “What shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?” Jesus Christ then went on to give them (and us) clear signs that show us when we can begin to expect to see the coming of the Lord and the end of the world. Those signs include:
1. the appearance of false Christs and false prophets
2. wars and rumors of wars
4. pestilences (fatal epidemic diseases)
5. earthquakes in divers (various) places
6. increased persecution of believers
7. the Gospel being preached in all the world
8. signs and great wonders in the heavens (involving the sun, moon, stars, and planetary movements)
9. distress and perplexity among people
10. increased violence “as in the days of Noah”
11. increased homosexuality and sexual immorality “as it was in the days of Lot”
12. the rise of “Gog and Magog” (which many Bible scholars believe refers to Russia)
13. the rise of the “kings of the east” (which many Bible scholars believe refers to China)
14. increase in knowledge (science and technology)
15. apostasy in the church
16. interest in a unified world government to bring about global peace
17. interest in the rebuilding of the Temple in Jerusalem
The Bible also speaks of other signs which will be evident in “perilous times” in Second Timothy 3. Those signs are people being:
23. disobedient to parents
26. without natural affection
28. false accusers
31. despisers of those that are good
35. lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God
36. having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof.
Other signs of the times which have been gleaned from Scripture include:
37. scoffers who mock of Christ’s return
38. movement toward a one-world religion
39. outpouring of the Holy Spirit
40. outbreak of demonic and occultic activity
41. re-establishment of Israel
42. Arab hostility toward Israel
43. re-unification of Europe
44. movement toward a one-world economy
Looking at world events through the lens of the Word of God, let’s look at some headlines from today’s news that point to the second coming of the Lord Jesus Christ.
First, today, under the Sign category of WARS & RUMORS OF WARS — According to Reuters, Islamic State militants released a video on Tuesday appearing to show a captured Jordanian pilot being burnt alive, and Jordan vowed to avenge his death with an “earth-shaking” response. A Jordanian official said the authorities would execute several militants jailed in Jordan in response, including a Iraqi woman who Amman had sought to swap for the pilot taken captive after his plane crashed in Syria in December. A government spokesman said Jordan, which has been mounting air raids in Syria as part of the U.S.-led alliance against Islamic State insurgents, would deliver a “strong, earth-shaking and decisive” response.
Second, today, under the Sign category of WARS & RUMORS OF WARS — According to the Associated Press, The United States is reconsidering whether to provide weapons to Ukraine in its fight against Russian-backed separatists, but a decision has yet to be made. A senior administration official said Obama administration officials were deliberating on whether to send defensive weapons to prop up Ukrainian forces. US Secretary of State John Kerry travels to Kiev on Thursday for talks with Ukraine’s government, the same day NATO defense ministers meet in Brussels.
Third, today, under the Sign category of THE TURMOIL IN ISRAEL & THE MIDDLE EAST — According to Ynet News, Israeli Foreign Minister A-vig-dor Lieberman said on Sunday that “A fourth operation in the Gaza Strip is inevitable, just as a third Lebanon war is inevitable” because of indecisiveness in Israel’s response to Hezbollah. The foreign minister said Israel’s deterrence has been compromised following the Hezbollah attack last week that left two Israeli soldiers dead and 7 others wounded, and what he considered to be an insufficient response from Israel.
Fourth, today, under the Sign category of DISTRESS AMONG NATIONS — According to the Jerusalem Post, European diplomats have told Israeli officials in recent days that the United States and Iran are moving closer to an agreement that would allow the Islamic Republic to keep a large number of centrifuges in return for guaranteeing regional stability. According to EU officials, US Secretary of State John Kerry and his Iranian counterpart, Mohammad Zarif, have discussed increasing the number of centrifuges which Iran would be permitted to keep. In exchange, the Iranians would undertake an obligation to bring their influence to bear in order to ensure quiet in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Syria.
Fifth, today, under the Sign category of EARTHQUAKES IN DIVERS PLACES — According to The Associated Press, the U.S. Geological Survey says an earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 6.3 has struck central Argentina. The quake struck at 7:49 a.m. on Monday, with its epicenter about 54 miles from the city of La Punta, and about 213 miles from the Chilean capital, Santiago. USGS says it was relatively deep and there is only a small chance that it will cause fatalities or major damage.
The Bible says in Matthew 24:36: “But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only.”
You can read these stories in more detail and get more Second Coming-related news on our website at Second Coming Herald.com
Now, it’s time for Prophecy Bootcamp.
Prophecy Bootcamp is where we deal with the basics of prophecy, the Second Coming of Christ, and what will happen in the future according to the Bible. Our aim here is not to make predictions but to help you get prepared by understanding how things will unfold in the end times.
Our topic for today is titled “Judgment Begins at the House of God” (Part 5) from Dr. Ed Hindson’s book “Revelation: Unlocking the Future”.
This section is titled: SMYRNA: THE PERSECUTED CHURCH (PART 1)
Smyrna was located about 35 miles from Ephesus. It was the next major city on the Roman road. Known today as Izmir, ancient Smyrna was a beautiful and prosperous city. As early as 195 BC, a temple had been built there to Dea Rome (the personification of Rome as a goddess). In AD 25, a temple was built there to Emperor Tiberius. Thus, emperor worship became a matter of great pride and loyalty to the people of Smyrna.
In contrast to the deification of Rome and its emperors stood the Christian church at Smyrna. There is not one hint of compromise in our Lord’s letter to them. Their devotion to Christ was such that they refused to burn incense at Caesar’s bust. But in time, they paid dearly for their fidelity to the Savior. In the middle of the second century, the aged and godly Polycarp, bishop of the church for forty years and John’s personal disciple, was burned at the stake for his faith in Jesus Christ.
“Swear by the genius of Caesar and I will release you. Revile Christ!” the proconsul demanded.
“For eighty-six years I have served him and he has done me no wrong,” Polycarp replied. “How then can I blaspheme my King who saved me? I am a Christian!”
Condemned as “the teacher of Asia, the father of the Christians, the destroyer of the gods, “Polycarp died with calm dignity and unflinching courage. A century later, in AD 251, during the Decian persecution, Pionius the Presbyter was arrested on the anniversary of Polycarp’s death and executed for his faith in Christ. His last words were, “I have chosen to die in obedience to my master rather than transgress his commands.”
Ancient Smyrna was named for a perfume whose aroma was released by crushing the resin of a small thornbush. The perfume was known to the Greeks as “Smyrna.” The city itself was ruled by Anatolians, Lydians, and Persians. It was eventually totally destroyed and left in ruins. Alexander the Great rebuilt it as a Greek city, but it later gave its allegiance to Rome. Cicero called the city “our most faithful and most ancient ally.” In New Testament times, Smyrna was a large Roman city with a prosperous Jewish community.
In AD 178 and again in 180, Smyrna was badly damaged by earthquakes and was rebuilt by Emperor Marcus Aurelius. In AD 325, during the Council of Nicea, Bishop Eytychius represented Smyrna. In the fifth century, Attila the Hun conquered the city. In AD 673, it fell to the Arabs, but was liberated until 1402 when it fell to Tamerlane, who massacred the Christian population in the name of Islam.
Lord willing, we will continue looking at this topic on our next broadcast/podcast.
In closing, let’s consider what God wants you and me to do in light of His Second Coming.
Jesus Christ said in Luke 19:13 to “Occupy till I come.” In light of that, we are continuing our Bible study series on the books of First & Second Thessalonians which Paul wrote to believers who had concerns about the Second Coming of Jesus Christ, and what they should do as they waited. This section is titled “Living Like a Christian (Part 8)” from the book “Waiting on the Second Coming” by Ray C. Stedman.
In the last section of chapter 5 we find instructions on how to behave toward God. And Paul minces no words. First, he says, “Be joyful always.” Perhaps the better translation is “Be cheerful.” Don’t let things get you down.
The pressures under which we live today are enough to test the most stalwart among us, to rob us of peace and contentment. But a Christian has an inner resource for dealing with difficulty. James insists that we should even consider ourselves fortunate when hard times come: “My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations.” Do not take it as an attack. Do not moan and groan and say, “What have I done to deserve this?” Be glad! It’s good for you! Trials stretch you and make you face yourself and learn things about yourself you didn’t know before. Trials lead to maturity, so “That you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.”.
If the Lord tarries His coming and we live, we will continue looking at this topic in our next broadcast/podcast.
Remember the words of the Lord in Matthew 24:42: “Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come.” Matthew 24:44 says, “Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.”
If you are not ready for the return of Jesus Christ, may I encourage you to get ready today by receiving Him as your Savior. John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will. Romans 10:13 says, “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
Keep looking up for your redemption draweth nigh. Let us join in the prayer of John the Revelator — “Even so, come, Lord Jesus.” God bless you.
Daniel Whyte III has spoken in meetings across the United States and in over twenty-five foreign countries. He is the author of over forty books. He is also the president of Gospel Light Society International, a worldwide evangelistic ministry that reaches thousands with the Gospel each week, as well as president of Torch Ministries International, a Christian literature ministry which publishes a monthly magazine called The Torch Leader. He is heard by thousands each week on his radio broadcasts/podcasts, which include: The Prayer Motivator Devotional, The Prayer Motivator Minute, as well as Gospel Light Minute X, the Gospel Light Minute, the Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message, the Prophet Daniel’s Report, the Second Coming Watch Update and the Soul-Winning Motivator, among others. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology from Bethany Divinity College, a Bachelor’s degree in Religion from Texas Wesleyan University, a Master’s degree in Religion, a Master of Divinity degree, and a Master of Theology degree from Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary. He has been married to the former Meriqua Althea Dixon, of Christiana, Jamaica for over twenty-seven years. God has blessed their union with seven children. Find out more at www.danielwhyte3.com. Follow Daniel Whyte III on Twitter @prophetdaniel3 or on Facebook.