How Close Are We?

By Michael Forti

As we continue to see the earth shaking with the increasing signs of the times to include catastrophic weather patterns, hail, out-of-control tornadoes, forest fires and landslides, we have to wonder, WHATS NEXT?

While people are living life as usual, police sirens continue to flash as two officers are gunned down. The nightly news is filled with more mass shootings taking place including kidnappings. Is All Mighty God allowing the earthquakes to increase off the coasts of California and Chili as a wakeup call to humanity? As we look back at the historical days of Noah, Lot and of the Exodus, we can clearly see that God is the same yesterday, today and forever.

Biblical history shows that God always sent His warning just before He delivered the faithful, and then came judgment. Yes, friends, it will be life as usual when our Lord comes.

However, “I tell you, on that night two will be in one bed; one will be taken and the other left. Two will be grinding together; one will be taken and the other left” (Luke 17:26-36-NIV).

Jesus said, “There WILL BE signs in the sun, moon and stars. On the earth, nations will be in anguish and perplexity at the roaring and tossing of the sea. Men will faint from terror, apprehensive of what is coming on the world, for the HEAVENLY BODIES WILL BE SHAKEN. At that time they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory.

When these things BEGIN to take place, stand up and lift up your heads, because your redemption is drawing near” (Luke 21:25-28 NIV). Should we be preaching worldly wealth or heavenly riches?

As we continue to observe the increasing tension building up in the Middle East and in Russia, we again have to wonder, what’s next? Could 2014 fit into God’s numerical equation? The Lord teaches that He has a set day when He will judge the earth, and that all true believers will be able to see the Day approaching (Acts 17:31, Heb 10:25, 1 Thess 5:4). Could He be showing us something through His numerical system? Let’s take a look at the number 2014. The number 14, or a combination of numbers that equal or illustrate the number 14, continuously appear throughout the Bible when it comes to the subject of DELIVERANCE. The biblical meaning of the number 20 is “Redemption.” The number 14 is “Deliverance and Salvation. If you think about it, that’s a powerful combination.

Taking a look at Genesis 5:23-24, we can see that Enoch lived for 365 years before he was raptured. When you add 3+6+5 together you get the number 14. There are 365 days in a year. Israel was birthed on May 14th 1948. Israel has been a nation for 66 years and there are 66 books of the bible. When you add 1948 and 66 you get 2014. The great deliverance of Noah is located in Genesis 7:7=14. The great DELIVERANCE of the Exodus is located in chapter “14.” John chapter “14” teaches that Jesus will come back to RAPTURE His faithful and take them to ETERNAL LIFE. Hebrews 9:”28″ and Luke 21:”28″ teach that Jesus will bring SALVATION and REDEMPTION to those who are WAITING for Him (14+14 =28). The number 28 means ETERNAL LIFE. Revelation 7:”14″illustarates the RAPTURE of the tribulation saints. The “144,000” from all the tribes of Israel will be RAPTURED in Revelation “14:14″(mid-trib). “1”Thessalonians chapter “4:14” teaches that God will BRING with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in Him. The Lord then reveals His mystery about the great RAPTURE in “1”Thessalonians Chapter “4”:16-17.

Luke 17:26-37 teaches that the people all around the world will be living just the way they were in the days of Noah and Lot. They will be eating, drinking, marrying, buying, selling, planting and building right up to the day that Jesus comes. The Bible explains that in the very last days, because of the lack of the conviction from Biblical values, people will not only be living life as usual, they will be living Godless lifestyles filled with idolatry, greed, pride, envy, jealousy, sexual immorality and violence. Today, we are observing how this lost world is starting to short circuit because of the satanic rebellion which is skyrocketing off of the scale.

While this lost world, along with much of the mainline church sets their hearts and minds on earthly things, the faithful will have their hearts focused on REALITY, and the true meaning of grace. “For the GRACE of God that BRINGS SALVATION has appeared to all men. It teaches us to say “NO” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age, while we WAIT for the blessed hope–the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for us to “REDEEM” us from all wickedness and to PURIFY for Himself a people that are His very own”(Titus 2:11-“14” NIV).

Jesus taught that in the last of the last days, “Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be great earthquakes, famines and pestilences in various places, and fearful events and great signs from heaven” (Luke 21:10-11 NIV). Therefore, “Be CAREFUL, or your hearts will be weighed down with the dissipation, drunkenness and the anxieties of life, and that day will close on you like a trap. For it will come upon all those who live on the face of the whole world. Be ALWAYS on the WATCH, and pray that you will be found worthy to ESCAPE ALL that is about to happen, and that you may be able to stand before the Son of Man” (Luke 21:34-36 NIV-KJ, 1 Thess 1:9-10, 5:4, Rev 3:10-11).

How should true believers in Jesus Christ be living in these very last days? “In the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who will judge the living and the dead, and in view of His APPEARING, I give you this charge: Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out of season; CORRECT, REBUKE and ENCOURAGE–with great patience and careful instruction. For the time will come when men will NOT PUT UP with SOUND DOCTRINE. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears WANT to HEAR. They will TURN their ears AWAY FROM the TRUTH and TURN aside to myths. But you, keep your head in all situations, endure hardship, discharge all the duties of your ministry. For I am already being poured out like a drink offering, and the time has come for my departure. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have KEPT The FAITH. Now there is in store for me the CROWN of RIGHTEOUSNESS, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day–and not only to me, but also to all who have LONGED, and, who have LOVED His appearing” (2 Tim 4:1-8 NIV, KJV). “I am COMING SOON. Hold on to what you have, so that no one will take your CROWN” (Rev 3:10-11).

So, how should we be living? Since everything will be destroyed in this way, what kind of people ought you to be? You ought to live holy and godly lives as you LOOK FORWARD to the day of God and speed its coming” (2 Pet 3:11-12). Until next time, Jesus Christ is coming soon. Are you going to be READY (Matt 25:1-13).

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