The reason I teach about End Times, apart from giving people hope in the future, is to keep them from the fear-mongering manipulation of Last Days, Doomsday prophets, who get rich off this type of exploitation. – Brook Potter
In 2015, the broader Charismatic prophetic circles were buzzing with more prophecies about the Last Days, or End Times, and the impending Judgment of God. Everything from the Monster Energy Drink being linked to the Mark of the Beast, to speculation over the Obama and the Pope being the Antichrist and the false prophet spoken of in the book of Revelation.
Of course, the biggest news came out from persons pushing the Blood Moon theology as well as the Shemitah. They had many people convinced that by September 2015, something big was going to happen. Needless to say, we are still here, and I anxiously await the numerous apologies and repentance videos that are to come from people who have clearly got it wrong.
For those who are suffering from the uneventful Apocalypse, I’d like to offer 5 things to consider when the it comes to the subject of End Times, that may help prevent some of the fear and hysteria in the future.
1. God is not just focused on America.
It amazes me how many people are fixated on the judgment of America. This may come as a bit of a shock to some people, but the Constitution of the United States of America is not synonymous with the Bible, and the American Flag is not synonymous with the Cross. Similarly, America is not a continuation of Old Covenant Israel, and they have no national covenant with God.
America didn’t exist at the time when the Bible was finally canonized, and quite literally, there is no mention of it in the Bible. With that said, we cannot take patterns from God’s relationship with Old Covenant Israel and try to apply them to Modern Day America.
So, whenever someone comes forward and says that God is about to judge America over some social issues, our first question should be, has God judged this social issue in any other country? Surely, if God was judging nations, surely there would be countries much higher on the list of offenses.
Our singling out of America is nothing more than special pleading, and there is no evidence biblically, or seen elsewhere in the world, to support the idea that God is judging America over it’s social policies.
In fact, God is not in the business of judging nations at all, but we will address that later on.
2. Lessons from the Failed Shemitah.
Days before the end of the Shemitah, Johnathan Cahn started hedging his predictions. Now that the event has pasted, most of his videos talking about the Shemitah have been set to private and are no longer available on his channel. Obviously, he cannot control the various interviews and other video channels that has his predictions out there for all to see.
In Cahn’s Book, the Shemitah, he attempts to build the case for America’s judgment, through two arguments. Firstly, that since America has more Jews living in the country than any nation besides Israel, it therefore fits the criteria to be applicable to the Jewish Calendar, as well as the judgments as laid out in the Old Testament.
In other words, because 6.5 million Jews live in the United States, or roughly 1.8% of the population, America therefore falls under the Jewish Law in God’s Eyes. It should be noted that there is nothing in Scripture to support this idea, neither is there anything to suggest that God is dealing with a Nation because of the number of Jews that live there.
Cahn’s second argument is one that many Christians tend to believe. He claims that because America fits the pattern of Old Covenant Israel, they qualify for the judgments that came upon Israel. Now again, this is special pleading, and a poor attempt to try and link passages, that are not even remotely connected, to draw this conclusion.
However the Scripture say otherwise. ONLY ancient Israel, had the Law of Moses. Only Ancient Israel had the promise of Judgment for disobeying (Deuteronomy 32), and ONLY ancient Israel was punished for their disobedience first by the Babylonians in 586BC and lastly by the Roman Empire in 70AD.
Psalms 147:19-20 He sheweth his word unto Jacob, his statutes and his judgments unto Israel. He hath not dealt so with any nation: and as for his judgments, they have not known them. Praise ye the LORD.
If you want to protect yourself against future Doomsday Prophets, just remember the scripture above. The Law, and the the subsequent Judgments of the Law, were ONLY given to Ancient Israel, and have nothing to do with any other Nation, despite what “prophets” may say.
The lunacy of the Blood Moons.
The last blood moon was September 28th, 2015. While the previous blood moons and eclipse have yielded nothing, many tried to hype the last one, as a “Super Blood Moon!”, to try and build up expectation of some huge event that would happen as a result.
John Hagee and others have tried to link this event to Bible prophecies, even though there is nothing prophetic about this, as it is a natural occurrence that we can predict and track with accuracy. Further, John Hagee insists that the blood moons and eclipse, landing on feast days of the Jewish Calendar, have great significance.
What Hagee and others fail to understand is that the Hebrew Calendar is a Lunar Calendar, and many of the events are instructed to happen on a full moon. Depending on your sect of Judaism, Passover begins on the full moon in April and can last for either 7 or 8 days. So the Jewish Feast naturally follows the full moon. Coupled with the fact that an Eclipse or Blood moon can only occur at a Full moon, we see that this isn’t significant at all, it’s just inevitable.
John Hagee and others then try to extrapolate meaning from the passage of Joel 2, which reads.
Joel 2:31 The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and the terrible day of the LORD come.
Now there are number of problems with trying to link this passage with the naturally occurring phenomenon of Blood Moons. Even if you are unfamiliar with the Apocalyptic Language of Joel, it should be noted that the very next passages state where all this calamity is going to occur.
Joel 2:32 And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the LORD shall be delivered: for in mount Zion and in Jerusalem shall be deliverance, as the LORD hath said, and in the remnant whom the LORD shall call.
Joel 2 is talking about a calamity that is going to befall Jerusalem. And more importantly, the Joel 2 passages HAS BEEN FULLED, as Peter explained in the book of Acts 2, when he describes the Baptism of the Holy Spirit to the “Men of Judea. v14.”
Acts 2:14 – 16 But Peter, standing up with the eleven, lifted up his voice, and said unto them, Ye men of Judaea, and all ye that dwell at Jerusalem, be this known unto you, and hearken to my words: For these are not drunken, as ye suppose, seeing it is but the third hour of the day. But this is that which was spoken by the prophet Joel;
He then quotes the very same passage from Joel 2 telling the “Men of Israel v22” that the Baptism of the Holy Spirit was the fulfillment of Joel 2. That happened within a generation before Rome came and destroyed Jerusalem.
Acts 2:20-22 The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before that great and notable day of the Lord come: And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved. Ye men of Israel, hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him in the midst of you, as ye yourselves also know:
So to avoid any future confusion and misuse of Joel 2 and Blood Moons, remember the Scriptures itself says that Joel 2 was directed to Israel and has been fulfilled through the Baptism of the Spirit and the destruction of Jerusalem in 70AD.
Mark of the Beast is Six Hundred and Sixty-Six, not three individual sixes.
In light of the Monster Energy Drink conspiracy, and even speculations about the Google Chrome and even the Cern logo, we must address the matter of the number of the Beast. The majority of these dooms day prophets, always seem to find a spurious connection to the number of beast, however, there is one major difference between their speculation and what the Scripture actually says about it.
Revelation 13:18 Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six.
The first problem most Dooms Day prophets get wrong is the number itself. The Bible says the number is Six Hundred and Sixty-six. It is NOT three individual sixes. Using the Monster Drink as an an example, three claw marks comprising the logo represent three iterations of the Hebrew symbol “Vav,” resulting in a Hebrew equivalent of three individual sixes, adding up to 18. To truly be the mark of the beast, in Hebrew would be written “Tav Resh Samech Vav,” correctly representing six hundred sixty-six.
Secondly, John is writing to his first Century audience and he explains to them that they will understand what the number means. And lastly, the number of the beast is that of a man not a product. With these three facts extrapolated from that single verse, we can rule out the majority of candidates we see being linked to the number of the beast.
5. Judgment from God over Sin.
My final point is how to guard against the Dooms Day prophets that are calling for God’s Judgment upon a nation over social issues, such as marriage rights and abortions. Those are not the only issues, but they are the most prominent.
Ultimately, the common misused concept in Christendom to instill fear, especially around the matter of end times, is the idea that God is about to judge some nation and bring destruction for sin. This idea comes again out of not recognizing that God’s judgment in the Old Testament centered around the Children of Israel and preserving the blood lines until the time of Christ.
So we takes stories about Noah and the flood, Sodom and Gomorrah, and think this is God’s normal behavior and attitude towards sin. However, these actions in the Old Testament can just as easily be seen as a preventative measure. Removing the very sinful people whom, if left unchecked, would have brought the human race to extinction before the appointed time of Christ.
None the less, the picture of God we see revealed in the person of Christ is someone much different. When the disciples came into contact with the Samaritan village that had rejected the words of Christ, they enquired of Jesus if they should bring judgment upon the village by calling down fire from heaven as Elijah had done (Luke 9:51-54). To which, Jesus rebuked them for their desire to bring judgment.
Luke 9:55 – 56 But he turned, and rebuked them, and said, Ye know not what manner of spirit ye are of. For the Son of man is not come to destroy men’s lives, but to save them. And they went to another village.
What can save us from this type of fear-mongering is a quick understanding of the finished work of Jesus Christ. According to the Trinitarian tradition, Jesus came as the Last Adam, to undo the work of the First Adam.
Romans 5:19 For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.
Jesus Christ was the one that represented all humanity. So when He died, all of the Adamic race of humanity died with him (2 Corinthians 5:14), taking sin into the grave. After taking sin into the grave, Jesus Christ rose again because all of humanity was declared righteous.
Romans 15:23-25 (Youngs Literal Translation) And it was not written on his account alone, that it was reckoned to him, but also on ours, to whom it is about to be reckoned — to us believing on Him who did raise up Jesus our Lord out of the dead, who was delivered up because of our offences, and was raised up because of our being declared righteous.
The reason God is not judging nations or people today is because of the Finished work of Jesus Christ. All humanity has been forgiven of all sins, and made righteous. Believers get to experience and manifest that Righteousness by our faith, but the objective truth is already done. In God’s perspective, all mankind is righteous. And it would be unjust for Him to judge any person or nation now.
Romans 3:22 Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference:
In closing, let’s remember these final points whenever we are encountering these Prophets of Doom using these techniques to convince us that the End is Near. Firstly, think outside your country, when a prophet speaks about coming judgment. If you think God is going to judge your nation over some social behavior, but you haven’t seen any other nation judged for doing the same or worse, it’s probably a false prophecy.
Secondly, Ancient Israel was the only nation that had the Law. When a Prophet of Doom tries to link a modern nation with the behavior of Israel and say that God is going to deal with that modern nation the same way, they are speaking from ignorance. The Covenant of Moses, the Sabbaths, feasts and judgment for disobeying the Law was given exclusively to Ancient Israel, and it was never given to any other nation, no matter how much the want to believe it.
Thirdly, taking Scriptures out of context, that have clearly been said to have been fulfilled is a recipe for manipulation. Always check the audience to whom these prophecies are speaking, and under which covenant it is related to. If it is an Old Covenant Judgment passage for Ancient Israel, then that does not apply to New Covenant believers living after the cross of Jesus Christ.
Fourth, the Mark of the beast is not three individual sixes, it is six hundred and sixty-six. It is the number of a name, and John’s first century audience would have understood it. So anything that doesn’t match those criteria is clearly just spurious connections.
Lastly, the judgment of God in the Old Covenant does not translate to the New Covenant. All of humanity has been forgiven, justified and made righteous by the finished work of Jesus Christ, so it would be unjust for God to punish sin now, in the New Covenant.
If we follow these principles, we’ll find ourselves doing much better when people try to convince us of their Last Days Madness.
Brook Potter, a native of the Caribbean nation of Trinidad and Tobago, has been a minister of the Finished Work of the Cross, including the ministry to heal the sick since 2009.