This Week's Sermon: Prophecy continued ( 3-24-15 )
The part of the Holy Bible known as The Old Testament shows us that prophecy has been going on for thousands of years.
This is why they are called “ the Prophets “.
They not only prophesied of the end times in our day but they also prophesied of future events of God's judgments on both Israel and the heathen back in their day.
There is a misconception of God's grace in the Old Testament as compared to the New Testament.
In reading the Old Testament books known as “ the Prophets “, you will find that even though God warned of judgment on Israel's disobedience and the heathen as well, God would have delighted in withdrawing His plan to execute His wrath and judgment on both Israel and the heathen, if only they would have acknowledged their sins and repented.
“ And refused to obey, neither were mindful of thy wonders that thou didst among them; but hardened their necks, and in their rebellion appointed a captain to return to their bondage: but thou art a God ready to pardon, gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and forsookest them not.“ Nehemiah 9:17
“ The LORD is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and plenteous in mercy. “ Psalm 103:8
“ The LORD is gracious, and full of compassion; slow to anger, and of great mercy. “ Psalm 145:8
“ And rend your heart, and not your garments, and turn unto the LORD your God: for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repenteth him of the evil. “ Joel 2:13
“ And he prayed unto the LORD, and said, I pray thee, O LORD, was not this my saying, when I was yet in my country? Therefore I fled before unto Tarshish: for I knew that thou art a gracious God, and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repentest thee of the evil. “ Jonah 4:2
“ The LORD is slow to anger, and great in power, and will not at all acquit the wicked: the LORD hath his way in the whirlwind and in the storm, and the clouds are the dust of his feet. “ Nahum 1:3
As the writer of Hebrews said;
“ Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever. “ Hebrews 13:8
Grace is not a new concept with God in the New Testament after Jesus came to earth and died.
God has always bestowed grace...even in the Old Testament.
God is the same and never changes.
However, God's grace only comes when we acknowledge our sins and confess them to Him and ask His forgiveness and believe in His only begotten Son, Jesus.
This is why Jesus said we must not only believe the gospel but repent from sin as well;
“ And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel. “ Mark 1:15
The fact that we do not hear the word “ hell “ mentioned in evangelical churches today and the word “ repent “, is in itself a sign that Jesus is coming back and that we are definitely in the end times.
God is a God of judgment and a God of mercy and grace...if we repent.
It is God's nature to judge just as it is for Him to show mercy...according to the Holy Bible.
However, God would rather show mercy and grace, than to pour out His wrath.
This is why God has dragged prophecy of the day of His wrath in the end time out so long.
As Peter said;
“ The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. “ 2 Peter 3:9
Just as God finally had enough of the wicked world in Noah's day and destroyed it, so in our future God again will someday say, enough is enough.
When the angel said;
“ And sware by him that liveth for ever and ever, who created heaven, and the things that therein are, and the earth, and the things that therein are, and the sea, and the things which are therein, that there should be time no longer: “ Revelation 10:6
actually can be understood to mean there shall be no more delay of prophecy being fulfilled.
Technically, time continues even after the angel will say this since Jesus will have His Kingdom for a thousand years of 24 hour days...not to mention the 7 year tribulation period continues day after day, until Jesus returns, after the angel says this.
Fortunately for the human race, God is patient and longsuffering, kind, of great mercy and very slow to anger and is willing to save anyone who repents and believes the gospel of Jesus Christ.
My friend, the wrath of God is going to be terrible for those here on the earth during the 7 year tribulation period.
Even with all the evil the antichrist will try to do to people, that will not compare to what God will do to those who take the mark of the antichrist and persecute believers in Jesus during the 7 year tribulation period.