Earlier this week, while praying, I saw a picture in my mind. It was a big creature rising out of the sea and heard in my head “The beast will rise out the sea and try to reclaim his people.” I looked the words up on the internet and it matched the beginning of Revelation 13:1. “And I saw the beast rising out of the sea, with ten horns….and to it the dragon gave his power and his throne and his authority… here is a call for the endurance and faith of the saints.” (ESV)
The last part of what I heard was different “The beast will rise out of the sea and try to reclaim his people.” As I asked for wisdom, these thoughts developed. The chapter talks about authority being given to the beast by the dragon. Authority was given to Jesus by God. It’s like an evil parallel. Satan fell because he was prideful and wanted the worship of man. Revelation 13, a perfect counterfeit of what Jesus came to do. The picture drawn out for us in Revelation 13 is one of unity of worship for the “beast”. It is also a twisted parallel to John 17, where Jesus prays for unity in the church, that all might believe. “.. and all who dwell on the earth will worship it, everyone whose name has not been written before the foundations of the world in the book of life of the Lamb who was slain.” In non-churchy language, it means that all who have not signed up to follow Jesus (the Lamb) are following a different god, this beast.
Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth and life.” Anything else is not the way, thus of the enemy and corruption. Knowing the identity of the one who gives the power will take the practice of discernment. This doesn’t mean fearing signs and wonders, it means that the people of God will need to be filled with the Spirit and be able to test the spirits.
It seems that the enemy will trying to look like what the church should look like to deceive people. In these last days, the beast is rising out of the sea setting up his last ditch efforts to rule and reign because he knows his time is short.
Time is short. Today I was led to 2 Peter. The heading I found there was “The Day of the Lord Will Come.” It read “…you should remember the predictions of the holy prophets an the commandment of the Lord and Savior though your apostles, knowing this first of all, that scoffers will come in the last days with scoffing, following their own sinful desires. They (the scoffers) will say ‘Where is the promise of his coming? For ever since the fathers fell asleep, all things are continuing as they were from the beginning of creation…But do not overlook this one fact, beloved, that with the Lord, one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.”
God wants all to be saved, but the time is coming when there will be no more waiting. There is a sense of urgency in the hearts of many. It’s amazingly unified. God has been speaking in unison in so many and I’m meeting them. We’re sharing the stories of what God has been speaking to us. There are common dreams and visions. For those who weren’t raised in the church I want to define a few terms the way they are commonly thought of in scripture:
perish – die without knowing Jesus, thus not gaining eternal life in heaven with the Father. Hell wasn’t made for man, but for the fallen angels. The fallen angels want to draw man to their own destruction so they entice them continually to follow the way of sin. Man is giving in left and right and choosing destruction. God’s heart is merciful and he has been patiently delaying so that more could have a chance to come to believe. Loving God is a choice because love is not forced, it must be of our own free will. God chooses to love us, he doesn’t have to and we are made in His image, so we have the same privilege. God’s heart breaks because his children don’t all love him, thus they choose to perish.
repentance – This literally means turning 180 degrees. Changing direction completely. It is submitting to God, turning to Him and saying, “take me and lead me” and letting go of your own life so He can teach you a better way. It means letting go of sin. We can’t do this on our own, but when we ask for help, God is right there to give us a helper, his own Spirit comes to live inside of us and we receive supernatural help and guidance. It is power to change. That process is called grace.
Back to 2 Peter 10. I can’t express adequately how God is impressing upon those who already know him that Jesus is returning to this earth soon. Those who are going on with life as usual and saying, “Oh, they’ve been saying that for 2,000 years. Why is it any different now?” need to read 2 Peter again because God is impressing it like a stamp in ink in the hearts of those who pray. He reveals his secrets to his friends who follow him, just as Jesus said he did with the original disciples. I have heard from several friends that they have had dreams waking them up and visions that have revealed this time as very important, just as I have had that caused alarm in their spirits. This is the message “Jesus is coming back soon and we need to be ready.”
For some of us, that means it’s time to get bolder. I pray that wherever we go, we will notice the dullness and the lifeless state of the people around us. They are HUNGRY for something more and you have that to offer them in Christ. Tell them! I am telling myself this daily.
“Awake O sleeper from the dead and Christ will shine on you.” Many are asleep and need a wake up call. Many in the church are asleep and need a wake up call. God is shaking the ground under the church for a massive wake up. I saw a vision during pre-service prayer at our church of the ground shaking under the chairs. Ropes fell for each person from the sky for them to hang on to. I believe God was saying, “I am going to shake the foundations of the church, of all that is known, and you will have to hang onto Me and Me alone for your lifeline. Nothing will stand out of true relationship with me.”
All that has not been of him will be shaken loose in these days so that people can see what the church is supposed to look like: unified, holy, and powerful. Jesus prayed this for us while he was still here and, since he is unchanging, he is still praying it in heaven. Here are his words,
“As you have sent them into the world, so you have sent me into the world. ” (As, meaning just as. When something is “as” it is like something else. We are to be sent in the manner of Christ, looking like him, doing what he did, re-presenting him and all that he was.) “..that they may all be one, just as you, Father, are in me, and I in you, that they also may be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me. The glory that you have given me I have given to them, that they may be one even as we are one. I in them and you in me, that they may become perfectly one , so that the world may know that you sent me and loved them even as I love them.“
Why do you think the devil has worked so hard to bring division? Because he does everything opposite of the Father. He is the cacophony of church splits. Where there is division, there is noise and disorder. Let the ropes drop down over the shaking church and let those in it hang on for their lives because God is shaking the ground we have stood on as ours. It is his ground. The Church is his and he is reclaiming it. Rev. 13:8 says that all who do not have faith in Jesus will fall into this trap. God has been patient with us but now is the time to speak. Church, repent of division. Grab the rope and start asking God, “Break my heart for what breaks yours.” He will bless you with his heart and it will mend the church.
For those who have been hurt by Christians in the church… read tomorrow’s post.
God hasn’t been slow to keep his promises. He’s diligent and faithful. He’s let the world see the consequences of our choices so that we can know that a world without God is chaos, disorder and destruction. “Come to me,” he calls, “I will give you rest.” The time is short and their is a real God who will really judge the world. If we surrender our lives to Jesus, we have no fear and new life starts today! You walk into a relationship that protects you, guides you and fills the emptiness inside. You won’t need drugs anymore, no liquor. None of that will compare to the joy that comes through surrender from Jesus. It is time to know Him. He’s holding out his hand, a rope for you to hang onto. Grab it and say, “Lord, I need you. Jesus, show me who you are.”