2020 to 2030: The Decade of Destiny
Song of Solomon 6:10 “Who is she who looks forth as the morning, fair as the moon, clear as the sun, awesome as an army with banners?”
This is how the Beloved sees His perfect bride, the church of His delight, whom He is coming soon to rescue. There is an extremely high probability that this coming decade will see the rapture of the church before the decade is over, ushering in the seven years long dreaded Day of the Lord, before the thousand years reign of Christ is established upon the earth.
2 Peter 3:10 “But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night…”
Many Christians believe that since no one can know with certainty when the rapture will take place that we should not be looking intently for the coming of this blessed event.
1 Thessalonians 5:4-6 “But you, brethren, are not in darkness, so that this Day (the Day of the Lord) should overtake you as a thief. You are all sons of light (as the morning/clear as the sun) and sons of the day. We are not of the night or of darkness (we should not be clueless). Therefore let us not sleep, as others do, but let us watch and be sober.”
We may not know with certainty when the resurrection of the righteous saints, which is followed immediately by the rapture of the righteous church will take place, but we do have plenty of biblical sings that will point us to the knowledge that its coming is eminent. We are to watch soberly for the signs that will point us to that faithful day! So that it does not take us by surprise.
Mark 13:29 “So you also, when you see these things happening (signs that will precede the rapture of the church), know that it is near—at the doors!”
The early church believed that the rapture of the church would take place in their day and eagerly waited for that event in their life time. After the apostolic age many of the disciples of the apostles realized that the day of the Lord would be revealed on the third day and that each day represented a thousand years. They based their belief on the following Scriptures:
Psalm 90:4 “For a thousand years in Your sight are like yesterday when it is past, and like a watch in the night.”
2 Peter 3:8 “But, beloved, do not forget this one thing, that with the Lord one day is a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.”
For that reason many expected that at the beginning of our third millennium something radical would happen, which it did not, remember Y2K? That is because the thousand year’s day did not begin with the birth of Jesus Christ but rather with His death and resurrection which happened thirty three years after His birth. The age of God’s grace began to be proclaimed to the entire world after the church was filled with the promised of the Father, the baptism of the Holy Spirit.
Matthew 24:14 “And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come.”
What is it that makes this 2020-30 decade so critical that something radical has to take place in it? There is a very precise promise in the Old Testament concerning the end of the second day (two thousand years) and the beginning of the third day (the millennium reign of Jesus Christ).
Hosea 6:2 “After two days He will revive us (resurrection); on the third day He will raise us up, that we might live (kingdom age) in His sight.”
If we believe that a day represents a thousand years for the church age, and that the church age begun after the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead; then according to Hosea, the resurrection and the rapture will happen at the end of the second day or at the end of two thousand years from when the church was commissioned! And the third day—or one thousand years—will begin the reign of Jesus Christ, after the seven Years Day of the Lord is completed.
We do not know with certainty what year Jesus was born; we know that He was crucified thirty-three and a half years after He was born. The church was commissioned fifty days after Jesus rose from the dead, but we do not know the exact year.
Jesus was probably born on the year two BC, give or take a couple of years. If He was born two years before our present calendar, and you count the year zero as a year, then Jesus was crucified and rose from the dead on the year 30 AD and the church was commissioned fifty days after Jesus rose from the dead on the year 30 AD; as I said, give or take two or three years.
This is the most crucial time in the history of the church, for if the resurrection and rapture do not take place before the end of this 20-30 decade, then we as the church, will have to take a long hard look at the Scriptures upon which most of our premises for His return are based.
The signs that precede the return of the Lord to the earth will let us know that the time is near.
Acts 2:17-18 “And it shall come to pass in the last days, says God, that I will pour out of My Spirit on all flesh; your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your young men shall see visions, your old men shall dream dreams. And on My menservants and on My maidservants I will pour out My Spirit in those days; and they shall prophesy.”
After a big whirlwind attracted thousands to the Upper Room, where the disciples were gathered and this large crowd wondered what it could mean that tongues of fire were resting on about one hundred and twenty of the disciple’s heads. Hearing them prophesying the wonders of God in their own foreign languages, Peter stood up and told the crowd that prophecy was being fulfilled in front of their very eyes. The first half of this prophecy that we just quoted, signaled the birth of the church age as the Spirit of God filled them with power and the wonders of the Holy Spirit.
Acts 2:19-21 “I will show wonders in heaven above and signs in the earth beneath: blood and fire and vapor of smoke. The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the coming of the great and awesome day of the Lord (This part has not happened yet). And it shall come to pass that whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
The first half of this prophecy applied to the birth or beginning of the church age, and was fulfilled almost two thousand years ago, when three thousand believers were added to the church. And the second half of this prophecy will be fulfilled at the end of the church age, before the church is taken up in the rapture after which the feared and dreadful Day of the Lord will begin.
Matthew 24:29-31 “Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light (this represents the end of the church age; remember our opening Scripture, the sun and moon refer to the church age: Fair as the moon, clear as the sun Son of Solomon 6:10); the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken. Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.”
Immediately after the tribulation of those days: Jesus told His church that in this world we would have tribulation; at the end of the church age there will be no more tribulation for the church of Jesus Christ, for we will be gathered with the Lord in our new and glorified bodies.
Amos 5:20 “Is not the day of the Lord darkness and not light? Is it not very dark, with no brightness in it?”
Light represents God’s grace—demonstrated through His church while on this earth—and darkness represents God’s judgment after the light of the church is removed from this earth!
It is imperative to understand that the Day of the Lord is the Day when God’s Wrath is unleashed against all the inhabitants of the earth, all those who refused to accept His free offer of Grace. It is a Day indeed of great tribulation, the kind that has never been experienced before, but it comes from God against humanity. The tribulation that the church is experiencing today comes not from God, but from those in the world who reject the kingdom of God.
So that in this present world the church is experiencing tribulation from those who practice evil in this world. But immediately after the church is removed, the Day of the Lord—which is the Day of His Wrath—will begin against all those who are left behind in the world.
If we interpret these Scriptures literally; as we should when possible, we will learn that before the rapture takes place, we will witness the powers of the heavens been shaken. What will be the duration of these signs before the rapture takes place?
We can only estimate according to the Scriptures. Jesus tells us that these last days will be like the days of Noah. Since that is the case, Noah and his family knew seven days ahead of time that the deluge was imminent.
Genesis 7:4-5 “For after seven more days I will cause it to rain on the earth forty days and forty nights, and I will destroy from the face of the earth all living things that I have made. And Noah did according to all that the Lord commanded him.”
When Jesus told us that the end time would be like the days of Noah, many think that it means that there is no way to know when the end is coming; but that only applies to the unbelievers and to those who do not prepare themselves. But for the believers who are awake and discerning the signs and times of the end, and are looking for and loving His appearing, we will recognize the signs: When you see these things happening, know that it is near—at the doors!”
The Bible many times confirms Scriptures by the use of numbers. Fifty days after Jesus rose from the dead, the Holy Spirit fell on about one hundred and twenty names: Acts 1:15.
Peter quoted the prophecy of Joel which spoke of the beginning and of the end of the church age. The beginning represented by the number when it begun; on the fiftieth day—Pentecost. The end represented by the number one hundred and twenty which represents the end of an age, as in the days of Noah when God put a limit of 120 years to the world that was, as the ark was been built, before the deluge came and took them all away on the one hundred and twentieth year.
What is interesting about the number one hundred and twenty is that it is about the amount of days between Pentecost and the Day of Atonement. And ten days before the Day of Atonement we have the feast of Rosh Hashanah which marks the beginning of the Days of awe which are ten. Chances are that the Days of Awe will be the days when the signs are given to mankind, to get them to repent and to call upon the name of the Lord and be saved before the judgment Day.
And it shall come to pass that whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.
1 Peter 3:20-21 “Who formerly were disobedient, when once the Divine longsuffering waited (one hundred and twenty years) in the days of Noah, while the ark was being prepared, in which a few, that is, eight souls, were saved through water. There is also an antitype which now saves us—baptism (not the removal of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God), through the resurrection of Jesus Christ.”
What is an antitype? For one hundred and twenty years the ark was built, but it was not big enough to save all those who perished during the flood had they repented or if they repented.
2 Peter 2:5 “And did not spare the ancient world, but saved Noah, one of eight people, a preacher of righteousness, bringing in the flood on the world of the ungodly.”
The building of the ark was the sermon that Noah preached; Death by water! Death was coming by a flood, and it required their repentance and death before the flood came in order to be saved.
Methuselah, the oldest man who ever lived, died the year of the flood, but before the flood came. How do we know? Methuselah means: when he is dead it shall come: the flood. Did all who repented die before the judgment of God came by the flood? There was definitely no room in the ark for all of them! Methuselah may be a type that those who repented, after hearing Noah’s preaching, were removed from the earth through natural death, and spared God’s judgment.
Isaiah 57:1 “The righteous perishes (dies), and no man takes it to heart; merciful men are taken away, while no one considers that the righteous is taken away from (the judgment of) evil.”
That was clearly the case for Methuselah, and probably as a type, for all those who like Methuselah repented and were removed by way of death before the flood judgment begun.
The antitype is that there is enough room for all of us who repent in this present day ark of God, His church, to be saved and spare from the judgment to come. Ironically it is through water baptism that we testify, and with a good conscience, that we will be removed from this world before the dreadful Day of the Lord is unleashed upon an unsuspecting world.
Revelation 3:8, 10 “I know your works. See, I have set before you an open door, and no one can shut it; for you have little strength, have kept My word, and have not denied My name...Because you have kept My command to persevere, I also will keep you from the hour of trial which shall come upon the whole world, to test those who dwell on the earth.”
If you believe that the sixty-six books of our Holy Bible are the Inspired Word of God, and if you believe that Jesus is the divine Son of God, and have accepted Jesus as your personal Savior and Lord, then you will not be left behind. The hour of testing does not apply to those who have already entered into His rest!
Hebrews 4:3, 9 “For we who have believed do enter that rest…There remains therefore a rest for the people of God.”
Before the Day of God’s wrath begins, God is going to try and save as many people as possible, from as many parts of the world as possible.
2 Peter 3:9 “The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.”
Jesus is going to return to the earth the same way that He was taken up, in a cloud, and visible to all those who were gazing intently as He was taken up into glory.
Acts 1:10-11 “And while they looked steadfastly toward heaven as He went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel, who also said, ‘Men of Galilee, why do you stand gazing up into heaven? This same Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will so come in like manner as you saw Him go into heaven.’”
So that the return of Jesus to this world is not going to be a secret thing, is going to be a very public event, visible to everyone on this entire planet, contrary to what many have taught.
Matthew 24:25-27 “See, I have told you beforehand. Therefore if they say to you, ‘Look, He is in the desert!’ do not go out; or ‘Look, He is the inner rooms!’ do not believe it. For as the lightning comes from the east and flashes to the west, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be.”
It is within the context of the verses that we just read—that the return of our Lord is a worldwide event like lightning flashing from the east to the west, so His brightness will light up the entire atmosphere—that we are told in the following verses that before the sign of the Son of Man appears in heaven: the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light as confirmation that the church of Jesus Christ is about to be removed from this earth and taken up to the clouds to be with the Lord forever and ever.
2 Timothy 4:8 “Finally, there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give to me on that Day, and not to me only but also to all who have loved His appearing.”
Paul is speaking about resurrection day, and the crown of righteousness refers to his new and glorified body that our Lord will give him on that faithful Day. Not just to him, but to all who have loved His appearing and have died with this blessed hope as an anchor to their souls. And as we well know, those of us who are alive and remain will be caught up to meet the Lord in the air with our glorified bodies as well, immediately after the resurrection.
This may be the final decade of life as we know it in this planet earth, make sure you are ready; and remember, God wants you to bring with you all your love ones and friends who are not saved as well. Let your life shine as a witness to them. So that when that Day comes they will believe your testimony and call upon the Lord and be saved.
Jude 21 “Keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life.”