A Personal Note to You

Sunday, June 10, 2018

Good morning to friends and readers of TheFridayLetter.com. An unexpected event occurred. Some have called and emailed wondering why TheFridayLetter.com of Friday, June 8, 2018 was not posted. Desiring to advance the gospel truths of Christ, and not calling attention to personal issues, I yet owe you an explanation. My health has changed.

This past Tuesday, June 5, 2018, I suffered a heart attack, but didn’t recognize it as such and put off going to the doctor. When the chest pain persisted Wednesday morning, and at the urging of my wife and our children, I consented and went to the nearest hospital. (Here a word of caution to you, the reader, my EKG registered normal, but all was not normal. A blood test revealing the release of certain enzymes the heart releases upon a heart attack was the confirming factor.)

On Wednesday I was transferred from the first hospital to the second, where doctors performed heart catheter and ultrasound tests which confirmed a 95% blockage in one artery and 80% in another. Because of the dye used in those tests doctors said they had to wait until the dye was flushed from my kidneys before advancing to the final procedure to open the blockage.

Friday, June 8, 2018 at about noon, doctors installed two stents in the blocked arteries. I suffered significant chest pain for the next eight to ten hours, but the faithfulness of my personal Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, a chorus of prayer ascending to the Father, and the wisdom He gave doctors, preserved my life for continued life with my wife and children, Christian ministry and sharing life-changing truths of the gospel, and calling attention to the end-time imminent tribulation.

Please know my heart-felt thanksgiving for your many prayers offered on my behalf during this difficult time. Lord willing, next Friday, June 15, 2018, TheFridayLetter.com will continue to the glory, honor, praise and majesty of King Jesus, the eternal God, the Maker of all things, the One to whom we must all give a personal account, the Giver of eternal life for all who believe Him.

Marlin J. Yoder

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“what will you do in the end?”

Friday, June 1, 2018

“What will you do in the end” is an important question from God. What preparations of heart, mind, body and soul have you made to endure the end of this age, for “there will be famines, pestilences, and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of sorrows…and you will be hated by all nations for My name’s sake” (Matt. 24:7–9); and “distress of nations…the sea and the waves roaring…men’s hearts failing them from fear” (Luke 21:25–26).

Famines ravage food supplies; pestilences bring diseases; earthquakes destroy nearly everything in their paths. Volcanoes now erupt all over the world. Unexplainable ground fissures are ripping open swallowing homes. Sink holes now swallow buildings and vehicles. Is this the return of the days of Numbers 16 when God ripped open the earth and took down alive rebellious Korah, Dathan, Abiram and their families, and incinerated 250 disobedient priests with fire?

Some rivers in the world are running blood red. Vast lakes have dried up. Lightening, hail and flash floods are sudden killers. Deadly lava now erupts in Hawaii destroying homes, highways and vegetation, as poison gasses belch from the Kilauea volcano. The Pacific Ring of Fire and especially the West Coast’s Cascadia Subduction Zone increasingly show signs of imminent massive earthquakes. These signs are a witness to unbelievers, even those in the church!

“For the earnest expectation of the creation eagerly waits for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of Him who subjected it in hope; because the creation itself also will be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation groans and labors with birth pangs together until now” (Rom. 8:19–22). Are you warning unbelievers to repent?

Christ’s invitation to believe Him is still open. He stands at the door of your heart saying, “Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me” (Rev. 3:20). He will not force Himself on you, for it’s your choice to respond to His invitation. Have you? Are you born again as Jesus taught at John 3:3, 7? Have you repented and confessed your sins and unbelief, trusting in His shed blood sacrifice to save you? Is He your first love, and does your life bear fruit to that?

These are critically important questions that will determine you enduring the times of the end just ahead…or not. Believing and acting upon the testimony of Jesus is the only thing that will save your soul and lead you safely through the seven years of tribulation. Unbelievers do not believe God and perish accordingly; remember Noah’s day and the days of Lot; and ancient Israel at the edge of Canaan; and most of national Israel at Christ’s first advent.

Have you learned to walk by faith in Christ; to deny yourself and take up your own cross daily and follow Him, Luke 9:23? Have you learned to identify and guard against false prophets and false teachers, and lies and deceptions of this world? Do you love Jesus more than any human relationships? Do you love your country more than Christ and His commands? Again, is Christ your first love, because if He is second to anything, yes, anything, you are not worthy of Him as Jesus taught at Matthew 10:34–39. Here, true faith separates believers from unbelievers.

Have you learned to identify deceptions in the church, the one place where you should be able to believe everything that’s taught, but unfortunately cannot? Do you lead your spouse and children in God’s truths of the coming tribulation and how to endure to the end according to Jesus’ Olivet Discourse at Matthew 24? All these are important questions because the time of the end of this age is now upon us. As Jesus promised, even nature is increasingly in travail and upheaval.

An unmistakable prophetic marker of the end-times has overspread America and the world. “An astonishing and horrible thing has been committed in the land: the prophets prophesy falsely, and the priests rule by their own power; and My people love to have it so. But what will you do in the end?” (Jer. 5:30–31). Today unbelief of the truth is popular, but what will people do in the end? God said “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge” (Hos. 4:6). And today there is much “lack of knowledge” among God’s people, and the institutional church is largely responsible.

To whom will they go – the false prophets who led them to disbelieve the testimony of Jesus? The false teachers who led them to put their faith in the traditions of men rather than Christ? To whom will they go? Their “live your best life now” theology will scorn them. Their wealth and prosperity gospel will mock them. Their pre-trib rapture lie will offend them. Their greater love for country than Christ’s commands will haunt them. Truly, to whom will they go for the truth?

Jesus further said of the end-times that “because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold” (Matt. 24:12). This is now a chilling reality all across the world. We see lawlessness in children killing parents; mass school shootings; gang killings in cities; infanticide, otherwise called abortion; corrupt politicians loathe each other, spurring on hatred; corrupt media create fake news; corrupt corporations and banks defraud the people; even Christian televangelists scam their followers for $40 million jets with seed money, and false doctrines in the church.

Global fiscal collapse of nations is also now on the brink. National currencies will soon become worthless as the U.N. seeks the global redistribution of wealth in the implementation of its “2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development”. A global One World “mark” must and will be developed. All this, while Christians are increasingly discriminated against for job opportunities. The world is now uniting against Christians, the “true Jew” (Rom. 2:28–29) and they “will be hated by all nations for My name’s sake” (Matt. 24:9) just as Jesus promised. Are you prepared for that?

Famines will virtually destroy food supplies during the first 3 1/2 years of the tribulation, not to mention the inability of Christians to buy or sell anything in the last 3 1/2 years of the tribulation. But Christians who believed God and prepared accordingly will find their safety and provision by God for those last 3 1/2 years, when “the woman fled into the wilderness, where she has a place prepared by God, that they should feed her there one thousand two hundred and sixty days” (Rev. 12:6). What is your source of knowledge, and what is your source of preparation?

Marlin J. Yoder

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The Time is Short

Friday, May 25, 2018

The time is short and the days are evil. Therefore, “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour” (1 Peter 5:8). Therefore “be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil” (Eph. 6:10–11).

Christ is enthroned at the right hand of God having all authority in heaven and on earth. And to His true saints, to those who by faith believe the testimony of Christ, they now prepare to endure to the end of this age, when they are gathered to Him at His “glorious appearing” (Titus 2:13), at “the first resurrection” (Rev. 20:4–6), “at the last day” (John 6:40), “at the last trumpet” (1 Cor. 15:52), when “the Lord Himself will descend from heaven…with the trumpet of God” (1 Thess. 4:16), when “the kingdoms of this world have become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign forever and ever!” (Rev. 11:15). Even so, come Lord Jesus!

But getting to that last day will not be easy. Here’s why: just as ancient Israel had to face terrifying giants, the seed of Satan, before possessing their Promised Land, so too, we must face Antichrist and 7 years of tribulation. First, we must overcome the beast’s deceptions for 3 1/2 years, then endure his wrath for another 3 1/2 years before possessing our eternal life. It’s the promise of God in Christ and we do well to believe Him and prepare accordingly.

Remember that God said “I am the Lord, I do not change” (Mal. 3:6), and that “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever” (Heb. 13:8), and that “there is no partiality with God” (Rom. 2:11). Even after God provided for them, most of ancient Israel failed their test of faith in God at the edge of Canaan because of those giants, and disbelieving God, perished accordingly. And, “That which has been is what will be, that which is done is what will be done” (Eccl. 1:9).

I have taught for many years that one of the worst satanic hoaxes to be put upon the church is that of a pre-tribulation rapture which has utterly blinded multitudes to the truth. It changes the very nature of God. False teachers have foisted this lie on the church and what’s worse is, most believe them instead of God! The end of this age will be a replay of ancient Israel at the edge of Canaan. Departures from truth since the 19th century and continuing in the 21st lead that process.

Darby’s 19th century pre-trib rapture lie was the grandfather deception that created other lies, causing much truth to fall to the ground. Many are now caught in the ungodly web of the wealth and prosperity gospel; many befriend the world in order to wage war like the world regardless of God’s command that His saints “do not war according to the flesh” (2 Cor. 10:3); many church leaders exalt the woman to offices of authority though God said “I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man, but to be in silence” (1 Tim. 2:12–14); and much more.

But God will prove every jot and tittle of His Word 100% true and infallible. And woe to them, who, like ancient Israel, complained against the Word of the Lord. You see, believing God is the seedbed of how we will endure to the end…or not. The choice is ours. God will not force anyone to believe His Word. Many Christians are like he “who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy; yet he has no root in himself, but endures only for a while. For when tribulation or persecution arises because of the word, immediately he stumbles” (Matt. 13:20–21).

Spiritually, God’s Word crucifies the flesh. Physically, proud flesh is what must be cut away from a wound in order for that wound to heal. The same is true spiritually. The uncircumcised and naturally proud heart must, by the Sword of the Spirit, have the proud flesh of self-rule cut away. Many initially believe, but by giving themselves over to false teachings, deceptions and traditions of men, turn away from the truth, and can subsequently fall away from the faith.

There’s a deceptive teaching in the church that says once one is saved, his or her salvation is sealed, guaranteed, that nothing can cause one to lose their salvation. That sounds good, but it too is a grievous deception. While it’s true that no external force can cause the loss of salvation, one’s personal choice(s) to believe deception(s) can indeed lead to falling away from the faith.

Deception is a very powerful tool for Satan, he’s been using it for millennia. Regarding one’s faith, consider these possibilities just from the Book of 1 Timothy. Some “shipwreck” their faith (1:19); “some will depart from the faith” (4:1); some “have denied the faith” (5:8); some “have cast off their first faith” (5:12); “some have already turned aside after Satan” (5:15); and “some have strayed from the faith” (6:10). Consider the office of Deacon. God commands that such a man must not be “a novice, [new Christian] lest being puffed up with pride he fall into the same condemnation as the devil” (3:6). Now, we know the devil is doomed to eternal destruction!

In much of the institutional church, today, the progressive slide to perdition continues. Sin and unbelief of God’s Word now flaunts itself openly as the gospel is being rewritten to allege that there is no hell. Many now believe that because God is love He saves everybody. Perversions and homosexuality are now accepted by many. A personal holy reverent fear of God is swiftly being abandoned. And this slide to unbelief and perdition began with Satan’s deceptions.

The entire platform upon which Antichrist comes is based in deception. And unless one knows God’s Word whereby deception is revealed, one is indeed susceptible to falling away. Warning! “Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons” (1 Tim. 4:1). Culture-accommodating teachings and today’s entertainment-styled, all-inclusive happy church reveal the truths of 1 Tim 4:1.

The pre-tribulation rapture is a doctrine of demons. It is a seedbed of the soon-coming end-time offense of which Jesus warned at Matt. 24:10. Yet, to this day, false teachers continue deceiving multitudes with this false doctrine for which not a single verse of Scripture can be found! O, but those same multitudes love to believe what tickles their ears. Spiritual discernment of the truth has been exchanged by many for a lie that pleases the unbelieving mind of flesh.

What must be our response to these things? Believe and defend “the testimony of Jesus Christ” (Rev. 1:9). That’s what true Christians do though it crucifies our flesh. By faith we conform our will to God’s Word, not He to ours! God said, “keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life” (Jude 21). Don’t miss our participation and obligation in the faith to keep ourselves in the love of God. We do that by believing Him.

Marlin J. Yoder

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Repeat of Ancient Events

Friday, May 18, 2018

Many Western Christians have a dismissive disinterest in the end-times because they’ve been taught by trusted theologians and false teachers that the seven-year tribulation will have no impact on them; that they’ll be spared from it by a pre-tribulation rapture. But they deceive themselves and their listeners. Consequently, many are unprepared for what’s just ahead.

In Daniel 2, King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon was given a very troubling dream of the four kingdoms that would rule the earth from his day to the end of this age, which was interpreted by the Prophet Daniel. Babylon would be followed by Persia, then Greece, and finally Rome whose rule would have a former and latter reign, the latter being our present day wherein the European Union is now the revived ancient Roman Empire, and is also the seat of Antichrist.

After his dream Nebuchadnezzar had a gold image made of himself ninety feet tall and “set it up in the plain of Dura, in the province of Babylon” (Dan. 3:1), and said, “To you it is commanded, ‘O peoples, nations, and languages, that at the time you hear…all kinds of music, you shall fall down and worship the gold image that Nebuchadnezzar set up; and whoever does not fall down and worship shall be cast immediately into the midst of a burning fiery furnace’” (Dan. 3:4–6).

Consider: Israel was in captivity, and when the time came to “fall down and worship”, all Israel, God’s people, also fell down and worshiped, except for three men. Don’t miss the relevance of this. God’s people had not prepared for this test, nor were they spared the event. But they had a choice to make: believe and honor God or the king of Babylon. And almost all Israel bowed and worshiped the image in order to spare their lives! But today, another image, one far more subtle and deceptive, has been erected over the centuries, an image of Satan’s counterfeit church.

When the prophet “saw a beast rising up out of the sea” (Rev. 13:1), he was seeing the rise of the false church, Satan’s counterfeit church, Roman Catholicism. He saw the seat of the papacy “the great harlot who sits on many waters…arrayed in purple and scarlet…The waters…where the harlot sits, are peoples, multitudes, nations, and tongues” (Rev. 17:1, 4, 15). For centuries now, the beast-image of the end-times has been erected across the world on the guise of being the true church. But Satan’s counterfeit church is what gave rise to the 16th century Reformation.

Will the “image of the beast” (Rev. 13:14–15) be a literal, physical image, because we know Antichrist comes “with all unrighteous deception among those who perish” (2 Thess. 2:10)? An image made of a man like King Nebuchadnezzar’s would not be deceptive to people of common sense…unless…that image could breath and speak. Well, God said: “He [the false prophet] was granted power to give breath to the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak and cause as many as would not worship the image of the beast to be killed” (Rev. 13:15).

To worship the image or be killed was also the same choice set before ancient Israel. This should sound familiar to those who know the history of Roman Catholicism and her brutalities, murders and forced false traditions and beast-system indulgences. Globally, there are about 1.2 billion members of Roman Catholicism, of which 70.4 million reside in the United States. And unless they repent of their worship of Mary, and are born again by faith in Christ alone, will her members not logically be the first to accept her soon-coming mark of the beast?

But today Catholicism’s veneration of the woman’s headship is not alone. By the mid to late 20th century many evangelical churches exalted the woman to offices of headship biblically reserved for men, regardless of God’s command that “I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man, but to be in silence” (1 Tim. 2:12). The result? Another deceptive reason for the growing alliance between Roman Catholicism and the evangelical church!

For two millennia Satan has been about the business of establishing his counterfeit church, for, “where the harlot sits, are peoples, multitudes, nations, and tongues” (Rev. 17:15). In nations, cities, towns and communities nearly everywhere one will find Catholicism. In preparation for the end-times Antichrist’s beast-system is entrenched globally. Are you prepared for its rage?

God has lovingly given us all ample warning. Ignorance will not be an excuse. We have God’s plain Word of truth in our possession. The question is, will we by faith believe the Son of God, or will we prefer tradition-peddling false teachers who now live luxuriously because their pre-trib rapture and wealth and prosperity books, videos and tape series have made them rich!

At the point of mid-tribulation, “the serpent [Satan] spewed water [those with his mark] out of his mouth like a flood after the woman, [“the freewoman” Gal. 4:21–31] that he might cause her to be carried away by the flood. But the earth helped the woman, and the earth opened its mouth and swallowed up the flood which the dragon had spewed out of his mouth. And the dragon was enraged with the woman, and he went to make war with the rest of her offspring, who keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus Christ” (Rev. 12:15–17). Christ foretold this mid-tribulation escape by those “counted worthy”, another way at Luke 17:20–37.

At Rev. 12:15–17, there are two kinds of saints: those who know about the safety and provision of God, and were “counted worthy to escape” (Luke 21:36) at the appointed time, and those who didn’t know and became open game, as it were, for those with the mark of the beast. This is just one of the many reasons why the teaching of the end-times is so critically important at this time. Don’t think there’s nothing to be concerned about, because there is. Your spouse, children, and loved ones need to be taught these preparatory truths.

Antichrist, his church, the false prophet and all who worshiped the image have this end: “Then the beast was captured, and with him the false prophet who worked signs in his presence, by which he deceived those who received the mark of the beast and those who worshiped his image. These two were cast alive into the lake of fire burning with brimstone. And the rest were killed with the sword which proceeded from the mouth of Him who sat on the horse” (Rev. 19:20–21).

But eternal life and glory awaits those who faithfully endure to the end. “And I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was committed to them. Then I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for their witness to Jesus and for the word of God, who had not worshiped the beast or his image, and had not received his mark on their foreheads or on their hands. And they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years…This is the first resurrection. Blessed and holy is he who has part in the first resurrection” (Rev. 20:4–6). May we endure to the first resurrection!

Marlin J. Yoder

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Faithfully Finish The Race

Friday, May 11, 2018

Biblical signs of the end of this age arrived deceptively, but today are shouted from headlines. That “many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall increase” (Dan. 12:4) at the onset of the 20th century was a clarion call from God, was largely lost to pride. It was then that knowledge increased exponentially, and its unrepentant pride spawned massive wars and destruction. Yet, many, even Christians, exchanged the technological, economic, social and health benefits of knowledge for God’s warning. But the beginning of the end was at work. Then came Israel.

Long before the 20th century, Satan created the false church of Roman Catholicism who God called “the great harlot who sits on many waters, with whom the kings of the earth committed fornication, and the inhabitants of the earth were made drunk with the wine of her fornication” (Rev. 17:1–2). John, the revelator, “saw the woman, [the false church] drunk with the blood of the saints and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus” (Rev. 17:6). This is critical to understand.

Today, history teaches us that there’s no entity on earth that has murdered more true Christians than the false church of Roman Catholicism. For centuries, hatred of Christians refusing to bow the knee to the popes seethed from the Vatican. And in 1534 the Jesuit Order of Catholicism was formed, the militant arm of the Vatican that murdered millions who would not bow the knee to the papal throne. Today, the first-ever Jesuit pope is Pope Francis, the head of that false church!

To the great anger of national Jews, Pope Francis made a June 2015 covenant with Palestine, recognizing its statehood, https://www.nytimes.com/2015/05/14/world/middleeast/vatican-to-recognize-palestinian-state-in-new-treaty.html and https://www.timesofisrael.com/vatican-signs-treaty-recognizing-state-of-palestine/ The Jews of Israel, and in fact the whole world, now await Pope Francis’ reciprocal Treaty with Israel to balance the scales of justice. When he does, it will likely be the fulfillment of “a covenant with many” (Dan. 9:27) that begins the tribulation.

“Then he [Antichrist] shall confirm a covenant with many for one week: [meaning seven years] but in the middle of the week [meaning forty-two months later] he shall bring an end to sacrifice and offering” (Dan. 9:27), meaning Antichrist will stop the renewed sacrifices of Judaism’s Old Covenant being practiced in the rebuilt Jewish Temple in Israel, and demand worship of himself.

Since Israel’s rebirth in 1948 the Vatican has portrayed a kinder and gentler, but yet beguiling papal throne in order to gain global religious control. Since his conclave election, Pope Francis has masterfully busied himself doing just that – uniting Christians and other religions to himself, including Islam and Judaism, deceiving the masses on the guise of religious unity – that is, false religious unity. He has successfully endeared himself to millions of non-discerning Christians and leaders of other religions. The race to the end is now on. Largely, Christianity is no longer exclusive, and is even made to appear worse than other religions. Pope Francis has conquered.

Last week I shared this highly relevant 4/25/2018 headline by Charisma News: “Pope Invites Leaders of All Christian Denominations in the Mideast to Peace Summit – The Vatican said the encounter would be an ‘ecumenical meeting for peace’ where the religious leaders would discuss ‘the dramatic situation of the Middle East that afflicts so many brothers and sisters in the faith”.

Understand that Pope Francis has united the world, in fact, conquered world religions to be one under his rule. John said “And I looked, and behold, a white horse. He who sat on it had a bow; and a crown was given to him, and he went out conquering and to conquer” (Rev. 6:2). This rider has a bow, but no arrows, indicating a non-militant conqueror. Pope Francis has, non-militantly, conquered world religions, preparing for a global Vatican-rule during the seven-year tribulation.

Several months ago I provided links to articles that prove the power of Pope Francis to unite Catholicism and Christianity. The number of high profile pastors and leaders deceived by Pope Francis is astonishing, when, upon their visit to the Vatican were given computer thumb drives of a spiritual message of unity delivered by Pope Francis and then replayed for those pastors’ congregations. This is prophetically amazing. Many have now exchanged the truth for a lie.

The race to the end has indeed begun, and my prayer for you and your loved ones is that you are prepared in the truths of Christ Jesus. The meeting “of all Christian denominations in the Middle East” with Pope Francis is scheduled for July 7, 2018, according to Charisma News 4/25/2018.

The need for a peace covenant is the imminent war footing on which Israel and Iran now find themselves. This 5/3/2018 headline by Bloomberg.com says it well: “Israel and Iran on Path to War as Mideast Tinderbox Awaits Spark – There’s a growing risk that one is about to break out in Syria, pitting Israel against Iran. The Islamic Republic’s forces are entrenching there, after joining the fight to prop up President Bashar al-Assad. The Jewish state, perceiving a direct threat on its border, is subjecting them to an escalating barrage of airstrikes”.

That conflict will escalate to the utter destruction of Damascus, Syria when it “will cease from being a city, and it will be a ruinous heap” (Isa. 17:1). An event such as this would cause nations of the whole world to demand a peace agreement. And, of course, Pope Francis will rise to meet the occasion. He would naturally have some opposition, but ultimately…“all the world marveled and followed the beast” (Rev. 13:3).

Increasingly, now, the true Christian is viewed as the obstacle to global peace and unity. In the eyes of the world Jesus is too exclusive saying “No one comes to the Father except through Me” (John 14:6). The popes of Roman Catholicism have for centuries forced the belief that they hold the keys to eternal life. And today, that remains unchanged. And God said “That which has been [here, think Vatican murders] is what will be” (Eccl. 1:9). It’s not so far off, but there’s time to prepare – to be part of “the freewoman” (Gal. 4:21–31) when at the middle of the tribulation, she “fled into the wilderness, where she has a place prepared by God, that they should feed her there one thousand two hundred and sixty days” (Rev. 12:6). Therefore, “pray always that you may be counted worthy to escape all these things that will come to pass” (Luke 21:36). The time is near.

Marlin J. Yoder

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“and then the end will come”

Friday, May 4, 2018

In God’s sovereign foreknowledge He has identified numerous events that must first take place before Christ gathers the saints at “the first resurrection” (Rev. 20:4–6), “at the last day” (John 6:40), not meaning, however, that we can know “that day and hour” (Matt. 24:36). One of those events is Jesus’ teaching that “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” (Matt. 24:14).

In view of Matt. 24:14, some, even pastors, believe there is really no need to teach the end-times because the Church is nowhere near completing the task of preaching the gospel “in all the world as a witness to all the nations”. But that shortsightedness misses the truth wherein the Holy Spirit said that “the gospel which you heard…was preached [note the past tense] to every creature under heaven, of which I, Paul, became a minister” (Col. 1:23).

The widespread preaching of the gospel began immediately after Pentecost when “about three thousand souls were added to them” (Acts 2:41). It was then much later when Paul said by the Spirit that the gospel “was preached…to every creature under heaven”. So, just because man is historically unfaithful in the generational continuance of the gospel, does not mean the gospel was not at one time already preached “to every creature under heaven”, because it was.

Consider ancient Israel’s neglect of God’s Word, a people “who have received the law by the direction of angels and have not kept it” (Acts 7:53), a people who, generation after generation forsook the continuance of God’s Word. Likewise, the same generational neglect accompanies Christianity wherein many have carelessly failed to generationally pass down God’s Word.

And believers comprising the true Church of this late hour which numbers “few” (Matt. 7:14) as compared to the global population, will never accomplish preaching the gospel to every nation, tribe and tongue. As God promised, that task will only be accomplished by God’s angelic host.

Here’s how. At some point during the great tribulation, during the last 3 1/2 years of this age, the Holy Spirit said by the apostle, “Then I saw another angel flying in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach to those who dwell on the earth – to every nation, tribe, tongue, and people – saying with a loud voice, ‘Fear God and give glory to Him, for the hour of His judgment has come’” (Rev. 14: 6–7). Where the Church is unable, God is limitlessly able.

Jesus said “with God all things are possible” (Matt. 19:26). But the preaching of the gospel “to every nation, tribe, tongue, and people” will not be accomplished by Christians, we are too few. But with God, however, all things are possible, and in that context He will send forth His angel at the appointed time to preach the gospel “to those who dwell on the earth – to every nation, tribe, tongue and people”. God will get this done, not the Church, and then the end will come.

The world needs the undiluted preaching of the whole gospel, not just select portions that sound good to man. The Spirit reminds us, “Behold, the days are coming, says the Lord God, that I will send a famine on the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the Lord. They shall wander from sea to sea, and from north to east; they shall run to and fro, seeking the word of the Lord, but shall not find it” (Amos 8:11–12).

That famine arrived by evidence of 400 years of silence from God in the intertestamental period. In secondary fulfillment of Amos 8:11–12, the world is now experiencing yet another famine “of hearing the words of the Lord”, in that, much preaching and teaching today glorifies man and not Christ. God’s Word has largely been diluted by false teachers and culture-accommodating men and women who need to have their own hearts pierced by the “two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit” (Heb. 4:12) rather than seeking the praise of man.

Consequently, many people in the corporate-styled institutional church are spiritually starved, and they “run to and fro”, going from book to book, conference to conference, and program to program, looking for something, anything to satisfy the hunger in the depths of their soul…and they’re not finding it, for much of what they hear is disingenuous fluff, without repentance and without self-denial to take up one’s own cross, the very hallmark of being a follower of Christ.

The gospel has suffered loss due to generational neglect and a diminishing love for God. But if we love God and fellowman, we must each use the talents God has given us, and minister those truths to “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins” (Acts 2:38), and teach the coming judgment and redemption of God – judgment for the unbeliever and redemption for the believer who actually believes Christ and prepares to endure to the end as Jesus taught.

The preaching of the gospel of the kingdom “to every nation, tribe, tongue and people”, will not be accomplished by the Church, but will be accomplished by God. Consider, there are peoples, tribes and tongues right here in America, the nation from which the gospel has gone forth more than any other, who have never heard the gospel. If it is so here in America, and it is, then on what basis shall the Christian expect to fulfill Matthew 24:14? Only God can fulfill it.

While we are commanded to fulfill the great commission of Matt. 28:19–20 to the best of our ability, we should not think we can accomplish that which is God’s sovereign work to perform. But what is imminently before us is the time of the end, and Antichrist’s seven-year tribulation. And a vital part of the gospel includes those end-time truths, especially for this final generation, because Jesus said “But he who endures to the end shall be saved” (Matt. 24:13).

Now this highly relevant 4/25/2018 end-time headline from Charisma News: “Pope Invites Leaders of All Christian Denominations in the Mideast to Peace Summit”. I have taught for years that the Vatican is the final beast-kingdom of Dan. 2, and that Pope Francis, its current head, will draft the peace “covenant with many” (Dan. 9:27) which begins the seven-year tribulation. I’ll share more on this subject next Friday.

Marlin J. Yoder

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“you will be hated by all nations”

Friday, April 27, 2018

That the gospel of Jesus Christ “living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart” (Heb. 4:12) is increasingly under attack, is an understatement. It began 2000 years ago, it’s increased in the last century, and will soon be totally rewritten.

Satan knows his time is short. His gradual deception has sought to blend the culture with the “two-edged sword” of the gospel that exposes the heart and soul to its great need of conversion new birth. And those more interested in self-preservation and protecting traditions of men and pleasing people, rather than preserving the sword of the gospel, are participant with him.

In my early years of Christian life I assumed, as do most, that what came from the pulpit was whole truth. I trusted the pulpit. It didn’t occur to me that truth would be twisted to satisfy man. It was disturbing to learn that what I once thought was whole truth, turned out to be a deceptive lie from the enemy. That’s when I discovered that a half-truth equals a whole lie.

But for many years now I praise God that the Holy Spirit set me on the path of wisdom, discernment and courage to become increasingly Berean in my search for whole truth, to break free from the status quo of denominational deceptions and traditions, and set my face like flint “toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus” (Phil. 3:14).

Discerning the signs of the times and recognizing that we are unmistakably in the end-times, in fact, in the final generation of this present age, is not a comfortable message and is resisted by many professing Christians. But the whole truth, whether believed or not, will indeed march ahead with “the first resurrection” (Rev. 20:4–6), “at the last day” (John 6:40), in full view.

In addition to the end of this age being marked by Jesus’ promise that “you will hear of wars and rumors of wars”, He also said that “Then they [unbelievers] will deliver you up to tribulation and kill you, and you will be hated by all nations for My name’s sake” (Matt. 24:9). At the most elementary level of Christian faith, this requires an intentional Holy Spirit-led preparation.

Being wise in Christ and knowing Satan’s devices, we know that he will deceive through false doctrines or traditions to remove one’s Spirit-led preparation to endure tribulation persecutions. But Jesus said “He who endures to the end shall be saved” (Matt. 24:13). That process begins by believing and personalizing the testimony of Jesus Christ for the times of the end.

Douglas MacKinnon asks, “How long will I be allowed to remain a Christian?” in his 4/21/2018 article by FOX News. MacKinnon observes that, “In various parts of the Middle East, there is a genocidal cleansing of Christians being carried out. Women, men, and their young children are being slaughtered because of their faith and world leaders and most of the media turn their backs in bored indifference.” Believe it or not, the same persecution is coming to America.

MacKinnon continues, “Here in the United States, Christians and Christianity are mocked, belittled, smeared and attacked by some on a daily basis. This is a bigoted practice that is not only increasing exponentially, but is being encouraged and sanctioned by a number on the left.”

MacKinnon further observes, “A high school football coach is fired for taking a knee in prayer. A teacher is fired for giving a Bible to a student who requested it. A Marine is cursed at and then court-martialed for not removing a Bible verse from her computer. Another Bible verse posted by sailors in a military hospital is labeled “extremism”.

MacKinnon rhetorically intones what’s coming to America. “Will we soon have to meet with fellow Christians in secret? Will we have to whisper our beliefs from the shadows? Will those Christians with “traditional” beliefs lose their jobs and livelihoods if discovered? As more and more of the mainstream media, entertainment, academia and the hi-tech world continue to purge or discriminate against Christians, what future jobs will be open to young Christians?”

The answer to MacKinnon’s question, “How long will I be allowed to remain a Christian”, depends on his commitment to Christ. I hope he endures faithfully to the end. It must be all or nothing. We must not be like the one who “has no root in himself, and endures only for a while. For when tribulation or persecution arises because of the word, immediately he stumbles” (Matt. 13:21). A compromised, half-truth faith in Christ will not endure to the end.

Jesus said, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me” (Luke 9:23). That is not received well in the Western church accustomed to its war-bought freedoms that promotes people living as they will, rather than by the will of God in Christ. But Jesus said, “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven” (Matt. 7:21).

It hasn’t reached America, yet, but severe persecution for one’s professed faith in Christ is coming. And no one will be spared by the hopeless pre-tribulation rapture tradition, which is another deceit taught by many churches. In fact, self-consolation in that false tradition is the seedbed of the offense to come that will take many in hatred and betrayal, see Matt. 24:10.

It should not come as a surprise that Jesus said of the good news of the gospel, that, “If you were of the world, the world would love its own. Yet because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you. Remember the word that I said to you. A servant is not greater than his master. If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you. If they kept My word, they will keep yours also” (John 15:19–20).

This is why the Vatican and its popes murdered tens of millions of Christians in its efforts to force papal worship, which led to the Reformation. That loss was not forgotten by the Vatican which is now set to make its global comeback when Antichrist, who comes from the Vatican, the heart of the revived ancient Roman Empire, to crush and destroy saints with an iron fist.

The arrival of Antichrist is what’s imminent, not the rapture. And don’t let anyone tell you that we are not to look for Antichrist, because Jesus said, “Therefore, when you see the ‘abomination of desolation’, [Antichrist] spoken of by Daniel the prophet” (Matt. 24:15). Have you prepared in the knowledge and truth of God to stand firm in the face of coming tribulation and persecution?

Marlin J. Yoder

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“wars and rumors of wars”

Friday, April 20, 2018

For many years now, based on my personal study of God’s prophetic Word for the end-times, I believed and stated that the destruction of Damascus, Syria would be a precursor to the rise of Antichrist and start of the seven-year tribulation. Today, I maintain that belief.

Last Friday morning at about 6:30 AM I published TheFridayLetter.com entitled “The burden against Damascus”, with specific focus on God’s prophetic Word of Isaiah 17:1 foretelling the destruction of Damascus. Less than eighteen hours later the U.S., the U.K and France rained down over one hundred missiles on specific targets in the city of Damascus, Syria.

Russia and Iran, who support Basher al-Assad’s murderous Syrian government, are outraged. Russian President Vladimir Putin has vowed a response which remains to be seen. But it will not be much longer before we see the prophesied destruction of Damascus, making it “a ruinous heap” causing it to “cease from being a city” (Isa. 17:1). The warring violence of nations will escalate, and will culminate with a nuclear detonation in Damascus making it uninhabitable.

If you personalize and act upon the parable of “the fig tree” (Matt. 24:32–35), identifying the last generation of this age, based on Israel’s rebirth of May 1948, you are wise. For, therein you have spiritual eyes that see and ears that hear Christ’s warning of the destruction in the end-times.

Jesus said of the end-times, “And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not troubled; for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be famines, pestilences, and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of sorrows” (Matt. 24:6–8).

The twentieth century is marked by its continual wars. More war-torn death and carnage took place in the twentieth century than any other in the history of mankind. Therefore, many of the warnings of “wars and rumors of wars” have already been fulfilled. Wars are now so normal that many are insensitively numb to Satan’s hate and destruction of mankind made in God’s image.

Notice carefully that Jesus said “you will hear of wars and rumors of wars”, with my emphasis on the Word “hear”. This is important, for true saints only “hear” of wars, they do not covenant themselves to the ungodly world for war, nor participate in them. Saints are commanded to love God first, and then also our neighbor as ourselves, which fulfills the law and the prophets. “For though we [saints] walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds” (2 Cor. 10:3–4).

In the times of the end, wars will increase – tribulation wars that will literally wipe out fifty percent of the world’s population. How can the one born again and washed in the blood of the Lamb agree with the ungodly world for such destructive work? The destruction of redeemable mankind is the work of Satan. Jesus said, “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven” (Matt. 5:43–45). Don’t overlook that conclusion.

At the Fourth Seal, “power was given to them [Death and Hades] over a fourth of the earth, to kill with the sword, with hunger, with death, and by the beasts of the earth” (Rev. 6:8). And at the Sixth Trumpet, “the four angels, who had been prepared for the hour and day and month and year, were released to kill a third of mankind. Now the number of the army of the horseman was two hundred million” (Rev. 9:15–16). First, a fourth, then another third of mankind are killed.

Dear saints, we must decide now who we’ll defend: Christ, or this temporal evil nation. Do not delay in preparing until those days are upon us. For, now, we are ambassadors of Christ, 2 Cor. 5:20, and not this evil nation. Now, we are first citizens of heaven, Phil. 3:20, and not this evil world. Now, we are ambassadors of Christ who live holy, loving God and fellowman.

God will mete out the reward of the wicked and unbelieving at the appointed time. It is not the role of any Christian to be judge, jury or executioner. Nor dare we lean to the warring practice of ancient Israel in the Old Testament as justification. God commanded ancient Israel to destroy the nations of giants, the seed of Satan, in the land of Canaan, which Israel was not faithful in doing. Thus, Israel, repeatedly fell into idolatry, and was taken captive to sin, unbelief and judgment.

The Christian is to: “Repay no one evil for evil…Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, ‘Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,’ says the Lord…Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good” (Romans 12:17, 19, 21).

If one’s faith is truly in Christ, being born again by His Spirit, that one will then agree with the Lord God who said, “So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth; it shall not return to Me void, but it shall accomplish what I please. And it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it” (Isa. 55:11). “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself” (Luke 10:27).

Therefore, do not even consider making a warring covenant with the world, for it destroys our fellowman for whom Christ died. War among nations is the very dark work of Satan, and not the work of Christ. Heed the Word of the Lord, saying, “And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him” (Col. 3:17).

Jesus said, “you will hear of wars and rumors of wars”. He said what He meant, and meant what He said. And nowhere, in the New Covenant is there even an inference that saints covenant with the ungodly for the warring destruction of our fellowman. Nowhere. Therefore, let the Word of the Lord God and His Holy Spirit arise within you, to lead you in these critical end-time truths.

Marlin J. Yoder

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“The burden against Damascus”

Friday, April 13, 2018

The Middle East has been volatile since the 1948 rebirth of Israel, but there is clearly a renewed military and civil violence that puts Damascus, Syria in the crosshairs of destruction. That’s not unfounded speculation, but is God’s prophetic truth that accompanies the time of the end.

Though Damascus, Syria is the longest continuously inhabited city in the world, its destruction is prophetically reserved for the end-times. Contextually, God said, “The burden against Damascus. Behold, Damascus will cease from being a city, and it will be a ruinous heap” (Isa. 17:1).

Historically, in conventional warfare ruined cities are rebuilt. But Damascus “will cease from being a city”, reasonably indicating that a nuclear holocaust will cause it to be an uninhabitable “ruinous heap”. Nuclear strikes would certainly disqualify it from “being a city”.

Nuclearized nations are now in the Damascus region: the United States is aiding civilian rebels fighting against Bashar al-Assad’s government; Russia and Iran aid the Assad regime believed to have recently killed 40 people with poisonous gas, (Source: Fox News); and Israel is also blamed for a recent air strike on a major airfield near Damascus.

Civilian and military tensions are rapidly escalating. This should not surprise we who believe God’s Word for the end-time. This conflict could lead to the war of Revelation 6:3–4, wherein the second rider on the red horse of the apocalypse is given “a great sword” with which he takes “peace from the earth, and that people should kill one another”.

U.S. President Donald Trump vows a response for Assad again using poisonous gas, while Russian president, Vladimir Putin, promises that any military response by the U.S. will be met with an equal military force. Both are strong-willed men, and unyielding to their convictions, while Iran and Israel, in the meantime, are exchanging their own militant threats.

The situation in Damascus is very serious. This conflict will not be diplomatically negotiated for another generation to resolve. It belongs to and will reach its prophetic fulfillment in this present generation…the last generation of this age. The question is, however, will this be recognized for what it is, or will it be considered as just another unfortunate war to which people born in the war-torn twentieth century have become so accustomed?

The twentieth century has seen more death and destruction than any other. In fact, many have become so desensitized to wars and their death tolls, that it’s become the normal way of life. Warring nations have become a blinding status quo deception of the end-times. Jesus warned, that, as the days of Noah and Lot were, so too will the days of the Son of Man be.

Several deceptively-blinding characteristics of the days of Noah and Lot were this: warnings of imminent destruction was preached by a few, but ignored by most…just like today; violence marked their cultures…just like today; genetically modified humans were real…just like today; homosexuality and immorality was the rule of the day…just like today; false teachers were popular…just like today; and the normalcy of spiritual life meant that God’s love approved of their violence, unbelief and sin…just like today.

Fathers, husbands and Bible teachers, what are you teaching your families and loved ones? Do you see the signs of the end-times that are now gathering like storm clouds? Is your discernment based in the knowledge of the Word of the Lord and His Holy Spirit, or does the culture govern? Are you preparing those in your charge for the very difficult tribulation times in the near future?

WWIII will likely begin in the Middle East. In fact, “War will continue until the end, and desolations have been decreed” (Dan. 9:26 NIV). But have you prepared your loved ones and those in your care in the Biblical truths of what’s coming? Pray and act now, for you have only a little time.

Marlin J. Yoder

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“But now Christ is risen”

Friday, April 6, 2018

God loves mankind whom He made in His own image, and sent His Son Jesus Christ to suffer the penalty of death to redeem fallen mankind. Herein is God’s love revealed to all who by grace through faith believe Christ, who believe upon His death for the remission of their sins, and also necessarily believe upon His resurrection – these are foundational truths to salvation faith.

But Satan and his fallen angels are the enemies of mankind. They come only to steal, kill and destroy. They inspire lies and proud religious deceptions; they create deceits that ensnare and wars that destroy man. And in this present age Satan is allowed to prosper until God wins the victory for us “at the last day” (John 6:40), at “the last trumpet” (1 Cor. 15:51–52), at “the first resurrection” (Rev. 20:4–6), when “the Lord Himself will descend from heaven” (1 Thess. 4:16).

Many argue against the truth that Satan is allowed to prosper in this present age, but God’s Word says that, “the same horn [Antichrist] was making war against the saints, and prevailing against them, until the Ancient of Days came, and a judgment was made in favor of the saints of the Most High, and the time came for the saints to possess the kingdom” (Dan. 7:21–22).

If you are a saint of the Most High, then Dan. 7:21–22 applies to you. Revelation reveals the same, saying, “It was granted to him [Antichrist] to make war with the saints and to overcome them. And authority was given him over every tribe, tongue and nation” (Rev. 13:7). These truths, however, are disbelieved by most Christians who have been taught the unbiblical pre-tribulation rapture. Sadly, they believe that these Scriptures have no application to them.

But that’s exactly what Satan wants. The demonic pre-trib rapture narrative has been created by Satan to make unfruitful many Scriptures that teach believers for the times of the end. But many, having become spiritually blinded by false teachers, believe their false narrative as it pleases the undiscerning mind of flesh. Ultimately, this is Satan’s attack on the resurrection of saints.

The foundational truth of the Christian faith is the resurrection of Jesus Christ; for, “if Christ is not risen, then our preaching is empty and your faith is also empty…For if the dead do not rise, then Christ is not risen. And if Christ is not risen, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins! Then also those who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men the most pitiable” (1 Cor. 15:14, 16–19).

Therefore, since the resurrection of Christ is so vital for Christian truth, it should not come as a surprise that Satan attacked not only the resurrection of Christ, but also the promised resurrection of redeemed saints “at the last day” (John 6:44). It’s clear that the Serpent initially struck at the resurrection of Christ when Roman soldiers bore false witnesses saying Christ’s body was stolen from the tomb, though His tomb was well-guarded.

When that false report didn’t stop the advance of the gospel and truth of Christ’s resurrection, Satan inspired false teachers in the first century church “saying that the resurrection is already past; and they overthrow the faith of some” (2 Tim. 2:18). Mission accomplished! The report of an early resurrection caused some to lose hope in the “the blessed hope” (Titus 2:13), and their faith in Christ was overthrown; they were overcome with hopelessness! It will happen again.

That’s Satan’s specialty, and looking to the end of this age he devised a plot to offend, to cause an overthrow of faith in Christ and the promised resurrection. It began in about 1830 with John Darby’s pre-tribulation rapture. The undiscerning took Satan’s bait – being self-deceived and having learned from other false teachers who also listened to deceiving spirits and fables.

It should be no surprise, then, that Satan, looking to the end of this present age, attacked “the blessed hope”, the resurrection of the righteous by creating yet another “early” resurrection he called the pre-tribulation rapture. The lie consists in saying that Christ gathers His saints before the tribulation even begins – that it occurs seven years before the last day, though Christ “must remain in heaven until the time comes for God to restore everything” (Acts 3:21 NIV).

That deception is now widespread and the hook of deceit is set, as many Christians hope in a hopeless lie destined to cause great offense when the tribulation and Antichrist are revealed and they find themselves right here on earth to be confronted by Antichrist in the tribulation. Will the lie be discovered by Christians before it’s too late? Will those who believe the hopeless pre-trib rapture lie be strong enough in the Lord to overcome the offense, and endure to the end?

Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me” (John 14:6). So, the question is this, “If Jesus is the truth, (and He is) and He said He gathers His elect saints “Immediately after the tribulation”, how is it that many so-called Christians do not believe that that truth applies to them? The answer is simple – Satan has caused his lie and deception of unbelief to prosper! Satan’s lie promises an easier end, and many believe him.

False prophets prevail today just as they prevailed in ancient Israel. They regularly rejected the true prophets of God, and more often than not believed false prophets. But you and I are tasked with discerning false prophets and teachers, for God said, “That which has been is what will be, that which is done is what will be done, and there is nothing new under the sun” (Eccl. 1:9).

“But now Christ is risen from the dead, and has become the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. For since by man came death, by Man also came the resurrection of the dead” (1 Cor. 15:20–21). How do you suppose Christ feels about the fact that millions who profess Him, disbelieve His Words for the time of the end? Knowing His suffering and resurrection, how can one disbelieve Christ who said He is “the truth”? For many, He’s very obviously not “the truth”.

The Spirit said through Paul “that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; nor does corruption inherit incorruption. Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed – in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed” (1 Cor. 15:50–52).

Jesus said, “this is the will of Him who sent Me, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in Him may have everlasting life; and I will raise him up [in the resurrection] at the last day” (John 6:40). For emphasis and driving home the point that the resurrection of the righteous dead occurs “at the last day”, Jesus repeats that phrase twice more in verses 44 and 54. Do you believe Him?

Marlin J. Yoder

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