EndTime Issues ...

Why We're Getting Close to Christ's Coming

A Sign that We are Getting Close

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A Sign that We are Getting Close

 
Introduction
 
When the Genesis creation was complete, God had crafted two beautiful institutions. Beyond the physical creations, which included Adam and Eve, He introduced these wonderful gifts as “intangibles,” distinctly to preserve the “family.”

  1. Sabbath – the sacred “seventh” – time to nurture the sacred man-God friendship
  2. Marriage – between a man and a woman – ordained to elevate the holiness of sharing

God earmarked each of these with an aura of sacredness. Through a “test” tree, both “relationship ties” could be threatened.

  • When man fell through the warped genius of Satan, the human and human–divine bonds were tarnished.
  • Satan had successfully introduced relationship impediments to those “intangibles.”
  • He then purposed to redefine the meanings of the Sabbath and marriage – widening man’s separation from God.

The Flood Saga – Satan Scores Again
 
Likely, in the neighborhood of 150 years before the Flood, heaven made special contact with Noah (a man “who walked with God” – Genesis 6:9). It was a cognitive message from, clearly, an emotional God.

  • The historical record notes: “And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. And it repented the LORD that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart” (Genesis 6:5-6).
  • He prophesied that earth’s living creatures would be destroyed (Genesis 6:7). The curse catalyst related to man’s evil.
  • Through the KJV of Biblical chronology, that Deluge came 1659 years after Creation.

Man’s great wickedness knew only the bounds of his imagination. Evil was unrelenting. God abhorred that evil and reactively destroyed man – save for four married couples.

  • Luke fast-forwards that history and notes: “And as it was in the days of Noe, so shall it be also in the days of the Son of man…. Likewise also as it was in the days of Lot; they did eat, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they builded” (Luke 17:26, 28).
  • Jesus portrays that their lives continued as usual until destruction and desolation came.
  • At the end of time that “life style” of Noah’s and Lot’s days will echo their God-abhorred wickedness.

Twice recorded, Jesus said that those civilizations characterized planet earth at the time Jesus (the Son of man) would come (Matthew 24:37, Luke 17:26).
 
Defining the Wickedness of those Eras
 
In the Flood record there is a paucity of specifics regarding man’s behavior except for “violence” (Genesis 6:11, 13). There are, however, ancient Jewish writings that describe the pre-Flood civilization. For Sodom, the Biblical records are extensive. These two sources must be reviewed. Together, they provide a good resume of what “cultural warning” one should observe today.
 
Ancient Jewish Sources:
 
The Talmud is the written record of oral Jewish tradition. Conservative (Orthodox) Jewish leaders accept these writings as authoritative. Two ancient Jewish centers began to work on collecting and organizing those old oral traditions – the scholars in the Jerusalem area and those in the Babylonian area. This intense research and analysis began after the destruction of the Temple in 70 A.D. Two separate works emerged:

  1. Jerusalem Talmud (Talmud Yerushalmi)
  2. Babylonian Talmud (Talmud Bavli)[1]

The Jerusalem Talmud never reached the detail and quality of the Babylonian because of the acceleration of anti-Semitism, which lasted through the end of the 4th century. Thus, the influence of the Babylonian Talmud has been invaluable. It was completed somewhere between 500 and 700 A.D.

  • That Talmud reflects rabbinic thought, including interpretive views of the Scripture, dating back to approximately 1000 B.C. (the time of Samuel and King David).
  • This has provided helpful insight into their thinking about Noah’s day that is riveting.

Christian psychiatrist Jeffrey Satimover, who holds an M.D. and three Ph.D. degrees, wrote a book entitled Homosexuality and the Politics of Truth.[2]
 
He had done detailed research into the Babylonian Talmud and concluded:

  • Other than today, there was only one time in history when marriage between the same sexes was a cultural norm.
  • It wasn’t in Sodom and Gomorrah – though homosexuality was rampant there. Nor was it ancient Rome, Greece or Babylon.
  • It was practiced during the days of Noah.
  • The Talmud relates this issue as the “final behavior that led to the Flood.”[3]

SperoRabbi Aryeh Spero (Canton, Ohio), theologian, political and social commentator and author of Push Back: Reclaiming our American Judeo-Christian Spirit,[4] agrees with Jeffrey Satimover:

  • Before the Flood people actually began to write marriage contracts between the same sexes.
  • It was more than homosexuality; it was defiance of the marriage institution established at Creation that was holy.
  • These contracts gave cultural sanction to inappropriate marriages.
  • This is why God said, “I have to start all over.”[5]

Just as it was in the days of Noah, so too it will be in the days of the Son of Man. People were eating, they were drinking, they were marrying, they were being given in marriage – right up to the day Noah entered the ark. Then the flood came and destroyed them all (Luke 17:26-27 – NET).

  • The issue of marriage, therefore, before the days of Noah takes on new concern.
  • The current “gay marriage” trends are also “legalizing” that bond.
  • Thus, cultural “contracts” between the same sexes is mimicking the antediluvian world!

Christ also suggested in that Lukian record, addressing Lot’s day, that it will be a terminus sign related to Christ’s coming.
 
The Sins of Sodom
 
“But the men of Sodom were wicked and sinners before the LORD exceedingly” (Genesis 13:13).

  • God’s reaction: “And the LORD said, Because the cry of Sodom and Gomorrah is great, and because their sin is very grievous; I will go down now, and see whether they have done altogether according to the cry of it, which is come unto me; and if not, I will know” (Genesis 18:20-21). (Highly symbolic of God’s judicial concern)
  • The outcome:

    “Then the LORD rained upon Sodom and upon Gomorrah brimstone and fire from the LORD out of heaven” (Genesis 19:24).

    “Even as Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire” (Jude 1:7).

    “And turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrha into ashes condemned them with an overthrow, making them an ensample unto those that after should live ungodly” (II Peter 2:6).

What wickedness brought the utter annihilation of those cities and their inhabitants?

  1. Homosexuality:

    “Before they could lie down to sleep, all the men – both young and old, from every part of the city of Sodom – surrounded the house. They shouted to Lot, ‘Where are the men who came to you tonight? Bring them out to us so we can have sex with them!’” (Genesis 19:4-5 – NET).

    Annotation from the NET Bible: “The Hebrew verb … (yada’, ‘to know’) is used here in the sense of ‘to lie with’ or ‘to have sex with’ (as in Gen 4:1). That this is indeed the meaning is clear from Lot’s warning that they not do so wickedly.”
     
  2. Greed and Pride:

    ‘Now this was the sin of your sister Sodom: She and her daughters were arrogant, overfed and unconcerned; they did not help the poor and needy. They were haughty and did detestable things before me. Therefore I did away with them as you have seen (Ezekiel 16:49-50 – NIV).

Therefore, the collective sins of Noah’s and Lot’s (Abraham’s) day were:

  • Homosexuality
  • Institutionalized homosexual marriages
  • Greed and pride
  • Violence

Cultural Normalization of Homosexuality – Our Day
 
During the 1960s and 1970s the loosening of moral norms took a major step forward within heterosexual behavior.

  • The Judeo-Christian values began to socially fade.
  • A redefined norm, embracing sensory behavior, came as multiculturalism rose.
  • Then the marketing of feelings emerged – as a cultural “right.”
  • “Virtue” began to be perceived through emotional eyes.

Once “emotional rights” became a key route to social relating, it was cuturally promoted through the media. The imagination suddenly became the boundary of behavior. Then this “right” was introduced into the arena of “civil law.” The homosexual movement followed and moved into the “public space.”
 
Satan’s strategy began to mature when gay activists Marshall Kirk and Hunter Madsen published After the Ball: How America Will Conquer Its Fear and Hatred of Gays in the 90’s.[6]
 
Their promotional ideas:

  • Talk about gays and gayness as loudly and as often as possible
  • Portray gays as victims, not as aggressive challengers
  • Give protectors a just cause
  • Make gays look good
  • Make the victimizers look bad
  • Increasingly use the major media

To these activist directives was added the projection of guilt onto anyone who questioned homosexual behavior. They were to be seen as intolerant, homophobes, not culturally inclusive, rejecting people and not socially sensitive.
 
Psychologically, projecting guilt creates doubt about one’s personal convictions:

  • “Maybe I’ve judged these people too harshly just because they’re different.”
  • “Maybe two lesbians could make each other happy if they were married.”
  • “After all, heterosexual couples have lots of problems.”[7]

The great American experiment that had been so successful with its moral and legal fiber based on Judeo-Christian values began to crumble. To help defend the heterosexual “norm” Congress passed and President Bill Clinton signed the “Defense of Marriage Act,” September 1, 1996.

  • June, 2013, the United States Supreme Court, in a 5-4 decision struck that law down!
  • It was unconstitutional! It “denied the Fifth Amendment’s protection of equal liberty.” (Justice Anthony Kennedy).
  • That judicial decision went against the wishes of the majority of Americans.
  • That was a significant ruling. Against the “will of the people” means that leaders in government could easily “rule” by tyranny and by simply appealing to the “common good”! Those in the elitist positions of government have set the stage for the coercion predicted from the United States in Revelation 13.

Though the court’s ruling did not define the constitutionality of gay marriage, it legally permitted it. From Air Force One, President Barak Obama phoned two gay couples who fought that case to the Supreme Court: “We are proud of you guys.”[8]
 
Devastating had been a major article published by Time Magazine October 2005: “The Battle over Gay Teens.”

  • It was nothing more than cultural propaganda for gays and favoring such relationships in teens.
  • By the time the court ruled, homosexuality had moved from having cultural acceptance to being socially pervasive as a civil right.
  • It has now moved into the state legislative arena, legalizing “gay marriages.”

The Battle Lines
 
Forty years ago the behavior of homosexuals was detestable. Today, both homosexual liberties and gay marriage issues are marginally rejected. Sex “education” has become provocative. World Net Daily reported in 2013 that Linden Avenue Middle School in Red Hook, NY, forced all the girls to give each other a lesbian kiss as part of their training. The School District Superintendent, Paul Finch, said that it focused on “improving culture, relationships, communication and self-perceptions.”[9] As this is being written, California public schools will be promoting a “Day of Silence” for homosexuality. All students are to honor this in sympathy of the rights of gays![10]
 
Though the cry from the gay community is to embrace reality, tolerance and diversity, they are not tolerant of and strongly resist those with Bible-based mores by doing everything to undermine them.
 
Brendan Eich, CEO of the Internet giant Mozella, donated in 2008 toward the California Proposition 8 cause to uphold marriage as the union between a man and a woman. His gay sympathizing employees called for his resignation. He resigned March, 2014.
 
Yet, Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon.com, donated 2.5 million to redefine marriage in Washington State in 2012. The media celebrated. Howard Schultz, CEO of Starbucks, is an avid supporter of homosexual marriage. He lashed out at opposition in a shareholder’s meeting March, 2013.
 
Other companies supporting homosexual marriage include Microsoft, Expedia, Budweiser, HBO Smirnoff, Kenneth Cole, Levi’s, Nordstrom, Kraft and Google.[11]
 
Adding to the turmoil, World Vision of America announced on March 25, 2014, that it would now employ homosexually married individuals. Then, adding kindling to the fire, Pope Francis suggested that the Vatican was open to “gay unions” (stopping short of endorsing matrimony).[12]
 
One “Sane” Voice

Orthodox Patriarch of Moscow and Russia, Kirill I sees the recognition of same-sex unions of Western countries as a “very dangerous apocalyptic symptom.” “We face enormous temptations when countries start approving sin and codifying it into law in order to justify it.”
 
The Patriarch spoke out in a Sunday service in the Kazan Cathedral in Red Square. “We must do everything in our power to ensure that sin is never sanctioned in Russia by state law, because that would mean that the nation has embarked on a path of self-destruction.”[13]
 
Expositor White predicted in 1888 that when enforcement of laws supporting a false Sabbath come to this country, “national ruin” would follow.[14] Might a similar predictive voice be heard if and when national acceptance of homosexual marriage comes, opposing God’s “other” Week-of-Creation institution? It appears to be just around the corner. Might Kirill be a “modern-day prophetic voice”? The Bible suggests so!
 
As a decree to neutralize the sacredness of the Sabbath becomes a “signal” that major events will quickly move forward to the end, so the burgeoning number of laws in support of an immoral lifestyle portend that we are approaching the very end. Homosexuality is one of the signs that the last scenes of earth’s history are about to unfold. Recall: As in the days of Noah and Sodom.
 
Riveting into our consciences must be the Supreme Court ruling against Elane Photography, New Mexico. The agency refused to photograph a lesbian wedding. The New Mexico Human Rights Commission charged owners (Elaine and Jon Huguenins) with violating the state’s “sexual orientation” law. They were levied fines. The case worked its way up to the U.S. Supreme Court unchanged. The Court refused to hear the case. A justice of the state supreme court said, “Being ordered to compromise one’s beliefs is simply the ‘price of citizenship.’” Another state judge (Judge Tim L. Garcia) said that “states can demand Christians violate their faith.” Intimation: They are going to be punished for their beliefs and risk losing their businesses.[15]
 
Thoughts on End-Time Moral Imagery
 
“It is the special work of Satan in these last days to take possession of the minds of the youth, to corrupt their thoughts, and inflame their passions.”[16]
 
“Satan’s temptations are powerful upon the human family to lead them to indulge appetite, gratify inclination, and live a life of heedless folly. He presents attractions in a life of personal enjoyment, and in seeking to gratify the animal instinct. Licentiousness prevails to an alarming extent and is ruining constitutions for life; and not only this, but the moral powers are sacrificed.”[17]
 
“A lethargy of unconscious sensualism through indulgence of perverted appetite, a constant submitting of soul and body and spirit to moral defilement is upon the people. [Even] Under the marriage vow, which our Creator has instituted, appetite has been perverted and indulged. And these lustful appetites, with their destroying power, have been transmitted from parents to children, and so intensified that their names are recorded in the books of heaven as transgressors of God’s law. Upon their very countenances is imprinted the sin of Sodom.”[18]
 
Counsel for God’s People
 
“The first work of those who would reform is to purify the imagination. If the mind is led out in a vicious direction, it must be restrained to dwell only upon pure and elevated subjects. When tempted to yield to a corrupt imagination, then flee to the throne of grace, and pray for strength from Heaven. In the strength of God the imagination can be disciplined to dwell upon things which are pure and heavenly.”[19]
 
“Enoch’s case is before us. Hundreds of years he walked with God. He lived in a corrupt age, when moral pollution was teeming all around him; yet he trained his mind to devotion, to love purity. His conversation was upon heavenly things. He educated his mind to run in this channel, and he bore the impress of the divine. His countenance was lighted up with the light which shineth in the face of Jesus. Enoch had temptations as well as we. He was surrounded with society no more friendly to righteousness than is that which surrounds us. The atmosphere he breathed was tainted with sin and corruption, the same as ours; yet he lived a life of holiness. He was unsullied with the prevailing sins of the age in which he lived. So may we remain pure and uncorrupted. He was a representative of the saints who live amid the perils and corruptions of the last days. For his faithful obedience to God he was translated. So, also, the faithful, who are alive and remain, will be translated. They will be removed from a sinful and corrupt world to the pure joys of heaven.”[20]
 

 
Franklin S. Fowler, Jr., M.D.
Prophecy Research Initiative – non-profit 501(c)3 © 2014
EndTime Issues…, Number 166, June 8, 2014
[1] http://www.thefullwiki.org/Babylonian_Talmud
[2] Hamewith Books (Baker Book Company, 1996).
[3] Alluded to in Folger, Janet; How same Sex Marriage Points to the End of the World, www.f2a.org (5-20-2008).
[4] Spero, Aryeh, Rabbi; Push Back: Reclaiming our American Judeo-Christian Spirit (Evergreen Press, 2012).
[5] caucusforamerica.com
[6] Kirk, Marshall Kirk and Hunter Madsen; After the Ball: How America Will Conquer Its Fear and Hatred of Gays in the 90’s. (Plumb, Sept 1, 1990).
[7] Kupelian, David; The Marketing of Evil (WND Books; Nashville, TN; 2005), p. 101.
[8] NBC News, published June 26, 2013, and BBC News, published June 26, 2013.
[9] World Net Daily, “School Forces Girls to Ask for Lesbian Kiss,” April 24, 2013.
[10] Ibid., “‘Gay’ politics in class? Not with my kids,” April 7, 2014.
[11] Brown, Michael; Charisma Magazine, March 31, 2014.
[12] Vatican News, March 6, 2014.
[13] European Union Times, July 24, 2013.
[14] White, Ellen G.; Last Day Events, p. 133.
[15] World Net Daily, April 8, 2014, “Supreme’s ‘Serious’ about ‘Gay’ Suits vs Christians.”
[16] White, Ellen G.; Mind, Character, and Personality, vol. 1, p. 22.
[17] White, Ellen G.; Testimonies, vol. 3, p. 561.
[18] White, Ellen G.; The Paulson Collection of Ellen G. White Letters, p. 163.
[19] White, Ellen G.; Our High Calling, p. 337.
[20] White, Ellen G.; Testimonies, vol. 2, p. 121.

 

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