The full text of my first post addressing this horrible, pre-apocalyptic crisis can be found HERE.
In summary, here is a biblical explanation of why there are people like this and why it is happening now.
1. There have a “seared conscience”.
2. They have no restraining Spirit influence.
3. They have been abandoned by God.
4. They Are Storing Up Wrath for Themselves – Paul also writes that those who blatantly reject God’s grace are “storing up wrath for the day of wrath” (Romans 2:5) because of their “stubbornness and unrepentant heart”. If there are degrees of rewards in Heaven, it stands to reason there are degrees of punishment in Hell (Matthew 10:15, 11:21-24; Luke 12:42-48). How ironic that those who commit such heinous crimes against humanity are actually increasing their own punishment in the afterlife. And the horror of horrors for these radical Muslims is that the Judge sending them to this Hell will be the Jewish Messiah!
5. They Are Helping Pave the Road to Revelation – In recent history, Bible scholars have struggled with Revelation, largely due to the fact that so many scenes and events in that prophetic book are bizarre and difficult to imagine. But with modern technology, the reemergence of Israel as a nation and a growing one world government (just to name a few contributing factors), a portrait of the end times is much more in focus now than it even has been. But one verse particularly stands out. Revelation 20:4 speaks of “those who had been beheaded because of the testimony of Jesus and because of the word of God”. I believe the activity referred to here takes place during the Tribulation period. These Christian martyrs will literally have their heads taken off (the Greek word for “beheaded” only appears in this verse and means to “hew or cut with an axe”). I find it interesting that the chosen method of killing believers in the Tribulation parallels that of first century Rome. But what is even more amazing is that this method of execution is making a comeback right now through radical Islam. This brutal method of chopping and sawing off the heads of Christians has laid dormant for 2,000 years, but is enjoying a growing resurgence in the last days.
ISIS, though clearly an indication of an unholy marriage of demonic activity and the total depravity of man, is evidence of Satan overplaying his hand once again. Having chosen to use more deceptive means to accomplish his purposes in the past, he is now unmasking himself and coming out of the shadows through this barbaric behavior. This terrorist group isn’t technically a biblical sign of the end times, but it is an indication that the kind of evil prophesied to thrive in the last days is already upon us.
One more thing: Believers can expect this type of activity to get worse as we continue ramping up to Revelation.
So how does a Christian respond to all this? Should we panic? Cower in fear? Run and hide? What does the Bible say? How can you live a courageous and victorious spiritual life in times like these? And is there any hope?
Interested in knowing more about the age we live in, and how it relates to the end times? In my book, As It Was in the Days of Noah, I uncover several additional striking similarities between Noah’s generation, the end times and our day. Plus, discover what God would have His church do in the meantime.