Unless otherwise noted, all scripture quotations are from the King James Version.
It is an indisputable fact that we are living in the last days of this world's history. Any intelligent man or woman who reads the Bible can very easily tell, without any doubt, that this world will soon come to an end.
We read in Matthew 24:3, the question asked by Jesus' disciples. “And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?” Reading this verse, we can understand that if the disciples had not been taught of Jesus that the world was to come to an end, they would not have asked Him when it was to be, and also some sign to be given to prove that His statement was true. Jesus' answer was, “Take heed that no man deceive you. For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many” (Matthew 24:4-5).
This sign has been fulfilled, for the world is full of false teaching and doctrine, and many have been more or less deceived by such. If we look back to the time when Jesus was on earth teaching and preaching the gospel, there were not so many different beliefs then as there are now.
It is said that there are six or seven hundred different denominations in the world today, and by this we know many are being deceived, for they cannot all be right. Jesus knew that there was to be a corrupt power arises in the world speaking against the people of God, and trying to change the doctrine of Jesus Christ. Some do not even believe in Him.
Many have started out to preach, saying, “The Lord has called me to preach,” but what they preach does not stand the test of the Bible. We read in I John 4:1, “Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world”. This is the truth as it has been proven in debates, as well as Bible studies. We will now give a few scriptures to show the teaching of the Bible and the false teaching and doctrine of men.
TEACHING OF THE BIBLE
Keep holy the Sabbath on the seventh day (Saturday).
Christ rose from the dead on Sabbath (Matthew 28:1-6).
The “Church of God” is the Bible name for the church (Acts 20:28).
The righteous and sinners go to the grave and remain there until Jesus comes (I Thessalonians 4:13-14; John 5:28-29).
The righteous will live on earth (Psalm 115:16; Matthew 5:5).
Judgment begins when Jesus comes (2 Timothy 4:1; Ecclesiastes 3:17).
Baptism is done by immersion in the name Lord Jesus Christ (Acts 2:38; Acts
8:38; Matthew 3:16-17).
The Ten Commandments are binding on all (Matthew 5:17, 19).
Jesus is the Son of God (Matthew 3:16-17).
Unclean meats are forbidden for food (Leviticus 11:1-23; Deuteronomy 14:3-21).
The wicked burned up and come to naught (Malachi 4:1; Matthew 13:30; Revelation 21:8).
The righteous will reign with Christ on earth one thousand years (Revelation 20:4).
Observe Lord's Supper once a year (Exodus 12:14; I Corinthians 11:25-26).
Paying tithes, a tenth of all increase, is an obligation for all (Malachi 3:10; Hebrews 7:1-2; Matthew 23:23).
FALSE TEACHING OF MEN
Keep the first day of the week (Sunday).
Christ rose from the dead on Sunday morning.
Give any name for the church.
The righteous go to heaven at death and sinners to a burning hell.
The righteous go to heaven to stay throughout eternity.
Man is judged at death.
Sprinkling is a proper mode for baptism.
The Ten Commandments are nailed to the cross.
Jesus is the Father and Creator of all things.
All things are cleansed, so we can eat anything.
The wicked burn throughout eternity.
The righteous reign with Christ in heaven one thousand years.
It is proper to observe the Lord's Supper any time including every Sunday morning.
Tithes are done away with. It is up to the individual to pay any amount or even nothing.
These are only a few points to show the difference between the doctrine of the Bible and what our Lord Jesus Christ taught, and the doctrines and commandments of men. This is what Jesus meant when He said that false teachers and false prophets would arise in the world in the last days.
Again, Jesus said that Jerusalem would be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled. We are eyewitnesses to the fulfillment of this prophecy in these last days, for Jerusalem, during World War II, was taken from the Turks, and fifty-three nations signed an agreement to make Palestine a Jewish homeland.
We know the Jews are returning there by the hundreds and thousands just as God said they would. SeeDeuteronomy 30:10; Ezekiel 34:12-15; Amos 9:14-15. In Joel 3:1-2, we read, “For, behold, in those days, and in THAT TIME, when I shall bring again the captivity of Judah and Jerusalem, I will also gather ALL nations, and will bring them down into the valley of Jehoshaphat, and will plead with them there for my people and for my heritage Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations, and parted my land.” What more proof do we need to have that we may know we are living in the last days.
In Psalms we read these words, “When the Lordshall build up Zion, he shall appear in his glory” (Psalm 102:16). Jerusalem is being built up just as the Lord said it would be, and the earth is now ripe for the harvest. See Revelation 14:14-16.
God has given many signs in His Word so that His people need not be in darkness in these last days. The people of God should be happy, and lift up their heads, for the coming of Jesus is nigh at hand. Jesus said, “But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved” (Matthew 24:13). It will not be so very long until Jesus will come. We are living in the closing drama of this six-thousand year period. The last, or Third Angel's Message, is going forth to warn the world of the impending doom that is coming upon the ungodly. Let us not be discouraged, but look to Jesus, who is the author and finisher of our faith.
We read in James 5:1-6 of the great trouble which is to take place between the capitalists and the labor class. This was spoken about two thousand years ago, and we are eyewitness to this being fulfilled in these last days, but James also gave us these comforting words, “Be ye also patient; stablish your hearts: for the coming of the Lord draweth nigh” (James 5:8). The prophet Jeremiah speaks of the last days, “Therefore prophesy thou against them all these words, and say unto them, The Lordshall roar from on high, and utter his voice from his holy habitation; he shall mightily roar upon his habitation; he shall give a shout, as they that tread the grapes, against all the inhabitants of the earth” (Jeremiah 25:30).
The following three verses tell of a great time of trouble that will follow. He said, “evil shall go forth from nation to nation, and a great whirlwind shall be raised up from the coasts of the earth” (Jeremiah 25:32). Whirlwind in prophecy means war, strife, and trouble, and the Lord said it would be from one end of the earth to the other. This will undoubtedly be the time of trouble we find spoken of in Daniel. “And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at THAT TIME thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book” (Daniel 12:1). This prophecy has not yet been fulfilled, and we can look for this great time of trouble soon to take place. The six thousand years will soon be finished and Jesus will come to reign. At this time will occur the FIRST resurrection of the dead, on which the second death will have no power, but they shall be kings and priests and reign with Christ a thousand years.
The gathering of the Jewish people back to Jerusalem shows us the end is near. The battle of Armageddon will come upon all those who gather against Jerusalem. This will occur as the seventh plague. The Lord said in Zechariah 14:12 that He would gather all nations against Jerusalem, and there will be a great time of trouble, for Jerusalem will be a burdensome stone to ALL nations. A message known as the Third Angel's Message should be and is being proclaimed as a warning against the beast power which exists at the second coming of Jesus and prior to Christ's reign on the earth for 1,000 years. This is a part of the Gospel, by the acceptance of which people may escape the “wrath of God” which is also to be consummated before the Millennial Reign of Jesus.
Let us all be faithful in these last days and do all we can to get this message of warning to the world. The Lord is blessing the work, but we want to see a greater work done, so let us all be faithful to the Lord by giving what belongs to Him, for He is worthy of it all.
May the grace of God be with you all, dear brothers and sisters in the Lord. If we are faithful, we shall reap the harvest of eternal life in the earth made new. See II Peter 3:13.
The Church of God - Publishing House- Salem, West Virginia