Approaching Storm Clouds

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By John Thiel – Audio Mp3    

Facing Last Day Perils Conference

The heralds of the last days were preparing the minds of the people that the end has come in 1879 to 1844. There were heralds that were declaring the end. I will reveal to you said Gabriel, the end of the indignation. At that time even from 1755, the herald of the great Lisbon earthquake together with all that followed afterwards, Daniel standing in his lot pointed to the fact that from 1844 onwards the judgment would be set and the three angels’ messages were launched. That was only the beginning; it was only the heralding of the future. We want to look at the fact that back there in Sr White’s time the storm was only just approaching.

The period of development of the three angels’ messages was actually given to us in the words of the Spirit of Prophecy. E.G White was one of the heralds and God would speak through her in the spirit of the prophet Elijah to prepare a people. It is the Spirit of Prophecy that would show us the detail.

What influence is it that would lead men at this stage of our history to work in an underhanded, powerful way to tear down the foundation of our faith,– the foundation that was laid at the beginning of our work by prayerful study of the word and by revelation? {SpTB02 58.1}

In the early years a foundation was laid and she is lamenting that people are pulling that down.

Upon this foundation we have been building for the past fifty years. Do you wonder that when I see the beginning of a work that would remove some of the pillars of our faith, I have something to say? I must obey the command, “Meet it!” {SpTB02 58.1}

From the foundation that was laid in the early 1840’s there was a fifty year period of building on that foundation so that there was a wonderful structure that was developed over that period of time. After that platform was established and the building was well built because over fifty years it was all structured, then Christ would have come. You are familiar with the terms that Sr White expressed that if in 1888 the people had received the message of Christ our Righteousness, then Jesus could have come within the next two years.

All the truth that was necessary to be ready for Jesus to come had already been established. All that we needed to do was to receive the purity of the Righteousness by Faith message and Jesus could have come. Anything that we need to be ready for Jesus to come is all already long established way back then. We don’t need anything new, it is all there.

I just have to establish myself in that platform of truth together with the whole building that was given over the fifty years. That is the message that is going to prepare me. I don’t just think of myself, I share it with others. That is all we need because Jesus could have come under that message. That was part of the sealing message. The storm that was to break upon the world was being held back by the four angels and there was an angel that was the sealing angel who came and said, hold, keep back those storm clouds until we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads.

Revelation 7:1-4 And after these things I saw four angels standing on the four corners of the earth, holding the four winds of the earth, that the wind should not blow on the earth, nor on the sea, nor on any tree. And I saw another angel ascending from the east, having the seal of the living God: and he cried with a loud voice to the four angels, to whom it was given to hurt the earth and the sea, Saying, Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads. And I heard the number of them which were sealed: [and there were] sealed an hundred [and] forty [and] four thousand of all the tribes of the children of Israel.

What is the seal that this angel said hold back until we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads?

Just as soon as the people of God are sealed in their foreheads–it is not any seal or mark that can be seen, but a settling into the truth, both intellectually and spiritually, so they cannot be moved–just as soon as God’s people are sealed and prepared for the shaking, it will come. Indeed, it has begun already; the judgments of God are now upon the land, to give us warning, that we may know what is coming (MS 173, 1902). {4BC 1161.6}

That was written in 1902. Can you see the sealing message is a message so that God’s people will be prepared for the shaking? It is a settling into the truth, both intellectually and spiritually, so they cannot be moved. The storm, the shaking, is going to move a whole lot of people. But here are a people who will not be moved. What is it? It is the sealing of the truth that was established over those fifty years. It is the entire spectrum of truth that was established on that platform that was built and the people of God had to settle into that message both intellectually and spiritually so that when the shaking comes, they will not be moved. Can you see the import of what we are reading? Not to be moved in the time as the shaking comes means that I am firmly and securely on the platform of truth that was established over those fifty years. Nothing is going to move me. That is the sealing. That is what has to happen so that people can stand securely in the shaking. People have been saying in our generation that the shaking is coming; we have to be strong to stand it. Just as soon as God’s people are sealed and prepared for the shaking, it will come. Indeed, it has begun already; that was written in 1902. The judgments of God are now upon the land, to give us warning, that we may know what is coming.

Can you see the approaching storm clouds? You know what it’s like as you see some light but the storm clouds are coming and already the ocean is roaring, already the eagle is trying to destroy His dove, His undefiled, His beloved people. Sr White says that it is already happening in her time to know what is coming, the shaking. If the people didn’t have the truth to survive, what was happening? Can they survive the rest? This is the picture that is drawn. This quote launches our minds to recognise the perils of these times and knowing how to stand. The shaking will come she says indeed it has begun already to know what is coming.

The Approaching Storm

We need now to strip ourselves for the race, to harness ourselves for the battle. The time of trouble is upon us. {GH December 1, 1899.7}

I hear people say the time of trouble is coming. Have you heard the ministers say that it is future? The time of trouble is upon us in 1899. It took me quite some years to wake up to what I was reading. I thought just like most Adventists of my time that it is all future, it is coming. We kept hearing get ready it’s coming. Slowly I discovered that what Sr White wrote is already upon us. It took me quite a while to wake up to it. All these heralding messages were back there. Where are we today? Are we here in 2013 not already in the thick of the storm? Are we not already experiencing the shaking of such a nature that just because we have been born in the midst of it all we have become used to it? Are we aware that it is the finishing of the whole experience?

The winds were being held back in 1848 when there was going to be a world war. There was trouble in Europe and it was stirring and they thought there is a mighty war coming upon them, then it just stopped. The angels held back.

I was shown the inhabitants of the earth in the utmost confusion. War, bloodshed, privation, want, famine, and pestilence were abroad in the land. As these things surrounded God’s people, they began to press together, and to cast aside their little difficulties. Self-dignity no longer controlled them; deep humility took its place. Suffering, perplexity, and privation caused reason to resume its throne, and the passionate and unreasonable man became sane, and acted with discretion and wisdom. {1T 268.1}
My attention was then called from the scene. There seemed to be a little time of peace. Once more the inhabitants of the earth were presented before me; and again everything was in the utmost confusion. Strife, war, and bloodshed, with famine and pestilence, raged everywhere. Other nations were engaged in this war and confusion. War caused famine. Want and bloodshed caused pestilence. And then men’s hearts failed them for fear, “and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth.” {1T 268.2}

She said in 1902 it is upon us, it has come already. We need now to strip ourselves for the race, to harness ourselves for the battle. The time of trouble is upon us. When was it that the time of trouble was obviously upon them? I was shown the inhabitants of the earth in the utmost confusion. War, bloodshed, privation, want, famine, and pestilence were abroad in the land. What time was that? She is describing the First World War and all the associated dilemmas around it. When did polio break out? Wasn’t it back then? There was pestilence and the rest, not just polio. All that was associated with the First World War is described here and God’s people coming together, that is where the birth of the Reform Movement took place. They came together, they realised this is it. The people who went through this experience recognised that the outpouring of the Holy Spirit had happened to them. I never forget the conversation I had with a Reform minister whose mother was involved in the First World War. He was telling her in her old age, mother the latter rain is coming. She said, sorry son it has already been, it already has been with us; we had the latter rain. He said no mother you are wrong the latter rain is future. She said son the latter rain has been and is going on. She said we knew what it meant to receive the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. They pressed together under this terrible experience. Then there was a little time of peace. The war finished in 1918 then there was a little time of peace then in 1939 there was the Second World War. When the Second World War was over with all its consequences, was there peace, has there been peace since the Second World War? We think it has, because here in Australia we are so well off but look around the world, people are in fear for what is coming.

A storm is coming, relentless in its fury. Are we prepared to meet it? {8T 315.2} We need not say: The perils of the last days are soon to come upon us. Already they have come. We need now the sword of the Lord to cut to the very soul and marrow of fleshly lusts, appetites, and passions. {8T 315.3}

Back there in the 1890’s and 1900’s onwards. She says we need not say it’s in the future. She says Already they have come. You can’t talk to them anymore my parents are gone, but I remember their stories very well from the Second World War. They knew what post stress syndrome was and they could hardly survive. My father came from the Russian prison camp and he was a shattered man. The struggles that he went through in the aftermath and the troubles that existed in the family because of that. It was not known before. It was known in the First World War but before that, that kind of disaster was not known.

We who have grown up post war we don’t know. I wondered sometimes why my father and mother were carrying on the way they were. It was only just later on that I realised what it was. It was destructive; it was pure confusion in everywhere you looked.

Minds that have been given up to loose thought need to change. “Girding up the loins of your mind, be sober and set your hope perfectly on the grace that is to be brought. Now is the time to put forth earnest effort to overcome the natural tendencies of the carnal heart. {8T 315.4}

How have the natural tendencies of the carnal heart got hold of men today? What sort of a hopeless scene have we been beholding and we think it is all still future? Where do we stand today if the approaching storm clouds were back there?

The days in which we live are solemn and important. The Spirit of God is gradually but surely being withdrawn from the earth. {ChS 52.2}

That was back there, so where are we today? I don’t know whether people really understand what these things are saying in terms of real experience.

Plagues and judgments are already falling upon the despisers of the grace of God. The calamities by land and sea, the unsettled state of society, the alarms of war, are portentous. {ChS 52.2}

That’s a strong word, back there. Don’t read this for now, this is not relevant to us now, this is back there. What is relevant to us is much worse.

They forecast approaching events of the greatest magnitude. The agencies of evil are combining their forces, and consolidating. They are strengthening for the last great crisis. Great changes are soon to take place in our world, and the final movements will be rapid ones.–Testimonies, vol. 9, p. 11. {ChS 52.2} The time is at hand when there will be sorrow in the world that no human balm can heal. {ChS 52.3}

Looking at my own father’s experience, that was exactly the case. You have a look at the people who have been to war, can they be healed by any human balm from their post stress syndrome? No. It is ever with them and you hear them testifying of that. To convey to them the realities of the word of God that I know mean so much to me it is like they can’t even pick it up any more. It’s so serious; no human balm can heal it.

The Spirit of God is being withdrawn. {ChS 52.3}

You look at the corruptions of the First and Second World War and then thereafter, can you see the movement of the Holy Spirit among these people? It is the devil at work. We are in such extreme conclusions now that having grown up with them, we think we are still waiting for something future. It doesn’t make any sense when you read these things.

Disasters by sea and by land follow one another in quick succession. How frequently we hear of earthquakes and tornadoes, of destruction by fire and flood, with great loss of life and property! Apparently these calamities are capricious outbreaks of disorganized, unregulated forces of nature, wholly beyond the control of man; but in them all, God’s purpose may be read. They are among the agencies by which He seeks to arouse men and women to a sense of their danger.–Prophets and Kings, p. 277. {ChS 52.3}

We have much worse now. Just that one experience of the tsunami of the Indonesian area and then more thereafter. Japan even not so long ago experienced this. These are disasters that are multiplied not only in sequence but also in power more than ever before. The people know, their hearts are failing them for fear for the things that are coming upon the earth.

Here we are today and the Holy Spirit is being withdrawn from the earth. Is it being withdrawn from those who love their Lord? Sometimes it looks like that too, but the genuine ones have paid attention to the warnings and they consolidate themselves. They settle into the truth both spiritually and intellectually so that they cannot be moved. The Holy Spirit is still working, but not for those who have already decided that they are going to go ahead with war, they are going to go ahead with all these things. We can see thousands upon thousands have been destroyed in the First and Second World War and all the wars that have followed thereafter. It is disaster and shocking confusion.

Elements of the Storm In the General Population

Let’s have a look at some of the elements of this storm. The storm was approaching and now we have been in it for the last two World Wars. What is the element of the approaching storm that was approaching?

2 Timothy 3:1-5 This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.

Notice what Sr White has to tell us about this concept of disobedience to parents in the last days, in her time.

It is the boast of the present age that never before did men possess so great facilities for the acquirement of knowledge, or manifest so general an interest in education. {FE 64.1}

They were boasting that they were increasing in their education. Hasn’t this multiplied to this point in time?

Yet despite this vaunted progress, there exists an unparalleled spirit of insubordination and recklessness in the rising generation; {FE 64.1}

Remember that she is writing about her time, she is not talking about this rising generation, she is talking about hers. What was that rising generation in her time? That was my great grandmother and father. What was the condition of the children at that time? A rising spirit of insubordination, not just insubordination, but a spirit of it was rising and a spirit of recklessness in the rising generation,

…mental and moral degeneracy are well-nigh universal. Popular education does not remedy the evil. The lax discipline in many institutions of learning has nearly destroyed their usefulness, {FE 64.1}

You think you are reading about our time don’t you? No, it is finished now, it’s over; there is no subordination. The young people are ruling the older ones, that is the reality today, but back there it was rising. The storm clouds were rising back there.

…and in some cases rendered them a curse rather than a blessing. This fact has been seen and deplored, and earnest efforts have been made to remedy the defects in our educational system. There is urgent need of schools in which the youth may be trained to habits of self-control, application, and self-reliance, of respect for superiors and reverence for God. With such training, we might hope to see the young prepared to honor their Creator and to bless their fellow men. {FE 64.1}

That was our great grandparents and then came our parents and then my generation. How far have we deteriorated? I know it to be true, I know that as I look back and the subordination that I should have had for my parents was not at all there. I was told I was a good boy, I was told I obeyed my mother and father. To some degree I did, but not in the fullest sense of what the Bible expects. I see that now. What Sr White is being commissioned to write, we should stop to think what really is meant by subordination? What really is meant by the condition of our great grandparents that they had to be curbed and taught how to control self and how well is this last generation able to control itself? If you really look at this material under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit you can see it is over in the great majority of cases. That is one element of this storm.

In the Religious World

Matthew 24:48-49 But and if that evil servant shall say in his heart, My lord delayeth his coming; And shall begin to smite [his] fellowservants, and to eat and drink with the drunken;

What is this in the church in the Christian realm of Adventists? These were the servants who were preaching the coming of the Lord. In verse 48 it says the evil servant says in his heart, he didn’t preach it; he is still preaching the coming of Jesus. Adventists preach the coming of Jesus, but what are they doing? In their heart they are saying it’s gone on for so long, let’s still go along and do a few things that we wouldn’t do if we knew Jesus was coming tomorrow. They say in his heart, My lord delayeth his coming. What do they do to create the storm? They begin to smite their fellow-servants which in verse 45 give meat in due season to the people. They smite them. People like AG Daniels and Butler were raising their heel against the pioneers. They were actually giving them a hard time.

As the storm approaches, a large class who have professed faith in the third angel’s message, but have not been sanctified through obedience to the truth, {GC 608.2}

They have not been sealed or settled into the truth, so that they cannot be moved. That is what they missed out on.

…abandon their position and join the ranks of the opposition. By uniting with the world and partaking of its spirit, they have come to view matters in nearly the same light; and when the test is brought, they are prepared to choose the easy, popular side. {GC 608.2}

The pioneers of the Reform really understood this by experience. They actually saw that the partaking of the spirit of the world was in the Adventist church and when the test came, they were prepared to take the easy popular side. That is what happened in the First World War, they went along with the war instead of standing to their principles. That was back there. That was the approaching of the storm that already happened.

Men of talent and pleasing address, {GC 608.2}

You listen to some of these sermons of Seventh Day Adventists and it sounds very nice, it sounds pleasing.

…who once rejoiced in the truth, employ their powers to deceive and mislead souls. They become the most bitter enemies of their former brethren. {GC 608.2}

They were brethren and now under the pressure of the demise of the events, they take sides with those who were not 100% with the faithful. As they take sides with them, they begin to become their most bitter enemies. It is a weird sort of process that the very ones who were very dear and close to you begin to become enemies because our enemies were touching our own brethren and they became enemies as well.

When Sabbathkeepers are brought before the courts to answer for their faith, these apostates are the most efficient agents of Satan to misrepresent and accuse them, and by false reports and insinuations to stir up the rulers against them. {GC 608.2}

That happened in the First World War. The Seventh Day Adventists ministers and leaders were the bitterest enemies of those faithful ones. That has happened. It just tells you what is to continue and to come. That is what we are to expect.

In this time of persecution the faith of the Lord’s servants will be tried. They have faithfully given the warning, looking to God and to His word alone. God’s Spirit, moving upon their hearts, has constrained them to speak. {GC 608.3}

Why have they been preaching? They have been preaching because God’s Spirit has constrained them to do that.

Stimulated with holy zeal, and with the divine impulse strong upon them, they entered upon the performance of their duties without coldly calculating the consequences of speaking to the people the word which the Lord had given them. {GC 608.3}

If the Lord inspires you to share something powerful from God’s word, you don’t think of any consequences, you think this is going to create a wonderful impulse, a wonderful response. Then you wonder what happens you are tempted to get discouraged. You didn’t coldly assess what was going to happen if you were going to speak God’s word as God wanted you to.

They have not consulted their temporal interests, nor sought to preserve their reputation or their lives. Yet when the storm of opposition and reproach bursts upon them, some, overwhelmed with consternation, will be ready to exclaim: “Had we foreseen the consequences of our words, we would have held our peace.” {GC 608.3}

I know this experience very well. Why did I say that? Why did I unfold all that? I should have kept my peace. This has been the history of each successive generation from the First World War, to stand in defence of the truth when the majority forsake us. Go back to the pioneers of the Reform and you will understand this experience. That is another part of the storm, attack from our own brethren.

In the Home

Micah 7:2 The good [man] is perished out of the earth: and [there is] none upright among men: they all lie in wait for blood; they hunt every man his brother with a net.

Micah 7:5-6 Trust ye not in a friend, put ye not confidence in a guide: keep the doors of thy mouth from her that lieth in thy bosom. For the son dishonoureth the father, the daughter riseth up against her mother, the daughter in law against her mother in law; a man’s enemies [are] the men of his own house.

This is part of the storm. I know very well that part of the storm; family and marital dysfunction. Can you see it around you? We are living in these perils.

Political Strife

We don’t have to talk too much about that. The political strife that God is pouring out in His wrath upon the earth is the wars that we have been watching even to this point in time that are only intensifying to the great battle of Armageddon.

Jeremiah 25:32-33 thus saith the LORD of hosts, Behold, evil shall go forth from nation to nation, and a great whirlwind shall be raised up from the coasts of the earth. And the slain of the LORD shall be at that day from [one] end of the earth even unto the [other] end of the earth: they shall not be lamented, neither gathered, nor buried; they shall be dung upon the ground.

As you see the wars the amount of slain, you see this especially in the time of the wars of the civil war in America. They were just lying there by the hundreds dead on the ground. This is going to become more intense.

The Forces of Nature

They were heralding that in the great earthquake of Lisbon. Everything gets worse and worse.

Luke 21:25 and there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring;

We know all about that don’t we? We just had it there in the Philippines. That wasn’t a tsunami, it was a terrible cyclone that brought such a surge of the troubled sea that it was just like a tsunami and it destroyed the whole city in one place. This is part of the scene.

We hear now of earthquakes in divers places, of fires, of tempests, of disasters by sea and land, of pestilence, of famine. What weight do these signs have upon you? This is only the beginning of what shall be. {TM 444.2}

It’s already happening, the time of trouble is already upon us, but this is only to show us what is still coming. We had it there with the hail storm which we had here last week. It came with a heavy downpour and then there were a few bang, bang. It was just a few isolated hails then it came and got worse and worse and then down came the whole sheet of marbles and it went for quite a while, but there were little beginnings before and you knew it was a hail storm which got worse and worse. This is exactly the picture that we are looking at. We are now in a part where the hail storm is already really destroying but there still worse to come.

The description of the day of God is given through John by the Revelator. The cry of the terror-stricken myriads has fallen upon the ear of John. “The great day of His wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand?” The apostle himself was awed and overwhelmed. {TM 444.2} If such scenes as this are to come, such tremendous judgments on a guilty world, where will be the refuge for God’s people? How will they be sheltered until the indignation be overpast? John sees the elements of nature–earthquake, tempest, and political strife– represented as being held by four angels. These winds are under control until God gives the word to let them go. There is the safety of God’s church. The angels of God do His bidding, holding back the winds of the earth, that the winds should not blow on the earth, nor on the sea, nor on any tree, until the servants of God should be sealed in their foreheads. {TM 444.3}

She describes the sealing angel doing his work. Is he nearly finished? The settling into the truth so that we cannot be moved is still possible in these last moments, but in many places it is impossible because it’s already done its damage. In the First World War it was impossible in that adventists had violated their original stand. These things began back there. Are we now steeped in the middle of it all, only to break into yet even greater fury? That is the reality.

I have been born after the Second World War and I am just sitting in comfort, everything is nice and I didn’t realise that it is not nice at all. I began to study how that in 1951(which is when I was born) the situation with Martin and Barnhouse and the development of the book Questions on Doctrine took place. As I read that I didn’t even know. Then I heard about 1951 with the two reforms, I didn’t know. The more I looked at it the more I saw what was happening. It is the end.

The faithful people who were Seventh Day Adventists that developed the Reform have died and the other ones, the younger generation comes up and new-models the cause. As a result everything has fallen into disarray. Those that thought we are in God’s church suddenly say, what has happened here? Where are we going? That is what has been our experience too. Even now we are in dilemma thinking is this right? It is all chaos but it doesn’t have to destroy us. Have we settled into the truth both spiritually and intellectually so we know what we are standing on? Can we be absolutely 100% sure? That is the question nowadays. Can you be absolutely sure that you have all the truth you need? What has been said to me is that you can’t, there is still more truth. Sorry, there is no more truth necessary to be ready for the Lord to come, it is all there. It has been given to us; all we need to do is to open our hearts to it that is all.

If I don’t know it somebody knows and all I have to do is receive it and open my heart to it. We are living in the time now when people have torn apart not only the truth in general but there are some Adventists today that have just taken a little slither out of it. What did Sr White say? Not even a pin is to be removed. If a pin is removed, what happens to the structure? Be careful how we are influenced by a spirit that is rampant today. It is very plain that we have it all already and it’s nearly all over.

The Lord has declared the judgments and calamities that must fall upon those who continue to dishonor him. Warnings have been given by God, and these warnings should be kept before the people. God’s appointed messengers are to give the call to flee from the wrath to come. {RH, July 28, 1904 par. 19}

That was written in 1904. What are God’s appointed messengers meant to be doing? They are meant to continue to give the warnings that have been given in the past, the same warnings. There is nothing new, it is all the same. Some people in the Adventist ranks are becoming weary of repetition. They want to find something new and exciting. There is nothing more. It is indescribably exciting what we need already to know. I am telling you, I have had to struggle through all this and I have come to a conclusion there is nothing new because we have become so conditioned. You don’t put a frog into hot water because he will jump out, but you put him in warm water and heat it up slowly. This is what has happened to us. We are frogs in heating water and we don’t even know it. This is reality according to God’s word. It is not my opinion, it is here, and it is telling us this. We have grown up in the heat and we think we are quite comfortable. All of a sudden we are fried. How close is the very end? Have we got enough time to change ourselves over a long period of time?

Daniel 11:45 And he shall plant the tabernacles of his palace between the seas in the glorious holy mountain; yet he shall come to his end, and none shall help him.

Daniel 12:1 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.

This is the old Adventist message that they said that the King of the North is Turkey which was the headquarters of the Ottoman Empire. They believed and taught that Turkey is the King of the North. When he shall establish the tabernacles of his palace in the glorious holy mountain, then probation closes. They believed that. You know the story recently. What is the Muslim brotherhood trying to do? They want to establish their palace back again in Turkey. As I was sharing this subject with my son-in-law, I was saying that the Caliphate was going to be restored in Turkey and then they want to transfer it to Jerusalem, he immediately brought it up on the computer and said, that is right in front of me. He was reading the very thing I was saying. This is their purpose. How close are we to the close of probation?

Are we waiting or are we in the storm? Have we become so conditioned in waiting for some future event by which we may be able to correct our position? Or is it already most essential that we break ourselves out of our danger now? Snap. Jesus says to us it will come upon us like a thief in the night.

Matthew 24:42-44 Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come. But know this, that if the goodman of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up. Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh. 45 Who then is a faithful and wise servant,

It will be a great surprise to everybody this coming of the Lord Jesus. Most people say that this scripture refers to the visible coming of the Lord Jesus. What will catch the people by surprise? Is it the visible coming of Jesus? Why does he say watch because it is going to catch you by surprise?

Jesus has left us word: “Watch ye therefore: for ye know not when the Master of the house cometh, at even, or at midnight, or at the cockcrowing, or in the morning: lest coming suddenly He find you sleeping. And what I say unto you I say unto all, Watch.” We are waiting and watching for the return of the Master, who is to bring the morning, lest coming suddenly He find us sleeping. What time is here referred to? Not to the revelation of Christ in the clouds of heaven to find a people asleep. No; but to His return from His ministration in the most holy place of the heavenly sanctuary, when He lays off His priestly attire and clothes Himself with garments of vengeance, and when the mandate goes forth: “He that is unjust, let him be unjust still: and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still: and he that is righteous let him be righteous still; and he that is holy, let him be holy still.” {2T 190.1}

This is what this is talking about. The Lord has given the Adventist people the pure message that the King of the North is Turkey and that when Turkey rebuilds its Caliphate and places it in Jerusalem, you know. Only the people who believe what original Adventists believe will know because they are watching. They will know it is coming am I ready? Settle into the truth both spiritually and intellectually very quickly otherwise we will also be wiped off. This is the reality. By the time they find that the storm is blowing it is too late. When Armageddon strikes in Revelation 13-16 what is written in verse 15?

Revelation 16:15 Behold, I come as a thief. Blessed [is] he that watcheth, and keepeth his garments, lest he walk naked, and they see his shame.

When the storm in all its final fury is there, they will be found naked. These are the harsh realities that we are living under at this time. The storm is not now approaching. The heralds spoke of the approaching storm. In 1844 onwards they were establishing the platform of truth that they needed to be settled in so that when the storm strikes, which Sr White says in 1904 that it was already then striking, that then they would have settled so that they could not be moved. The storm that was relentlessly approaching back there is now all about us as in the storms which often still increase in vigour and fury. It is going to be horrendous but it is already horrendous now. Courage brother, take hold with great diligence. It requires more than Laodicean stamina.

As I saw what we must be in order to inherit glory, and then saw how much Jesus had suffered to obtain for us so rich an inheritance, I prayed that we might be baptized into Christ’s sufferings, that we might not shrink at trials, but bear them with patience and joy, knowing what Jesus had suffered that we through His poverty and sufferings might be made rich. Said the angel, “Deny self; ye must step fast.” Some of us have had time to get the truth and to advance step by step, and every step we have taken has given us strength to take the next. {EW67.2}

That’s the establishment of the pure message over the fifty years.

But now time is almost finished, and what we have been years learning, they will have to learn in a few months. They will also have much to unlearn and much to learn again. Those who would not receive the mark of the beast and his image when the decree goes forth, must have decision now to say, Nay, we will not regard the institution of the beast. {EW67.2}

What did it say? In her time it said that they had had years learning but now in her time anybody that comes from there would have to learn in a few short months. That is why when the First World War broke out if they didn’t have the correct understanding they went for it. Here we are today.

The day is at hand. For the lessons to be learned, the work to be done, the transformation of character to be effected, the time remaining is but too brief a span. {Ed 184.2}

When I first read that I thought Lord, what hope have I got? I am sharing with you nothing of my own making. This is what I have read and observed. Lord is there any hope for me? I rejoiced when I read Romans 9. It’s not just a settling into the truth intellectually. We have a lot of intellectuals but it is the spiritual one that we need to learn fast.

Romans 9:27-28 Esaias also crieth concerning Israel, Though the number of the children of Israel be as the sand of the sea, a remnant shall be saved: For he will finish the work, and cut [it] short in righteousness: because a short work will the Lord make upon the earth.

If you are walking with the Lord, what will the Lord do with you? He will make a short work. I tell you, just as we read there you will have to know what it means to suffer and not give up. To have a character that can cope with everything folding down around us. We needed to have that and the Lord can give it to us very quickly if we learn from the past. If we go over the material of this conference with an open heart to say, all right Lord, I am going to stop arguing my way, I am going to open myself entirely to what you have shown me here and I am going to let you take over. It’s horrifying, it’s terrible, Lord I can’t, and it’s too much. The Lord says, just stay with me, don’t give up, I’m going to carry you through. You might be knocked about. If you get caught in a flood and you go rushing down and there’s a log that hits you on the side and another one hits you on the other side but you are hanging onto the rope of God’s protection you might get bombarded all over the place but you are hanging onto the truth. As the storm and the flood take you down course the truth will carry you through. Don’t let go of the truth. You might get hurt but it doesn’t matter the Lord can heal the wounds very quickly. He can do the miracles of saving us through this madness.

May God grant us to know and understand that as the storm strikes we can be His dove, His undefiled and we will not be destroyed because we are hidden in the Rock.

Amen.

Posted on March 13, 2014, in Facing Last Day Perils, Sermons by John Thiel. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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