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Eschatology Issues XXX

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Question #1:

[3/15/20, prior to the most recent CV unpleasantness]
Hi Bob,

Well it's getting a little interesting out there. I'm feeling it's just the beginning. It's a little early to say but I'm getting this feeling that this virus is just evil's way to prep people or prepare them to take the mark of the beast. I could be wrong but it just feels it's a smoke screen. I think there is an adjustment of some big things going on behind the scenes and it wouldn't surprise me if the government doesn't step in and start giving a lot of money out. Getting more people to be more dependent on them. I also wouldn't be surprised to see some countries going down and the US stepping in, possibly taking over. Whatever the case it is what it is. It was just a few months ago I had a feeling something big was coming down the pike with the world financials. I guess we will find out soon.

Hope all is well with you. Are you on Spring break yet? __ are now and we are getting rumors they are going to online classes afterwards. The school here is still going but a lot of schools around us are closing. The toilet paper is gone in every town and city around us except here. Our store is as normal as always. It's just weird. __ has been a real big struggle lately. I have never been through so much stress in my life and to top it off with more family nonsense. __ truck broke down [other problems omitted] I haven't experienced anything like it before. I'm hoping. It almost seems impossible though. I just have to keep reminding myself if it happens it does, if it doesn't well then it wasn't meant to.
Take care my friend.

Response #1:

I'm sorry to hear all this. We are tested. And I've noticed that there is a LOT of testing going on at the moment. If we are going to get a respite before the Tribulation, it might not be a bad idea for those of us who have been faithful to have a sort of "graduation ceremony" before hand so we don't forget in the intervening time that God is faithful and always sees us through the rough patches – sort of like the second no-water test that the children of Israel got just before entering the land – the one that Moses failed by striking the Rock instead of speaking to it/Him. I have a number of correspondents who are reporting similar surprising and unwelcome reverses. What they all have in common is that despite the dire nature of them, "somehow" they are not yet destroyed. And of course the Lord is NOT going to let them be destroyed, even if things are a bit uncomfortable for the moment. I'm particularly proud of your good attitude in spite of this pressure. I know that He will bring you through. I'm certainly praying for that.

I don't know the specific answers. I only know THE answer: Jesus loves us and is looking our for us always. That is the faith perspective. We don't have to have "the money in the bank" to trust Him. We trust Him even though with earthly eyes we can't see any solution. Those are the best tests – afterwards when we have passed them.

Keeping you and your family in my prayers. Latest posting describes my current situation. Teaching remotely is going to be "interesting". I'm already tired after the last five days . . . and this is still technically spring break!

Thanks for your prayers too!

In Jesus our dear Savior,

Bob L.

Question #2:

Dear Bob,

After reading this week's questions, I get the impression that most don't understand what the Tribulation means.

If we can't buy or sell without the mark, that means that bank accounts and investments will be frozen. Essentially that gives us six weeks before electricity is cut off, water is cut off, food will spoil in the freezer and refrigerator, gas will be cut off or propane will only last for what's in the tank.

I think only the Lord can get us through. We will become essentially hunter gatherers. Land is no savior, we'll be evicted after the last tax bill. Stock piles of food is no savior, because it will be thrown out in the eviction. Weapons will be of little value since there's only so much one can carry and choices will have to be made as to what is most valuable.

I think that will drive otherwise decent people to viciousness and unprecedented bloodshed. I believe the Lord will see us through but it will be more difficult than anything we've seen before. The Exodus is the closest example but, I believe, pales in comparison to what we'll face. I doubt we'll be complaining about the lack of onions!

I may be over reacting but I doubt it. Given the lying signs and wonders we're already "enjoying" The animated image of the beast is now technically accomplished though used for more mundane purposes – like the news and porn. DNA vaccines are already in use which could be used for mass genocide. MIT has developed technology to embed vaccines records under the skin which seems like the perfect excuse for an officially sanctioned genocide.

Do you think I'm being hyperbolic or over-reactive? This leads to questions of suicide, but I'll save that for another time.

Yours in our lord Jesus Christ,

Response #2:

You're absolutely correct my friend – for everyone whose relying on material means, that is. There is nothing we could ever do ahead of time or think of ahead of time to prevent our rapid and complete destruction at the hands of antichrist.

On the other hand, the same goes when it comes to our destruction at the hands of fallen angels. And yet, here we are.

And it's also true that two plus million people wandering around in Sinai without food and water would soon have seen their animals die and then would have perished themselves – except for the Lord.

That's a pretty big "exception", however.  In fact of course there's none bigger, and it's the only "One" I'm personally counting on.

In Jesus our dear Savior,

Bob L.

Question #3:

Dear Professor

Thank you for your reply and answers to my questions I will certainly follow up with the links you provide and with Curtis.

While it is fresh in my mind from last evening’s Bible study (and I apologise for taking so much of your time). When it came to Q3. What’s does Daniel see in this dream (v 2-8)? [Daniel Chapter 7]

Me: I will let others go first as you know my views on these scriptures.

(preachers wife): No, you go first.
(I could see this coming. It is decorum to listen to others views and not interject, even when you strongly disagree; so there is an advantage in having the final say. __ had told me the day before that she had been a pastor before and that her now husband was the pastor at the Baptist church before taking the reigns at, what he terms a kind of Assemblies of God movement - but it is called something else).

Me: Well, the fourth kingdom is the Revived Roman Empire, the little horn is the antichrist, who takes control of the Revived Roman Empire, he defeats 3 kings, he speaks great things (against God). It is obvious that this is the antichrist, particularly when taken in consideration with both Old and New Testament scriptures.

(she): I have somewhat of a different view to the one he has. All these visions of fiery wheels and glory are about God being in control right now. Satan was defeated at the cross. All these kingdoms are crushed. (She did not directly say it this week, but implied what she had said on previous occasions that we are bringing in the Millennium).

Me: (I broke decorum a little bit). We do not bring in the Millennium. Christ brings in the Millennium at His second Advent after defeating the armies at Armageddon and disposing of antichrist.

During the study I used another Ichthys line I remembered : “We can not know what is going on in someone’s else’s heart”. (In reference to the coming Great Apostasy and who is on the Lords side).

(she): I think WE CAN though the Spirit. We can tell if someone is truly a Christian.
Me: It is my belief and understanding that the situation will somewhat reflect the trial and judgment at our Lord’s trial; where traitors bring believers before the religious authorities and that the state will carry out their dirty work. (This point did not seem to gather much acceptance in the group- though I noticed some concerned looks).

We are in perilous times where people can “tell by the spirit” who are the “real Christians”, where they think, they are bringing in the Millennium AND THEY WILL RULE WITH “Christ” (me thinks this will be the antichrist that impresses them with his “practical solutions” to the problem of those of us who do NOT “BELIEVE” ). In their minds, because Satan has ALREADY been defeated, finally the only impediment is to rid the earth of “unbelievers”! How dangerous is their thinking - and they are the very people “leading their flock carefully down to hell with this false doctrine of demons!

They can tell who is a “true believer” by the spirit and yet can not, by that same spirit, understand the written WORD of the TRUTH!

I did get a bit excited (I know I have been there before). During the study there was a new face, a young man, and I thought to give out your card to all, but was constrained by the spirit of discernment. On walking back down the hill with him I gave HIM one of your cards and enthusiastically extolled the benefits of Ichthys. He is a shearer and as there has been a bit of rain of late (can’t shear wet sheep) he has had a bit of time off lately. I am hoping that if he has more time off he will get into reading at Ichthys.

I thought better than coming out with a straight confession of my desire to have someone else as much a zealot for Ichthys as I am, to share with. After all, were not the disciples sent out in twos. It is good to have support. He has been reading the Bible for himself for about 18 months, deliberately avoiding going to any church, so that he could get things straight in his own mind, without being confused by many different doctrines. He had been to a few churches before that, including the Seventh Day Adventists, but found that they were not quite right, even though they are nice people. “__ church” is the first one he has been to since his lone Bible studies.

I do get quite excited when there seems to be a prospect of someone else embracing Ichthys. I pray it will happen.

Keeping you and your family in my prayers.

In Jesus our dear Lord and Savior.

Your student and friend

Response #3:

Wonderful! I admire your zeal for the Lord, my friend – and since it's according to the truth it's all to the good too.

Yes, "bringing in the millennium" is a widespread legalistic point of view shared by very many groups. It just makes me shake my head at the folly of it and at the arrogance of it, playing right into the devil's hands too. Bad enough now, but as you know and say far more dangerous when the world is being ruled by someone who is basing his rise to power on that very lie.

I'll say a prayer for your shearer.

Best wishes in getting all these loose ends tied up, my friend.

Survived teaching today; the semester gets busier as time goes on, however.

In Jesus our dear Savior,

Bob L.

Question #4:

Dear Professor

Thank you for your encouraging words. Yes, busy, much of which comes from previous choices in biting off more than I can chew. Many things previously bitten off do not get the attention required and I run a rearguard action with them. I endeavour to put the things of God first and certainly your Ministry has made that possible for me and for many other Ichthys followers. No doubt it will be good to stop when my time comes to its end here in this world.

I do know that our Lord blesses me to keep going and no doubt much of that comes from your petitions to God on my and others behalf. For this I am truly thankful.

Back into the fray today . . . [details omitted]

Kayaking was good. I set foot on a beautiful spot on the rivers edge where my mother and other patients used to live, before someone with influence decided it was not a good, restful, scenic place for recovery and watching the boats go by, BUT would make an excellent spot for a private mansion for a wealthy friend together with warning signs of adjoining dangerous cliffs and of course a private jetty sign adjoining the lawned area to the waters edge. The places one can access in a kayak!

It was a case of the Old Law being superior to the NEW law (of the land). Pardon the treading - I wanted to remember my mother.

Thank you for your prayers. I remember you and yours in my prayers.

In Jesus our dear Lord and Savior.

Your (yet far from perfect) student

Response #4:

Hope it all went well, my friend!

And yes you are so right: there will plenty of time to rest on the other side of Jordan.

My parents had a chance to buy a lot on very popular little lake in Michigan when I was just a tot; the price was nothing in today's terms, a few hundred dollars; they certainly could have "swung it"; but my mother didn't want to have to spend all summer up there working on an old house while dad was pastoring away in Indiana. Today that land is worth many millions – and more beautiful than ever. But here's another good verse: "For when he dies he shall carry nothing away" (Ps.49:17 NKJV); or as we say in the states, "you can't take it with you". But you DO of course have your true deposit guarded in heaven by the Lord. Much better than any earthly property will be the lowliest abode in New Jerusalem.

Your friend in Jesus Christ our Lord,

Bob L.

Question #5:

Hello, Dr Bob!

How are you, sir?

Just wanted to drop you a note to show how I appreciate your prayers and the all-important work in the Lord that you are doing for His church. Had recently reconnected my internet line after a long while. Thanks to being hired to teach in a high school - I can now pay my bills.

Thank you for your prayers and the prayers of my siblings in the Lord Jesus I am now able to help meet my family's needs. I will be messaging you again soon, sir.

Yours in our dear Lord and Savior Jesus Christ,

Response #5:

Thanks for that update, my friend! What wonderful news! God is good!

This is definitely an answer to prayer. I will pray now that the job goes well for you.

Your friend in Jesus Christ,

Bob L.

Question #6:

Hi Bob,

What is your opinion of this:

It is in the middle that human choices are made; the beginning and the end remain with God. The decrees of God are birth and death, and in between those limits man makes his own distress or joy. Shade of His Hand, 1223 L / Oswald Chambers, "My Utmost for His Highest"

I found it disturbing and not theologically correct but what do I know. I’d love to hear what you think if you have the time.

Response #6:

This IS disturbing. Sounds more like pop-philosophy than anything truly Christian. But then I never liked Chambers or that whole approach to things.

And in fact, of course, everything that happens has been decreed – but yet we still have genuine free will which we are responsible for, the image of God. Only God could know everything ahead of time and therefore decree time and space along with everything that His moral creatures chose to do in one perfect and all comprehensive and all comprehending absolutely perfect plan. There is only one plan. It is perfect. There are not alternatives and no hypotheticals, and it's all about what we choose. So suggesting that "in between" we are left to "do our own thing" is the height of foolishness. Every choice we make is important (only a question of degrees) – and will be evaluated at the judgment seat of Christ (for believers, that is).

If my impressions of this passage are ungenerous or incorrect, it may be because "sermonizing" always leaves things vague. Good Bible teaching spells things out.

Hope you are doing well, my friend!

In Jesus Christ our dear Lord and Savior,

Bob L.

Question #7:

I thought so Bob but what is disturbing is how many people read that daily ( instead of the bible) and, I think form erroneous worldviews based on what they read.

I often found Chambers to be confusing but this one threw me ..... Thanks for the quick response. I’m holding you in prayer re next semester.

Response #7:

Thanks! Just found out that my upper level classes are NOT going to be cancelled, so that is a huge relief.

Thanks for you prayers, my friend!

In Jesus our dear Savior,

Bob L.

Question #8:

Yay Bob,

God is SO faithful .

There are times in my life when He has answered prayer immediately. Desperate times with my late daughter. Times when he answered them slowly and gradually as the blessing has unfolded and times when He has not answered them at all ( or should I say he has said “ wait”).

For me, the important thing is knowing He is my Father and will always answer .

I’ll keep in praying for you.

So glad.

Response #8:

Wonderfully put!

His plan is perfect. We, however, being imperfect, can sometimes lose track of that truth – especially when the pressure is on. I have no doubt that on the other side everything we "didn't understand" here and now will be crystal clear. In the meantime, it's all about faith: our putting our trust in His perfect faithfulness.

Keeping you and your family in my prayers.

In Jesus,

Bob L.

Question #9:

Dear Bob,

1) In Genesis 25:8, Abraham was gathered to his people when he died. And similar expressions. Should I understand more from this than an euphemism? I know David expected to see his son, but does that tell me more? I've seen nor understood nothing else in the Bible that would indicate that is true.

2) I'm having trouble visualizing the temple altars. If made from acacia (a relative soft wood) and only covered with gold or bronze, it couldn't stand up to the heat of sacrifices. I read of grates or grating in the altar, which makes more sense, but I can't visualize the alter. Can you shed some light?

As an aside, the caul, or fat around the kidneys and liver is called leaf lard and is prized by those who render their own lard. It works the same way as schmaltz (rendered chicken fat) but doesn't
add the distinct flavor of schmaltz. I can see why it was reserved for the Lord. The lard you see on the unrefrigerated shelves of the grocery store is hydrogenated. It was invented by Standard Oil of New Jersey and sold to Germany to grease the Wehrmacht. All of which is irrelevant to Bible issues but I think a paradigm of what we'll face now and in the days ahead.

3) Reading the Pauline letters, particularly Corinthians, sexual promiscuity was rampant and so were sacrifices to Moloch which seems an expedient way of getting rid of unwanted children. How is that different than abortions today since sexual promiscuity fuels much of the abortion business? I don't see much of a difference between then and now.

4) Just observation: It appears that AI has reached the point where it can create images and videos that are indistinguishable from reality. I think we're looking at signs and lying wonders about to be made manifest. I may be wrong [I was once] but this looks like a perfect mechanism to deceive the very elect. They are using this technology to create porn and a number of contemporary movies so why not miraculous signs and wonders.

It's no longer possible to trust news or almost anything read, whether print or on the web. Nor, for that matter, any photographs or film "documentaries." Perhaps this was the way it was in Noah's day but it looks to me like we're getting extremely close to the end. I now worry that I may survive until the tribulation.

There's nothing earth shattering or of spiritual significance here. I'm not sure much of this deserves a response. Certainly nothing worth taking time from your more pressing questioners.

I hope all is well with you and yours. Thank you for your weekly email postings. I know how much work it entails and I want you to know that I, for one, truly appreciate it, You've answered so many of my questions in your answers to others that I can't count. In fact, you've raised questions I hadn't considered before. Thank you.

Yours in Jesus Christ our Lord,

Response #9:

Good to hear from you, my friend. I've been thinking about you – and keeping you in prayer.

1) If you mean after-death pre-resurrection, the story of Lazarus and the rich man in Luke gives the basics there; a link at Ichthys will fill other info: Interim State.

2) It's an interesting question I've wondered about as well. But I'm not enough of a scientist to be dogmatically skeptical so as to say it's impossible. In any case, nothing is impossible with God. There is, moreover, a great deal about the whole process of sacrifice which we don't know – the Bible only provides the outline of what was to happen.

3) There are MANY respects in which "things are not much different then and now", after all. This has been the devil's world since the fall, and we believers are interlopers herein.

4) Great observations, my friend! They show how someone who looks at things from God's perspective is aware of many things which worldly eyes will miss; that is a great deal of what "godliness" really is.

I appreciate all your good words, my friend!

Yours in Jesus Christ our dear Lord and Savior,

Bob L.

Question #10:

Dear Bob,

Once again I wrote poorly in #1. I apologize. My point of interest was "gathered to his people." Specifically, will I be with my family and ancestors? I can't think of anything else in the Bible except similar expressions that would indicate we would be with family.

The question you raised about interim or resurrection is one I hadn't considered. The expression above suggests interim but it does raise a following question. In the resurrection, will land and territories be allotted to families much like the promised land was for the Israelites? Every man sitting under his vine or fig tree and John 14:2-3 many mansions hints at that, but I'm speculating.

Thank you for your thoughts and prayers. I pray all is well with you and yours and all is going well with your work. As an aside, my brother retired from Cornell a couple of years ago and was
ecstatic getting away from the politics and administrative nonsense. From what little has peeked out in your weekly emails, I get the impression you are probably dealing with much the same.

Yours in our Lord Jesus Christ,

Response #10:

It seems clear, based on the evidence in the link given, that we will know and see loved ones who are believers before the resurrection, but there is no inheritance or allotment before that time. "Gathered to his people" means to me those who truly ARE "his people" and that means believers. We are all "sons of Abraham" through faith – but those who are not of faith are not "his people" even if biologically so.

What I can say about rewards and New Jerusalem is all written up at the link in CT 6. Scripture says some wonderful things we can grab onto, but deliberately does not tell us all we'd like to know. Life in eternity in a resurrection body, face to face with the Lord, reunited with the entire family of God, with no sin, no death, no darkness, is bound to be so quantitatively and qualitatively different that it would be impossible to explain without experiencing it.

For I do not consider these present hardships in any way comparable to the glory destined to be revealed for us.
Romans 8:18

But as it is written: "What the eye has not seen and the ear has not heard, and [what] has not entered the heart of man, [these are the very] things which God has prepared for those who love Him".
1st Corinthians 2:9

(17) For this present light affliction of ours is working out for us an eternal weight of glory beyond any possible estimation. (18) [Let us] not [then be] having [any] regard for what can be seen, but [instead] for what cannot be seen. For the things which can be seen are ephemeral. But the things which cannot be seen are eternal.
2nd Corinthians 4:17-18

. . . in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus.
Ephesians 2:7 NIV

Certainly, the promised land and the inheritance that fell to the lot of those who came into it is a deliberate parallel to eternity and eternal reward (just as the exodus is a deliberate parallel to the trouble of the Tribulation one may have to go through to get to it); but it's only a parallel.

What we can say is that things will be blessed beyond our wildest imagination at present – glorying in the presence of Jesus Christ our Lord Himself.

In Him,

Bob L.

Question #11:

Dear Bob,

Thanks. Your concept of "his people" is another I haven't considered. Another one I'll have to explore. I'm sometimes disappointed that things are not more clearly explained. But, if they were, there would be no need for faith.

I think judgment day will be most embarrassing and I don't expect many rewards. There are many things I can look back on and regret. I can say, though, that I deserve all the criticism I'll get. Hindsight is crystal clear. Foresight, sadly, is not. I'm not sure foresight at 20 years old even exists.

I'm sorry about your "interesting" times. I suspect we should all prepare for even more interesting times. There's no sign of anything changing for the better.

Yours in our Lord Jesus Christ,

Response #11:

There is not a Christian alive who doesn't have regrets – at least no one who is truly trying for follow Jesus. The closer we get to Him, the more aware we are of how short we fall. So the only thing for it is to fight the best fight we can today – and let yesterday go (Phil.3:13).

Yes, the Tribulation will be VERY interesting indeed, for us all.

Your friend in Jesus Christ our dear Lord and Savior,

Bob L.

Question #12:

Dr. Luginbill,

I hope you're staying safe during these troubling times. I was reading today about the recent collaborative efforts led by Bill Gates and MIT on ID2020 and tattoo ink that contains health data. I always knew about implantable microchips and that technology seems to have been around for some time; however, the formation of tattoo ink that can contain data really jumped out at me after reading your thoughts that the Mark of the Beast would be in the form of a permanent, visible tattoo. The writing really seems to be on the wall here. I find it interesting that we are living at the end of the biblical timeline and so few people seem to notice. I appreciate your work and know that it will serve as a guiding light for my friends and family in the decade to come.


Response #12:

Interesting – thanks!

We believers don't have to worry about that particular, however, because taking the mark will involve "pledging allegiance" to the beast in a religious way wherein Jesus Christ is rejected. That it so say, no one will "sneak it on us". The whole point behind this diabolical action is to have initiates reject Christ and accept Satan openly and publicly – and wear that on their foreheads (or hands).

In Jesus our dear Savior,

Bob L.

Question #13:

Hello Dr. Luginbill,

I understand the reason behind your statement that "all believers" as well as the 144,000 believers, will be sealed on their foreheads. I am taking this literally as a mark placed on our forehead, as a "visible" mark? Scripture doesn't indicate what this "Mark of God" consists of, at least not that I could see.

My wife was wondering, and at first I answered her that this Mark of God will be visible. She asked me what it consists of and I said I was not sure. Before I had thought about it, I had mentioned that it was something "spiritual", on the inside, as in Ephesians 1:13 and 4:30, but I believe that these two Scriptures are talking about something different than what Revelation 7 is saying. Am I thinking correctly? Is there another study I am missing?

As always, I appreciate your insight.

Blessings, Grace, mercy and peace be yours in Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior.

Your friend,

Response #13:

I'm not sure I've ever said that all will be sealed "on their foreheads" (do you have the reference for that?). I do think it's true that we who have been "sealed by the Holy Spirit" will have the same benefit as the 144,000 in respect of not being subject to the judgments coming from God to warn and punish the unbelievers who follow the beast. And no, you are correct, as far as I know there is nothing in scripture to tell us what that mark looks like – though we do know that we will bear His Name on our resurrection bodies (see Rev.3:12). It's also true that this name on the forehead of the 144,000 is a direct and deliberate contrast to the mark of the beast. For that reason too I think it is most likely invisible: contrasting the invisible and spiritual to the visible and man-made.

Yours in Jesus Christ our dear Lord and Savior,

Bob L.

Question #14:

Hello again Dr. Luginbill,

In regards to your statement in your teaching of the First Woe: No you never did say that "all believers" will be marked by God but in this study you also say the following:

"Although it is true that these locusts are prevented from actually delivering mortal wounds, they will afflict the entire world (save for believers), and inflict such pain over a five month period that, whenever stung, the affected individual will wish that he or she were dead."

So I understand that if the entire world [except for believers[ are afflicted would it not be appropriate to apply Rev. 9:4 to "all believers" not just the 144,000 which is what is says as you already know in Revelation 7:3. Am I not understanding this verse correctly. Only the 144,000 will be marked by God on their foreheads? Revelation 9:4 says in part: " Do not harm the earth or the sea or the trees until we have sealed the (bond-servants) [all true Christians?] or ?

Sorry, for my misinformation and reading of the study. So I just need a clearer understanding of the two verses I quoted. Thanks so much for your help and patience for me.

Blessings to you always,

Your friend,

Response #14:

No worries, my friend.

The fact that Revelation 9:4 says not to harm those sealed on their foreheads does not at all necessarily mean that all who do not have the 144K seal will be harmed. I assure you that believers are not the object of harm, however the Holy Spirit within us is manifest to those carrying out this warning judgment. Moses and Elijah, the two witnesses who direct the 144K are not literally and technically part of them – so they are not said to be "sealed on the forehead". But I assure you that Moses and Elijah have nothing to fear from this judgment. This is the way that Revelation expresses things, namely, in terms of polar absolutes. So there are many times in the book where we have to understand some portion of humanity that don't fall into either group. For example, it says at Revelation 13:16 that the beast "causes all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hand or on their foreheads" – but we know 1) no genuine believers take the mark; 2) those not old enough to be accountable for their action are not yet going to be allowed to take it; and 3) there will be many unbelieving Jews who do not take it – because they are prophesied to turn to the Lord when He returns. So we have to understand "all" there as "all unbelievers (apart from obvious exceptions)". This is not the modern "scientific" English approach, but it is a common thing in the way the ancient world expresses things – not feeling the need to spell out the obvious and not being hung up on an actually dubious false standard (see the link: "all").

To expand Revelation 9:4, therefore, we are within our rights to translate interpretively, "but only those men who do not have the seal of God on their foreheads [and are not believers]"; or "i.e., [most] unbelievers only [though excluding many Jews]. That is what it means: the world at large which follows antichrist and has no use for God in any way. This verse is not meant to scare believers to fear that they will be harmed because they are not part of the 144K. It is doubtful if the 144K are believers at the moment of sealing – hence the need for the special sealing. These are the special, Jewish young men who respond to the ministry call of Moses and Elijah – in the early days of the Tribulation. Wrongly interpreting this verse – as many have – has led some to think (dangerously) that the 144K must be the only "true believers" of today (or of that day). But we know that the martyrdom of the 144K comes first and separately.

I hope this helps, my friend. It's a fair question to ask.

Yours in Jesus Christ our dear Lord and Savior,

Bob L.

Question #15:

I also wanted to send these photos of forehead temperature scanners which are being used on people to detect whether they have the Coronavirus. The use of these devices over time will lower people's aversion and discomfort of having their forehead and face being scanned by a machine. It will be normalised with time.

Now that so many people have gone "cashless" and people tap their bank cards and smart phones on a handheld scanner to pay, we can easily see how both hands and foreheads bearing the mark of the beast could be "scannable" at supermarket checkouts, public transport, entrance to workplaces, hospitals etc.

I know that the mark will be about worship and allegiance. However, as those who refuse it will be unable to buy or sell, it is not hard to see how people's finances and identity will be linked to the visible mark directly through a biometric or RFID branding or tattoo which will be scannable.

Although it is very chilling to see these photographs, it serves as a great impetus for me to be serious about my faith and to make sure that I will not be one of the foolish virgins.

In our Lord and Saviour who has already overcome the whole world,

Response #15:

I'm glad to hear of your continuing spiritual growth and confidence in the Lord, my friend!

As to the tech-issue, it is indeed "easy to see" how what scripture says about what's coming might develop. I also like to stress, however, that things are changing so fast now, and will be changing so fast then, that we have to avoid falling too much in love with one particular interpretation of exactly what all this will look like.

The other important thing to stress is that taking the mark will not be a casual thing. It will be a religious act that takes place in a religious ceremony where allegiance to the beast over all others by doing so will be made clear and proclaimed by the one taking the mark. So it won't be an accident. The devil wants people to overtly reject Jesus Christ in preference for his son, antichrist. The difficulties of being without the mark for those of us who live to see those days will be formidable – but nothing is impossible for the Lord. Getting across the Red Sea was impossible. But the Lord made it happen. Being sustained in the desert for 40 years without food and water was impossible. But the Lord provided. Those people whined and complained, but we know from their experience that the Lord faithfully provide for them and protected them for the entire journey. We have a right to have confidence that He will do the same with us – if we keep faith with Him. And we have the responsibility to walk through that valley of the death-shadow in a way that honors Him (as the exodus generation did not: 1Cor.10:1-12; Heb.3:16 - Heb.4:12).

In Jesus Christ our dear Lord and Savior,

Bob L.

Question #16:

Greetings Dr. Luginbill, I pray all is well with you and your family and that the grace of life extended to you throughout this year has been fruitful.

Thanks for taking the time to read this Gmail.

In reviewing part 5 of The Satanic Rebellion in section 8 on Evidence for the Seven Days Interpretation, under Day#4, Area #3 you write "Holiness toward Authority (sanctifying and separating ourselves from rebellion against divinely constituted authority):

I have been considering this issue here lately that ties into Romans 13:1 and discussing this topic with friends. In these last days of which we are living if we are to believe the scriptures about the coming global tyranny, even that which you cover in regards to Satan's endtime global tyranny, the more I research current events, technology and our own military industrial complex, the more I am convinced that our own government has already been commandeered by evil entities that are waging a silent war against the citizenry using psychotronic weaponry.

Historically the Vatican was recognized as a divinely recognized authority but if Martin Luther would have followed Romans 13:1, there may not have been a Protestant movement. Also if George Washington and the founding fathers would have followed Romans 13:1, there would have been no Revolutionary war, no US Constitution, no Declaration of Independence and no United States of America.

I am sure you have heard the warnings by two of our former Presidents, Eisenhower and JFK, against "unwarranted acquisition of power by the military industrial complex" and other fifth column subversives, but apparently the rest of the American people have not or if they did, the warnings went unheeded.

Two books in regards to these issues highlight my concerns:

1. "New World War--Revolutionary Methods for Political Control ---Mark M. Rich

2. Romans 13--- Dr. Chuck Baldwin

How are we to separate ourselves from the apparent burgeoning and ubiquitous antichrist beast system that is obfuscating every venue of our lives from the macro to the micro?

Response #16:

Good to hear from you. I'm well and I hope you are too.

I can assure you that you have been given the image of God and that is it inextricably part of your human spirit. That spirit can never be destroyed or altered or controlled by another; only by ceding control of your will by following voluntarily what is evil can you or anyone else be manipulated by the evil one and his system and his followers – and only in this life.

The LORD is my light and my salvation— whom shall I fear? The LORD is the stronghold of my life— of whom shall I be afraid?
Psalm 27:1 NIV

Good questions – now as well as then, and into whatever the future may hold. We don't have to worry because we belong to Jesus Christ. If we are worrying we are "not following orders" in any case (Matt.6:25-34). The worst this world can do to us is take away our temporary often-painful physical lives (Lk.12:4-5). But we are looking forward to a reward that will last forever as part of Christ's Bride in the New Jerusalem.

Will there be hardship and trouble during those seven years? Indeed. That is why it's called the Tribulation. But those who are following Jesus Christ will see this aright: we live or die for Him (Rom.14:8; Phil.1:21); we don't care what this world does to us for we only care about pleasing Him:

They triumphed over him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony; they did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death.
Revelation 12:11 NIV

As to what governments do and how the forces of the evil one have been running this world since Eden (but not without the Lord protecting those who are His), why should we be concerned about that? We can't fix that! We can't even see the devil and his demons. We certainly can't do battle with them – not on their terms. The way the Lord has given us to fight this fight is by being witnesses for Him, demonstrating our faith in Him and our love for Him by growing spiritually, progressing in our walk with Him, and manifesting our love to our brothers and sisters in Christ by helping them do the same.

So while the degeneration of the world is "interesting" – especially to those of us who are looking at things with the godly perspective – and while the rotten trends of our age point to the worse ones soon to be revealed when the Spirit allows the "empowerment of error" to break forth (2Thes.2:9-12), we believers understand that God is entirely in control; that nothing whatsoever can happen in this world without it being allowed by the Lord; that in fact even the smallest event could not take place unless it has already been decreed in the plan of God – the plan that is perfect in every single detail and has taken account of all of our needs, right up until kingdom come.

"Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? Yet not one of them is forgotten by God. Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows."
Luke 12:6-7 NIV

Confident of standing with your before our Lord's judgment seat on that great day to come, my friend!

In Jesus Christ our dear Lord and Savior,

Bob L.

Question #17:

Thank you Dr. Bob. I hate moving like the plague too, but I guess when The Lord signals its time to move the tent, I would have to pack and move. I am sending you a rather diabolic circular that has been doing the rounds I the country lately. It is from the demon possessed outgoing prime minister Narendra Modi's Political prime mover the RSS, which wreaks havoc with it religious violence and antichristian agenda. This ruthless Modi is the forerunner to the coming beast and he has already pawned the nation to NWO Initiatives. I am lead to believe he will usurp the chair by rigging the electronic votes. His party has announced India will be a nation's of Hindus and they will simply eliminate or drive out the Christian and Islamic minorities before 2021. I guess the mark of the beast will be rolled out in India soon. The document is in the attachment. Brother, I have some exciting scoop! I am lead to believe that the Sanhedrin has identified the ac and it looks like they see a messiah in Jared Corey Kushner, I believe I am onto something here by the Grace of God, we have the Mind of Christ ... Did some research on this guy last night and I found out that Jared is an orthodox jew, his grandparents are holocaust survivors from Belarus and have Jewish Russia ancestry. In under 2 short years he has risen meteoric ally to senior advisor of the president of USA whom Jerusalem celebrates on the same ivy league as King Cyrus in the old Testament. You know they recently minted a half shekel with king Cyrus in the background and Trump in the foreground. Each one entering the 3rd temple must use this half shekel. Benjamin Netanyahu went gaga thanking Trump and Jared Kushner over this "Historical event" and guess just who the chief guest was at this event? Jared Corey Kushner who is mediating the middle east peace process! The guy maintains absolute absence on social media as opposed to his oval office counterparts, his Twitter account still does not have a single post from him, the guy owns prime real estate in 6 major US cities, owns part of Times Squarein New York plus he recently purchased building 666 on 5th Avenue considered the single biggest real estate deal in New York at close to 2 Billion USD. There are speculations that Emmanuel Macron could be a likely ac candidate, but Geopolitical diplomatic community evidence is in favor of Jared Kushner today I suppose. He has the charisma and the political clout that charms the Sanhedrin and the chief priest has recently announced the messiah will arrive shortly after the Israeli elections and we need the 3rd temple built ASAP.

Need your thoughts on this one. Folk speculate Emmanuel Macron is another likely candidate with a true antichrist spirit in Europe right now, but The Holy Spirit urges me to watch Jared Corey Kushner closely.

Response #17:

Sorry to hear about the awful political situation there, my friend. I will say, however, that this is not the "mark of the beast". That mark will be a visible tattoo which will be received, most likely, in a religious ceremony wherein the person receiving the mark will swear allegiance to the beast as God and Christ. However bad the intrusion suggested in this memo – or the other intrusions into privacy of a similar nature happening all over the globe – this is not the same thing. It's important to understand that, because otherwise the true mark may be missed. The marking will not begin in the mass until half-way through the Tribulation when the beast takes his seat in the temple in Jerusalem and proclaims himself openly to be the Messiah.

The same set of caveats goes regarding this person you mention. I probably don't have to tell you (as many of these are posted at the site) that many other people have been identified as antichrist in the past only have not been. It is true that we are getting very close to the Tribulation and that the beast almost certainly is alive and active on earth at the moment, but that does not mean that this person is him. For one thing, the beast will claim to be Christ, and will apparently sway all of organized Christianity into that way of thinking. This person does not make any such claim and such would be considered totally ridiculous at this point.

As to the temple, it won't be rebuilt until the Tribulation begins, and that will happen under the auspices of Moses and Elijah – in other words, it will be part of a legitimate revival in Israel until the mid-point of the Tribulation when the beast kills the two witnesses and sets up his world rule in Jerusalem.

So it's better not to get ahead of ourselves. Even if a person guessed right at this point, it would have to be a guess and wouldn't provide any particular spiritual benefit. Guessing wrong is a problem, however, because that has a tendency to "marry" the guesser to his/her guess and make him/her prone to missing the real antichrist.

So my advice is to wait and see. It is interesting and it is valuable to keep apprised of such world events, but it is prudent to keep an emotional distance. That, after all, will be doubly needful once the Tribulation does begin.

Keeping you and your family in my prayers every day, my friend.

In Jesus Christ our dear Lord and Savior,

Bob L.

Question #18:

Dear Dr. Bob,

Thank you for your swift response over this matter.

I too believe the mark will be a tattoo given with permanent ink, that can only be burned off the skin to erase it. I am not implying that Jared Kushner or Emmanuel Macron for that matter is the antichrist. I was only wondering if they could become. Jared Kushner doesn't even look like a man with his college kid looks but I am sure he is smart enough to sway a black swan like Donald Trump. But he is in a position of power mediating the Arab Muslim peace agreement right now as we are nearing the tribulation. I know of people naming folks as the likely candidate before but because of the times right now and Donald Trump saying Jared if you cannot make peace deal between Israel and Palestine, nobody else can in one of the speeches, fixating on Jared Kushner and Jared is at good terms with the reigning prince of Saudi Arabia and a couple of his allies. What if he is successful in making this peace deal albeit temporary, would not the Sanhedrin be in favor of him and what if the devil puts his spirit inside him and this unlikely Jared Kushner can become completely evil in a trice. Also, I was of the feeling that the antichrist could be in public view even though he is not revealing himself as the one yet. These are the perspectives I had while I wrote that email.

However, I am always open and willing to take your wise counsel as my mentor in Christ with all of your unrivaled knowledge in the word of God.

With all due respect to you Dr. Bob, I still don't clearly understand why Moses & Elijah would play a part in building the 3rd temple especially when Christ has finished everything on the cross why would they go back to the temple sacrifices what message would that send to the church? I still cannot comprehend how God would view the temple sacrifices when those ages are over. As I am of the belief that the 3rd temple is built exclusively for the antichrist to come and sit in and call himself God. I don't understand why Moses and Elijah would even think of having anything to with the temple rituals with the bride church in plain view, even though I know they are sent to the non-believing jewish communities of those times, would they not show them that The Messiah Jesus has already come and He has kept the law and fulfilled it at the cross and to look upon Jesus alone as The small messianic Jews do and encourage them to look at the Savior Jesus who is coming back? Why would they condone reinstituting temple sacrifices again...after Christ has made the ultimate sacrifice 2000 years ago and when men are no longer under the law or old testament governance....and would God approve of those temple sacrifices again even when they are reinstituted in hopes they will be acceptable worship during their revival with the bride church around in plain sight at the same time? How is this even possible? How can these dual worship go on on the earth simultaneously?? I am at a mighty loss here. Please educate me on these gray areas, Dr. Bob oh...what am I missing? This is the best I know to word my burning questions as a non-native speaker of English.

As with the identity of the coming antichrist, I am only curious to see the enemy has a visible face and to know who that is....that is all. I hate him to the core just as Jesus does and I will stand up against him and his armies to the best of my God-given ability to the point of death or until He receives me in the clouds. I can be patient for his revealing if that is God's will for us all. I also am not very clear about the taking up of the church does it happen pre-wrath or exactly at the time of His appearing second-advent. I know you say the rapture happens at the second advent, so folks I know argue on a post-tribulation pre-wrath rapture before the Great Tribulation closes as those events are too graphic for the church to undergo and the prayers of the saints to escape these things will be answered and Jesus will take us away before the wrath is poured out...Is wrath the final event at Armageddon they are referring to erroneously as opposed to the pre-millennial judgments that are harsh by themselves? What exactly is this pre-wrath post-tribulation rapture some folks talk about within the post-trib camp? I am yet to cover ground on these in your Tribulation series and it will take me some time to get there. Kindly shed some light on these as a preview, even though I will not stop reading the series or spend enough time to get past those passages where you deal with these facts.

I have one more question which I have when The Maji found Christ Jesus why was it impossible for Herod or satan or his minions who constantly stalk humans by the way. Did God hide Jesus as a child from their sight, so they could not find him and what happened when Joseph packed Mary and baby Jesus and took them to Egypt secretly..just how could satan or his demons fail to keep track of them during this time especially with Herod burning to kill Jesus? This does not bother me as it was God's will but just the inner workings of these ....if you know what I am getting at.

Thanks Dr. Bob I will get by with your wise counsel from God. Just that I have a rather inquisitive mind and want some answers for myself that's all.

I thank God again for you personally mentoring me. You are very precious in my sight just as you are in other brothers' and sisters' lives right now.

I love you with all my heart brother. Much respect to you. May God Bless and Keep You safe as a light-bearer among men in these last days.


Your brother and friend in Christ our Sovereign King

Response #18:

I do understand, my friend. It's only natural for believers who know something about the end times to wonder about these things, and being informed is not at all bad. We just have to stay cautious.

The tribulational revival of Israel is a special case, but it is not unprecedented as there will be a temple (this third temple) during the Millennium and sacrifices will be offered on that occasion too, as memorials rather than as shadows. No doubt the proper teaching will accompany these sacrifices, and with Moses and Elijah managing this as well as the ministry of the 144,000, I'm sure that all these things will be made clear as well. The Tribulation is a joint time, both the last seven years of the Age of Israel and the last seven years of the Church Age. So a revival of things for Israel which comport with her age is not to my mind incongruent. The third temple is in place when the beast takes his seat there at the mid-point of the Tribulation (2Thes.2:3-4), but he has not been directly ruling Israel nor present in Jerusalem until that time. Moses and Elijah are killed first (Rev.11), and then these Great Tribulation events including the marking and the erection of the abomination of desolation take place. The temple is described in Revelation as "THE temple", but it couldn't be that, and the measurement of it by John wouldn't make sense (cf. Ezek.40-44), if it were merely a monstrosity erected by the beast (its court where the abomination is set ups is also called "the holy place" at Matt.24:15, something that could not be true if the whole enterprise were beast-directed).

As to the "pre-wrath" false teaching (see the link for a detailed conversation about this), scripture is very clear that the resurrection occurs when the Lord returns (e.g., Matt24:26-44; 1Thes.4:13-17). The wrath of God that falls upon UNBELIEVERS and upon the beast and his armies is NOT directed at believers. Indeed, Revelation describes the judgments listed therein as in some respects being in response to our prayers – they level God's wrath on our adversaries (Rev.5:8; 8:3-4). So we need not worry about any of this my friend.

As to opposing the beast, our job will be to do so by remaining faithful. That may require our martyrdom. But some will be required to endure until the end – and be resurrected while yet alive.

As to the Magi, they were supernaturally directed to the Messiah (by the star) and supernaturally told when to leave and how (in a dream); and Joseph was supernaturally directed (by an angel in a dream) to take Mary and Jesus to Egypt. If the devil were allowed to do all he would like to do, the entire human race could no doubt be eliminated in an afternoon. As Elisha told his servant, "Do not fear, for those who are with us are more than those who are with them" (2Ki.6:16).

Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.
1st John 4:4 KJV

Thanks for all your good words, my friend!

Keeping you and your family in my daily prayers.

In Jesus our dear Savior,

Bob L.

Question #19:

Dear Professor

Thank you for your kind reply.

It is fine to forward the substance of our conversation. Better than me chewing on his ear; rather a chin wag from you will work much better. I say all this with affection, and he would understand the terms. Do you use these terms in the USA?

Over the worst of the cold/flu. Thank you for asking and your prayers. How is Curtis going? Rather cool and damp here. We are getting the opposite weather to yours in this patch.

My wife finds the tribulation Series a bit too much to comprehend so I suggested BB 2B as an alternative, and I occasionally read out bits aloud so those in earshot (particularly one not very interested son) can benefit by hearing something. Wife says it sounds scary. Perhaps that is why most would just rather not think or hear about it. However, escapist tactics, like taking the path of least discomfort will be a trap for unwary players. As we know from scripture, and explained in your Series, accurately knowing beforehand, is a distinct advantage as long as we prepare spiritually. (Mark 13:23)

BB 2A Eschatology
A. Question. (The last paragraph, 2nd line) Under the heading:
2. The False Prophet ; you write: “Thus Revelation 13:15 indicates that all whose allegiance to antichrist is suspect will be brought to Jerusalem and made to stand before the colossal idol, ....”

Will it not already be obvious that the refusal to take the mark is a refusal to worship the beast?

B. Question (Second last paragraph, 4th line, under the same heading); You write: “ We may posit that the false prophet in his role of high priest of the beast’s religion will supervise a worldwide campaign of contributions for the construction, ....”

(i) Does this mean that the worldwide religion is in place during the first half of the Tribulation and that the false prophet has organised the statue to be in place at the temple as the antichrist returns to Jerusalem?

(ii) Would this also mean that those in Judea may possibly be aware of it being constructed (in situ, or being transported through the streets - possibly at night - to be revealed on the victorious return from battle of antichrist)?

(iv) This would seem to give those in Judea a fair bit of warning to flee before the idol is revealed with the possible pomp and ceremony such occasions seem to bring, and prior announcements to the unveiling?

(v) What would be the reason for “the inhabitants of the earth” to contribute during the 1st Half, when, as you observe, most of the world’s people are skeptical of religion and therefore necessitating the need for the idol to be impressive, and talking?

There is certainly no urgency to answer these questions. I will feel I am a bit slow if I have missed or even forgotten explanations which may be in your longer versions (i.e., The CT).

I do very much appreciate your kind and thoughtful Ministry and would be still quite lost without it. As I have said before - finally I have found a ministry that actually teaches the truth from the Word of God.

In Jesus our dear Lord and Savior.

Your student and friend

Response #19:

Glad to hear that you are getting on top of the flu, my friend.

Latest questions:

A) "Will it not already be obvious that the refusal to take the mark is a refusal to worship the beast?" The mark is not mentioned until the midpoint of the Tribulation; that is when the great persecution begins. If you mean that there is no need for any trial in Jerusalem of those who resist, while that may be true this will be "for show", and also in hopes that some will "recant and repent" under the pressure of the spectacle. No doubt there will be many "tele-trials". Apologies if I'm not understanding.

B) i) Antichrist's religion (link) definitely starts developing the first half; it reaches full-blown dominance at the mid-point.

ii) Can't saw where it is constructed (in situ, as you say, seems most likely), nor how long it takes (not long at all, I would imagine); but at approximately the Tribulation's midpoint this "abomination causing desolation" idol will stand in the outer court of the temple.

iv) The scriptures which warn about it aren't inconsistent with the idol's erection not being absolutely instantaneous; but as soon as "there's no doubt" on the part of each individual, that's the time to flee; I would imagine we are talking about a space of days rather than weeks here.

v) Don't remember writing this (it seems feasible). Can you give me the reference?

Hope that your busy time goes well for you.

Keeping you in my prayers.

In Jesus Christ our dear Lord and Savior,

Bob L.

Question #20:

Dear Professor

Thank you for your quick reply. Yes it is good when one’s health improves. Though will be better to be 30 again, forever.

Latest questions:

v) Reference is BB 2B. 1. The Abomination of Desolation (about 8th little paragraph down)
(13) Revelation 13:13-15 (verse 14) ... even commanding the inhabitants of the earth to make an image of the beast, [that is] of him who received the [deadly] stroke of the sword and [yet] came [back] to life.

“As is clear from this description, this idol will be most impressive to the unbelievers who view it and come to worship it. In our age of skepticism and worldliness, that is saying quite a lot. We may therefore expect this idol to be both mammoth in its proportions, incredibly and persuasively life-like in its functioning, and awe-inspiring in its verbal pronouncements.”

Professor, depending on how one reads these scriptures, various time scenarios could be deduced. At a cursory reading, it sounds like the beast has been wounded, the false prophet then commands the inhabitants to make an image (after the return from battle of antichrist). As the false prophet performs these signs in the presence of the beast, it seems, from cursory reading, that construction begins after the wounding of antichrist. Therefore the idol is erected some time after the mid-point. (Or was he performing signs in the beast’s presence before the 2nd campaign against the south?)

Perhaps I did not understand on first reading, and I had assumed that it would mean funds would need to be raised in the first half of Tribulation so as the talking idol would be in place by the mid-point of the 7 years. The 1260 days of the woman in the wilderness seem to indicate the idol would have to have already been in place by the mid-point at antichrist’s return from battle.

I don’t know that our friend’s idea of perhaps a hologram quite fits the description bill either.

I am not clear on my understanding of this. I would appreciate any help.

Thank you as always for your encouragement.

In Jesus our dear Lord and Savior

Your student

Response #20:

Yes, the older I get, the more appealing the resurrection gets.

As to the recent question on timing, the erection of the idol takes place at the beginning of the Great Tribulation, so this is a "mid-way" event. I'm afraid I can't pin things down any closer than that, but for what it is worth, all of this mid-way events seem to me to be described as occurring in very rapid succession – which is why the command to flee is so insistent. Scripture doesn't say anything about the role of the false prophet before this point, but just as anti-Christ will manifest many of his soon to come to the fore characteristics during the first half of the Tribulation, only to be fully revealed as the beast at the midpoint, my guess would be that this will not be the first time the false prophet is heard of or from. So for those who know what the Bible has to say about all this, no doubt there will be plenty of indications ahead of time.

Your friend in Jesus Christ our dear Lord and Savior,

Bob L.

Question #21:

I have another concern. It seems like there are a lot of Christians supporting Trump but I feel as if neither parties and not one presidential candidate fears God. Trump said himself he’s never asked for forgiveness and his comments at the prayer breakfast weren’t too good. I’ve heard Christians call Trump a savior and even comparing him to Jesus! Should we just stay out of politics? I do realize both sides have a lot of deceit which is why I don’t associate with conservatives or liberals. To me it just seems like a trap to get you to focus on things that don’t matter. I feel as if a lot of Christians are very judgmental too nowadays. It’s very sad. How do you deal with all of that? Also what do you think about Jared Kushner? He was the reason why the embassy was moved to Jerusalem which is where the 3rd temple is supposed to be built. The U.N. Ambassador called him a “hidden genius” as well. He use to own the building on 666 fifth avenue also. Since the Tribulation is so close, I guess I’m asking do you suspect anyone of being the anti-christ or false prophet? We truly never know until 2026, but do you have your eye on anyone? Thanks man.

Response #21:

You asked: "Should we just stay out of politics?" That is my strong advice. Politics is the devil's game. He always backs both sides. If one side is sinful, you can bet the other side is downright evil – or sometimes both are (i.e., Nazis versus Communists). This world can't be changed and won't be until Jesus changes it Himself on His return. Not too far out now, even if there is a lot of "bad road" between here and there. I always urge believers to stick to their own knitting and leave changing the world to unbelievers who don't know it's impossible to do. As to the possibilities you ask about, it's natural for us to wonder, but you are right that we cannot know. And we may not know or even have a good idea of who the beast is / will be until after the Tribulation starts. Events will progress so rapidly then with the restraint of the Holy Spirit removed (2Thes.2:6-8), and with the devil then expending all of his carefully husbanded resources that things which might have taken years previously may take only days.

It will be "interesting times" indeed, and only believers who've diligently prepared in a spiritual way will be capable of navigating it well.

Yours in Jesus our dear Savior,

Bob L.

Question #22:

Hello Dr. Luginbill

I continue to view your email sight weekly and as always appreciate your hard work. A question I have after reading last week in reference to cults you addressed someone's question on the State of Israel and the year 1948 and date setting as your referred to it. You said it is a modern system of dating and only goes back to the sixth century AD and not biblical in any way. With that being said, explain, if you would, your feeling the time of Jesus return to be 2033, two thousand years after his resurrection at the age of 33. Perhaps my understanding is wrong that the State of Israel has to be returned to the Jewish people so the temple can be rebuilt so the antichrist can defile it. If 1948 is date setting is not your 2033 also? I do read an author, Jonathan Cahn, a messianic Jew, who does use dates in his book, i.e., The Harbinger and scripture reference to 9-11. Also, when the 2 witnesses appear, at the beginning of the tribulation, will we and would not all Christians know who they are and that the tribulation has begun?

I hope your summer has been pleasant and that now that school is started you have a wonderful semester.

Blessings and thanks,

Response #22:

Good to hear from you – and thanks so much for your good wishes (we're about halfway through the semester already!).

As to "date setting", I don't believe I've ever used that phrase. To that point, the two things you ask about are very different, even though they are both dates. The interpretation (and it is an interpretation as I always say; see the link) regarding 2033, to give the shortest version, is as you know arrived at by adding 2,000 years to the most important event in the history of the world: the cross (followed by the resurrection). If a person accepts as I do that the Church Age last two millennial days (just as the Age of Israel did and just as the Age of the Gentiles did) with the Millennium being the seventh millennial day (the seven days of human history being foreshadowed by and patterned after the seven days of re-creation), then 2033 is an obvious interpretation to make. If we used a different system of year calculation, we would still be doing the same thing, namely, adding two thousand years to the whatever-year-the-year-of-the-cross-is-designated to come up with the interpretation (e.g., 2786 AUC in the old Roman system – 14 years away; 5793 in the present Jewish system – also 14 years away).

On the other hand, the date of the foundation of the secular state of Israel means nothing in terms of numerology, because our system of identifying years by the numbers we use now is an arbitrary one invented in the sixth century, long after the New Testament (not to mention the OT) was written.

Is the foundation itself of significance? I do not believe so, not in prophetical terms. This state is not God's reconstitution of the Jewish nation; it was there for all intents and purpose before this official date and it has been there for many years now after that date with no prophetic significance.

Also, anyone reading the Bible carefully knows that the passages in the Old Testament which speak of this marvelous event, the regathering of Israel, make it clear that 1) the Messiah does it when He returns, and 2) every Jew returns. But today Israel is home to only a small minority of the Jewish population worldwide.

In addition, there have been some Jews living in Israel even after the two Roman devastations of that land, all through the empire and after the Moslem occupation. And the return of Jews from elsewhere in more significant numbers began in the 19th century (the Zionism movement). 1948 was the year when those non-believing Jews who had returned proclaimed Israel as a state, but nothing more.

It is certainly true that for the events of the Tribulation to unfold, certain things have to happen first. But that is true of all of the events which preceded 1948 and of everything which has followed. This is the way God has worked things out; He certainly could have done it differently. E.g., He certainly could have had no Jews in the land until the year before the Tribulation begins – and things would still go according to prophecy. Because what is clear is that there is no prophecy of any kind, that is, of any specific, datable events, mentioned in the Bible as occurring within the Church Age. That is because the Church Age is the mystery age; it was foreshadowed but never understood fully in Old Testament times, and so has no prophecy associated with it. All prophecy which OT scriptures contain deals with the end times beginning with the Tribulation and on until the end of time, but these do not begin until the Tribulation begins. So there is nothing in scripture about 1948. And there is nothing in scripture about 9/11.

I would counsel anyone to be wary about any would-be Bible teacher who uses numerology of any kind. That sort of thing does fascinate people, but it is possible to prove anything with it (cf. "Bible codes"). I also have to note that while I am thrilled to have anyone become a part of the family of the Church – and especially "to the Jew first" (Rom.1:16; 2:9-10) – the Messianic movement has some negative elements associated with it; some of these groups do not even believe in Jesus Christ as God. So I would take care on this individual you mention (see Q/A #10 at the link for a response to a question about one of his books).

As to the beginning of the Tribulation, there will be no doubt:

When he opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven for about half an hour. And I saw the seven angels who stand before God, and seven trumpets were given to them. Another angel, who had a golden censer, came and stood at the altar. He was given much incense to offer, with the prayers of all God’s people, on the golden altar in front of the throne. The smoke of the incense, together with the prayers of God’s people, went up before God from the angel’s hand. Then the angel took the censer, filled it with fire from the altar, and hurled it on the earth; and there came peals of thunder, rumblings, flashes of lightning and an earthquake.
Revelation 8:1-5 NIV

Hard to miss – and worldwide as "on the earth" tells us.

Indeed, the events which transpire in Israel in the Tribulation's early days will also be unmistakable – for any Christian who is closely following the Lord and who has grown spiritually and prepared in this area of the truth. But we also know that fully one third of the Church will apostatize. They will follow antichrist, believing him when he says that he IS the Christ. So knowing the truth and knowing and believing it in all of its detail is so very important. Those who do not when the Tribulation begins will be at a severe disadvantage. At that point, only a "crash course" is likely to protect them from being deceived. So there may be a great deal for all of us to do – those who have prepared in the truth.

Your friend in Jesus Christ our dear Lord and Savior,

Bob L.

Question #23:

Thank you for your quick response. Regarding Jonathan Cahn, yes he professes the saving grave of Jesus Christ.. He is Jewish by birth and his parents were from Russia and Germany during time of Hitler. When I mentioned 9-11 it was not because he felt that the Bible gave the date but rather his book The Harbinger relates that after 9-11 many in the government went on TV and all said "we will rebuild" and Senator Tom Daschle went on the Senate floor and read the scripture Isaiah 9:10. Just like Israel when they were destroyed by the Assryians because they would not repent and turn back to God American has done the same thing. We did not repent but instead said WE will rebuild, not with God's help will we turn to him and rebuild our nation but all on our own. So unless we as a nation humble ourselves and turn back to him we will be destroyed too. That was the message in his book.

Just for clarification when the tribulation starts with the opening of the seventh seal will the two witness Moses and Elijah also be here and will the 144,000 sent out by them be here and it all starts at one time. Seems to me that a lot of things will be happening at the start of those 7 years and continue on getting worse each year until our Lord returns at the last trumpet. Am I right on this? If you are correct then this could start in 2026, really just 6 short years. The way the world is spinning out of control and so much evil it doesn't surprise me.

One last question. The RC Pope Francis is really pushing the one world government and one world religion, pushing Chrislam, etc, could he be the false prophet or do you not feel this is the case?

Again, Dr. Luginbill, I appreciate you more than you will ever know. Your knowledge on the Bible and willingness to answer questions like mine is truly a blessing and for that I thank you.

Have a blessed night,

Response #23:

First of all, thanks so much for our kind words, my friend – they mean an awful lot to me.

This was the impression I did get about Mr. Cahn, that is, basic assessment: not dangerous / but not too helpful.

One of the characteristics of the Tribulation will be speed. What God does He will do quickly (Rev.1:1); and the removal of Holy Spirit restraint will allow the devil and antichrist to move at breakneck pace as well. As to the specific question, we know that Moses and Elijah and the 144,000 have completed their entire ministry by the mid-point of the Tribulation – including the rebuilding of a basic temple – because they are killed by the beast on his occupation of the land just before the Great Tribulation begins (Rev.11:1ff.). Also, the 144,000 are sealed as one of the first events of the Tribulation, so we can intuit that, yes, this ministry probably gets started immediately. That will probably be hard to miss as well. As to things getting worse and worse, that is also my sense of it. The first half is followed by the Great Tribulation; the trumpets end the first half and the bowls the second; the Great Apostasy intensifies as the Great Persecution unfolds. All the more reason to heed the following passage:

(34) "Watch out for yourselves lest your hearts be burdened down in debauchery and drunkenness and earthly cares, and that day fall upon you suddenly like a trap [snapping shut]. (35) For it will come upon all those who dwell upon the face of the earth. (36) So be alert at all times, praying that you might have the strength to endure all these things which are going to happen, and to stand before the Son of Man."
Luke 21:34-36

The last generation of the Church, that echelon which is still alive when the Lord returns, will have the privilege of never having to have died physically – but they'll pay a hefty price for it (enduring the entire Tribulation).

I doubt if any pope or any other traditional religious official will play any significant role in antichrist's religion . . . after he takes his seat in the temple and proclaims himself "God". That happens at the mid-point of the Tribulation right at the start of the Great Tribulation. Prior to that, antichrist will co-opt all of the world's religions, and since the RC church is a big one, it may be that the pope will have an out-sized role; but Hindus and Muslims and every other religion and cult will be involved as well.

Yours in our dear Lord and Savior Jesus Christ,

Bob L.

Question #24:

Slowly but surely it begins to sink in and make sense. I will continue to watch and read my Bible and pray that at the end, whatever route the Lord has for me, I will be found worthy.

Response #24:

Now that's a plan!

This is in fact all any of us can do. We know that the Lord is perfect so His plan is perfect. We know that He has promised to take care of us no matter what and so we know – and have to learn to accept fully in faith – that this will be the case even in the Tribulation.

(35) What will separate us from Christ's love? Tribulation? Or privation? Or persecution? Or hunger? Or destitution? Or danger? Or violence? (36) As it is written, "For your sake we are being put to death all day long. We were accounted as sheep for slaughter". (37) But in all such things we are decisively victorious through Him who loved us [enough to do what He did for us]. (38) For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, neither angelic nor human authorities, neither things present nor things to come, neither heavenly powers, (39) be they the highest [of the elect] or the lowest [of the fallen], nor any other created thing [on this earth] will be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Romans 8:35-39

So we set our hearts to trust Him no matter what may betide – in full confidence that He will bring us through even the deepest sea, even if He has to split it open for us.

Hallelujah for His plan!

In Jesus our dear Savior,

Bob L.

Question #25:

Dear Dr Luginbill,

I just wondered if you had read "The Oracle" by Jonathan Cahn. He says nothing about the return of the Lord in the 2070 area. This is my assessment based on the incremental slow process of Israel coming back in the land and how he shows that everything goes backwards to the starting point according to the law of Jubilees.

Thus currently we have progressed to the recognition of Jerusalem as capital of Israel by President Trump in 2017. 50 years earlier which corresponds to 1967 Jerusalem was retaken and the Israeli Army restored there whereas in 70AD it was destroyed in Jerusalem.

Unless you read the book what I'm saying maybe confusing. It may be that you are right about the Rapture occurring to mimic the crucifixion and Resurrection of Jesus 2000 years later. It's just that it may be 40 years hence.

Jonathan Cahn says nothing about this or Rapture timing. It is just an apologetic to show God's hand in history. This is just only my analysis from reading his book and my own study in Revelation.

A big factor to me is the worship of idols which I think occurs prior to Antichrist having universal power in Revelation 9:20 and 21. I believe that there will be wars prior to his coming and the destruction of much of the earth so that we will go back to primitive weapons and the worship of idols by those who are not believers as in the Roman Empire. The current state of wealth and debt will be gone nor the ability to refine oil or even make electric gadgets. Perhaps an electromagnetic pulse.

I'm curious to know your opinion on this as I respect your insights.

Response #25:

No, I've not read the book. And I am a little backed-up here at present, concentrating on this latest big thing as you know. I've finished the draft and done the first full edit of BB 6B Ecclesiology [now posted at the link]. Hope to have the first web version posted this coming Saturday (depending, it could run to the next week), bumps and lumps and all (anything you notice that's problematic I'm of course very grateful for having pointed out).

As to technology, I think it's probably obvious to any thoughtful Christian that we are approaching a critical mass of what is essentially a new tower of Babel, so that things can't really go on this way much longer. No doubt tech will play a big role in the beast's system, but that is one of those areas where we can't really go beyond what is written. We'll definitely "know it when we see it".

Neither 1948 nor 1967 have any prophetic significance. There was a diaspora when the Romans destroyed Jerusalem and another after the Bar Kokhba revolt nearly a century later, but Jews have always had some small presence in the land throughout the centuries, and the Zionist return movement began in the 19th century. The critical point is that all actual biblical prophecy regarding the return makes it total (what we have so far is very partial) and makes it divinely and miraculously accomplished (what we have so far is entirely man-made) – and this return happens only after the second advent. On top of that, the calendar we now have wasn't even invented until the sixth century. So I don't think any of this can be used to forecast the Tribulation or second advent. The seven days of re-construction in Genesis give the pattern: six thousand year days before the Millennium, the seventh day of rest. That pattern can be seen in the first four days (through the dates the Bible provides), and we know about the Millennium, that it lasts a thousand years. Positing an even 2,000 for the Church Age thus seems reasonable. That would result in a 2033 return in my interpretation of things (see the link for the details: "The Specific Chronology of the Seven Days"), and give a start date for the Tribulation seven years prior.

Wishing you a blessed 2020!

In Jesus our dear Savior,

Bob L.

Question #26:

Hello Professor,

I'm glad to hear that your upper level classes survived Louisville's crackdown on the classics. I'm still loving your teaching these days and feel so grateful that the Lord brought me to you.

I thought you might like this link about a massive asteroid that NASA picked up on its systems that will “pass by the earth” in the spring of 2029. The scientists say that there is a one in 100,000 chance that it hits earth. Amazingly, this lines up almost perfectly with your interpretation of the trumpet judgments in the first half of the tribulation. Could be nothing but I thought you might be interested.


Your student in Christ,

Response #26:

Good to hear from you, my friend – and thanks for the encouraging words!

Interesting link – seems pretty closely timed to the fourth trumpet judgment.

Say, how is your health? Did the second operation go OK?

Keeping you in my prayers daily, my friend.

In Jesus our dear Lord and Savior,

Bob L.

Question #27:

My health has been pretty crummy. First arm is still healing and unfortunately I developed palsy in two of the fingers after the operation. There's no reason to grumble about it though because the Lord knows what's best. I'm trying to take everything one day at a time with discipline and faith even though I am so far from perfect. The more I learn the more I know how far I have to go.

On another note, since we only have seven years left I don't think there's any chance that I will be able to learn the ancient languages in time especially since I'm not very good at languages. I'm thinking that the best way to prepare to be a teacher and leader when times get rough is to know the scripture, your teachings, and Pastor Omo’s teachings to the best of my ability. Do you agree with that conclusion?

Thank you for your prayers Bob. I have been praying for your ministry too.

Response #27:

Sorry to hear this – but good for you that you have a positive attitude in spite of pressure (I wouldn't have guessed from your first email). That's a great witness.

I appreciate your determination in the Lord, my friend! As to the languages, my advice would be to listen carefully to the Spirit about that. Seven years is a long time; our friend was conversant with both Greek and Hebrew in only a couple of years and that without any direct instruction. Not saying you are not right with your initial take; only that I wouldn't limit myself right off the bat. Listening to pastor-teacher Omo and reading Ichthys are pretty good prep in my opinion, however!

I greatly appreciate your prayers too, my friend! I'll keep praying for your health.

In Jesus Christ our Lord,

Bob L.

Question #28:

What's up doc,

Question for you about Dan 9:27. I'll provide your interpretation below:

"Then he (i.e., antichrist) will confirm an agreement (or "covenant"; Hebrew, ברית, beriyth) with the powerful [in Israel] during [that] one [remaining] week (i.e., the 70th week, the Tribulation), but in the middle of the week (i.e., just prior to the Tribulation's mid-point) he will put a halt to sacrifice and offering (i.e., eliminating Moses and Elijah and interrupting the temple rites)."

From my upbringing, I would say modern day christianity believes the antichrist (AC) will come along with some kind of 7yr deal with Israel and it's this deal that starts the Trib. So the AC and Israel get together, they create a deal/treaty/pact that's for a 7yr period and this is what starts the end-times timer. Most christians are looking for some kind of 7yr treaty as the smoking gun for the start.

However, your interpretation above gives me a different understanding. How I'm reading your interpretation is that the end-times start, and then at some point within the 7yr window, the AC creates a deal with Israel for an unknown length of time. He confirms the agreement during the week.

My question then, is how solid is your interpretation? Can I dial down into the english and pull out these differences in word meanings? The translations I'm looking at say the AC makes a deal with Israel that is for a specific 7yr period, but yours provides a different understanding. I hope my question makes sense. Thanks for your continued hard work and for your ministry, it's greatly appreciated.


Response #28:

Good to hear from you, my friend.

How goes things with you personally?

On your question, if I weren't convinced of the truth of this translation and interpretation, I wouldn't teach it. So I do consider it solid. If you mean, how easy would it be to convince others of it, that is a subjective issue. After all, most evangelicals still believe in a pre-Tribulation rapture, despite the fact that the Bible clearly teaches no such thing.

On the specifics, while the beast is probably already around (not identified, however), the descriptions of his rise to power (outlined in the same study the quote comes from, CT 3B at the link) do seem to indicate very clearly that he doesn't come to control mystery Babylon or the revived Roman empire in the first five minutes of the Tribulation. It will be an astoundingly quick rise, but months at least as opposed to minutes. So any treaty with Israel would not be inked the moment the Tribulation begins but at least some time after it starts. That is what the logic demands and also what the language of Daniel 9:27 admits.

As to the commencement of the Tribulation, however, there is no need to be concerned that we might "miss it", that is, if we are paying the least bit of attention. Apart from all of the other prophesied events which will be unmistakable, scripture clearly states that the beginning will be punctuated by indisputable signs:

(1) And when He opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven for about half an hour. (2) And I saw the seven angels who stood before God, and seven trumpets were given to them. (3) And another angel with a golden censer came and stood by the altar, and much incense was given to him so that he might offer it for the prayers of the saints on the golden altar in front of the throne. (4) And smoke from the incense went up from the hand of the angel before God for the prayers of the saints. (5) Then the angel took the incense holder and filled it with fire from the altar and threw it to the earth. And there occurred thunderous voices and flashes of lightning and an earthquake.
Revelation 8:1-5

A worldwide lightning storm, earthquake and supernatural voices of a thunderous nature will be pretty hard to miss.

If you haven't already noticed, let me call your attention to a major new posting at Ichthys: BB 6B: Ecclesiology: the study of the Church.

Keeping you in my prayers.

In Jesus our dear Savior,

Bob L.

Question #29:

Hello Dr.,

Sorry for not replying sooner. This week there was (still is) some problems with my internet connection. It has become very erratic; but there are some signs that, whatever the issue, they are beginning to deal with it. We expect the crop to mature during the 3rd week of next month; harvesting will start during that same week. We wait, and we pray.

Doc, a small query here for you. I am surrounded by Muslims, RCs, Anglicans, Lutherans, pagans, Pentecostals, etc. Pentecostals in my country mostly involve themselves with "the spirit world" in the guise of 'speaking in tongues', 'healing', 'exorcisms', 'dream-interpretation', 'prosperity gospel', getting rid of 'ancestral spirits'(!), etc. In short, they deal with demons. AND the result is they are totally messed up. My point is, I am so alone! I know that I have all of you guys to correspond with via the internet. I also know that, with the Lord by my side, I can, and have been able so far, to face the tension of being alone. I suppose I am wondering about the time of the tribulation; what if I continue to be alone even during the tribulation itself? I have read the CT, and have seen the "tribulational code of conduct" in that excellent series; however, what if I am the only one around in my part of town? People around here are so totally not interested in the real truth! Sensationalism, excitement, fun, they love that; but the teachings of the Bible, no way. Its staggering, Doc. I do not know if there is a question in my ramblings in here. But I would like some of your very wise, very highly valued input, my friend.

In Jesus our King,

Response #29:

No worries, my friend. Thanks for the update.

As to the situation around you, I have to say that while the percentages no doubt are different, the categories of religions you describe and more particularly the fact that all the nominal Christians are mostly just that, Christian in name only, is strikingly similar to what we see over here in the states. So when these "Christians" look down on your for not attending a brick-and-mortar church building, we get the same thing over here. The main difference I suppose is that I and most of those with whom I correspond in the US are living in urban areas, and as a result there is not so much of this "small town" effect where everyone knows everyone else' business. I spent the first five plus years of my life in a very small rural town, then my family moved to Chicago. That was quite a difference and not all for the good I thought at the time. However, when I messed up in kindergarten in Chicago the whole neighborhood didn't know about it before I got home (as had been the case before, women calling my mom before I got a chance to work up an excuse).

But in terms of having a network of believer acquaintances and friends who are truly dedicated to the search for the truth and to living and sharing that truth, that is a pretty rare thing during these days of Laodicea anywhere on this earth. I had a nice chat the other day with a correspondent who was in Louisville for the weekend, a man with whom I've been exchanging emails for many years. It was the first time I'd met him face to face, and this sort of thing is a very rare occurrence for me. Just about everyone I've known from the past who are learning from Ichthys or doing their own ministries live elsewhere and a long way off at that – and that is also true of folks like yourself whom it's been my pleasure to get to know through this ministry. Without the internet, it's hard to see how a ministry like this could work – but God provided.

So be encouraged, my friend. We are all fighting the same fight down here (1Pet.5:9). As far as the Tribulation is concerned, we know that a third of actual believers are going to apostatize and join the beast. So even if we are not alone now, we well could be then. But of course we are NOT alone . . . because the Lord is with us. He will never abandon us or forsake us. He and His Spirit will be with us all the way to the end, whether it is our lot to depart this earth before those seven years begin, or be martyred for Him therein, or endure until His blessed return. In any case we can enjoy sweet fellowship with Him at all times every day, through spending time in His Word, through prayer, and by walking with Him every step of the way. As a young man, David grew exceptionally close to the Lord, and part of the reason for that was precisely that he had no one else. So whether it's a good or a bad thing from the human point of view (and we all experience the pain loneliness brings when we have to endure it), the Lord uses that too for good as He uses all things for good for those who truly love Him (Rom.8:28). We all need to learn to lean more heavily on Him at all times and in all circumstance. For we are all going to need that once the darkness falls.

I'm keeping you and your situation in my prayers daily.

In Jesus Christ our Lord,

Bob L.

Question #30:

Hello Professor,

Thank you very much for your reply. Thanks also for the encouragement, the sympathy. Knowing that the Lord is always with us is a wonderful comfort; to be truthful, He has been my main comforter in the past 3 - 4 years. Talking with most members of my family has mostly been like a painful duty; all of them are busy chasing after money - God is someone on the periphery for them. As for the religious ones among them, they feel like little kids - spiritually. So, I thank you for that advice; this is a fight, a race, and the main thing is to keep my focus on the finish line - and that trophy!

Thank you for your sorely needed prayers. I keep you and your wonderful ministry always in my prayers.

In Jesus our True Comfort,

Response #30:

Thanks for your good words, my friend.

You are a great encouragement to me – and I thank you for your prayers.

I will most definitely be keeping you in mine day by day as well.

Looking forward to cheering you on at the judgment seat of Christ.

In Jesus,

Bob L.


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