February 9, 2015
A MESSAGE OF HOPE FROM DR JACK VAN IMPE
The Reign of the Antichrist
Before we close this chapter, it’s important to review the activity of the Antichrist for the eighty-four months that he appears on earth. His reign begins when he makes a peace contract with Israel and the nations. Daniel 9:27 says, “And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease.” The Hebrew word for week in the above passage is shabua, a time period of seven years, or eighty-four months.
In the midst of the week or shabua-after forty-two months-he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease. His first item of business is to make peace with Israel, an agreement he honors for three and one-half years. At that point, however, Russia begins its march southward to Israel to break the peace contract that the Antichrist originally made with Israel. Then Gog and Magog (Russia) go up against the land of unwalled villages when Israel is at rest (Ezekiel 38:11).
We know that since she became a nation in 1948, Israel has neither been at rest nor at peace. Soon a peace program of seven years duration will be contracted. But it will be short-lived. Russia ruins it. During this battle the Antichrist comes to his end (Daniel 11:45). Yes, he actually dies, but Revelation 13:3 says, “his deadly wound was healed: and all the world wondered [marveled] after the beast.” In other words, the Antichrist is resurrected. He comes back to life. That’s why everyone marvels at him, literally standing in awe of his great political prowess and enormous ability to move the minds and hearts of people globally.
To the world, he appears to be like Jesus, returning to life. It’s at this point he magnifies himself above every God (Daniel 11:36) and exalts himself above all gods to a deluded and deceived world (2 Thessalonians 2:4). He literally says, “I am God.” Today, as you watch an acceleration of the New Age movement and its “I am God” philosophy, crystals, shamans, chants, and channeled messages that permeate every segment of our society-even entering the church of Jesus Christ-be aware that this global satanic activity has already proved instrumental in preparing the way for this great deceiver to set himself up for worship (Revelation 13:15), a time when he literally “wears out the saints” (Daniel 7:25). This activity takes place through to the end of the seven years when Jesus Christ ultimately returns and destroys the evil one with the brightness of His glory, casting him into the lake of fire where he remains forever and ever (Revelation 19:20).
- Hitherto is the end of the matter. As for me Daniel, my cogitations much troubled me, and my countenance changed in me: but I kept the matter in my heart.
When his dream had been explained by the angel Gabriel, Daniel felt a sorrow of heart, for he now began to understand what would one day happen to his people, the Jews. His dream had helped him catch a glimpse of the terrible times of persecution that would fall upon them. He was rightly disturbed and confused because he was not totally privy to understanding the great blessings-the rest of the story-that would ultimately come to his people-blessings we will discover as we continue to unwrap the sealed mysteries of the time of the end, even as we see Daniel’s humanity surface when he is physically and psychologically devastated by the vision he sees in chapter eight.
We have come to the close of the section that addresses God’s rule over the Gentiles. To help you understand where Daniel is emotionally at this point, I’d like you to put yourself in his position for a moment. You have just dreamed something tantamount to a nightmare in chapter seven that has unnerved you. You fainted; you became anxious-so fearful that you needed help to interpret what you experienced. Now, you are taking your agitation and dismay to the next practical level by asking yourself:
If three more Gentile kingdoms, as suggested by the dream, are supposed to arrive on the scene to dominate the world after Babylon, what will be the fate of my people, the Jews, during that period of time? How long will their trials last? What will be the end result?
These vexing questions are coursing through Daniel’s mind, but still, he has no answers.
But God never leaves His people in a state of confusion. For that reason, God begins to provide Daniel with specific revelations that relate to the future history of His people. With that brief background, we now spend the remainder of the book reviewing these revelations, giving special emphasis to interpreting the prophecies that address “the time of the end”-predictions that not only relate to Israel during the latter days, but also speak to you and me-Jew or Gentile-today.
- In the third year of the reign of king Belshazzar a vision appeared unto me, even unto me Daniel, after that which appeared unto me at the first.
- And I saw in a vision; and it came to pass, when I saw, that I was at Shushan in the palace, which is in the province of Elam; and I saw in a vision, and I was by the river of Ulai.
The year is 551 B.C. Daniel sees himself at the Palace of Shushan, a city in Persia about 230 miles east of Babylon and 120 miles north of the Persian Gulf. Daniel makes it clear that this vision took place before his troubling dream in chapter seven. What we are about to learn is that the vision Daniel now sees again projects him into the future when the superpower Medo-Persia would rule the then-known world-a partial rerun of what Daniel has already learned in earlier dreams.
- Then I lifted up mine eyes, and saw, and, behold, there stood before the river a ram which had two horns: and the two horns were high; but one was higher than the other, and the higher came up last.
- I saw the ram pushing westward, and northward, and southward; so that no beasts might stand before him, neither was there any that could deliver out of his hand; but he did according to his will, and became great.
- And as I was considering, behold, an he goat came from the west on the face of the whole earth, and touched not the ground: and the goat had a notable horn between his eyes.
- ;And he came to the ram that had two horns, which I had seen standing before the river, and ran unto him in the fury of his power.
- And I saw him come close unto the ram, and he was moved with choler against him, and smote the ram, and brake his two horns: and there was no power in the ram to stand before him, but he cast him down to the ground, and stamped upon him: and there was none that could deliver the ram out of his hand.
- Therefore the he goat waxed very great: and when he was strong, the great horn was broken; and for it came up four notable ones toward the four winds of heaven.
- And out of one of them came forth a little horn, which waxed exceeding great, toward the south, and toward the east, and toward the pleasant land.
- And it waxed great, even to the host of heaven; and it cast down some of the host and of the stars to the ground, and stamped upon them.
- Yea, he magnified himself even to the prince of the host, and by him the daily sacrifice was taken away, and the place of his sanctuary was cast down.
- And an host was given him against the daily sacrifice by reason of transgression, and it cast down the truth to the ground; and it practiced, and prospered.
- Then I heard one saint speaking, and another saint said unto that certain saint which spake, How long shall be the vision concerning the daily sacrifice, and the transgression of desolation, to give both the sanctuary and the host to be trodden under foot?
- And he said unto me, Unto two thousand and three hundred days; then shall the sanctuary be cleansed.
New Symbolism-Same Message
Daniel’s been here before. The difference is that in this vision the symbols have been changed. Just as the bear appeared in chapter seven as rising higher on one side, so, in similar fashion, there is now a picture of one of the horns of the ram rising higher than the other, indicating again the dominance the Persians exercised over their partners, the Medes. So far, this is not new information, but this reiteration does not diminish the significance of the drama.
The ram with the two horns standing before the Ulai River again represents Medo-Persia and corresponds to the arms and breast of silver we saw in chapter two and to the appearance of the bear in chapter seven. Historically, this is 100 percent correct, as we would expect. It’s God’s Word. We know that the symbolic, protective force of the Medes and the Persians was a ram with a sharp horn. Not only that, but the Persian ruler, when engaging in foreign military expeditions, proudly wore the head of a ram on his head as a symbol of his enormous power.
Now the ram goes into action, lowering its fierce head and butting at prey to the west, north, and south. Ultimately, as our history books tell us, Medo-Persia laid waste Babylonia, Asia Minor, and Syria to the west; Armenia, and the area of the Caspian Sea to the north; and then conquered Ethiopia and Egypt to the south. Symbolized by a ram, the Medo-Persian Empire butted up against virtually every nation and principality in sight and soon became the greatest power on the face of the earth.
So far, this is more of a confirmation of Daniel’s earlier dream than anything else, and such confirmation continues as we now see the nation of Greece symbolized by a goat, the equivalent of the brass stomach and thighs of Nebuchadnezzar’s image in chapter two, and the leopard with wings in chapter seven. So fleet of foot is this goat that when it runs its feet do not touch the ground-an apt description of the awesome power of the swift, far-reaching campaigns of the Greco-Macedonian army.
Suddenly, however, the vision provides us with additional, detailed information, more than we saw in Daniel’s earlier dream. Greece is not only the goat, but now we see a great horn appear between its eyes, a symbol of Greece’s first great monarch, Alexander the Great. There had not been a military strategist the likes of Alexander in the annals of history. Son of the great militarist Philip of Macedon and student of Aristotle, Alexander, in the course of his short life, conquered one and one half million square miles. While in power, he was revered by all as a young king with singular skills and enormous intelligence, amazing the world with his military prowess.
His crowning victory came with the destruction of the once-invincible Medo-Persian empire in less than a three-year interval- 334-331 B.C. But he did not live long. He died of malaria and syphilis at age thirty-two, lamenting that there were no more worlds to conquer. During the final years of his life, Alexander spent as much time indulging his passion for sex, immoral conduct, and alcohol as he did in destroying his foes. In the end, Alexander’s true enemy lay within.
FROM THE HEART OF DR. REXELLA VAN IMPE
Is God Magic?
A little boy asked his mother one day, “How can God love everybody? Is He magic?”
He couldn’t understand how anyone — not even God — could love everyone. After all, there are so many of us, and some of us are so unlovable. To a child’s way of thinking it would take nothing short of magic to be that loving.
You and I know that God is much more than magic. He’s our all-powerful heavenly Father! In John 13:34,35, Jesus said to His disciples, A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.
Jesus knew how unlovable people can be. He knew how unappreciative, unkind, thoughtless, selfish, quick to judge and criticize, and very mean we humans can act. Even within that intimate circle of the twelve disciples, there was envy, jealousy, and even murder. And these were the men upon whom Jesus was counting. The spread of the gospel depended upon the disciples showing love to each other and to others. So to these men, only a few short hours before His crucifixion, Jesus gave the supreme command, “Love one another.” And it should be our number one priority today.
But that’s just it. We don’t love one another as we should. In fact, a good many of us Christians are downright unloving much of the time. So how do we get the love of God in our lives?
Where do we begin?
The place to begin is with the people around us — those in our homes, in our places of work, in our friendships, and in our churches. Someone has said we need “an observable love and openness.” I like that. Love isn’t love until it begins at home.
I heard of a woman whose husband was very outgoing, charming, and loving to everyone outside his home. But, often, to his family he was moody and irritable. He wasn’t always outgoing, charming, and loving to them. In fact, his moodiness and his venting his anger and frustrations on his wife and children were destroying the love within his home.
One day in an effort to help him see what he was doing, his wife asked, “Honey, why don’t you save some of your charm for us?” That took courage, but it helped.
Of course, we all need a place where we can let some steam off, let our hair down, and kick our shoes off and relax with those who will understand and not misjudge us. But there must be a balance whereby we also remember to show our love. Continual unloving mistreatment of those dearest to us will drive them away. I’ve heard such sad stories through the years of how people’s hearts have become hard and cold because the love they once had for each other had not been nurtured.
Our example is Jesus. I’m sure He didn’t always find it easy to show love. The Bible tells us that Jesus was tempted in all points as we are (see Hebrews 2:18). When the self-righteous Pharisees tried to trip Jesus up, it would have been easy for Him to withhold His love from those who were cruel, arrogant, and unjust. But Jesus never yielded to that temptation. He showed love in the most impossible of human situations. Jesus was love in action. He demonstrated His compassion over and over again in His dealings with those who desperately needed help, healing, and forgiveness.
Let love be your aim
The Apostle Paul gave the Corinthian Christians a goal that should be foremost in our minds as well. He said, “Let love be your aim” (see 1 Corinthians 14:1). Those words were preceded by the great love chapter in the Bible, 1 Corinthians 13. Those verses are so familiar to everyone, but perhaps their familiarity has dimmed their meaning. Let’s look at them.
Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity [love], I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.
And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not [love], I am nothing.
And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not [love], it profiteth me nothing.
[Love] suffereth long, and is kind; [love] envieth not; [love] vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,
Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;
Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth;
Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things. [Love] never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away. And now abideth faith, hope, [love], these three; but the greatest of these is [love] (1 Corinthians 13:1-8,13).
What a beautiful description of love! This chapter describes love in three ways — what it is, what it isn’t, and what it does.
- very patient and kind
- enduring, without weakening
- able to bear up under anything
- ready to believe the best of others
- loyal no matter the cost
- a growing thing — growing out of God’s love for and in us.
Love is not:
- jealous or envious
- boastful or proud (inflated or puffed up with pride)
- conceited and arrogant
- touchy, fretful, or resentful
- rude and haughty
- irritable or easily provoked
- selfish and self-seeking
- glad about injustice.
- rejoice in the truth
- not hold grudges
- hardly notice when others do it wrong
- not demand its own way
- hope all things
- stand its ground in defending someone it loves
- not fail — does not fade out, become obsolete, or come to an end.
How loving are you?
Do you want to measure your “love level”? Here’s an exercise that really works. Try substituting “I” in place of the word love in 1 Corinthians 13. Does it read right? Is that an accurate description of you? Can you honestly say, “I am very patient and kind. I am not easily provoked. I do not hold grudges?
The Bible has so much to say about love. Here are some other verses to help us understand the nature of real love. First John 4:8 says, He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love. That verse says God is love. That is His nature. He is a heavenly Father who has divine compassion. And if we are His children, we must love, too — and not just those who love us, but even the unlovable. Jesus said, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; that ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven…For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same?…Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect (Matthew 5:44-46,48).
One day a so-called expert on Moses’ law came to Jesus to test Him. He asked, “Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?”
Notice Jesus’ reply: “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself.”
The man, wanting to justify his lack of love for some people, asked, “And who is my neighbor?” (Luke 10:25-29).
You see, he was so much like us. He wanted to love the lovable, those who were easy to love. But Jesus said we are to love without discrimination, the way He loves us.
It’s never too late
Perhaps you feel you’ve been so unloving in the past, that there is no way you can salvage your relationships. It’s never too late with the help of the Lord. It may take time, but God can do a work of healing in your heart so that you genuinely love others. His Word to you is simply this: Commit thy way unto the Lord; trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass (Psalm 37:5).
CHANGED LIVES-one at a time
Just wanted to express my thanks for your ministry in Utica, NY 45 years ago. Our family came to your meeting one evening and at the end of the service I was convicted and convinced of God’s call, but somehow felt stuck to my chair and could not come forward. On the way out I told this to my sister and she said she had the same experience, so we vowed that the next night we would respond to the invitation no matter what. At the end of the next meeting we were so excited that we jumped up before you finished getting the words out of your mouth and stood ready to receive Christ’s forgiveness and give our lives to Him. Of course God has shown Himself faithful all these years and I just wanted to thank you for your faithfulness in preaching the Gospel and bringing God’s love and truth to so many.
Dear Mr. & Mrs. Van Impe,
I just want to say thank you for your program and ministry. I have been blessed for many years by your teaching and preaching. Thank you for ministering the Word of God to people so faithfully and without compromise, and for exposing heresy and darkness. Praise God! I am truly blessed by you and other senior saints who serve the Lord with all their hearts. I appreciate everything you do.
Thank you & God Bless You,
Jennifer in California
Thank you for not being a watered down preacher I can’t believe how people are straddling the fence. Love you so much
HIGHLIGHTED PRODUCT OFFERS
Beware: False Prophets, Damnable Heresies & Doctrines of Demons
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- Where is false prophecy rampant in the Church today?
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The Final Three Popes Signal Christ’s Return
Are we now living in the era of the final three Popes? How do these final three Popes signal Christ’s imminent return?
Acclaimed Bible scholar and teacher Dr. Jack Van Impe draws upon his lifetime of research and study to make a definitive case for Christ’s imminent return.
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