November 5, 2012
What about nuclear war? The Bible says the
“elements shall melt with fervent heat.”
Would this refer to nuclear devastation?
Let’s look at what the Bible says about this kind of firepower-and when such annihilation might occur. We read in 2 Peter 3:10 a clear description of the last days: “But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up.” God does not need man’s modern inventions to produce the mass devastation mentioned in this text. Atoms have been here since God created heaven and earth (Genesis 1:1). Only in our day has science learned to harness what has always existed. God could have brought the components together at any time to produce the effects predicted in this prophecy. This text pictures the renovation of the world. Since God’s Word promises a final day of rest, there can be no complete renovation of the earth until Christ has reigned for one thousand years. Therefore, this text refers to events to be fulfilled after the Millennium-the thousand-year reign of Christ. However, scores of other texts predict nuclear war for the Tribulation Hour.
Here’s the startling truth portrayed in this portion of scripture: Humanity today has the potential to carry out that which prophecy has long predicted for the human race. Because science has harnessed this power, and because God’s predictions for the Tribulation Hour promise massive fiery devastation, the hour is most certainly at hand. God is able to carry out everything mentioned in Revelation 8:7 and 9:18. He, the omnipotent One, needs no assistance from the world’s Atomic Energy Commissions or the Pentagon. These verses indicate that humans will use atoms during the Tribulation period and at the end of the Millennium. Modem science tells us there are three primary effects of an A- or H-bomb blast. First, there is the tremendous mushrooming effect as it ascends into the heavens upon detonation. Second, as the blast begins its descent, it disintegrates, dissolves, and melts even steel. In fact, a five-hundred-foot steel tower melted into nothingness in the desert of New Mexico during past experiments. Finally, the heat made the same desert a blazing inferno.
Now, observe the statement Peter made under the direction of the Holy Spirit nineteen centuries ago. First, the heavens shall pass away with a great noise. Second, the elements shall melt with fervent heat. God said that the elements would melt. Go to any library and make a study of atomic weaponry. The materials will be classified under the letter E under the term elements-the very word God used. Think of it! Twentieth-century scientists continue to use the same language God employed nineteen hundred years ago. Finally, Peter states, “The earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up” (2 Peter 3:10). The three major effects of nuclear detonations are identical to Peter’s prophecies and the catastrophic bombardments of earth predicted for the coming Tribulation Hour. In numerous other scriptural texts, undoubtedly, World War HI will be one of incineration. Revelation 9:18 states, “By these three was the third part of men killed, by the fire, and by the smoke, and by the brimstone.” I have stood in Japan, near Hiroshima, and remembered with sadness the reports of mayhem and destruction that emanated from the two Japanese cities struck by the atomic bomb during World War II. My mind was troubled. Then I thought about the Tribulation Hour. Zechariah 14:12 pictures an atomic devastation beyond comprehension. The prophet said, “Their flesh shall consume away while they stand upon their feet, and their eyes shall consume away in their holes, and their tongue shall consume away in their mouth.” This is the precise effect of humankind’s newest weapon-the neutron bomb that destroys people but not property! All of this could take place in the near future. Then, after the millennial reign of Christ, the final atomic renovation of 2 Peter 3:10 will occur.
While believers will not endure the horror of the Tribulation, we must know the times so as to be faithful witnesses. That is why we must study and take the time to understand the prophecies in this startling chapter. They are vivid reminders that the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ is near. At a time when the world mocks His return, reveling in its atomic weaponry and false sense of security, and during an era when the sixth day is about to expire, Christ could return momentarily. The clock is ticking away its last fateful seconds. Little time remains. If you do not have a relationship with Jesus Christ and have not accepted Him as your Savior and Lord, you, too, will be left behind with those who refuse to believe. All laughter will end when the fire begins to fall (Genesis 19:14, 24, 25; Luke 17:28-30). It will then be eternally too late. “Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation” (2 Corinthians 6:2).
In Conclusion …
I have an important question for you.
In Matthew 24:3, Christ’s disciples asked, “What shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world [literally, age]?” The Savior proceeded to provide a list of cataclysmic world events, which would both usher in His return and culminate in the Day of the Lord. He added in Luke 21:28, “And when these things begin to come to pass [or begin to occur simultaneously], then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh.” Concerning this great day, the apostle Paul writes in 1 Thessalonians 5:1-3, “But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you. For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night. For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them.”
Never in the pages of world history have we witnessed such a proliferation of the signs Jesus predicted would be in place immediately before His return. No longer are the days of simultaneous war, famine, pestilence, earthquakes, and cultic activity limited to the pages of the Bible. All we need to do today is glance at the morning headlines or listen for five minutes to CNN (or watch the tawdry afternoon television “peep shows”) to realize that these signs of Christ’s return are in evidence worldwide and increasing both in frequency and intensity. Is it any wonder that the scientists who control the famed “doomsday clock” are moving its hands ever closer to midnight?
Prophecy: History Written in Advance
The questions I have tried my best to answer in the preceding newsletters have dealt with the “tip of the iceberg” when it comes to the stream of end-time events that will usher in the Tribulation-a period of unparalleled terror. I remind you, Christians will not be a part of this horrendous time (Revelation 3:10). In answer to your many questions, I have endeavored to deal with most of the major New Testament prophecies that relate to the return of our Lord in the light of current international events. Remember that prophecy is simply history written in advance. It is God’s declaration and description of future events. As such, prophecy cannot, has not, and will never fail in even the smallest detail until all has been fulfilled. The day of that ultimate fulfillment is upon us. My personal prayer is that, upon completing this book, you will renew your vow of love, service, and allegiance to the Savior. If you do not yet know the Lord of lords and King of kings, it is my earnest prayer that you will open your heart and your life to Jesus today. Do not be left behind. Do not say, “I wish I had taken the words of prophecy more seriously.”
Will it be easy for us in the years before the Tribulation? I think not. We will still be compelled to deal with runaway crime, abortions, drug abuse, plagues, pestilence, AIDS, wars, and rumors of wars, and an unprecedented hostility toward the gospel. The question is, Will you be strong in your love for Christ, or will you sell your birthright for a few thrills during the challenging times that are sure to lie ahead? Will you be an end-time hero for the faith? Alternatively, will you be found wanting? The apostle John, thrown into a cauldron of boiling oil, survived the painful ordeal but was disfigured for life and banned to the isle of Patmos. The beloved apostle Paul was beheaded. Two of the New Testament writers, Jude and Peter, were crucified. Another Gospel writer, James, was battered to death with a fuller’s club.
Now let us look at the larger picture: Soon the great hour will have arrived, and all God’s children will be present as the investigation begins. What will you say as you stand with such an array of heroes-believers who gave their all and who proved their first love for Christ during an entire lifetime and even unto death? Only you know the answer. Christ’s return may be tomorrow, next week, next month, or next year. We do not know the day or the hour when Jesus will break through the blue to call us home. However, we do know that it is near, even at the doors. Therefore, my closing questions to you are: Are you ready for Christ’s imminent return? Could you bear the investigative judgment if it were to take place tomorrow? Would you be ashamed, embarrassed, red-faced, even brokenhearted? Would tears of sorrow flow from your eyes for an entire millennial age? Is your present disobedience worth such heartache? Would you not rather serve God with all your heart and hear Him say with a loud voice: “Well done, thou good and faithful servant” (Matthew 25:21)? It is not too late to make a change, to reverse your lifestyle, and put Christ first in your life. If you do not know the Savior, I urge you to obey John 1:12 and Romans 10:13. If you are away from the Lord, I plead with you to act upon 1 John 1:9, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” Do it. Make the right decision. Then live the remainder of your days for Him, short as those days might be. It will be worth it all when we see Jesus. Maranatha! The King is coming!
FROM THE HEART OF DR. REXELLA VAN IMPE
“I Almost Missed the Blessing!”
He was standing near the exit of a department store in the shopping mall – a quiet, unassuming man, neatly dressed in casual clothes. As I walked past him on my way out of the store, he glanced in my direction – then quickly looked again, obviously recognizing me.
“Mrs. Van Impe?”
“Yes, I’m Rexella Van Impe.”
“It’s so nice to see you in person. I feel like I’ve known you and your husband for many years – I used to attend your crusade services. Could you spare just a moment? I have a little story to share with you.”
“Of course,” I replied, stepping out of the doorway and to the side of the corridor. I felt perfectly comfortable and at ease with this “old friend” I’d never met before – he was no longer a stranger. “I’d love to hear your story.”
The man stretched out his right arm and pulled back the sleeve of his coat. His arm was atrophied and shorter than normal, with an extremely deformed hand. “I was born this way – with a right arm and hand that were shriveled and useless. As I grew up, I became more and more aware of my deformity. I felt that I was ‘damaged’ and worthless. I became as handicapped emotionally and mentally as I was physically.
“As a little boy, I started praying, ‘Oh, God, heal my hand and arm. Help me and give me a normal life.’ In my mind, I felt the only way my prayer could be answered would be to get a whole new arm and hand.
“Over the years, doctors performed three major operations on me – very involved, complicated reconstructive surgeries. The operations were successful in that they enabled me to gain much use of my right arm and hand. I learned to do lots of things – almost anything I wanted – with my repaired hand.”
As he spoke, the man demonstrated how he could move his arm freely and deftly use his still-twisted hand to pick up and manipulate various objects with obvious strength and dexterity.
With a wry smile, he continued his account. “But the surgeries didn’t help my mind and my feelings. They continued to be ‘deformed’ because my arm was still short and my hand was still twisted – not totally whole in appearance. Instead of being thankful for the tremendous improvement, I found myself thinking, ‘Why didn’t God answer my prayer and heal me? I still don’t have a right arm and hand that match my left side.’ And I went on feeling frustrated and limited for years.
“Then one day during my personal devotional time, I finished my Bible reading and was meditating. I again began to wonder why God hadn’t answered my boyhood prayers. Suddenly I became intensely aware of God’s presence, and He seemed to speak to me.”
“‘I answered your prayer!’ the Lord said. ‘You are whole. You can do just about anything with your right arm that you can do with your left. You have a good marriage and beautiful children. You have a profitable business. I have blessed you and met your needs. Why do you feel that your prayers were not answered?'”
“I was astonished at those words, Rexella. I jumped to my feet and shouted, ‘Thank You, Lord, for opening my eyes. You did answer my prayer. You have made me whole! But I almost missed the blessing!'”
Isn’t that a remarkable experience? Hearing our friend’s tremendous story stirred my heart and started me thinking. How many times do we risk missing out on God’s blessings because they may not arrive in the exact package we’re expecting? How should we act, what should we do while we’re waiting on the Lord to answer prayer?
I love the way The Living Bible instructs and encourages us with Psalm 27:14 – “Don’t be impatient. Wait for the Lord, and he will come and save you! Be brave, stouthearted and courageous. Yes, wait and he will help you.”
Are you waiting for God to answer the cry of your heart and meet some special need for you or a loved one? Here are some suggestions for you.
Wait in prayer.
First of all, I believe that when we’re waiting on the Lord, we should wait in prayer and allow ourselves to be comforted by the Holy Spirit. Too often we allow ourselves to be anxious and apprehensive after we’ve prayed and are waiting. By not allowing the comfort of the Holy Spirit to overwhelm us, we make ourselves vulnerable to the ravages of doubt and fear.
One of the first times I remember hearing “Wait, Rexella” was when I was just a little girl, maybe four years old. My mother had left me with my grandmother for the day. For a while I watched as she worked in the kitchen preparing to bake a pie.
When I grew restless, my grandmother said, “Rexella, as soon as I finish baking this pie, we’ll go down and get an ice cream banana split. But for now I want you to sit here on the counter and wait.”
A few minutes later I asked, “Are you almost done, Grandma?”
“No, honey, you have to wait.”
“Yes, but I want to go get my banana split now!”
“No, I’m not finished here. You must wait a little longer.”
In another moment or two, I was asking again, “Are you through yet?” So my grandmother decided to use the waiting time to teach me something new. Spreading some flour across the counter, she taught me how to form the letters and spell the word B-A-N-A-N-A. I was so delighted at my new accomplishment that I momentarily forgot my impatience.
I believe that God sometimes has lessons to teach us as we wait. There can be great value to be gained just by waiting, although it’s hard for people in today’s age of instant gratification to appreciate this truth.
We’ve all heard the old joke about doctors telling patients to “take an aspirin and call me in the morning.” Well, current medical research suggests that maybe these medics weren’t just ignoring their patient’s needs. The truth is that God has put a miraculous healing force within our bodies that, with just a little time, will begin to heal a high percentage of maladies.
It’s also true that time is a great healer in incidents of loss and grief. What seems unbearable and inconsolable today will become less painful and easier to bear as time goes by. As the Psalmist David expressed so beautifully, “Weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning” (Psalm 30:5).
Don’t misunderstand me – I’m not saying that we should pray about something, then just wait until we get over it naturally. We’ve all experienced those wondrous times when God came upon the scene and moved in our behalf almost instantly. In fact, there are times, God says, “Before they call, I will answer; and while they are yet speaking, I will hear” (Isaiah 65:24).
If we need an instant answer, God will not forsake us or fail. But there are times when we need to wait – not impatiently, but bravely, stoutheartedly, and with courage. In those times the Holy Spirit will come to us … and teach us … and help us. Don’t miss what God wants to do for you!
Wait in faith.
When you pray, wait in faith. Be confident in God. Believe in His love and goodness. Trust the Lord to keep His Word. Jesus said, “If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it” (John 14:14). Let your confidence be based on the knowledge that He will answer your prayer – God will take care of you.
Perhaps you’re saying, “But Rexella, sometimes that kind of faith is a little bit hard to come by.” I understand exactly what you mean.
I heard an illustration about a woman whose view from her kitchen window was blocked by an ugly old mountain that she often wished was gone. One day she read that if she had faith as big as a grain of mustard seed, she could pray for the mountain to be removed and it would go. So she decided to try it.
“Oh, God, if you love me, remove that mountain. I have faith that You can do this, so tonight I’m asking you to take it away.”
The next morning the woman got up, walked into her kitchen, and looked out the window. “There’s that mountain,” she said, “just as I expected!”
Do you expect God to answer when you pray? Do you have faith that He will hear and respond to your prayers according to His will? Has God answered your prayers in the past? Do you know others whose prayers have been answered? Yes, of course!
When you know who God is and what He is like, you can have faith in Him. I believe that real faith is not something you try to believe – it is something you cannot doubt! You must reach a place in your Christian experience where you discover the bedrock truths that require no convincing. And on that Rock you take your stand.
Getting to that place may require you to do some waiting – in prayer … and in faith. Be willing to do it! Don’t miss the blessing!
My third suggestion for learning to wait on the Lord is to be patient – not murmuring, not saying, “Why is this happening to me?”, not rebelling. For forty years the children of Israel wandered in the wilderness, missing out on the blessing of going into the Promised Land.
As a matter of necessity, the road out of Egypt’s slavery led through the desert. But the Israelites did not go through the desert patiently. They griped, complained, doubted, and rebelled! The more they murmured and rebelled, the longer they had to wait.
The land God had promised was out there, just an eleven-day march away (see Deuteronomy 1:2). It was wonderful country – almost literally “flowing with milk and honey.” But most of the Israelites died in the desert, wandering around and around in the wilderness until they missed out on the blessing. It was real! God had intended for them to have it! But their lack of prayer, lack of faith, and lack of patience ultimately destroyed them.
Forty years later, when the doubters and murmurers were dead, Joshua led the new generation – and a handful of faithful old-timers – into the land of Canaan.
Oh, my dear friend, there have been times in my life when I was tempted to focus on the problem and not on the solution God was going to give me. In those moments, I was becoming part of the problem! Have you had that experience?
Isn’t it wonderful that God is faithful? He keeps on reminding us to pray … to wait in faith … to be patient and not to give up or rebel. And as we wait, the Spirit of God comes to us, teaches us, helps us, and meets our need!
When it happens – when the darkness falls away and the power of God breaks through the limitations of our lives and sets us free – how we rejoice! We gratefully discover that – in the words of Solomon and David, “The Lord is our salvation, our refuge, and our strong tower!” (See 2 Samuel 22:3; Proverbs 18:10; Psalm 61:3).
“Thank You, God,” we exclaim. “We almost missed the blessing!”
CHANGED LIVES-one at a time
Dr. & Mrs. Van Impe,
Thank you for your weekly newsletter. Every Monday I look forward to your weekly newsletter via email to read. I print each and every one so that I can take them with me when I go for a walk I can stop and read it in the fresh air overlooking the Alps. Then when I am home I often look up the verses in my bible to build my knowledge of the word. I look forward to next Monday to see what I can learn more about in the word.
Thank you so very much.
Baden Wüttenburg, Germany
Shalom my name is mark from Ireland I just found your show this week and its a great show ;I just want to add I do not know how to spell Mrs. Van Impes name but she has the voice of an angel so gentle reminds me of the scripture of women holy women with gentle and quiet spirits: I havent came across many if any in my life but Mrs. Van Impes gentle voice is what I would compare to what love should be it made my heart say I wish I had someone in my life so gentle and kind; today there are not many holy women that stand out not here in Dublin that I have seen ; be blessed and may the Lord count you worthy of your calling and may you escape everything that is about to happen and stand before the Son of Man holy blameless and spotless; the Lord put that prayer on my heart the last year I pray it every day
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New Age deceptions about the faith are being proclaimed even from the pulpits of America’s churches! And these lies promoted as ‘Gospel’ are just one more sign of the great falling away predicted in Bible prophecy. They’re a sign that Jesus is coming soon! In this video, prophecy experts Drs. Jack and Rexella Van Impe expose the most shocking lies promoted in the name of Christianity today!
- How can Christians distinguish the real Christ from false christs?
- What does the Bible really say about sin? How is the New Age Movement, and some evangelical ministers, wrong about it?
- Whom did David Wilkerson predict would become ‘angels of light’ and ‘tools of deception’?
- What is ‘666’, and who is teaching members of his church to tattoo it on their bodies?
- Who are the foremost celebrities and ministers promoting the New Age Movement?
- And More!