It certainly takes supernatural wisdom to understand the truth about the future. This can only come from our loving God, as stated in James 1:5 and Amos 3:7. Claim now the powerful promise about God's revealing the future:
Surely the Sovereign Lord does nothing with. out revealing his plan to his servants the prophets. Amos 3:7
Gods Children Wont Be Deceived
We have already learned from our study of Bible prophecy that the children of God will be in heaven doing a judgment work during the thousand years after Christ comes the second time. God's children are promised
they will not be found among those who were deluded into worshipping the "beast," the creation of God's enemy. Nor will they have received its "mark."
I saw thrones on which were seated those who had been given authority to judge. And I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of their testimony for Jesus and because of the word of God. They had not worshiped the beast or his image and had not received his mark on their foreheads or their hands. Revelation 20:4
Another description of God's children (called saints in Scripture) is found in Revelation 14, just after the prophet John had referred to the mark of the beast:
This calls for patient endurance on the part of the saints who obey God's commandments and remain faithful to Jesus. Revelation 14:12
Gods Offspring Promised His Spirit
We've learned that we "obey" God's commands because we have agreed to allow them to be placed within our new-born hearts by His Spirit.
"I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws." Ezekiel 36:26, 27
Christ promised to do this for us. In another powerful promise He said He would never leave us to do it by ourselves:
Being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. Philippians 1:6
This good work of giving us His Spirit so that His commands are lived out in our lives, is promised not only to us individually, but to God's children as a group just before He comes. That time will be a traumatic one, but the prophet says that right to the end God's people will hold on to their faith.
Then the dragon was enraged at the woman and went off to make war against the rest of her offspring-those who obey God's commandments and hold to the testimony of Jesus. Revelation 12:17
This text refers to the devil angrily fighting the- last of God's children, who are identified as obedient to God's commands and holding to the "testimony of Jesus.'
Gods Children To Understand Prophecy
In the words spoken to the prophet John by a messenger from God, the messenger made it clear to John that only God should be worshipped. In saying this, he explained a gift called the "testimony of Jesus."
At this I fell at his feet to worship him. But he said to me, "Do not do it! I am a fellow servant with you and with your brothers who hold to the testimony of Jesus. Worship God! For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy." Revelation 19:10
The spirit of prophecy is one of the gifts promised us by His Spirit. God has blessed the human race all through the years with this gift, and He has promised we will continue to have the benefits of that gift right up to the end of time.
To review, then:
God's Holy Spirit has always been ready and willing to supply God's children (those who have accepted salvation's gift from Jesus) with whatever they need at any given time. Remember the promise He gave His followers at the beginning of the Christian Church when they were told to share the words of Jesus with the whole world:
Then Jesus came to them and said, "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I will be with you always, to the very end of the age. Matthew 28:18-20
Gods Spirit Breaks Language Barrier For Early Church
Jesus gave His followers power to communicate, to teach, to be understood. This was their great need at that time.
"But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth." Acts 1:8
God's followers needed to be able to tell people of all nations and languages about a loving God who became man, who lived and died and lives again, who has given man eternal life. This good news needed to be told and understood by each person in their own language. So the apostles were given the gifts of languages by the Holy Spirit at that time, along with the power to preach. Gods followers received it just when they needed it most.
When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them.
Now there were staying in Jerusalem God fearing Jews from every nation under heaven. When they heard this sound, a crowd came together in bewilderment, because each one heard them speaking in his own language. Utterly amazed, they asked: "Are not all these men who are speaking Galileans? Then how is it that each of us hears them in his own native language? Parthians, Medes and Elamites; residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya near Cyrene; visitors from Rome (both Jews and converts to Judaism); Cretans and Arabs-we hear them declaring the wonders of God in our own tongues!" Acts 2:1-11
God's gifts are always given freely. He promises to supply all our needs.
And my God will meet all your needs accord. ing to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:19
God knew the first apostles couldn't preach to everyone about His saving grace, His gift of life and love, unless the barrier of language was broken down. That is why the spirit of languages and communication was given. God, who knows everything, loves to share gifts with His children. He would like His people to have the benefit of every gift.
Gods Children Promised Many Gifts
There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit. There are different kinds of service, but the same ford. There are different kinds of working, but the same God works all of them in all men.
Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. To one there is given through the Spirit the message of wisdom, to another the message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, to another miraculous power, to another prophecy, to another the ability to distinguish between spirits, to another the ability to speak in different kinds of tongues, and to still another the interpretation of tongues. All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he gives them to each man, just as he determines.
And in the church God has appointed first of all apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then workers of miracles, also those having gifts of healing, those able to help others, those with gifts of administration, and those speaking in different kinds of tongues. 1 Corinthians 12:4-11, 28
For the "rest" or last of God's offspring, against whom the Devil would be especially angry, a special informative gift was needed along with the gift of God's Spirit writing His law in their hearts. It was an emphasis and a renewing of the gift of the spirit of prophecy (the testimony of Jesus), of knowing what God planned for the future, in even more detail. It would give His people understanding and hope.
Spirit Gives Prophetic Understanding For End Times
"At that time Michael, the great prince who protects your people, will arise. There will be a time of distress such as has not happened from the beginning of nations until then. But at that time your people everyone whose name is found written in the book will be delivered. Multitudes who sleep in the dust of the earth will awake: some to everlasting life, others to shame and everlasting contempt. Those who are wise will shine like the brightness of the heavens, and those who lead many to righteousness, like the stars for ever and ever. But you, Daniel, close up and seal the words of the scroll until the time of the end. Many will go here and there to in. crease knowledge." Daniel 12:1-4
As we've read the prophet John's book of the Revelation of Jesus, we have studied about Jesus' coming in the clouds of heaven. We read that every eye will see Him; that He will awaken the dead in that first resurrection and take all of God's children to heaven. John describes the thousand years spent in special judgment, and the Holy City of God descending with God's people to this earth.
He makes it clear Satan will spend those thousand years unable to tempt, bound by circumstances in chains of darkness. The wicked will be resurrected from their death sleep, and organized to attack God's city and people. He spells out that the moment of attack will never come, because of fire descending from heaven to consume, eternally, all that is evil. God wanted His followers, especially the last of His offspring, to grasp all this, since they would have to experience the final struggle on this earth before Christ's second coming.
God has given an understanding of all these prophecies, and He has continued to have messengers or prophets from Bible times until now. He promises we will not miss out on any gifts:
Therefore you do not lack any spiritual gift as you eagerly wait for our Lord Jesus Christ to be revealed.
1 Corinthians 1:7
The Bible describes prophets and what they do. The Bible tells us:
He said, "Listen to my words: "When a prophet of the Lord is among you, I reveal myself to him in visions, I speak to him in dreams." Numbers 12:6
God wants us to listen to prophecy. There is a dynamic promise, with some cautions, for people expecting the coming of Jesus.
Do not put out the Spirit's fire; do not treat prophecies with contempt. Test everything. Hold on to the good. Avoid every kind of evil.
May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. The one who calls you is faithful and he will do it.
1 Thessalonians 5:19-24
The Truth: God Promises Certainty
God promises the gift of prophecy for His people, His church, through His Spirit, if they will not "put out" His gift but rather check everything out. He encourages us to test all things and hold fast what is good.
The way to test whether a prophet or messenger's words are true is to determine if they are guided by the Holy Spirit and are thus in agreement with His holy Word and law. Reread the promised key so you won't be deceived:
To the law and to the testimony! If they do not speak according to this word, they have no light of dawn. (KJV: no light in them). Isaiah 8:20
Another test that reveals whether a person is God's messenger is to evaluate the kind of life they live.
"Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven."...
"Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves. By their fruit you will rec. ognize them."...
Matthew 5:15, 16; 7:15, 16
God's people who are living at the time prior to the second coming of Christ will be just as aware of the power of God in prophecy as the people of God have been all through history.
The Seventh-day Adventist Church believes this gift has been specifically expressed to give clearer understanding of the overall controversy between Christ and Satan.
God has placed considerable emphasis on prophecy (understanding the future) so that those who choose to accept Christ's gift of eternal life would be clear about the attack against God's loving authority at the beginning and about His just plan of defense for our sakes. God
wants His people to understand that He is in control and has allowed us to see the full results of the authority or systems of worship that His enemy would establish in contrast to His out workings of love. God wants His people to trust Him intelligently, to choose His authority now, and accept His sealing of their choice.
God has promised that His people would have all His gifts among them (including prophecy) in the last days before His return.
Everyone, men and women alike, receive the gift of eternal life, if they choose to accept it. Throughout Biblical history, men and women alike; were given the special gift of prophecy as the need arose. In the 19th century, at a crucial time in prophetic history, God gave that gift once more. The Biblical promise had said God's people could expect all the spiritual gifts before His return, and God keeps His word!
... because our testimony about Christ was confirmed in you.
Therefore you do not lack any spiritual gift as you eagerly wait for our Lord Jesus Christ to be revealed. He will keep you strong to the end, so that you will be blameless on the day of our Lord Jesus Christ.
1 Corinthians 1:6-8
God Keeps Giving
Nothing other than Christ's sacrifice could save us, but God keeps giving us even more gifts because of His love. He wants us to know about the future and not be afraid of the unknown.
"But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come. He will bring glory to me by taking from what is mine and making it known to you. All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will take from what is mine and make it known to you.
In the last days of earth's history God wants His followers to hold on to their faith and trust in Jesus. And He wanted to reveal the future to us through His servants, the prophets via His Spirit. Why? Because He counts us as His "offspring," part of the family of God!
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