Vultures

“Then if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Christ!’ or ‘There!’ do not believe it. For false christs and false prophets will rise and show great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect. See, I have told you beforehand.

“Therefore if they say to you, ‘Look, He is in the desert!’ do not go out; or ‘Look, He is in the inner rooms!’ do not believe it.

For as the lightning comes from the east and flashes to the west, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be. For wherever the carcass is, there the eagles will be gathered together.

“Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken. (Matthew 24:23-29)

When Jesus comes into his kingdom, it will be obvious, as obvious as a lightning flash. And no one will have to call us or whisper in our ears. Like vultures circling a carcass in a field are visible for miles, so it will be just as apparent when Jesus comes.
Jesus’ phrases about the sun and moon being darkened were taken from the words of the prophets in the Old Testament who had used them to describe the destruction of God’s enemies. When a city was attacked and burned, the rising smoke of its destruction obscured the sky, blackening sun and moon. Certainly those who saw Jerusalem burned by the Romans witnessed such changes in the sky.

Ever since the time of Christ, many false messiahs and false prophets have arisen to offer people earthly solutions to their earthly problems. For instance, between 132 and 136 AD, more than sixty years after the destruction of Jerusalem, a man named Bar Kokhba was proclaimed the Messiah and led a second Jewish revolt against the Roman Empire. Like the one that had caused the Temple’s destruction, this revolt too, was crushed. Sooner or later, every false prophet, every false messiah dies and comes to ruin.
We should never look to men for our salvation. We must never imagine that some individual has a closer relationship to God than us. We must not give in to the lie that some human being has solutions to all the problems in our personal lives, or all the problems in the world at large.

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About R.P. Nettelhorst

I'm married with three daughters. I live in southern California and I'm the interim pastor at Quartz Hill Community Church. I have written several books. I spent a couple of summers while I was in college working on a kibbutz in Israel. In 2004, I was a volunteer with the Ansari X-Prize at the winning launches of SpaceShipOne. Member of Society of Biblical Literature, American Academy of Religion, and The Authors Guild
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