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Signs of the Times

There is a large body of prophetic information in the Bible, which refers to major events that will occur in the world before and during the Second Coming of Jesus Christ. These signs of the times help us understand the unfolding of God’s divine plan for humanity, so we can be better prepared for future events. The Lord expects of us to heed these signs as their message is just as obvious as the signs of nature (Luke 12:54-56). The Israelis know that when clouds gather from the Mediterranean Sea in the west, rain is coming. When a strong southerly wind blows across the plains of the hot Negev desert, they know that it will be a very hot day. Those who fail to interpret the signs of the times are branded as hypocrites – spiritually blinded people who are ignorant of what the Lord is communicating to them through the very obvious fulfilment of biblical prophecies.

There will nevertheless be a surprise element in the rapture as most of the signs will only have their final fulfilment during the seven years of tribulation between the rapture and the Second Coming of Christ. However, these signs will become more and more obvious as we approach the time of the rapture, which is the secret coming of the heavenly Bridegroom to take away all true believers from the world (Luke 21:36; John 14:2-3; 1 Thess. 4:16-17). We should be able to discern the early beginnings of these signs as an indication that the time of our departure is at hand (Luke 21:28). The following are the most important signs of the end-time:

1. The restoration of Israel

The Lord promised that, in the latter days, He would gather the children of Israel from among the nations, wherever they have gone (Hos. 3:5; Jer. 23:8; 31:8-11; Ezek. 36:22-25; 37:21). A very important aspect of their restoration is the status of the city of Jerusalem. According to Luke 21:24, Jerusalem would be trodden down by the Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled. The physical recapturing of biblical Jerusalem (the Old City) occurred in 1967 during the Six Day War, which was a prelude to its political restoration as Israel’s eternal and indivisible capital city in August 1980. The latter event inaugurated the terminal generation of the present dispensation (Luke 21:32). According to the Bible, there will be a great end-time struggle for the control of Jerusalem (Zech. 12:2-3; 14:2) because Jesus Christ will return to this city at His Second Coming (Zech. 14:4-5). His enemies will await Him here, but the ensuing battle will lead to their utter destruction (Zech. 14:12-13). Events in Israel are very important signs of the times.

2. The Russo-Arab invasion of Israel

In Ezekiel 38 and 39, a Russo-Arab invasion of Israel is described. The ruler of Russia is called Gog and his country Magog. This is an ancient name for modern Russia, as it refers to the large area to the north of the Caucasian Mountains and the Black Sea. The major allies of Russia are identified as Persia (present Iran), Ethiopia, Libya, Gomer (probably referring to Germany) and Togarmah (present Turkey). It is clearly indicated that they will invade Israel in the latter days (Ezek. 38:3-8,16). In Ezekiel 39, the destruction of Gog and his hordes is described.

3. The restoration of Babylon

Revelation 18 refers to a metropolis with the name of Babylon. It is the same city as the one that existed in ancient times, but in the end-time it will be restored to its former glory. As the birthplace of the Ancient World’s pagan religions, this city must again emerge as the seat of a false universal religion. Babylon is situated on the banks of the Euphrates River in Iraq. It is no coincidence that two of the last six chapters of the Bible are devoted to Babylon. In Revelation 17, mystery Babylon is described and identified as the mother of harlots. This is an indication that all the false religions that originated from Babylon will be organised into a single ecumenical body in the end-time (Rev. 17:1-6). Their final abode will be the restored city of Babylon. The revived commercial city of Babylon is described in Revelation 18. Babylon will have to be restored before its final destruction during the great tribulation (Isa. 13:19-22; Jer. 51:61-64; Rev. 18:1-2,8-10,17-21).

4. The Revived Roman Empire

The ancient Roman Empire also has to re-emerge in the end-time as a power-base for the Antichrist. In the image of Daniel (Dan. 2:31-45), the Roman Empire is represented by the legs and ten toes. In the night visions of Daniel, the vicious beast with ten horns on its head also depicts the Roman Empire, from which the Antichrist will arise (Dan. 7:7-8,19-26). The symbolism of the beast with the ten horns is also found in Revelation 13:1-2, which describes the Antichrist. From these prophecies it is evident that the Roman Empire will again dominate the world. It will comprise countries from Western Europe, Eastern Europe, The Middle East and North Africa. The European Union is rapidly expanding and will constitute the revived Roman Empire.

5. The New World Order

The Antichrist will be the head of a new world order, which includes all nations. He will establish a world empire based on political, religious and economic power bases (Rev. 13:2,4,7,16-18). The present new world order, aimed at globalisation, paves the way for this future dispensation.

6. Religious deception

In the last days, heretical teachings promoted by demons, will have disastrous consequences in many Christian churches (1 Tim. 4:1). False teachings will proliferate everywhere (2 Tim. 4:3-4; 2 Pet. 2:1-2; Matt. 7:21-23; 24:4-5,11,24; 2 Cor. 11:2-4; Gal. 1:6-9; 1 John 4:1).

7. Moral decline

Serious moral decline will occur in the end-time (2 Tim. 3:1-5). Many Christians will also be detrimentally influenced by this rising tide of immorality (Matt. 24:12). It will be like the times of Noah and Lot, as wickedness, violence and homosexualism will be rife (Matt. 24:37).

8. Natural disasters

In the end-time there will be a great increase in natural disasters such as earthquakes, droughts, pollution of the air and fresh water resources, heat-waves, unprecedented hailstorms, and burning fragments of heavenly bodies that will fall on the earth and in the sea, causing huge waves (Matt. 24:7; Rev. 6:12-13; 8:8-12; 11:6; 16:4,8,18-21). The tsunami in Southeast Asia on 26th December 2004 was one of the worst natural disasters in recorded history. It was caused by a massive earthquake on the seabed. Natural disasters will greatly increase in the coming tribulation period and cause severe panic and a big loss of lives (Luke 21:25-26).

9. Famines and pestilences

Famines and pestilences will be common (Matt. 24:7), causing many deaths in the great tribulation. Food will become very scarce and expensive. Pestilences refer to disease epidemics that will increase and spread beyond control. HIV/Aids could be one of them.

10. Wars

The tribulation period will be a time of unprecedented wars, leading up to the great battle of Armageddon (Matt. 24:6-7; Rev. 6:4,8; 16:13-14,16; 19:19-21; Zech. 14:2-3,12-13). A big military invasion from the East, probably by China and its allies, is also described (Rev. 9:13-19).

11. World evangelism

One sign of the end-times which has a positive nature is that of world evangelism. Before the end comes, the gospel must be preached to all nations (Matt. 24:14). All Christians should dedicate themselves to achieving this objective (Luke 14:23).

The wrath of God

The signs of the times graphically illustrate the fact that the God of love, who wants to save all people (1 Tim. 2:3-4), is also the God of wrath who will severely judge unrepentant sinners (Heb. 2:3; 1 Thess. 1:10). We should not emphasise only certain attributes of God at the cost of others, as we may end up with “another Jesus” who is an invention of the human mind (2 Cor. 11:4), and consequently not true to Scripture. God is not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance (2 Pet. 3:9). But unrepentant sinners will be judged.

During the coming tribulation, when the wrath of God will be poured out upon the world, most of the hardened sinners will become more wicked, to the extent of even cursing God because of all the plagues (Rev. 9:20-21). For that reason, they leave a loving God no choice but to judge them. Our command is to heed the signs of the times by facing the fact that the greatest part of the world population will become more evil, selfish, immoral, untrustworthy, violent and God-rejecting in the end-time. We must, at all times, refrain from joining the licentious crowds of the end-time (Rom. 13:12-14). The world is heading for its darkest hour, and also a great tribulation which will be unprecedented in human history (Matt. 24:21-22). But as in the times of Noah and Lot, the principle remains that God’s wrath is never poured out upon true believers (Luke. 21:36).

Personal commitment

The signs of the times are motivating me to be ready for the coming of the heavenly Bridegroom. By His grace, I will escape the divine judgements upon a sinful world just as sure as Noah and Lot escaped the judgements upon the wicked people of their time. I embrace this promise, and therefore do not have an Antichrist expectation but a Christ expectation. After the true church of Christ (the wise virgins) has departed the Antichrist will be revealed without any resistance, deceive the masses and institute his reign of terror on earth. I realise that in a time such as this I must, more than ever before, guard against spiritual backsliding and moral sins (Matt. 24:12) as the power of delusion is very strong. Satan’s spirit of deceit is intent on inducing Christians to forsake their faith (1 Tim. 4:1). Through the signs of the times, Christ admonishes us to remain true to Him, to be ready for His sudden coming, and to use the remaining time in the best possible way by warning others against the impending judgements of God.


1.    What is the significance of Israel as a sign of the end-time?

2.    Who are the enemies that will invade Israel according to Ezekiel 38?

3.    In what regard does the European Union play a role in the fulfilment of biblical prophecies?

4.    What is the new world order and what are its three power bases?

5.    Describe the moral and spiritual standards that will prevail in the last days.

Prof. Johan Malan

Pleasure and Profit in Bible Study

Pleasure and Profit in Bible Study

by Dwight Lyman Moody

We cannot overestimate the importance of a thorough familiarity with the Bible. I try to lose no opportunity of urging people by every means in my power to the constant study of this wonderful Book. If through the pages that follow, I can reach still others and rouse them to read their Bibles, not at random but with a plan and purpose, I shall be indeed thankful.

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Group or Individual Bible Study Guides
Studies available in English & Afrikaans.

An Old Testament Type of Jesus

Joshua played an important role in Israel after they had been delivered from Egypt, thereby preparing him for his future role as leader when they crossed the Jordan to take possession of the Promised Land. His conquests in Canaan rendered proof that he was a special instrument in the hand of the Lord. Joshua was an Old Testament type of Jesus, who was sent by the Father to accomplish a much greater purpose, i.e. to deliver people all over the world from the bondage of sin.

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’n Ou-Testamentiese Tipe van Jesus

Josua het ’n belangrike rol in Israel se geskiedenis gespeel nadat hulle uit Egipte bevry is, en dit het hom voorberei om as leier op te tree toe hulle deur die Jordaan getrek het om die Beloofde Land in besit te neem. Sy oorwinningstogte in Kanaän het van hom ’n beson­dere instrument in die hand van die Here gemaak. Josua was ’n Ou-Testamentiese tipe van Jesus wat deur die Vader gestuur is vir ’n veel groter doel, naamlik om mense oral in die wêreld uit die slawerny van sonde te bevry.

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Die Bybel in Geheel

Die Bybel in Geheel

Hierdie is 'n kort oorsig om vir jou 'n duideliker prentjie te skets voordat jy in diepte met Bybelstudie begin. Hierdie Bybel in Geheel studie, is 'n studie van die hele Bybel. Dit neem jou deur elke boek van die Bybel om vir jou 'n kort oorsig te gee oor elke boek, deur wie dit geskryf was en waarom dit geskryf was en lig ook dan belangrike dele uit en som die boek in kort op. Met hierdie notas saam sal verdere studies van die Bybel baie meer vir jou sin maak en help om sekere konsepte beter te verstaan.
Die Bybel in Geheel

Kort Oorsig

Die waarde van die Bybel / Om die Bybel te verstaan / Bybelse Uitdrukkings.

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Die Bybel in Geheel - DEEL 1

Die Ou Testament

Die Ou Testament kan in 3 Dele opgedeel word: Deel 1 – Geskiedenis – Genesis tot Ester Deel 2 – Wysheid & Digkuns – Job tot Hooglied Deel 3 – Profesieë – Jesaja tot Maleagi

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Die Bybel in Geheel - DEEL 2

Die Nuwe Testament

Die Evangelies is seker die mees bekendste deel van die Bybel. Baie mense ken dele van die Evangelies maar min mense verstaan die omvang en doel van hierdie vier boeke.

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Studies Concerning the subject of Holiness

Holiness is a characteristic that is often talked about but hardly understood as to how it can be obtained. Too often holiness is considered an attribute of God that is not attainable to man. Holiness is considered something impossible.
1. Personal Holiness

2. The Holiness of God

3. Putting Sin to Death, Pursuing Holiness

4. Trained in Godliness

5. True Humility

6. Contentment

7. Self-Control

Open Studies

13 Studies in Christelike Heiligheid

13 Studies in Christelike Heiligheid

Hierdie 13 Wesleyaanse lesings oor heiligmaking is opgestel om weekliks oor ‘n tydperk van drie maande aangebied te word.

Sien Studies

Eerste Beginsels van die Christelike Lewe

Bybelstudie Reeks

Hierdie kursus is uitgewerk vir enigeen wat die Here Jesus aangeneem het as sy persoonlike Saligmaker. Dit is ook vir diè wat andere wil help om te groei in die geestelike lewe. Die doel van die leerplan is om u gebalanseerd te maak in die Christelike lewe. Dit beklemtoon dat u geestelike ondervinding prakties moet uitwerk in u daaglikse lewe.

Hierdie studies is ideaal vir sondagskool of ander groep studies.

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'n Studie oor Heiligmaking

Die leer oor heiligmaking as 'n tweede genadewerk ná bekering help alle Christene om tot geestelike volwassenheid op te groei.

Hier is 12 studies wat in diepte kyk na hierdie onderwerp. Die studies is ook as klank studies beskikbaar.
1. Die Behoefte aan Heiligmaking
2. Die Stryd Teen Vleeslikheid
3. Die Eise van Dissipelskap
4. Oorwinning Oor die Vlees: Die Stap van Heiligmaking
5. Oorwinning Oor Swakhede: Die Proses van Heiligmaking
6. Vervulling met die Heilige Gees
7. Volkome Heiligmaking
8. Die Wil van God
9. Gawes en Vrug van die Gees
10. Bedieninge van die Heilige Gees
11. Die pelgrimsreis van God se Volk
12. Heiligmaking en die Wederkoms

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Discipling New Believers
English & Afrikaans FREE printable studies.

8 Week study program

This can be used as a weekly study for new believers. These studies will help with assurance of salvation and will grow their Bible knowledge. These are the very basics of the Christian faith and will ensure a firm foundation. Give this to a young believer and go through all the answers with the person each week. Make sure they memorized the scriptures each week. Use the study's questions to lead conversations on subjects that the person do not yet understand.

All 8 studies in one
Study 1 ot 8

8 Weke studie program

Gebruik die kort studies om weekliks deur te gaan met 'n nuwe Christen. Dit sal hulle sekerheid gee en hulle Bybel kennis verbreed sodat hulle op 'n vaste fondasie kan bou. Gee dit weekliks vir die persoon en gaan dit dan saam met hulle deur elke week nadat hulle dit ingevul het. Toets hul teks memorisering Gebruik die vrae in die studies as leiding tot nodige gesprekke daar waar die persoon dalk dinge nie verstaan nie.

Al 8 studies in een
Studie 1 ot 8
Precept Ministries International

Precept Ministries International


The ministry’s goal is to equip and encourage people to live as exemplary followers of Jesus Christ, studying the Bible inductively, viewing the world Biblically, making disciples intentionally and serving the church faithfully in the power of the Holy Spirit.

Through workshops, conferences and Bible classes the ministry provides training in Inductive Bible Study skills, which includes leading dynamic small group discussions. Inductive Bible study materials are available in nearly 70 languages. Hundreds of thousands of men, women, teens and children in close to 150 countries discover Truth for themselves using the Inductive Bible Study Method through the work of Precept Ministries.

Precept Ministries - Lightning Studies

FREE downloadable Lightning Study topics offer a “print friendly” option for you to have a practical example of how Inductive Bible Study works during your personal devotion times or even with your small group.

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Read and download these free booklets

Also great for group or personal Bible study.
Biblical Decision Making
Is it God’s will to “find” His will?
Exactly how should you go about making good, God-honoring decisions?

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The Companionship Principle
Bringing Biblical Sanity to the Insanity of Dating
The real reason dating is often "insane" is Christian young people and parents have never consciously shaped their understanding of "dating" with the Bible.

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Dinge van Belang
Dinge van Belang vir jong Christene
Hulp en raad aan jong Christene. Die boekie is vol waardevolle wenke en waarskuwings om jou te help op jou pad saam met die Here.

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Identifying False Teachers
A Biblical Checklist for Identifying False Teachers in the Church
The purpose of this booklet is simple: to give you a checklist so that you can identify and avoid Christian leaders whom God would call false.

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Testing Today's Prophecy
Does today's "prophecy" measure up to biblical standards?
Should Christians accept the modern prophecy movement as a new work of God’s Spirit?

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Articles on Bible Reading & Study

"Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path."  - Psalm 119:105

The Prophetic Books of the Old Testament have been fitted into the narrative at the place where they are thought to have been written. The Epistles have been inserted into the Book of Acts in a like manner.
Praktiese wenke vir jong Christene.
Practical tips for young Christians.
by Rev. R. A. Torrey
Questions to ask when reading the Bible.
Vrae om te vra wanneer jy die Bybel lees.