Prophecy, Teaching

THE FIG TREE – Stephen Hanson

(A teaching & prophecy)
32 Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh:33 So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors.34 Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled. Matt. 24
A person would almost have to be blind to not consider that we are now living in the last days. While many have conjectured and some have scorned this idea, there are many signs that point to the days that we are now living in. 2 Timothy 3 is one good place to start.
3 This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. 2 For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, 3 without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, 4 traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; 5 having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.
1. In the last days men would be lovers of themselves.
(It seems that many people are more concerned about how they look on the outside, rather than those things that would constitute a good character, perhaps more than at any time in history. We see this with the rise of people taking “selfies” and being consumed with their appearance. )
2. In the last days people will be covetous
(The majority of people seem to seek after material wealth and riches. This is the way of the world with all of its temptations and the promise of more and more.)
3. In the last days people will be boasters and proud.
(The allure of worldly pride and the exaltation of self seems to be at an all-time high. We know that Lucifer fell because of his great pride. )
4. In the last days children will be disobedient to their parents.
(If one were to go back 40-50 years ago, it would be plain to see that most children had a respect for their parents and adults. Now, this has diminished to such an extent, that it is growing at an alarming rate.)
5. In the last days people will be unthankful
(Many don’t know how to be content with what they have. Being thankful is an important attribute for anyone.)
6. In the last days people will be without natural affection.
(We see this with the rise of how unnatural sexual relationships have risen more and more. Much of this has become so blatant that it is now becoming a common place.)
7. In the last days people will be despisers of those which is good.
(That which used to be thought of as good and wholesome now is being twisted, where sometimes black is white, and white is black. Many times people make up their own rules for what is good in their own eyes.)
8. In the last days people will be lovers of pleasure than of God.
(Whatever makes one feel good is now becoming the standard for ultimate happiness.)
9. In the last days people will have a “form” of Godliness only.
(This one is probably the most insidious and subtle of all the other ones listed above. One may well pretend to show all the signs of being a believer, and yet on the inside they are full of all kinds of malice and hatred. And also, these types of people deny the power and workings of the Holy Spirit in their lives.)
The Lord says:
“I tell you that you are now living in the last generation. For ever since the years have unfolded to the time that you are now living in, those things mentioned in my word are now beginning to take place. What are the signs that many would seek? What are the reasons that one would wonder why this unfolding if my time frame is not the one that you are living in now? For many would question these things and yet it should be plain to all that indeed, these are the days that the prophets of old had spoken about.
But what will you do about it? What will you attempt to do to save yourself? Will life go on as it always has? Will you find the resources to hoard and to keep hidden, so that you will be protected from the onslaught that is coming? Your soul will be required of you on that day. Plan your life wisely that you will be ready. “

Signs in nature:

“…and there will be great earthquakes, and in various places plagues and famines; and there will be terrors and great signs from heaven.” (Luke 21:11)
This category of signs has always been one of the least accepted signs that we are living in the last days. This is because people always say that we have always had earthquakes, tornadoes, hurricanes, and other natural disasters. But those who have said things like this don’t realize that Jesus said the signs would be like “birth pangs” (Matt. 24:8.) That means they will increase in frequency and intensity the closer we get to the Lord’s return.
And that is exactly what has been happening. For example, between October of 1991 and November of 2004 — a period of 13 years — the United States experienced:
  • 9 of the 10 largest insurance natural disasters in history.
  • 9 of the 10 greatest disasters as ranked by FEMA relief costs.
  • 5 of its costliest hurricanes in history.
  • 3 of its 4 largest tornado swarms in history.
  • And understand now that these figures were put together before Hurricane Katrina, and now Harvey, Irma, and Maria. Now even more recently, we see the horrendous eruption of the Kilauea volcano in Hawaii and the devastation that it is leaving upon many of its residence.

    The Spiritual Signs

    There are perhaps more signs found in this category than any of the other ones that would illustrate the point I am making. Many are evil in nature, but there are also some very positive ones. The negative signs can be found in 2 Timothy 4:3-4:
    3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; 4 and they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.
    Some of the negative spiritual signs that are specifically prophesied include the following: false christs, cultic groups, heresies, apostasy, skepticism, deception, occultism, and persecution.
    The words of Jesus are seen most frequently in Matt. 24:5, 11.
    The fulfillment of these prophecies is seen in an explosion of cults since 1850, which has been rising ever steadily.
    But on the positive, we know of Joel’s prophecy concerning the outpouring of the Holy Spirit upon those who believe.
    28 “It will come about after this That I will pour out My Spirit on all mankind; And your sons and daughters will prophesy, Your old men will dream dreams, Your young men will see visions. 29 “Even on the male and female servants I will pour out My Spirit … Joel 2
    At the dawn of the 20th century most Protestants and Catholics thought that the Holy Spirit had ceased, and the gifts had finished at the time of the apostles. However, we soon found out later on, as a young black preacher in Los Angeles in 1906, saw great power fall on the Azuza Street Revival, which lasted for four years. This spear-headed and helped bring about the Pentecostal Revival. There are other examples such as the revival that spread from Wales in the early 20th century and others, and yet even now with the rise and outpouring of the Holy Spirit, we see both good and bad evidences of how some have fallen prey to strange and unusual teachings and manifestations.

    Signs Seen with Technology

    “Men will faint from fear over the expectation of the things which are coming upon the world; for the powers of the heavens will be shaken.” (Luke 21:26)
    But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words and seal the book, even to the time of the end. Many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased.” Daniel 12:4
    Man’s capabilities have seen the rise of technology manifested in a multitude of ways. One of these of course, has been the development and proliferation of nuclear warfare. Luke 21 that speaks of people “fainting from fear” due to the “powers of the heavens being shaken.
    Also, how could the Antichrist figure control all buying and selling worldwide (Revelation 13) without the aid of some type of advanced technology? And how could the False Prophet create the illusion of giving life to a statue (Revelation 13) without the technology of holograms, virtual reality, and robotics?

    Signs of World Politics and Wars

    “You will be hearing of wars and rumors of wars… for nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom…” (Matthew 24:6-7)
    The bible prophesies a very specific end time arrangement of world politics. israel is pictured as being re-established (ezekiel 37:21-22) and surrounded by its hostile neighbors, the arabs. these groups are bent on the destruction of israel. (ezekiel 35:1 – 36:7). this has been the situation in the middle east ever since the israeli declaration of independence in may of 1948.
    To be sure, there have always been wars ever since the history of man upon this planet. But the magnitude of the warfare that has happened in the 20th century and now, has seen unparalleled war like never before. The birth pangs have increased with intensity so much so that all the wars that occurred in the 20th century are greater than all the previous wars in recorded history combined.
    10 Of which salvation the prophets have enquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you: 11 searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow. 12 Unto whom it was revealed, that not unto themselves, but unto us they did minister the things, which are now reported unto you by them that have preached the gospel unto you with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven; which things the angels desire to look into. 1 Peter 1
    Stephen Hanson


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