What signs of nature point to the soon return of Jesus Christ? Find out with hosts Tim Moore and Nathan Jones on the television program, Christ in Prophecy!
Air Date: February 18, 2023
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Tim Moore: Welcome to Christ in Prophecy. Nathan and I are glad you’ve joined us today and pray that this episode will be a particular blessing to you.
Nathan Jones: Have you ever heard someone say, “May you live in interesting times?” Well, that backhanded blessing is said to be a traditional Chinese curse because interesting times bring great upheaval and uncertainty.
Tim Moore: While the source of that expression is in doubt. There is no doubt that we live in interesting times. Modern conveniences from automobiles to electricity, the jet travel to television have revolutionized the human experience in ways we take for granted. Modern medicine alone has extended the human lifespan by decades from what was typical just a few generations ago.
Nathan Jones: And yet, not all the changes have been positive. We have moral and spiritual challenges and failings that our forebears could not imagine. They explosion of pornography, callous treatment of human life, both the unborn and the age, and an endorsement of mind altering illicit drugs are just some of the trends that would shock our ancestors. And what in the world would they think over the confusion over gender that has infected our society?
Tim Moore: Obviously, well, we could talk for weeks about the alarming indicators that something is terribly amiss in the world today. When I first came to Lamb & Lion Ministries over eight years ago, Dr. David Reagan charged me with delivering one primary message. While our mission is to proclaim the soon return of Jesus Christ, I was told to emphasize the signs of the times. That is because the explosion of prophetic signs all around us proves that we are living in the season of the Lord’s return. The imminence of the Rapture and the urgency of embracing Jesus Christ as Savior and honoring Him as Lord cannot be overstated. In the months to come, we are going to bring you six different episodes that highlight the six categories of signs Dr. Reagan identified years ago: signs of nature, signs of society, Spiritual signs, signs of technology, signs of world politics, and signs of Israel.
Nathan Jones: So today, we’re going to point to the sign of nature. It’s that category of signs that Paul said is obvious, even to the spiritually blind. Matter of fact, in Romans 1:20, he wrote, “For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal Power and Godhead, so that man is without excuse.”
Tim Moore: Exactly, so. You know, Nathan, I think about that verse and what Jesus had to say even to some of His scoffers in Matthew 16, because the signs of nature, which is really what we’re focusing on today, are obvious. I mean, you don’t have to have spiritual discernment to see that the wind is blowing and that the storms are increasing, that all of these natural signs are increasing. But Jesus had a particular word of admonition to those who can interpret certain signs of nature but could not interpret the signs of the times. That’s what he said in Matthew chapter 16, “He said, ‘When it is evening, you say it will be fair weather for the sky is red. And in the morning there will be a storm today for the sky is red and threatening. Do you know how to discern the appearance of the sky?'” In other words, these natural signs, but you cannot discern the signs of the time. So I think the first category is the most obvious. It’s the signs that are apparent all around us. What are some of those kinds of sign?
Nathan Jones: Well, we can go to Matthew 24 and Luke 21 and read the three questions that the apostles asked Jesus. They had gone to the temple and, you know, a bunch of fishermen and country bumpkin, so to speak. They were awed by the big city temple it was so amazing. And then Jesus just quieted them down by saying, you know, this temple will be destroyed and that’s it. And they’re like, what? How could this possibly be?
Tim Moore: Right.
Nathan Jones: So they went up to Him and they asked Him three questions: When will basically the temple fall? What will be the signs of the end of the age? And number three, the signs leading up to your return.
Tim Moore: And He did not respond, oh, you got it all wrong, guys. No, He responded to them that they should not be deceived. But then he categorized a number of signs in the following verses, especially Matthew 24.
Nathan Jones: Oh, yeah. You go to Matthew 24 and you learn that there were ten particular signs that Jesus labeled. Of course, false messiahs, and He labels that three times. There would be earthquakes, famines, pestilence, there’d be wars and rumors of wars. There would also be signs in the sky. There’d be the category of social upheaval, both social and economic. There would also be persecution of Christians. There would be the besiegement of Jerusalem. And then all these natural signs that would lead up to His actual return. Great signs in the sky, supposedly the day of Christ when He returns is a day like any other. There’ll be so many weird natural disasters. And it says how men’s hearts will fail them at that time.
Tim Moore: Certainly will. And the other thing that He says within that passage, especially in Matthew 24, I can cite from verse eight, He says, “All of these things are merely the beginning of birth pangs.” And we’ve talked a long time about the fact that birth pangs start slowly and with less intensity than they come on later. And as every mother knows, birth pangs increase in intensity and in frequency until the very moment of a baby’s arrival. We believe absolutely that these various signs will increase in frequency and intensity till the moment the Lord comes. So I’ve thought about what are just the signs of nature? Since we’ve got five other categories that encompass some of these that Jesus has talked about. I’ve thought about weather being the signs that are evident in the very air around us, the wind, the rain, lightning, hail. Yes, also drought when it comes to lack of rain leading to famine. We could talk about earthquakes, the rumbling of the earth beneath our feet. Fire to a degree. Also pestilence and boy, have we seen an outbreak of that, not only—
Nathan Jones: That’s also plagues.
Tim Moore: Exactly. Plagues, insects that destroy crops, and that’s still a threat in many regions of the world. And increasing today viruses, boy, we’ve seen that. And of course, signs in the very heavens, stars and asteroids and all the things that are above the earth. So let’s drill into some of these signs as we see them increasing in intensity and in frequency.
Nathan Jones: Well, it’s interesting, too, because most people don’t even believe in God will call it an act of nature or, you know, insurance won’t cover if it’s an act of God. Well, that pretty much explains what these, anything that mankind can’t control so to speak. And this is where mankind really kind of falls because they don’t look back and understand why is nature all in a tizzy? Why is nature all in disarray? And go back all the way to Genesis 1 and you see that everything was good that was created. That means the weather was good. Nature was good and in harmony. But man sinned, and so God cursed the land and it threw everything out of kilter. So a lot of times when we see acts of nature or acts of God as we call them, it’s because our natural system is out of whack. When hurricanes blow through and destroy whole towns or flooding all over or droughts or famines that are caused by natural disasters like droughts, you end up having to say, well, is that an act of God or is that an act of nature? Well, the Bible says it’s both because nature is out of kilter because of God’s curse, but it’s also because God will oftentimes use acts of nature as remedial judgments.
Tim Moore: He certainly will. I think of Elijah, who predicted a drought. And the Lord said, if you say there will be a drought, the drought will last until you say that it will stop because the prophet had been revealed by God that there was going to be a judgment coming upon the land. And the purpose of the drought in that day was to drive people back to God as their sustenance, and as their sustainer, instead of turning to the false God of Baal or the Molech or the Asherahs. And so sometimes God does use even the signs of nature, natural calamities, to call people to repentance, to bring them back to Himself.
Nathan Jones: Oh yeah, look at the book of Joel, for instance.
Tim Moore: Yes.
Nathan Jones: In Joel the people had grown really apathetic about their relationship with the Lord, so He sends a locust plague to eat everything. And of course, being an agrarian society, that’s a death sentence. And Joel had to tell the people, hey, God did this to you because He wants you to come back. And what’s beautiful is the people did come back and repented and the Lord made their land bountiful again. So that’s what the Lord often uses as remedial judgments, not for the purpose of punishing per se, but to bring people back, get down on their knees and repent and go back to that right relationship with the Lord.
Tim Moore: Well we think of ourselves as parents. And we are not holy and perfect like God, our Father, but we have a desire for our children to be corrected, to be admonished to right behavior, to right attitude, to growing up, to not only fear the Lord, but be admonished to serve Him. But we want our children to behave as good citizens. And so even as we punish our children, it’s not just for wrath. It is for guiding them to corrective aspects. There are people today who say, well, my God wouldn’t do this or wouldn’t do that. He wouldn’t hurt a fly, as we’ve heard the expression. And yet that does not comport with what Scripture describes as the character and nature of God.
Nathan Jones: Not at all. Not at all. And you have to look at what God is doing with extreme nature. For instance, when Hurricane Katrina happened, Bill Koenig, who’s been on our show many times, pointed out that as we treated Israel so God was trying to make a wake up call. And that was at the time where we were pulling everybody kind of pushed Israel to pull out of Gaza and bring all this Jewish settlers out. But there’s how do you determine then, the difference between a natural disaster and a judgment of God? And I think there’s three things you can find from the Bible. One is the timing of the event. How does it relate? It was easy to see that Katrina matched up perfectly for what we were doing to break up the land of Israel. Two the magnitude of event. For instance, Katrina just kind of came out of nowhere and just hit the country so hard. It was like out of the blue. Naturally it’s like, well, how can a storm form that fast? And three, there’s usually a prophet or prophetic voices declaring, before it happens. The Lord will do this for instance. Like, for instance, when the temple was being neglected, the exiles had returned and they were supposed to be building the temple, but instead they went and built their own homes. So the Lord blighted their land. Nothing would grow really well. And Haggai was out there saying, the Lord is doing this to get you to repent and do what He’s asked you to do.
Tim Moore: I love that story because twice in that very opening chapter of Haggai, he says, consider your ways. In other words, if you go back to the original Hebrews it says, let your heart be turned to consider your ways. In other words, all these things you’re doing are coming to nothing. In other words, you’re not profiting even from the labor of your hands and all your efforts because you’re not honoring God. So even that blight, as you say, that punishment for a season was to get people to think about where they were headed, the wrong direction, and turn back to repent and turn back to God.
Nathan Jones: Absolutely.
Nathan Jones: You know, it’s interesting, I got a few statistics here we can go through if you’d like, but I’m going to actually skip ahead because I want to show what some of these people who are looking at the signs out there and this is how they’re interpreting it. I’ve read this one article, it’s by the Driscoll Report, it says, Scientists long ago warned that climate change would contribute to an increase in both, what, the frequency and severity of freak weather. Wait a minute. Didn’t the Bible say that as the signs of the times progress towards the Lord’s return, they would increase in frequency and intensity, almost word for word.
And you’ve got Germany’s foreign chancellor, Angela Merkel, she says, “We have to get fast in the fight against climate change. Global leaders also have to come to the same conclusions after the UN delivered a code red for humanity.” So here you’ve got the Lord who’s clearly using nature. I mean, the signs are increasing in frequency and intensity, just as the Lord said. And we can pull up the statistics and to talk about those and prove that. But the world being secular and not spiritual, not having a Holy Spirit only interprets it from a humanist perspective. And of course, that is well, it’s got to be manmade global climate change. And yet they’re like, well, if God had wanted us to do something different, He’d give us a sign. What do you mean, give us a sign? They’re all over the place.
Tim Moore: The sad thing even about Angela Merkel is she has is revered as a good leader in Germany, but she was part of the Christian Democratic Party. So she has a name Christian, even in her party affiliation. And yet there’s a spiritual blindness. You know, I think of other examples, when I served in the Kentucky Legislature, we received a magazine called Governing Magazine. And one of the cover articles while I was there receiving this magazine every month was an article about how governments across the nation were advocating for resiliency in the face of ever more frequent and intense natural disasters. And so the secular magazine was basically proclaiming the fulfillment of Bible prophecy in our day and age. And yet there’s a spiritual blindness.
You know, Nathan, I think sometimes it’s hard to wrap our minds around what God either allows or causes. So let’s bring it home even to a personal nature. This morning, we were praying for people in our morning devotion who have had all sorts of physical ailments, whether it’s cancer, or disease, or sickness. And you think, why does God allow that? And I think that’s a small version of exactly what you’re talking about, that some of those things happen because the world itself is under a curse. There is going to be cancer, and sickness, and illness. But there are also times when God allows, and He did so in Scripture for individuals to come under specific judgment because of their flaunting of His law or their disregard for what He had commanded. And so it, again, is both. Even when boiled down to the individual level, the only question is how will we respond?
Nathan Jones: Absolutely. And I think people need to respond by understanding that God is in control of the weather. Too much, we even hear Christians say, well, it’s manmade global climate change, it’s global warming. You know, we’ve got to cut back on fossil fuels and stuff like that. Tim, You can go and find at least at least 47 verses in the Bible that say God’s in control of the weather. For instance, Matthew 8:26-27, the disciples said to Jesus, “What kind of man is this that even the winds and the sea obey Him? Or Psalm 148:8, “Fire and hail, snow and clouds storming wind fulfilling His word.” Act 14:17 “He did not leave Himself without witness, that He did good and gave you…” What? “…rains from heaven and fruitful season.” And my favorite Revelation 7:1 is the four angels that control the winds.
So I think as mankind needs to understand that God is in control, we need to give up this, oh we need to fix it ourselves. We need to fix it ourselves, because God is in control of the weather. And if He’s in control of the weather, that means that God is using that weather to wake us up, to come back to Him and repent. Second Peter 3:9 says “God doesn’t wish that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.” And sometimes, brother, that means that God has to pound you down with a tornado or something to get your attention.
Tim Moore: I love what you say about the Lord being in control, because even Jesus, when He was on this earth, most of His miracles dealt with natural occurrences. When He calmed the storm, he said “Peace,” and the storm quit, demonstrating His power over the created order. When He turned water into wine, demonstrated His power over time, and over the very elements. When He broke loaves and fishes and they multiplied in His hands, all of these things demonstrating His power and authority over nature. We call it supernatural acts because most of us can’t see those things happening every day, but it still shows that our Creator, God had power as He manifest Himself in the person of Jesus Christ. And He still does today.
But your passage out of 2 Peter also brings up another tragic reality, and that is that it is Christians, it is people who ought to know better, who sometimes scoff the loudest when we talk about the signs of nature, and the increase in intensity and frequency. So Peter said, “That they will come mockers in the last days following after their own lust and saying, ‘Where is the promise of His coming?’ For ever since the fathers fell asleep all continues, just as it was from the beginning of the creation. For when they maintain this, it escapes their notice that by the Word of God, the heavens existed long ago and the Earth was formed out of water and by water through which the world in all that time was destroyed, being flooded with water.” In other words, God being the Creator, still has authority. And yet the world is not scoffing in this same regard, because they don’t even believe the Word of God. It is people sometimes inside the church who are saying nothing has changed, it all continues just as it ever has. And I find that to be most tragic of all.
Nathan Jones: Yeah, I do remember the very first Bible conference that I was here way back in the day. I was on traffic duty. I was out there with my little yellow jacket and all and directing traffic. And the church was right next to a plumbing company. And so one of the plumbing trucks came up and parked and the guy came out and is kind of looking around at all the people. And he comes up to me and says, “What’s going on here?” I said, “We’re holding a Bible prophecy conference.” He says, “Really?” He said, ‘Oh, come on, that stuff is nonsense. It’s always been the same since the beginning.” And it was like, wait a minute, that 2 Peter 3 right there.
Tim Moore: Right there.
Nathan Jones: He is a scoffer. And what are the three things that scoffers scoff at? They scoff at the fact that Jesus is ever coming back, that the Earth was created, and that the Earth was deluged by a flood. Well, there’s a modern word for that, and that’s evolutionist.
Tim Moore: Evolutionist. You’re exactly right. A secularist who just disregards that there is a God of nature. Even our founders we’d say sometimes they weren’t evangelical Christians, but they wrote about nature and nature’s God, understanding that the natural realm falls under the authority and lordship of the Heavenly Father.
Nathan Jones: That reminds me of a particular title of the Lamplighter, that was very good.
Tim Moore: Exactly right. So throughout this year we are talking about the signs of the times in our Lamplighter series. So this comes out every other month. We started in the month of January and February, highlighting the signs of nature, just what we’re talking about today. And so over the course of this year, as Nathan and I dialog about the signs of the times, it will track along with our Lamplighters from January through December. So if you want to read more in depth, we’d encourage you to order or go online and simply read our Lamplighter magazine. Thanks for the plug on that regard, Nathan, because obviously they all ties together.
Nathan Jones: I was excited when you say you’re doing this series because we’re going to spend the entire 2023 on the signs of the time. The first magazine is chock full of great articles about the signs of the times. It’s got great statistics, too, about things that when people say, okay, if things have always been happening as they always been? You can pull up a story by Natural News, natural disaster up more than 400% in two decades. The article says natural disasters are increasing in frequency, ravaging the world, our countries and even our own homes. The number of natural disasters around the world has increased by more than four times in the last 20 years. The Earth is currently experiencing approximately 500 natural disasters per year, compared to 120 per year in the early 80s. So even the scientists, and the journalists, and the newspaper reports and all that do see that they are increasing in frequency and intensity.
Tim Moore: They certainly do. I always think back to David’s experience, and at one point he had grieved the Lord’s heart because he disobeyed Him and he foolishly commanded that a census be done. And the Lord sent word by his prophet Gad saying, “All right, you get to choose,” boy, what a choice this was, between three punishments, and two of them were natural in nature. So seven years of famine coming upon the land, or fleeing for three months from a foreign enemy, that’s kind of a man, you know, being a conduit of God’s punishment, or a pestilence that will come for three days. And David was just too appalled to even choose. He said, I’ll fall under the mercy of God. And God indeed sent a pestilence, what we would call a plague or a viral outbreak, and it killed many thousands of people before He relented.
You know, today I think that we need to take God at His word and realize that He’s giving us, as you said, signs and a wake up call to recognize that the time of His son’s return is near. And quite frankly, there were natural signs that foretold the coming of Jesus the very first time. What are some of those?
Nathan Jones: Well, we there was the star up in the sky. I mean, the magi came to a star that was totally different than what was expected.
Tim Moore: Exactly right.
Nathan Jones: Yeah, there were signs like that. It’s interesting how not only does the Lord use the different signs, then remember the three questions, you know: Will there be signs leading up to the temple being destroyed? There were signs leading up to 70 A.D. and the destruction there were temple. We’re currently at the end of the age. So the second question, there are signs increasing in frequency, and intensity leading up to the end of the church age. But number three, about the signs leading up to the return of Jesus, those are the signs during the Tribulation. And as you know, Tim, the weather is bad as is now, as crazy it is now when you go through the Book of Revelation, and read what’s going to happen. For instance, the Third Seal Judgment is food scarcity and famine. The Fourth Seal Judgment, death by starvation. The animals go wild and start killing people. The Sixth Seal Judgment it reads a great earthquake. The sun became black as sackcloth. The moon became like blood. The stars of heaven fell to the earth. The sky receded up like a scroll when it’s rolled up. And every mountain and island was moved from its place. So, you know, it sounds pretty bad when we get a mudslide or an earthquake or something like that. But can you imagine that during the tribulation, the birth pains will be so strong and so intense that every mountain and island will be moved from its place?
Tim Moore: The very sea becoming blood and undrinkable, I mean, the fresh water on and on. Folks, we’re not, again, naysayers or doom and gloom, we’re not alarmist. We are trying to warn you of the coming wrath of God, and warn you to flee into the loving arms of our Savior before God pours out His wrath on an unrepentant world. You know, Nathan, we talk about resources, and the magazine is a tremendous resource. All the wealth of material that’s available on our website. You can read every article and access every single program that we’ve ever recorded. But we have another resource today that we would encourage you to consider. It’s called the Modern Day Signs of the Times, another video, a DVD by Dr. David Reagan. Tell us a little bit about some of the things that would appear even on this video and why it would be a worthy resource for somebody who wants to dive deeper into the signs of the time.
Nathan Jones: Oh, absolutely. Dr. Reagan covers six categories of end time signs and he shows you how today, just like Tim and I have been talking about, they’re increasing in frequency intensity, the closer to the Lord return. It’s one of the better videos I thought that Dr. Reagan has made, and he’s made a lot of good videos, so I highly recommend it. Check it out on our website at LambLion.com or Christinprophecy.org.
Tim Moore: Yeah. We really encourage you not only for this resource but for all the other things available on our website that you go and check it out. If you would like to join with us in proclaiming this message. We’ve talked about the Prophecy Partner avenue that really is instrumental in giving us the wherewithal to share this message.
But back to the signs of the times. Nathan I know it sounds like we’re getting excited about signs that that are disastrous in their nature. But why are we excited about even signs that would seem to foretell disaster when it comes to the prophetic Word of God?
Nathan Jones: Yeah. I mean, we’re not obviously excited that they’re happening. I don’t want anybody to be wiped out by a hurricane or a tornado, an earthquake or a plague. I’ve lost my own father-in-law last year to COVID, so I understand the implications. But what the Lord is saying is that when these increase in frequency and intensity, it means His return. And His return means the end of this flawed, failed, disastrous, riddled, germ riddled, you could say, but also under the curse world. You know, I just love it when God says in Isaiah 26:9 He says, “For when your judgments are in the earth, the inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness.”
Tim Moore: Amen.
Nathan Jones: And that is really our goal, isn’t it Tim? We want the world to learn righteousness. We ourselves are a work in progress, so we want to learn righteousness too. And so the Lord wants us to be empowered, to understand what’s going on. We go back to that verse we talked about earlier about the Pharisees, they didn’t understand the signs of the times by just going out and looking at nature. We want folks to understand the times so they can prepare for the Lord’s return.
Tim Moore: We certainly do. And the other reality is all of these signs demonstrate that Jesus is coming soon. So as Adrian Roger said, it’s getting gloriously dark. We don’t revel in the darkness. We don’t celebrate the darkness, the evil, the rise in apostasy. But we realize that all those things tell us that Jesus is coming soon. And yet there’s another thing that we eagerly anticipate not just the return of Jesus for His church, not just His glorious Second Coming, but the restoration of all of nature, which Scripture says nature itself groans for, and that’ll happen during the Millennial Kingdom.
Nathan Jones: Absolutely. A time of peace, and righteousness, and justice where the world will know peace at last, the curse will be partially lifted. The animal kingdom will be at peace with humanity, long lives, more food than anyone can imagine. Jesus Christ ruling and reigning from Jerusalem. And that’s why I love Romans 13:12-14, kind of a takeaway. The night is far spent, the day is at hand, therefore, let us cast off the works of darkness and let us put on the full armor of light.
Tim Moore: Amen.
Nathan Jones: So that’s the Lord’s calling for Christians in this day while we wait for His return, to fight the good fight.
Tim Moore: You know, the reality is, if all of nature, as Scripture describes, is groaning for the return of our Lord and Savior to be restored to perfection as God intended during the time of the Garden of Eden. If all of nature is groaning for the Lord to come for the sons of God to be revealed, shouldn’t we be groaning as well? I guarantee you, Nathan and I are eager for His return. We pray you are as well.
Nathan and I hope that our dialog today has been both instructive and encouraging. We are not alarmists, we are watchmen who discern the signs as foretold in Scripture. All of us who are Christians should be looking forward to our soon returning King, and following in the footsteps of the sons of Issachar.
Nathan Jones: First Chronicles 12:32, lauded the Sons of Israel as men who understood the times with knowledge of what Israel should do. You might say, but I don’t understand all that is happening in the world, or exactly what to do. Surely you don’t expect me to singlehandedly do anything about the signs of nature.
Tim Moore: Of course not, except take the Lord at His Word literally. There are secret things that belong to the Lord, but the things He has revealed to us in His Word are there to give us understanding. Only by reading, studying, and believing Him can we stay grounded, even as we observe the chaos that swirls around us.
Nathan Jones: And by recognizing that all of the signs were foretold and then lead inevitably to the end, God is ordained, we can be excited that Jesus is indeed coming soon.
Tim Moore: In the months to come, we’ll dive into the other five categories of signs. For now, we hope that you will be discerning and motivated to sprint to the finish line. Do not lose heart and be tempted to despair. Victory belongs to the Lord, but He has called us to be overcomers and to share the gospel centered message that Jesus is coming soon. In Him we are more than conquerors.
Nathan Jones: We look forward to having you folks join us again next week. Until then, look up and be watchful for your redemption is drawing near.
Tim Moore: Amen.
End of Program