By Grant Phillips
Apostasy comes from the Greek word “apostasia.” It means; a falling away, defection, or apostasy. The King James Version (KJV) and the New King James Version (NKVJ) translate it “falling away.” The New Living Translation (NLT), New International Version (NIV), and the English Standard Version (ESV) translate it “rebellion.” The New American Standard Bible (NASB) translates it “apostasy.”
“Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;” (2 Thessalonians 2:3)
The question at hand is, “Are we in the days of apostasy?”
The Scripture is clear that in the last days prior to Christ’s return, there will be an age of apostasy, or rebellion, against God. When this age of apostasy has run its course on God’s yardstick, the Lord will return.
The next event on God’s calendar is the rapture of His Church. There are no signs for the Rapture. Afterwards, the period commonly known as the seven years Tribulation (Daniel’s 70th Week) will occur. This is prophesied in Daniel 9:20-27. At the end of the Tribulation, Jesus will return to the earth (Second Advent).
During the Tribulation period, apostasy will reign on earth primarily due to Satan’s desperate, but futile, attempt to dethrone God. Even though the world will be falling apart around everyone’s ears, most men will still curse God instead of pleading for forgiveness and salvation.
As dark clouds form in the sky prior to a storm, the clouds of apostasy are getting darker as we approach this seven year period; i.e. the Tribulation. We are in the preparatory stage of apostasy, and even now the world wants nothing to do with God and is getting more aggressive toward those who belong to Him.
Our country for example, once a Christian nation, has kicked God out of every area of our lives, but then we have the audacity to say, “God bless America.” Our hypocrisy is flabbergasting!
I well remember a time when most everyone in my little world was, at the minimum, respectful toward anything related toward God. The Bible and all it stood for received respect from even the most vile of persons. Generally speaking, people respected each other. The Ten Commandments wasn’t just for those who followed God, but all accepted those standards and tried to obey them. We now live in a country I no longer recognize.
I recall churches, in the not too distant past, where great preaching was heard. The Bible was actually taught from the pulpit. Pastors called for repentance and unabashedly proclaimed the name of Jesus. Children were actually taught the Bible in Sunday School and Vacation Bible School. Church members visited the lost and sick in the community, and people came to church to respectfully worship Jesus and learn of Him. By and large, this is not so today.
Most want nothing to do with Jesus, the Bible or anything else associated with God. Of those who do come and sit in the pews, most just want to be entertained and have a warm fuzzy feeling when they leave, and they don’t want to stay long.
Society is attacking anything to do with God in every area of our lives and it shows. The world is rapidly becoming more and more anti-God and dangerous.
What used to be defined as evil is now good, and what used to be defined as good is now evil. (Isaiah 5:20)
The word “shame” is no longer recognized, because few know what it is. Men and women of character are shrinking in number because we as a society have lost all conscience of morality, dignity and honor. Most in our society live strictly for themselves with little to no thought of others. We are selfish, spoiled and corrupt, and the full onslaught of apostasy has not even arrived!
Most in today’s society see nothing wrong with the sins they have crawled in bed with and flaunted in the face of God. “We are our own god!” they say. They are like a child who has left the nest to be on their own and has gone stark raving wild with no thought of tomorrow.
The saddest part is that most in the church have failed their families, friends, and neighbors by their silence and by their compromised living. The Bible says, “How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?” (Romans 10:14) Most of the preachers have failed and those who are Christians but not preachers have failed.
The word “preach” means to proclaim or to be a herald. Most think it is “the preacher’s job” to witness, but it isn’t just “the preacher’s job.” It is every Christians’ responsibility to proclaim Jesus to those we come in contact with. Why isn’t this being done on a large scale by those who claim to be Christians? It is obvious. Apostasy has crept in the back door of the church and Satan is having a ball.
I say again that this is just the beginning. When the church is removed (Rapture) and the Holy Spirit of God lifts His hand of restraint upon Satan, apostasy will have a free hand to do Satan’s will.
It is way past time for those of us who say we are Christians to start acting like it. The tide of evil is not going to be reversed. However, we can prevent some from joining Satan in hell by our witness. The Rapture has not yet occurred, so we still have time to try to save some. We need to be much in prayer and unashamed to stand up for our Savior and Lord.
Or is He our Lord? If Jesus Christ is our Savior, then it stands to reason He should be our Lord. Is He? Let us challenge each other to stand in the light in these dark days. Maybe someone will notice and want what we have, and that of course is Jesus Christ.