“This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come…” – 2 Timothy 3:1
By Micah Winefeld
According to the Bible, a nation, culture, or person can spiritually reach the point of no return. This means that the Lord’s work of grace and restraint from evil in their lives ceases, and they are left to their own foolish and ultimate demise. When these people reach this point, they cannot be saved and are ripe for the ultimate judgment of God.
In last month’s newsletter, we examined Biblical evidence that focused upon the Holy Spirit’s pursuit of the sinner by doing a work of grace in his conscience. The aim of Holy Spirit work is to work through the conscience of man as a moral compass, or spiritual warning system, and cause him to possess a godly fear of evil that can restrain him from sin that could potentially lead him to humility and repentance.
When a person silences their con- science by ignoring or suppressing its warnings, it can ultimately result in a “seared” conscience. (1 Timothy 4:1) When the conscience reaches this state of numbness and is no longer functioning, the person or persons in that culture no longer fear evil. Therefore, the Holy Spirit cannot continue to strive with that person in their conscience to rescue them from their sin. This is the spiritual point of no return.
The cultural symptoms that are always prevalent when a society has reached the spiritual point of no return have rapidly intensified in the U.S. and around the world since the early 1960s. This can be concluded from the following Biblical case studies. The Lord directed His prophets and apostles to give His people at least four historical exam-
ples of societies that reached the spiritual point of no return. Each of these cultures was severely crushed by His divine judgment.
(1) The days of Noah- Gene- sis 6-7;
(2) The cities of Sodom and Gomorrah- Genesis 18-19;
(3) The Canaanite societies that were cast out by Israel- Genesis 15:13-16; Leviticus 18:1-30; 20:1-27; Deuteronomy 18:9-14; 1 Kings 14:24; and
(4) The historical degeneration of O.T. Israel- 1 Kings 14:24; Isaiah 1:1-9; 3:9-26; 4:20; 8:19-22
What took place in each of these societies should be compared to the divine commentary on all of this in Romans 1:18-32, and the cultural symptoms mentioned in the texts that speak of the global societies that will reach the point of no return in the last days. (Daniel 8:23; 1, Timothy 4:1-3; 2 Timothy 3:1-9; Revelation 9:20-21)
An examination of all of these texts helps us develop a clear pic- ture of the cultural symptoms that are always displayed in a society that has reached the spiritual point of no return. Two things always happen in a society that has no con- science. There will be no private or public restrain of evil; and, demonic influence and possession will esca- late with a multitude of externally visible manifestations.
When the conscience, God’s spiritual warning system, has been turned off in a person or culture, it will be void of any fear of God or man. In that society there will only be one authority – self! The Apostle Paul described this when he said: “This know also, that in the last days perilous [dangerous, terrible] times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves…” (2 Timothy 3:1-2) In the following verses of this text he described the wicked people and their hideous sins that we read about in our daily newspapers and hear about on the evening news.
In a society that has reached the spiritual point of no return there will be no remorse or shame on the part of those who commit public acts of brutal violence and murder, showing no respect for human life. They will engage in acts of sexually deviant behavior, flaunting a lifestyle of no moral restraint. Many will defy all the laws of God and man while exhibiting a spirit of rebellion and lawlessness. Their speech will come vulgar and indecent, filled with cursing, blasphemous, crude, lewd, and filthy remarks. They will exhibit a lifestyle that is filled with deceit, envy, greed, and become gluttons to please their senses, living life only for the pleasure of self.
In essence, the conscience-free society will have no moral boundaries. A philosophy of cultural relativism will permeate society. All of this will be viewed by those who accept this lifestyle as a sense of personal freedom to pursue the passions of depravity. They will not want “to retain God in their knowledge.” (Romans 1:28) Their hatred for God, His Word, His people, and anything that promotes His laws will become very pronounced. (Romans 1:29-31) The righteous saints will watch their standing move from one of toleration, to persecution, finally developing into aggressive and malicious martyrdom. (John 15:18-27; Revelation 6:9-11)
When this society has reached the spiritual point of no return there are always two sins that always become prevalent: homosexuality (Genesis 18-19; Leviticus 18:22-25; 1 Kings 14:24; Romans 1:26), and occult- ism [sorcery, witchcraft, black magic, divination, and astrology] (Deuteronomy 18:9-14; Isaiah 8:19-22; Revelation 9:21). These two sins seem to always display open and defiant rebellion against God.
It is apparent that when a culture is sensitive to their God-given con- science, they are being influenced by the gracious work of the Holy Spirit. However, when they sup- press the revelation of God in their conscience (see Romans 1:18-19), it opens the way for increased demonic influence and possession.
Demons are described as “unclean spirits” 46 times in the Bible. Jesus used this descriptive label for demons many times. This designates them as being immoral, filthy, wicked, and vile in their nature, just like their master – Satan. The early church equated a sensual spirit with demonic influence. (James 3:15) Demons play on the sensual desires of human beings, appealing to their sensual appetites in such a way that does not honor God and is always destructive to the soul, body, mind, and conscience of their victim. Demons love to captivate human minds and bodies to gratify their wicked desires and wreck the lives of those who have been created in the image of God. Most Bible scholars believe that this played a major role in the divine condemnation that brought about the destruction of the world in Noah’s day. (Genesis 6:1-13)
The very nature of Satan and his demons is death, destruction, and damnation. (John 8:44; 10:10; Revelation 9:11) They love to torment people and abuse them both mentally and physically. (Note the many accounts of demon possession in the gospels.) Demons can influence people to commit acts of great violence with the use of superhuman strength, to be nude with no shame, to exhibit weird and abnormal behavior, and cause their sub- ject to abuse his body with no pain. (In the gospels, all of this was dis- played in the life of one man. – Matthew 8:28; Mark 5:1-5; Luke 8:26-29)
It is my personal opinion that the increase of cuttings, tattoos, drugs, and the fascination with vampires, scorpions, snakes, spiders, and skulls are all the external influences of demons in our global culture.
When the collective conscience of a society is “seared,” people will begin to cling to “seducing spirits and doctrines of demons.” (1 Timothy 4:1-2) At the heart of the doctrine of demons is the ultimate lie – the inversion of reality. Isaiah sounded the warning of this doctrine long ago: “Woe to them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter.” (Isaiah 5:20)
Demonic cultures move their subjects from good to evil, from moral purity to deviant moral behavior, from love to hate, from peace to violence, from restraint of their passions to the defiant flaunting of their passions, and from obedience to lawlessness. In this culture, they stop loving life and become obsessed with death. Most tragic of all, Satan completely blinds their eyes so that God becomes Satan, and Satan becomes God.
When a culture reaches this stage of the point of no return, they will commit evil acts and think of them as acts of obedience and worship to their god. Murder, adultery, deceit, and hate are all justified in their inverted value system because their conscience is dead and their mind is being driven by demons and their wicked doctrine. Jesus warned His disciples that the day would come when “whosoever killeth you will think that he doeth God service.” (John 16:2) Can you think of any religion in the world that celebrates violence, deceit, and hatred toward the people of God? Can you think of a religion that describes its heaven as a place of sexual orgy? The fact that Islam is the fastest growing religion in the world is a very powerful testimony that our world is marching toward the point of no return at an incredible speed. Please remember what Revelation 21:8 says: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”
Don’t lose focus of the fact that Satan’s great motive in blinding the mind and destroying the conscience of man is to damn his soul. The Apostle Paul revealed this when he wrote: “…the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.” (2 Corinthians 4:4)
My friend, if you are playing with sin and trying to silence God’s warning in your conscience, please stop and think about what you are doing. You are spiritually moving down a path of degeneration that at some point will take control of you, and you will be damned forever! Only Jesus can set you free from the power and guilt of all your sin! “If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.” (John 8:36) Only the shed blood of Jesus, God’s lamb, can “purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God.” (Hebrews 9:14)
Please understand that our world is running out of time. How long will God wait before His great wrath falls from heaven upon this wicked generation? The answer to that question lies in the Biblical historical pattern of God’s judgment when the world has reached the ultimate spiritual point of no return.
The scoffers in the first century were taunting the church with the question, “Where is the promise of his coming?” (2 Peter 3:4) Peter’s response pointed to the patience of our gracious Lord because He “was not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.” Let us examine God’s track record of how long He has been willing to wait for a culture to be saturated with the spiritual point of no return before He visits them with awesome acts of His vengeance. Remember that the Lord has promised: “Vengeance is mine: I will repay.” (Romans 12:19)
The Days of Noah
In the days of Noah, God waited until “the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. … and the earth was filled with violence. … for all flesh had corrupted his way upon the earth.” (Genesis 6:5, 12-13) With the ultimate exception of eight people, the wickedness of Noah’s generation covered all the earth, all the time, and included all of the people, both in thought and action.
The Canaanite Societies
In Genesis 15:13-16, God told Abraham that his descendants would have to wait for a very long time before they could displace the inhabitants of the Promised Land because “the iniquity of the Amorites was not yet full.” (Genesis 15:16) Over 600 years actually passed (from the time of this announcement to Abram until the conquest under Joshua) before God was willing to command the Jewish people to destroy the inhabitants of the Promised Land. The Lord, ac- cording to His great patience and grace, waited until their sin was “full” – the spiritual point of no return had completely saturated the culture.
The Wickedness of Sodom
Notice that when God destroyed the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah that it was because the sin of homo- sexuality was “very grievous” to Him. (Genesis 18:20) This sin had totally permeated these two cities. Notice that in Genesis 19:4 we are told that the homosexual crowd that had gathered around the house of Lot demanded that he release the two visiting men (really angels sent from God) to them so that they could sexually abuse them all night. This crowd was described as “both old and young, all the people from every quarter.” (Genesis 19:4) Re- member that the Lord had promised Abraham that if there were 10 righteous people in these cities he would not destroy them. (Genesis 18:32) Only four people escape the sudden divine judgment upon these two wicked cities. However, Lot’s wife disobeyed the Lord and looked back and was turned into a pillar of salt. (Genesis 19:26) In the days fol- lowing, Lot’s daughters made him drunk and had an incestuous relationship with him and gave birth to two boys, who became the Moabites and the Ammonites. (Genesis 19:30-38)
O.T. Israel’s Divine Judgment
When Israel came into the land, the Lord told them to destroy all of the wicked inhabitants and warned that if they did not, they would be contaminated with their sins and worship their gods. (Deuteronomy 7:1-5) Israel did not obey, and they eventually followed in the sinful path of the wicked Canaanites. God waited hundreds of years before He brought in the Assyrians to ruthlessly carry away the northern 10 tribes of Israel into exile in 722 B.C., (700 years after the conquest of the land). Finally, He waited an additional 136 years, until 586 B.C., before He brought vengeance upon the remaining Jewish people in the land. He used the brutal Babylonians to kill most of the Jewish popu- lation of the two southern tribes, destroy Jerusalem and the Temple, and carry away a remnant into Bab- ylon. Once again, the Lord exercised great patience and mercy until each group’s culture was saturated with symptoms of the spiritual point on no return. In the days of King Rehoboam, almost 350 years before the Babylonian destruction of Judah, the Bible records what the culture of Judah was like: “And there were sodomites in the land: and they did according to all the abominations of the nations which the LORD cast out before the children of Israel.” (1 Kings 14:24)
The Last Days’ Divine Judgment
The historical cases above cast a very clear shadow of God’s divine patience into the future. According to Daniel 8:23, the Antichrist will come to power when: “the trans- gressors are come to the full.” (Daniel 8:23) This statement is very similar to the one God made to Abraham in Genesis 15:16 about waiting because “the iniquity of the Amorites is not yet full.” This would indicate that the Lord will once again wait until the cultural symptoms that display the point of no return have totally permeated the nations.
Does this mean that the Lord will not come until the majority of the world’s population has adopted or applauds homosexuality and occult- ism? Not necessarily!
Because the events of the last days will eventually usher in the Kingdom of God, the judgment of God will be a little different. The Lord has revealed with amazing detail the events of the last days.
The Lord has determined that He has a unique way for the church to exit this world. This is why it is called a “mystery” in 1 Corinthians 15:51. According to the Scriptures, the global professing church will experience a time of spiritual collapse when the end comes. (2 Thessalonians 2:3; 1 Timothy 4:1-3; 2 Timothy 4:1-4) This was also portrayed by the church of Laodicea. (Revelation 3:14-22) Therefore, the professing church will conclude its divine mission on this earth as a very weak restraining influence. Finally, at this moment of weakness, the true church will be super- naturally removed from the earth in the Rapture, before the Tribulation Period begins. Thus, the unique ministry of the Holy Spirit’s in- dwelling of the true believer will come to an end. This will be the removal of the restraining influence of the Holy Spirit that will take place at the Rapture. (2 Thessalonians 2:6-7)
Notice that immediately after the Apostle Paul spoke of the removal of the restraining influence of the Holy Spirit through the church that he wrote: “And then shall that Wicked [Lawless One] be revealed…” (2 Thessalonians 2:8) The context demands that this is a reference to the Antichrist. Therefore, we must conclude that the Antichrist cannot officially step onto the stage of human history until the true church has been removed. When he comes on the scene, he will be unrestrained in his promotion and portrayal of wickedness and lawlessness during the Tribulation. It will be during this period of time that the world will travel down the final steps of the path to the point of no return.
The days of the Tribulation Period will be totally unique. (Matthew 24:21-22) It will be a time of incredible wickedness, immorality, violence, and deception. Human governments will totally discard the Word of God and unite in their global campaign against the Lord. (Psalm 2:1-3) The collective global culture will have seared their conscience and will act like brute beasts. The laws of decency and respect for human life will be totally abandoned. The lowest forms of decadence, debasement, deception, and disrespect for God and man will become normal and prevalent.
The Lord will graciously send the final Tribulation generation many witnesses who will warn the world and proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ. He will send them two Jewish witnesses, accompanied by the display of incredible supernatural powers. (Revelation 11:1-6) These two great men of God will no doubt have a major influence in the salvation, divine anointing, and training of 144,000 young Jewish men, who will be called out of the 12 tribes of Israel and sent to the nations of the world as evangelists proclaiming the gospel of Jesus Christ. (Revelation 7:1-8; 14:1-5) Furthermore, in Israel, the Lord will raise up a large group of Jewish witnesses who will “keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.” (Revelation 12:17) These believers will be uniquely empowered by the Holy Spirit, to whom will be entrusted a divine ministry of deliverance that will be centered “in Mount Zion and in Jerusalem.” (Joel 2:28-32) All of this will be accompanied by the ongoing wrathful judgment of God that will be recognized as being divine in origin. (Revelation 6:15-18)
Even after all of this, the over- whelming majority of the masses on earth will violently reject the gospel and continue in their demonic state. Concerning these people, the Apos- tle John wrote: “And the rest of the men which were not killed by these plagues yet repented not of the works of their hands, that they should not worship [demons], … Neither repented they of their murders, nor of their sorceries, nor of their fornication, nor of their thefts.” (Revelation 9:20-21)
We live in a culture that is flirting with the ultimate point of no return! America is experiencing the symptoms of a culture that has reached the spiritual point of no return. It has not yet permeated the entire society, but that minority has become very militant and there does not seem to be much of an effort to stand against the tide of filth that is drowning America. It is my opinion that the senior saints are in most cases the bulk of the divine salt that is preserving the U.S. Should our Lord’s coming for His church occur in another couple of decades, we cannot begin to image the impact this would have on our culture. When most of these senior saints pass into the presence of our Lord, the absence of their spiritual preservation as “the salt of the earth” (Matthew 5:13) in our societies will have a major impact in the acceleration of our world’s race toward the spiritual point of no return. Our society is pagan, sensual, and demonic! America has inverted reality!
It is most sad to observe that the church has become a part of the problem, rather than a part of the solution in most of the world. The church seems to be focused upon identifying with a pagan culture, rather than hungering and thirsting after righteousness. For much of the church, the applause of man has become more important than pleasing the Father. The professing church has “a form of godliness, but [denies] the power thereof. ….” (2 Timothy 3:5) The Biblical admonition is: “…from such turn away.” (2 Timothy 3:5)
Those who are being led by the Spirit of God will be in tune with the will of God and what is about to take place in our world. These dear servants of God will faithfully sound out the warning that our world has reached the spiritual point of no return and that we are at the end of this Age of Grace.
God has always called and gifted His faithful and courageous servants of God to mercifully and compassionately warn their generation to flee from His wrath to come. I want to be one of these servants of God. How about you?
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