The Great Commission, the Government and the End Times have to do with each other? Maybe quite a bit. It’s an odd combination. When the Great Commission has been fulfilled, will The End Times begin? Are we actually working to bring about the events in Revelation when we spread the Gospel? And then add in the one-world government foretold in the End Times. It’s a weird and scary trio. Will it lead to very weird and scary times?
Let’s look at some passages and find out.
But first, before everyone gets too freaked out over The End, let’s look at the image I chose for this article. It’s an audience sitting in a theater. Or a theatre, depending on where you live. Anyway – from the image, it’s impossible to tell if it’s the beginning or the end of the performance. (OK – it is, but it’s not necessarily obvious.) The truth is, that’s the way to look at the End Times as well. It’s an ending, to be sure.
But it’s also a beginning. A new beginning. And we get to choose whether what comes after the new beginning is awesome or awful. The point is – if The Great Commission and The End Times are linked, then it’s an ending and a beginning. Very symmetric. And the one-world government provides the vehicle by which the events leading up to the End Times are ushered in.
There’s one really huge question we need to ask ourselves, given what’s at stake: What do the Great Commission, the Government and the End Times have to do with all this? Especially, do we want the government involved in that “new beginning”? That can be a tough call for those who are so intent on having the government deeply involved in religion during this life.
Let’s start off by looking at The Great Commission
Mt 28:16 Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. 17 When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. 18 Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
Remember, this is after Jesus was crucified and after His resurrection. Jesus already experienced His ending (as a person) and is now in His new beginning (as a resurrected person). Of course, in Jesus’ case, it’s different because throughout He was always fully God as well as fully human. However, the point is that Jesus the person has just gone through his ending and beginning. For mankind as a whole, the start of the End Times is the beginning of our end. At its close, we see the new beginning for mankind. Some in Heaven with Jesus. Unfortunately, most won’t be.
Also, as I often point out, this one event, the End Times, isn’t necessarily our individual end. Most likely, it’s not. Our individual end is literally the end of our life here. When we die. So, it’s important that we consider this possibility as well when we evaluate the interrelationships between the Great Commission, the Government and the End Times.
Back to what Jesus told His disciples. By the way, we Christians are Jesus’ disciples today. And then He asks His disciples (us) to go out and make disciples of all the nations.
By “all the nations”, Jesus was saying this:
1484 ἔθνος [ethnos /eth·nos/] n n. Probably from 1486; TDNT 2:364; TDNTA 201; GK 1620; 164 occurrences; AV translates as “Gentiles” 93 times, “nation” 64 times, “heathen” five times, and “people” twice. 1 a multitude (whether of men or of beasts) associated or living together. 1A a company, troop, swarm. 2 a multitude of individuals of the same nature or genus. 2A the human race. 3 a race, nation, people group. 4 in the OT, foreign nations not worshipping the true God, pagans, Gentiles. 5 Paul uses the term for Gentile Christians. 1Strong, J. (1995). Enhanced Strong’s Lexicon. Woodside Bible Fellowship.1
Jesus wasn’t saying to make disciples of all the countries, as we might use the word “nations” today. He was saying to make disciples of everyone who isn’t already a disciple, no matter where they live and no matter their heritage, country of origin, Etc. As we’ll see later, that doesn’t mean that literally everyone will become a disciple of Jesus. It’s up to each individual to accept the message Jesus’ disciples are commissioned to deliver. The point was for everyone to at least get the message. 4930 συντέλεια [sunteleia /soon·tel·i·ah/] n f. From 4931; TDNT 8:64; TDNTA 1161; GK 5333; Six occurrences; AV translates as “end” six times. 1 completion, consummation, end. 2Strong, J. (1995). Enhanced Strong’s Lexicon. Woodside Bible Fellowship.
Notice also that Jesus said I am with you always, to the very end of the age. Let’s take a look at “very end” and “age” to see more about what those words meant at the time, as opposed to how we would probably think of them today. First, the word “end”.
Jesus wasn’t saying to make disciples of all the countries, as we might use the word “nations” today. He was saying to make disciples of everyone who isn’t already a disciple, no matter where they live and no matter their heritage, country of origin, Etc. As we’ll see later, that doesn’t mean that literally everyone will become a disciple of Jesus. It’s up to each individual to accept the message Jesus’ disciples are commissioned to deliver. The point was for everyone to at least get the message.
4930 συντέλεια [sunteleia /soon·tel·i·ah/] n f. From 4931; TDNT 8:64; TDNTA 1161; GK 5333; Six occurrences; AV translates as “end” six times. 1 completion, consummation, end. 2Strong, J. (1995). Enhanced Strong’s Lexicon. Woodside Bible Fellowship.
There wasn’t any Greek word for “very”. The English word was added as a way to show the intent behind the Greek word that follows, translated as “age”.
165 αἰών [aion /ahee·ohn/] n m. From the same as 104; TDNT 1:197; TDNTA 31; GK 172; 128 occurrences; AV translates as “ever” 71 times, “world” 38 times, “never + 3364 + 1519 + 3588” six times, “evermore” four times, “age” twice, “eternal” twice, and translated miscellaneously five times. 1 for ever, an unbroken age, perpetuity of time, eternity. 2 the worlds, universe. 3 period of time, age. 3Strong, J. (1995). Enhanced Strong’s Lexicon. Woodside Bible Fellowship.
We believe that God has a plan for His creation, that everything wasn’t just for no reason. Therefore, using a word like “completion” or “culmination” to look at what “end” really means is reasonable. We also know from various prophecies that this world is going to come to an end. Therefore, eternity is not a good choice for what “age” might mean. It has to be something like a “period of time”.
What we end up with then is Jesus saying that He will be with us until God’s plans for His creation – this fallen creation – have been completed. The End. And the culmination of those plans will be to restore His creation to what it was meant to be before the fall. The New Beginning.
Why does this matter?
“We are the first generation that can say without reservation, “We have the technology to actually fulfill the Great Commission in our generation.”” 4The Essential Guide to Spiritual Warfare: Learn to Use Spiritual Weapons; Keep Your Mind and Heart Strong in Christ; Recognize Satan’s Lies and Defend Your Loved Ones” by Neil T. Anderson, Timothy M. Warner
Sure, even the early church in the book of Acts thought The End Times was going to be in their lifetime. But we have to ask, were all the prophecies about the end really attainable at that time? That begs the question, are they now? And – has everyone been reached? Important questions, to be sure. Personally, having worked in the IT field for 36 years, I agree that we are the first ones with the ability to actually fulfill the Great Commission in our generation.
The preceding quote is from the introduction to The Essential Guide To Spiritual Warfare. Here’s the first two paragraphs, which led the authors to that conclusion.
We are seeing the greatest spiritual harvest this world has ever seen. Not since Pentecost have we seen such phenomenal growth of the church worldwide. Africa was less than 5 percent Christian at the beginning of the twentieth century. At the end of the second millennium, it was nearly 50 percent Christian. There were only about 5 million believers in China when the Communist regime took over. Now the estimates vary from 100 to as high as 150 million believers, and missiologists estimate that between 25,000 and 35,000 people are coming to Christ daily in China. Indonesia is the world’s most populated Muslim nation, but the percentage of Christians there has been increasing so rapidly that the government won’t release accurate figures.
Meanwhile, more than 2,500 Christian radio and television stations broadcast the gospel daily to an audience of 4.6 billion. I had the privilege of speaking to the staff of HCJB in Quito, Ecuador, at their annual meeting. I was impressed with their commitment and their technological expertise. The same holds for TransWorld Radio and Far Eastern Broadcasting, who are working together with HCJB to blanket this planet with the good news. They can now package a radio station in a suitcase and broadcast the gospel anywhere in the world. We are the first generation that can say without reservation, “We have the technology to actually fulfill the Great Commission in our generation.”
While we’re talking about technology, we’re also in a position to actually carry out even the prohibition against buying goods without the Mark of the Beast. More on that in a moment.
So this is why it matters. If we are hurtling to the time at which God’s plans for His creation are being completed – with The Great Commission fulfilled, could that possibly be the beginning of The End, and therefore the beginning of The End Times? If – I repeat, If – it is, then we need to be prepared. A while back I did a full series on every phrase in The Lord’s Prayer. One of them, Your Kingdom Come … on earth …, looks at the time when God’s Kingdom would truly come to earth – and asked if we are really aware that’s what we are asking for when we say The Lord’s Prayer. I think – probably not. And yet, although Jesus did give signs of the end of this world, He also said the time is unknown except to the Father – and He warned us about not being ready.
24:37-39 pp — Lk 17:26, 27
24:45-51 pp — Lk 12:42-46
Mt 24:36 “No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. 37 As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. 38 For in the days before the flood, people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day Noah entered the ark; 39 and they knew nothing about what would happen until the flood came and took them all away. That is how it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. 40 Two men will be in the field; one will be taken and the other left. 41 Two women will be grinding with a hand mill; one will be taken and the other left.
Yes, life goes on. It has to. But, as life does go on, we cannot lose sight of what’s coming. Just as we manage our lives in this life, we must also prepare for our lives in the next life. Failure to plan leads to disaster in either case.
Mt 24:42 “Therefore keep watch, because you do not know on what day your Lord will come. 43 But understand this: If the owner of the house had known at what time of night the thief was coming, he would have kept watch and would not have let his house be broken into. 44 So you also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him.
There’s something interesting about that last paragraph. Yes, it’s in a section about the End Times. However, as part of our planning, we must recognize something else as well. I mentioned earlier that the End Times was for people in general. But there’s another “end” that’s been going on for thousands of years. Ever since Cain killed Abel. Remember, Abel died. His life was over.
Every person in the Bible, other than Enoch and Elijah, died. So have countless people since then. And deaths will continue. Up until the Rapture. And so, each of us alive right now is more likely to die than to be caught up in the Rapture. That’s another type of “end” that we must be prepared for as well. Truth is, we don’t know when either one will happen!
Mt 24:45 “Who then is the faithful and wise servant, whom the master has put in charge of the servants in his household to give them their food at the proper time? 46 It will be good for that servant whose master finds him doing so when he returns. 47 I tell you the truth, he will put him in charge of all his possessions. 48 But suppose that servant is wicked and says to himself, ‘My master is staying away a long time,’ 49 and he then begins to beat his fellow servants and to eat and drink with drunkards. 50 The master of that servant will come on a day when he does not expect him and at an hour he is not aware of. 51 He will cut him to pieces and assign him a place with the hypocrites, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”
Now, I’m not predicting when The End is coming. I am pointing out that it could happen at any time. I’m also pointing out that all sorts of things in the world – as they always have – are set up for tremendous wars. I’m also pointing out the technology to do what’s described in that Introduction is also available. So without actually giving a date/time, I do think it’s important for us to be always aware that it could be “now”.
At any moment – there could be an end – and a beginning. However, there are certain conditions to be met. Let’s take a look at some passages related to them.
Bring all things in heaven and on earth together under one head
Eph 1:3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. 4 For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love 5 he predestined us to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will— 6 to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves. 7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace 8 that he lavished on us with all wisdom and understanding. 9 And he made known to us the mystery of his will according to his good pleasure, which he purposed in Christ, 10 to be put into effect when the times will have reached their fulfillment—to bring all things in heaven and on earth together under one head, even Christ.
Eph 1:11 In him we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will, 12 in order that we, who were the first to hope in Christ, might be for the praise of his glory. 13 And you also were included in Christ when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation. Having believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, 14 who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession—to the praise of his glory.
Yes, to bring all things in heaven and on earth together under one head, even Christ. Before we look at that, the “even Christ” may be a bit confusing. So let’s look at a couple other translations to make this verse a bit more clear.
First – the version above is the 1984 NIV. The 2011 NIV has been slightly reworded to make it clearer.
10 to be put into effect when the times reach their fulfillment—to bring unity to all things in heaven and on earth under Christ.
Second, we’ll see Young’s Literal Translation, where we’ll see that the later NIV translation is more in line with the literal, in terms of what it means.
10 in regard to the dispensation of the fulness of the times, to bring into one the whole in the Christ, both the things in the heavens, and the things upon the earth—in him; 5Young, R. (1997). Young’s Literal Translation (Eph 1:10). Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software.
So if all things on heaven and on earth are to be brought together, unified, under Christ – we can see a possible connection between that unification being completed and the culmination/completion of God’s plan for His creation. We can see that maybe The End Times will come when we are all ready to be brought together under Jesus. When we’ve all had the chance to accept or reject Him. And then we’ll also be ready for the Beginning – the new beginning with the new heavens and the new earth. No longer corrupted, but now as God intended.
So that all nations might believe and obey him
Notice the word “might”. It doesn’t say “will”. There’s nothing saying everyone will believe and obey Jesus. But unless everyone is at least exposed to the Gospel, they don’t have a chance to believe and obey Jesus – or to reject Him. So we’re back to the notion of everyone must hear the Good News. If you don’t recognize the phrase, it’s from the closing at the very end of Romans.
Ro 16:25 Now to him who is able to establish you by my gospel and the proclamation of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery hidden for long ages past, 26 but now revealed and made known through the prophetic writings by the command of the eternal God, so that all nations might believe and obey him— 27 to the only wise God be glory forever through Jesus Christ! Amen.
I think a look at the word “mystery” is in order here. It’s not a mystery in the sense that we use the word today.
3466 μυστήριον [musterion /moos·tay·ree·on/] n n. From a derivative of muo (to shut the mouth); TDNT 4:802; TDNTA 615; GK 3696; 27 occurrences; AV translates as “mystery” 27 times. 1 hidden thing, secret, mystery. 1A generally mysteries, religious secrets, confided only to the initiated and not to ordinary mortals. 1B a hidden or secret thing, not obvious to the understanding. 1C a hidden purpose or counsel. 1C1 secret will. 1C1A of men. 1C1B of God: the secret counsels which govern God in dealing with the righteous, which are hidden from ungodly and wicked men but plain to the godly. 3 in rabbinic writings, it denotes the mystic or hidden sense: of an OT saying, of an image or form seen in a vision, of a dream. 6Strong, J. (1995). Enhanced Strong’s Lexicon. Woodside Bible Fellowship.[\mfn]
This is pointed out more clearly by Paul in a later letter to the church in Colossae. Col 1:24 Now I rejoice in what was suffered for you, and I fill up in my flesh what is still lacking in regard to Christ’s afflictions, for the sake of his body, which is the church. 25 I have become its servant by the commission God gave me to present to you the word of God in its fullness— 26 the mystery that has been kept hidden for ages and generations, but is now disclosed to the saints. 27 To them God has chosen to make known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory. Col 1:28 We proclaim him, admonishing and teaching everyone with all wisdom, so that we may present everyone perfect in Christ. 29 To this end I labor, struggling with all his energy, which so powerfully works in me. Col 2:1 I want you to know how much I am struggling for you and for those at Laodicea, and for all who have not met me personally. 2 My purpose is that they may be encouraged in heart and united in love, so that they may have the full riches of complete understanding, in order that they may know the mystery of God, namely, Christ, 3 in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. 4 I tell you this so that no one may deceive you by fine-sounding arguments. 5 For though I am absent from you in body, I am present with you in spirit and delight to see how orderly you are and how firm your faith in Christ is. One final point – while “saints” tends to mean those sanctified by the Pope and known as Saints, in the time of the early church “saints” meant “the Lord’s people”. So saint’s back then means what we today would call believers. Ro 11:25 I do not want you to be ignorant of this mystery, brothers, so that you may not be conceited: Israel has experienced a hardening in part until the full number of the Gentiles has come in. 26 And so all Israel will be saved, as it is written: Ro 11:27 And this is my covenant with them Ro 11:28 As far as the gospel is concerned, they are enemies on your account; but as far as election is concerned, they are loved on account of the patriarchs, 29 for God’s gifts and his call are irrevocable. 30 Just as you who were at one time disobedient to God have now received mercy as a result of their disobedience, 31 so they too have now become disobedient in order that they too may now receive mercy as a result of God’s mercy to you. 32 For God has bound all men over to disobedience so that he may have mercy on them all. 4138 πλήρωμα [pleroma /play·ro·mah/] n n. From 4137; TDNT 6:298; TDNTA 867; GK 4445; 17 occurrences; AV translates as “fulness” 13 times, “full” once, “fulfilling” once, “which is put in to fill up” once, and “pierce that filled up” once. 1 that which is (has been) filled. 1A a ship inasmuch as it is filled (i.e. manned) with sailors, rowers, and soldiers. 1B in the NT, the body of believers, as that which is filled with the presence, power, agency, riches of God and of Christ. 2 that which fills or with which a thing is filled. 2A of those things which a ship is filled, freight and merchandise, sailors, oarsmen, soldiers. 2B completeness or fullness of time. 3 fulness, abundance. 4 a fulfilling, keeping. 6Strong, J. (1995). Enhanced Strong’s Lexicon. Woodside Bible Fellowship.
So once again, we are back to fulfilling The Great Commission. Back to preparing for the time when The End can come. And then the New Beginning can come.
Until the full number of the Gentiles has come in
Next, let’s return to Romans to look at fullness again.
“The deliverer will come from Zion;
he will turn godlessness away from Jacob.
when I take away their sins.”
So, what does “the full number of Gentiles” mean? Was there a preset number – when that number is reached does the world end? Or is it something else?
Full number actually comes from one Greek word.
Col 1:24 Now I rejoice in what was suffered for you, and I fill up in my flesh what is still lacking in regard to Christ’s afflictions, for the sake of his body, which is the church. 25 I have become its servant by the commission God gave me to present to you the word of God in its fullness— 26 the mystery that has been kept hidden for ages and generations, but is now disclosed to the saints. 27 To them God has chosen to make known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.
Col 1:28 We proclaim him, admonishing and teaching everyone with all wisdom, so that we may present everyone perfect in Christ. 29 To this end I labor, struggling with all his energy, which so powerfully works in me.
Col 2:1 I want you to know how much I am struggling for you and for those at Laodicea, and for all who have not met me personally. 2 My purpose is that they may be encouraged in heart and united in love, so that they may have the full riches of complete understanding, in order that they may know the mystery of God, namely, Christ, 3 in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. 4 I tell you this so that no one may deceive you by fine-sounding arguments. 5 For though I am absent from you in body, I am present with you in spirit and delight to see how orderly you are and how firm your faith in Christ is.
One final point – while “saints” tends to mean those sanctified by the Pope and known as Saints, in the time of the early church “saints” meant “the Lord’s people”. So saint’s back then means what we today would call believers.
Ro 11:25 I do not want you to be ignorant of this mystery, brothers, so that you may not be conceited: Israel has experienced a hardening in part until the full number of the Gentiles has come in. 26 And so all Israel will be saved, as it is written:
Ro 11:27 And this is my covenant with them
Ro 11:28 As far as the gospel is concerned, they are enemies on your account; but as far as election is concerned, they are loved on account of the patriarchs, 29 for God’s gifts and his call are irrevocable. 30 Just as you who were at one time disobedient to God have now received mercy as a result of their disobedience, 31 so they too have now become disobedient in order that they too may now receive mercy as a result of God’s mercy to you. 32 For God has bound all men over to disobedience so that he may have mercy on them all.
4138 πλήρωμα [pleroma /play·ro·mah/] n n. From 4137; TDNT 6:298; TDNTA 867; GK 4445; 17 occurrences; AV translates as “fulness” 13 times, “full” once, “fulfilling” once, “which is put in to fill up” once, and “pierce that filled up” once. 1 that which is (has been) filled. 1A a ship inasmuch as it is filled (i.e. manned) with sailors, rowers, and soldiers. 1B in the NT, the body of believers, as that which is filled with the presence, power, agency, riches of God and of Christ. 2 that which fills or with which a thing is filled. 2A of those things which a ship is filled, freight and merchandise, sailors, oarsmen, soldiers. 2B completeness or fullness of time. 3 fulness, abundance. 4 a fulfilling, keeping. 6Strong, J. (1995). Enhanced Strong’s Lexicon. Woodside Bible Fellowship.
Notice the concept of fullness / fulfilling. It’s not a magic number, like once that number is reached it’s over. And it’s not like a game is being played and the first one to reach 21 points wins. But it is real life and death – the second life / the second death. And it’s for everyone. And it’s not over before the Gospel has been spread to “all the nations” – to all the people.
Summary, so far
Maybe there’s a link between The Great Commission. The evidence seems to point that way.
Maybe there isn’t. After all, God’s in charge – not us.
We can look for evidence all we want, but we will never know the time.
On the other hand, we need to be aware at all times, because the end could come at any time. If this helps one person to be more aware – it will have been worthwhile. If it saves even one person – it’s more than worthwhile.
The one world Government and the End Times
The Bible foretells one world government. Not in those words, but there are a number of prophecies leading up to this conclusion. Below is an excerpt from gotquestions.org on this one world government. It’s not a source I’ve ever used before. But it’s a very good summary.
In his apocalyptic vision in the Book of Revelation, the Apostle John sees the “beast,” also called the Antichrist, rising out of the sea having seven heads and ten horns (Revelation 13:1). Combining this vision with Daniel’s similar one (Daniel 7:16-24), we can conclude that some sort of world system will be inaugurated by the beast, the most powerful “horn,” who will defeat the other nine and will begin to wage war against Christians. The ten-nation confederacy is also seen in Daniel’s image of the statue in Daniel 2:41-42, where he pictures the final world government consisting of ten entities represented by the ten toes of the statue. Whoever the ten are and however they come to power, Scripture is clear that the beast will either destroy them or reduce their power to nothing more than figureheads. In the end, they will do his bidding.
John goes on to describe the ruler of this vast empire as having power and great authority, given to him by Satan himself (Revelation 13:2), being followed by and receiving worship from “all the world” (13:3-4), and having authority over “every tribe, people, language and nation” (13:7). From this description, it is logical to assume that this person is the leader of a one-world government which is recognized as sovereign over all other governments. It’s hard to imagine how such diverse systems of government as are in power today would willingly subjugate themselves to a single ruler, and there are many theories on the subject. A logical conclusion is that the disasters and plagues described in Revelation as the seal and trumpet judgments (chapters 6-11) will be so devastating and create such a monumental global crisis that people will embrace anything and anyone who promises to give them relief.
Once entrenched in power, the beast (Antichrist) and the power behind him (Satan) will move to establish absolute control over all peoples of the earth to accomplish their true end, the worship Satan has been seeking ever since being thrown out of heaven (Isaiah 14:12-14). One way they will accomplish this is by controlling all commerce, and this is where the idea of a one-world currency comes in. Revelation 13:16-17 describes some sort of satanic mark which will be required in order to buy and sell. This means anyone who refuses the mark will be unable to buy food, clothing or other necessities of life. No doubt the vast majority of people in the world will succumb to the mark simply to survive. Again, verse 16 makes it clear that this will be a universal system of control where everyone, rich and poor, great and small, will bear the mark on their hand or forehead. There is a great deal of speculation as to how exactly this mark will be affixed, but the technologies that are available right now could accomplish it very easily.
There’s something very interesting about what’s buried in there. Currently, we have various countries around the world that don’t get along. If there was another world war now, it would probably be like WW II. More than one side fighting each other. Multiple countries trying to snap up whatever other countries they can.
However, the “final battle”, the one with good versus evil, God versus Satan, there can be only two sides. Not only that, but every country on the planet must be on the side of evil. That’s why the scenarios with the toes and the horns must take place. One world government, controlled by Satan. And every country, all in that one world government, fighting against God.
It’s inevitable. It will happen. No matter how much we, as individuals, try to prevent it, it is going to happen. It seems to me, the bigger question is whether we’re so lost in government support for Christianity, or whatever religion we follow, that we lose sight of the bigger picture and get sucked up into it. In other words, end up on the wrong side of the final battle, and lose our souls in the process.
It’s conceivable, and I believe it’s happening, that when we turn responsibility for the Great Commission over to the government, we can contribute to the creation of this foretold one world government. When we give the government responsibility for “making disciples”, it will be in the image the government wants, not in the image Jesus gave us to follow. Sure, there are good intentions. But then, we know where good intentions end up. If not – there are disputes about who wrote it first – but the quote is: The road to Hell is paved with good intentions.
Ending up with one world government will give us one leader over everyone. One monetary system, most likely cashless. The ability to control who can buy and sell things, because of that monetary system. The ability to find and track people. People’s worst-case nightmare scenarios will be like child’s play compared to what’s coming.
Hearing is not believing
Remember earlier, I said, “As we’ll see later, that doesn’t mean that literally everyone will become a disciple of Jesus.”
Well, it’s time to return to that topic. The Great Commission is to reach everyone. But every single person who is reached still has to make a decision for themselves whether to accept or reject the message of the Gospel. Jesus has already told us that many will reject it.
Mt 13:24 Jesus told them another parable: “The kingdom of heaven is like a man who sowed good seed in his field. 25 But while everyone was sleeping, his enemy came and sowed weeds among the wheat, and went away. 26 When the wheat sprouted and formed heads, then the weeds also appeared.
Mt 13:27 “The owner’s servants came to him and said, ‘Sir, didn’t you sow good seed in your field? Where then did the weeds come from?’
Mt 13:28 “ ‘An enemy did this,’ he replied.
“The servants asked him, ‘Do you want us to go and pull them up?’
Mt 13:29 “ ‘No,’ he answered, ‘because while you are pulling the weeds, you may root up the wheat with them. 30 Let both grow together until the harvest. At that time I will tell the harvesters: First collect the weeds and tie them in bundles to be burned; then gather the wheat and bring it into my barn.’ ”
We need to recognize whether we’re “weeds” or “wheat”. If we don’t pay attention, don’t look closely at ourselves, it’s easy to think we’re wheat. If we don’t look closely at ourselves, don’t ask God in prayer what He thinks of us, we may find out too late that we’re weeds.
But don’t just take my word for it. Here’s Jesus’ explanation of the Parable of the Weeds.
Mt 13:36 Then he left the crowd and went into the house. His disciples came to him and said, “Explain to us the parable of the weeds in the field.”
Mt 13:37 He answered, “The one who sowed the good seed is the Son of Man. 38 The field is the world, and the good seed stands for the sons of the kingdom. The weeds are the sons of the evil one, 39 and the enemy who sows them is the devil. The harvest is the end of the age, and the harvesters are angels.
Mt 13:40 “As the weeds are pulled up and burned in the fire, so it will be at the end of the age. 41 The Son of Man will send out his angels, and they will weed out of his kingdom everything that causes sin and all who do evil. 42 They will throw them into the fiery furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. 43 Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the kingdom of their Father. He who has ears, let him hear.”
Tough words. But they aren’t mine. And they aren’t words that any of us can change. They are what they are. But then, the Good News of The Gospel is also what it is – a gift, a way for us to avoid being burned in the fire. If we choose to accept the gift. And if we choose to pay attention. If we recognize what the Great Commission, the Government and the End Times have to do with each other.
Conclusion – The Great Commission, the Government and the End Times
The End Times will come. They are promised in the Bible. Judgment will come. It’s also promised in the Bible. Salvation is available, to those who hear of it. That’s also promised in the Bible.
As far as The End is concerned, there is one other “end” we should look at. I mentioned it briefly earlier. It’s the end of our lives on this earth. As far as “being ready for the end”, on an individual basis, the end of our life on earth is even more final than the beginning of the end of the world. Why? Because when our life is over, so is our chance to turn to God. And if we already have turned to Him, our chance to work on fulfilling the Great Commission is over when we pass from this world. When Armageddon comes, there’s a good chance we’ll be raptured (the true Christians), or die during the tribulation period, but even that awful time still provides a window of opportunity. The Bible makes it clear that most will reject that chance. However slim the chances are, it is still a chance – whereas when the heart stops beating and the brain no longer functions – all opportunities are gone. Forever.
Too many people will say, “I’ll get around to God later.” Maybe after college. Or maybe after getting married. Maybe after the kids grow up. Or maybe after the career is well along the way. Maybe after the career is over. After … And then we get older and think it’s too late. We blew it.
Well, yes, if we wait – we did blow it. At least we blew the time that we spent on something else besides God. Because God could have and should have been part of all those things we waited for. I dare say, had we included God in those things, then one of two things would have happened. One – they would have been much more fulfilling. Or two – God would have led us someplace else that would have been more fulfilling.
So we waited and waited. Is it really too late? If you’re reading this, then the answer is no. You’re alive. You haven’t died yet. And The End hasn’t come yet. And as long as both of those statements are true, then you still have time to work on The Great Commission. More correctly, God still has time to use you in fulfilling The Great Commission. There are more opportunities than you might think.
For more on that thought, see part 2 – “Lord, you have been our dwelling place”, from Psalm 90.
A prayer of Moses the man of God.
Ps 90:1 Lord, you have been our dwelling place
throughout all generations.
Ps 90:2 Before the mountains were born
or you brought forth the earth and the world,
from everlasting to everlasting you are God.
Ps 90:3 You turn men back to dust,
saying, “Return to dust, O sons of men.”
Ps 90:4 For a thousand years in your sight
are like a day that has just gone by,
or like a watch in the night.
Ps 90:5 You sweep men away in the sleep of death;
they are like the new grass of the morning—
Ps 90:6 though in the morning it springs up new,
by evening it is dry and withered.
Ps 90:7 We are consumed by your anger
and terrified by your indignation.
Ps 90:8 You have set our iniquities before you,
our secret sins in the light of your presence.
Ps 90:9 All our days pass away under your wrath;
we finish our years with a moan.
Ps 90:10 The length of our days is seventy years—
or eighty, if we have the strength;
yet their span is but trouble and sorrow,
for they quickly pass, and we fly away.
Ps 90:11 Who knows the power of your anger?
For your wrath is as great as the fear that is due you.
Ps 90:12 Teach us to number our days aright,
that we may gain a heart of wisdom.
Ps 90:13 Relent, O LORD! How long will it be?
Have compassion on your servants.
Ps 90:14 Satisfy us in the morning with your unfailing love,
that we may sing for joy and be glad all our days.
Ps 90:15 Make us glad for as many days as you have afflicted us,
for as many years as we have seen trouble.
Ps 90:16 May your deeds be shown to your servants,
your splendor to their children.
Ps 90:17 May the favor of the Lord our God rest upon us;
establish the work of our hands for us—
yes, establish the work of our hands.
As I said, for more on this, see part 2 – “Lord, you have been our dwelling place“, from Psalm 90
And don’t forget to pray about our opening question: The Great Commission, the Government and the End Times have to do with each other?