THE LAST DAYS ACCORDING TO JESUS by Ray Pritchard Not long after the terrorist attacks on September 11, Christians (and many non-Christians) began asking how the current world crisis relates to Bible prophecy and the Second Coming of Christ. The early answer goes like this: “We don’t know yet.” I am not aware of any specific Bible passage that predicted the collapse of the World Trade Center or the attack on the Pentagon. However, that doesn’t mean these events are without prophetic importance because when the Bible talks about the last days, it does so in terms of great movements in history. For instance, Jesus warned that we would hear of “wars and rumors of war” (Matthew 24:6). Not every war is predicted in the Bible but the endless cycle of warfare is mentioned as something that will be with us until the Prince of Peace returns to set things right. During the final week before his crucifixion, Jesus took his disciples aside to a private location on the Mount of Olives. There he revealed the future to them in a message we call the Olivet Discourse. You can read it for yourself in Matthew 24-25. It is vitally important not only for its detail but also because it was Christ’s final detailed teaching regarding his return to the earth. In order to help us find a solid foundation for our faith in these days of national crisis, I have decided to preach through the Olivet Discourse over the next seven Sundays. Here is the outline of the series: October 21 Countdown to Armageddon: Six Signs of the Second Coming Matthew 24:1-14 October 28 Showdown in Jerusalem: The Rise and Fall of the Antichrist Matthew 24:15-28 November 4 Sound the Trumpet! Christ’s Second Coming to the Earth Matthew 24:29-35 November 11 Does Anybody Really Know What Time It Is? Why Christ May Come at Any Moment Matthew 24:36-51 November 18 Ten Sleepy Virgins: Are You Ready to Meet Jesus? Matthew 25:1-13 November 25 Life on the Edge: Make the Most of Every Moment Matthew 25:14-30 December 2 Sheep on the Right, Goats on the Left: The Final Separation of the Saved and the Lost Matthew 25:31-46 As we prepare to launch this new series, I would like you to consider doing three things: 1) Take time to read Matthew 24-25 on your own, 2) Invite a friend to come to church with you during this series, 3) Purchase and read a book on Bible prophecy. Starting next Sunday, we’ll be offering several excellent books in our Resource Center that will help you understand current events in the light of the Second Coming of Christ.