Generation of the Beast?

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12993596_mEvery day we are inching toward the one-world government predicted by Scripture. But it is not biometric computer chips, the proliferation of surveillance cameras or the NSA’s spying on American citizens that has me concerned. What alarms me is a new mindset that is becoming entrenched in the world. I believe people are getting frightfully close to openly welcoming the “man of sin.”

One thing that has puzzled me over the years is how it could be possible for billions of people to willingly take the “mark of the beast” in spite of the fact that it has been foretold in Scripture. Yet, it seems that spiritual forces are quietly at work which are bringing people to the point of willingly yielding their souls to Satan.

To accomplish such a feat has entailed a decades-long scheme that has been both comprehensive and brilliant in its scope. Unquestionably, there are many factors at work, but I believe the two primary keys the enemy is fostering within humanity are Cynicism and Delusion.

The devil has known that before he can present himself as a viable object of man’s worship, he must first destroy the testimony of the Church. Belief in the biblical claims about the character of Jesus Christ is the center of the Christian faith. It is not organized religion. It is not systematic theology. It is not emotional worship in a mega-church. It is a relationship with a Person. Satan understands this better than most Christians and he is ruthlessly working to destroy the trust in Jesus Christ that forms the basis for this relationship

I believe the “last days” spoken of in Scripture began in the late 60’s. There was a definite change in the corporate mindset of mankind. A powerful spirit of rebellion was birthed in the Haight-Ashbury district of San Francisco in 1968 which then swept across America and subsequently spread throughout the rest of the world. It was this movement that birthed the drug culture, the sexual revolution and all the vices that came with them.

God’s answer to what Satan spawned was the Jesus People Movement of the early 70’s. Hollowed out young people entered the kingdom of God by the droves—myself included. A wave of expectation for the return of Christ swept through our ranks. Books such as Hal Lindsey’s “The Late, Great Planet Earth” became bestsellers. But in our exuberance, we overlooked the fact that Paul had said that the Second Coming would not occur “unless the apostasy comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed.” (2 Thessalonians 2:3)

The fervor surrounding the coming of the King gradually gave way to a growing disillusionment. Before long, “mockers… following after their own lusts” were sneeringly questioning the return of Christ. “Where is the promise of His coming?” (2 Peter 3:4) A new Cynicism began to emerge regarding biblical prophecy.

Nevertheless, the Church shrugged off this disenchantment and only seemed to grow stronger. In the early 80’s, the Evangelical Movement seemed to explode in America and around the world. Then the scandals started. People began to wonder if there were any Christian leaders they could trust. Faith-destroying Cynicism deepened.

Even as believers were losing trust in their leaders, their own indulgence in television and later the Internet began gutting Christians of a real love for Jesus. Personal devotions were seen as unnecessary or even legalistic. Christians continued with “a form of godliness,” but their hearts were being stolen by the devil. Callousness opened the door to greater unbelief.

After some forty years of this relentless assault upon the veracity of Christianity, it seems that Satan has finally achieved his great goal of destroying the testimony of God’s people. The bright faith that thrived during the Jesus Movement has now given way to a deep and powerful Cynicism.

The second phase of his plan has also taken time to unfold. First the Internet, then email, then cell phones, then texting. Each new technological advance has deepened man’s addiction to the cyber world.

Perhaps the most impactful piece of the Internet realm has been social media. This new form of entertainment is altering every aspect of life for young people. Cyber space has allowed the youth of our day to create their own reality—online. In this pretend world, they can present themselves in any image they wish. It is all built upon an illusion that they want to believe about themselves and, in turn, present to the world.

One Internet observer wrote that social media is turning young people into “faux celebrities—the equivalent of lead actors in their own fictionalized life stories.” He went on to say, “On Facebook, young people can fool themselves into thinking they have hundreds or thousands of ‘friends.’ They can delete unflattering comments. They can block anyone who disagrees with them or pokes holes in their inflated self-esteem. They can choose to show the world only flattering, sexy or funny photographs of themselves (dozens of albums full, by the way), ‘speak’ in pithy short posts and publicly connect to movie stars and professional athletes and musicians they ‘like.’ Using Twitter, young people can pretend they are worth ‘following,’ as though they have real-life fans, when all that is really happening is the mutual fanning of false love and false fame.”

When I read this man’s comments, I was struck with the sense that young people are being indoctrinated into deep narcissism—a sort of corporate and widespread Delusion. And that word—Delusion—immediately reminded me of what Paul predicted about the generation who will embrace the Antichrist:

“The lawless man is produced by the spirit of evil and armed with all the force, wonders and signs that falsehood can devise. To those involved in this dying world he will come with evil’s undiluted power to deceive, for they have refused to love the truth which could have saved them.” (2 Thessalonians 2:9-10)

These words take on a whole new meaning in light of the cyber world of make-believe which is currently fashioning our culture. Of course, unbelievers have always been deceived about their spiritual condition. But in order to get the people of the world to the place where they will ignore clear-cut biblical prophecies about the Antichrist and openly worship him, Satan must first bring them into a new level of Delusion. Social media may only be a precursor to even more powerful forms of media that the enemy will use to influence people. Who knows what is coming next?

Is it possible that the kids playing down at the schoolyard are part of the “Generation of the Beast?” Only the Lord knows the answer to that question. But I do believe that before it is over, Cynicism and Delusion will each play a major role in bringing people to the point that they will willingly—even gladly—yield their hands and foreheads to the mark of the beast.

 

 

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About the Author:

In 1986, Steve founded Pure Life Ministries (PLM), the first ministry in the world to sexual addicts. Over the years he and his wife Kathy did their utmost to create a spiritual atmosphere for men who entered the PLM residential center. It was part of God's plan for him to begin this ministry, but over the years the Lord laid a burden on Steve's heart to call the Church back to holy living. In 2008, Steve stepped down from running PLM to devote the rest of his life to exposing the great apostasy, calling people to repentance and leading Christians into an eternal perspective. Follow Steve Gallagher on Google+
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Comments

  1. Greg Gordon  January 6, 2014

    Important article brother, thank you for sharing your burden. We must as believers be on our guard and awake unto righteousness in these days of darkness coming upon us.

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  2. James Haire  January 6, 2014

    OML, ..if this is true, and I’m not saying it’s not, then we ALL (young or old) have taken part of taking the mark.

    Lord, forgive me. I STILL await Your coming.

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  3. Rick Townsend  January 6, 2014

    Grace and peace to you, Steve!

    May God bless you and your ministry for your willingness to preach the truth! Your comments on delusion are timely given our current obsession with digital media.

    About 18 months ago, I went on a “major media news fast” including internet media. I praise God for discernment, as I now understand that what passes for “news” on the vast majority of media outlets isn’t really news at all. It is more accurately described as a “narrative” or “talking points.” The objective isn’t to report factually, but to get you to believe and adopt a certain viewpoint.

    Too many Christians are falling under this delusion as they place their faith and trust in these “news outlets,” expecting them to report the truth. Too many have completely bought into the narrative and look only for “news” that will corroborate what they already believe.

    In either one of these situations there is great danger for believers (not to mention unbelievers). On one end of the spectrum, many believers have bought the lies from these “news” sources and become fatalistic about the state of our world, country, economy, government, etc.

    On the other end of the spectrum, other believers have decided they must proclaim their political beliefs loudly and actively struggle against people and agencies they believe to be “the enemy.” This type of behavior can potentially lead to the pursuit of erroneous doctrines such as dominionism, and we are seeing this more and more in the evangelical church over time.

    What Christians at both ends of this spectrum fail to remember (and cling to) is simply this: we already have access to the TRUTH through our acceptance of Christ as Savior and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit!

    In 1 Thessalonians 5:21, Paul exhorts us to “Test all things; hold fast to what is good.” We should actively pray and ask God for discernment to know what is true and what is false.

    Colossians 2:3 commands us to, “Set your mind on things above, Not on things of the earth. For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.” Remember that God is still on His throne and this earth is not our home! One day Jesus will return to remove us from this world of sin, sorrow and suffering. We have an infinite source of hope that the world can’t access, which brings me to my last point.

    In 2 Timothy 4:2 we are exhorted to “Preach the Word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and teaching.” Our marching orders have been issued: we need to be in the world sharing the Gospel to those who don’t have Jesus yet. If we would be more faithful about the Great Commission, we wouldn’t worry about all of the bad stuff reported on the “news outlets.”

    These are dark times and there is strong delusion afoot. However, Christians need not worry! God will gladly provide discernment to know the truth and the strength to be about His business in these last days if we will but ask Him for it!

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    • Steve  January 7, 2014

      You make a good point, Rick. It’s frightening how much we are being programmed into the “group think” of this world system through all of the different forms of media.

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  4. Chris Ardern  January 6, 2014

    Very good article, I agree and teach the same thing as far when out society took the turn in the 60’s I actually take it back to what happened after WW2 that’s when things really began, the prosperity entitlement mentality and the false alter call, ask Jesus into your heart gospel, when Billy Graham began the mass evangelism, merchandising of souls. 2Pe_2:3 And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingereth not, and their damnation slumbereth not.
    We are surely in the final stages now of the falling away,
    . Thanks for the post

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  5. Lynn  January 7, 2014

    Bless You Brother for speaking truth to a generation that so desperately needs the Lord Jesus Christ. We truly are the end of days generation, satan knows his time is short and he has come to kill steal and destroy. We, his end time witness must pray seek the Lord daily and be filled for the task set before us, and stand up in the power of the Holy Spirit and siege the moment, for we have been born for such a time as this. There is such a slumber within much of the lukewarm church, who is watching? who is alert, awake? who is desiring his return? our lights shinning, our witness fresh? sir may I say if one is not in the harvest field, their lamps are dim and they too are close to falling away, yes the falling away is all around us and many professing Christians lay in the balance, many will fall away and follow after the antichrist. Jude has told us to snatch as many as possible from the fire. All are called to Go! and make disciples of Jesus Christ, even to those in your own family. There are so many of our youth today whom you speak of whom are
    programed church goers, whom know the talk whom know the right things to say and do that are not really saved. These truly are the days of great deception, and the stealing of ones mind. Only the truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and his finished word at the cross, and the conviction of the Holy Spirit, repentance of sins and a turning towards God will save one in these days of deception. Only a true steadfast relationship with our Lord Jesus Christ, can bring about an unshakable faith no matter what the situation, and. those whom are truly his, whom truly love him with their whole heart whom truly seek him and obey his commands, he will never leave nor forsake his precious remnant his bride, this he has promised.
    Blessings to my brothers and sisters in Christ, May we be his faithful witness and bring forth fruit in his kingdom, fight the good fight, and always praying for one another, lynn

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  6. Carol Dickinson  January 8, 2014

    Thank you Steve for that excellant summary of what the devil is doing in the land. I have seen this dimly… but you have clearly clarified it… for all to see, realize and then hopefully do something about… mainly how to pray & practice… to the pulling down of these stongholds of delusion. We need more truth evangelist in the churches today like yourself. More pastors to humble themsleves before the almighty God and preach the full Gospel… so that those who are delusional can see and grasp onto true salvation… by and through Jesus Christ… that they may repent of their sins and follow Him! Halleluyah! Keep preaching the true truth… that the fog may be cleared away.. and clarity may shine! Halleluyah! Praise God! Amen & Amen!

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  7. Russell  January 9, 2014

    Allow me to present a Secular counterpart to Pastor Steve’s insights. Growing up in the 1960’s and 70’s, I was a huge Star Trek fan. After becoming a Christian in the 1980’s, it sort of wrecked Star Trek for me, but I still would entertain a chance to watch the TV show if it was on. During the late 1980’s and through the 1990’s, Star Trek: The Next Generation was producing all new Star Trek TV shows for the fans of the series. I have heard that the creator of Star Trek: TNG, wanted to event the most evil and freighting alien ever conceived for the show when he created the Borg, an assimilated pairing of organic and artificial life forms. The Borg never think as individuals, but as a “Collective” and their only purpose is to assimilate every living thing into their control. This is very similar to the way I see Facebook. In the few and limited encounters I’ve had dealing with Facebook, the parallels to Star Trek’s Borg were frightening! By joining Facebook, you become part of a “Collective.” You share your thoughts and share in the thoughts of others. You are monitored by the Government and law enforcement. You reach out and try and get everyone you know to join the “Collective.” You essentially join your thought processes with an artificial life form (Facebook). You also feel a “connection” to everyone else (your Friends List). When you first make an account with Facebook, you are notified of everyone else already on Facebook that you may know from all areas of your life’s history, and they are notified that you’ve joined. Companies are more and more becoming connected to Facebook, and the only way to contact them directly is through Facebook. Many web sites require you to have a Facebook page to join them. News media and other web sites will only allow you to leave comments on posted stories through Facebook.
    You become addicted to Social Media.
    The Bible says you cannot serve two masters. BEWARE!

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  8. Ted Heath  March 1, 2014

    Wonderful word full of Holy Ghost discernment as always. Having two children who are seemingly addicted to electronic devises and social media this word really hits home. Young people have little perspective in this age of exploding technology never having known life without it.

    Yes I can see how social media can fan the flames of our carnal propensity towards self-deception and pride especially for those who have little or no fear of the Lord.

    Thank you Pastor Steve for your death to self and tuff love.

    If you love the deceived you will have strong words of caution for their deceivers in hopes both deceived and deceiver will awaken………..one of the many things I appreciate about your ministry.

    Ted

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  9. Robert Sturges  March 3, 2014

    Twenty-five years ago my wife and I took tv out of our home. The reason people take the mark physically then is because they long ago took it spiritually. Over time through media they have been giving themselves over to antichrist spirit. As pastor Steve has often written , cosmos has taken their hearts. Even the Church and most pastors write you off if you separate yourself and family from this worlds media. To spend time with Jesus and with each other is a lost practice. Being lovers of pleasures rather than lovers of God , opens us up to spiritual deception. Spiritual life is sapped away as you spend your time in the spirit of the age, and Gods Holy Spirit is grieved away. So do we go to satans filthy polluted well and drink ? Or do we go to the pure fountain of Gods word? The bible clearly says you cant drink from both . It is now so bad that We cant find a church where this compromise isn’t mixed into almost all believers lives including the pastors. I manned a booth for gospel for Asia recently , at a convention in Indianapolis, {12000 men] , every pastor who spoke there cursed from the pulpit. Football in the sactuary now, one local pastor made a mancave in his basement and the men meet every week for prayer meeting. They pray a few minutes and then they watch sports together. His wife was watching American idol upstairs on their cable network. I got so grieved by this prayer meeting I just slipped out unnoticed. Meanwhile a epidemic of meth, our kids go to a school system that looks like Sodom and gommorah. Billions have not the gospel and we are losing ground on all sides. Instead of praying and seeking God for solutions , the church is chasing the latest entertainment. In the story of uncle toms cabin, Tom Loker says, how can we play are whole lives for satan and then hope to cheat him when he comes to collect us.

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