2012 is the start of a prophetic call to wrestle in prayer, intercession and pursuit of God, and like Jacob, even adverse circumstances like a disjointed hip and the like, will not slow us down. I believe it is also the beginning of a call to study some of the 150 chapters of the bible about the Lord’s return and Judgment on the Antichrist empire. We may still be 10-20 years out, but there is a strong invitation like He gave John, Come up here and see thing things which are to come.. Some of you are now thinking ‘Jesus said no one knows the day.’ But He rebuked those who didn’t know the generation, and then said to watch and pray, that the Day of the Lord didn’t come on us like a thief in the night. We can know the generation and He said ‘No one knows the day’ to startle people awake into watching in praying, and yet most people use that verse to lull people to sleep.
It says in Luke 21:34, exhortation one: “Take heed to yourself, lest your hearts be weighed down with carousing, drunkenness, and cares of this life, and that Day come on you unexpectedly.” Then, in Luke 21:36, Jesus tells them to pray always. So the two exhortations that Jesus gives is: take heed to yourself and pray always. He says, “Why? Because if we do not pay attention to ourselves, our heart will be weighed down with carousing, drunkenness, and the cares of this life.” Carousing and drunkenness speaking not just of alcohol, but of being oblivious of in the intensity of the hour, focused on pleasure-seeking and merrymaking. Not that all will be in drunkenness, but of those weighed down, the worst expression of their plight is the drunkenness. Many will be weighed down without drinking. The cares of this life isn’t just the worries, but the contrast of caring about this life, versus caring about the life in God and the coming life of the next age we should be living for.
The net result is this: the Day of the Lord, the second coming, and the events related to it will come upon these people, even believers, unexpectedly because their hearts are weighed down, and they do not have an alert spirit. They do not know what is happening, even when the generation they are living in is the generation of the Lord’s return. Their hearts are weighted down because they did not pay attention to the way they were living, or respond to the urgency of the hour accordingly. We are talking about believers as well.
He is talking to His people here—people who would read the Bible and believers. 21:35: “It will come”—the Day of the Lord, the end-time events—“as a snare upon all those who dwell on the face the whole earth.” The Day of the Lord events: will be a snare, or a challenge. It will challenge believers and unbelievers. It will challenge everybody differently. It will be a challenge even for the red-hot believer. Now He is giving the second exhortation in Luke 21:36: “Watch therefore, and pray always that you may be counted worthy to escape all these things that will come to pass, and to stand before the Son of Man.
CRY OUT DAY AND NIGHT
In Luk 18:7 He basically says it this way, to cry out day and night, to stand faithful at the return of the Son of Man. We want to pray things like Ephesians 3:16 that we would be strengthened to with might to stand in love, filled with the Spirit. We want to ask for revelation of His full end-time plans, as those Scriptures are for us more than any other previous generation.
Luke 21:36 again: “Watch therefore, and pray always.” One exhortation with two different sides to it—two sides to one coin, but one general exhortation. Here is what you are praying: The New King James Version uses the phrase in Luke 21:36: “You would be counted worthy.” Many translations translate this Greek word instead: “You would be strengthened.” The idea of being “worthy” is being able, capable, or strengthened. That is what the Greek word means. Strengthened, able, capable, worthy. That is the feel of what Jesus is saying. Think of this phrase in how many Bible translations say it. Pray that you would be counted worthy, or that you would be supernaturally strengthened. Really this is the call to pray for Ephesians 3:16—that you would have might on the inside.
MIGHT ON THE INSIDE
The reason you watch and pray is that you would be counted worthy to escape all the things that will come to pass and then to stand in victory when the Lord appears. You would be in a place of victory when the Lord comes. You would not be in a place of compromise. You would not be in a place of stumbling, but you would be standing instead of stumbling when the Lord appears.
A snare is a trap. It is the same word—snare or trap. Some Bible translations say snare. Some say trap. A trap or a snare was a very common thing in the ancient world. That is how many people obtained their food. They would go hunting. In the old days, they did not bring a shotgun when they went hunting, as they did not have shot guns. They did not have sophisticated weapons for hunting. The most practical and common way of hunting in order to get food was a trap or a snare. They would put a trap in a hidden way, and then the animal would step into the trap. It is obvious, and then they would be captured.
There is a trap: there is a snare that must be discerned. We must see it and overcome it.
Jesus requires even His people to face the trap. They will see it and overcome it. Some believers would like to just skip the whole challenge. Some believers think, “Let the unbelievers face that trap, and let us skip it.” That is not going to happen. We will face it. We will see it. We will triumph over it, but it will happen on an individual basis. Some believers—probably many believers—I do not think most, but it will be hundreds of millions of believers will be caught in the snare. They will compromise, and I believe there will be that many who will deny the Lord. The great falling away will happen in the hour of the snare.
FALLING AWAY 2ND THES 2:1-4
I believe there will be hundreds of millions who will fall away. There are about a billion believers on the earth. I believe that there is going to be another billion in the great revival, offended by it. Though the Church will increase dramatically, my guess is that potentially, tens of millions, or maybe a couple hundred million will actually deny the faith in the face of this snare. They will not see the snare, and they will not triumph over it. They will be caught by it, and they will denounce the Lord in the intensity of the hour.
The snare is inevitable. It is coming. We cannot pray the snare away. The snare is coming.
However, your response to it is still in the balance. What you will do in the face of the snare as an individual is up to you. That is what He is talking about; that is what He is saying, “This snare is coming. You cannot pray the snare away, but you can pray that you escape the compromise related to the snare.” He tells them in Luke 21:36: “Pray always.” Luke 21:36 is the equivalent of what Paul is really saying in Ephesians 3:16, when Paul prays that a spirit of might would touch your inner man. Beloved, this is a prayer that you do not want to neglect or minimize. You really, really want this prayer to be a priority in your daily life. We are weak and broken people—just folk, normal people, every day people who can receive this inspiration and influence of the Holy Spirit in their inner man. It is just small measures of it, but it really will make the difference. Because it is not enough in the face of the snare to just grit our teeth and say, “I am going to obey. I am going to obey. I am going to obey.”
We are going to need supernatural grace touching our inner man. We are going to need supernatural help. The Holy Spirit says, “I will give it to you.” Jesus says, “If you ask for it, you will get it, but you have to ask for it.” We can grow in supernatural grace even now. We are in birthpangs now, He has given us time to get understanding and revelation and get our hearts on fire, that we would be led by Him in an intense time. When He Eph 3:16 strengthens us with might, our capacity to experience His love is increased. This is such a good daily prayer and something we can cultivate and go hard after, that we would stand confident in love in a coming shaking.