The book of Revelation promises a special blessing for those that read it.  Ironically it says nothing about understanding it.  That may be because even God knows it is pretty hard to figure it out.  It can also be frustrating when you begin to read the interpretations of others since it doesn’t take long to realize that they vary wildly.  If you took all the theologians in the world and lined them up head to toe along the equator… you still wouldn’t reach a conclusion (rim shot).  It is however important for every believer to read and study the Book of Revelation.  Many who do find their lives revolutionized by the revelation of who Jesus is. That is the intent of the book.  John titles the book The Revelation of Jesus Christ. There are things within this book that you just cannot discover anywhere else.

You will want to tune into our television program during the month of December as I am doing a new series on the book of Revolution.  Rather than trying to interpret every verse and symbol I have broken down the book into its four major themes.  1) God’s glory revealed 2) God’s judgment executed 3) God’s people empowered 4) God’s kingdom established. Everything that takes place in Revelation falls into one of these four themes.  Understanding this basic framework goes a long way to allowing the reader to be able to interpret the book for themselves and embarking on their own Revelation Revolution.

In this post I have included some of the companion slides for the series.  In Part 2 God’s Judgment Executed I go through the three waves of judgment.  The 7 seal judgments, the 7 trumpet judgments, and the 7 bowl judgments.

Few Christians today understand that God is just.  Because we live in a time the bible calls the dispensation of grace many have forgotten that there needs to be a day of reckoning for the earth.  If we do not receive His mercy now, we will have to face His judgment later. The first wave of judgment seems to be political in nature as the Anti-Christ begins his rise to power through deception.  War, famine and death follows on the heels with 1/4 of the earth’s population perishing.

As the seventh seal is broken the 7 trumpet judgments spring forth.  They seem to have a environmental nature to them unleashing ecolical disasters of an extreme that the world has never seen.  By the sixth trumpet another 1/3 of the world’s population perishes.

Upon the blowing of the seventh trumpet the bowl judgments are poured out.  More nastiness ensues.

Before you get completely filled with despair, take encouragement that the scripture promises us, Because you have kept My command to persevere, I also will KEEP YOU you from the hour of trial which shall come upon the whole world, to test those who dwell on the earth (Rev 3:10).  Many have interpreted this to be a reference to the rapture and that we can expect Jesus to return for us just prior to the 7 years of Tribulation. There is only one problem with this; nowhere in scripture does it say that the rapture is prior to the time of God’s judgment on the earth.  In fact it says the opposite.  In John 17:13 Jesus Himself says,  I do not pray that You should take them out of the world, but that You should KEEP them from the evil one.  He specifically states that KEEPING us does not mean taking us out of the world.  Instead, He will empower His people to overcome during this time.  The timing of the rapture is actually quite clear, Immediately AFTER THE TRIBULATION of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken.  Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.  And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other (Matt 24: 29-31).

Once we get through the 7 years of we will enjoy a world like we could never really imagine. Though we clearly get a taste of God’s Kingdom today the fullness is yet to come.  When He returns He will rid the world of the problem of evil and establish His Kingdom on the earth once and for all.  Life may be grand, but the best is yet to come.

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  1. Bruno says:

    Revelations definitely has plenty of scriptural passages to wonder about. What I have sometimes found are people who… hm how to say it… are “too much” compelled by the Book of Revelation? Does that make sense?

    Since it is the book that tells of the future, sometimes people feel too drawn to it and to understand everything it has to say. Have you come across any of those type of people and if yes, what is your normally your rule of thumb when trying to bring them about?

    • Mark Hughes says:

      Bruno, you are correct, it is easy to spend way too much time on the book of Revelation. My rule of thumb is if they are sitting in their basement watching Jack Van Impe and waiting for the rapture they have missed the point.
      It will almost always lead a person into error as they begin to speculate on what everything means. (Not to mention these same people are often the most inactive for the kingdom.)
      Van Impe has been preaching on nothing but the one book for 30 years. Every week he has a new newspaper clip on how it is being fulfilled. It is ridiculous. How come no one ever apologies when they are wrong?

  2. Martha says:

    Even though I do not understand everything yet, Im excited for the end to come. This world is cruel. God has been so patient with all of us including me. When I look at the world I see evil waiting at every corner. People all want what they want( freedom to do whatever without consequence) and not what God wants. I cant wait for it to be over!!

  3. Jeff says:

    This is my favorite part, “Because you have kept My command to persevere, I also will KEEP YOU you from the hour of trial which shall come upon the whole world, to test those who dwell on the earth (Rev 3:10).” The rest of it pretty much scares the H-E-double hockey sticks out of me!!! Should make everyone want to tell everyone they know about Jesus!

    Pastor Mark…if time & space permit,can you give a quick explain on the 144,000 elect? I have in-laws (aunts & uncles) that are JW’s and this is something that’s always a point of discussion.

    • Mark Hughes says:

      The best way to interpret Revelation is to look for a literal interpretation first. If none is obvious then you look for a symbolic one. The numbers in Rev seem to be literal so I think we can assume that there really are 144,000. Also because their tribes are mentioned I think we can also conclude that they are real Jews not JW’s or any gentiles. My guess is they virgin thing is probably symbolic and is a reference to some kind of moral purity or possibly to the fact that they are Christian Jews. Not sure, But I do believe God is going to raise up these people as powerful evangelists to the Jewish (and gentile) world. We have every reason from the book of Romans to believe that there will be a great revival among Jewish people.

  4. Steve says:

    I`ll tell you what. I`ve believed what you have Pastor Mark about the Lord coming after the trib. It just made sense.
    I know we are going to face all kinds of tribulation before the great tribulation and already have. Even here in Canada, we do and will face tribulation if we do not live as the world does. People don`t like you if you live in a way that convicts them. It makes them feel bad even if you`re not trying to make them feel bad. It`s not fun, one bit.
    If we are the salt of the earth and we lose our saltiness, the Bible says we are good for only one thing and that is to be thrown out and trampled by men.
    So if we are all going through the great tribulation,we`ll just all have to deal with our crap then. Or, if Jesus does take us sooner, we just might want to deal with our crap right now. We don`t want to be caught unsalty when He comes, whenever that is.

    • Steve says:

      In reference to my comment about dealing with our crap, I wasn’t refering to us obeying the law, just so nobody can call me a Pharisee or something like that.
      Jesus does call us to take up our cross even though we fail in many areas, and Revelation tells us that so many churches are in need of repentance in different areas. It also gives consequences to those churches for not heeding the warning.
      What I was refering to as crap was working out of our own strength, which would be to tread over those with little strength. Jesus said whatever you didn’t do for the least of these you didn’t do for Me.
      Another thing I was refering to as crap would be allowing sin to creep in and to not cut it off. None of us are sinless but why in the world would anyone just watch sin creep in and corrupt the whole batch. It’ll start off innocent looking and grow into a monster.
      More crap would be Galations 6:2-3 Bear one anothers burdens and troublesome moral faults, and in this way observe perfectly the law of Christ and complete what is lacking in your obedience to it.
      For if any person thinks himself to be somebody[too inportant to shoulder another’s load] when he is nobody[of superiority except in his own estimation] he decieves himself and deludes and cheats himself. Amplified Bible.

  5. Tj Freezn says:

    By the way, after I left certain churches, God let me know directly (through His revelation insight, so no visions or dreams or anything) that His rapture of us is neither the pre-trib nor the mid-trib, but is instead the moment just before He touches Jerusalem’s ground…so in short: yes, post-trib

  6. Steve says:

    All I know is the Church of Philadelphia is the Church of brotherly love. And they don’t have alot of strength. But he who overcomes will become a pillar in the sanctuary of God.

    • Tj Freezn says:

      Interestingly enough, I don’t see the word “love” even hinted in the passage about the church in Philadelphia,
      except for the love God has for them, because they live habitually holy lives in character and good deeds, and resist anyone amongst them who does not and yet claims Jesus as Lord:

      //7″To the messenger of the church in Philadelphia, write: The one who is holy, who is true, who has the key of David, who opens [a door] that no one can shut, and who shuts [a door] that no one can open, says:

      8I know what you have done. See, I have opened a door in front of you that no one can shut. You only have a little strength, but you have paid attention to my word and have not denied my name. 9I will make those who are in Satan’s synagogue come and bow at your feet and realize that I have loved you. They claim that they are Jewish, but they are lying. 10Because you have obeyed my command to endure, I will keep you safe during the time of testing which is coming to the whole world to test those living on earth. 11I am coming soon! Hold on to what you have so that no one takes your crown. 12I will make everyone who wins the victory a pillar in the temple of my God. They will never leave it again. I will write on them the name of my God, the name of the city of my God (the New Jerusalem coming down out of heaven from my God), and my new name. 13Let the person who has ears listen to what the Spirit says to the churches.//

      • Mark Hughes says:

        Philadelphia is Greek for ‘brotherly love’.

        • Tj Freezn says:

          That I was aware of.
          Although if we’re going to take the coincidental meaning of names into account, we should be fair and do the same with the other 6 churches’ cities.
          (just to see if the names were coincidence or not with Jesus’ Revelation messages to them)

          • Mark Hughes says:

            “That I was aware of.”

            I don’t believe you. You said earlier, “I don’t see the word “love” even hinted in the passage about the church in Philadelphia”

          • Tj Freezn says:

            You don’t need to believe me.
            I told the truth.

            Yes, I was already aware that the word “Philadelphia” is a Greek word that basically translates to “brotherly love”.

            When I said that “I don’t see the word ‘love’ even hinted at in the passage about the church in Philadelphia”, I was contextually referring to the passage speaking to the Christians in the “brotherly love” city, not to the name of the city.

            Otherwise, to be fair, please do the same with the other 6 churches’ cities’ names.

            Thank you.
            P.S. I remember you saying that you could be a lawyer if you want to be one, so please do not make the error of ignoring the context, like many of our lawyers do. Thank you.

            • Mark Hughes says:

              Just calling you out buddy. If the name isn’t a ‘hint’ what is?

            • Tj Freezn says:

              I don’t mind being called out, when I’m guilty of what I’m being called out on.

              So, what is your answer to my 6 cities question?

            • Tj Freezn says:

              Ok, to be fair, I went beyond my discernment and did some Google research.

              The Christian sites would usually just spout what other Christian sites said (when you check out what their source was) instead of doing their own research.
              …I found this out by also looking up other names, not just those 7.

              And secular sites would have noticeably different definitions than the Christian ones.
              I ignored their findings if they just went with what sounded good instead of them trying to go for accuracy.

  7. Jim says:

    But it is doubtfull we “christians” can qualify…as Revelation says the dragon (satan) is enraged with the true Christians “those who have the testimony of Jesus and keep the Commandments of God” As most professing christians do not keep His commandments, especially the fourth “Remember the Sabbath day to keep it Holy”..would indicate lack of salvation…this particular Commandment is the most Holy day of them it was implemented at Creation on the 7th day when God blessed and made Holy this day…but mankind has chosen to follow pagan Rome, with the day of the sun..Sunday..the first day of the week…as Jesus lamented to some of his wannbe followers “you follow the traditions of man, and not the Commandments of God”…guess we can expect those sad words from Jesus “depart from me, I never knew you, you who practise lawlessness”….remember as Paul said, “work out your salvation with fear and trembling”…God bless us all!

    • Tj Freezn says:

      Maybe you’re correct, and maybe you’re not, Jim.

      How about we all individually ask God to make it obvious to us where we as individuals are missing His standard for our lives?

      • Jim says:

        It’s a no brainer…Jesus said “if you love me keep my Commandments”, and Apostle John said “those who say I know Him and keep not His Commandments, are liars, and the truth is not in them”…so you can pray all we can pray all we want, if we do not follow His his Commandments why would he answer? This is easy to understand…from Genesis 2, to Exodus 20 to Jesus’ New Covenant with mankind…the big ten have always been in effect, and always will be..and of course the fourth is God’s gift to mankind since Creation…and a very Holy day commemorating His Creation of all things including us…so it is not a case of many correct or not correct,,,,it is what the Bible says, what is the variable is do you believe it or not, and do you follow it or not…it’s up to you…remember narrow is the way to Salvation, broad is the way to destruction..God bless us all!

        • Jim says:

          No Pastor Mark. there is no more to it than that..that is just what you have been taught and chose to accept. This does not make it right. The Bible is very clear..the ten Commandments, which God cast in stone, will always be in effect, whether you or other sunday churches like it or not…Paul said in Romans 3 “do we make void the law so grace abounds? God forbid, we establish the law”..and Apostle James said “Faith without works is dead”…..Jesus himself followed the Sabbath day, the Apostles and their followers Jews and Gentiles followed the seventh day Sabbath, as per the fourth Commandment…and now Pastor Mark, and his sun god crowd decide it is no longer in existence…did you ever wonder where this all comes from? satan cleverly designed this a counterfeit christianity..and the sunday crowd has fallen for it hook, line and oh well you know what I is satan’s way of getting God’s people away from God…to take them out of God’s hands, by their own free will…clever huh? and the sunday crowd just love it…looking for all kinds of loopholes to not follow God’s most Holy day each week…oh Jesus healed on the Sabbath..yes He did..He said it is ok to do good on the Sabath..because, He said He is Lord of the Sabbath..and He alone can establish what is acceptable, and not the Pharisees and priests of the day…He never eliminated the day, just set the ground rules, oh and the disciples grabbed a few heads of grain and ate them..and woe to them the Pharisees accused them of…wow is taking a slice of bread working? Of course not, neither is grabbing a few heads of grain, or a handful of berries off a tree to eat..but this is all excuses by the sunday crowd to denigrate God’s Holy day each week….but thats their free denigrate it..but remember..those who add to or take away from the words of the Bible will have some severe consequences…so you might think of that when you talk about worshipping on the venerable day of the sun, instead of God’s very Holy Sabbath day……it is time to read Jesus words, as they form the New Covenant..Matthew, Mark, Luke and John…that spells out the New Covenant. When Jesus died on the cross and shed his blood, that sealed the New changes after that…the Commandments were in effect then (all of them, including the fourth) with no change indicated. the deal was signed, sealed and delivered as a legal binding contract, between God and mankind….so no changes after that date…so why can’t people just follow His words, instead of following the false teachings of satan the deceiver? Anyway remember the sun god is not the way to eternal life…you have to follow the Son of God to gain eternal life (John 14 6)

          • Steve says:

            I think Jim, the reason Christians began gathering on Sundays was to avoid being killed in the earlier days. Their enemies knew they were gathering on Saturday, so they changed it to Sunday in order to stay alive.
            It reminds me of David when he was being sought by Saul and he ate the consecrated bread. God’s more concerned about our inner hearts than He is about the days we observe or the food we eat.
            Obeying the Sabath is simple, but letting go of a hardened heart is very painful, yet amazingly rewarding!

  8. Steve says:

    Don’t forget the greatest 2 commands. Love your God with all your heart and soul and love your neighbour as yourself. This is why the Church of Philadelphis has an open door that nobody can shut. TJ, you might want to listen up!

    • Steve says:

      But at the same time, love hates evil. So without love, someone cannot truly hate evil, can they?

    • Tj Freezn says:

      //Mark Hughes says:
      December 10, 2011 at 8:21 am
      Philadelphia is Greek for ‘brotherly love’.//

      //Tj Freezn says:
      December 11, 2011 at 10:32 pm
      That I was aware of.
      Although if we’re going to take the coincidental meaning of names into account, we should be fair and do the same with the other 6 churches’ cities.
      (just to see if the names were coincidence or not with Jesus’ Revelation messages to them)//

      Please don’t assume that I wasn’t fully listening, because I was.
      Otherwise I would not be responding the way I am.

      So, again, the reason for Philadelphia’s open door by Jesus, was because they persisted in habitually living saintly lives as saints, and exerting church discipline on those who chose to live habitually sinning lives as saints.

      • Steve says:

        I agree TJ, but names in the Bible are always put there for a reason. Of course the Church of Philadelphia lived saintly lives, so did Ephesus except for one thing, they left their first love or the love they had at first. They deserted Christ even though they were doing many good deeds.
        I’m not the most loving human on earth, but I want God to put His love in me where I don’t have it. Man that love is GOOD!

        • Mark Hughes says:

          The names of the cities in scripture always have meanings to the personality of the city. The 7 churches of Asia Minor are as follows. You can do whatever you want with the information. It was not my point in the first place.

          Ephesus =” permitted”
          Smyrna =” myrrh”
          Pergamos =” height or elevation”
          Thyatira =” odour of affliction”
          Sardis =” red ones”
          Philadelphia =” brotherly love”
          Laodicea =” justice of the people”

          • Tj Freezn says:

            I am glad that you looked this up, Mr. Hughes.
            This means that at least the teacher is teachable, which is an especially endearing trait when the teacher is supposed to set the example.
            (otherwise, children are never used by God to teach their parents)

            I appreciate this.
            I intend to check out your results later today.

  9. Sally Y says:

    Jim with regards to the keeping of the sabbath day. This was strictly for the Jews. It was part of God’s plan to distinguish them as God’s special people who would have the honour of bringing the Messiah to the rest of us in the world.See Exodus 31:12-17 The Gentiles were never instructed to keep the sabbath, just to set aside one day of the week as a day of rest to worship God. It could be any day of the week as long as it was the 7th day from the same weekday of the following week. For the most part the church has chosen Sunday as it’s day of worship. Romans 10:4 says that “Christ is the end of the law.” There is a distinction between Jews and Gentiles but we are all working towards becoming the “one new man in Christ” that Ephesians 2:15 speaks about.
    As Christians we can get so wrapped up in debating the details of our faith that we forget to really love one another as brothers and sisters in Christ…I think that this is the “religious spirit” at it’s best.
    We need to come to that place where as Big Daddy Weave says in his song “fields of grace “a place when religion finally dies”. In these last days, we will really need to be loving on another and begin to prepare on how we can help one another when the dark times finally do hit us. Just a thought!

  10. Mark Hughes says:

    We are a little off topic here and I am not going to allow anyone with a pet peeve hobby horse to high jack the thread.

    However, there is a good lesson here. When people put themselves under the law they fall back into the trap of the pharisees – condemning and judging others for not following the law to the letter. It is the very reason Paul said that the law brings death not life. James 2:10 says, “For whoever shall keep the whole law, and yet stumble in one point, he is guilty of all.”

    I hope our friend never makes the mistake of doing any work on Saturday because Ex 31:15 says “Work shall be done for six days, but the seventh is the Sabbath of rest, holy to the LORD. Whoever does any work on the Sabbath day, he shall surely be put to death.”

    Romans 8:2 “For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death.”

    • Tj Freezn says:

      I would respond to that person you are referring to, but I have been discerning that his motives are off, so his messages are flawed.
      (he may or may not be correct about Saturdays and/or Sundays and/or any other day of the week, but that is irrelevant because God takes issue with outward appearances of righteousness when the inner is not)

  11. Sally Y says:

    Good point Pastor Mark! I for one am truly thankful that we are no longer under the law, as women seemed to have some really tough ones to follow. We are so blessed that Jesus came to set us free!

  12. James Slyk says:

    One thing that is important to remember is a frame of timeline. When the 6th seal is broken, it states that the sun will become darkened like sackcloth, the moon will not give its light. If you cross-reference with the signs Jesus gives in Matthew, Mark and Luke, where the sun becomes darkened and the moon blood red is the sign of Jesus returning and the Rapture. A bit later in Revelation after the sixth seal is broken, John, sees a vast multitude and asks who these are. It states these are they who have come out of the Great Tribulation, in other words the Raptured. So what is imperative here is to understand that, while many Christians keep looking for His return, the other 5 seals have already been opened.
    This will be part of my upcoming book (still doing a lot of research to get my t’s crossed and my I’s dotted) called “The Cosmic Game”, paralleling sport with Christianity.

  13. Tracie says:

    I’m sorry, but the sabbath is not strictly for the Jews. You need to get your terminology correct. This law was given to ALL 12 TRIBES AND THOSE WHO SOJOURNED AMONG THEM. Jew wasn’t even a name at the time it was given. It is also given for FOREVER. God doesn’t change His mind, but the Catholic church tried to make it sound that way. Read your history!

  14. Betty says:

    This Revelation Revolution, shows us more, of who God really is, so powerful and at the same time,He loves us so much, so for those that are ready to meet Jesus, it is interesting and scary for those that are not ready to meet Him.

    But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.-2 Corinthians 3:18.

    Keep your eyes on Jesus. While it may sound impractical, it is the most powerful thing you can do, and Jesus will cause you to reign over every storm in your life! by J.P.

  15. Steve says:

    Well, I’m just going to come out and say what I really believe about the rapture and great tribulation.
    I used to believe what you do, Pastor Mark, but certain things changed my mind.
    I had a dream for one, where Jesus was taking His saints before the great tribulation.
    I don’t believe we will never see an ounce of persecution or trouble though. Because I had another dream where we were all being put through a huge storm. A storm that was causing people’s vehicles to be destroyed. The dream made me feel really heavy in my soul. When I saw the vehicles being obliterated, it made me sick because they were people’s way out of the storm.
    I also had a dream of many Christians in a library. A huge earthquake shook the library and sent books and bookshelves toppling onto almost everyone crushing them. They were dying but the people who didn’t get hit by the books(there weren’t very many) were pulling the books off of them and saving their lives.
    I believe this means something is going to shake the Christian world and send all the doctrines and books that teach doctrines not of Christ onto the people who’ve been following them. It will be debilitating for them because everything they trusted in that wasn’t Christ is going to crush their spirits. It will be so hard for them to start putting their trust souly in Christ.
    Jesus warned us about the seven wise virgins and the seven foolish ones. The ones with the oil in their lamps were ready for the bridegroom. The foolish ones didn’t have oil. They went out to purchase but there wasn’t enough time.
    That’s why we need to take up our cross. In order to get riches refined by fire.
    Don’t get mad at me for saying this. I’m just telling what God has shown me and what I have felt burning in my soul.

    • Jeff says:

      Follow link to Sask Premier Brad Wall’s Christmas Message. Leadership to be proud of! A believer who does not buy into the politically correct world of removing Jesus!

    • Mark Hughes says:

      I don’t have the foggiest notion of what all that means concerning the rapture. At any rate, you cannot base doctrine on a dream. That’s what the bible is for.

      • Steve says:

        Well the Bible does say young men will dream dreams and old men will see visions. By looking at the Bible, you can come up with either or. Like Jeff said, there’s a billion different theories. I’m just speaking what the Lord showed me.
        Here, I’ll speak some verses that I believe refer to the rapture. The verse in Matthew 5:13 you are the salt of the earth but if salt has lost it’s taste, how can it’s saltness be restored? It is not good for anything any longer but to be thrown out and trodden underfoot by men.
        Yeah I know, just wait. That verse goes with the next verses.
        Revelation 10:11 and 11:1-2 says, then they said to me, you are to make a fresh prophecy concerning many peoples and nations and languages and kings.
        A reed was then given to me like a staff, and I was told; rise up and measure the sanctuary of God and the altar and number those who worship there.
        But leave out of your measuring the court outside the sanctuary of God; omit that, for it is given over to the gentiles and they will trample the holy city underfoot for 42 months.
        Ok, I believe this is a prophecy about the rapture. Those in the inner sanctuary are going to be taken up with Christ. They are the salt of the earth. But those who have become unsalty in the outer courts will be left behind for 3 and a half years during the tribulation. They will have a chance to redeem themselves only by going through the tribulation.
        This why I believe when it says two will be in the fields and one will be taken, the other left behind, it’s talking about people in the ministry field.
        The Bible says in the last days people will not put up with sound doctrine. It’s talking about Christians, not the world. It also says even the elect will be decieved if that were possible.
        The other two dreams I had were warnings God gave me about things that are coming and in order to be strong in them, we need to put our full trust in Christ and be wary of things that take our attention off of Him. Things that are supposedly godly but are really there to secretly and sinisterly put our eyes on ourselves instead of Christ.
        I have no beef with you Pastor Mark. I love you. You’re my brother in Christ.
        If what I’m saying is from God then should I keep it to myself? I’m not speaking any heresies or false doctrines. I’m telling the body of Christ to make sure they are not being decieved in any way. Isn’t that what love is all about?

  16. Jeff says:

    Road map please!!! All these detours are getting hard to follow!!! Is this a blog or a chat room? You are behaving like children with your constant bickering and disagreeing! No wonder there are 1000’s of different denominations…none of you can agree about anything! God is bigger than all of this! You are known by your fruit…and right now, none of you are wooing anyone into the orchard! I feel so sorry for anyone who is not a believer but might be reading any of these entries. You have just reinforced the hypocritical, legalistic, fundamental, fanatical attitude that most non-church people think about “Christians”.

    Jim, if you don’t agree with Sunday worship, find a church that observes the Old Testament Sabbath and move on.

    T.J., if you know everything…why are you not the lead pastor of a church?

    Steve, I believe that God reveals things to people in all sorts of ways for all different reasons. I have read numerous versions of pre & post rapture from all sorts of theologians. Bottom line…I don’t know what to believe! And I am comfortable saying that! Unlike most “Christians”, I DON’T understand everything in the Bible and I DON’T have all the answers. But I do know that the moment I accepted Jesus Christ as my personal Lord & Savior, I was guaranteed
    eternal salvation. PERIOD! END OF STORY!

    Turn off your computers for awhile and get out and shine the light of Jesus with some good works in your community over this Christmas season!

    p.s.:to Pastor Mark & family and everyone at COTR…Merry Christmas & God Bless in 2012!

    • Mark Hughes says:

      Thank you Jeff. And Merry Christmas to you and yours.

    • Tj Freezn says:


      you have an arrogant and bitter attitude.

      I do not know everything.
      But neither do you or pastor Mark.
      In fact, in some things, you know more than I do regarding God’s Word and in other things I know more than you do regarding His Word.
      But whoever knows the most as a non-divine human, still does not everything.

      And technically, Yashua (aka Jesus) was born in September, definitely not in our winter (which is also Judah’s winter season).

      I will add that God has used me to do more and greater good works for others, directly, than you have allowed Him to do through you.

      But that does not matter in the greater scheme of things.

      Besides, you are extremely off-topic now.

  17. Sally Y says:

    I understand that blogs are for getting your message out there and one should try to keep on topic but I rather enjoy a healthy debate; even if there are many different opinions about such things like what day should be called the sabbath and when will the rapture occur. You never know when someone might see something in a different light.
    In my own experience as one who had worldly/communistic/ socialistic/occultic tendencies before I became a Christian, I would adamant about my points of views. Thank God, He allowed Christians in my life who would challenge my belief systms and in time the penny dropped and with the help of the Holy Spirit I saw the light. It is possible that as Jeff says we will get into the Word of God and search out these things for ourselves! I look at it this way as long as we are learning and growing there is hope for us yet!

  18. Steve says:

    I have no guilt for what I said. I would have felt guilty had I not. God speaks to us so we will share it and that’s what I did.

  19. JLynn says:

    It is no wonder that non believers shake their heads sometimes at Christians. We cannot even agree on our own bible. I love watching COTR and listening to Pastor Mark as I do my own Pastor at our church. I try not to get caught up in the theology but rather do what Jesus has asked us to do each day, Love one another and don’t worry about tomorrow. No one can predict how the future will play out exactly. And Pastor Mark is right, we spend too much time focusing on events yet to happen when a world of suffering and pain is happening right before our eyes that we should as Christians be doing what we can.

  20. Tracie says:

    I just wanted to say that I agree with most of the article. There was one part where you said we live in a dispensation of grace. What exactly do you mean by that? Yes I agree with focusing on things going on with the pain and suffering of this world, but aren’t we told to keep our minds on the things above while doing this? Don’t we need to know the events in Revelation as it will apply directly to us b/c we may be here for the great tribulation? If you believe in the pre-trib rapture, like I once did, but couldn’t make it fit together and no where could I get any definitive answers, I then began to think I might be seeing things wrong from what I was taught. Our messiah is Jewish and kept sabbath and all the law and He said not one jot or tittle shall pass until heaven and earth have passed. Has that happened yet? NO! That whole “I’m no longer under the law thing” is a rather scary place to be. Jesus/Yahshua didn’t say that and you need to be careful what words you are speaking. He fulfilled the law by going even further with it by telling us to love our enemies and if a man hates in his heart he has committed murder. This doesn’t sound like it’s done away with. In fact, He is the sacrifice. If the law is done away with, we don’t need a sacrifice for our sin. Scripture states clearly that sin is transgression of the law. 1 John 3:4. This is not bondage. God has hever put us under bondage, that we have easily mastered on our own. The law was given to get us out of our sin and bondage. It was never given for salvation, either. Salvation has always been through faith. Read Hebrews and it will tell you that. Don’t mistake the law for bondage~!

  21. Evelyn Bennett says:

    This blog entry ties in with the Closet Christian. Are we ready to be taken? Will we be strong enough not to succumb to the ways of the enemy. If we are not strong to cope with life and death situations this will surely tell if you or I are able to persevere.

  22. Wade says:

    Romans 3:20
    Therefore by the deeds of the law no flesh will be justified in His sight, for by the law is the knowledge of sin.

    Romans 6:14
    For sin shall not have dominion over you, for you are not under law but under grace.

    Romans 7:6-7
    But now we have been delivered from the law, having died to what we were held by, so that we should serve in the newness of the Spirit and not in the oldness of the letter. What shall we say then? Is the law sin? Certainly not! On the contrary, I would not have known sin except through the law. For I would not have known covetousness unless the law had said, “You shall not covet.”

    Romans 6:15
    What then? Shall we sin because we are not under law but under grace? Certainly not!

    Being under grace does not give anyone the right to live in sin because the Bible is very clear what happens to a christian that walks away from Jesus and lives in sin.

    Galatians 5:16-21
    I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.
    Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.

    Hebrews 6:4-6
    For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted the heavenly gift, and have become partakers of the Holy Spirit, and have tasted the good word of God and the powers of the age to come, if they fall away, to renew them again to repentance, since they crucify again for themselves the Son of God, and put Him to an open shame.

    Hebrews 10:26-30
    For if we sin willfully after we have received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a certain fearful expectation of judgment, and fiery indignation which will devour the adversaries. Anyone who has rejected Moses’ law dies without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. Of how much worse punishment, do you suppose, will he be thought worthy who has trampled the Son of God underfoot, counted the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified a common thing, and insulted the Spirit of grace? For we know Him who said, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,”says the Lord. And again, “The LORD will judge His people.”

    2 Peter 2:20-22
    For if, after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and overcome, the latter end is worse for them than the beginning. For it would have been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than having known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered to them. But it has happened to them according to the true proverb: “A dog returns to his own vomit,” and, “a sow, having washed, to her wallowing in the mire.”

    If we walk away from Jesus then we must repent and return to Jesus while we still can like the prodigal son who was with the father and then lived a sinful life but then returned to the father.

    Luke 15:24
    for this my son was dead and is alive AGAIN; he was lost and now is found.
    Luke 15:32
    It was right that we should make merry and be glad, for your brother was dead and is alive AGAIN, and was lost and is found.

    The law was given to show us what sin is, and to show us how far short we fall of the glory of GOD. The law was not given to make us self righteous and think that we have a better chance of salvation by keeping the law or the commandments or the Sabbath. Not one of us is perfect enough to keep the law, the commandments or the Sabbath.
    Now under grace the Lord has changed the rules about how to treat others who sin, such as the woman who is caught in adultery. Under the law she would be stoned to death but under grace Jesus says: “He who is without sin among you, let him throw a stone at her first.” This does not mean that we have to tolerate adulterous life styles but that under grace we deal with them differently.

    Matthew 5:27
    You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart.
    In other words, NO one can keep the law perfectly.
    TRYING to keep the commandments and the Sabbath will bring earthly blessings but not salvation. AGAIN this does not mean we can live in sinful life styles and remain saved but instead by having faith in Jesus our works will show and we will try to keep the commandments and when we fail we confess our sins to Jesus.

    We have to remember that we are saved by grace through faith, and if our works don’t show then it is because our faith is falling and instead of trying to do more works to try to be saved, we should repent from losing faith and put our faith back in Jesus so that our works will begin to show and our life will bring forth fruit.
    Works cannot save us nor can they keep us saved.
    Salvation is entirely by grace through faith and if we walk in the Spirit then we will not fulfill the lust of the flesh but instead we will live a life producing good works because we are living for Jesus.

    Faith produces works but works do not produce faith.

    Just concentrating on good works can take our eyes off of Jesus like the church of Ephesus did, and can make us self righteous and merely religious.

    Matthew 5:48
    Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect.

    NOT one of us can even get close to keeping this command, so therefore salvation is through Jesus Christ and Him alone. Jesus is the only One who can set us free from the bondage of sin.

    John 8:36
    Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed.

    Ephesians 2:8-10
    For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.

    1 John 1:9
    If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

    Jude 1:21
    keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life.

    The only way we can remain faithful is by confessing our sins to the Lord Jesus Christ and having a relationship with Him and staying focused on Jesus.

    The book of Revelation is difficult to understand in certain areas but the bible is clear on when Jesus returns for the resurrection and rapture. As clear as salvation itself. If there is any confusion about this then we know who the author of confusion is because God is not the author of confusion. 1 Corinthians 14:33

    2 Peter 1:20
    knowing this first, that no prophecy of Scripture is of any private interpretation.

    May the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. AMEN.


  23. Steve says:

    I just want to say that I don’t expect anyone to agree with what I said about the rapture. It is not something to make someone a Christian or break them. And if someone believes in a coming of the Lord before the great tribulation or after, then they are entitled. I just spoke from the heart.
    If my message sounded like I was telling people to go by works then they misunderstood. My message was that we allow Christ to change our hearts.
    The Bible also says He hides things from the wise and learned and reveals them to the little children. So if we are being led by Christ as little children willing to change, and be moulded by Him then Christ will open our eyes to things we normally wouldn’t see.
    When Christ came the first time, nobody thought He would come the way He did even though the scriptures were there and seemed to be telling a different story.

  24. Tj Freezn says:

    I’ve been away from the website for the past few days.

    I will check up on any responses since then, sometime this weekend.

    In the meantime:

    The following is regarding the book of Revelation (including “Page 210 says ‘that the book of Revelation is a mythical book that has prophetic characteristics’ so you cannot really understand and comprehend what that book says” which implies that chapters 17 & 18 are not referring to them)…

    //Eye-Opening Reality
    The Jesuits are tampering with Spirit of Prophecy books in China!

    “See, my lord, from this room — from this room I govern not only Paris, but China; not only China, but the whole world, without any one knowing how ‘tis managed.”

    -Andrew Steinmetz, History of the Jesuits volume 1, p.107. (Philadelphia: Lea and Blanchard, 1848).//

  25. Stanley Frodisham prophecy 1965 says:

    When I visit My people in mighty revival power, it is to prepare
    them for the darkness ahead. With the Glory shall come great
    darkness, for the Glory is to prepare My people for the darkness. I
    will enable My people to go through the darkness because of the
    visitation of My Spirit. Take heed to yourselves lest you be puffed
    up and think that you have arrived. Many shall be puffed up as in
    the olden days, for then, many received My message but they did
    not continue in it. Did I anoint Jehu? Yet the things that I desired
    were not accomplished in his life. Listen to the messengers, but
    do not hold men’s persons in admiration or adulation. For many
    whom I shall anoint mightily with signs and miracles shall become
    lifted up and shall fall by the wayside. I do not this willingly for I
    have made provision that they might stand. I call many into this
    ministry and equip them, but remember that many shall fall. They
    shall be like bright lights and the people shall delight in them. But
    they shall be taken over by deceiving spirits and shall lead many
    of My people astray. Hearken diligently concerning these things,
    for in the last days shall come seducing spirits. They shall turn
    many of My anointed ones away, many shall fall through diverse
    lusts and because of ‘sin abounding’.

  26. Sally Y says:

    Yes, I can definitely see that many have begun to fall away from the faith as I Timothy 4:1 says. In my own circle of friends I have seen people whom I would have thought would have stood the test of time are now falling away. It grieves my heart to see this happen. I have seen many Christians accept the deceiving spirit of homosexuality as being “right” and have continued on in the churches that teaches is it ok and “normal”. People would rather receive general approval than take a stand for truth and righteousness. We shall see more and more of this happens as the words in Revelation unfolds before us.

  27. Stanley Frodisham prophecy 1965 says:

    I warn you to search the Scriptures diligently concerning these last days, for the things that are written shall indeed be made manifest. There shall come deceivers among My people in increasing number, who shall speak forth the truth and shall gain the favor of the people, for the people shall examine the Scriptures and say, “What these men say is true.” Then when they have gained the hearts of the people, then and then only shall they bring out these wrong doctrines. Therefore, I say that you should not give your hearts to men, nor hold people’s persons in admiration. For by these very persons shall Satan enter into My people. Watch for seducers (1 Timothy 3:13). Do you think a seducer will brandish a new heresy and flaunt it before the people? He will speak the words of righteousness and truth and will appear as a minister of light, declaring the Word. The people’s hearts shall be won; they will bring out their doctrines, and the people shall be deceived. The people shall say, “Did he not speak thus and thus? And did we not examine it from the Word? Therefore he is a minister of righteousness. That he has now spoken we do not see in the Word, but it must be right, for the other things he spoke were true.”

    Be not deceived, for the deceiver will first work to gain the hearts of many and then shall bring forth his insidious doctrines. You cannot discern those who are of Me and those who are not of Me when they start to preach. But seek Me constantly, and then when these doctrines are brought out, you shall have a witness in your heart that these are not of Me. Fear not, for I have warned you. Many will be deceived, but if you walk in holiness and uprightness before the Lord, your eyes shall be opened, and the Lord will protect you. If you will constantly look unto the Lord, you will know when the doctrine changes, and you will not be brought into it. If your heart is right, I will keep you, and if you will look constantly to Me, I will uphold you.

    The minister of righteousness shall be on this wise: his life shall agree with the Word, and his lips shall give forth that which is wholly true, and it will be no mixture. When the mixture appears, then you will know he is not a minister of righteousness. The deceivers speak first the truth and then error to cover their own sins, which they love. Therefore, I exhort and command you to study the Scriptures relative to seducing spirits, for this is one of the great dangers of these last days.

    I desire you to be firmly established in My Word, and not in the personalities of men, that you will not be moved as so many shall be moved. I would keep you in the paths of righteousness. Take heed to yourselves, and follow not the seducing spirits that are already manifesting themselves. Diligently inquire of Me when you hear something that you have not seen in the Word, and do not hold people’s persons in admiration, for it is by this very method that Satan will hold many of My people.

  28. rick says:

    i like listening to brave christians talk about the tribulation. a time when the destruction and mayhem is world wide. many christians feel that the cross was not enough for salvation and that martyrdom is a nessasary part of Gods plan. anyone with a cursory read of matt 24 can easily see that noone knows the day or hour of jesus return. yet we do for the bible breaks down the tribulation into the number of days it will occur.1260 from midpoint of tribulation x2 gives full length to the day.
    In matt 24 the description of the events going on, same as before the flood , it really doesnt sound like the world is in any upheaval. people arent expecting jesus to return it says it will come as a surprise. Since we do know when Jesus will return after the the days of the tribulation 1260 from midpoint, we know to the day, of his return. matt 24 says angels dont know, jesus doesnt know only the father knows. so either jesus and the angels dont do math or don’t read the bible to know the days length of the tribulation and the day it says he will return, or his return is at a different time that only the father knows, an unexpected day.

  29. Steve says:

    I believe that the cross was totally enough for our salvation and that’s why we have our own crosses to bear, each one of us.
    I also believe there is a spiritual abomination of desolation being set up in churches right now. It is the idea that we no longer need to take up our cross for Christ. That would be the daily sacrifice that all of us Christians are to become. The abomination that causes desolation is set up and takes away the daily sacrifice. It becomes all about us and our wellbeing, our prosperity, our greed(Under a holy version that doesn’t seem greedy, but is).
    We start to beat up the people who aren’t as strong, drunk on our own self sufficiency because that is what it becomes all about, our own strength.
    When the system of the beast comes in, it will seem like everything being taught in most churches already. How else will the elect be decieved?

  30. Flo says:

    Pastor Mark,
    There is no doubt that you annointed by God, your ability explain the wisdom of God and put it into terms that the average person can understand is phenomenal! I was awed and amazed with how you were able to unlock the mystery of Revelation (you made something that had seemed so intimidating and complicated to me, understandable). Love the way with your sermons you teach, but you with humour, and in a way that people can apply it to their lives. Pastor Mark you’re REAL!! You don’t sugar coat things, I like that! Your gifting for preaching and your style and delivery is right up there among greats such as Creflo Dollar, Joyce Meyer, and TD Jakes. I love your messages (they’re never boring, they leave me hungering for more, remembering them and applying them to my life), they feed my soul!!!

  31. Marcella says:

    Steve, can we discuss this off line and meet at the church to help with further understanding.

  32. Jed says:

    Sin is transgression of the law (Apostle John)..there are ten commandments to God’s law, so transgression of any one of them is sin..for example if you do not keep the fourth commandment “remember the Sabbath day to keep it Holy” you are sinning every week..kind of puts salvation in jeopardy doesn’t it….as Paul said “work out your salvation with fear and trembling!

  33. James Slyk says:

    OK, finished the manuscript for the book roughly around 1:00AM Saturday night. Pastor Mark is in town here Sunday night so I hope to be able to give him a copy to proof read and edit (maybe he might want to co-author it, who knows?)and hope he can help out somehow for getting it published. Got him an Xmas gift too to give him, a t-shirt that reads “Jesus loves you but I’m his favorite”. Maybe he’ll wear it during his sermons?

  34. Steve says:

    I want to apologise to you Pastor Mark if I said anything on here that was out of an angry heart. I know that I have been completely frustrated with many churches and the lack of discernment.
    Truthfully, I only wanted to see freedom in the church.
    I am not very wise sometimes in how I go about getting my points across. I am so glad that God graciously forgives me as I forgive all those who’ve sinned against me.
    I am pumped because God is going to do big things SOON! God bless!

  35. Steve says:

    I also want to tell you Pastor Mark that I had a dream. I dreamt I was riding by your house and decided to throw a big rock on your front lawn, but this rock rolled into your front door and dinged the crap out of it. You were mad and I took off because I didn’t want to be caught. Later I came back and offered to fix your door and admitted it was me. You were nice about it and let me fix it. I don’t know if God’s trying to tell me something, but I would like to again say sorry if this is God showing me anything I’ve said on here that may have done damage when I only wanted to throw a rock on your lawn. Hey, at least I’m honest. God bless you. And God has shown me that arguing is not of Christ, so I will shut up even if I don’t agree.

  36. Steve says:

    One more thing. God has shown me my heart. God has shown me that I have lacked His grace for the church. I repent and I am sorry.
    The dreams were real. I believe something very awful is coming. God loves His church so much! He wants us to be ready in our hearts. He wants us to turn from any sin that has captivated our hearts. He wants to be our everything so we will not fall when the storm comes.
    God forced me to see my lack of grace and love because He really wants His church to be safe when all this starts to take place. He doesn’t want any of us to fall away. I believe this could be what thessalonians speaks about, the great falling away.
    I feel His Spirit, He wants to protect His people. God bless.

  37. Lee says:

    We need to remember that Christians through the last 2000 years have all awaited/await Christ’s return; THAT understanding we (varied Christian denominations) have in common. But ‘Rapture’ is a concept and the word is not in the Scriptures.
    I think that we need to remember some context:
    -that Revelation was understood by the early Christians as being written to the Christians persecuted by Nero.
    -Apocryphal teaching (like Revelation) was common in the society that birthed early Christianity.
    – The concept of end times outlined above, has developed in the last 250 years. The idea of ‘dispensation’ and ‘ages’ and the concept of predictable sequences came about in the 1750’s to 1850s, (in England) as a result of a pastor’s interpretation of a girl’s dream.

    Understanding the context of Revelation, rather than throwing me off course, has increased the value of Revelation to me; Revelation is a reminder of God’s prevailing power to bring good out of bad, to overcome. IT IS HOPE.

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