A SURE SIGN- THESE ARE THE LAST OF DAYS
Acts 2:17 ‘AND IT SHALL BE IN THE LAST DAYS,’ God says,
‘THAT I WILL POUR FORTH OF MY SPIRIT ON ALL MANKIND;
AND YOUR SONS AND YOUR DAUGHTERS SHALL PROPHESY,
AND YOUR YOUNG MEN SHALL SEE VISIONS,
AND YOUR OLD MEN SHALL DREAM DREAMS;
Christians in every generation have thought that the return of Christ was imminent. That is a pretty good indication of someone’s spiritual condition. Spiritual renewal is generally accompanied by an expectancy of the coming of Jesus Christ, that is a distinct effect of the Holy Spirit upon our hearts. As Peter preached on that great day of visitation in Jerusalem, the outpouring of the Holy Spirit upon all mankind was a clear sign of the beginning of the last days. Included in that Pentecostal outpouring in the streets of that ancient city was a brand new gift from God, this gift was an unknown language enabling each believer to glorify God and communicate with Him on an entirely new level. This gift has been increasing in our world in the last century. J. Rodman Williams was a leader in the Presbyterian Church in the 1960’s and 1970’s. He was baptized in the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in other tongues. Here is something he wrote about this gift and it’s relationship to the last days.
“Speaking in tongues is an eschatological sign. We have earlier observed that speaking in tongues on the Day of Pentecost was both a new and peculiar sign of the coming of the Holy Spirit. But now, and climactically, we may view this further as an eschatological sign- a sign of last things. Let us note this carefully.
Peter focused on the outpouring of the Holy Spirit and declared that this was an event signaling the end times. Peter also saw this outpouring as an event accompanied by certain signs of the end, for just after words about the outpouring of the Spirit, Peter added, “And I will show wonders in the heaven above and signs on the earth beneath, blood, and fire and vapor of smoke.” The “wonders” and “signs” probably refer both to the Day of Pentecost- the sound from heaven like a rushing wind and speaking in tongues- and to certain events yet to come: “the sun shall be turned into darkness and the moon into blood, before the day of Lord comes.” If “signs” includes speaking in tongues, which seems likely, then it is quite possible that this was not only a sign of the Spirit’s coming on the Day of Pentecost but also a sign to signal the final days.”
Wow, speaking in tongues, or praying by the power of the Spirit, is a sign from God that the end of this age is at hand. I have to admit, it has not always been easy to allow the Holy Spirit to have a prominent place in my life and in the life of the church. To the natural man praying in tongues is a waste of time. To many Christians, it is as if this precious gift is rather insignificant. Many will say they believe it is real, but with their actions, show that it is unimportant to them. As we enter into an unusual time of darkness in this fallen world, the light of the Glory of the Lord will shine brightly. This light will shine out of the faces of His sons and daughters as a sign to the lost all around us. The prayer language is an important part of God’s plan in the last days. He said He would speak to this generation with “stammering lips and another tongue”, maybe He will make you a sign to this generation of the nearness of His return.