(Matthew 24:6-7) “You will hear of wars and rumours of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom.”
Hi Brothers and Sisters
Shortly before Midnight on 16th April 1961 President J.F. Kennedy sanctioned an invasion of Cuba by some 1,500 exiles trained and financed by the CIA. The attack was launched from the sea in the Bay of Pigs but turned out to be an ill-fated invasion. The plan was to overthrow Fidel Castro and his revolution. Instead, it turned into a humiliating defeat which pushed Cuba firmly into the arms of the Soviet Union and it was a situation that has soured US-Cuban relations even to this day. The American plan was to sneak ashore virtually unopposed, secure the area, take the airfield and fly in a government-in-exile who would then call for direct US support. The invading force was relying heavily upon a mass uprising in Cuba against Castro and his revolutionaries. Castro became aware of this planned invasion and the Cuban militia were brought into play. The exiles had some air support, but US President John F Kennedy was determined to keep the US involvement a secret and as the initiative turned against the invading force, he backed away from providing further critically needed air cover. At the same time, Fidel Castro took personal charge of the operation, and within only three days the battle was over. America backed the wrong side. Was it to bring liberty and freedom to Cuba? It was potentially a war that could have erupted between the Americans and the Russians.
On the brink of a nuclear exchange
Eighteen months later on October 14 1962 J.F. Kennedy once again was confronted with Russian aggression in the Cuban Missile Crisis. This crisis brought the United States and the Soviet Union to the brink of nuclear conflict. Photographs taken by a high-altitude U-2 spy plane offered incontrovertible evidence that Soviet-made medium-range missiles in Cuba, capable of carrying nuclear warheads, were now stationed 90 miles off the American coastline. Tensions between the United States and the Soviet Union over Cuba had been steadily increasing since the failed April 1961 Bay of Pigs invasion. Two days after the pictures were taken, after being developed and analysed by intelligence officers, they were presented to President Kennedy. During the next two weeks, the United States and the Soviet Union would come as close to nuclear war as they ever had, and a fearful world awaited the outcome.
Today once again are the United States and Russia possibly heading for another Missile crisis over Venezuela on South America’s Northern Coast? This time the stakes are much higher and America is faced with a potential flashpoint in their own backyard and once again the Russians are involved. Mr Maduro, the current socialist dictator of Venezuela, is backed by the Russians. Russia called Mr Maduro the country’s legitimate president and accused the US of trying to usurp power in Venezuela, warning Washington against military intervention. President Tayyip Erdogan said Turkey stood by Mr Maduro. China voiced support for Mr Maduro, saying it opposed outside interference in Venezuela. State oil company PDVSA, which accounts for most of Venezuela’s export earnings, stood by Maduro. A few left-leaning governments in the region, including Cuba and Bolivia, continue to back Mr Maduro. Mexico said it will follow a policy of non-intervention.
Opposing Mr Maduro is Mr Guaido who has proclaimed himself President and has been recognised by the US Government that has said, it would use its “economic and diplomatic power” to restore democracy in Venezuela. No doubt they wanted to do the same thing in Cuba in 1961 and 1962 by going against Castro the Dictator. Numerous right-leaning Latin American governments, including Brazil, Colombia and Argentina, also recognise Mr Guaido. The European Union’s executive called for new elections but declined to explicitly recognise Mr Guaido as president. An EU statement urged authorities to respect his “civil rights, freedom and safety” and allow Venezuelans to freely determine their future. Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez told Mr Guaido in a phone call he supported the legitimacy of the Venezuelan parliament and called for free elections. French President Emmanuel Macron saluted the courage of Venezuelans marching for freedom and called Mr Maduro’s 2018 election victory illegal. A spokesman for British Prime Minister Theresa May said Maduro’s election was neither free nor fair, and expressed support for Mr Guaido as national assembly head. The German government said Venezuela’s parliament had “a special role” to play in securing Venezuela’s “free future”. There are some signs that support for the opposition is expanding beyond its traditional middle- and upper-class areas. Several protests against Mr Maduro have already broken out in working-class neighbourhoods and slums. Some low-ranking military officers have expressed discontent with the government.
King Solomon said; “What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun.“ (Ecclesiastes 1:9) Let’s briefly consider what the Lord Jesus said when He mentioned wars, rumours of wars, nation rising against nation and Kingdom against kingdom.
“You will hear of wars and rumours of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen” Since the time of the Lord Jesus wars have been happening around the world and rumours of wars have been circulating among the nations and historically there have been some terrible wars. Today it is no different but there is no doubt these ‘rumours’ are increasing in frequency and intensity as we see the Second Coming of the Lord Jesus getting closer by the day. As believers in the Lord Jesus we are not to be alarmed by the things we see happening at these potential ‘flashpoints’ occurring globally because they must happen. Yet He goes on to say; “but the end is still to come.” There have been many times in history when people were faced with wars and rumours of wars and thought that the end had come. However, the Lord Jesus said that these rumours of wars and armed conflict would occur right up until his Second Coming.
Nation against nation
He then went on to say that; “Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom.” The world has experienced two world wars being WWI and WWII. In 1945, when the United States dropped two nuclear bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the whole world was launched into the era of nuclear capability and technology. The Lord Jesus spoke about armed conflict on two levels. He spoke about “nation against nation” and the word He uses for nation is the one from which we derive the word “ethnic.” He was saying that within individual nations there would be ethnic wars and this is a very conspicuous mark we see today in many nations and especially in the last century and in today’s world.
Kingdom against kingdom
Then He spoke about “kingdom against Kingdom” designating armed conflict between nations. Also he mentioned in the last days leading up to His Second Coming there would be disease, famine pestilence and earthquakes in various places, and that, on a scale unprecedented in history. In fact He said that if He did not come back the whole world would destroy itself and when you consider the nuclear arsenal today this is a definite possibility. (Matthew 24:21-22) He also called these signs “Birth pains.” (Matthew 24:8) When a woman is pregnant birth pains or contractions will suddenly come upon her and often without any warning. When the contractions increase in frequency and intensity you know the birth of the baby is on the way. However, when they start to come one upon another you know that birth is imminent. This is how things will be just before the birth of the Messianic Millennial Kingdom on earth when the Lord Jesus comes back.
There is more to come!
Possibly President Trump and Vladimir Putin are on a collision course over Venezuela just like John. F. Kennedy and Nikita Khrushchev were facing over Cuba in the 1960’s. Other nations are closing ranks in the Venezuelan scenario. Nations are taking sides. You know most wars have been started by local wars that have drawn other nations into the arena of armed combat and history does have a way of repeating itself as Solomon rightly said. Whether it is Gaza, Lebanon, the Golan Heights, Syria, Iran and Turkey and even North Korea or internal conflict there is no doubt the wars and rumours of wars and conflict within and between nations are a conspicuous feature in today’s world. With Israel back in their own Land after almost 2,000 years of exile as foretold in the writings of the prophets and facing a mounting crisis, with a flashpoint that may well ignite a global war, it is clear that the birth pains are almost coming one upon another today as we see the Day of the LORD approaching. Having said this, the end is not just yet! In these very last days we need to stay tuned in to the word of God because there is more to come!