Spickard's Signs of the Times

Increase Your Faith...Know the Signs of the Times

Who Am I ? What Am I ?

         Joseph Spickard 

 

      Who  Am  I? 

 

Well, really no one. I am obscure and unknown. I am not the son of a U.S. Senator or a member of a fraternal order such as Freemasonry, Elks, Oddfellows, or Knights of Columbus or Knights of Malta (although I have known a few decent and honorable people who are fraternal order members of different ilks) .  Nor I am an offspring of what the Bible calls "The Rich Men," which is spoken of in the Scriptures as having immense power as a result of their wealth and connection with Satanic activities. But that puts me in good stead with those of a godly calling as recorded in the Bible. I am as the Apostle Paul told the Corinthians, "not many wise men... after the flesh, not... mighty, not... noble, are called (of God to serve Him)" (1 Corinthians 1:26).

                                 The birth of Christ was remarkably obscure. It was not heralded as what we might think would be publicized by press and media today. His birth and its significance was only known to little more than a handful of people ! Christ's mother Mary, her cousin Elizabeth, and her husband Zacharias, Joseph, and the three Magi were really the only people who knew for certainty what the great event of the birth of the Messiah was. Throw in a few nearby surprised shepherds as witnesses that were probably too fearful of what others may think to tell to a great extent how that they saw Angels and heard their praises to God, and one crazy, paranoid, syphilitic, psychotic King Herod, and there you have it ! No, there was no CNN nor ABC there that day... yet this obscure event in history is observed by over a  billion people, and respected by another 5 1/2 billion, every December as Christmas Day.

Christ's life was really somewhat obscure. He ministered for just over three years in a country where there were two to three million inhabitants. He probably had been heard of by about half of them and seen in person by perhaps no more that 10% of the population. Of his twelve disciples, six of them were related to him as first cousins, so there was no wide diversity nor notoriety there. At His death, again, only a handful of followers witnessed it. All told, with all the miracles and ministry that Jesus demonstrated in over three years, only 500 people were on hand to see His Ascension and witness His Resurrected Person from the dead. It was not until the 4th Century that Christ gained "media or celebrity status," and the widespread acknowledgment and acceptance of Who He was. This acceptance was prophesied, however, as Isaiah predicted that "in....His Name (authority) shall the Gentiles trust" (Matthew 12:21; Isaiah 42:5, Septuagint reading).

                                                      Thus, having established that obscurity is no obstacle with the Purposes of God, it is of little consequence that one is not commended by those of influence who make up the existing Order, or Cosmos.

                             
                                   WHAT   AM    I   ?  


I am just an individual who exercises a spiritual gift. Anyone who has been placed into the Body of Christ by the Holy Spirit can be a recipient of spiritual gifts (Ephesians 4:8 ; Romans 12:6; 1:11; 1 Corinthians 12:4, 7). Indeed, the Apostle Paul commanded the Corinthian Church to desire spiritual gifts, especially that they might prophesy (1 Cor. 14:1). To prophesy is not necessarily to make predictions, but to reveal the Divine Mind and Will of God, to comfort and edify those that believe in and love God.

                                                                            
                                                         AN  INTERPRETER....


"If  there  be  a  Messenger  with  him,  an  interpreter,  one  among  a  thousand,  to  shew  unto  men  God's  uprightness" - Job 33:23.

What is an interpreter ? It is one who makes things plain and clear. Perhaps someone has a message for you but he speaks in such a way or language that you cannot understand. But if there is an interpreter, he can cause you to understand, for he can put into  your perspective or language, an understanding. If we are interpreters, we have to know and understand both man's and God's perspectives, views, and language.... The burden upon my heart, is to be an Interpreter.

Despite having the Bible and the plethora of modern scripture translations we do not understand God's speaking to us all that well. Perhaps we do not live in close enough fellowship with God, or seek the Holy Spirit to give us a proper application of God's Word. We may be like the Ethiopian Eunuch as recorded in Acts 8. We need a Philip to come along and help us to understand what we are trying to comprehend and understand. Philip was an Interpreter for God. He had just made plain to the people of Samaria the plan of salvation by "preaching Christ unto them."  As a result, there was "great joy in that city" (Acts 8:8). And after Philip made plain the Way of Salvation to the Ethiopian dignitary, the scripture reads that the Dignitary "went on his way, rejoicing."

In spite of celebrity Preachers and their media cult status, there are few, if any, that have any real ability... especially the ability to preach as Sent from God. In Luke 4:14, the King James Version reads that "Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit into Galilee: and there went out a fame of Him throughout all the region round about."  The Original New Testament translation paraphrases this some, and captures a little better understanding, or perspective, or interpretation for us. It reads the same verse as: " Jesus returned to Galilee as a powerful Preacher, and was the talk of the whole district. When He taught in their Synagogues, everyone applauded Him." The margin notes in the Original New Testament translation adds that the Hebrew equivalent of "Bravo" was used by the Congregation at the end of a good Preacher's discourse.

                   ...Have you heard any "Bravos" used by church congregations lately ? ...

One reason that Christ was so heralded was that He was able to make the things of God and eternity, real and plain, to men. This is why Peter exclaimed to Christ, " Lord, to whom shall we go ? You have the words of eternal life" ( John 6:68). John said of Christ, that He came,..." and hath given us an understanding..." (1 John 5:20). 
                                   
The need for interpreters is spoken of in Job 33:14: "For God speaketh once, yea twice, yet man perceives it not." Jesus said that man should not live by bread alone, "but  by  every  word  that  proceeds (this is present tense) out of  the  mouth  of  God" (Matthew 4:4). God is not Mute. God is still speaking. Yet, God speaks but man does not perceive nor understand His Voice. God has spoken in every Age. Again, the Bible says that God is speaking, but man perceives it not.

Why ?....

              
Because there is such a dearth of Interpreters.....

But thanks be unto God, we have the greatest Interpreter of All, Jesus Christ, who is the Author and Finisher of our Faith. Man had transgressed against God and had no remedy to return to God's Fellowship,... our Eden... But God sent His Son to interpret His Great Love for us and now through His Grace, through His Son, we can experience Redemption and Fellowship with our Heavenly Father. We too, can be Interpreters, and can share this Redemption by interpreting God's Love to others that we have experienced through Christ, "Who was truly foreordained before the Foundation of the World, but was made Manifest in these Last Times for you" ( 1 Peter 1:20). We have not just the testimony of Peter, who was on that Mount of Transfiguration who heard the Voice of Excellent Glory, "This is My Beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased." We also have the "more Sure Word of Prophecy,...a Light that shines in darkness, unto the Daydawn, and the Day Star"  (the Return of Christ, 2 Peter 1:17,19).

This Sure Word of Prophecy is what I am interpreting in the Light of current events in my books and publications and on this website. Will you join me in having an understanding of Prophecy called by Christ, ... "the Signs of the Times,"  or Last Days ? Have a knowledge of the future when others are losing hope ! Your stedfastness in understanding the Signs of the Times will succour not only yourself, but also your Loved Ones, as they note a change in you in facing these uncertain times with peace and serenity.
                                    Would you wish to be anything less ?
 
 
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