Long-time readers will know I’m a sucker for end-time prophecies, the subject being of obvious fascination (forecasts of every kind are my avocation). Every time a priest in his wisdom begins a lecture on the topic with “You know, the real End Times is for you when you die”, I (and I suspect many) say, “Yeah, yeah: Get to the good stuff. When is Jesus coming and put an end to this mess?”
Even if you yourself are not yet a believer (all will be in the end), there are definite practical and political consequences to these prophecies and predictions, so they are worth considering. For instance, everybody knows evangelical’s unrequited love for the nation state of Israel is important—and lucrative. Evangelicals believe their undying support of Israel will hurry prophecy along, and hasten their “rapture”.
The “rapture” is complex, but best characterized by the optimistic interpretation of Matthew 24:40 “Then two shall be in the field: one shall be taken, and one shall be left.” Recent events, and the earlier verse “Let him which is on the housetop not come down to take any thing out of his house” and get the heck out of Dodge, prove the sober and realistic interpretation is more likely.
This rapture is not our direct interest, though it is believed by many. The attitude of its holders is relevant, though. If you truly believed this rapture, and acted like you believed it was going to happen shortly, you might not be so keen on getting the wheat planted this year, if you follow me.
A new prediction, growing in numbers of believers, is circulating among Catholics. It is “The Warning” or “The Illumination of Conscience.” I say prediction and not prophecy because I do not think it is a prophecy, a word I’ll reserve for the real deal. An unconditional real prophecy is “But the day of the Lord shall come as a thief, in which the heavens shall pass away with great violence, and the elements shall be melted with heat, and the earth and the works which are in it, shall be burnt up.”
The idea of The Warning is simple: Sometime soon God will illuminate the consciences of all men, and allow them to see themselves as He sees them. This shock will cause many to repent, but most will pass off their vision as caused by a solar flare (yes). At this time, the Antichrist, who is likely here already, begins his work in earnest, work which ushers in the last three and and half years of The Late Great Planet Earth.
Those who claim this is a prophecy are keen to have you believe it, too. The immediate problem is this: the “prophecy” isn’t needed. If God wants to illumine all souls, He can do so, and at any time. Those who are content with their disobedience now won’t “convert” because of this prediction, as it offers them nothing. They may well convert after the illumination, but they don’t need to know it’s coming to experience it for what it is.
They don’t need a boost, I mean. If God Himself, the Lord of all creation, omnipotent, omniscient, omni-everything, tells you, “Dear Reader, you are a sinner and you had better repent now or else!,” and you choose not to, then somebody flogging a book isn’t going to be put your over the edge.
The prophecy just isn’t needed. That it isn’t needed is not proof that it won’t happen. But if it does, you won’t need me, or anybody, telling you what to do about it.
There are books on The Warning. One is by Bruce Cyr: After The Warning to 2038. Specificity in dates is always a yikes! moment. We all know, or should know, that Jesus himself said nobody would know dates.
Here is what the author says:
Ninety-nine point nine percent of the population of the world has no idea what is going down… The newly elected President of the United States has unabashedly changed the way America will do business and is reviving Judeo/Christian values at governmental levels…The Global Elite will orchestrate horrendous events […and…] will use the disguise of a false flag to create another ‘Pearl Harbor’ or ‘9-11’ against Israel first, then the United States of America. They intend to suppress or destroy the Judeo-Christian principles. The city of Jerusalem is the foundation,from the beginning, for the Jewish and Christian faiths. It is an important location for Islam as well…
According to prophecies, they have a plot to take down America and Israel.
Israel first, eh. Judeo-Christian, eh. Israel last, eh. The whole thing is like the Catholic-lite version of Hal Lindsay (who’s 90 and still kicking).
The main book is The Warning: Testimonies and Prophecies of the Illumination of Conscience by Christine Watkins. It’s popular. As of this writing, it’s number 793 on Amazon among all books. Based on blurbs and talks she’s given, she stitches together several private revelations (which no Catholic is obliged to believe) and produces her prophetic tapestry. The details are of interest to specialists only.
(There is also the case of Fr Michel Rodrigue, who makes speeches on this topic, though his bishop does not support him.)
Debating the fine points is not necessary, because, as said, you don’t need to fret whether or not The Warning happens. If it does, we’ll all know. Anyway, we’ve always also known that the sooner you repent, the better. How important The Warning movement becomes is an open question since, as the Brits says, its early days.
For those having more interest on this subject, this post: Antichrist, by Saint Robert Bellarmine, Reviewed. Also see Archbishop Vigano’s letter to Trump, which I believe captures well the spirit of the age.
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