Forerunner, June 1997

God inspired David to write the words of Psalm 19, revealing that the heavens above—commonly called "outer space" today—are a witness to God's tremendous glory: "The heavens declare the glory of God, and the firmament shows His handiwork" (Psalm 19:1). In verse 2 David asserts that the heavens repeat the fact of God's glory every day and every night. All man has to do is look into the starry night sky to know that God exists.

Moses writes something similar in Deuteronomy 10:14: "Indeed heaven and the highest heavens belong to the LORD your God." Outer space is God's domain! Just as on the earth, nothing happens in the vastness of the universe without God's knowledge and approval. As Christians we can have faith in God's supreme sovereignty over all creation, including the uncharted reaches of deep space.

However, we live in a time when the minds and creative energies of man are especially inspired by Satan the deceiver. He has a plan of his own, contrary to God's, that he is trying to work out on the earth. Isaiah quotes him as saying:

I will ascend into heaven; I will exalt my throne above the stars of God; I will also sit on the mount of the congregation on the farthest sides of the north; I will ascend above the heights of the clouds, I will be like the Most High." (Isaiah 14:13-14)

Even though God soundly defeated him in ages past when he attempted this foolhardy coup, his plan remains the same.

He has been conditioning mankind for such an event for years. Except this time, rather than fight God on His turf—the heavens—Satan will wait for God to assault him and his armies here on earth! When that day comes, the Devil will have convinced a large part of mankind that extraterrestrial life exists and is conspiring to destroy mankind and takeover the earth.

The Real ETs

Ironically, extraterrestrial life is determined to destroy mankind, but "fortunately," God by His sovereignty limits them to attempting to make us destroy ourselves. Of course, Satan and his legions of fallen angels are the real aliens in this plot. These beings, who do not live under the earth's surface, as commonly believed, actually dwell unseen on earth and travel through space. Job 1:6-7 shows this plainly:

Now there was a day when the sons of God [angels] came to present themselves before the LORD [in heaven], and Satan also came among them. And the LORD said to Satan, "From where do you come?" So Satan answered the LORD and said, "From going to and fro on the earth, and from walking back and forth on it."

Today's mass media and entertainment pushes the notion that the earth will be taken over by aliens from outer space. In the movie The Arrival, aliens in Third-world countries build power plants to speed up global warming and mankind's self-destruction. In Independence Day, the earth is surrounded by aliens determined to wipe out mankind, but when the nations join forces—it even shows the Arab and Israeli militaries working side-by-side to defeat their common enemy—the aliens are destroyed. In the end, all humanity celebrates a new "Independence Day" together worldwide. Even in the Star Trek saga, a race of half-machine, half-humanoid creatures called the Borg try to assimilate humankind. Other movies and television shows, such as Robin Cook's Invasion, Mars Attacks, The X-Files, The Outer Limits and Dark Skies, have similar story lines.

Our children are also being subjected to mind-conditioning from an early age. Cartoons, which used to emphasize merely competition and violence in a "friendly" way, have now given way to an almost constant barrage of space invaders. Computer and video games are filled with the same violent extraterrestrials, as are comic books. Children, fascinated with science fiction and futurism, are a ready and willing audience and a high-profit target for purveyors of such satanic mind-conditioning. Parents beware!

Stories of alien abductions, unidentified flying objects and unexplained patterns cut in fields (known as "crop circles") are gaining popular acceptance. A nationally syndicated radio talk show, "The Art Bell Show," concerns itself almost exclusively with such mysteries for several hours each night. Without a solid foundation in the truth, it is not surprising that so many believe that aliens are here, have been here or will be here—and they are out to destroy us.

Add to this the common way movie producers show alien craft entering the earth's atmosphere: with clouds and heavenly shows. Independence Day portrayed this phenomenon happening around the globe. Close Encounters used the same effect. Notice how it counterfeits Christ's return:

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. (Matthew 24:30; compare Acts 1:9-11)

What Satan is preparing mankind for is indeed the return of Jesus Christ and the heavenly host. In Revelation 12:7—13:8 the apostle John writes what God revealed to him about the end time. Satan is given power to exercise authority over the earth for three and a half years. His wrath is very great because he knows his time is very short. He must kick his plan into high gear.

What Will Really Happen

Satan's end-time plan, revealed in Revelation 13:11-18, is to establish his false church as the "true" church. Then his false Messiah, the Antichrist, will cause such fear and perform signs in the sight of all that the world will believe he is God. Paul warns the true church of this in II Thessalonians 2:3-4:

Let no one deceive you by any means; for that Day will not come unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition [destruction], who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped, so that he sits in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God.

We should not allow ourselves to be duped by these obvious counterfeits of the truth because we know what is really going to happen.

Jesus foretells of the signs of His coming in the Olivet Prophecy. In Matthew 24:29-30, after Satan has wreaked his revenge on the inhabitants of the earth, "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." Revelation 6:12-17 describes this time as the opening salvo of God's wrath, sometimes called the Day of the Lord.

In Isaiah 13:13 God Almighty proclaims, "Therefore I will shake the heavens, and the earth will move out of her place, in the wrath of the Lord of hosts and in the day of His fierce anger." It seems God will move the earth out of its orbit, causing gigantic earthquakes and other geologic distress. Many disasters follow throughout the seventh seal, which include the Seven Trumpets and the Seven Bowls of God's wrath.

Revelation 16:12-16 describes the sixth angel pouring out his bowl on the River Euphrates, which dries it up and allows the armies to gather for the battle of Armageddon. Jesus Christ, the Messiah, with His armies (Revelation 19:11-16) will be seen as an alien force come to destroy the earth and its inhabitants. The nations of the earth, having planned to fight each other, will unite to oppose Christ and His heavenly host, the true inhabitants and possessors of the heavens and the earth.

Even in their unity, the nations will fail. Many thousands of rebellious humans will die horribly (Zechariah 14:3, 12-15; see Joel 2:1-11). The real destroyer, the real power over the earth's governments—the one who was really conspiring to help humanity destroy itself—will be exposed and imprisoned a thousand years (Revelation 20:1-3). Then God will establish His glorious Kingdom, and a time of unparalleled peace, safety and prosperity will dawn on the earth.

We can summarize Satan's cunning conspiracy to deceive mankind:

1. He inspires the notion of extraterrestrial aliens coming from outer space intent on destroying or defeating humanity.
2. He inspires the belief that if the nations combine their military forces, a united earth can overcome superior extraterrestrial aliens coming from outer space.
3. He inspires men to think that God is powerless or indifferent to human destruction, so mankind must depend on itself and technology to overcome overwhelming odds.

Satan's conspiracy to deceive mankind will include:

1. A sinful leader who claims to be God and performs miracles to prove it.
2. A world power, influenced and inhabited by demons, that will destroy any nation or group of people that does not submit to it.
3. A call to unite all nations to overcome and destroy what the world will see as an alien invasion, but will actually be the return of the true Messiah, Jesus Christ to restore God's government on the earth.

The irony of this whole scenario is that Satan is already at work destroying humankind, and the world does not even realize it.