“Arise, shine, for your light has come and the glory of the Lord has risen upon you! For behold, darkness will cover the earth, and deep darkness the peoples, but the Lord will rise upon you, and His glory will appear upon you. Nations will come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your rising.” (Isa. 60:1-3)
I believe we have entered a time when darkness is indeed covering the earth. The principalities and powers of darkness have caused deception to creep into the minds of the people. Only this could possibly explain the insanity we are witnessing world-wide. In Jesus’ day the Israelites who converted to Christianity experienced persecution from the same powers of darkness that still exist. Another similarity that exists between then and now is the temple worship system of religion that featured buildings as the center of religious activity. As in Jesus’ day, a time is coming when “not one stone of our temples will remain left on top of another” (Matt. 24:2). They will either be foreclosed in the coming financial crises, or be confiscated or destroyed in the coming persecution.
I believe the “Phoenix church” that will arise from the ashes will resemble something else we witnessed in Jesus’ day: communities of disciples ministering in the marketplace, creating other disciples to follow their lead. They will meet in homes God is now preparing as sanctuaries, and the Phoenix will indeed arise and shine because the glory of the Lord will rise upon her and the gates of hell, now being opened wide to unleash destruction, will not prevail against her! True battle-tested witnesses of the Gospel now being taught, reproved, corrected, and trained (2 Tim. 3:16) in righteousness by the Holy Spirit will appear in God’s radiant glory to minister to, and provide for, the many left wandering the streets wondering what hit them. People both from the world and modern Christendom’s religions will stream to their light, looking for answers the world will no longer have and provision and protection only God will be able to provide. I live for that day, and pray “as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord (Josh. 24:15)” as one of His glorious sanctuaries!