The Signpost Perspective: The Refugee Crisis and the Receiving Nations

It’s a growing concern in the world community and especially in Europe: “migrants” fleeing Syria and entering Europe easily number into the millions. That’s what the news calls them: “migrants”. What they really are is “refugees”: refugees from a nightmare condition that is Islamic State (IS). They escaped with their lives and the clothes on their backs. The news stories say this is the worst refugee crisis since World War II.

Upon further thought, I believe this refugee crisis represents two things: another manifestation of the Signposts, i.e. what Jesus called the beginning of birth pains, and the beginning of the fulfillment of Matthew 25 starting at verse 31, the prophecy of the nations. Many of these refugees are Christians. Fleeing persecution on a scale that has not been seen in centuries, these people are in need – for food, clothes, and shelter.

The news stories say this is the worst refugee crisis since World War II. Indeed it is. After 1945 millions of people were displaced from their homes and countries and had to find a place to settle down and restart their lives. And now there are millions on the move again. They are displaced because of IS; they only want to settle down and restart their lives. Only the number will not shrink and the problem will not go away.

Refugees and the Signposts

Look at the map. It shows the area affected by the First Signpost and IS. Millions of people are fleeing Syria. The Bible tells us that the same butchery marking IS will be used by Iran during the Second Signpost which will affect the area marked in red (the color of the second horseman). We may see other Christian communities in newly affected countries also see refuge. That butchery will continue with the Third and Fourth Signposts. You can see the larger area that will include black (color of the third horseman) during the Third Signpost. We may see Copts from Egypt flee for their lives if they can. And you can see the area of green (fourth horseman) that is the Fourth Signpost.

The increasing areas of earth affected by the progressing Signposts.  Note the blue area is the path followed by many refugees right now.

The increasing areas of earth affected by the progressing Signposts. Note the blue area is the path followed by many refugees right now.

This suggests that during the Signposts prior to the Tribulation there will be a wave of refugees – people fleeing for their lives. This wave will likely grow with each Signpost. In this post I showed how the erasure of boundaries, the Caliph, and butchery – all exhibited by IS – were going to be the norm all over the Middle East during the Second Signpost. Now we must add displaced refugees. They will flee from the red areas and then the black areas and then the green areas; all looking for a place to go. This is a new aspect to the misery that will be the signature of the Signposts. The Tribulation itself will encompass an area larger than that of the Fourth Signpost.

The Nations

We are, I believe, also seeing the opening of another aspect of the end-times. Witness Matthew 25:31-33:

“When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his throne in heavenly glory. All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left.”

Remember the rest of the prophecy? Those that help the least of Christ’s brothers help Christ. Those that do not, do not. These are nations being judged. So have you been watching the news about the refugees in Europe? It seems that the responses by the European nations cover the entire spectrum. Hungary and Macedonia stop the refugees at their borders and only let them in if they can escort them through their country to the far border. Hungarian police are setting up fences of razor wire. A few countries like the U.K. and France said they will take some.

And then there is Germany. The country responsible for the last major refugee crisis during World War II is acting to support the solution to this refugee crisis.

Germany is the hero for the moment. With a population of 80 million, they are offering to allow 800,000 refugees – a mass of people equal to 1% of their population – to come into their country and begin new lives. Germans are cheering at their border.

Refugees arrive at a train station in central Germany, Sept. 5, 2015. (AP Photo/Jens Meyer)

Refugees arrive at a train station in central Germany, Sept. 5, 2015.
(AP Photo/Jens Meyer)

German leadership is proposing a quota system. No one has said this yet, but if every European nation took in a number of refugees equal to 1% of their population, than Europe, from Portugal to the Ural Mountains in Russia, with over 700 million people, might take 7 million refugees. Unfortunately, we may very well find though that even if the European nations act nobly and resettle this many, they will find that the subsequent Signposts will generate refugees numbering in many more millions.

But Jesus’ coming is soon. We can see it with the coming of the Second Signpost. The most important mission we have right now is said well by Proverbs 24:11: “Rescue those being led away to death; hold back those staggering toward slaughter.”  In other words, show people the love of Christ and His Gospel.


This is a new development with the end-times that may never have been considered. We may very well in the years ahead see a growing tsunami of human refugees that will make the refugee crisis of World War II pale in comparison as the scope of affected lands grows with each Signpost. The nations of the West should clothe, feed and make disciples of those who are showing up on their doorsteps as refugees fleeing from what is to become the Tribulation, as Jesus warned.

Categories: In The News, The Four Signposts, The Signpost Perspective

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5 replies

  1. From the Sermon on the Plain and the Beautitudes in Luke 6:31, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” How appropriate is this verse in light of what these oppressed peoples are facing and living all because of radicals who are trying to reconstruct an Islamic Caliphate. God is giving us an unprecedented opportunity to show his love not only by helping these oppressed people to meet physical and economic needs, but to share and show the love of the glorious gospel of Jesus to them which is their deepest need! There are opportunities to show God’s love to Muslims, Mideast Christians and other pagan peoples so that they are coming to us instead of us going to them! What a twist of irony!

    As terrible as this situation is; and no doubt it is let us be about our Father’s business by doing the work He has laid out for his people, the Church, to do his will by providing love in action to be the hands and feet of our Lord!

    Good post, Mark!


  2. Thanks for this posting, Mark. Of course there will be mingled among real refugees some jihadists, probably. Do they ever miss an opportunity to shield themselves behind women, children and others? I know that should not be our focus, however. Kudos to Germany. I wonder how America will help?

  3. Well, you were right, Mark, on the resolution not passing as being connected to the second signpost. Wondering if the ram will make major advancements in the coming months where the next president in 2017 will go along with NATO forces to advance against the ram. Wondering also if this timing with Thomas Nelson will help to explain this to many… so as to uphold hope through this disastrous policy that passed.

  4. Excellent Insight Mark! Thanks for your article.

  5. IRAN MAKES A MOVE… (from 9/11/15:

    On Thursday evening, we chronicled the latest in the drama that is Syria’s horrific civil war, noting that, according to an Israeli defense source, “hundreds” of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards are on the ground in Syria fighting alongside the Russians to support Bashar al-Assad’s depleted forces as they battle to regain control of the country.

    If true, that would answer the following question which we’ve been asking for quite some time: will Iran remain on the sidelines and allow the Houthis to be routed in Yemen and Assad deposed in Syria, or will Tehran, like Moscow, finally decide that the time for rhetoric has come to an end?

    Reports of Iranian involvement come on the heels of rampant speculation about the scope of Russia’s military buildup near Latakia where US “intelligence” and a series of unnamed “Lebanese sources” claim Moscow is essentially preparing for a full-on push to rout any and all domestic opposition to the Assad regime. The question, of course, is what happens when foreign opposition to the Assad regime isn’t willing to accept the restoration of the strongman’s rule.

    Predictably, there’s been no shortage of back-and-forth banter between John Kerry and Sergei Lavrov over the past several days. Here’s how Lavrov characterizes the exchange:

    “Kerry was also pushing the very strange idea that supporting Bashar Assad in his anti-terror fight only strengthens the positions of ISIS, because the sponsors of ISIS would pump even more arms and money into it,” Lavrov said.

    “It’s an absolutely upside-down logic and yet another attempt to appease those who use terrorists to fight dissenting regimes,” the Russian FM said, mentioning US attempts to cooperate with varrious extremist groups in Syria over the past few years.

    “It’s a colossal mistake that the US-led [anti-ISIS] coalition never considered interaction with Syria, not even information exchange,” Lavrov said. “I cannot comprehend this logic, or rather absolute lack of logic.”

    “We help not only Syria, we also provide weapons to Iraq and other countries of the region that find themselves on the frontline with the terror threat. Equally for Iraq and other countries, we do so without any political preconditions,” Lavrov said.

    And on Friday, Lavrov took it up a notch with a series of very serious-sounding (albeit hilariously overstated, we hope) soundbites delivered at a news conference in Russia. Here’s Reuters:

    At a news conference, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Russia was sending equipment to help Assad fight Islamic State. Russian servicemen were in Syria, he said, primarily to help service that equipment and teach Syrian soldiers how to use it.

    Russia was also conducting naval exercises in the eastern Mediterranean, he said, describing the drills as long-planned and staged in accordance with international law.

    Lavrov blamed Washington for cutting off direct military-to-military communications between

    Russia and NATO over the Ukraine crisis, saying such contacts were “important for the avoidance of undesired, unintended incidents”.

    “We are always in favor of military people talking to each other in a professional way. They understand each other very well,” Lavrov said. “If, as (U.S. Secretary of State) John Kerry has said many times, the United States wants those channels frozen, then be our guest.”

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