Many Christians are asking if they should flee to the mountains in the end times. It is clear that we are living in the Bible end times now, and with the moral degradation happening within the large cities in the majority of countries, asking about whether we should flee to the mountains or just up roots and go and live in the countryside is certainly a valid question, and something that needs positive thought.
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The cities, especially the large cities, have degraded morally to such a point now, that any Christian living within these cities will be tempted into sin more than those not living therein. And if I personally lived in one of the large cities of the world, then I would do everything I could to leave, as these particular places are not the kind of places God desires us to live, or to bring up our children. Even if you were just thinking of your children, then that would be a valid reason to leave.
Now many Christians think that Babylon in the book of Revelation is a city, and God says in Revelation 18:4 'come out of her My people.' But these sincere Christians have misunderstood who Babylon is in Revelation. It's not a city, it's a fallen church, and God is warning His people to come out of this fallen church, so they don't share in her sins.
There is a pattern in the Bible that we should look at concerning this issue of fleeing to the mountains.
- Where did God lead the Israelites to from Egypt? The wilderness.
- What did God do with Lot and his family? He called them out of the city of Sodom.
- Where did John the Baptist spend most of his days? In the wilderness.
- What did Jesus tell the people in Matthew 24 to do? Flee from Jerusalem into the mountains.
- What does Revelation 12 say the Church did between 538 - 1798 during the Roman Catholic Church persecutions? Fled into the wilderness.
So we certainly see a pattern of God's people being led into the wilderness or countryside in the Bible. Afterall, this is the natural place for God's people to be, and the place that He intended His people to be, as we can see from Adam and Eve living in the Garden of Eden. Remember, the countryside is God's creation. But the cities are the creation of sinful man.
We know that Jesus warned the early Christians that when they saw the abomination of desolation, that they should flee ... Matthew 24:16 ...'Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains.' ... This prophecy from Christ was fulfilled in AD70 when Jerusalem was destroyed by the Roman army, and those Christians who heeded the warning when the Roman army first surrounded the city in AD66 before withdrawing, fled and were saved. Now although this prophecy was fulfilled, it could also have a future spiritual application for the end times that we live in, pointing to the time when the mark of the beast is enforced and the true Christians who refuse the mark will be hunted and persecuted.
Now due to circumstances, not all Christians will be able to move to the countryside, especially with the high cost of buying homes and land these days. But we MUST include God in ALL of our decision making, having faith in Him and asking for His guidance in all things we do. If He impresses on your heart that you should go, and you are able to, then go! It's His will we need to follow, not our own.
We know that not all Christians will leave for the mountains, because of what it says in Revelation 6:9-11 ...'And when he had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held: And they cried with a loud voice, saying, How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth? And white robes were given unto every one of them; and it was said unto them, that they should rest yet for a little season, until their fellowservants also and their brethren, that should be killed as they were, should be fulfilled.'
This scripture shows that many Christians will not have escaped to the mountains, and will have been caught and killed for not taking the mark of the beast. The souls under the altar are all the Christians who were killed for their faith, including the millions who were slaughtered between 538 - 1798 at the hands of the Roman Catholic Church. These are not actual souls doing this by the way, it's just a prophetic image that Revelation is giving us. So there will be many Christians in the end times who will have to die for their faith and be witnesses for Christ within the cities.
Please Note - The mark of Revelation's Beast is coming, and once the Sunday Law, SEE HERE, is enforced, if you do not move to the countryside or flee to the mountains, but remain in the towns and cities, then Satan will easily find you and persecute you. See Revelation 13:15.
Is there any other good reason for Christians to flee to the mountains or countryside? Well, we can all see the moral degradation that is happening around us in the towns and cities. Drink, drugs, violence and all kinds of sin and evil is happening all around us. Not only that, but the way of life in the larger cities is contrary to God. People have no time for Jesus anymore, they are too busy living the city life of work, play and shopping. Even professing Christians have little time for God because they have filled their lives with so much stuff, that Christ is pushed aside amid the hustle and bustle of life. Add to that the pollution of the cities from factories and vehicles, and you have a very good reason to escape to the countryside. There is also so much temptation around us these days within the cities, that many are falling pray to satan's devices.
"The time is near when the large cities will be visited by the judgments of God. In a little while, these cities will be terribly shaken. No matter how large or how strong their buildings, no matter how many safeguards against fire may have been provided, let God touch these buildings, and in a few minutes or a few hours they are in ruins." (E.White, CL 7.2)
"The ungodly cities of our world are to be swept away by the besom of destruction. In the calamities that are now befalling immense buildings and large portions of cities, God is showing us what will come upon the whole earth." (E.White, Testimonies, vol. 7, pp. 82, 83. (1902) (CL 7.3)
Another Good reason to leave the cities!
"Again and again the Lord has instructed that our people are to take their families away from the cities, into the country, where they can raise their own provisions; for in the future the problem of buying and selling will be a very serious one. We should now begin to heed the instruction given us over and over again: Get out of the cities into rural districts, where the houses are not crowded closely together, and where you will be free from the interference of enemies." (Ellen White, The Adventist Home, p. 141)
"The cities are filled with temptation. We should plan our work in such a way as to keep our young people as far as possible from this contamination. The cities are to be worked from outposts. Said the messenger of God, 'Shall not the cities be warned? Yes, but not by God's people living in them, but by their visiting them, to warn them of what is coming upon the earth'" (Evangelism, p. 77)
If you look back to the Garden of Eden, you will see what kind of surroundings God originally planned for mankind. His beautiful creation is what He intended for us to be surrounded by, not huge concrete cities full of sin and temptation. There is very little left of what God created in these big cities today, as satan has caused man to push God out and choose his own kind of dwelling place.
If you are being affected by all the sin and evil around you, and you and your family are finding it difficult to focus on Christ where you are within your town or city, and you have an opportunity to move to the countryside or at least a much more relaxed, safe neighbourhood, then yes, it would be a good idea for you. At the end of the day, it is our relationship with Christ Jesus that is the most important factor in our lives, and if that is suffering where you live, then uprooting to the countryside is a wise move. But please bring this to God first and let Him guide you. Do not rush into this ...
"Let everyone take time to consider carefully and not be like the man in the parable who began to build and was not able to finish. Not a move should be made but that movement and all that it portends are carefully considered, everything weighed... There may be individuals who will make a rush to do something, and enter into some business they know nothing about. This God does not require. Let there be nothing done in a disorderly manner, that there shall be a great loss or sacrifice made upon property because of ardent, impulsive speeches which stir up an enthusiasm which is not after the order of God, that a victory that was essential to be gained, shall, for lack of level-headed moderation and proper contemplation and sound principles and purposes, be turned into a defeat." (E.White, Selected Messages, vol. 2, pp. 362, 363)
Will it be a wise move to leave the larger cities? Definitely yes! The final signal for us to leave the cities and move to the countryside will be the enforcement of the mark of the beast. Many will escape to the countryside and mountains, while others will be captured and killed. The fact that Revelation 13 says we will not be able to buy or sell will be a big factor in deciding to go to the countryside for many Christians. What I would ask is that you fall to your knees before your Heavenly Father and ask for His guidance on this. Does He want you to go now? Can you go now? Trust in the only One who can provide for you and your families needs ... Philippians 4:19 ...'But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.' ... Whatever you choose to do, please continue to live for Christ Jesus every day. Keep looking up, study the Bible and keep watching and waiting for His glorious return.
If you would like more reading material to do with whether Christians should flee to the mountains in the end times, then take a look at COUNTRY LIVING, written by a humble woman called Ellen White in the early 1900's.