Wars, Rumors of Wars, Famines, and Earthquakes in Divers Places

by Joshua Tilghman on October 10, 2013

The EgoHave you ever wondered what the end of the world might be like? Jesus’ disciples did. They asked Jesus about it at the Mount of Olives:

“…what shall be the sign of thy coming, and the end of the world?” (Matt. 24:3)

To millions around the globe, Jesus’ response tells them that it will be a terrible apocalyptic scenario, but students of esoteric interpretation know that Jesus’ answer gives them a secret to the mind. Most scriptures are about the body and mind, not the literal events we read about. Let’s dissect Jesus’ answer to understand this important event and how it could one day relate to you.

First, Jesus’ response:

 “And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take head that no man deceive you. For many shall come in my name, saying I am Christ; and shall deceive many. And ye shall hear of wars, and rumors of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places…”

Do not be deceived by a false Christ

I want to dissect the above scriptures one at a time. Jesus began by telling us that many people will come saying they are the Christ, but do not be deceived. What did he mean?

Put simply, a false Christ is the ego. The ego in man masquerades as truth, when really it is the illusion. And often it is the institutional church which reinforces the ego in man. Man, and more importantly, the ego, will always be around preaching and promoting doctrines, institutions, religious ideologies, and strongholds that keep the lower ego in man in power.

One of the major deficiencies of the church today is that nothing is preached on developing the Christ within. The Christ within is where the real power for transformation is. One of Paul’s and Jesus’ main messages was to help us birth the Christ that is an inherent, latent potential within individual consciousness.

“My little children, of whom I travail in birth again until Christ be formed within you…” (Gal. 4:19).

“To whom God would make known what is the riches of this glory of the mystery among the gentiles (non-spiritual), which is Christ in you…” (1 Col. 1:27).

“…the Kingdom of God is within you.” (Luke 17:21).

Our thoughts make everything in life go round. Our thoughts make or break us. If we can’t view life through spiritually mature eyes, the most insignificant situations become gigantic problems that no salvation message is going to fix. It is the game of the ego. Drama, drama, and more drama. Religious doctrines reinforce the drama. They so often stunt our growth because it puts conscious development on hold. How? Because they cause the ego to become entrenched. Belief systems are established that don’t really serve us or our fellow man. Religious doctrines teach us to be someone which will ultimately perish. It teaches us to believe, “I am right and you are wrong!” The ego is like the Pharisee. It filters the truth into a very limited perspective. Jesus’ mission included showing us the Pharisee can easily lie within us, through the ego.

Wars and rumors of wars

Next Jesus talks about wars and rumors of wars. Wars and rumors of wars having been going on for thousands of years. Can we really believe that Jesus was giving us a literal prophecy? If this was truly one of the warning signs of Jesus, it wouldn’t be valid. Nothing’s changed. There were wars in Jesus’ days and there are wars now. It should be obvious that Jesus wasn’t referring to literal wars. The scriptures always have a deeper meaning.

Exodus 15:3 states:

“The LORD is a man of war; the LORD is his name.”

Does it make any sense to say that the LORD of love, compassion, mercy, and longsuffering is a man of war?

This scripture is puzzling through traditional Christian interpretations. It would seem to justify events like the Inquisition, where millions of people were killed because they weren’t Christians.

Think about the Canaanites whom God asked the Israelites to eradicate from the Promised Land. All these Canaanites represent our lower thoughts and emotions of our selfish desires. Therefore, the LORD is a man of war because the LORD, as the higher self, comes in to clean house so that we can enter the Promised Land (higher states of conscious living).

Thus we can see that God is not a literal man of war; God is a man of war because he fills us so that we can end all wars within ourselves. He is the conqueror of the ego of man.

So what did Jesus really mean when he said there will be wars and rumors of wars?

Wars are symbolic of the conflict created by the ego. The wars are in our heads. Jesus was warning us about what happens in the mind of the individual. Before the death of the ego (the end of the world), the ego reigns. This ego creates conflict. When Christ returns in the individual (within you), the warring of the mind stops! Why? Because we stop identifying with the mind. We realize that the mind and the true intelligence that makes it possible is much larger than the individual ego the mind has the power to manifest. This is what it means to be resurrected.

Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom

Next, Jesus says that nation will rise again nation and kingdom against kingdom. Nations and kingdoms of the world are symbolic for the characters of the lower soul; they are pride, ambition, greed, conceit, and lust. Naturally this rhetoric is a continuation of Jesus’ discourse on the state of man’s ego. First comes the development of our lower natures. But through our experiences (sometimes suffering, as even Jesus learned obedience through suffering), we have the opportunity to advance consciousness.

Consider Isaiah 2:4, another messianic prophecy:

“And he (the messiah, the Christ) shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn anymore.”

We don’t fight wars with swords or spears anymore. We fight wars with missiles, nuclear weapons, and stealth technologies. Is there really a reason to believe that this prophecy is literal if it isn’t even relevant to today?

The mystic Jews who guarded these scriptures as sacred knew this prophecy was all about the day the messiah would return within the consciousness of the individual. Only then can all wars end, internally and externally!

Many Christians believe that the Jew has rejected their true messiah, the Christ. But is this the truth? Sadly, no. The truth is that many Jews and Christians have rejected the messiah and the Christ. They are one and the same. Let us stop bickering over semantics. The ideal that is the messiah and the Christ is beyond doctrine. It is even beyond our belief systems. It is a part of the true power of consciousness itself.

Famines and pestilences

Jesus then said there will be pestilence and famines. I have wrote about these symbols in other posts. Famines represent a severe shortage in the soul; it is a lack of spiritual development in the mental-emotional state. This is perfect language for Jesus to use, because wars usually lead to famine in the natural. It’s no different with the soul and within the individual. When the ego is in charge, your soul is famished. Wars of the mind leave us empty and devoid of life. They leave us famished.

Earthquakes in divers places

Finally, Jesus states that earthquakes will appear in increasing frequency and in places we wouldn’t expect. Review history, and you will see that again this has been the case over the past thousands of years. It’s not a literal prediction of the future. Earthquakes are symbolic of all the chaos in the lower state of consciousness. It’s usually a sign of the purging of the lower qualities of the ego right before a new state of consciousness. This is established many times in scripture.

“And behold, there was a great earthquake; for the angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came back and rolled away the stone from the door…” (Matt. 28:2).

“And suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken, and all the doors were opened, and everyone’s hands were loosed” (Acts. 16:26).

As you can see, the earthquake is a sign of catalyst for the individual. It is a sign of the new age of consciousness. Doors to the mind began to open. Hands (the active principle of spiritual evolution) are loosed. In short, the lower man, the man in the egoic prison, must be shaken up and dismantled so that the higher man can reign, so that the Christ can manifest on earth.

This is true of the Old Testament as well. Whenever the earth opened up to swallow someone or a group, a purging took place and the nation of Israel was able to move forward one step closer to the Promise Land and higher states of consciousness.


The final message of Jesus is that we must endure.

“But he that endure until the end, the same shall be saved” (Matt. 24:13).

Those who endure to the end have the promise of a new dawn, the dawn of the daystar (Christ) arising in their hearts.

“We have a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well to take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the daystar arise in your hearts (minds)…” (1 Pet. 1:19).

Enduring is about facing the ego. It’s about realizing what the ego is, the game of life. Once we see the game for what it is, we then have more choices about how to play it. The situations in our life that were once monumental become smaller. The joys and the ups of life are more fully appreciated. Even the downs and the lows become meaningful. Life is renewed. It doesn’t mean all of the difficulties suddenly disappear during our sojourn here. It just means that we are no longer bound by the illusion that our situation is who we are. Consciousness can never be so limited.

Is the end of the world really the end of the ego?

Let’s be clear on one thing. The end of the world, at least from Jesus’ standpoint, is not the end of the ego. Ego death is sort of a misnomer. The ego doesn’t really die, just as Jesus didn’t really die on the cross. The life that was in him could never die. Instead, there was a power that resurrected him. The resurrection is symbolic of the new life that is provided when we realize what the ego truly is. It is sometimes termed “death” because it no longer has the power over us that it once did.

“Ego death” is more about a transmutation of the ego, from the lower man to the higher. It’s a transition from the lower ego to the spiritual ego. Even these words don’t do the transformation justice because they are just words. But the consciousness beneath the words is real. It can’t really be explained, only experienced.

Is the ego ultimately still there after what we term, “ego death?” Of course it is. You wouldn’t be an individual if it wasn’t. You wouldn’t have a sense of “I.” Realizing that we are one with everything doesn’t cause us to lose our individuality, but it does enable us to gain a new perspective through our individuality.

The spiritual ego is not motivated by lower thoughts and emotions. In other words, the lower ego ends when you don’t identify with your situation anymore.

So remember, the end of the world and the return of Christ happens within you. It brings new life. And it is one more step towards conscious spiritual advancement.

Blessings. Namaste.

{ 23 comments… read them below or add one }

selina October 11, 2013 at 3:40 pm

Hello Joshua, Thank’s for this post very interesting! Love and light Selina x


Joshua Tilghman October 13, 2013 at 12:04 pm

You’re very welcome, Selina.


Vic Proulx October 12, 2013 at 10:17 am

Stunning. Thank you, and thank you for the Biblical references within this context. Sadly, as you know, many believers would, and will, reject this teaching. It is most hard to have someone give up what is sometimes a lifetime paradigm of literal interpretation. I fear also that some wate for a tribulation of unthinkable violence as justification, or proof – if you will- of their sometimes difficult walk. Note too, that as the ego steps down, love steps up.


Joshua Tilghman October 13, 2013 at 12:01 pm

Vic, you stated:

“It is most hard to have someone give up what is sometimes a lifetime paradigm of literal interpretation.”

This was one of the hardest paradigm shifts I had to make! Overall it was a process, but I still remember the one night my mind actually accepted it.

Thanks for commenting.


hector morales October 12, 2013 at 1:25 pm

Yoo man im a big fan of your work and i want to ask you have you seen the movie revolver,its a great movie and its about the ego in humans


Joshua Tilghman October 13, 2013 at 11:59 am


I have not seen the movie, but now I would like to. Sometimes movies can get this point across quite well.


Vernon October 13, 2013 at 5:04 am

There is a lot of learning here and I’m blessed to be a part of it. You give me a new understanding of the Bible. Thank you Josh!


Joshua Tilghman October 13, 2013 at 11:57 am


Glad you are getting something from the studies. Thank you for reading!


heather October 16, 2013 at 4:05 pm

You know I really like your writings… however, why you say that Jesus did not die on the cross, I cannot fathom! Many people were crucified at that time and Jesus was one of them, well Christ (a god) by that time had entered Jesus’ body so that He could experience death as humans do, because He loves us (gods don’t die, they are immortal). He had to go through the Gate of Death so that He could merge the two worlds, go into Hades via the portal of death.
I consider that the outer world is a manifestation of our thoughts…we create our lives; as above so below… as we think we manifest, even if it is this or next life… He died for us, to re-enliven the dying Earth…our dying bodies, (otherwise we would have sunk too deep into matter, got too material)…so that we could carry on developing our soul and spirit. Sci-fi imagination can be useful – as He died He gave His En-Lighten-ing Forces/His strength to the Earth, and therefore to our earth bodies…imagine a Light brighter than any entering each one of us and glowing around the world.
It is not impossible that Christ in Jesus was crucified, as was His intention for His purposes, hard for us to fathom, but we are slowly learning why. We are destined to become as He is. He is our blueprint, our archetype, our Lord. The Bible is both literal and metaphorical! Which is why everything is, actually, INCREDIBLE! We are inside a myth that is true, so to speak!


Joshua Tilghman October 20, 2013 at 7:53 pm


I respect your position, and would never try to change your mind otherwise. As I have stated in other articles on this blog, I believe the Jesus of the Gospels was based on a real character / characters, but greatly exaggerated. In my opinion, it doesn’t really matter. What matters most is that we understand the words of Jesus that have come down to us.

Thanks for sharing your thoughts. Many blessings!


Gigi October 19, 2015 at 7:29 am

I agree, there’s a zohar statement about the parables, actual events other text have a meaning on surface and another under the cloak. The shallow and ignorant will see surface meaning, those with depth and wisdom will see the surface and cloaked meanings. Sometimes there is prophecy in the deep meaning or surface meaning can also have prophecy


Andreas November 8, 2013 at 8:18 am

Thank you so much for this article! Many puzzle pieces fell into place for me.


Joshua November 9, 2013 at 10:43 am

You’re very welcome Andreas.


anny November 9, 2013 at 10:28 am

Hello Joshua,

On the whole I agree with what you have written, but I would not totally discard the literal interpretation. It is evident that we have obviously left a previous age and entered a new one with so many people awakening. We are really in a time with rites of passage, so to speak.

There have always been wars, that is true, but it seems that right now there are more than ever because everything that was left unresolved comes up now in order to solve it.

Also famines, pests, floods and earthquakes are much more frequent than before. No to forget typhoons or hurricanes as they are called in the USA. Just now a new typhoon passed over the Philippines, again creating havoc and leaving lots of dead people in its wake. It is heading straight for Vietnam and Laos now, where our son lives with his wife and newborn baby. The baby is two months old and this is already his third typhoon! My son said today in our last telephone conversation that there have been more typhoons since his birth than in all of the rest of the time he has lived in Vietnam. This is his seventh year! From now on communications will be cut until after the typhoon has passed and electricity and internet will have been restored again. The mobile phones must be kept for emergency situations (if they even work then) because their batteries cannot be recharged without electricity.

As far as your quote beneath, and your comment on that, is concerned:

“And he (the messiah, the Christ) shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn anymore.”

We don’t fight wars with swords or spears anymore. We fight wars with missiles, nuclear weapons, and stealth technologies. Is there really a reason to believe that this prophecy is literal if it isn’t even relevant to today?

Even when you take this literally, you can adjust it to the time of today, which is the only way I have heard people interpret it anyway. Of course swords and spears are translated into tanks and guns, in bombs and fighter planes and what have you. This text is being used by the Peace Movement and rightly so. Its adapted literal meaning should not be discarded.

All this of course is not a contradiction of the symbolic interpretation because that is equally valid, but I do not think we should have to choose between the two.




Joshua November 9, 2013 at 10:49 am

Very true, Anny. But we have to remember there are many more people in the world today, which means more opportunities for wars. More egos compound this phenomenon, not to mention that our environment and earth is affected by human thoughts and emotions. The more ego brought into this world the greater the chance for natural disasters. A lot of these we create, even in the natural through technology. For example, many believe that “fracking,” a new way in which to extract natural gases from the earth, contributes to many of the mini-earthquakes in some of our states. Of course this is hotly debated, but who knows!?


anny November 9, 2013 at 11:17 am

Hi Joshua,

I agree but I think that this is not only cause but also consequence of the processes of this time in which everything has to be resolved. Everything comes into the open now and that leads to reactions. It is literally a time of crucifixion when so much comes together. Hard but necessary. You can imagine my own emotions are somewhat raw right now but I try to let them be and observe and accept them instead of pushing them down as I used to.

Fracking I consider to be very dangerous. Quite apart from the possibility of mini earth quakes, which is also a risk of ‘ordinary’ gas extraction. Those earth quakes are in fact the only ones we have here in Holland, or at least in the north of the country. Fracking totally disturbs the balance of the ecosystem because it all hangs together. I have already heard that it had consequences for the water supply too. And we should never forget that the earth is a living being too. In this way we are killing her and not so slowly either.

And I agree with you that our thoughts and emotions have an enormous influence on everything although it is not completely clear yet what is the consequence of what exactly. I do not know if anybody has done any research in this respect.


heather November 9, 2013 at 12:28 pm

Basically we are in The Dark Ages … looking at us a thousand years from now. The Christ was here before Golgotha, in Being. He entered (at the Baptism) into a human body, Jesus’, for three years – to teach humans The Example of being a True Hu-Man Being and then to die an EARTHLY type of death, to use the body as a gateway to the underworld (where we all go when we leave our bodies…into purgatory and then back ‘up’ again…long story) to help those souls who are trapped there….showing them that The Light actually exists; they were trapped due to their disbelief (you can’t see what you don’t believe in). Watch What The Bleep Do We Know! I have to agree with Anny, the Bible IS literal – it is not a question of choosing between a metaphor and an historical event. The problem I see is that the Spiritual World is no longer hallowed, believed in by the many – so those people ONLY believe in their own egos and one life. There is more in Heaven and Earth than meets the eye! Take that literally also. We don’t know half of it, and more unfolds for those who choose to seek it and see it. There is magic everywhere, synchronicity, compassion and courage and strength in those who endure … if you said people would fly in metal machines a few hundred years ago… you would have been tortured by the inquisition. We are slowly transforming/growing into more. I would take great care to think again … we are not,as you say Joshua, our lower selves, what you call our little egos. But there is a danger here to veer further and further away from our union with spiritual beings (angels, kyriotes, seraphim in present Christian lingo); veer away from the spiritual world, a subtle insidious path that seems to say we are more and that maybe the ‘story’ of Christ is just a story… i.e. He never existed, which would then cut out everything He refers to! Yes, we are not our mean little greedy egos, we are also not JUST our higher, better Egos either. To pin so much on the bible as metaphor for the modern, brilliant, refreshing and enlightening step forward (as in New Earth by Tolle) can also be an extremely clever avenue, put in by devious implanters, for DISREGARDING the Actual REALITY of the spiritual world. People could start to say, I am better now, I am more compassionate, happier… all these stories are wonderful…these lovely stories helped me; and see them as stories created by nice, clever people… and so close off the REALITY of these ‘stories’. The Great Big Dimension of the Spiritual World, FULL of spiritual beings…who are helping us develop into the awesome being, in the image of God, we are babies at now, exists. AND dark spiritual beings (i.e. beings who live in the spiritual world also) who would rather we did not succeed…names like Satan come up, the Persian Ahriman, Lucifer, Hindu Asuras. As sci-fi as it can seem – this is actually going on! It’s A-Mazing. And Christ is THE Being who has chosen to lead us…He, The Great Sun Being, is on our side; we are SO lucky! To relegate much of His ‘work’ as metaphor helps dilute it to story only level. And yet, it can be used metaphorically, parabolically to HELP us on the path to betterment as well – which is why I love your work Joshua and Tolle and Wayne Dyer… all of you are just fabulous. Just do remember, that there IS a Heaven (spiritual world…call it what you will) out there waiting for us to consciously link up and ask for help…prayer, meditation, song, sacred dance, chant. These are NOT just for mind-calming/transforming. USE them to CONSCIOUSLY LINK up to Beings of Light and to Our Christ ….of course. For the beings of Light cannot help us unless we ask, for we are beings of free choice. If we DON’T connect…the link weakens… if we think, ach…the Bible, the Tao.. is just a great story..then therefore we are saying the spiritual world does not exist…the link will go away and we will, eventually, become Satan’s, mindless robots/minions after all. The scientist and educator Dr. Rudolf Steiner, Anny, talks about the effect of our thoughts (in his book Anthroposophical Ethics) on so-called natural disasters… He talks about our need to take on 100% responsibility for anything that happens to us or our world. He is misunderstood by many, who can’t handle stoic truths… but equally understood by many others! Good Day dear people, you are all wonderful, thinking, caring souls…we are all in it together; thank you for bringing in and taking on such thoughts. May you all create strong connections with our Spiritual World.


DraakBlue December 5, 2013 at 7:49 pm

Incredible, you were able to interpret every single word as something other than what they usually mean, Jesus must be a horrible communicator!


Joshua Tilghman December 7, 2013 at 10:44 am


I do understand your reluctance to believe in anything other than what the church has traditional preached, but the Bible is full of deeper revelation through symbolism. I hope you will look into some day. Blessings!


Graeme May 8, 2015 at 3:20 pm

This is Heresy TWISTING everything Jesus said to mean something else and then publishing your LUCIFERIC new age deception online, misleading many people. This is serious you are Wrong, very wrong! Jesus Christ said clearly exactly what he meant, otherwise he would state clearly ”This is a parable”


Joshua Tilghman July 23, 2015 at 8:01 pm

Thanks for your comment, Graeme. Everyone is entitled to their opinion, and I respect that.


Jenna the Enlightened July 17, 2017 at 4:15 am


Jesus DID teach in parables. In fact, the Bible says he didn’t speak except in parables only. Stop thinking that those on meat are somehow luceferic. We are learning deeper meanings, and how dare you judge us!


melchezedek June 13, 2015 at 8:05 am

Interesting thoughts on His Word. The rebukes are even better. The Word of God cannot be changed and his spirit has proven that. Keep searching,ask, you’ll find Him.


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