The Culmination of Human History
The history of mankind from the time of God's creation of Adam and Eve to our present day has spanned over 6000 years. For more than sixty centuries mankind has attempted to find satisfaction through forms of government. Kings, Pharaohs, Emperors, and Czars ruled the course of human experience during the days of the universal empires of Babylon, Medo-Persia, Greece, and Rome, and the dynasties of China.
These various forms of government are not part of our present society, since a monumental change in man's history occurred during WWI when the prophecy of Psa.110:5: "The Lord at thy right hand shall strike through kings in the day of his wrath" became a reality. It was at this juncture of man's experience that God initiated the setting up of His Kingdom in the days of earth's kings as prophesied by Daniel in Dan.2:44 "And in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand for ever." Daniel here calls our attention to this government of promise as not being of human planning and origin, bur is one that is set up and empowered by the God of heaven!
Since the beginning of WWI, in 1914, which functioned as God's turning point in man's history where He struck through kings, the world has witnessed and endured, many new forms of government. Dictatorships, and the various "isms" replaced monarchies, while democracies and republics also were established in earth's societies. Many of these new governments promised their constituents a utopian life of peace, happiness, health, and prosperity as they attempted to fulfill the prophecy of Haggai 2:7: "And I will shake all nations, and the desire of all nations shall come: and I will fill this house with glory, saith the LORD of hosts."
But, rather than fulfilling man's desire, what has occurred are the experiences the prophet Amos predicted in Amos 5:18-20: " Woe unto you that desire the day of the LORD! to what end is it for you? the day of the LORD is darkness, and not light. As if a man did flee from a lion, and a bear met him; or went into the house, and leaned his hand on the wall, and a serpent bit him. Shall not the day of the LORD be darkness, and not light? even very dark, and no brightness in it?"
In Amos' prophecy the fleeing man represents the world's experiences during its dark time of trouble. At the dawning of our era, Great Britain ruled the most expansive empire on earth. The lion in this prophecy, Britain's national symbol, appropriately illustrated the mighty nation that devoured (colonized) weaker nations. Colonialism's suffocating grasping led to the world's fleeing to another form of government.
The man in Amos 5:20 escaped the lion only to meet the bear-a form of government diametrically opposed to the grasping greed of colonialism-communism! The former Soviet Union, the "Bear" of Amos' prophecy, offered man another hope for safety in this time of trouble. Communism's failure to rescue man was underscored by its precipitous fall. The nations are now seeking another hope of security-nationalism.
Entering the "house" of nationalism has been anything but comfortable for the world. Bosnia, Serbia, Germany, Iran, Iraq and other nations now seeking safety in nationalism, are suffering civil war, economic malaise, the rise of new "hate groups" and other ills. While in the supposed security of ultra-nationalism (will church and state unite?) the government will result in being bitten by the serpent. That old Serpent, the Devil and Satan, which once deceived the nations that they were Christ's Kingdom (Revelation 12:9) will bite them again. Then the nations will feel the rebuke of Jehovah in the great time of trouble.
The Scriptures are charged with signs that have become the headlines of our day: Jerusalem is no longer trodden down of the Gentiles (Luke 21:24); many new nations have gained independence (Luke 21:29,30); evil is exposed as never before (1 Cor. 4:5); most people, even the professedly religious, have little faith (Luke 18:8); men love themselves, have no respect for parents, and have no natural affection (2Tim 3:1-5); turmoil grows between labor and capital (James 5:1-4); wars and war preparations intensify (Joel 3:9-11); all the while men proclaim "peace" (1Thess. 5:2,3); men's hearts fail for fear (Luke 21:26).
All of these prophecies mark us as in the time when the present evil world is being destroyed. God is now revealing Himself as never before in history; a revelation that will climax with the establishment of the Kingdom of Christ on earth. Take heart-even though things must get worse before they get better. It is the unprecedented severity of world problems (Matthew 24:21) and the paralysis of hopelessness (Luke 21:26) that mark us as at the threshold of the great Kingdom blessings that God has in store for man.
The global economy of today's world is leading mankind toward a one-world government. But the outcome of this effort will not be as the leaders of today's world may expect. It will result in the fulfillment of yet another prophecy where God has said as recorded by the prophet Zephaniah in chapter 3:8-9: "Therefore wait ye upon me, saith the LORD, until the day that I rise up to the prey: for my determination is to gather the nations, that I may assemble the kingdoms, to pour upon them mine indignation, even all my fierce anger: for all the earth shall be devoured with the fire of my jealousy. For then will I turn to the people a pure language, that they may all call upon the name of the LORD, to serve him with one consent."
This will be the kingdom Jesus taught us to pray for in Mat. 6:10: "Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven." A kingdom on earth ... is the real answer to what we need! Early Christians expected a literal fulfillment of this prayer. Shouldn't we?
Just imagine what it will mean!
REAL joy and peace and health. Isa 35:5-6: "Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped. Then shall the lame man leap as an hart, and the tongue of the dumb sing: for in the wilderness shall waters break out, and streams in the desert."
REAL contentment and fullness. Psa 67:6: "Then shall the earth yield her increase; and God, even our own God, shall bless us."
REAL government by God (Zion) for man that will not perish from this globe. Isa 35:10: "And the ransomed of the LORD shall return, and come to Zion with songs and everlasting joy upon their heads: they shall obtain joy and gladness, and sorrow and sighing shall flee away." Psa 125:1,2: "They that trust in the LORD shall be as mount Zion, which cannot be removed, but abideth for ever. As the mountains are round about Jerusalem, so the LORD is round about his people from henceforth even for ever."
REAL hopes soon to come. Psa. 145:16,17: "Thou openest thine hand, and satisfiest the desire of every living thing. The LORD is righteous in all his ways, and holy in all his works."
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