Dear Brethren and Friends,
So many have forecast the end of the age (or world) over the course of the last 2,000 years and, to date, everyone has proven to be wrong. I have a book on this very subject and the author takes over 350 pages to discuss a mountain of information from around the world about failed prophecies from a myriad of different sources. This book, published in 1996, asked “What is it about the advent of the year 2000 which propels millions of people in the direction of apocalyptic belief? Why should Christians who know perfectly well that Christ was not born in AD 1 attach such importance to the calendar change? Even more strangely, why should the prospect of a new millennium quicken the pulse of millions of non-Christians? Belief in the approaching End of Time, we shall discover, is not the exclusive preserve of placard-waving prophets of doom. It is one of the great driving forces of history.”
Of course, the Church of God has long understood the need for Christ’s return, because such an event is clearly prophesied in the pages of God’s Word. The founder of Christianity spoke about His return to this earth in Matthew 24, Mark 13 and Luke 21, and the fact that there have been so many dates given by so many people (all of which, to date, have inevitably been wrong) doesn’t nullify the inevitability of Christ’s return.
Until relatively recently in man’s history, the factors that must be in place at the time of the Second Coming were simply not there. But in the year 2007, can we be sure that this much awaited event is not that far away? In Matthew 24, Jesus talks about the “coming of the Son of Man,” and He states in verses 32-33: “Now learn this parable from the fig tree: When its branch has already become tender and puts forth leaves, you know that summer is near. So you also, when you see all these things, know that it is near—at the doors.” In verse 36, Jesus says: “But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, but My Father only.” We may not know the exact “day and hour,” but we can discern the times in which we live and understand that Christ’s return surely cannot be that far away.
We have long understood the “day for a thousand years” principle, and this gives us a perspective that, until in more recent days, was just not applicable. Very few people in the world today understand God’s master plan of salvation where He has allocated approximately 7,000 years to fulfill His purpose for mankind. The first 6,000 years are allotted to man, allowing him to attempt to rule himself, followed by 1,000 years of Godly rule over this earth. In 2 Peter 3:8 the apostle Peter states that “… with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.” We are right at the end of the “six days” (six thousand years) where man has shown himself to be utterly incapable of ruling in a Godly way. The seventh-day Sabbath pictures the soon coming 1,000 year millennial reign of Christ after His return.
In addition, it was not until the 1950’s that weapons of mass destruction were of such magnitude that they were capable of destroying all human life from off the face of the earth, which is a condition that would have to be in place at the end of the age. Matthew 24:21-22 states: “For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be. And unless those days were shortened, no flesh would be saved; but for the elect’s sake those days will be shortened.” That general time frame has now arrived.
In Revelation 11:7-9 we are given an insight into the killing of the two witnesses which occurs just before our Lord’s return to this earth: “When they (the two witnesses) finish their testimony, the beast that ascends out of the bottomless pit will make war against them, overcome them, and kill them. And their dead bodies will lie in the street of the great city which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also our Lord was crucified (Jerusalem). Then those from the peoples, tribes, tongues, and nations will see their dead bodies three-and-a-half days, and not allow their dead bodies to be put into graves.” Until more recent times, this would simply have not been possible, but through the marvels of television, video cell phones and live computer feeds, this will enable the dead bodies of the two witnesses to be seen in every corner of the globe.
Also, the passage quoted above speaks of the “beast”—a charismatic political leader to arrive on the world scene just prior to Christ’s return. That personage is the representative of the last or tenth resurrection of the ancient Roman Empire. History tells us that nine resurrections have already occurred, and that the tenth and final revival is happening right now in Europe. Scripture reveals that this last resurrection will only exist for a short time (“one hour” in Biblical terminology, compare Revelation 17:10, 12). For more information, please read our free booklet, “Europe in Prophecy.” This fact alone—that the last revival of the ancient Roman Empire is occurring right now in front of our very eyes—shows us that Christ’s return is imminent.
Money markets around the world are now so financially interconnected and reliant that a significant problem in one country can have serious repercussions in other nations. The fall of Babylon is related in Revelation 18 where the world mourns its fall and the merchants state that “in one hour she is made desolate” (verse 19). In previous times, business moved at a much slower rate, but today, the world is instantly connected and things can move at a pace that make the head spin and can involve the whole world in a way that has never been possible before.
In the UK this summer we have had severe floods and terrorists attacks. The nation is in unprecedented levels of debt. Family life is under severe threat with promiscuity, perversion, all manner of sexual sins, abortion and a massive decline in decency and morality. And this is just the tip of the iceberg regarding ungodly behavior, and it is not confined just to the UK. Wherever you look, there are huge problems as man’s continual descent into a moral abyss is happening at a frightening pace. How much longer can the very patient Creator God let all of this go on?
How blessed are the members of God’s Church who have been given the priceless calling out of this sick world and the blessing of such knowledge of the future that God has in store for us!
In just over a month’s time we will have the wonderful opportunity to keep the Feast of Trumpets about which the world knows nothing and, therefore, will ignore, but which we understand foreshadows the return of Christ to set up the Kingdom of God on earth (Our new booklet “The Meaning of God’s Fall Holy Days,” which is enclosed for readers in the USA and Canada, explains this in detail). This is not a Jewish feast but it is one of the “feasts of the LORD” (Leviticus 23:2). We were never promised an easy ride and mockers were predicted at the end time (Jude 18). But the joy of knowing that this marvelous event cannot be that far away should be a thrilling experience and one that we should look forward to with all our heart. The words of Jesus in Luke 12:32 say it all: “Do not fear, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.”
All the signs of our generation indicate that this event is not too far away! Keep watching! Be ready! Jesus Christ will indeed return to this earth—just as He promised!
With Christian love,