Today’s World; Its Character and Climax
Eric Parmenter, Honiton, England
The problems of the world today are greater than they have ever been in the past, yet all ate symptomatic of one basic disease: sin. A state of revolt is found in almost every sphere of society, and lawlessness abounds on every hand.
REBELLION IN THE THEOLOGICAL REALM
The hypothesis of evolution robs many of confidence in the Bible, and has stolen from others the sense of the reality and "personal characters of an eternal and almighty God. Professed teachers of religion question Jesus Christ as the Son of God. Ecclesiastics deny the virgin birth of Jesus, and His bodily resurrection. They pour scorn on the biblical account of the nativity. Creation is discounted as myth. No longer do they confess the deity of Christ, nor do they accept the truth of His atoning death. Any suggestion of eternal punishment and an eternal hell are vigorously resisted.
REBELLION IN THE SPIRITUAL REALM
Insidiously the allurements and deceptions of Eastern religions, psychic research, astrology and materialism have penetrated the masses of Europe. Sorceries, magical arts, drugs and the invocation of spiritual agencies are practised in schools, colleges and universities. Dreadful atrocities are committed under the influence of life-destructive drugs and alcohol.
We are seeing an unprecedented widespread advancement of Satan worship. Satanism gives permission' to exercise every desire and satisfy every lust. Professing enlightenment and liberty, evil men have become darkened in their philosophies and enslaved in their self-pleasing and sin. Rejecting the light of divine revelation they recede into a darkness as heathenish and immoral as that of the ancient world. Multitudes pay attention to deceitful spirits and the doctrines of demons as the Bible predicted they would at the end of the age.
REBELLION IN THE MORALITY REALM
The deluge of pornography, homosexuality, fornication and adultery is being felt all around the world. Drugs, horror films and occult practices, influence and promote immoral conduct. Fornication is embracing all forms of lewdness. Marriage is no longer recognized as a necessary institution in modern society.
REBELLION IN THE BIOLOGICAL REALM
Artificial insemination, and its ongoing research is rebellion against the laws of nature and the Creator. We are seeing and will continue to see an increased interference in the biological sphere. Not only are abortions carried out every day, but the menopause cycle can be by-passed, enabling women who are naturally past child bearing age to have children. The recent cloning of sheep paves the way for experiments on humans, and attracts vast media interest and debate.
REBELLION IN THE DISCIPLINE REALM
Discipline in the home can be challenged by children in the courts. The results of this are felt in our schools, and teachers can no longer enforce discipline. Crime on our streets is beyond the control of the police - brutal assaults regularly take place, and mere boys are convicted muggers and murderers.
Sin is the great tragedy of God's universe. Its day of reckoning is coming. God could not be a righteous God and fail to judge sin. All sin, hidden and secret, will be searched out and judged by the scorching flames of His wrath Christ will execute vengeance on 'them that (willfully) know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ; who shall be punished with everlasting destruction ... when he shall come', 2 Thess 1. 8-10.
Christ has a score to settle with the nations. Tyranny, oppression, cruelty and kindred national sins must be brought into judgement. Pollution, filth and oppression; infidelity and departure from God; cruel rulers, plundering judges, treacherous prophets, hypocritical priests; all describe the moral, political, and religious state of the nations. When Christ returns, He will send plague and panic upon and among the armies surrounding Jerusalem. Soldiers will turn upon each other to their own destruction. Jerusalem will be delivered, and the Jews who are left will look on Christ their deliverer, whom they once pierced and nailed to the cross, and they will mourn for Him.
The judgement of the nations will fake place in the Valley of Jehosphaphat, which runs between Jerusalem and the Mount of Olives. Christ's throne will be set up on Olivet. The converted Jews will be called to stand by His side, the Gentile people will be massed before Him in the valley. The criteria for judgement will be according to each one's treatment of the Jews. Those who pass the test will be made to stand on the King's right hand. They are the righteous and are called the 'sheep' and possessing eternal life will enjoy the kingdom. Those who fail the test are called 'goats'. They were enemies of the Jews and are taken away in judgement, their destiny decided by their attitude to the Jewish people and the messengers of Christ. By careful distribution of all things under the administration of Christ, the world will never know shortage and starvation again. Open rebellion during the reign of Christ will be met with swift judgement on its perpetrators. After the thousand years of righteous rule, Satan will be released. Then, from the four quarters of the earth, all who only feigned obedience to Christ the king, will be gathered under Satan's banner to attack Jerusalem the beloved city, the millennial capital. This final revolt will be met with sudden fire from God out of heaven to their total destruction. Then will be established a New Heaven and New Earth, and God will tabernacle with men forever (Bible references, Zechariah 14; Matthew 25; Revelation 20).