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Politics & Prophecy: A Lawyer’s View of the End Times
Part 4 – The Conquest of Evil
by Gerald R. Thompson
I know how all of this looks. Demon hordes roaming the earth to torture and kill people. The divine slaughter of billions of people (at least half the total world population) in only 3½ years. The oceans and rivers turned to blood. An earthquake that levels everything, both natural and man-made, on the whole earth. Prophets performing signs and wonders in full public view. And a battle – the biggest and baddest ever – between good and evil played out in real life.
But we’re just getting started. Jerusalem will be sacked – that’s to be expected. But it will lead to the building of a Third Temple. The Temple will first be desecrated and profaned, then made the capital of the world. The Jews will be regathered and restored in an unprecedented way. Peace will finally come to the Mideast. And the Jews en masse will eventually accept Jesus as their Messiah. But only when the evil pretender to the throne is locked away in a bottomless pit.
An unlikely world empire will arise again from the ash heap of history and surprise many. It will lead the way for the worldwide persecution of Jews and Christians. It will force allegiance on all people and behead those who refuse. But the evil empire will be divided and it will turn on itself in part, destroying its most sacred city. Its leaders will be from the pit of hell, yet no man can depose them. But all of this is a mere prelude to strangeness.
People will be resurrected from the dead in an instant. Jesus will return visibly to the earth and rule it for 1,000 years. There will be one worldwide religion (Christianity – who knew?), and one worldwide government – a total theocracy. For believers, a time of unparalleled peace and prosperity. For unbelievers, a time of unbelievable frustration. After a brief and final rebellion, an eternity of dwelling with God in His holy mountain of a city for believers, and an eternity of darkness and suffering on some distant otherworld for unbelievers.
It’s all a bit much, isn’t it? Who can comprehend such things? How can the unthinkable become reality? From where we sit right now, it all seems too fantastic to be even possible. It is the stuff of science fiction, not even remotely similar to all of human history so far.
Yet, I suggest, it is exactly where the words of the Bible take us, if taken literally where not clearly symbolic. Do you believe God will make good on His promise to give you eternal life? Well, then this is how He is going to do it. Not gradually, but suddenly.
I suppose that is why both postmillennialism and amillennialism have many strong adherents. Both of those schools of thought defer most of the end times events to the distant future. Amills deny any physical kingdom of Christ and think the Tribulation and Second Coming will end history, so in practical terms everything in history will continue indefinitely pretty much as it is now. What is normal now will be normal indefinitely. What’s to worry?
Postmills first allocate many end times events to the past, and therefore they do not have to worry about them changing what the future will look like. To the extent things do change, it will be because people bring about the changes gradually as they yield more to Christ, so we will have plenty of time to adjust. Again, no sudden changes to worry about, and in the long run, those changes will be positive, not negative.
What I have suggested is much more jarring. People don’t like to be jarred. Maybe you don’t like to be jarred. But that isn’t the question. The question is, will God shake things up suddenly in order to bring them to a conclusion? Is God a go along, get along kind of guy, or is He a mover and a shaker? What does the scripture say? “Therefore I will make the heavens tremble, and the earth will be shaken out of its place, at the wrath of the Lord of hosts in the day of his fierce anger.” Isa. 13:13. “Yet once more I will shake not only the earth but also the heavens.” Heb. 12:26-28. See also Hag. 2:6, 7, 21.
“And there will be signs in sun and moon and stars, and on the earth distress of nations in perplexity because of the roaring of the sea and the waves, people fainting with fear and with foreboding of what is coming on the world. For the powers of the heavens will be shaken.” Lk 21:25-26.
Yeah, you might want to forget that whole I can wait until later to be concerned about biblical prophecy thing. And since you’ve read this far, you might want to tell your friends …
Previous: New Heavens and Earth; The New Jerusalem
Next: Appendix A – Biblical Prophecy Chart (Overview)
* Ver. 8.0. Copyright © 2013-2020 Gerald R. Thompson. All rights reserved. Used by permission. All Bible quotations are from the English Standard Version.