The Lamp of Prophecy
The Lamp of Prophecy
1. All Signs Point-To What?
We are living in very remarkable times. Even statesmen of the world recognize this. We seem to be at the converging of the ages; one era appears to be closing and another already beginning. Apart from divine revelation, no man can tell what the next age holds in store for the human race. But any man or woman who has learned to accept the Holy Scriptures as divinely inspired finds here, in God's blessed Book, the key that solves the mystery, finds here a complete revelation concerning the times in which we live and the period that is to follow, which will be ushered in by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our gathering together unto Him. Everything shows that we are rapidly nearing the end of the present dispensation.
A Threefold Cord
The Scripture says: "A threefold cord is not quickly broken" (Ecclesiastes 4:12). There is a threefold cord that we shall do well to consider. It is what Scripture predicts will take place immediately before the coming of the Lord; first, in connection with the church of God , then with the Gentile nations and, lastly, with the people of Israel. If we saw conditions prevailing in the church such as Scripture predicts will prevail before the coming of our Lord, but saw no such conditions in Israel or among the Gentile nations, we might well think there was considerable time to elapse before the closing of this age; or if we were to see fulfilled certain conditions predicted concerning the church and concerning Israel, and yet others in regard to the Gentile nations still unfulfilled, we might well say, "My Lord delayeth His coming." But when we see everything moving on in exact accord with Scripture in these three spheres, we may be sure that the end is near.
We see the church drifting into deeper and deeper apostasy. We see Israel already gathering back to the Land of Palestine, not by two and threes, but by tens of thousands. And we see prevailing over there conditions such as the Word declares will prevail immediately before the coming of our Lord. Then we look out upon the Gentile nations and see the various combinations predicted in Scripture already forming before our eyes. We see the great hordes of Slavic people banding together, as predicted in Ezekiel 38 and 39; we see the Roman nations entering into an alliance for the restoration of the Roman power; and we see movements of the kingdoms of the eastern countries getting ready for the Battle of Armageddon. All is moving on in exact accord with the sure word of prophecy, so we may be very certain that it will not be long before we shall hear the voice of the archangel, the shout of the Lord, and the trump of God , and we who are redeemed by the Blood of Christ will rise to meet the Saviour.
Broken Lines of Separation
Let us look particularly at one line of prediction, one prediction uttered by our blessed Lord Himself in regard to the end times. He said solemnly in the twenty-fourth chapter of Matthew, where He was telling of the signs that would prevail before His coming: "As the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, and knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be."
What characterized those days of Noah? Were they days of great revival? Were they days of great awakening and of wonderful conviction? Nothing of the kind! They were days of fearful apostasy, days when men had turned away from the revelation divinely given after the fall of man in Eden's Garden. They were days, too, of brilliant achievement. I think this is implied in the words used elsewhere, "They planted, they builded.