WHAT TIME IS IT?
By W. G. Guy
Since Jesus ascended into heaven, believers have been eagerly anticipating and looking forward to His promised return. Some have even tried to predict the timing of His return. A study of the Word of God can give us an indication or approximate the period of His coming. This is when the prophet Daniel did a study of scripture to determine the end of the seventy year Babylonian captivity of Israel.
It was in the study of what God revealed to Daniel that gives us an indication of when the end of this age is and the coming of Christ to set up His kingdom. Daniel is told by divine visitors who revealed coming events to him.
Daniel 12:6-7 – And one said to the man clothed in linen, which was upon the waters of the river, How long shall it be to the end of these wonders? And I heard the man clothed in linen, which was upon the waters of the river, when he held up his right hand and his left hand unto heaven, and sware by him that liveth for ever that it shall be for a time, times, and an half; and when he shall have accomplished to scatter the power of the holy people, all these things shall be finished.
Considering that a “time” could be a thousand years; and “times” to be considered as a second thousand years; and that “half a time” could be considered as five hundred years; you have a period of time that is twenty-five hundred years to the fulfillment of the current age, or the end. The thousand year designation comes from God’s point of time as being one millennial day.
2 Peter 3:8 – But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day
According to Bible chronology, Daniel received the above message from the Lord in approximately 537 B.C. When you add 2500 years you come to 2037 A.D. so we are getting close. No wonder we are beginning to see the events that Jesus foretold would precede His return.
Then there is another consideration that Jesus said:
Luke 21:24 & 31-32 – …..until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled. …..So likewise ye, when ye see these things come to pass, know ye that the kingdom of God is nigh at hand. Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass away, till all be fulfilled.
Note that times of the gentiles dominating Jerusalem ended in 1967 with the conclusion of the six day war. Since a generation is considered to be seventy years in the Bible, we add seventy years to 1967 and you come to 2037. Some speculate that the end of this age could come as soon as 2030 because Jesus said that unless those days were shortened there would no flesh survive.
Matthew 24:22 – And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect’s sake those days shall be shortened.
Jesus even tells us what signs to look for:
Luke 21:25-28 – And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring; men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken. And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh.
We are instructed by Jesus to look up in anticipation of seeing His return, and keeping your eyes toward heaven and not to focus on the evil, corruption and trials that are coming upon the whole earth. Jesus wants us to exercise self-control and to live as His representatives in these difficult and dangerous times, being the light of the world to those that are in need of Him. Be assured that He will be with us as we obey Him.
Luke 21:34-36 – And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares. For as a snare shall it come on all them that dwell on the face of the whole earth. Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.
Consider that from when God formed man from the dust of the earth until the coming of His kingdom is seven millennial days. The seventh millennial day is the Sabbath; the time of the thousand year reign of Christ who said that He is the Lord of the Sabbath.
Luke 6:5 – And he said unto them, That the Son of man is Lord also of the sabbath.
This is the time at the end of this age when Jesus comes to rule the earth and set up His kingdom. Thus we are looking at millennial days being a thousand years each. We are now coming to the end of the sixth millennial day, or almost seven thousand years since Adam. The next millennial day, the seventh, will soon be upon us; this means the return of Christ is near at hand.
We, who are discerning, are told that we will likely recognize the season of His return.
1 Thessalonians 5:1-5 – But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you. For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night. For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape. But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief. Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness.
No one knows the day or the hour; and this is for obvious reasons. There are 24 times zones in the earth as well as two different days at one time due to the International Time Zone. So God did not designate a day or an hour because it would be misunderstood throughout the 24 time zones. But we can know the season of His return. This will most likely be during the fall feasts of the Lord – Trumpets, Atonement and Tabernacles.
Trumpets are used to announce the coming of the King.
1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 – For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.
The feast of Trumpets is followed by the Day of Atonement: this is likely when Jesus presents His faithful to God the Father and declares that He made atonement for each individual. This is followed by the celebration of Tabernacles. This is when Jesus makes His residence on earth and tabernacles here for the thousand years as Lord of the Sabbath; the seventh millennial day.
So what time is it?
Romans 13:11-14 – And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed. The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light. Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying. But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof.
Evidence shows that time is short; are you ready for His return? Are you prepared to endure the tumultuous times that lie ahead as Jesus identified in Luke 21:25-28 above? You will need faith, and faithfulness (obedience), that will endure to the end - (Matthew 10:22).