Q. I’m not sure why, but it seems like things are falling apart more and more. I suppose it’s just politics that divide us?
A. Wherever we turn in the world today we do find tremendous upheaval as long trusted political systems are trusted no more. News agencies that were once highly esteemed, even revered, are respected no longer; but instead are mockingly labeled as “fake news.” The world’s entertainment industry has been badly shaken with scandal after scandal which has resulted in great humiliation for those exposed. But it doesn’t end there. Many accustomed to escaping the world’s troubles by turning to sports as a sort of refuge have seen their beloved sports teams and players and the outlets that cover them embroiled in multiple controversies. Even religion has been beset with turmoil as one of the world’s largest religions has had its reputation tarnished repeatedly by those who have engaged in terroristic acts in its name. And sadly, the chaotic division in the world is not only out there somewhere, but we also see societal division practically everywhere we look, often in our own families. What’s going on? Perhaps this will surprise you, but the answer to this question is found in the Bible. The Bible speaks of a time when the world will be divided like it has never been divided before. The time of great division occurs during Judgment Day.
Ezekiel 38: 21-22 And I will call for a sword against him throughout all my mountains, saith the Lord GOD: every man's sword shall be against his brother.
22 And … I will rain upon him, and upon his bands, and upon the many people that are with him, an overflowing rain, and great hailstones, fire, and brimstone.
Zechariah 14:13 And it shall come to pass in that day, that a great tumult from the LORD shall be among them; and they shall lay hold every one on the hand of his neighbour, and his hand shall rise up against the hand of his neighbour.
Q. Huh, Judgment Day? Are you saying that Judgment Day is almost here?
No. Actually, the Bible has revealed the fact that Judgment Day has already come. Perhaps you remember hearing about the date of May 21, 2011 proclaimed to the world several years ago? The Bible insists that that proclamation was correct. Which means that God has been judging the world from that time until now. And the Bible also indicates that this prolonged judgment period will continue for several more years very possibly until the year 2033 AD.
Q. What? You can’t be serious. You think that just because the world is divided right now that it means it’s Judgment Day?
A. It’s the other way around. It’s not Judgment Day because the world is divided; but the world’s divided because it is Judgment Day. And God’s program of judgment calls for the division of Satan’s kingdom--that is, the division of this world:
Matthew 12:25 Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation; and every city or house divided against itself shall not stand:
Mark 3:24-26 And if a kingdom be divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand. And if a house be divided against itself, that house cannot stand. And if Satan rise up against himself, and be divided, he cannot stand, but hath an end.
Notice the phrase, “cannot stand,” is used repeatedly in these Scriptures. God, who wrote the Bible, selects His words with great precision. We see similar language in a few other places:
Revelation 6: 17 For the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand?
Psalm 1:5 Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous.
The kingdom of Satan, which consists of all the unsaved people of the world, will fall in the time of the final judgment. The division of Satan’s house will not allow them to stand in the judgment.
Q. You said that this world was Satan’s kingdom? Look, I agree there’s a lot of ugliness out there in the world, but I wouldn’t go so far as to call the world “Satan’s kingdom”.
A. Unfortunately, that’s the way the Bible describes it. Satan, by deceiving Adam and Eve back in the garden of Eden, won by right of conquest man’s servitude to himself and to sin. And it was due to winning the right to rule over unsaved mankind that he was able to offer Jesus all the world’s kingdoms:
Luke 4:5-6 And the devil, … shewed unto him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time. And the devil said unto him, All this power will I give thee, and the glory of them: for that is delivered unto me; and to whomsoever I will I give it.
Satan could legitimately offer to give all the kingdoms of the world to Christ because he ruled over them since the garden of Eden.
Q. I don’t know, the idea of Satan ruling the world sounds strange to me.
A. Well, as a matter of fact, he is no longer ruling the world at this time. Once the Lord Jesus Christ came as Judge of mankind (beginning May 21, 2011), He deposed Satan from all official rule and Jesus took over his kingdom. The Lord Jesus is presently ruling the world during this prolonged period of judgment upon it. The Bible gives us an historical parable of the king of Babylon and the fall of his kingdom in order to illustrate this grand truth. First, we find that the king of Babylon is a figure or representation of the devil:
Isaiah 14:4 That thou shalt take up this proverb against the king of Babylon, …
Isaiah 14:12-14 How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: … I will be like the most High.
THE WORLD IS FALLEN! IS FALLEN!
It was the king of Babylon and his nation that destroyed the land of Judah and took many of the Jews captive into Babylon. After an awful period of seventy years (which typified the great tribulation) Babylon was conquered by the Medes and the Persians. The fall of Babylon at that time pointed to the fall of Satan and of the world at the time of the end. It is for this reason that the Bible has a great deal to say about the fall of Babylon:
Jeremiah 51: 7-8 Babylon hath been a golden cup in the LORD's hand, that made all the earth drunken: the nations have drunken of her wine; therefore the nations are mad. Babylon is suddenly fallen and destroyed:
Isaiah 21:9 … Babylon is fallen, is fallen; and all the graven images of her gods he hath broken unto the ground.
Revelation 14:8 And there followed another angel, saying, Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great city, because she made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication.
Based on the context of Revelation 14, we see that Babylon’s fall is figurative language describing the fall of the world during the time of its final judgment. Revelation 14:10 The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; We also read of Babylon’s fall in chapter 18:
Revelation 18:2 … Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and is become the habitation of devils, and the hold of every foul spirit, and a cage of every unclean and hateful bird.
Wherever we find the refrain, “Babylon is fallen, is fallen,” we can paraphrase this to mean, “The world is fallen, is fallen!” or, “Judgment Day is here! Judgment Day is here!” In a remarkable verse, the Lord ties Babylon in with the fall of all unsaved people in the world:
Jeremiah 51:49 As Babylon hath caused the slain of Israel to fall, so at Babylon shall fall the slain of all the earth.
Therefore, Babylon’s fall is synonymous with the world’s fall. Obviously, once Babylon fell it meant she could no longer stand. Division brings about the fall of a house; division brings about the fall of a kingdom. Satan’s kingdom of this world has fallen. And the outward evidence of this fall can be seen in the division of the world all around us.
THE WRITING ON THE WALL: THY KINGDOM IS DIVIDED
In a very interesting way, God describes in the Bible the very night in which the king of Babylon (type of Satan) was slain and his kingdom fell. At that time king Belshazzar saw some mysterious writing on a wall. It troubled him so greatly that his knees began to knock against each other. Finally, the faithful man of God, Daniel, was called to come and interpret the writing on the wall:
Daniel 5:25-28 And this is the writing that was written, MENE, MENE, TEKEL, UPHARSIN. This is the interpretation of the thing: MENE; God hath numbered thy kingdom, and finished it. TEKEL; Thou art weighed in the balances, and art found wanting. PERES; Thy kingdom is divided, and given to the Medes and Persians.
Daniel 5:30-31 In that night was Belshazzar the king of the Chaldeans slain. And Darius the Median took the kingdom, … In one night, the king of Babylon met his end and had his kingdom DIVIDED. In that night the king of the Medes and the Persians took Babylon. Therefore the Bible pictures Darius (also known as “Cyrus”) as a type of Christ coming as a thief in the night. We know for certain Darius (Cyrus) was a type of Christ due to what is said about him in the book of Isaiah:
Isaiah 44:28 That saith of Cyrus, He is my shepherd, and … saying to Jerusalem, Thou shalt be built; and to the temple, Thy foundation shall be laid.
Cyrus (Darius) is called God’s shepherd. And,
Isaiah 45:1 Thus saith the LORD to his anointed, to Cyrus,
He is also called God’s anointed. The word translated as “anointed” is the same word translated as “Messiah” in the book of Daniel. There’s no doubt that Cyrus is a picture of Christ coming as a thief to judge Satan and this world in the Day of Judgment. After conquering it Cyrus then divides the kingdom of Babylon. In a curious way, the Lord Jesus once referred to Himself as a “divider” as He answered a man that wanted Him to settle a dispute over an matter of inheritance with his brother:
Luke 12:13-14 And one of the company said unto him, Master, speak to my brother, that he divide the inheritance with me. And he said unto him, Man, who made me a judge or a divider over you?
What’s interesting about Jesus’ statement is that He ties together the words JUDGE and DIVIDER. We know from the Bible that Christ is the Judge of this world. And we’re now learning that He is also the Divider of Satan’s kingdom of this world.
Q. Are you saying, that Jesus Christ is ruling the world right now?
A. That’s correct. The Bible is declaring that Jesus Christ is presently ruling this world in the Day of Judgment:
Revelation 11:15 And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ;
Revelation 19:15 And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God.
Q. If Jesus is ruling the world wouldn’t things be wonderful for everyone rather than so bad like it’s been?
A. Jesus is not ruling the world in a benevolent way. He’s not ruling for the good or benefit of unsaved people. The Bible says He’s ruling with a rod of iron because He’s the Righteous Judge that is punishing mankind for transgressing His holy law, the Bible. The punishment involves exposing the world’s sins which results in their public humiliation. In other words, at this time Jesus is actively working to bring ridicule and mockery to all facets of the world’s institutions.
Isaiah 47:1 Come down, and sit in the dust, O virgin daughter of Babylon…: there is no throne, … for thou shalt no more be called tender and delicate.
Isaiah 47:3 Thy nakedness shall be uncovered, … thy shame … seen: I will take vengeance, and I will not meet thee as a man.
As man has mocked God and His Word, so the Lord turns the tables and mocks man during his final end:
Proverbs 1:25-26 But ye have set at nought all my counsel, and would none of my reproof: I also will laugh at your calamity; I will mock when your fear cometh;
Q. You make Jesus sound cruel and vengeful. I thought He was supposed to be kind and gentle?
A. He is kind and gentle. But He is also the Just Judge of mankind. And as Judge He is exacting righteous vengeance upon the breakers of His law and upon those that have shed the blood of His elect people:
John 5:27 And hath given him authority to execute judgment also, because he is the Son of man.
Romans 12: 19 … Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.
2 Thessalonians 1:7-8 … the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ:
Q. This sounds all bad. Is there no good news?
A. There is good news for those that God saved prior to the date of May 21, 2011. Those people were saved through hearing the Bible and have been left on the earth to go through this grievous period of the world’s judgment. These (elect) people have been left on the earth in order to make an appearance before Christ’s judgment seat:
2 Corinthians 5: 10 … For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ;
Those Christ has saved will not have any sin found in them and therefore will endure all the way to the end.
Matthew 24: 13 But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.
Unlike the unsaved people of the earth, the elect children of God will endure the judgment process (spiritual fire) until its completion and then finally enter into the wonderful new heaven and new earth as God has promised them.
Zechariah 13:8-9 … in all the land, saith the LORD, two parts therein shall be cut off and die; but the third shall be left therein. And I will bring the third part through the fire, and will refine them as silver is refined, and will try them as gold is tried: … I will say, It is my people: and they shall say, The LORD is my God.
It is not a pleasant thing to go through but certainly well worth it since at the end God’s elect people will finally enter into eternity and into the joy of their Lord.
Matthew 25:23 His lord said unto him, Well done, good and faithful servant; thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.