How will you know if the end of the world is near?
Is there a way to be sure?
It’s been predicted quite a few times. The prediction dates came…and went…
And nothing happened.
Then why do so many people think the end of the world is near?
Because the Bible has an amazing, perfect record of foretelling future events –and it clearly tells us to watch for the end.
And this is not by accident. God rightly boasts about his foreknowledge:
“Who among them can declare this,
and show us the former things?”–Isaiah 43:9, ESV
Why does the Bible have a perfect record of prophecy –a perfect record of foretelling future events? Because the God of the Bible has a clear view of all things, past, present and future. He created time, space, energy and matter and understands them all perfectly.
Since God Created time, his existence is outside of –and independent of time. This means that all time is stretched out before him, and he can see past, present and future with perfect clarity.
The Bible accurately told of events in advance -such as the captivity of Israel (foretold in Deuteronomy and fulfilled in the books of Jeremiah and Daniel) and the birth of the Messiah in Bethlehem (foretold in Micah 5:2 and fulfilled in Luke 2:4).
The Bible has a lot to say about events that are soon to come. These Bible prophecies have been hidden for centuries in plain sight. They’ve been hidden on the pages of the Bible.
We know that people in the past used their Bible knowledge to anticipate events they knew were foretold. And that knowledge was profitable to them. It could be profitable for you to know, too.
Would you like to know about the events that lead to the end of the world before it happens?
The End of the World in the Bible
Much has written about the end times. And people have set dates on multiple occasions. Their dates were wrong every time.
And they should have known better, because Jesus clearly said that nobody would know the day or the hour. (Matthew 24:36)
In recent history, a group called the Millerites in 1844 had an experience known as The Great Disappointment. William Miller had told his followers Jesus was coming on October 22nd of that year. October 22nd came and went just as any other day.
There were as many as 100,000 disappointed Millerites.
Later the Jehovah’s Witnesses –a Millerite splinter group– came along with predictions of the ending of the world in 1878, 1881, 1914 and 1918. And again in 1925 and 1975.
But that wasn’t enough. Along came the Y2K hysteria in the year 2000. Then there was Harold Camping –who gave multiple dates in the early 2010’s.
And the Mayan calendar phenomenon in 2012.
There have been many predictions of the End of the World.
So why should we trust the Bible after so many failed predictions?
Here’s why. So far, they’ve all ignored the simple words of Jesus Christ on this subject when he said: “But concerning that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father only.” (Matthew 24:36).
So why did so many people –people who should know- try to set dates? It’s just so clear and obvious that nobody should be setting dates for the end of the world.
Is it obvious to you?
But Jesus said some other things about the end of the world. Very compelling things.
He said we should “watch and pray.” And he said we should “learn from the fig tree.” The fig tree is a symbol of Israel from Hosea 9:10.
What did he mean by this? While we might not know the day or the hour, we are commanded to keep watch, like the 5 wise virgins of Matthew 25:1-13, because the end could come much sooner –or possibly even later- than we anticipate.
Its interesting Jesus told us to learn from the fig tree. Every student of the Bible –at some point- learns that in the Bible the fig tree represents Israel. And Israel –above anything else- lies at the center of the End Times.
Jesus himself prophesied the destruction of the temple in Jerusalem. He uttered the words around AD 32, and the temple was destroyed in AD 70. Then the Israeli people were scattered all over the world.
Is the End of the World Near?
Israel became a nation again, and now has been a nation since May 14, 1948 (That’s 5 Iyer 5708 on the Hebrew calendar). For nearly 1900 years, the Jewish people had had no nation to call their own, and no land of their own.
But –way back when- many students of the Bible knew Israel would once again be inhabited by the Jewish people.
Because of Bible prophecy. Regarding the return of Israel, it’s all the way back in one of the earliest books of the Bible in Deuteronomy 30:1-5. But that’s not all. It’s also in Ezekiel 20:41-42, 37:12 , Jeremiah 29:14 and Isaiah 11:11-12.
And it’s important. Because in order for the world to end, the Jewish people must inhabit their homeland.
Approximately 30% of the Bible is prophecy. This means the Bible has foretold many things in advance. Many people through the years have been able to benefit from this knowledge.
The great prophet Daniel from the Old Testament –aware of Jeremiah’s prophecy- knew the Israelites would be held captive for 70 years. Centuries later, the Wise Men (the Magi) from the East knew to find the Christ child through the wisdom that had been passed down from Daniel.
When the Wise Men (Matthew 2:1-12) asked King Herod where they could find the baby Messiah, the King asked the scribes what the scriptures said. Sure enough, they found the place where it was written that the Messiah would be born in Bethlehem:
“But you, O Bethlehem Ephrathah,
who are too little to be among the clans of Judah,
from you shall come forth for me
one who is to be ruler in Israel,
whose coming forth is from of old,
from ancient days.” Micah 5:2, ESV
The Bible has a perfect record of prophecy. But many folks fail to understand it. It takes time and effort to study and understand.
When Will the World End?
The first question to ask is “what is the status of Israel? …Because the world will not come to an end unless Israel in her homeland.
Nobody knows exactly when the world will end. But we can know approximately when.
Jesus said no one would know the day or the hour.
So there’s no use trying to pick a day. But what if you could know the signs of the end are near?
Jesus Christ clearly tells us (Matthew 24:36) we cannot know the day or the hour of his return. But we are also told to be watchful and know the signs. We are warned to have enough oil for our lamps like the wise virgins and we are reminded that the Bereans searched the scriptures (Acts 17:11) to see if the teaching was true.
Jesus also told us that we would know the season of his return –just as you know from the fig tree that summer is near (Matthew 24:32-35).
And he said “learn the lesson of the fig tree.” That was a command to the listener. It means we should know by watching the fig tree. And we know that the fig tree represents Israel in scripture. Since Israel has now budded like the fig tree and is back in the land promised to Abraham, we know the time is near.
Is the World Ending?
In order for the World to end, Israel must be a nation in her own territory. This happened on May 14th, 1948. But there are more boxes to check.
Israel must control the Temple Mount. Why? Because –according to the Bible- the third temple must be built. The first temple was destroyed in ~650 BC. The second temple was destroyed in AD 70. When will the 3rd temple be built? Based on the prophecies in the Bible, it seems it will happen quite soon. (See Matthew 24:15, 2 Thessalonians 2:3-4, Revelation 11:1-2)
Since Israel currently has no temple, the world cannot end yet. The 3rd temple must be built in order for the “man of sin” of 2Thessalonians 2:3-4 to be revealed.
But since the Temple Institute is actively campaigning for the building of the 3rd temple, and since they have already made extensive preparations for the building of the temple, it could happen very soon.
The Temple Institute has made a Menorah just for the 3rd temple: https://www.templeinstitute.org/history-holy-temple-menorah-1.htm
And here is a virtual reality video of the new temple:
What is the End of the World?
While we’re at it, what exactly do we mean by “the end of the world?”
We are talking first about the end of the world political, economic and moral system. Jesus Christ will come to judge the current system of man and deal with this Christ-rejecting world. At a later time, Jesus Christ will create a new heaven and a new earth, as depicted in Revelation 21.
Remember, “God did not send his Son into to the world to condemn the world, but that the world should be saved through him.” (John 3:17, NET) This refers to his first advent. But we also know a time will come (the Second Advent) when Jesus Christ returns to judge and rule according to his righteousness.
This then is the End of the World as we know it. It’s the end of this current system of man. It’s not the end of the physical world. Not yet.
We need to define what we mean by “world.” When the Bible says “world” in this case, it means the people Jesus came to love and die for and redeem and call his own. It’s clear, because it says “the world should be saved through him.” And before that, in verse 16, he said “God so loved the world.” So we are talking about the people Jesus died to save.
In other places, it refers to the physical world, or the earth. When Revelation 21 is fulfilled, it will be the end of the current heaven and earth. They will be replaced by a new heaven and a new earth.
25 Reasons the End of the World is Near
- God promised Abraham a great nation would come from him –even after Sarah was too old to give birth. God also promised Abraham (Genesis 12:2) his name would be made great. And today billions of Jews, Christians and Muslims revere Abraham. Later, God promised Israel they would always remain a nation, and later promised they would return to their homeland after being expelled. In spite of being without a homeland for nearly 2000 years, Israel remained a nation.
- Israel has returned to their homeland. After nearly 2000 years, the Jewish people have returned to their homeland exactly in accordance with Bible prophecy. Ezekiel 37, the passage known as “The Valley of the Dry Bones” clearly tells of a time when the Jewish people have returned to their homeland after suffering tragic losses and losing all hope. This was fulfilled in 1948 when Israel became a nation right after the holocaust –the worst ethnic mass murder in history.
- In the Ezekiel 37:21-22 we learn that the Jewish people would return to their homeland “from all around” the earth. To date, Israel marks nearly every nation on earth as a source for Jewish immigrants into Israel.
- Also in Ezekiel 37:21-22, we learn Israel will no longer be a divided nation as they had become after the reign of Solomon. According to Ezekiel, upon their return, God promised “And I will make them one nation in the land, on the mountains of Israel. And one king shall be king over them all, and they shall be no longer two nations, and no longer divided into two kingdoms.” What’s even more amazing is that this prophecy was written around 700 BC and the fulfillment wasn’t until AD 1948.
- When the Jewish people returned to the land of Israel, they inhabited the mountains in particular –in accordance with the prophecy in Ezekiel 38:8. And today the Jewish people continue to control the higher elevations in Israel, which are of strategic military importance.
- Jerusalem is under Israeli control, which must happen if the temple is to be rebuilt. Israeli forces captured Jerusalem in 1967 during the 6-Day War and it is now part of Israel.
- The Jewish people returned to a land that was described as desolate and uninhabited, having been destroyed by war. Mark Twain –a self-described skeptic of all things spiritual- on his trip to this land in 1867, described it in exactly those terms in his book The Innocents Abroad.
- Mark Twain himself –as well as others- unwittingly fulfilled Deuteronomy 29:22-24 (“Your children who follow you in later generations and foreigners who come from distant lands will see the calamities that have fallen on the land and the diseases with which the Lord has afflicted it. The whole land will be a burning waste of salt and sulfur—nothing planted, nothing sprouting, no vegetation growing on it.”)
- The land of Israel is the same land that God mentioned when he told Abraham to “go to the land I will show you” in Genesis 12:1-3.
- Jerusalem will be trampled on by the gentiles until the times of the gentiles are fulfilled. This prophecy –from Luke 21:24- tells us of a time when Jerusalem will return to Jewish control. That time came in 1967 when the Israeli army took back the city of Jerusalem.
- The War of Gog and Magog. Nations have aligned around Israel in alignment with prophecies written anywhere from 2000-2700 years ago. Never in world history has this alignment of nations been seen. And it is in uncanny compliance with the Biblical text. Iran (Persia) is directly named as an aggressor against Israel in Ezekiel 38, but before 1978, Iran was Israel’s friend and ally, even coming to her aid in the Yom Kippur War of 1973. Similarly, Turkey (the “Gomer” of Ezekiel 38) was a friend of Israel until 2010. Russia (mentioned as Meshech and Tubal) and Iran are already in Syria on Israel’s doorstep. Russia remains “friendly” to Israel as of this writing. But for how long? Other nations that were formerly against Israel have turned and become allies, almost as if they are trying to align with the prophecy. Saudi Arabia –formerly an avowed enemy that attacked Israel- is now aligned with Israel against their mutual enemy Iran. Read Ezekiel 38 here.
- One-World Religion as depicted in Revelation 13:11-18. The original one-world religion was seen at the Tower of Babel, where men built the tower to make a name for themselves by reaching the heavens with their own efforts. Modern man has spent the last few decades reviving the old pagan religions that will be part of the new One World Religion. It’s a religion based on man’s own efforts –renouncing any faith in the True God.
- One World Government. Ever since the establishment of the United Nations and the European Union, the advance toward a unified World Government has been evident, in accordance with Revelation 13:1-10.
- The rise of Anti-Semitism. Did you think our world learned a lesson about the evil of the Holocaust? Was it so horrifying that it could never happen again? Well, think again. Anti-Jewish sentiment has been heating up in many places. It has recently become very bad in certain parts of Europe. It has even begun to rise again in America, where Jews have been relatively safe for centuries. Some call this new wave of attacks “the new normal.”
- The End will be a time when people will refuse to follow Knowledge, and return to myths, fables and ancient legends (see 2 Timothy 4:4) instead of the knowledge that has been accumulated through the scientific pursuits of mankind for centuries. Science tells us –for example- that all humans come in just two sexes- male and female. It’s a fact that has been observed and studied and accepted, through DNA analysis –including an at-home test an expectant mother can take to determine her baby’s gender with 99.1% accuracy. Every student learns in a high school biology class that females have the XX chromosome and males have XY. Yet, a large and growing number of people reject the obvious truth.
- Children will disobey their parents. In 2 Timothy 3, verses 1-9, we see what the End of the Age will look like. This passage tells us that children will disrespect their parents, that people will become boastful and proud and arrogant, heartless, and more –just as we have been seeing in our culture for many years.
- Lawlessness will increase and the love of many will grow cold (Matt 24:12). We see this happening in many ways. In America, even our own lawmakers are breaking the same laws they made just a few years ago.
- Jewish people are coming to faith in their Messiah –Jesus Christ- like never before. There are more Jewish believers proclaiming the gospel of Jesus Christ than has ever been seen. And these are remarkable cutting-edge world-changing ministries that explain the Christian faith to a new generation like no other ministries. Here’s the short list of Messianic Jews boldly proclaiming the true faith to a hurting world : Michael Brown https://askdrbrown.org, Jonathan Cahn, Ray Comfort, Joel Rosenberg, Kurt Schneider of Discovering the Jewish Jesus, James Jacob Prasch of Moriel Ministries, Sid Roth, Jonathan Bernis, Jay Sekulow (ACLJ), Andrew Klavan and others. By their presence, these Jewish believers are evidence of the fulfillment of Deuteronomy 30:1-10 and the prophecy of natural olive branch being re-grafted into the tree according to Romans 11:11-24. You can read more about it here.
- The building of the 3rd temple in Jerusalem. In order for the Antichrist to claim to be God in the temple in Jerusalem in accordance with the Book of Revelation, a 3rd temple must be built. This fact is implied by the passage, yet currently no temple exists. In fact, there has been no temple on the temple mount in Jerusalem since 70 A.D –almost 2000 years ago. The Temple Society has been preparing for the day when it becomes politically acceptable to rebuild the temple. The Society has drawn up plans, raised money, has already built the temple furniture, and trained the priests to be ready to perform all the temple ceremonies and functions. When will the temple be built? It could happen as suddenly as the relocation of the US Embassy to Jerusalem occurred in 2017.
- Speaking of the US Embassy, it was relocated to Jerusalem exactly 50 years after the liberation of Jerusalem by Israeli forces in 1967. In the Old Testament, there was a Jubilee every 50 years, where property could be returned to its rightful owner. And it came almost exactly 70 years after Israel became a nation in 1947. 70 years is the number of perfect completion in the OT. Is this a coincidence? Or is God working it out according to his divine plan?
- The Gospel of Jesus Christ (see Mark 13) is being preached to all nations. There are now very few unreached people groups left. The Bible has been translated into thousands of languages, and the US Center for World Missions projects that The Great Commission will be fulfilled within a decade. And this fulfillment is one of the Signs of the End of the Age.
- Earthquakes in various diverse places. In Mark 13:8, Jesus tells his disciples of some events that will take place just before the end, including earthquakes in diverse places. In recent years, “fracking” has caused earthquakes in places that rarely had natural earthquakes. Is this what Jesus meant?
- Nation will rise against nation. Also in Mark 13:8. In recent decades, there has been a constant stream of wars and rumors of wars like never before.
- The military alliance between Russia and Iran that was prophesied in Ezekiel 38 and fulfilled in the early 2000’s.
- The Mark of the Beast. Revelation 13 tells us that a time will come when every person will have a mark on their forehead or their right hand that will be required by the world ruler. The technology for this was already developed years ago as bar codes, chips, even invisible laser markings. The high-speed computer technology is already available and governments and corporations are already capable of infringing the rights of their citizens with these technologies.
Know When the World Will End
One thing we can be certain of. The End of Days will be a very fascinating time. It already is. Israel will go through a lot of trying times, but according to the prophecy of Amos 9:14-15, once Israel returns, it will never be uprooted again.
When the Antichrist’s brief reign of terror ends, Jesus Christ will return and set everything straight. He will reign over this earth for 1000 years during a period called the Millennium. Men will beat their spears into plowshares, and the lion will lie down with the kid. The earth will finally be a peaceful place and righteousness will abound.
Is your Faith Founded on Fact? Have you committed to follow Jesus?
Every Prophecy of the Bible
Bible Questions, Elmer Towns