It is a common site to look up into the sky on any given day and see several planes racing across the sky to reach their destination. Hardly a day goes by when watching the news we hear of a new scientific or medical brake through. Spanning the last one hundred and fifty years the world has experienced advances in world politics, social and cultural development, flight, space travel, airwave technology, DNA mapping, stem cell research and much more on an exponential level. In the 1860’s during the civil war, weapon development played a prominent roll as men advanced from rifle to canon expansion. In the 1900’s we saw the birth of the modern age, towns grew into cities with its sky scrapers reaching heights never before imagined. What became alarming was the rapid increase of modern warfare and weapon development as the world experienced two world wars. During World War II nations watched as the first atomic bomb was dropped on Japan making the U.S.A. the first world super power. Since then the world has been in an arms race and today nations such as China, Russia, and North Korea stand eye to eye with America. In fact, America is shrinking in comparison to other nations of the world.
The question many have asked is how does all this fit into prophecy? Some prophecies cannot be understood apart from modern times. There has been more fulfillment of prophecy in the last one hundred years than in the last two thousand. One key prophecy which fits this criteria is Daniel 12:4; “But you, Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book until the time of the end; many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall increase.”
This verse not only affirms the sealing of Daniels prophecy but exposes the time when this seal will be broken, “the time of the end.” The search and understanding of end times would come to fruition during the time of the end. This verse also gives us exponential signs which signal the time of the end, giving the generation living at that time two markers with which to gauge the times, “many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall increase.” I was sitting in traffic one day and looking up I saw two commercial planes crossing the sky each going in a different direction. It was then that I had a realization that the darkness which has shrouded the seal of Daniel’s prophecy for so many ages has been pealed open and the light of its truths has now seeped through. The generation in which we live can now say with certainty that we live in the time of the end. No other generation has seen mankind excel as rapidly in knowledge and travel as our generation has. Looking back to the last two centuries, we can see the significance of what Daniel predicted as all aspects of life will be on the exponential curve as the end times continue to unfold.
The 20th century was the century of the exponential curve. At the time of Christ the population was about 200 million people. It took 1650 years for the population to double. It wasn’t until 1650 were there were 400 million people living on the planet. It wasn’t until 1850 until there were 1 billion people and at the beginning of the 20th century the Population was only slightly above 1 billion. In only 100 years we increased by 5 billion people. In the 20th century there was an increase in longevity, the key was modern medicine. In 1900 life expectancy was 47 years. In 2000, life expectancy raised to 77 years, an increase of 30 years in only 100 years. Two thirds of people in the 20thcentury who lived to the age of 65 are still alive at this very moment. The acceleration of technology has now pushed us into what is currently being called the post-modern age. Every aspect of life is now dependent upon our technological progress. In the 1960’s it was the eight track player, in the 70’s the cassette, then the compact disc. Now we have cell phones, ipods, and all the wireless gadgets anyone could need. As rapid as knowledge is gained, technology is not far behind. In just 30 years computer technology has advanced faster than we can keep up. In the 70’s, computer programs were written line by line, now our computers write our programs for us.
All of these examples should spark awareness that we are quickly approaching the fulfillment of Daniel’s prophecy of the coming Antichrist. As we gain momentum on technological advancement civilization on the other hand is unraveling and coming apart. The world economy is beginning to fray and capitalism has spawned every sort of greed and corruption conceivable. In times past divorce was looked upon with repugnance, today it is accepted as normal and tolerable. Apathy is rampant in our society and we are living on barrowed time. Violent crime has increased 500% since the 1960’s, child abuse and teen suicide has tripled. Our prisons are overflowing and its rehabilitation system has failed. Personality disorders are at an epidemic high as more and more people are afflicted with one disorder or another. People are just not thinking right, today delusion has riveted our society as we hear day after day of heinous crimes committed by teenagers or a father who just murdered his wife and kids, not to mention those who enter into a school or theater to kill as many people as they can.
The bible describes these narcissistic behaviors as exponential signs as people will be characterized by all kinds of self-centered and unnatural perversions which will be present in the last days. 2 Timothy 3:1-5 is prophetic in nature for it pinpoints a particular time when civilization as a whole will become decadent, not just in moral behavior, but a presence of feigned godly behavior refusing the reality of the Christian faith. “But understand this, that in the last days will come (set in) perilous times of great stress and trouble (hard to deal with and hard to bear). For people will be lovers of self and (utterly) self-centered, lovers of money and aroused by an inordinate (greedy) desire for wealth, proud and arrogant and contemptuous boasters. They will be abusive (blasphemous, scoffing), disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy and profane. They will be without natural (human) affection (callous and inhuman,) relentless (admitting of no truce or appeasement); they will be slanderers (false accusers, troublemakers), intemperate and loose in morals and conduct, uncontrolled and fierce, haters of good. They will be lovers of sensual pleasures and vain amusements more than and rather than lovers of God. For although they hold a form of piety (true religion), they deny and reject and are strangers to the power of it (their conduct belies the genuineness of their profession) ~ AMP.
Although mankind possesses all these traits by the nature within, and history has recorded that this persona has always been present since mans fall in Eden, this passage is describing an escalation within civilization has a whole. “In the last days” is a phrase which deals with that which is last in time or in place. When Paul penned these words he was describing the end of the age when times would become harsh, fierce, and savage. A time in the future when mankind would no longer exemplify neither normal or natural behaviors.
If you are still not convinced, the most compelling evidence of all is the reestablishment of the Nation of Israel. In 1948 as Israel reappeared on the world scene as a sovereign state, countless prophecies were fulfilled. The end of the age could not come about without the presence of the Nation of Israel. Since the Jews have occupied the land of Israel she has been center stage on the world’s arena. Israel is God’s prophetic time clock; her presence has set up what was needed for the appearance of the Antichrist.
A curse was pronounced by God through His servant Moses that He would scatter His chosen nation among all peoples, from one end of the earth to the other where they would find no rest and would live in constant fear for their lives—Deut. 28:63-68. This curse found its fulfillment in A.D. 70 when Roman centurions under General Titus utterly destroyed Israel because of the Jew’s rebellion against Rome. The armies of Titus demolished Jerusalem, slaughtered most of the occupants, turned the temple into rubble and caused every surviving Jew in Jerusalem to flee—”from one end of the earth to the other.” Today, modern day Israel accounts for about one third of the world’s Jewish population. More Jews live in the United States than in Israel. It is estimated that there are 13 million Jews world wide; six million of them live in the United States, and only 4.6 million in Israel. Though Israel recovered its right to exist as a Sovereign State in 1948, still she is dispersed among the nations of the world.
“For I do not desire, brethren, that you should be ignorant of this mystery, lest you should be wise in your own opinion, that blindness in part has happened to Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in” ~ Romans 11:25. The blinding (or hardening, Rom. 11:7) of Israel as a nation is neither total nor final: it is both partial and temporary. Because of unbelief “God has given them a spirit of stupor, eyes that they should not see and ears that they should not hear, to this very day”—Romans 11:8. Individually, any Jew can turn to the Lord Jesus and the blindness is removed by the new birth (2 Cor. 3:13-15), they then become the ”remnant according to the election of grace”—Romans 11:5. As a nation, “until this day” Israel still remains sightless, both to the Scripture and to her Messiah. A canopy of obscurity to spiritual truth keeps Israel from the glorious light of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. This blindness not only was the source of Israel’s rejection of Christ, but will be the basis of her acceptance of Antichrist, which of course, will usher in the final prophetic week (Daniel’s Seventieth Week) once a treaty is signed with the beast.