2020 is the stranger our mothers warned
us about. Let's take a side trail today into the world of Bible prophecy. These verses are from the KJV, but I'm updating most of the old English for readability. I'm using Matthew 24. Similar passages are in Mark 13 and Luke 21.
Matthew 24:6-8 6And you shall hear of wars and rumors of wars: see that you be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. 7For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and diseases, and earthquakes, in diverse places. 8All these are the beginning of sorrows.
In verse 7 the word word rendered nation is the Greek word ethnos and could be translated race, but the meaning of it is culture group. Race against race. Culture against culture. We're seeing that in the U.S. right now, although I believe the riots are cultural and not racial. It's Marxism versus American democracy. Race is a cover. It's a kulturkampf.
Verses 9 through 31 go into detail about things that happen in the end times including the second coming. The following verses tell the timing of that.
Matthew 24 32-3432 32Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When its branch is yet tender, and puts out leaves, you know that summer is near: 33So likewise you, when you shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors. 34Truly I say to you, This generation shall not pass[away], till all these things be fulfilled.
From the Old Testament we know that the fig tree is Israel. Thus, when Israel is reborn as a nation, that generation will see the return of Jesus. The problem is that the Bible doesn't define how long a generation is, though there have been many theories. It's been a conundrum down through the ages However, around 2008 it occurred to me one that we don't necessarily have to know how long that is. Instead, we need to know how long a human lifespan is, and by definition a generation can't be longer than that. The Bible does defines the lifespan.
Psalm 90:10 The days of our years are seventy; and if by reason of strength they be eighty years, yet is their strength labor and sorrow; for it is soon cut off, and we fly away.
The human lifespan is seventy or at most eighty years. It doesn't matter how long people live in the real world. The Bible uses its own definitions for certain terms. Israel was legally reborn at 12:01a.m. on May 15, 1948. In order to determine a limit on when the second coming can occur, we just add 70 or 80 to 1948, and voilà. The limit for seventy has already passed. The limit for 80 is some time in December of 2027. In order for the Bible to be consistent with itself, the second coming has to occur before that. Remember. It's not a date for the second coming. It's a limit on how late it can happen. It can occur any time before that but no later. This calculation uses the 360-day prophetic year, not the Gregorian calendar year. Using the modern calendar would only push it back 10 months, however.
But this post is not interested in that. We're interested in the beginning of the Tribulation, which starts seven years before the second coming. Subtracting 7 from 2027 puts us in 2020. The Tribulation should begin late this year. Based on research I haven't published, a more specific date for the beginning of the Tribulation is the week of November 9th. If you believe in the Rapture, then that would have to occur before November, even as soon as Rosh Hashana in September, but I don't believe sooner.
If all this is correct and the Tribulation begins this year, what can we expect until then? From above: "nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and diseases, and earthquakes, in diverse places. 8All these are the beginning of sorrows." The word translated sorrows is actually pangs as in birth pangs. We would call them contractions. We're looking at more ethnic/cultural strife and diseases and famines and earthquakes. Think of the contraction metaphor. If the second coming is in 2027, that makes SARS-CoV-2 a contraction. Very few people are affected, but the whole world has tensed up. It's the same for the rioting we're seeing.
If famines and earthquakes are going to be contractions, they could only affect a few people while shaking the entire world the way the virus has. Will we see another contraction before November? There's no guarantee, but if we do, I'd expect it to be famine or earthquake. Famine is obvious, although what famine shakes the whole world? It would have to be something different than we're used to seeing. The same with an earthquake. Perhaps a volcano like Krakatoa. Krakatoa is in Indonesia. When it exploded in 1883, the sound was heard in London, England. If something like that happened today, very few people would be affected, but it would shake the world. A contraction could be nation against nation, war. More on that below. Regardless of what the contraction is, it would have to be world-shaking for it to count.
As we draw closer to September, I've been thinking about this more. It's been a long wait since 2008 to see if all this actually happens according to this timeline. If the anti-Christ confirms the covenant in November, it means he would have to be on the world stage performing miracles shortly prior to that in order to rally the world to the new age of peace. Interestingly, Israel may unilaterally implement the Trump peace plan before the middle of September. That's when the U.N. General Assembly comes back in session from their vacation. No, Trump is not the anti-Christ. If Israel does, it might trigger the War of Gog and Magog, a contraction. There have been a lot of bombings in Iran that "experts" think are Israel's way of triggering a war before the U.S. election in November, just in case Trump loses. This summer could get very interesting very quickly.
But what if nothing happens? Then it would look like one of Jesus's prophecies failed. I've already seen a translation that changes "This generation shall not pass" to "this people" will not pass. I assume the translator expected that prophecy to be a problem for the religion and took steps to avoid that. I expect the various translations would change the verse, and the religion would go on. However, I'm trying to be more positive. This year is very strange. I'm anticipating more. We may have seen nothing yet.
Have a great weekend.