Time Line - Signs of the Times - Storm Warning
Does Peace Come Now?
… We are all neighbors, especially now that the Cold War is over. The West won the war many contend. But we cannot afford to celebrate prematurely; the post-Cold War stockpiles of nuclear weapons still give mankind the power to destroy the earth seventeen times over in flames reaching a 130 million degrees. No United Nations resolution, no peacekeeping force, no new world order can stop it when the appointed time arrives. While we all should work and pray for peace, we know that the danger is still great. Graham, Storm Warning, page 180
Photo of storm by Mike Hollingshead, copyrighted image used here with permission granted by Mr. Hollingshead and by www.extremeinstability.com.
For all the Twentieth Century, humanity raised civilization to new heights—from horse drawn carriage to landing on the Moon; from typewriter to computer; from simple artillery to A-bomb. And in all the mix of events, there is only the subtle appearance that something came along to break the tension on war. Even the suggestion of a big change holds hope for peace, but does peace come now?
Furthermore, the number of aggressive Third World nations with dreams of glory constantly seems to be growing. There are several military dictators who would think nothing of lobbing a nuclear missile into Tel Aviv or Jerusalem if they had the capacity. So long as men live by the laws of self-sufficiency and expediency, there will be tyrants who can bring calamity upon the world. Graham, Storm Warning, page 180
Even with the passing of Saddam Hussein's power in 2003, the power that replaces him is yet to be fully defined. What prevents Iraq's future leaders from the tendency to seek a similar path of self-sufficiency and expediency? In fact, without Saddam, Iraq now sells oil, can build wealth, and even be more openly powerful. It's not just about weapons of mass destruction. Money pays for terror in hidden ways. Belief systems drive actions and the Middle East continues in turmoil.
Almost any petty tyrant can become a nuclear or biochemical bully in the present world situation. Even though the total devastation of nuclear war should make such a prospect unthinkable, unpredictable hotheads such as Saddam Hussein or Mohamar Qaddafi could rock the World with a surprise attack. The change from conventional to nuclear and biochemical weapons has made the task of international diplomacy immensely more complicated. Graham, Storm Warning, page 182
Dr. Graham mentions Saddam Hussein and Mohamar Qaddafi by name, but keep an eye on the power replacing the faces as they are removed, age, or fade. The undercurrents created by a power-centered philosophy, reckless ambition, anger, and sin—more than any person's name or face—is the real concern. These are issues that threaten peace.
Remember the key question: when does peace come?
Do we only experience episodes of security? Might we recognize that peace merely represents a concept forever sought but never truly obtained. For in all human history war and tensions are the predominant norm.
Historians tell us that the world has seen more than four thousand wars during the last five thousand years, most of them lasting for years at a time. Some, like the Thirty Years War in Europe, lasted for decades and drained the lifeblood and the youth of a dozen nations. We know that more than 60 million people died in the two world wars of the first half of this century. Graham, Storm Warning, page 181
Somewhere now, if not where you are, there is conflict on this earth. Its been like that throughout all human history.
(Thirty Years War, covers the 'European theater' from 1618 to 1648)
Of Peace the Scriptures Say
Peace is a big issue in the world—especially so in the Middle East. Numerous efforts to negotiate security measures and dreams of a full peace in all the Middle East remains just a dream. Bible studies often refer to the following Scripture as an indicator of what will happen:
1 But concerning the times and the seasons, brethren, you have no need that I should write to you. 2 For you yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so comes as a thief in the night. 3 For when they say, "Peace and safety!" then sudden destruction comes upon them, as labor pains upon a pregnant woman. And they shall not escape. (1 Thessalonians 5: 1-3; NKJV)
The suggestion or literal meaning of "Peace and safety" comes to a pivotal point in time. A declaration will be made, not about war, but about 'peace and safety.' Yet at that specific juncture in time, in the greater biblical context, it's not peace but an end of the current era that comes.
Look at the news. Look at the repeated measures seeking peace and associated conflicts. What should be kept in mind is simple. What on the surface comes as a declaration of peace and safety rests on a foundation of long standing conflict.
The superficial appearance of a breakthrough will be accompanied by a break toward the worst of all episodes of human history—which comes intertwined with God's judgment (see end of the timeline). The latter issue is something hard to relate to in the mind, yet this is what the Scriptures tell us. To get a grip on the reality of this—to see how this is being set up in time—requires a look along time. This is the reason for WindowView's timeline.
How the TimeLine Works
Here is a little insight to what time at the window is all about! The convergence of science and scriptural themes all comes down to the latter portion of the timeline. At some point the momentum and direction of humanity's past rolls over into the present, and in turn, that runs headlong into the events recorded in the biblical text—especially the complimentary interplay between what is in the books of Daniel and Revelation (for source of supporting documentation see recommended book at end of this article). The transition from current events into the future events is written with a number of symbolic representations. At some point the symbolisms lift themselves off the face of the page to stand as actual events along the timeline.
For the skeptical mind—one that thinks the Bible is likely no more than a record of past oral tales, folk lore, or some mix of literary expression and other historical writings—the point of convergence where current historical events directly parallels the text becomes an awesome crossroads. Here timelines merge into unity. They will say: Who would have believed it! Or as the text testifies, the evident relationship between events and what was written over two millennia ago will be denied.
The Bible tells us that at some point there is a collision between what the biblical text projects for the future and the current events that humans experience. Among these will be the rise in power of one central (secular, lawless) global leader and with this leader will be a merging of global power. There are numerous books describing what the 'end time' will look like. Chances are all such studies give a glimpse but what will happen is likely to take on a color and feel that no study can reveal before the actual events come. [One resource we highly recommend is 'Footsteps of Messiah' see note at end of this article]
We offer our feature area on Israel News and Views to drive home the point that what is happening in the Middle East today is in fact news that falls along both secular and biblical timelines. The book of Daniel describes a unique look at a timeline based on 490 years ... and of this the last seven years are yet to come (See the book chapter provided (in PDF format) by this web site for a description of that timeline and its associated events). What happens in the Middle East and especially in light of Israel's fate is central to the story. The only true peace humanity will ever know comes out of what will happen there.
Like the timeline's dual tracks along scientific and biblical themes—that being a focus on the Scriptures and ongoing events in the Middle East—the momentum of human activity blends into a single track previously revealed in the prophetic texts. That, again, may be hard for some to swallow, but the point is simple. Much of what is required to be in place to make the end story work, is now in place. Never before, in all time, could this have been stated with as much certainty.
To the title line question on peace, we say the answer is not yet!
Peace is on the way say the Scriptures, but not along the lines of humanity's common and vain hopes nor by the powers that presently rule over the earth today. Until the biblical 'end game' is played out completely, all human efforts will fall short of true peace. Just look at the long historical record to this point, look at today's news, perhaps the headlines will decry "Peace And Safety," but look again and ask, what evidence is there that we've finally overcome all the underlying problems? Even there, the answer is not yet!
The importance to global change is in looking at how social, biological, and physical sciences all reveal data and signs for more ominous changes in the near future. This is change in every aspect of human and earthly affairs ... globally. The Window looks further to see change as a backdrop to a biblical timeline. Driving forces for change force us to ask the most important questions about our true origin, who we are, why we are here, and what the Scriptures tell us about the future. Change forces us to look deeper to face choice or crisis. Life is an opportunity to look for the answers.
Information presented here relates to the land Israel and her people. Reading this suggested text puts the ongoing struggle in Israel in a biblical context. We recommend a reading of:
Arnold G. Fruchtenbaum, Th. M., Ph.D.1982. Footsteps of Messiah - A Study of the Sequence of Prophetic Events. (New edition released 2003)
Obtain this book via Amazon.com (click on book icon above), or order direct from publisher.
THE FOOTSTEPS OF THE MESSIAH:
A Study of the Sequence of Prophetic Events
Dr. Fruchtenbaum gathers the many pieces of the prophetic puzzle and places them in sequential order with the result summed up by Dr. Charles Ryrie in his foreword: "Those who read this book cannot help but be instructed and stimulated by his work." Footsteps is detailed, thorough and scholarly, yet written in a style that the average reader can easily understand. With a wealth of wisdom drawn from his Jewish background and extensive research, the author even tackles the "problem passages" to provide a comprehensive overview of the entire range of prophetic truth.
The newly revised edition of this popular book is now shipping!
Over twenty years of teaching Eschatology since the original writing of this book has given Dr. Fruchtenbaum further reflections on some passages. He has added five new appendices to the book.
Hardcover (880 pp.) ... $35.00
Billy Graham is well known the world over for his work in spreading the biblical message of salvation.(www.billygraham.org)
Please Note! We are presenting a number of quotations in the "Signs of the Times" series that are taken from their original context. So Be Aware ... the impact of these statements is only heightened and intensified by a reading of the original text cited below. WindowView serves to reflect many original sources and in this case we highly recommend a reading of the entire book used as a source here! The 'Signs' are woefully important to revealing humanity's future, reading these quotations in their original context makes this point all the more clear!
Quotations attributed to Graham are from: Billy Graham. 1992. Storm Warning. Published by: W Publishing Group (formerly Word Publishing)
Time spent looking ... through a window on life and choice ... brings the opportunity to see in a new light. The offer for you to Step Up To Life is presented on many of the web pages at WindowView. Without further explanation we offer you the steps here ... knowing that depending on what you have seen or may yet explore in the window ... these steps will be the most important of your life ...