I was recently asked by a concerned reader if I believed that the world was going to end. This person seemed legitimately concerned and frightened probably because of how immoral the world has become. My response was “Well, it depends what you mean by the word ‘end’”.
Are we close to the actual end of the world? The answer, according to the book of revelation would be No. Far from it actually.
What I do believe however is that we are very close to the “tribulation” period which the Book of Revelation describes. It seems most of the pieces are falling into place now. However, no one really knows (except for God) when that period will actually start or end.
However, many bible prophesies can pretty accurately describe the time that we’re currently in.
Take 2 Timothy 3 for example, in which the apostle Paul states:
“This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.”
How does this Biblical prophecy fit in today’s world?:
I don’t believe that there’s ever been another time in history in which this prophecy holds more true than today. Here are some facts:
The world is becoming less religious with each passing generation
The world is less “religious” today than it has been at any point in history since Christianity was introduced. People are leaving the Churches in drones. Ireland, which was once one of the central hubs of the Catholic religion for centuries, once boasted one of the highest rates in the world of practicing Christians and church attendees. Looking at past surveys taken, throughout the 1970s up to the 1990s, almost 90% of Irish Christians claimed to attend Church every Sunday. Fast forward to today and only about 40% claim to attend Church every Sunday. The percentage of the population now identifying as atheist or agnostic has also been ticking up fast.
Also, a similar trend has taken place here in the U.S. The trend is especially noticeable when you divide it by generational affiliation. According to a study done by Pew research in 2014, 85% of the Silent generation identified as Religious, 78% of Baby Boomers identified as religious, 70% of GenX identified as religious, and only 56% of millennials identified as religious. As you can see here, each generation seems to get less and less religious. More people nowadays (especially the younger generations) are identifying as either atheist or agnostic. This has also hit Church attendance for both Catholics and Protestants. Church attendance around the world is at an all time low.
I’d say this growing trend fits St. Paul’s prophecy quite well.
Science studies God’s design but fails to give Him credit for it
Another trend that is happening is in the sciences. For some reason, today, most scientists and scholars identify as “atheist” or “Agnostic”. They spend most of their time studying and trying to learn about things which God has created but do not want to give God any credit for it. They are also trying to artificially duplicate God’s creation. For instance, they have been avidly studying stem cells in order to engineer the growth of new tissue. They have also been studying things like Genomic sequencing in order to create synthetic DNA and thus in the future, create artificial life.
They spend most of their time studying God’s creation and are still extremely far behind on all of the intricate workings of nature, yet, they believe that they are smarter than God. In fact most believe that he doesn’t even exist. As if all of these miraculous feats of nature just somehow created itself or evolved out of nothing. I believe that this is what Paul was referring to when he said “Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof”.
Political and Social Trends leading to increased immorality
Yet another trend happening is on the political and social spectrum. Society is becoming more and more accepting of things that were once considered evil or taboo. I know that many on the left would consider this a good thing and would probably defend it as “protecting civil liberties and civil rights” but this is not what it is at all.
Virtually all people today (both liberal and conservative) would agree that discrimination is bad. Virtually all people would agree that murder is bad. Virtually all people would agree that slavery or taking away freedom is bad. However we see all of these things being “packaged” and presented in a different form now and most of society is standing behind it.
For instance, right now we see protesters on the streets claiming to fight for things like equality for all, open borders, LGBTQ rights, etc. We have especially seen an uptick during the Trump era. However the hypocrisy becomes extremely evident when we see how the left treats the other side. Yes, they fight for equality for all but yet they are also quick to demonize and suppress anyone that doesn’t agree with them. They claim to promote civil rights but are quick to suppress religious rights. Yes, they want to allow asylum for immigrants but they’ve become so hellbent on getting those immigrant voters that now governments like California are actually advocating for breaking the law.
As I said earlier, virtually everyone claims to be against murder but yet the left is advocating for taking the lives of fetuses. They claim to do this in the name of women’s rights. However, where is the babies’ rights? They don’t talk about how many mothers have aborted their child and later said that it ruined their lives. They haven’t talked about how many mothers rejected an abortion and are happy now that they didn’t go through with it. Even Norma McCorvey (AKA: Roe) (who was the plaintiff in the landmark case Roe vs Wade which legalized abortions), later regretted her decision and came out as a pro-life activist and spent the rest of her life protesting abortion. However, the left would never tell you stuff like that because it doesn’t fit their agenda.
Virtually all people agree that slavery or suppression of free speech is bad but yet again, we see the left package it up as “hate speech” and suddenly it becomes acceptable. For instance, universities are overwhelmingly liberal and secular today. I have posted stats before. In an Econ Journal study done back in 2016, it was shown that liberal professors outnumbered conservative ones by 12 to 1. A separate study done recently by the National Association of Scholars confirmed that 39% of top colleges in the US didn’t have a single conservative professor at all. All of this shows the state in which kids today are being taught these leftist ideas with no counter-arguments being presented to them at all. This fact is further illustrated by analyzing the demographics of guest speakers at college campuses. When a liberal speaker (pro-abortion, pro-LGBTQ, pro-immigration etc) comes to talk, they get welcomed with open arms but when a conservative speaker comes to talk, protesters line up outside, create violence, buy up all the tickets themselves to try to stop people from going, etc. You see, the left claims to be about equal rights and free speech but the second someone comes with a different opinion, they stop them from speaking and suppress their rights.
This is the current state not just in America, but also most of the developed world. As long as society keeps getting more and more atheist and more and more liberal, it will only get worse and lead into the tribulation period which the Bible talks about.
So to make a long story short, yes, I do believe that if things keep progressing the way that they are, we will soon enter the tribulation period which the Bible discusses. However, that doesn’t mean that it’s the end of the world. Actually, for all of the righteous people that survive the tribulation period, it would lead into a new period of prosperity on Earth. Remember, after the tribulation is over, we will enter a reign of peace on earth for a thousand years. The bad will be gone. The devil will be imprisoned. Earth will once again be free from sin, suffering, persecutions, wars, poverty, etc. It won’t get bad again until the 1,000 years have ended and the devil is loosed from his prison. And it should be a long time after that in which world actually ends.