Prophecy is like a puzzle - it generally has very discernable borders and if the borders of your views are correct - then the storyline is easy to understand - or at the very least - more understandable.
The book of Daniel is the foundation of all prophecy. In chapter two he interprets a dream for a King about a statue made of various metals. He says the metals represent kingdoms one after the after. The final kingdom will divide in two and stay that way until a figurative stone is cut out and strikes the statue on it's feet bringing all the kingdoms to ruin. Afterwards the divided kingdom is given to the Saints of the Most high and it's ruled from Jerusalem for 1000 years.
If one does not understand this story - it is very difficult to understand a coherent pictureline of history future. As a quick explanation to help you see what lies beyond these pages, Daniel says the last kingdom that will rule over all the earth would be Rome. He further says it will be divided and that in this divided stage it's residue will linger in the world until the end of the age - when Christ will strike the statue on it's feet - bringing the entire world system down. At that point - he says the Saints of God will be given the kingdom (singular).
Many prophecy traditions err in the FRAME that surrounds their fundamental beliefs. They do not recognise the final kingdom (Rome) is divided in two - AND STAYS THAT WAY - until the stone strikes it. Daniel clearly and unmistakably says - "until a stone struck the image on it's feet" (ealier he had said "whereas you saw the feet AND toes, the Kingdom will be divided." One foot five toes on one divided side and the same on the other.)
Daniel never says the two sides get back together. In fact, he says there will be numerous attempts but it never happens. "They will mingle themselves with the seed of men but they will not cleave one to another"
What this is saying - is that Rome would divide itself in half - which it did - and afterwards - the world will be drawn into East and West trying to become one again but unable - and stay that way until the very end of this age - and so it has.
For 2000 years East is East and West is West etc. Greek and Latin, Occident and Orient. Islamic and Christian, Democratic and Dictatorial - so forth and so on.
Today - we are witnessing the world being drawn even deeper into this great divide that will ultimately clash - and bring the world into God's judgement. There is clear evidence in many very plain verses - that both sides of the old kingdom will persecute Christians on massive scales for very different reasons. It is this persecution that ultimately brings God's judgement upon the earth.
So are the days here? Yes, of course. But what may surprise you is the world still has another generation of history to play out - before the ultimate wars start. The stock market isn't going to crash, a great depression isn't just days around the corner and a secret rapture isn't about to take all the "True" believers out of all their cars and airplanes. In fact - surprisingly - the world is headed for even greater prosperity and enormous advances in technology even as the weather changes and warning signs become even more and more ominous.
Both prosperity and signs will advance together even deeper into the future as the next 40 years plays out in a very delicate dance of warnings, Antichrist and Secular Humanism - leading to the humilation of the West and the destruction of the East. Out of the consequences and destruction of the war, the nations of the world will simultaneously see the truth of the moment and recognise the God they were attempting to destroy.
Israel will still be standing but their enemies will be shattered and Isaiah tells us that God gives them the land of those who tried to destroy them. Then finally, the world will know that Jehovah is God and will know that Israel went into exile 2000 years ago because they broke their covenant with God and rejected His Messiah.
Even as Israel was recently formed out of horible persecution in the midst of a great and destructive world war - the Kingdom of Christ is about to dawn from the results of a far more devastating war and even a greater persecution.
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