That everyone who thirsteth for the truth may obtain it, these publications are, as a Christian service, provided without charge. They levy but one exaction: the soul's obligation to itself to prove all things and hold fast to that which is good. The only strings attached to this free proffer are the golden strands of Eden and the crimson cords of Calvary - the ties that bind.
THAT WHICH IS TO BE DURING THE TIME OF THE END
TEXT OF ADDRESS BY V.T. HOUTEFF, MINISTER OF DAVIDIAN 7TH-DAY ADVENTISTS SABBATH, NOVEMBER 27, 1948 MT. CARMEL CHAPEL WACO, TEXAS
In order to know what takes place during the time of the end, we must first know where the time of the end begins and ends. We must know both ends if we are to know what takes place between. Now, to find when "the time of the end" begins, let us turn to--
Dan. 11:40 -- "And at the time of the end shall the king of the south push at him: and the king of the north shall come against him like a whirlwind, with chariots, and with horsemen, and with many ships; and he shall enter into the countries, and shall overflow and pass over."
In this verse of Scripture there are five clues to be carefully noted: (1) that the war mentioned in this verse is the last conflict between the two kings recorded in the prophecy of Daniel 11; (2) that it is a losing war for the king of the south; (3) that it is fought at the time of the end, not before, in, or after; (4) that the king of the north becomes great while the king of the south declines; and (5) that the statement, "at the time of the end shall the king of the south push at him," very obviously marks the beginning of "the time of the end."
If, therefore, we find the year this prophesied war began, we shall have established the beginning of the "time of the end."
Since the king of the south pushes at the king of
the north, it follows that the king of the south is the aggressor, feels himself strong to attack. He nevertheless loses out and the king of the north overruns him, becomes great -- takes many countries, including the following:
Dan. 11:41 -- "He shall enter also into the glorious land, and many countries shall be overthrown: but these shall escape out of his hand, even Edom, and Moab, and the chief of the children of Ammon."
Here it is seen that the king of the north grows very great during the time of the end. He takes "the glorious land" (Palestine), and besides taking many other countries, he also takes Edom and Moab and Ammon (the Arab countries) which nevertheless in time "escape out of his hand" -- free themselves. Moreover, says the scripture:
Dan. 11:42 -- "He shall stretch forth his hand also upon the countries: and the land of Egypt shall not escape."
This definitely shows that "in the time of the end" one great power which has been ruling these countries, among which are included Egypt and Palestine, loses them and becomes small, while another power takes them and waxes even greater.
For centuries the Ottoman empire ruled these countries, and history records that the first Turkish reverses on land occurred about 1699. Ever since, Turkey has been declining and the Christian nations gaining, but it is Great Britain in particular that has taken the countries mentioned by name in this prophecy. She is the one who has taken many other countries besides these and has waxed great during the decline of the Ottoman empire.
Obviously, therefore, these historic facts, besides
others we have not mentioned, prove that rising from the jungles south of Palestine, the Ottoman empire, next after the Ptolemies, holds the title "king of the south"; and the nations north of Palestine, the Christian nations rising from the Roman empire (and now Great Britain in particular) hold the title "king of the north." And since the decline of the Ottoman empire began in 1699, and the growth of the British Empire began during the same time, then the beginning of the eighteenth century is therefore the beginning of the "time of the end."
Finally, since we now see that the wars of the Mohammedans with the Christian nations are mentioned in prophecy with special emphasis that Egypt and Palestine are, during the time of the end, ceded to the king of the north as part of his trophies, these kings are positively identified. And the fall of the one with the growth of the other after the Treaty of Corlowitz in 1699 by which "Mustapha II agreed to renounce his claims upon Transylvania and a large part of Hungary, to give up Marea to Venetians to restore Polalia and the Ukraine to Poland, and to leave Azov to the Russians" (Twentieth Century Cyclopaedia, Vol. 6, pg. 247) certainly establishes the beginning of the time of the end.
Dan. 11:43, 44 -- "But he shall have power over the treasures of gold and of silver, and over all the precious things of Egypt: and the Libyans and the Ethiopians shall be at his steps. But tidings out of the east and out of the north shall trouble him: therefore he shall go forth with great fury to destroy, and utterly to make away many."
These verses reveal that after taking Egypt and Palestine, the king of the north enters into another war, not on account of the king of the south, not with Turkey, but rather due to rumors from the east and from the north that trouble him. These cause him to go forth with
great fury to destroy many. But he conquers nothing worth mentioning, and according to the verse that follows he is afterward threatened with coming to his end. This particular war, therefore, brings the first reverses to the king of the north since the reverses of the king of the south in 1699.
Germany and Russia from the north, also Japan from the east, the rumors which put Great Britain and her allies into World War II, are therefore the "tidings" which brought the war and which, though supposedly the war was won, weakened rather than strengthened the British Empire.
Dan. 11:45 -- "And he shall plant the tabernacles of his palace between the seas in the glorious holy mountain; yet he shall come to his end, and none shall help him."
The only portion of Daniel 11 yet to be fulfilled is this verse, the last of the chapter, and since these prophecies are made to be understood only when they are being fulfilled or after fulfillment, verse 45 is not as clear as we should like to have it. Consequently concerning the place of his tabernacles and his end, also as to whether another Christian power shall inherit the title "king of the north" before verse 45 is fulfilled, only time itself will positively portray the whole truth.
The thing that Inspiration makes altogether clear is the fact that the king's next stand is his end, while all look and listen, but none come to his help.
Since we have established the time of the beginning of "the time of the end," let us now establish the end of "the time of the end." For light on the subject we turn to--
Rev. 19:19-21 -- "And I saw the beast, and the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make
war against him that sat on the horse, and against his army. And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone. And the remnant were slain with the sword of Him that sat upon the horse, which sword proceeded out of His mouth: and all the fowls were filled with their flesh."
"The beast," "the false prophet," and "the remnant" are here mentioned. Who are they?
First the beast and the false prophet and then the remnant, those that are left, are cast into the lake of fire. Since the "beast" and the "prophet" are special world entities, the remnant (those that are left) represent the rest of the unrepented world sympathetic with the beast and the prophet. The destruction of the prophet, the beast, and the remnant, therefore, is the end of the world -- the terminus of the time of the end.
Besides these verses of Scripture, the twentieth chapter of Revelation reveals that with this last pre-millennial event in the drama of sin, the millennial reign of Christ and the Church begins (Rev. 20:1-3), in the end of which time shall arise all who had no "part in the first resurrection." Rev. 20:5, 6.
Now we have seen that "the time of the end" spans from the commencement of the decline of the Ottoman Empire, to the end of the world, and that the end of the world is the end of all people but the Church -- "those who lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years."
Let us now see what takes place between these two sign posts. We shall continue with Daniel's prophecy through the twelfth chapter.
Dan. 12:1 -- "And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great Prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book."
"And at that time" -- that is, at the time the king of the north comes to his end (Dan. 11:45) -- shall Michael stand up and deliver His people, the Church, all who are written in the Book. What else takes place?--
Dan. 12:2 -- "And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt."
Here is projected a resurrection of a mixed multitude, wicked and righteous -- foolish and wise. This resurrection, then, is not the pre-millennial "first resurrection," nor the post-millennial resurrection of the wicked (Rev. 20:5, 6), but a special one. If the wise who turn many to righteousness are of the resurrected in this special resurrection, and if they shine as the stars forever and ever, then this special resurrection takes place in probationary time.
Dan. 12:4 -- "But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased."
The understanding of the book and of the words of it, were to be sealed to the time of the end. During the time of the end, therefore, the book was to be opened. Knowledge was also to increase. Moreover, many were to run to and fro; that is, communication was to speed up greatly. All this we have already seen takes place during "the time of the end." Thus there is no room for doubt as to the time in which we are living -- the time of the end.
Dan. 12:8-10 -- "And I heard, but I understood not: then said I, O my Lord, what shall be the end of these things? And he said, Go thy way, Daniel: for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end. Many shall be purified, and made white, and tried; but the wicked shall do wickedly: and none of the wicked shall understand; but the wise shall understand."
Here Inspiration itself explains that no one, not even Daniel himself could possibly understand the book before the time of the end. And too, while the wicked were to continue doing wickedly, many were to be purified, made white and tried; that is, the purification of the church, the cleansing of the Sanctuary (Dan. 8:14), was to take place during the time of the end. In the words of the prophet Malachi the cleansing of the Sanctuary is preceded by this announcement:
Mal. 3:1-3 -- "Behold, I will send My messenger, and he shall prepare the way before Me: and the Lord, whom ye seek, shall suddenly come to His temple, even the messenger of the covenant, whom ye delight in: behold, he shall come, saith the Lord of hosts. But who may abide the day of his coming? and who shall stand when he appeareth? for he is like a refiner's fire, and like fullers' sope: and he shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver: and he shall purify the sons of Levi, and purge them as gold and silver, that they may offer unto the Lord an offering in righteousness."
Rather than say "Sanctuary," Inspiration in this instance says "Temple." And rather than say "cleansing," It uses the terms refining and purifying. The Apostle Peter, though, chooses to call the cleansing of the Sanctuary, "Judgment" in the "house of God":
1 Peter 4:17, 18 -- "For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the
Gospel of God? And if the righteous scarcely be saved, where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear?"
In the parable, however, Jesus explains the cleansing of the Sanctuary thus:
Matt. 13:30 -- "Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into My barn."
Here it is made clear that in this instance the wicked among the righteous are likened to tares, and the time of the cleansing itself, the Judgment, is likened to a "harvest," but that the cleansing itself is likened to a separation of wheat and tares.
Again, in verses 47 and 48 Christ draws a parallel between the Church a "net"; the people he likens to "fish," and the purification to a separation, whereas in Matthew 25 He calls the purified Church the Kingdom of God, and the people He likens unto "virgins," and the cleansing He illustrates by a door which lets in the wise but keeps out the foolish. But His second parable of Matthew 25, the separation, we are told, is to be like a master who comes to reckon with his servants. Those who have done nothing good for the advancement of His kingdom (who have not traded with and increased His talents -- Matt. 25:27) are cast out, there to gnash their teeth in "outer darkness." (Matt. 25:30.) In His third parable the separation He likens to a shepherd who separates the goats from the sheep (sinners from the saints); the goats are condemned to die but the sheep are given the right to the Kingdom.
The prophet Ezekiel, however, explains the cleansing of the Sanctuary from still another angle:
Ezek. 9:1, 2, 4, 7 -- "He cried also in mine ears with a loud voice, saying, Cause them that have charge over the city to draw near, even every man with his destroying weapon in his hand. And, behold, six men came from the way of the higher gate, which lieth toward the north, and every man a slaughter weapon in his hand; and one man among them was clothed with linen, with a writer's inkhorn by his side: and they went in, and stood beside the brasen altar.... And the Lord said unto him, Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem, and set a mark upon the foreheads of the men that sigh and that cry for all the abominations that be done in the midst thereof.... And to the others He said in mine hearing, Go ye after him through the city, and smite: let not your eyes spare, neither have ye pity: slay utterly old and young, both maids and little children, and women: but come not near any man upon whom is the mark; and begin at My sanctuary. Then they began at the ancient men which were before thehouse. And He said unto them, Defile the house, and fill the courts with the slain: go ye forth. And they went forth, and slew in the city."
Besides this vivid illustration, Inspiration, through the prophet Daniel reveals that the Sanctuary is to be cleansed not only from sinners, but from doctrinal error, too, for one angel inquired,--
Dan. 8:13, 14, 17 -- "...How long shall be the vision concerning the daily sacrifice, and the transgression of desolation, to give both the Sanctuary and the host to be trodden under foot? And He said unto me, Unto two thousand and three hundred days; then shall the sanctuary be cleansed.... Understand, O son of man: for at the time of the end shall be the vision."
The daily, the desolation, also the Sanctuary and the host pertain both to the doctrines and the people. Both are to be cleansed. And the angel explained that
the cleansing of the Sanctuary (cleansing it from both error and hypocrisy) takes place after the 2300 days, during the time of the end.
Moreover, through the prophet Zechariah the Lord makes another remarkable illustration which points out that the saints themselves also are to be cleansed:
Zech. 3:1-5 -- "And He shewed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the Lord, and Satan standing at his right hand to resist him. And the Lord said unto Satan, The Lord rebuke thee, O Satan; even the Lord that hath chosen Jerusalem rebuke thee: is not this a brand plucked out of the fire? Now Joshua was clothed with filthy garments, and stood before the angel. And He answered and spake unto those that stood before him, saying, Take away the filthy garments from him. And unto him He said, Behold, I have caused thine iniquity to pass from thee, and I will clothe thee with change of raiment. And I said, Let them set a fair mitre upon his head. So they set a fair mitre upon his head, and clothed him with garments. And the angel of the Lord stood by."
While we have already seen that the house of God is to be cleansed from error and from Hypocrites, here in Zechariah's prophecy we see that the saints themselves are cleansed from their sins -- their filthy garments are taken away, and clean and beautiful garments are given in their place. This phase of the cleansing is again illustrated by the wedding garment. (Matt. 22:11).
And now let me remind you that after the tares are taken away, "the wheat" is not left on the field where it grew (that is, the saints are not left where they were), but it is put into "the barn."
Furthermore, after the "bad fish" (hypocrites) are cast out, the "good fish" (the saints) are then put "into vessels," are not left in the "net" (not left in the place
where the cleansing occurred). Consequently when the church is thus cleansed, the saints are removed from their former place and put in a safe place -- away from all worldly influences and environments. Having been cleansed, they are necessarily thus kept clean. And where is that place? The Revelator has the answer:
Rev. 14:1, 4, 5 -- "And I looked, and, lo, a Lamb stood on the Mount Sion, and with Him an hundred forty and four thousand, having His Father's name written in their foreheads.... These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins. These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever He goeth. These were redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb. And in their mouth was found no guile: for they are without fault before the throne of God."
The cleansed ones you see, are the 144,000, and they are taken to Mount Sion.
Plainly, then, the cleansing is in two sections. The 144,000 guileless saints who are sealed from among the tribes of Israel (Rev. 7:4-7), the church, are but the first fruits. They are taken to Mt. Sion. Finally after the purification, or cleansing, of the church has taken place, then the great multitude of Revelation 7:9 are gathered out of all nations. They constitute the second fruits, for where there is no second there can be no first.
Where is Mt. Zion? Let Micah the prophet tell us:
Micah 3:12; 4:1, 2 -- "Therefore shall Zion for your sake be plowed as a field, and Jerusalem shall become heaps, and the mountain of the house as the high places of the forest.... But in the last days it shall come to pass, that the mountain of the house of the Lord shall be established in the top of the mountains, and it shall be exalted above the hills; and people shall flow unto
it. And many nations shall come, and say, Come, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, and to the house of the God of Jacob; and He will teach us of His ways, and we will walk in His paths: for the law shall go forth of Zion, and the Word of the Lord from Jerusalem."
This is Inspiration's own explanation of the place which the purified church is to occupy. Here we are told that though the ancient kingdom, the Jewish, whose place stood on Mount Zion, was to be demolished from the foundation up, we are nevertheless at the same time promised that the Kingdom will be restored in the last days and that it will be exalted above all other kingdoms, above all "mountains" and "hills."
Again says the Lord:
Ezek. 36:23-25 -- "And I will sanctify My great name, which was profaned among the heathen, which ye have profaned in the midst of them; and the heathen shall know that I am the Lord, saith the Lord God, when I shall be sanctified in you before their eyes. For I will take you from among the heathen, and gather you out of all countries, and will bring you into your own land. Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you, and ye shall be clean: from all your filthiness, and from all your idols, will I cleanse you."
We are here told that the final cleansing of the saints, the cleansing that removes all the marks of sin, is performed after God takes His people from among the heathen and from all countries, and brings them into their own land.
Ezek. 36:26 -- "A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh."
When the saints get to the Promised Land, then the sin-indulgent heart, the stony heart, is taken away and a heart of righteous desires, a fleshy heart, is given. No longer will God's people fight temptations from within in order to do righteousness. To them, in the period of the fleshly heart, it will be natural to do righteousness whereas now during the period of the stony heart it is natural to do unrighteousness.
Ezek. 36:27 -- "And I will put My spirit within you, and cause you to walk in My statutes, and ye shall keep My judgments, and do them."
The Spirit of God, moreover, will be freely given to the saints, and thus will they become perfect eternal beings, perfectly capable of walking in God's statutes and His judgments.
Ezek. 36:28 -- "And ye shall dwell in the land that I gave to your fathers; and ye shall be My people, and I will be your God."
They are to dwell, not in some other land, says the Lord, but in their own land, in the land He had anciently given to their fathers. They are to dwell in Palestine.
Now you plainly see that the unconverted Jews who are endeavoring to take the land of Palestine are not the people of whom these passages of Scripture speak. Now you see that Arab, Jew, or Gentile, all will eventually have to move away and give room to God's clean and purified people.
Joel 3:1, 2 -- "For, behold, in those days, and in that time, when I shall bring again the captivity of Judah and Jerusalem, I will also gather all nations, and will bring them down into the valley of Jehoshaphat, and will plead with them there for My people and for My heritage Israel, whom they have scattered among the
nations, and parted My land."
Here you have it stated as plain as it can be that when God brings back the captivity of His people, then He will gather all nations in the valley of Jehoshaphat and plead for His people -- for His second fruits -- after He takes the first fruits to Mount Zion.
Isa. 2:3 -- "And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob; and He will teach us of His ways, and we will walk in His paths: for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the Word of the Lord from Jerusalem."
Joel 3:20, 21 -- "But Judah shall dwell for ever, and Jerusalem from generation to generation. For I will cleanse their blood that I have not cleansed: for the Lord dwelleth in Zion."
Thus will the saints be enabled to live eternally.
Isa. 33:24 -- "And the inhabitant shall not say, I am sick: the people that dwell therein shall be forgiven their iniquity."
And what else will be said after the people are gathered and cleansed? Just this:
Rev. 22:11 -- "He that is unjust, let him be unjust still: and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still: and he that is holy, let him be holy still."
The completion of the cleansing brings probationary time to a close -- the sinner is forever to stay a sinner, and the righteous forever righteous. Then those who find themselves out of the holy land will wail and gnash their teeth. They will in anguish say:
Jer. 8:20 -- "The harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are not saved."
The land, moreover, shall be divided among the tribes but not as divided anciently. Time will not permit me to read the whole account of the division, but, here I have it reproduced in a map which shows that the land has never yet been thus divided. Each tribe is to get a full-length strip from the east to the west. The portion of Dan is the first on the north and the portion of Gad is the last on the south. In chapters 47 and 48 of Ezekiel you will find the full description of this division of the land.
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Furthermore, the land itself shall be cleansed; for says the Lord:
Ezek. 38:14, 16; 39:4, 7, 9-14 -- "Therefore, son of man, prophesy and say unto Gog, Thus saith the Lord God; In that day when My people of Israel dwelleth safely, shalt thou not know it?...And thou shalt come up against My people of Israel, as a cloud to cover the land; it shall be in the latter days, and I will bring thee against My land, that the heathen may know Me, when I shall be sanctified in thee, O Gog, before their eyes.... Thou shalt fall upon the mountains of Israel, thou, and all thy bands, and the people that is with thee: I will give thee unto the ravenous birds of every sort, and to the beasts of the field to be devoured.... So will I make My holy name known in the midst of My people Israel; and I will not let them pollute My holy name any more: and the heathen shall know that I am the Lord, the Holy One in Israel.... And they that dwell in the cities of Israel shall go forth, and shall set on fire and burn the weapons, both the shields and the bucklers, the bows and the arrows, and the handstaves,and the spears, and they shall burn them with fire seven years: so that they shall take no wood out of the field, neither cut down any out of the forests; for they shall burn the weapons with fire: and they shall spoil those that spoiled them, and rob those that robbed them, saith the Lord God. And it shall come to pass in that day, that I will give unto Gog a place there of graves in Israel, the valley of the passengers on the east of the sea: and it shall stop the noses of the passengers: and there shall they bury Gog and all his multitude: and they shall call it The valley of Hamon-gog. And seven months shall the house of Israel be burying of them, that they may cleanse the land. Yea, all the people of the land shall bury them; and it shall be to them a renown the day that I shall be glorified, saith the Lord God. And they shall sever out men of continual employment, passing through the land to bury with the passengers those that remain upon
the face of the earth, to cleanse it: after the end of seven months shall they search."
Still further, you will now note that all these wonders God does for His people, not because they have been good, or because they are now good, but for God's own great name. Listen to what the Lord Himself says:
Ezek. 36:22-24 -- "Therefore say unto the house of Israel, thus saith the Lord God; I do not this for your sakes, O house of Israel, but for Mine holy name's sake, which ye have profaned among the heathen, whither ye went. And I will sanctify My great name, which was profaned among the heathen, which ye have profaned in the midst of them; and the heathen shall know that I am the Lord, saith the Lord God, when I shall be sanctified in you before their eyes. For I will take you from among the heathen, and gather you out of all countries, and will bring you into your own land."
According to this, God restores the land to His chosen people, not because they as a people are good, but because he wants to vindicate His own name among the heathen.
As the time approaches for the cleansing to take place a call for spiritual awakening will be made:
Isa. 52:1 -- "Awake, awake; put on thy strength, O Zion; put on thy beautiful garments, O Jerusalem, the holy city: for henceforth there shall no more come into thee the uncircumcised and the unclean."
Inspiration here declares that after this call for revival and reformation, from then on the sinners will not be permitted to have any part among the people that have been cleansed.
The prophet Nahum, too, is a witness of this call
for Reformation. He writes:
Nah. 1:15 -- "Behold upon the mountains the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace! O Judah, keep thy solemn feasts, perform thy vows: for the wicked shall no more pass through thee; he is utterly cut off."
Here you see that the announcement of this long-expected event is to be made by someone's publications. Moreover, he publishes peace and thus announces the restoration of the Kingdom. This is the only peace that the world can have. There is to be no other. Those who keep God's solemn "feasts" and perform their vows shall have this peace. None others shall.
In our study today we have summarized some of the things which will take place during the time of the end, but the most important thing, so far as you are concerned, is the decision you are now left to make.