AND THE REWARD OF ONE’s FAITH IN GOD
Minister of D. Seventh-day Adventists
Sabbath, September 20, 1947
Mt. Carmel Chapel
Our subject for this afternoon is found in Daniel, chapters 11 and 12. Chapter 12 contains the "time of trouble," but the time of the "time of trouble" is found in the eleventh chapter of Daniel. The twelfth chapter is, of course, a continuation of the eleventh chapter. We shall begin our study with --
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.
Daniel was told to shut and seal the book even to the time of the end. The book, therefore, was not for the understanding of the people before the time of the end. So, then, when the book is unsealed and understood we may know that the time of the end is come.
Besides this sign, though, there is the sign of men running to and fro, and an increase of knowledge. The whole world knows that throughout the years of history, prior to our time, the horse was the means of man’s speediest transportation and communication, and this method continued throughout the centuries. The angel nevertheless informed Daniel that in the time of the end there would be a decided change, that men would then run to and fro. And touching the time of the end according to Nahum’s prophecy, Inspiration declares: "The chariots shall rage in the streets, they shall justle one against another in the broad ways: they shall seem like torches, they shall run like the lightnings." Nah. 2:4.
Now that knowledge has been increased since the last century, or longer, and now that steam, oil, and electric engines have revolutionized the world, and have made it possible for men to run to and fro with unprecedented speed, the subject stands as clear as crystal that we are now living in the time of the end. There can be no doubt about this. This is positive truth, truth that you cannot gainsay and yet believe the Bible and history.
To find the beginning of the time of the end, we must read
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.
Not in, but at the time of the end shall the king of the south push at the king of the north. This prophetic war, therefore, marks the beginning of the time of the end. To find the time of the conflict between the two kings we need to read --
Verses 41-43—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. He shall stretch forth his hand also upon the countries: and the land of Egypt shall not escape. 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.
Mark carefully that at the downfall of the king of the south, the king of the north expands and overthrows many countries; that he enters the glorious land (Palestine), but Edom, Moab, and the children of Ammon escape out of his hand. And remember that this work of conquest was to begin at the time of the end. Hence, in the time of the end the king of the south declines, while the king of the north expands. And since the conflict starts at the time of the end, the defeat of the one and the victory of the other are completed in and during the time of the end.
Next, to learn when the years of the time of the end began, and who the king of the south and who the king of the north are, all you need to know is when such a clash began, and who in the time of the end ceded Egypt and Palestine to an enemy power, what power has as a result shrunk during the time of the end, and what power has expanded. There is but one answer, and that is: While the Ottoman Empire has been shrinking since 1669 A.D., the British Empire has been expanding, and it today rules Egypt and Palestine. Hence, today Turkey is the king of the south, and Great Britain, the king of the north; and according to this prophetic conflict, the time of the end started at the beginning of the eighteenth century.
Here is a map that demonstrates the rise and decline of the Ottoman (Turkish) empire. Look at it, study it. And on the opposite page is the expansion of the English empire during the same period of time.
(Adapted from the Miracle of England, by Anre Maurois, Harper & Brothers Publishers.)
This, you see, is positive truth, not guesswork, not theory, not a far–fetched idea.
Next note that Edom and Moab escape out of his hand. Yes, the king of the north shall lose them.
As the Second World War has, however, brought the first reverses to Great Britain, and as we here see her in prophecy, her part in World War II must also be found in Daniel 11. Let us then study the remaining verses of the chapter.
Verse 44—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 take away many.
In the time of the end, after having overflown the previously mentioned countries, the king of the north is again seen in conflict, but not with the king of the south. He is drawn into this last conflict by what is reported to him from the east and from the north. Now that World War II developed from the directions specified by Inspiration,—Germany on the north, and Japan on the east, besides Russia in the extreme north, —facts so fresh in our minds are bound to remove all doubt but that World War II is the one spoken of here in prophecy. And let us not forget that World War II has not actually ended, that it is yet to be finished. I say, in the face of these facts now known worldwide, it is difficult for one to deny what is here brought to light.
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.
Now that Great Britain’s economic structure is in grave danger of collapsing, and as her empire is fast crumbling, we fear that the fulfilment of verse 45 is perhaps closer than one might realize. If only those who head the empire, and also the heads of our own nation knew and understood prophecy, we believe Great Britain could come out victoriously as did Ninevah of old after Jonah’s great episode.
We all know that Great Britain has been helped by the United States of America more than once. But if we rightly understand this verse, the events of which are but a continuation of those found in verse 44, the king will surely come to his end and none shall help him. This may transpire before World War II is entirely over, and yet it may not. We gather this from the fact that the event of verse 44 is in connection with the event of verse 45. Inspiration seems to allow no time between verses 44 and 45. We do not know the turns which the war will take, but we know that the prophecies of the Bible never fail.
As to his planting his tabernacles in the glorious holy mountain, it is not too clear, for planting the tabernacles of his palace before he comes to his end does not necessarily mean moving his throne there. It could be taken to mean having a branch of his palace there. If he is to plant his tabernacles there while Michael stands up, though, then the only locality other than the Holy Land that we know of, is at Mount Sinai, between the Mediterranean and the Red Sea.
From the study of the eleventh chapter of Daniel, we have learned several positive truths: 1. That the time of the end began in the eighteenth century; 2. That the king of the south is the Ottoman empire; 3. That the king of the north at the present time is Great Britain in particular; 4. That World War II is the war in Daniel eleven.
Now that the prophecy of the eleventh chapter of Daniel continues through the twelfth, we shall turn to verse one.
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, everyone that shall be found written in the book.
At that time (that is, at the time the king of the north comes to his end and none help him) shall Michael stand; and at the same time there shall be trouble such as never was even to that very time. Only God’s people, who have their names written in the book, will be delivered. None other.
This study has led us step by step down to our own day. Through this study we see that the time of trouble is but a step in the future, that the only event yet to be fulfilled before the trouble begins is the king of the north coming to his end. Then follows the reward of the faithful.
What a solemn time we have come to, Brothers, Sisters. Do you realize that if you do not now make an effort to put your name in the book, it may be forever too late? And is it not better to have your name there even if the trouble were a hundred years in the future? Now is the time to act. Now is the day of salvation brought to you. Today Inspiration pleads; if you hear His voice harden not your hearts. Only those who heed the revealed Word of God will find deliverance and peace, —none others will.
Verse 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 we are told that in the time of trouble these arise, some to live forever and some to die again.
Do you now realize that not only the time of trouble is at the door, but even this special resurrection? Do you actually see that in the time of trouble, while the living saints are being delivered these dead who rise "to everlasting life," are also delivered from their graves? Do you realize that this time of trouble is in "the great and dreadful day of the Lord," the day which the promised prophet Elijah announces? Do you actually know that he is to turn the hearts of the fathers and of the children toward each other? lest the Lord smite "the earth with a curse." Mal. 4:5, 6. Do you see that the prophet appears in a day he can restore all things, everything that was lost through sin, even the Kingdom? Do you know that the resurrection of Daniel 12 is not the same as the resurrections of 1 Thessalonians and of Revelation 20:5?
1Thess. 4:16—For the Lord Himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first.
Rev. 20:4-6—And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the Word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years. But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection. Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with Him a thousand years.
The apostle Paul obviously speaks of the same resurrection as the Apostle John because in it only the holy ones are raised. Both Paul’s and John’s descriptions make clear that these arise at the commencement of the thousand years. This we see from the facts that they lived with Christ a thousand years, and that they were caught up to meet the Lord in the air, that they were on the way to live with Christ during the thousand years, not Christ with them.
Now to line up all the resurrections, we must take into account also the one of Ezekiel.
Ezek. 37:1, 11-14 — The hand of the Lord was upon me, and carried me out in the Spirit of the Lord, and set me down in the midst of the valley which was full of bones. . . . Then He said unto me, Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel: behold, they say, Our bones are dried, and our hope is lost: we are cut off for our parts. Therefore prophesy and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord God; Behold, O My people I will open your graves, and cause You to come up out of your graves, and bring you into the land of Israel. And ye shall know that I am the Lord, when I have opened your graves, O My people, and brought you up out of your graves, and shall put My Spirit in you, and ye shall live, and I shall place you in your own land: then shall ye know that I the Lord have spoken it, and performed it, saith the Lord.
In this resurrection only God’s own people, Israel, arise with no sinner among them. Moreover, these do not meet the Lord in the air; they are taken to the land of Israel, Palestine. This resurrection, therefore, is not the same as the resurrection of 1 Thessalonians, of the Revelation, or of Daniel 12. It must be a separate one.
Let us now come back to—
Dan. 12:1-3—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, everyone that shall be found written in the book. 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. And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever.
In these three verses several things clearly stand out: (1) Only those whose names are written in the books are delivered; there are therefore no "foolish" ones among them; (2) Those who are resurrected, however, are mixed, both foolish and wise come up; (3) The statement "and they that be wise [implying that some be foolish] shall shine as the brightness of the firmament" indicates that these "wise" ones are from among the raised; (4) That if the wise are from among the resurrected and turn many to righteousness, then they must be resurrected in probationary time, in time of salvation.
"Your work, my work, will not cease with this life. For a little while we may rest in the grave, but, when the call comes, we shall, in the kingdom of God, take up our work once more."—Testimonies, Vol. 7, p.17.
Verses 4,10—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. 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.
Now what is meant by being wise?—Let us turn to—
Matt. 25:1-4—Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom. And five of them were wise, and five were foolish. They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them: but the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps.
Here we see that the wise are those who take extra oil, extra Truth that lightens the rest of their way. Finally, it plainly appears that this mixed resurrection is a test; that is, they are all given the opportunity to be wise, to turn many to righteousness, but only a part of them do so. Some of them again fall into sin, and therefore they awake to shame and everlasting contempt (everlasting disobedience), but the wise awake to everlasting life, never again to die. This plainly shows that those who give themselves to wickedness up to the time they die, would not turn to righteousness even though they be given a second chance. The extra oil (Truth for this time) is what decides each one’s destiny. The wise shall embrace the "additional Truth," while the foolish will not. Sin is indeed a mystery.