Volume 48 | Number 1 | January–February 2020

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Our Present Night in History


By Dr. H. T. Spence

The burden of Dumah. He calleth to me out of Seir, Watchman, what of the night? Watchman, what of the night? The watchman said, The morning cometh, and also the night: if ye will enquire, enquire ye: return, come (Isaiah 21:11, 12).

Since the Fall, man has been in the night season of history; we Christians with anticipation are awaiting the coming day. There is a scriptural sense in which we as Christians are of the day (Rom. 13:11–14). This “day” is also found in the scriptural context of the second coming of Christ for His saints (2 Pet. 1:20) as well as in the context of Christ setting up His kingdom. Thus, though we are children of the day, we anticipate the dawning of the Day of Christ in history.

When the New Testament speaks of the End Time, it concerns three important aspects: (1) the End Time of the church, which the Rapture will resolve; (2) the End Time of the Tribulation Period, which the Battle of Armageddon will resolve; and (3) the End Time of the Millennium, which the Battle of Gog and Magog will resolve. Following these events, history enters into the Eternal Golden Age of a new heaven and a new earth (Revelation 21 & 22).

Presently, we are living in the End Time of the church which will transition to the Tribulation Period. This season is my appointed generation, and I must discern my night without allowing its powers to affect my day life in Christ. Our present night season is preparing for the coming of two great figures for this earth—the Antichrist and the False Prophet. These men will be global leaders. Antichrist will lead political globalism for a season, and the False Prophet will lead religious globalism. Just before their appearance in history, there will be a generation of God’s saints living and preaching. It is therefore most important that God’s watchmen are in touch with heaven to give to God’s people the condition and the unfolding of their appointed night season and how they are to live in this night season. The saints do cry, “Watchman, what of the night?!” Although we know the morning is coming, we are presently in the deepening darkness of man’s fallen night.

Our Present Night

The year 2020 concludes the second decade of the 21st century. As a minister of the Gospel, we have been warning our dear people since the last half of 2019, that the year 2020 would be the most volatile year against our country, against the ministry, against the Christian home, and against Christian individuals. We called them to prepare spiritually for this year. If we are not able to keep up with the footmen in our trials and testings of life, we will not be able to keep up with the coming horsemen. If we are failing in the land of peace, what will we do at the time of the swelling of Jordan? Such were the words of warning by the Lord to Jeremiah (Jer. 12:5). Having now entered 2020, we have already met the swelling of the Jordan nationally and, no doubt, in the testings of our families.

In 2016, God shockingly brought to America a president that even surprised the world. Since then, he has become the most hated man in our history by the liberals. It was strongly believed that Hillary Clinton would be the winning ticket; all the polls and news media predicted her the guaranteed winner. But God radically brought in Donald Trump, this non-politician, this non-politically correct businessman, who publicly declared he would drain the political swamp of Washington of its evil beasts and uncover the powerful deep state that behind the scenes was controlling our government and country. Mr. Trump was like no other man who had ever entered the presidency of these United States. Whatever one views him to be, he has been a contender for the Constitution of these United States and openly against globalism and a one-world government.

He has become the most hated man on the planet because of his natural ideology and presupposition in the old guard of capitalism, constitutionalism, and patriotism. Though he has been married three times, he has been one of the strongest presidents for the family and the dignity of the office of the presidency. He strongly believes in America’s values. Yet this man has commenced his fourth year in office with the boldest global decision he has ever had to make. He knows it may be costly for America and even the world.

From one direction he has the liberals (who hate this country) rising up against him with intense, growing hatred, believing he has entered a mad career. And then, from another direction there are the Conservatives and those who love this country praising him for doing what previous administrations would not do. January 3, 2020, this president ordered the assassination of the leader of global terrorism Qasem Soleimani and within hours launched another strike against men of Soleimani’s elite military. The world then waited to see how Iran would respond.

Over the past three years, we have declared three principles concerning where we are in history. The first principle is that according to Matthew 24, we are living in the end of the End Time. This is a unique time in history when it will seem all hell is breaking loose on this planet. The most radical of changes will take place politically, religiously, and in nature. Although the evil of man is fully involved in these changes, Scripture is very clear that God is in absolute control of it all. As to the End Time (according to Matthew 24 as well as the patterns of weather recorded in the Old Testament), God is in control of the winds, the hurricanes, tornadoes, the snow, the ice, and every strange movement of weather occurring across this planet. There have been times when the Devil has stepped into our history to use weather movements for destruction against Christ and His saints. Matthew 8:26 speaks of Christ “rebuking” a storm: He would never rebuke a storm that the Father had directly sent. The Bible also speaks of the Euroclydon storm of Acts 27, which seemed to have been one through which Satan was desirous to destroy the apostle Paul. In the light of biblical truth, God’s people must not be duped by the atheistic rhetoric used today concerning “global warming” and now the contemporary concept of “climate change.” God is in control of the weather and the climate changes on the planet. Atheistic man refuses to acknowledge this truth.

The second principle is that God is in absolute control of governmental leaders. Daniel 2:21 states, “And he changeth the times and the seasons: he removeth kings, and setteth up kings.” This principle also includes the rise and fall of nations. If a person believes in God, and if a person declares himself to be a “biblical” Christian, that person must believe a Sovereign God placed Donald Trump into leadership and that God will be the one to take him out of office according to His time.

The third principle is that the purpose of heaven’s appointment of leaders is only known by God. God may appoint a leader merely for a short reprieve for God’s people delaying (in human terms) the inevitable. God may use a leader to intensify hatred among other nations against a nation such as America. Though Mr. Trump will not be the one to bring it about, God will be the one to do so through him, if this be God’s choice. Though much in the natural has been accomplished by this president (the economy, employment, the black community, the Latino community, the Asian community, burdensome regulations and taxes), he also has been a great trouble to those who long to destroy Western civilization.

When the president ordered the assassination of Soleimani, he attacked an advocate of the Devil, a man who inspired and financed global terrorism. This presidential action was a bold step for him because leadership tends to fear the repercussions from such an act (and thus live with its evil even as it intensifies). Soleimani had killed hundreds of Americans and tens of thousands of his own people. This man of darkness had boldly entered Iraq once again to continue work on overthrowing its fragile government.

We know the Bible declares violence will fill the earth in the End Time. And, no doubt it is true that to fight against violence will only increase violence. To stand against unrighteousness, error, and the apostasy in this generation will cost us the loss of friends and relatives as well as the increased difficulties for us as Christians. If John the Baptist would simply have kept his mouth shut before the court of Herod, would he have kept his head? Having kept his head, though, he may have lost his soul. It is becoming clearer every day as this generation deepens in sin that true ministers’ messages, responses to inquiries, and crucial decisions are becoming more costly. These are not only difficult times; these are costly times. People may lose their jobs, their money, their possessions, their relatives, their tangible ministries, their reputation. These losses may be ahead; we are not exempt nor above God’s people of the past.

The Night Season of the End Time

But Christians must also be aware that the hour in which we live is not only the end of the End Time but also the night season of history. Note Matthew 24:15:

When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:) Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains.

We know this prophecy is dealing with 2 Thessalonians 2:4, when Antichrist enters the Jewish Temple in Jerusalem during the Tribulation Period and declares himself to be God. But from another aspect, the End Time will also give witness (according to Rev. 3:14–22) that this is what has happened in the end of the Church Ages: Christianity has been polluted, mongrelized, and apostatized. True Christianity now is found only in God’s remnant. True Christianity is increasingly viewed with disdain and animosity by the world and the contemporary church. And people are getting bolder in their despising attacks.

The question rightfully should be asked, “Have we entered the final world-age that preludes the coming of the visible Antichrist?” If the answer to this question is in the affirmative, we can expect fewer churches to even desire what God’s remnant believe and what they possess in their personal walks with Christ.

Likewise, we will witness the intense, aggressive hatred expressed from the world governments (including America) against Christianity. The shutting down of our schools, our ministries, and our churches will become more prominent in public discussions of political leaders. Finally, governmental powers will invade the private sanctum of our homes.

Conclusion

Amidst the term End Time and the end of the End Time, there is also another principle found within Scripture designated as the “night season” of history. We must remember that God’s biblical remnant throughout church history have always anticipated that great day to dawn and the day star to arise in their hearts. Our generation may be the one to witness this glorious event at the very moment when the world is poised at the threshold of the prophesied Man-of-Sin’s world rulership. Could our generation be the one in history to bear up under the world’s and the Church’s climax of hatred against the Lord and against His anointed?

We may witness that which God’s men of the past have only anticipated. We may witness the resolve of times as presented in 1 Corinthians 10:11:

Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come.

The “end” of every previous generation will collectively come upon that generation which will prepare for the coming generation of the Antichrist. At the same time God’s remnant is to be a part of the hindering force mentioned in 2 Thessalonians 2:6, 7:

For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth [hindereth] will let [hinder], until he be taken out of the way.

This context concerns the rapture of the saints, who have been empowered by the Holy Spirit as restrainers in the End Time. There is also the witness of this in Revelation 12:5, when the “manchild” will be caught up to heaven. Some believe that the man-child is Jesus Christ coming out of the Woman of 12:1, which they would say is Israel. But from a New Testament view, this woman is the Visible Church, and the true saints are those who will come out of her. Though Christ is presented in Revelation 19:15 as one Who will rule “with a rod of iron,” this phrase is also used of the saints in Revelation 2:27. The Devil will do everything he can to devour this man-child birthed by the woman (the institutional church) before it is taken in what we believe to be the Rapture. That final season (when the unborn child is coming to full term) will be the world’s darkest hour in history.

The Bible speaks of the night and the day from two perspectives. There is first the perspective of all humanity born in the night, the darkness of sin, and who through the Lord Jesus Christ have been brought into the day. We observed this at the outset of this article in Ephesians 5:8 as well as Romans 13:12. But the second biblical perspective of the night/day according to history and God’s timetable is the Second Coming of Christ (2 Thess. 2:1, 2 and Matt. 24). The night season has been a long one, with the unfolding of the Body of Christ in the various seasons of the night.

We truly believe we are nearing the “Day of Christ,” the Rapture. And it will come to an hour in the night season about which Christ warned in Matthew 24, when God’s saints will be hated of all nations; and (in Matt. 10:22) when we will be hated of all men.

We are in the culmination of the night season; strange things happen in the night. We read of disciples sleeping in the night in a garden when they should have been watching and praying. Betrayals under the guise of a kiss take place in the night season (yes, betrayals are coming). Disciples scattered at night when the Lord was betrayed. Disciples denied their Lord in the night season, as did Peter. We can expect to see more and more offenses to come. Eyes wax dim in the night, as did Eli’s. Warnings came to Joseph in the night seasons as they did to Joseph, Mary’s husband. Imprisonment is known in the night season (Paul and Silas).

But, thank God, there is the hope of the Rapture to take place in a night season. And there is the hope, aboard our boat in the storms of life in the night season, that Christ will come to meet us (John 6:15–21), where we will immediately be found with Him at the shore of heaven.

Let us pray, at this late hour, “Even so, come, Lord Jesus.”