Volume 48 | Number 5 | September–October 2000

Inglés Español

The Prime Meridian of Human History

By Dr. H. T. Spence

American history will mark the year 2020 as its most crucial year yet. This year has seen state powers manifesting mandates that literally have altered the living of its citizens, even boldly attacking many churches through heavy fines or closings (comfortably ignored by the media). These mandates also extended to closing or limiting attendance to small businesses in many states. Some governors confined travel and even dictated what could or could not be purchased. With all their mandates, still well over one thousand cities were subjected to burnings, riots, and destruction from so-called “peaceful demonstrations” by Marxist organizations (and financially sponsored by billionaires who sympathize with America’s overthrow). The statistics of COVID-19 have been greatly exaggerated to extend and maintain control of the people. (Only about twenty percent of North Carolina COVID-19 deaths were actually caused by the virus.) The social(ism) distancing and the “mark of the mask” have become a powerful weapon for political correctness. And now the social media has entered a frenzy on the day of the election to inform us that the virus has “spiked out of control,” to induce continued fear and panic.

Amidst all that has happened this year, we now witness the utter confusion that reigns through the manipulative Liberals concerning the 2020 elections. Only providence knows the future, and what crucial events will take place in these coming days. Has the Coronavirus been a mysterious conspiracy planted by the Liberals and Progressives even in crucial areas where they knew that the President, his wife, and other members of his cabinet could be infected? Or is it a sabotage in chemical warfare by the Chinese in retaliation to the President? Or is it a paradoxical providence that God Himself has brought about through a unique series of events that culminated at the last moment? Truly, only He alone knows how it happened and what its outcome will be? If it is a conspiracy by the Democrats, or even sabotage by China, the matter was permitted by a sovereign God. What will the final outcome of the voting be for this final downfall of Western civilization? This truly is an hour when the Devil’s advocates are endeavoring to press the reset button that will radically change the world for the global government of the coming Antichrist.

The Prime Meridian of History

Is 2020 the pivotal year in biblical history where the unfolding civilizations of Daniel’s image (Dan. 2) will now transition from the ankles of iron into the feet of iron and clay (the time of the Antichrist)? Although the Bible was completed some two thousand years ago, it has already revealed a coming crucial, global-changing event. Perhaps an observation in the concept of time would provide an allegory for us concerning Heaven’s view.

One of the thirty-two boroughs in Greater London, England, is Greenwich located on the south bank of the Thames River. Henry VIII was born there and married four times at this geographical borough. Its prominence in history dates back to A.D. 900; it later became crucial in England’s maritime expansion. In 1423, a watchtower was erected that eventually became the Royal Observatory (this observatory was moved to Sussex in 1958). When Britain became the foremost maritime province of Europe (1700s), Greenwich became the center or the hub of navigational charting and mapping. Other nations began to accept Greenwich as the prime meridian for longitude reference for the world’s navigation. An imaginary North-South line on the earth’s surface was drawn through Greenwich, London, and both geographic poles. Greenwich was 0 degrees longitude, and all other points of longitudes (east and west) were measured from it. All time factors are measured from the high noon of Greenwich, and twenty-four longitude lines were drawn for navigation and time. The world’s time is primarily based on Greenwich as the “prime meridian.”

Similar to the world’s prime meridian of Greenwich, God has established a prime meridian of historical time. Heaven’s line was drawn by God when He sent His Son to this earth. This is reflected in our calendar with the abbreviations B.C. and A.D. (As Christians, we do not use the politically correct terminology of B.C.E. and C.E.)

The Bible is very clear that all points of history and time are toward Him or from Him. The Faith of man in the eternal, sovereign, and personal God begins with Adam and continues down through six millennia. For the first four millennia, it was prophetic faith in the first coming of Christ and His death. Since Christ’s death and resurrection, historic faith looks back to His first coming. In God’s sight there was no other event that became the axial moment of all history; the coming of His Son has been the prime meridian of the ages!

When man fell into sin, the fountain of his being, his spiritual heart, the seat of self became immediately depraved. Innately, left alone man is unable to do any spiritual good in the sight of God. This powerful root of sin can in time interweave itself with the Devil, ultimately destroying all humanity. Man’s heart, even at its best is altogether vanity.

The Heart of Man versus the Heart of God

The first and fourth times that the word heart is mentioned in Scripture are most noteworthy. The first is found in Genesis 6:5: “The imagination of the thoughts of his [man’s] heart was only evil continually.” There are theological systems that believe that men prior to the death of Christ were saved by the keeping of the Law. This error forces a belief of Pelagianism (that man is born sinless) or Semi-Pelagianism (that man is born with the capability to work out merit before God for salvation). The biblical condition of man’s fallen heart is clarified in the crucial verse of Genesis 6:5 (“only evil continually”).

The fourth time the word heart is mentioned is in Genesis 8:21: “For the imagination of man’s heart is evil from his youth.” The Hebrew word for youth is neurim, speaking of a child from around the age of four leading up to nearly twenty-one. This plural word speaks of the stages of youth that manifest the heart of youth. We must remember that man is polluted at the center of his being (the heart); all issues of his life flow from that polluted fountain. This condition of the heart is unalterable by man.

In contrast, the Bible’s second and third mentioning of the word heart is in the context of God’s heart. Genesis 6:6 declares, “And it repented the LORD that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart.” The Hebrew word grieved means that it “pained” God at His heart. The intrinsic holiness and righteousness of God was pained, deeply grieved over the sin of man. The third time heart is mentioned is in Genesis 8:21: “And the LORD smelled a sweet savour, and the LORD, said in his heart, I will not again curse the ground any more for man’s sake.” This second glimpse of God’s heart reveals His great grace amidst His grieved heart for man. Grace is the term covering all benefits given by God to fallen man on this fallen planet. Truly grace is the aftermath of judgment.

We are also drawn to other words of importance in Genesis 24:27 spoken by Abraham’s unnamed servant in prayer (after he discerned at a well that Rebekah was the answer to his prayer for a bride for Isaac): “Blessed be the LORD God of my master Abraham, who hath not left destitute my master of his mercy and his truth.” God has always been truthful with man. This precious word truth means “not to cover,” “not to escape notice,” or “not to forget.” Truth must triumph! As man tries to cover what is evil, God will not allow such covering. He sends the Law to reveal sin. Note John 15:22, “If I had not come and spoken unto them, they had not had sin: but now they have no cloke for their sin.”

With sin’s revelation, God will not leave us destitute of mercy; this expression is an outward manifestation of His pity. Yet, we read in Psalm 85:10, “Mercy and truth are met together; righteousness and peace have kissed each other.” Mercy and truth met at the Prime Meridian of Calvary for our redemption. It was there that righteousness and peace kissed each other!

The Prime Meridian of Redemption

What prompted God’s heart to establish a prime meridian for all humanity to know this meeting of mercy and truth, where righteousness and peace kissed one another? In this hell-bent age, when the powers of evil and wickedness are converging upon God and His anointed, the motive of God is clearly revealed in 1 John 4:9, 10:

In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him. Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.

God would not spare His Son but delivered Him into the hands of justice, to die in the room and stead of sinners! Love was the motive in the heart of God to erect this high-noon prime-meridian redemption.

Additionally, we also read that the grace of God was involved in Christ’s dying for the ungodly:

But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man (Heb. 2:9).

God “gave” and “then” sent His Apostle, His Son, to die; the grace of God was the cause! Luke 1:72 reveals that it was “to perform the mercy promised to our fathers, and to remember his holy covenant.” We who were appointed to wrath became vessels of mercy in the sight of God! He was moved by the love, grace, and mercy within Himself to work His all-wise prime-meridian appointment of Redemption.

But what was the procuring cause? The author of redemption is Christ. The Father loved the Son and appointed Him. It was likewise love, grace, and mercy that wrought in the heart of the Son to accept this call of the Father and to engage in this prime-meridian work of redemption. The Son’s delighting love for the Father led Him to give Himself to sanctify us. Christ gave Himself fully first to His Father whereby then He gave Himself for mankind. Without any merit, we have received grace from Him Who is full of grace.

The hour of this prime-meridian moment was high noon on the cross of Calvary. At the sixth hour (12:00 noon) when all became dark, Christ became the worm of sin (Ps. 22:6), was made sin for every man (2 Cor. 5:21), and bore in His body our sins (1 Pet. 2:24). He drank the fullness of the cup of God’s immeasurable wrath; He died the death of hell for us. So often we view God the Father as a spectator of the cross scene that Good Friday; or, we see Him as the Judge with vehement wrath. We should see that the Father “was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them” (2 Cor. 5:19)!


Hebrews 1:2 states, “[God] hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he had appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds” [or, the Received Text Greek rendering, “through whom indeed the ages he made”]. This text declares that God has ordained the ages! These ages are ordained in His Son! As one writer of the past stated,

Time is a relation of succession between events or phenomena; duration is the attribute of continuance in events or phenomena; eternity is the attribute of unlimited duration in Infinite and Absolute Being.

There is but one Being without beginning or end—God. Eternity is an attribute of God. We are not to discuss anything beyond one eternity, for there are not eternities. We may speak of eternity past and of eternity future because time is natural to earthly thinking. With God there is only one eternity; yet, time is fragmentary in that for man it is broken up into ages.

Whereas eternity had no beginning, there was a beginning for time. Within time there is a duration which can be called an age. The Bible speaks of “the age,” “the ages,” and “the ages of the ages.” An age is only a fragment of time. The ages have been arranged by God within the duration of time. And God ordained the ages. What does this mean?

Somewhere in eternity God through His Son planned the ages to come in time; God settled and established all the ages of history. It seems that no two ages are of the same duration, and yet God has appointed the time when each age shall close.

All history and humanity are seen by God through the precious work of His Son at the cross of Calvary. All time and ages flow either to the First Coming of Christ or away from that Work. The glorious Second Coming of Christ and its consummation in the Millennium are all contingent upon the prime meridian of the First Coming.

We must remember that the earth will be forever. Although there are a great number of passages in the New Testament that refer to the “end of the world,” in each and every case the Greek word for world is aion, or the “end of the age.” Time is divided into many different ages, and this present age surely will come to a close; however, there is no scripture to teach that this earth will ever be destroyed permanently. We are to be looking for new heavens and a new earth “wherein dwelleth righteousness” (2 Pet. 3:13). As for the perpetuity of the earth, there are many scriptures that speak of this (Ps. 119:90; 104:5; Eccles. 1:4).

Out of the planets and heavenly systems of the universe, God loves this planet above all. Here His Son came and lived among men; here His Son gave Himself as a supreme love sacrifice to the Father and a supreme vicarious sacrifice for all humanity; here His Son revealed the Father in a perfect human life; here He revealed a perfect gospel; here the resurrection of His Son took place; and here His Son will return and reign. This planet is the love-gift of the Father to the Son; the title deed of humanity was taken by Him as the worthy One to do so (Rev. 5:9). Though we as children of God go to heaven when we die or will be taken there through the Rapture, we will return to the earth for the Battle of Armageddon and for the Millennial Reign of Christ. When God makes the new earth, we will inherit it for all eternity. Earth has been our home where we met Christ and lived for Him; it is where His character was forged in us; and it is where God will bring His throne—from heaven to earth (Rev. 22:3). This footstool of God will finally become the throne room of God, the center of the universe!

No matter what happens in the consummation of the year 2020, God is still on His Throne! He views this planet singularly through the prime-meridian event of His Son’s coming to this earth some two thousand years ago. It is this event that all history either points forward to or points back to. The earth is still “the LORD’S, . . . the world, and they that dwell therein.” (Ps. 24:1). The kings of the earth today denounce God’s ownership of this planet and are aggressively motivated to take it away from Him for themselves. But Christ, the Prime Meridian of all history will come back one day, and the kingdoms of this world will become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ. All other lords will find their place with the Devil in the Lake of Fire—forever! But until then, amidst the abounding of iniquity within the governments of this world in the End Time, we must endure unto the end and make ourselves ready, a people prepared for the Lord. A Tribulation Period is yet ahead for this world system and its governments. The powers of darkness have now entered a collaborating covenant with the world’s leadership; it is an affront against God and His righteousness as well as the saints of God. Our only hope is the secret coming of our Beloved Saviour. We pray, “Even so, come, Lord Jesus!”