Last time we looked at Jesus’ warning to His disciple about the coming of “false messiahs” in the Oliveth prophecies. We saw the two most prominent pseudo-messiahs named in the Jewish encyclopaedia namely; Moses of Crete and Bar Kokhba. Today we will go a step further to look at the other signs Jesus pointed out in Matt 24:6-7c
Question 2: What shall be the signs of thy coming? Matt 24:3
Our focus in this study will be Matt 24:6-7c, where Jesus pointed out the primary signs of His second coming.
v6. “And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet”.
Jesus told His disciples that there will be wars and rumours of wars. There have been wars all through human history, but there have never been world wars until the periods between 1914 and 1945 when the two world wars took place. There could not have been any major international wars because the means of travel and communication were not sufficient for it to happen.
First World War (1914-1918)
As human wickedness and rebellion grew over the centuries, man’s inhumanity to man also assumed unbelievable proportions as destructive weapons such as scud missiles, the surface to air missiles (SAMs), intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) were developed through an upsurge in amoral scientific and technological advancements. This led to the wanton destruction of lives and properties.
World War 1 facts and figures
World War 1 is also known as the Great War.
Started on 28 July 1914 and ended 11 November 1918.
30 nations were involved in the war.
Over 41 million casualties (both military and civilian casualties).
20 million deaths and 21 million wounded.
The war was fought by two opposing groups; the Central powers (Germany, Austria- Hungary, Italy, and Turkey), and the Allied powers (Russia, France, Great Britain, and United states).
The Allied powers had more potential wealth and spent approximately $147b and Central powers $61b to prosecute the war.
The United States spent approximately $32b or 52% of her Gross National Product to prosecute the war.
Great Britain spent ($35b), while France, Russia and Italy spent: $24b, $22b and $12b respectively to prosecute the war.
Due to the unsettled 20-year hiatus of disputes in respect of the first world war, a far more destructive war took place between 1939 and 1945 known today as World War 2.
World War 2 (1939-1945)
Facts and figures of World War 2
Started 1 September 1939 and ended 2 September 1945.
3% of the 2.3 billion of the world population perished as a result.
Some 75 million people died including approximately 20 million military personnel and over 40 million civilians, many of whom died because of deliberate genocide, massacres, mass bombings, disease, and starvation.
Approximately 6 million Jews perished in the horrors of the Holocaust under Nazi Germany led by Adolf Hitler.
6 million others also perished comprising of groups discriminated against by Nazi Germany (due to their ethnicity, religion, political beliefs and sexual orientation) namely; Jews, Soviet civilians, Poles, Serbs, Disabled people, Romani, Freemasons, Slovenes, Homosexuals, Spanish Republics and Jehovah’s Witness.
World War 2, also called the Second World War involved virtually every part of the world during the years 1939–45.
The principal belligerents were the Axis powers—Germany, Italy, and Japan—and the Allies—France, Great Britain, the United States, the Soviet Union, and, to a lesser extent, China.
It involved approximately 45 or more nations.
It is the bloodiest conflict, as well as the largest war in human history.
The aftermath of the two world wars*
Postwar issues such as reconstruction, debts and reparation.
After the second world war and its attendant proliferation of nuclear weapons and technology, terms such as Mutual Assured Destruction (MAD), (which is based on the theory of deterrence, which holds that the threat of using strong weapons against the enemy prevents the enemy’s use of those same weapons),
and Balance of Terror (BoT) (The phrase “balance of terror” is usually, but not invariably used in reference to the nuclear arms race between the United States and the Soviet Union during the Cold war) entered into the lexicon of political science and war studies.
And in contemporary times with nuclear technology in places like Iran and North Korea, the human race is in a dire strait. For instance, Kim Jong-un, the leader of North Korea a man with an unpredictable demeanour is determined and putting great efforts into developing nuclear and missile capabilities, and developing thermonuclear devices capable of being delivered by intercontinental ballistic missiles at targets in North America. Having seen the fate of Saddam Hussein in Iraq and Mohammed Gadhafi in Libya when they gave up on the development of nuclear weapons, he envisages such development as necessary to ensure his personal survival and that of his regime. Though he is apparently unperturbed and indifferent to the plight of his people, as he continually misuses the resources of the country and inflicts untold hardship on his own people. Kim Jong-un is adamant that he will not be forced by economic sanctions to back down on his nuclear ambitions.
v7. “For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines….”.
Note: It is crucial to note that in end-time prophecies on mount Oliveth that the word nation as used by Jesus is the Greek word ” ethnos ”. This means ‘ ethnic groups ”.
Jesus predicted that there would be an escalation of ethnic conflicts as the age draws to a close.
In places like south-west Nigeria, we see ethnic conflicts between the Ife and Modakeke people. The clashes between these two groups date back to 1839 and have been escalating till the present time.
The Rwandan Genocide
Rwanda a country in east-central Africa witnessed an ethnic conflict that led to the deaths approximately 500,000-1,000,000 Rwandans.
Rwanda made of three ethnic groups namely the Hutus (85%), Tutsis (14%) and Twas (1%). The Tutsis have been a minority tribe had the reins of power and the Hutus though being the majority ethnic group felt politically and economically marginalised. The genocide was sparked by the death of the Rwandan President Juvenal Habyarimana, a Hutu, when his plane was shot down above Kigali airport on 6 April 1994. This situation led to the killing of approximately 500,000-1,000,000 mostly ethnic Rwandan Tutsis by Hutus between April and June 1994 in approximately 100 days.
A famine is a widespread scarcity of food, caused by several factors including war, inflation, crop failure, population imbalance, or government policies.
Ukrainian Famine – 1932-1933
Ukrainian famine under Joseph Stalin in the Soviet Union led to the starvation and eventual deaths of approximately 10 million people mostly Ukrainians.
Great Chinese Famine- 1959-1961
Under Mao Zedong (Chairman Mao) of China, in the great Chinese famine (Great Leap Forward Famine) he was responsible for the deaths of approximately 60 million Chinese people.
Somali Famine- 2011
260,000 people died, and half of that being children.
Famine was caused by multiple factors namely, drought, conflict, rapid rising global prices and structural factors.
It is crucial to note that these wars, famines and genocides were caused by human selfishness and unjust anti-poor government policies. There will be more wars, famines and ethnic conflicts as the time of His returns draws closer.
We will continue next time by looking at the latter part of Matt 24:7 into verse 8, where Jesus warned His disciples about pestilences, earthquakes in various places as being the beginning of sorrow.
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