Signs of the Times
"But Daniel, keep this prophecy a secret; seal it up so that it will not be understood until the end times, when travel and education shall be vastly increased."1
In 1927 in Signs of the Times, John Lewis Shuler wrote: "Sir Isaac Newton made a most daring forecast two hundred years ago regarding a future development in rapid transit, which at that time seemed absolutely beyond the possibility of ever seeing realization. Newton declared that he was convinced from a study of Bible prophecy that there was destined to be a marvelous increase in the speed of transportation on the earth.
“‘I believe,’ Newton said, ‘that in the providence of God, though the method now be entirely hidden, men will yet travel on the earth at the rate of fifty miles an hour.’ Newton lived from 1642-1727. In his day the most rapid travel by land was by horse. Stagecoaches drawn about eight miles an hour by horses held the record on land."
I imagine that many would have thought that Newton was crazy when he based such a wild prophecy for his day on what he had read in the Bible. He was certainly right, even if he grossly underestimated the speed at which people would travel in the future. Imagine if he could have seen our day when thousands of people are flying daily across the world at speeds more like 500 mph., not to mention the incredible speed that astronauts travel when circling the earth and/or fly to the moon.
So what about Daniel's prophecy approximately 2,500 years ago? Many Bible students believe that we are living in or are close to the end times—the time when Jesus Christ will come again. Not only has travel speed vastly increased but think about knowledge. We are living today in a time of a knowledge explosion—especially so because of computers, the Internet, email and blogs.
Christ's first coming is an indisputable fact of history. He promised he would come again so we can be just as certain of his second coming—but only God knows the exact day and hour. The important thing is not the date of Christ’s return, but that we are ready for him when he comes. "Therefore, keep watch," Jesus said, "because you do not know on what day your Lord will come. So you also must be ready, because the Son of Man [Jesus Christ] will come at an hour when you do not expect him."2
The times and circumstances around us may seem uncertain right now, but let us be sure of this... Christ will return. So whatever we do, let us live for him now and be prepared for eternity in Heaven with our Savior.
Suggested prayer: "Dear God, thank You for Your promise that You will come again for all who believe in You and trust in You for their salvation. Help me to make sure that I will be ready for that day should it come in my lifetime so I will not be embarrassed at your coming. Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's name, amen."
1. Daniel 12:4 (TLB).
2. Matthew 24:42, 44 (NIV).
All articles on this website are written by
Richard (Dick) Innes unless otherwise stated.