Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread,"
The Seven Seals of Revelation (chapters 5-8) are an overview of world history so clear that even a young person can understand. They take us from the apostles through the bloody massacres of Christians under the pagan Roman Empire, the breakdown of the Empire, the great "falling away" from the truth that nearly killed true Christianity inside the church, the horrible persecutions of Daniel's 1260 years of the Dark Ages. Then they carry us into the final "time of the end" when a people is to be prepared for the second coming of Christ. The great Seventh Seal is the triumph of the Son of God in His great controversy with Satan. Breathtaking!
When the great Sixth Seal was broken, magnificent events were to follow, telling the world that Daniel's "time of the end" was near. The first: "behold, there was a great earthquake." Other celestial "signs" were to follow: "The sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became like blood. And the stars of heaven fell to the earth, as a fig tree drops its late figs when it is shaken by a mighty wind" (6:12, 13).
All through the horrors of the Dark Ages faithful Christians loved the truth of the Bible. They recognized the terrible Lisbon earthquake of November 1, 1755, as the first of those "signs." Not only did it shake Europe physically, it did so in every other way. John Wesley saw it as a divine judgment on the immorality of Europe.
The same devout Bible readers saw the mysterious Dark Day of May 19, 1780, as the next "sign." And when the greatest celestial display of falling stars ever recorded came on November 13, 1833, thousands were convinced: God was at work preparing a people for the coming of Christ.
Now, more than 180 years have gone by since the time of which Jesus said, "This generation will by no means pass away till all these things are fulfilled" (Matt. 24:34). Faith in the nearness of Christ's return seems what He talked about when He asked, "When the Son of man comes, will He really find faith on the earth?" (Luke 18:8).
The answer is Yes! The same spirit that recognized those "signs in the heavens" lives today in the hearts of those who understand there is a reason for the mysterious "delay." They will "keep the faith."
--Robert J. Wieland
From the "Dial Daily Bread" Archive: May 18, 2003.
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