Declaring the End from the Beginning

By David M. McNabb

Understanding the Prophetic Intent of the Scriptural Account of the Creation

Chapter 5: Stars aren’t Born, They’re Made

And God said, ‘Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years: And let them be for lights in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth:’ and it was so. And God made two great lights; the great­er light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: he made the stars also. And God set them in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth, And to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness: and God saw that it was good. And the evening and the morning were the fourth day.” (Gen. 1:14-19)

By the beginning of the fourth millennium of the world’s history, God was ready for the next phase of His work. In creation’s fourth day, He foretold of this fourth phase by the creation of the Sun, Moon and stars.

Around the turn of the millennium, the people of God sought that they should be a kingdom. Although many cite this chain of events as an exam­ple of what happens when God’s people are disobedient, God had always planned to make Israel a kingdom. It is He who set the guidelines for Israel’s future kings. (Deut. 17:14-20)

The Kingdom of Israel became the first Sun, the great light to rule the day. Even as the Lord says of the lights of the heavens, “Let them be for signs,” He said of Israel, “Behold, I and the children whom the Lord hath given me are for signs.” (Isa. 8:18)

But God showed by the rising and setting of the Sun and the Moon, that the era of that kingdom would not last forever. That “day” dawned with Saul, reached its full glory under David and Solomon, and, to­ward the end of Solomon’s reign, began its decline. A won­der­ful, and amazing, fact is recorded here that each of these great kings, in their turn, ruled over Israel 40 years! These 120 gold­en years of Israel was an in­cred­ible time that has left an indel­ible mark, not only on the Mid­dle East, but on the whole world.

Even though it was under Solomon, whose fame was spread throughout the known world, that the kingdom reached its largest area, it was during his reign that the Sun began to set. God had given Solomon great wisdom, and had blessed him greatly. But Solomon got caught up in his wives’ idolatry, for he had “loved many strange women, together with the daughter of Pharaoh, ... of the nations concerning which the Lord said unto the children of Israel, ‘Ye shall not go in to them, neither shall they come in to you: for surely they will turn away your heart after their gods.’ ... For it came to pass, when Solomon was old, that his wives turned away his heart after other gods: and his heart was not perfect with the Lord his God, as was the heart of David his father. ... And Solomon did evil in the sight of the Lord, and went not fully after the Lord, as did David his father.” (1 Kings 11:1-8)

Solomon’s disobedience brought the wrath of God upon the kingdom. God promised to divide the kingdom, leaving the tribe of Judah to the offspring of David, but giving the other tribes to the rulership of the sons of Joseph.

For more than 250 years after the death of Solomon, many kings - some good, some evil - reigned over the two king­doms. The northern kingdom, the Kingdom of Israel, however, had more than its share of wickedness, and, in about 611 b.c., God caused them to be conquered and taken captive by the Assyrian Empire.

In Jeremiah 3, God said that Judah saw how He had dealt with Israel, but did not fear Him. Instead, she followed the same path. So, Babylon came against Judah, finally taking Jerusalem and destroying the Temple in about 497 b.c. And so the Sun set.

Under the rule of Babylon - and later, Medio-Persia - the Jews enjoyed some favor. These Gentiles had their own gods and their own customs. We are familiar with various stories which illustrate times when the worship of the secular ruling authority came into conflict with the worship of the one, true God. Each time, however, we see where this conflict led to a peculiar result: the Gentiles in charge acknowledged Jehovah!

In Daniel 2, Daniel interpret­ed the vision of King Nebuchad­nez­zar. That king of Babylon, in turn, said, “Of a truth it is, that your God is a God of gods, and a Lord of kings, and a revealer of secrets, seeing thou couldest reveal this secret.” Later, in chapter 3, when God delivered Shadrach, Meshach and Abed­nego from the fiery furnace, King Nebuchadnezzar was con­vinc­ed! “Then Nebuchadnezzar spake, and said, ‘Blessed be the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, who hath sent his angel, and delivered his servants that trusted in him, and have changed the king’s word, and yielded their bodies, that they might not serve nor worship any god, except their own God. There­fore I make a decree, That every people, nation, and lan­guage, which speak any thing amiss against the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed­nego, shall be cut in pieces, and their houses shall be made a dunghill: because there is no other God that can deliver after this sort.” (Dan. 3:28-29)

Babylon, the nation God raised up to rule while the Sun of God’s people was set, had risen up as the Moon, reflecting the light of God. Although they made no decree to worship the God of the Jews, they proclaim­ed that He was the greatest God, and that none should speak against Him.

Nevertheless, their term as “the Moon” would not last. In the king’s vision, which Daniel interpreted in chapter 2, God foretold a series of nations that would arise. After Belshazzar, son of Nebuchadnezzar, profan­ed the vessels of God’s house, God brought their rule to an end. A “new moon” arose in their place: Medio-Persia.

Darius, the king of Persia, loved Daniel very much, but was tricked by some of his advisors to pass a law barring the worship of any god other than the king. Daniel refused, and the king could not change the law. Dan­iel was doomed to the lion’s den.

The next day, the king , after fasting all night, found Daniel unhurt. God had delivered Daniel from the lions, and the king was “exceedingly glad for him!” “Then king Darius wrote unto all people, nations, and languages, that dwell in all the earth; Peace be multiplied unto you. I make a decree, That in every dominion of my kingdom men tremble and fear before the God of Daniel: for he is the living God, and stedfast for ever, and his kingdom that which shall not be destroyed, and his dominion shall be even unto the end. He delivereth and rescueth, and he worketh signs and wonders in heaven and in earth, who hath delivered Daniel from the power of the lions.” (Dan. 6:25-27)

Each in their turn, Greece, Rome, Germany, Spain, England and, today, the United States, have risen up: secular nations which acknowledge the God of Heaven, funding missionaries and promoting “Judeo-Christian” values. From time to time, God has raised up His people - natural Israel, and, later, the Early Church - as the “light of the world:” the Sun.

During the “nighttime,” when God’s people as a whole are relatively dormant, God has raised up prophets, “the stars also,” to show forth, indivi­dually, what light they could in the midst of relative darkness. The great biblical prophets were born during the fourth millen­nium: Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Nahum, Zechariah, Obadiah, etc. John the baptist and Jesus of Nazareth, the two greatest prophets, were also born right at the end of that millennium, although both of their ministries occurred after the beginning of the fifth millennium, as I will explain in the next chapter. God prophesied of the reward of these great men of God, and tied their work to the fourth day of creation, in Daniel 12:3, “And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever.”

There is a very curious fact involved in what God did - or, more specifically, did not do - on this day. On the first day, “God called the light Day, and the darkness He called Night.” On the second day, “God called the firmament Heaven.” On the third day, “God called the dry land Earth; and the gathering together of the waters called He Seas.” Here on the fourth day, however, He did not give the lights of the heavens names.

As I have shown in the previous chapters, the elements of the first three days point to a very specific, single fulfillment. These “great lights,” however, were not fulfilled by one parti­cular entity. Rather, even as the moon is new each month, so also have various nations ris­en up as God’s moon, a secu­lar govern­ment reflecting the light of God’s word, shining forth from His people which dwell in it.

Now, we see that the “Moon” of this age - America - has begun to grow dim, refusing to reflect the light of God. A new day is about to dawn! The Latter Church shall soon arise to light the world one last time before the end. Ac­cord­ing to Haggai 2:9, “The glory of this latter house shall be greater than of the former.” For a few years, the Church of the last days will outshine even the glory recorded in the Acts of the Apostles!

After our great, albeit brief, shining, preaching throughout the world will cease. Then shall be fulfilled the prophecy, “For the stars of heaven and the constellations thereof shall not give their light: the sun shall be darkened in his going forth, and the moon shall not cause her light to shine.” (Isa. 13:10; Joel 2:10,3:15; Acts 2:20-21)

So shall the Scripture be fulfilled, “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.’ ” That darkest of nights, which shall follow the brightness of the latter Church, shall overtake the earth even like the plague of darkness with which the Lord smote the Egyptians. It is during this time that The Beast shall reign in all of his wickedness and fury, and shall “wear out the saints of the Most High.” (Daniel chaps. 7 & 8; Rev. chaps. 13 &17)

When The Beast shall have finished his work, at last, as prophesied by Daniel, one final kingdom shall arise which shall never be destroyed, for God shall establish a nation, and shall give unto them the kingdom, for they have brought forth its fruits! “And the kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand for ever.” (Dan. 2:44) Hallelujah!

Therefore, take heed unto prophecy, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts! (2 Peter 1:19)

And the evening and the morn­ing were the fourth day.