The Necessity of Proclaiming God’s Word in Biblical Times By Jonathan C. Brentner Why do…
The Mighty Angels of Daniel 12: Suffering in Light of Prophetic Hope
By Nathan Jones
The Guardian Angel
Nathan Jones: Let’s talk about guardian angels, specifically angels such as the Archangel Michael whom God has sent to protect His chosen people.
Behind world events a spiritual war is raging. An invisible spiritual element, much like the wind, can clearly still be felt.
During the coming 7-year Tribulation, Satan is allowed by God to finally conquer the world and set himself up as the global ruler through his puppet, the Antichrist. All Satan has ever wanted was for God’s creation to worship him and disregard God. His demonic angels still busily work to undermine God’s plans. They work against Israel, causing the Jewish people to undergo tremendous suffering. Two-thirds of the Jewish people are prophesied to be killed by the Antichrist during the Tribulation. And, Revelation 6 predicts that more than half of the world population will die in just 3.5 years into the Tribulation.
During that horrific time, God’s angels appear to have their backs to the wall as they are being beaten so badly by the Antichrist. But, Satan’s victories are thankfully short-lived. Interestingly, God has a purpose for allowing Satan to thrive for a time. God wants rebellious mankind to be hanging in such horror that they wake up and realize their only hope is Jesus Christ. Mankind suffers until we surrender, and must do so before Jesus Christ returns.
Vic Batista: Revelation 12:1-3 explains that future time of trouble when the world will suffer a time so terrible it’s actually labeled the worst in human history. The Tribulation stands apart as a separate time from the regular daily troubles we face each and every day in this fallen world. The Tribulation equals the wrath of God.
“At that time Michael shall stand up, the great prince who stands watch over the sons of your people; and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation, even to that time. And at that time your people shall be delivered, everyone who is found written in the book. And many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, some to shame and everlasting contempt. Those who are wise shall shine like the brightness of the firmament, and those who turn many to righteousness, like the stars forever and ever.”
Nathan Jones: Revelation 12:1 echoes back to Jeremiah 30:7 when calling the Tribulation the “time of Jacob’s trouble.” From the Prophet Daniel’s perspective, he likely couldn’t imagine yet another time of trouble. A key to understanding Daniel’s possible perspective, who would have prophesied just after Jeremiah did while Judah fell, would have been able to look back at Jeremiah’s prophecies and wonder if his predecessor was talking about that great time of sorrow for the Jewish people as the time of Jewish exile in Babylon, the time Daniel in which was then living. Daniel lived through the time period when the Jewish people had been exiled out of Israel by the Babylonians. He likely then couldn’t possibly imagine a worse time for his people.
The Jewish exile was prophesied by Moses back in Deuteronomy 28-30. Moses warned the children of Israel that should they continuously and repeatedly reject God, they would be dragged into exile throughout the world. Sure enough, the Jewish people rebelled for centuries, and so were finally exiled to Babylon. God kept the Jews in exile for 70 years, but then returned a remnant back to Jerusalem where they live for a few hundred more years, though almost always under a Gentile power’s reign. Then again, the Jews rejected the Messiah, and so in 70 AD they were once again exiled throughout the world for their disbelief.
Imagine how hard life would have been for Daniel living in exile in a foreign country since his teen years. Daniel witnessed his beloved city of Jerusalem burned to the ground and his family killed by Babylonian forces. Daniel was forced to live in a different culture and adopt a different language and work around other leaders who hated his guts. One new pagan king after another kept coming and going, and the Babylonians even fell to the Medo-Persian Empire. The Jewish people felt they’d reached their lowest point since being enslaved in Egypt. And here Daniel is being told there’s going to be an even worse period of time for his people than the one he was living in.
Vic Batista: Shocked would be the word Daniel must have felt. In talking with Jewish people today about Bible prophecy and the Tribulation that’s coming, and compare the Tribulation to the horrible time the Jews suffered under Hitler, to them it’s rather unbelievable that there could be a worse time of suffering. Hitler murdered six million Jews, but the Antichrist will murder eight million Jews, by today’s population statistics.
Suffering in Light of Prophetic Hope
Nathan Jones: This scenario provides us with a good reminder that no matter how difficult the challenges we face in life, things could become really worse than they are. We should then thank the Lord for His mercies. Even in your troubles and sorrows, thank the Lord and count your blessings, for life really could be worse.
When reading in the Bible about the Tribulation, this time of trouble that Daniel 12:1 prophesies will come upon the world, we specifically are talking about 21 judgments from God which will befall this world. By the end of the seven years, earth’s ecology will have been devastated, much of the planet destroyed, and incredibly most of the world’s population will have been killed by the many plagues and diseases, wars, wild beasts, fires that are possibly nuclear in origin, and many other judgments of God’s wrath. Revelation 6 prophesies seemingly endless wars as massive as a World War 3 and World War 4. Unleashed demons swarm across the planet slaughtering everybody in their paths who don’t have the seal of God upon their forehead. Truly, the Tribulation stands apart as the worse time period in all of human history. When we look at life from that perspective, well we should realize that we’ve got it pretty good right now.
Vic Batista: What we love about the Bible is that there’s always hope, even if it can be a little back-handed. Sometimes we think we are going through a tough time, but then when you read from the Scriptures about those who’ve suffered before and will after us, we realize that life isn’t as really bad off as we think. That’s not to disparage the tough times were living in, but compared to the horrors the world will face prophesied about the future, that sure puts our trials into perspective.
Nathan Jones: The Lord is hardly absent. He always provides help for His children. For instance, Revelation 12:1 reveals that Michael the Archangel serves as the great protector for the nation of Israel. And, the Lord provides angelic protectors over Christians as well. We should always turn to and pray to the Lord when we are in trouble and in distress, in all our problems, and call the Lord for help. And He promises that He will help. “For He Himself has said, ‘I will never leave you nor forsake you’” (Heb. 13:5). Jesus will deliver you through your trials safely into His arms.
Knowing the dire future that awaits, maybe that isn’t the kind of hope we are longing for at the moment, but a right perspective is the kind of help we truly need. It’s the kind of help that makes us more dependent on God and less on ourselves, and that is the way life should be lived.
Vic Batista: Daniel 12:1 states this best, “…at that time your people shall be delivered.” In other words, God provides a promise there for anyone who is written in the Lamb’s Book of Life, we are His children, and God always provides for His children.
The first segment of this series on the mighty angels of Daniel began with a tragic back story. In the seventy-eighth segment, we’ll explore more of the horrors of the Tribulation in light of the hope for those written in the Lamb’s Book of Life.