THE END OF DAYS
THERE IS NO QUESTION that the past 12 months have been among the most difficult in my six and a half decades living on planet earth, as has likewise been the case for billions of other people dealing with the Covid virus, especially those of us who are “senior citizens” and therefore more vulnerable to its potential ill effects. We all realize that the young have also suffered as well, although in different ways. Schools were shut down in many countries and economies everywhere reeled. Murders and other violent crimes shot up, along with suicides, drug, alcohol and spousal abuse, and the list goes on. However, as the saying goes, surrounding most dark clouds is a silver lining. While suffering from necessary isolation like so many others my age group and older (made more necessary in my case due to high blood pressure and other heart-related health issues), it has in some ways been the BEST year of my life. Having retired from most of my journalistic work several years ago, I’d been working from my home for several years before Covid struck, especially enjoying planting and cultivating my extensive vegetable, flower and berry gardens, which I could only do on a much smaller scale while living before 2015 in my compact two bedroom, one bath apartment in central Jerusalem! So I’ve had the welcome company of many of God’s creatures during the pandemic, including wild turkeys, bald eagles, deer, many types of birds, along with my neighbor’s dog and cat who come over for frequent visits and treats. I’ve also enjoyed watching hundreds of fishermen (and sometimes women) plying the shallow waters near my dock on the lake I live next to. Fishing has definitely been “the thing to do” in our area, keeping one “socially distanced” while out in the fresh air and sunshine! One brother and his wife live next door along the lake as well, along with several close friends, and we managed to safely get together quite often, especially during the warmer months.
STILL, LIKE SOME OF YOU, the thing I missed most was attending my weekly church service (which was actually suspended for several months since we met at a local high school, shut down due to the virus). Nevertheless, my less hectic schedule and relative isolation gave me the opportunity---which I gratefully took---of drawing closer to the God of the Universe, who also just happens to be the “lover of our souls” as well. So instead of suffering spiritual damage as a result of the pandemic, I actually grew much closer to God during the past unique 12 months. It also helps to have access to some inspiring preaching and teaching on TV and the internet. With so much media focus on sickness and death, one’s attention was anyway regularly drawn to the subject of human mortality and vulnerability, which tends to focus the mind on eternal issues. Although many of my family and friends had less time to seek the Lord’s Face, as they were suddenly forced to home-school their kids or other similar disruptions brought on by the Covid crisis, I was blessed to be in a position to spend much more “quiet time” with my King than I had managed before the virus altered all of our lives. So that was my silver lining, and I am most grateful for it.
BASED ON WHAT I BELIEVED the Holy Spirit had revealed to me in 2017, I told family and friends late last Spring that I suspected the virulent virus would take far more than the 60,000 American lives then being forecast by the University of Washington’s viral disease experts. Of course, one year later, it is nearing ten times that total, even if many of the deceased also suffered from other medical maladies. Tourism is still at a virtual standstill in most parts of the troubled globe, including the biblical Promised Land, and many other aspects of “normal life” before Covid have not yet returned. Indeed, given what I believe the Sovereign Lord was showing me for several years before the virus began its quick global mad march from China, I seriously doubt that pre-pandemic “normal life” will ever fully return.
I AM MORE CONVINCED every day that the viral plague is a form of divine judgment on our increasingly fallen world, where rampant abortions, sex trafficking, murders, lawlessness and many other death-focused things are exponentially exploding. America in particular has seen a dramatic surge of violence and rioting, culminating in the actual storming of the US Capitol building last January. Political divisions have never been deeper, apart from during the 1860’s Civil War. Major cities are in chaos as racial and economic tensions soar. Meanwhile the southern border has been blasted open by the new Biden-Harris administration, which has been busy promoting the LGBTQ agenda while spending huge bundles of money “borrowed” from future generations. In fact, many conservative pundits opine that Joe Biden is doing the bidding of the Bernie Sanders socialist wing of the Democratic Party, which also includes Vice President Kamala Harris, who many predict will become Commander in Chief probably sooner than later. Meanwhile the prospects of major military clashes between the US and its four main enemies--Russia, China, North Korea and Iran--have apparently substantially grown as the Democratic leadership reverts to its traditional “global human rights” emphasis, following the more isolationist Trump years.
WHILE THE US REPUBLICAN PARTY moved somewhat to the right over the past few decades, the Democratic party has leapt like a pole vaulter to the left. In fact the changes have been so profound that a new “civil war” is now being seriously talked about. This time racial divides would not be the only, or even the main issue behind the country’s bust up. I frankly do not see the ominous signs of internal disintegration, which actually go back several decades, disappearing anytime soon, or ever at all. While spiritual revival is always possible, the indications are not glowing that a major return to faith is actually on the way. All this to say, I believe that divine judgment continues to fall upon the world, but especially upon America. The Bible says the Everlasting Father is the One who “raises up” nations and kings, and also sometimes calls for their demise.
I AM AMONG THE MANY students of Bible prophecy who suspect that the United States will no longer be a global superpower when the apocalyptic “last days” unfold, as they seem to be on the verge of doing at present. Not a few speculate that since the 20th century’s most powerful nation is not mentioned, or even alluded to, among the list of players on the endtime world stage (which includes Russia, China, Turkey, Iran, Italy and other European powers, and many other countries---especially Israel), it may not even be in existence when the final curtains of this present age begin to fall. Given that it has been widely hailed as a “beacon of liberty and religious freedom, with justice for all” over the past few hundred years, its current state of rapid moral decline amid mushrooming social strife may indeed portend America’s demise, as is being predicted and celebrated by many of its enemies. To whom much is given, much is required, as ancient Israelis discovered when their God allowed the mighty Assyrian and Persian armies to ravage their holy city and land due to unremitting sin and moral corruption.
AS THE PROPHESIED END of this age draws ever closer, I am more confident every day that the Lord---the solid Rock of Ages---lives! I can’t imagine living my life in these turbulent times without the love and aid that the Messiah Yeshua showers on me from our shared Father in Heaven, via the Holy Spirit. Therefore I rest assured that all will be well in the end, even if the journey along the way gets pretty rough at times. As the Apostle Paul wrote, I am convinced that nothing can separate us from receiving the wonderful love of the Messiah, whether it be death itself, storms, famines, plagues, persecutions or war. And THAT is indeed Good News!
DAVID DOLAN is an author and journalist who lived and worked in Israel for over three decades, beginning in 1980.
HOLY WAR FOR THE PROMISED LAND (Broadman & Holman), his latest book, is an overview of the history of the Israel and of the bitter Arab-Israeli conflict that rages there, plus some autobiographical details about the author’s experiences living in the land since 1980. It especially examines the important role that militant Islam plays in the conflict.
ISRAEL IN CRISIS: WHAT LIES AHEAD? (Baker/Revell), which examines the political and biblical prospects for a regional attack upon Israel, settlement in the disputed territories, and related topics, is also available for purchase, along with an updated edition of his popular end-time novel, THE END OF DAYS (21st Century Press).
You may order these books at a special discount price by visiting his web site at www.ddolan.com, or by phoning toll free 888-890-6938 in North America, or by e mail at: firstname.lastname@example.org
DOLAN'S NEW DVD, "FOR ZION'S SAKE" is now available for purchase. Click the title under "BOOKSTORE" for more details.