THE SEVEN MILLENNIAL DAYS OF HUMAN HISTORY
The Second Millennial Day
Whenever we see a big, colorful rainbow in the sky, after a thundershower has ceased and the sunshine has reappeared, we are reminded of a promise -- an everlasting covenant -- which God made with Noah and his descendants after the great flood, which occurred on the Second Millennial Day:
"Thus I establish My covenant with you: Never again shall all flesh be cut off by the waters of the flood; never again shall there be a flood to destroy the earth. . . .
"I set My rainbow in the cloud, and it shall be for the sign of the covenant between Me and the earth. . . . and I will look on it to remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is on the earth."
The Second Day -- Waters
The lifetime of Noah lasted nine hundred fifty years (Genesis 9:29) and spanned the second millennium of human history. The story of Noah and the great flood reflects the second day of creation when God divided the waters of the earth from the waters of the sky:
"Then God said, 'Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters.' Thus God made the firmament, and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament; and it was so. And God called the firmament Heaven. . . ."
On the second day of creation the face of the earth was covered with water, and clouds filled the sky above. This was exactly like the scene viewed by Noah when he first opened the window of the ark, before the flood waters began to subside.
The Great Flood
The flood narrative is found in chapters six through nine of Genesis:
"Then the Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually."
There was every form of wickedness, violence and immorality before the flood. God was grieved in His heart, sorry He had created man. He determined to destroy the civilization that then existed:
"And God said unto Noah, 'The end of all flesh has come before Me, for the earth is filled with violence. . . . And behold, I Myself am bringing floodwaters on the earth, to destroy from under heaven all flesh in which is the breath of life; everything that is on the earth shall die. But I will establish My covenant with you, and you shall go into the ark -- you, your sons, your wife, and your sons' wives with you."
(Genesis 6:13, 17-18)
God called Noah and his family into the ark (7:1-9). The flood began seven days later. It rained forty days and forty nights upon the earth (7:10-17). The waters prevailed one hundred fifty days (7:18-24) and covered the highest mountains. Then the waters decreased (8:1-12), the earth dried (8:13-14) and Noah's family got off the ark, after spending over one full year on board.
Thus began our present civilization on earth!
"This Present Evil Age"
The next few chapters of Genesis describe how evil appeared again on earth after the flood, during the very lifetime of Noah. Noah placed a curse on the descendants of his son, Ham (9:18-27), because of their mounting wickedness ("a little leaven leavens the whole lump" -- see I Corinthians 5:6; Leviticus 18). God confused the languages of the nations at the tower of Babel because of the mounting rebellion of Ham's descendants, in order to hinder the rapid increase of wickedness (11:1-9). Evil continued to spread throughout the world, as it had done before the flood. Sodom and Gomorrah were the first cities to become totally wicked after the flood (Genesis 13:13; 18:22-33), so God destroyed them by fire (Genesis 19:23-29) as a sign of what He would do at the end of "this present evil age" (Galatians 1:4) when evil will have spread to its fullest extent (II Peter 2:6-9; 3:3-12; Jude 7; Matthew 13:40; Daniel 8:23; Genesis 15:16).
Jesus gave the parable of the wheat and tares to illustrate God's perspective on the world today: The earth is like a field in which good seed (Noah and his family) was planted. An enemy (the devil) came with stealth and mingled tares among the wheat. God is presently allowing both the good seed and the bad to grow together until the harvest (end of this age), when the tares will be burned and the wheat saved (Matthew 13:24-30, 36-43; Revelation 14:14-20).
The Bible speaks of three "worlds," or ages of human history: The first is "the world that then existed" before the flood (II Peter 3:6). The second is "this present evil age" in which we live today (Galatians 1:4). The third is "the world to come" which will begin after Christ's second coming and last forever (Hebrews 2:5; Luke 18:30; Daniel 2:44; 7:14; Ezekiel 37:25; Joel 3:20; Luke 1:33: Revelation 11:15).
God promised that He would never destroy the world again by the waters of a flood. He will, however, destroy all of the evil on earth by fire at the end of this present evil age (Matthew 13:40-42). The Seventh Millennial Day will be holy time, like the weekly Sabbath (Hebrews 2:5; 4:4). As the world was once "baptized by water" in the days of Noah (I Peter 3:20-21), the cleansing of the world by fire is comparable to a "second death" (Isaiah 66:15-16, 24; Malachi 4:1; Matthew 3:12; 13:30, 39-42, 49-50; I Thessalonians 5:2-3; II Peter 3:10-12; Revelation 2:11; 14:10; 19:20). The Days of Trumpets and Atonement picture the climactic world events which will occur at the end of this age (as outlined in the book of Revelation), and the historical transition leading directly to the world to come.
Let us forsake the sins of this present evil age (Isaiah 54:9; 55:3, 6-9; Revelation 18:4) and prepare ourselves for the righteous new world which Christ shall establish at His second coming, after the fall of "Babylon" (II Peter 3:1-13; Isaiah 65:17-25; Daniel 2:44; Acts 3:19-21; Revelation 18-20). Let us follow the example of Noah who obeyed God faithfully upon the Second Millennial Day (Hebrews 11:7).
© Copyright 1974, 1993, 2013 Matthew Kalliman