In A.D. 31 Jesus said concerning the last days just before His second coming, “And there will be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and on the earth distress of nations, with perplexity [or without resources], the sea and the waves roaring; men’s hearts failing them from fear, and for the expectation of those things which are coming on the earth, for the powers of heaven will be shaken.” Luke 21:25, 26.
In 1904 Ellen White published this statement: “Transgression has almost reached its limit. Confusion fills the world, and a great terror is soon to come upon human beings. The end is very near. We who know the truth should be preparing for what is soon to break upon the world as an overwhelming surprise.” Testimonies, vol. 8, 28.
The twentieth century fulfilled the prediction about a great terror coming upon human beings. There were the communist revolts and revolutions starting shortly after 1900. World War I broke out and, twenty years later, World War II with a depression between. Between the late 1940’s until 1989 we experienced the rise of totalitarism that covered more than half the world. The number of people violently killed by the two world wars totaled around 80 million and more than 100 million have been violently killed by totalitarian revolutions.
But as frightening as the twentieth century was, the twenty-first century is starting out to be worse. Without going into the details of the global troubles in the natural world, the economic world, the religious world, and the military world, that you probably already know about, let us look at what God has counseled us in regard to the time in which we are living:
“Every hand should be outstretched to help the hand that is doing something for the Master. The time may come when the hands that have upheld the feeble hands of another may, in turn, be upheld by the hands to whom they ministered. God has so ordered matters that no man is absolutely independent of his fellowmen.” Testimonies to Ministers and Gospel Workers, 496.
“Faith is the clasping of the hand of Christ in every emergency.” Gospel Workers, 262.
“The hand of Christ can reach the veriest sinner, and bring him back from transgression to obedience; but no Christianity is so lofty that it can soar above the requirements of God’s holy law.” The Signs of the Times, March 31, 1890.
“God says to His people, ‘Press together, press together; that you may not be destroyed as were the inhabitants of Jerusalem.’ ” Ibid., October 31, 1900.
“We are to unify, but not on a platform of error.” Manuscript Releases, vol. 15, 259.