The World Tomorrow

Great Tribulation in Jeremiah 51

by Herbert W Armstrong


We can know the world tomorrow. We can know what is going to happen because God alone knows. No man knows, no man can tell anything about the future. But God and God alone, that's a proof of God, knows what is going to happen and He has revealed it. And a third of your Bible, approximately, is prophecy. And about ninety percent of that applies to the present time in which you live and the events that is going to happen in the next few years in your very lifetime.

Now, we have been looking forward into the things that are going to happen. We've gone on past the next things that are to occur, the things that are occurring right now that are prophesied. And the next thing to occur, and what is going to happen to the United States and the Great Tribulation that is coming. And the fact that God's people - and we are God's people, and God's people Israel are to be in a condition of slavery and captivity at the second coming of Christ. And just prior to that time, in the time known as 'The Day of the Lord' - the time when God is going to supernaturally intervene - we've been seeing that He is going to send Communist Russia to destroy that power which is now rising up, but which we seem too stupid or too dumb to see, in this world, in which we're actually helping to create the Frankenstein that is coming against us.

A union of ten dictatorships in Europe and in the territory of the old Roman Empire. There is going to be a resurrection of that old Roman Empire. Not very many people believe it. Because people have gotten completely beyond really believing that the Bible means what it says. Now, God is going to punish because the ways we have been going, as I have been showing you recently in these recent broadcasts, have brought nothing but heartaches and headaches and fears and worries and empty lives, and suffering, untold suffering to our people. God is going to punish. You're going to have to live and see it and you're going to have to know that God was speaking when He said this thing is coming.

Even those that profess to understand the Bible prophecies don't believe it because they don't understand. And one reason is because they don't have the key to understanding of all biblical prophecy. And that key is the knowledge of the United States and the British Commonwealth and where we are mentioned in biblical prophecy. Once again, you'd better write and get that booklet of ours, if you haven't already written, there is no charge. The booklet is 'The United States in Prophecy.' It's the very foundation, you might say it's the primer, it the ABC, it's the kindergarten, the beginning, you might say, of understanding prophecy because you're ignorant of prophecy unless you understand it.

Babylon in Bible Prophecies (Play from 3:11)

Well, now we've been in the fiftieth and fifty-first chapters of Jeremiah. Looking into the future, a number of other world events, world shaking events are going to happen prior to this. But we are getting on over, just prior to the second coming of Christ, and when Communist Russia is going to be rolling over this revived Roman Empire, that is called by the symbolic name, Babylon in the Bible prophecies. As the daughter of the ancient Babylon, of 600 years before Christ, it's the daughter, and it's spoken in the feminine gender always. Because there is going to be a union of church and state and the church is going to sit on the top of the heap. And so, here we find coming to verse thirty four, that's where we were. We've seen what is going to happen;

"...Babylon's soldiers [are going to] cease to fight, they stay inside their forts; their strength is gone from them, they are weak as women." (Jeremiah 51:30 Moffatt)

And so on, and we were reading that in the preceding program, in the thirtieth verse and here in the thirty-third verse, Jeremiah 51;

"For this is the sentence of the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: Babylon to be trampled like a threshing-floor, then trampled like the grain upon the floor!" (Jeremiah 51:33 Moffatt)

And I think that is exactly where we ended in the preceding program. And now continuing with verse 34;

"Nebuchadnezzar [the] king of Babylon has been devouring us; he set us down like an empty cup..." (Jeremiah 51:34 Moffatt)

Now, this is picturing Israel speaking here. Israel speaking of how this king of Babylon, and of course here it goes back here to the Nebuchadnezzar of 600 years before Christ. As it has a number of times, using what happened to the Jewish people back there, as the prefigure, as the type and the prediction of what is going to happen to us now. It was merely the foreshadowing event. There is type and antitype. There is a duality principle in the prophecies of God.

Literally, however, it is speaking of our time now and I've shown you so many places and it's the time of the Great Exodus under Christ back to Palestine, an Exodus so great that they will never remember the Exodus out of Egypt by, or under the hand of Moses. And this will be at the time when Christ leads Israel and Judah back to Palestine, as we read back here in chapter fifty and verse thirty four;

"...that the world may live at peace." (Jeremiah 50:34 Moffatt)

As it will after the second coming of Christ. It is the time when they will look for the sins of Israel and Judah and they'll find none, because the Deliverer shall have come to Zion, and have turned away ungodliness from Israel and from Judah. And God is going to make a New Covenant with His people. And our people are to be converted and begotten of the very spirit of God and made His own people. They are going to know that He is the Eternal. So, here they are pictured as saying;

""Nebuchadnezzar [the] king of Babylon has been devouring us; he set us down like an empty cup, he swallowed us [up] like a monster, he gorged himself with our delights, and then he threw us aside. My torn flesh be avenged on Babylon [that was Israel's cry]!" let those who dwell in Sion cry; "My blood be avenged on the Chaldeans!" let Jerusalem cry. And here is the Eternal's answer; "I will take your part [says the Eternal God] ...I will avenge you, I will dry up her lake and drain her springs. Babylon shall lie in ruins, a mere haunt of jackals, a horror and a scorn, where no man lives."" (Jeremiah 51:34-37 Moffatt)

'I will dry up her lake' - is that referring to the Mediterranean? Does that mean that after the second coming of Christ and through the Millennium that the Mediterranean Sea will be solid land? And people will dwell there? Babylon shall lie in ruins, a mere haunt of the jackals, a horror and a scorn, where no man lives. My friends, you're going to see that happen and nobody's going to live in the territory of this coming-to-be resurrected Roman Empire, for a thousand years to come afterwards. Now, let's go back here just a minute. Israel has cried here;

"My torn flesh be avenged on Babylon!" [and then] let those who dwell in Sion cry [here are the saints, the people in the Church now, let them cry]. "My blood be avenged on the Chaldeans!" let Jerusalem cry." (Jeremiah 51:35 Moffatt)

'Let my blood be avenged on these Chaldeans'. Now, my friends, does that remind you of anything if you know your Bible. And if you've been reading it. Over here in the sixth chapter, of the book of Revelation, where we come to the Great Tribulation. The Great Tribulation is pictured here in the sixth chapter, under the fifth seal, and beginning with verse 9, Revelation 6. The first four were the four horseman of the apocalypse. First was the false preachers, the false Christs and the false preachers preaching a false Christ and the second seal then was the red horse that is war. And the third seal the black horse that was famine. And the fourth seal, or the forth horseman was pestilence, the pale horse. And now, the world wars have already started, and the next thing to happen at the very beginning, and approximately at the same time as World War III - or the third phase of the world war when it comes - will be the famine and the pestilences. After that comes the Great Tribulation. In, and as a part of World War III, as a matter of fact. World War III is bringing that Great Tribulation.

Time of Jacob's Trouble (Play from 9:12)

And I've been reading to you, it's the time of Jacob's trouble, and Jacob means our people. And it's a national time of trouble on our people, and Christ is going to deliver us out of it as we've been seeing. And it is this modern Babylon, the daughter of the ancient Babylon that is going to put the yoke on our neck, that Christ will break at His second coming. Now, here are the saints, pictured in verse 9;

"And when he had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain [that's already happened now] for the word of God, and for the testimony [that] they held:" (Revelation 6:9)

Here are the martyrs of Jesus, here are the ones that had been put to death in past years, by this same symbolic Babylon. Because, we read over here in Revelation 17, where it describes this Babylon and the name is called;

"...MYSTERY BABYLON THE GREAT [in verse five of Revelation seventeen and verse six says]...I saw the woman [it's the daughter of the ancient Babylon - this is a women] I saw the women drunken with the blood of the saints, and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus..." (Revelation 17:5-6)

She had them put to death but she didn't kill them herself. No, the military, the government put them to death. Now then, here we find the souls of them that were slain way back there;

"...for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held [the martyrs]: And they cried with a loud voice, saying [just like Abel's blood cried to God from the ground, and God spoke to Cain way back there in the time of Adam and Eve and Cain and Abel] and they cried with a loud voice, saying, How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth?" (Revelation 6:9-10)

Now, they knew that vengeance is God's. God says; "Vengeance is mine...saith the Eternal." (Romans 12:19)

They knew that these judgments are coming on this Babylon. They had read this book of Jeremiah, they knew what was in the book of Jeremiah. And much of that is repeated here in the seventeenth and eighteenth chapters of Revelation, the fiftieth and fifty-first chapters of Jeremiah, the forty-seventh and forty-eight chapters of Isaiah. And here we find in Revelation 18;

"Therefore shall her plagues [speaking of Babylon] come in one day, death, and mourning...famine...she shall be utterly burned with fire: for strong is the Lord God who judgeth her. And the kings of the earth, who have committed fornication [with her] and lived deliciously with her [she has committed fornication with them, they]. shall bewail her and lament for her, when they see the smoke of her burning, Standing afar off for the fear of her torment, saying, Alas, alas, that great city Babylon, that mighty city! for in one hour is thy judgment come." (Revelation 18:8-10)

And it's the judgments of God on her. Now, vengeance is God's and the last plagues, my friends, the seven last plagues are coming at the very time of the second coming of Christ. Because, they are to be poured out in the presence of the Lamb of God when He comes as the King of kings, at the second coming of Christ, and the presence of all the holy angels. And you read in Matthew 25 that the holy angels come to earth from heaven at the second coming of Christ. There you read, Matthew 25:31, that; "When the Son of man shall come in [all] his [power and His great] glory, and all the holy angels with him, but then shall he sit on the throne of his glory:" (Matthew 25:31) And all nations will be before Him. So the angels are then coming at that time.

Well, now they knew that these judgments of God are to be poured out at the time of the second coming of Christ. And it was the time of the Day of the Lord and these last plagues, the last judgments, on this modern maiden Babylon - this daughter of the ancient Babylon of old, 600 years before Christ - and so they asked;

"...How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth?" (Revelation 6:10)

Doesn't that remind you of the way David cries out, as you read in so many of the Psalms? David had asked God to do something and God didn't do it right away. God didn't answer his prayer right away, and so he said, 'Oh, how long, Oh Lord, Holy and true, how long before you're going to answer me? How long before you are going to deliver me from my enemies?' It seemed to David that God would never do it. You know, you read in James in the New Testament, that "...the trial of your faith, the testing of your faith is given to work patience." (James 1:3 paraphrased)

And we need to develop a lot of patience. God doesn't always answer our prayers just the minute that we ask Him. We're inclined, when we pray to God, like you hear so many do, say, 'Right now, Lord, right now I want you to jump when I crack the whip, Lord. I want you to do it when I tell you to. Do it right now!' You know, God isn't going to answer that way. God has not told you when He's going to do it. He has made you thousands of promises of things He'll do, providing you conform to the terms and conditions that He lays down in His Word - and God will do it. And God wants you to come to Him and bring your troubles to Him and ask Him for the help that He has promised to give you in the thousands of promises. So many, many things that we need so direly in our everyday life that God has promised to give us. He will answer - the day of miracles is not past. It's only past for scoffers and skeptics and unbelievers. And you know, God performs these miracles nearly always in such a way they aren't going to convince any scoffer or any skeptic.

You know, God does not give miracles as the proof of the divinity of Christ or the reality of God. So many people think that the only purpose of the miracles of Christ was to prove His Messiahship and to prove that He was the Christ. You know He gave one sign - which means a miracle - to prove He was Christ and only one. Why the miracles He did were not given in proof of His divinity, because the scoffers and skeptics won't accept those miracles. They were done nineteen hundred years ago. They are recorded in your Bible but if you don't believe the Bible, you don't know whether they happened or not. The only way I know whether the miracles of Christ happened, whether He walked on the water, whether He healed the sick, restored the dead, whether He turned the water into wine, and whether He stilled the storm, whether He really did those things; the only way I know and the only way you can know is, if you really believe that the Bible is true when it says so.

The Only Sign Christ Gave (Play from 15:54)

Now, you've got to find another proof that the Bible is true, rather than miracles. You've got to find some other proof that Jesus was the Messiah, and He gave just one proof. And that was that He'd be three days and three nights in His grave and do you know that nearly every professing Christian in this world denies that one proof, that God gave - or that Christ gave - that He is the Messiah that was prophesied to come. That He would be three days and three nights in His grave. Well, if you doubt that and if you don't understand how He could be three days and three nights in His grave between Friday sunset and Easter Sunday morning, you'd better write in for our booklet on, 'The Resurrection' and that'll straighten it out. You have to do a little second grade arithmetic, and it's just that simple. A little child can understand it. Yes, God has hidden these things from the wise and prudent and revealed them unto babes. So, if you are a babe at heart, you can understand. And if don't understand the one sole proof that Jesus gave and how He was in the grave three days and three nights, you'd better read this booklet on, 'The Resurrection.' It's amazing, because He was really not crucified on Friday at all and He did not rise from the dead on Easter Sunday at all. It's really quite shocking. But it's all factual and it's all carefully documented and it's according to your Bible, you'll find it there. You write and get the booklet, it'll show you things and where to look and find things in your own Bible that are going to astound you, that you didn't know were there. That is, I'm assuming you haven't already understood it. As I know that many of you have, of course.

Well now, here are these people;

"How long, O Lord, holy and true [these martyrs], dost thou not judge and avenge our blood... [like David cried, 'How long before it'll happen?']? And white robes were given unto every one of them; and it was said unto them, that they should rest yet a little season... (Revelation 6:10-11)

Where are they resting? Why, in their graves, and "...the hour is coming, in which all that are in [their] graves [that's where they are, shall come forth and] shall hear His voice, and...come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life..." (John 5:28-29)

So it's speaking only of those who have done good, and come forth in the resurrection of life here. And it was told that they had to wait a while, until something else happened. Now, what else is going to happen?

"...until their fellow servants also and their brethren, that should be killed [yet to happen] as they were, should be fulfilled." (Revelation 6:11)

Now the time setting of this book of Revelation is our time now. And it's just in the future, it's coming, just ahead of us. Well, now there they are pictured as crying out back here in Jeremiah fifty one where we were. Here it is once again, Israel crying out;

"...My torn flesh be avenged on Babylon [but Israel expecting God to do it, and then]!...those who dwell in Sion [in other words, the saints are crying. Let the saints or those in Zion] cry; "My blood be avenged on the Chaldeans!" [because God is going to take this vengeance, it is the plagues, of the last plagues, that will come. Some of them just prior to the second coming of Christ and the seven last plagues at the time of the coming of Christ] let Jerusalem cry. And here is the Eternal's answer [here is what God's says, or the Eternal, this is Christ's answer]: "I will take your part I will avenge you, I will dry up her lake [Babylon's lake] and drain her springs. Babylon shall lie in ruins... (Jeremiah 51:35-37 Moffatt)

Now, with her springs drained and all the water gone, my friends, there'll be no rain, or there would still be springs and lakes and rivers and water. It means that, that portion of Europe that is here included, and I do not feel it includes all of Europe. I don't believe it includes northwestern Europe at all, but the portion of Europe that will go together in this thing. And I'm not going to try to name specific nations or set boundary lines, but that portion of Europe, it is here prophesied and it's in your Bible. You may not have the same translation that I'm reading, but it's in your Bible. And they're going to have drought and they're going to have it for a thousand years and no man is going to live there.

"Babylon shall lie in ruins a mere haunt of jackals, a horror and a scorn where no man lives" [it's going to happen, as certainly as you're grabbing a breath of air, as certainly as the sun rises and sets]. The Babylonians all roar like lions, growling like lion-cubs over their prey? I [that is what God questions, in other words He says, 'They do that, do they?' Then God says] I will feast them in my fury..." (Jeremiah 51:37-39 Moffatt)

Now the fury, the Day of the Lord, the day of His anger, the day of His fury is the day of these last plagues. The Day of the Lord, it's the time that comes after the Tribulation. Because you read in Matthew 24:29, where it speaks of the Great Tribulation and the twenty-first and twenty-second verses, in verse 29 it says;

"Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be [dark] and the moon... [be, well like blood, it won't give out the light that it usually does] and the stars [will] fall from heaven..." (Matthew 24:29)

Now back in Joel 2:31, you read that, that is going to happen; "...before the great and terrrible day of the LORD come." (Joel 2:31)

So, the terrible Day of the Lord comes after these heavenly signs, which in turn come after the Great Tribulation.

The Wrath of God (Play from 21:27)

So, this is speaking of the wrath of God, the wrath of God, the fury of God, the Day of the Lord, the plagues, the vengeance that God is going to take on this evil power that is now rising up in Europe. And that we're actually aiding and abetting and helping to rise up. Oh God open our eyes here in the United States to see what we're doing.

Now God answers, when He says there, they're roaring like lions, are they, these people? Yes, they're going to do a lot of roaring too, and you're going to be dumbfounded when you see it coming up in the next few years, as you certainly will. God says; "I will feast them in my fury, make them drunk and stupefied [until] they sleep the sleep that knows no waking." (Jeremiah 51:39 Moffatt)

In other words, that's eternal death, that's eternal punishment and; "...the wages of sin is death..." (Romans 6:23). But it is the second death from which there will be no resurrection. He calls it here a sleep that knows no waking but it's eternal death. That is exactly what He's speaking about.

"I will drive them to the shambles, like sheep, like rams and goats [the shambles is a meat market]. What a downfall for Babylon! The Splendour of the world surprised..." (Jeremiah 51:40-41 Moffatt)

Ancient Babylon was the splendor of the world. And I tell you this thing when it comes up again, my friends, it's only going to last a very, very short time. It's already being plotted and planned underground and undercover. It's coming up in Europe, my friends, and it's going to be a thing that will have carnal and material and national glory. And they're going to have great splendor. But all that splendor, and all that glory is going to be dashed down and quickly, because Christ is coming to do it.

"What horror in the world at Babylon's fate! A sea has burst on Babylon, she sinks below the roaring tides of war {1}; her towns lie desolate [or her cities], unpeopled, waterless, a waste where no man lives [you see drought, absolute desert it will become], none passes through. And I will punish Bel in Babylon, forcing him to disgorge his plunder; prisoners shall stream from him no more, for Babylon's walls are down [and then He says]. Come out of her my people..." (Jeremiah 51:41-45 Moffatt)

This whole Babylon. Actually, my friends, it's a way of life, it's a type of civilization, it includes the military idea, it includes the political idea. Of course we've got different political ideas in the United States, but yet the principle is the same, my friends, it certainly is not the government of God. And what we behold on the earth is governments of man, by man, for man and the ideas of man, instead of the government of God. And the gospel that Jesus brought was the government of God over mankind! God is the supreme ruler. But we try to rule ourselves, and at least we think we have very altruistic feelings towards other nations, and generally we do. Although we are at one another's throats among ourselves here in the United States. Trying to beat one another in every deal we can, get the best of everything and make all the profit we can. And there's more crime in our country than any nation on earth. Just get the statistics, the government will furnish them for you, you'll find them in some of the almanac's and you'll be pretty much surprised at what you find.

Well now, we are in the ways of Babylon, my friends. We are in the ways of society that God condemns as Babylon. And God says; "Come out of her, my people, save your lives every man of you, from the Eternal's burning wrath." (Jeremiah 51:45 Moffatt)

That certainly is the Day of the Lord! Now, let's go right back here again to Revelation 18, where that is quoted word for word, and is speaking of this modern Babylon that is rising up that is going to fight Christ at the second coming of Christ, will be ended at, and by the second coming of Christ. And here it is in verse 4;

"...I heard [a] voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people [it is speaking about Babylon, we find Babylon mentioned in verse 2, that's what it is speaking about all the way through here. Come out of her, my people], that ye be not partakers of her sins, ...that [you] receive not of her plagues. (Revelation 18:4)

My friends, you are going to receive these very plagues of God, if you do not come out of the ways of Babylon. And here it is back here in Jeremiah 51:45; "Come out of her, my people, save your lives, every man of you, from the Eternal's burning wrath." (Jeremiah 51:45 Moffatt)

That is the plagues of God that He's going to send and that you not be a participant in those plagues when they come. Listen, God is promising you protection. God is promising you that no plague will come nigh to your dwelling if you surrender your life to God. If you seek Christ with all your heart and all your mind. If you're obedient to God. If you are living by every word of God. You're studying the Bible, not for argument, not for just interest, but to show yourself approved unto God. To be corrected and reproved by it, instructed in the ways of righteousness by it. To live by every word of God. Then, my friends, God promises you absolute and utter protection from all of the things to come.

My friends, we're living in the ways of Babylon today. It's the way of society that just grips this whole American people of ours by the throat. It's the way we think is good, it's the way of this world, and it's the way of the whole world, the whole western world today. It's the way that God calls Babylon and it's confusion and an abomination to God. And it's time we came out of it. It engulfs our whole social fabric, political, economical, religious - everything, we are in that kind of a system. God help us to wake up, I know we think this world is a pretty nice world. It's a pretty good world, we love this world. My friends, if we love the world, the love of God is not in us (I John 2:15) and we've got to wake up. Well, that's about as far as we have time to go. I tell you, my friends, these are warnings of God. And these are prophecies for this very hour for our generation, for our people. Jeremiah didn't write that for the Jews, way back there. Jeremiah was writing this, as a matter of fact, this part of Jeremiah was written after most of the captivity. Of course, it happened at different stages and over different years. It's for our people and it's for now and it's God's message to you

{1} Footnote Mr Armstrong says 'water' but the Bible says 'war'.