Visualizing the turmoil and strife which would beset the inhabitants of the earth when the age drew to its close, the prophets of the Lord described the violence of the times in terms of furious tempest and turbulent storm. The Prophet Ezekiel mentioned one identifying characteristic when he exclaimed: “It shall be the time of the heathen” (Ez. 30:3). The Prophet Joel addressed a message to the heathen in that day: “Let the heathen be wakened, and come up to the valley of Jehoshaphat: for there will I sit to judge all the heathen round about” (Joel 3:12).
The Psalmist asks the question: “Why do the heathen rage, and the people imagine a vain thing?” Then he declares: “The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the Lord and against his anointed” (Ps. 2:1-2). Contemplating the planned action of the Great Confederacy that would gather to oppose the Lord and His people, David prayed: “Keep not thou silence, O God: hold not thy peace, and be not still, 0 God. For lo, thine enemies make a tumult: and they that hate thee have lifted up the head. They have taken crafty counsel against thy people, and consulted against thy hidden ones” (Ps. 83:1-3).
The Psalmist called upon the Lord to use the instruments of chastisement – tempest and storm -which are in His hands: “O my God, make them like a wheel; as the stubble before the wind. As the fire burneth a wood, and as the flame setting the mountains on fire; So persecute them with thy tempest, and make them afraid with thy storm. Fill their faces with shame; that they may seek thy name, 0 Lord. Let them be confounded and troubled for ever; yea, let them be put to shame, and perish: that men may know that thou, whose name alone is JEHOVAH, art the most high over all the earth” (Ps. 83:13-18).
The Psalmist indicated no ordinary “act of God” in nature was called for; since this was to be His tempest and His storm! These are to be taken from among the “weapons of His indignation” when Isaiah’s prophecy is fulfilled: “For, behold, the Lord cometh out of his place to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity” (Isa. 26:21). In the day that the Lord moves in judgment against men and nations, there will be no place to hide from the Divine fury, for added to the weapons of tempest and storm, will be whirlwind, fire and sword: “For, behold, the Lord will come with fire, and with his chariots like a whirlwind, to render his anger with fury, and his rebuke with flames of fire. For by fire and by his sword will the Lord plead with all flesh: and the slain of the Lord shall be many” (Isa. 66:15-16).
This statement by Isaiah recalls the prophecy included in the Song of Moses: “If I whet my glittering sword, and mine hand take hold on judgment; I will render vengeance to mine enemies, and will reward them that hate me” (Deut. 32:41). The Lord knew His people would forsake Him and break His covenant. Therefore, He said, “My anger shall be kindled against them in that day, and I will forsake them … and many evils and troubles shall befall them” (Deut. 31:17).
The Prophet Micah foretold that the arrival of Divine judgment at the end would coincide with a time of total moral breakdown, when godlessness would be rampant and the worldly-minded would no longer be able to distinguish between righteousness and unrighteousness or tell bad from good. The prophet declared: “The godly has perished from the land, and there is none righteous among men. They all lie in wait for blood; each hunts his brother with a net. They solemnly swear that bad is good. The prince and the judge demand a bribe; and the great man expresses his desire; and so they pervert justice. The best of them are like a brier; the most upright of them are like a hedge. The day of their watchmen, their punishment, is come; soon shall be their havoc” (Micah 7:2-4, Smith & Goodspeed Trans.).
There is no doubt but that we are living in the day of the watchmen. However, as the message of the passing of the hours is proclaimed, coupled with the call to restore righteousness, there is no response from the majority. Knowing that this would be true, the prophecy was given through Micah (Micah 7:4): “The day of thy watchmen and thy visitation cometh.” In other words, the day of the watchmen would be the day of Divine visitation. They would be almost simultaneous.
The Lord proclaimed through Moses that He would be tempted to abandon His people to run the whole gamut of judgment “were it not that I feared the wrath of the enemy … lest they should say, Our high hand, and not the Lord, hath done all this” (Deut. 32:27, marginal rendering). With great yearning that His people would recognize the folly of their obstinate disobedience, the exclamation is made: “0 that they were wise, that they understood this, that they would consider their latter end!” (Deut. 32:29.)
However, the Lord God Almighty will not utterly forsake His people, who are today the Anglo-Saxon-Celtic peoples, in remembrance of His covenant, which He made with our forefathers when He met with them at the foot of Mount Sinai. Because He will act in our behalf for His own Holy Name’s sake, the historical ballad concludes on a ringing note of triumph (Deut. 32:43): “Rejoice, 0 ye nations, with his people: for he will avenge the blood of his servants, and will render vengeance to his adversaries, and will be merciful unto his land, and to his people.”