Prophecies Concerning the Gentile Nations
Elder Oscar B. Mink
Now In Glory
“When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory:  And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats:  And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left.  Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:  For I was an hungered, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in:  Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me.  Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungered, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink?  When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee?  Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee?  And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.  Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels:  For I was an hungered, and ye gave me no meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink:  I was a stranger, and ye took me not in: naked, and ye clothed me not: sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not.  Then shall they also answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungered, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee?  Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me.  And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal” (Matthew 25:31-46).
Verse 31 establishes the time of the judgment of the nations. The nations of the earth will be judged by Christ at His second advent to earth. This judgment follows, or immediately succeeds, the battle of Armageddon, wherein Christ and His armies are the indisputable victors. It is the time when Christ shall set on the throne of “His glory.” He is now sitting as the intercessor for His people on the throne of His Father’s glory (Romans 8:34; I Timothy 2:5).
Verse 32 reveals that “all nations” of the earth shall be judged at this time. Every individual on earth will not at this time stand before the throne of Christ’s glory, but all people of the earth will be represented by their governmental heads of state, and their ruling bodies. This is a judgment of nations, and has to do primarily with the favor or ill favor Israel has received at their hands, and especially in the seven year tribulation period which has just ended. The judgment of all unsaved individuals post-dates the judgment of nations by one thousand years (Revelation 20:6-12). The purpose of this judgment is clearly stated. It is to divide the sheep nations from the goat nations.
Verse 33 discovers the sheep on the right hand of Christ which is the place of favor. The goat nations are seen standing on His left hand, the place of rejection (verse 41).
Verses 34-40, the sheep nations enter the millennial kingdom which was prepared for them from the foundation of the world. They are astonished by this great favor. Christ relates to them the ground of their reward was the kindness He received at their hands during the tribulation period. This puzzles them, and they ask, how could they have shown Him kindness in that they had not actually seen Him before this time. We have Christ’s answer in vs. 40, “And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.” The expression, “My brethren” is a reference to the kinsman of Christ according to the flesh, and Christ “was made of the seed of David according to the flesh.” It was of the “Israelites ... whom as concerning the flesh Christ came” (Romans 1:3; 9:4-5).
Christ said to Paul on the Dasmascus road, at the time of Paul’s conversion, “... Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou Me?” (Acts 9:4). The pronoun “Me” is emphatic. Paul was persecuting Christ. The question served to arouse curiosity in Saul, for he had not heretofore met Jesus, and he asks, “Who art thou Lord? And the Lord said, I am Jesus Whom thou persecutest ....” (Acts 9:5).The point is, Jesus was in heaven, already glorified at the time of Saul’s persecution, so the question is; “How is it then that Saul was persecuting Jesus?” We have the answer in Paul’s s own words, he says, “... I persecuted the church of God” (I Corinthians 15:9). To persecute the church is to persecute Christ. For the anti-Christ nations to persecute the faithful Jewish remnant which God has reserved unto Himself according to the election of grace is to persecute Christ. When we read of Christ that, “He came unto His own and His own received Him not” it is to be understood He came unto the nation of Israel collectively. He was not recognized by the nation of Israel as their long awaited for Messiah. And when we read in the immediate context, “But as many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the Sons of God, even to them that believe on His name” (John 1:11-12), it is to be understood that He came to some in Israel electively. These elect ones became the Sons of God experimentally, and spiritual brethren of the Lord. Not by their own will, but of God (John 1:13).
In verses 41-45 the verdict concerning the reprobate nations is given. In their depraved hearts they found no room for the persecuted Jews of the tribulation period, and the Judge- King hands down His ruling against them in these heart rending words, “... Depart from Me, ye cursed into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels.”
The last verse (46) is the benediction of this tribunal. It reads, “And these (the goat nations on His left hand) shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous (the sheep nations on His right hand) into life eternal.”
Matthew 25:31-46 vividly pictures the predicament of the nations of the earth at the conclusion of the seven year tribulation period. This tribulation will affect all nations, but it will peculiarly relate to Israel. Jeremiah prophesied of it, saying, “... That day is great, so that none is like it: it is even the time of Jacob’s trouble; but he shall be saved out of it” (Jeremiah 30:7). God is not through with Israel, nor shall He ever be. God speaking to Abraham, and of his seed, Israel, said, “I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee ... And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse them that curseth thee ...” (Genesis 12:2-3). We need to view the nations of the world regarding this promise of God to Abraham, and see what their current predicament is, for Israel is fast taking on the nature of “a burdensome stone for all people” (Zechariah 12:3).
THE UNITED STATES AND ISRAEL
The term “predicament” means, a condition or state, wherein difficulty abounds. The U. S. Government is ever in a constant state of perplexity, and this state is being compounded daily by new and trying situations. The U. S. continues to flex her arm, and throw punches all around the world’s political ring, but the muscle power is no longer in that once great arm. Korea, Cuba and Viet Nam all attest to the veracity of the above statement. So, the dilemmas continue to mount, and Washington’s inability to handle them becomes more and more pronounced. If we cultivate diplomatic relations with Red China, we offend our faithful ally, the Taiwan government. If we act favorable toward Israel, we offend the Arab block nations which are united in a common front of none recognition of Israel. And it appears from recent U. S. policy toward Israel that the oil of the Arabs is more important to us than the long and faithful friendship of Israel. The policy which the United States has been practicing for the last four or five years regarding Israel is a “Sideline Policy.” That is, let Israel go it alone. The vital question facing our beloved nation is not détente with Russia, and what concessions to make in placating Russia, but what to do about Jerusalem is our major problem. The United States when drawing up foreign policy needs to remember the ultimatum of the Almighty, wherein He said, “Bless Israel, and I will bless you, curse Israel, and I will curse you” (ibid.). The passiveness of the United States toward Israel is not tantamount to forgetting God, but goes a long way in that direction, and God levies a heavy tax on those nations that forget Him (Psalms 9:17). So, it behooves every Christian in America to pray for the United States regarding this matter, and to let their representatives in Washington know how they feel. God will not forget His covenant with Israel (Leviticus 26:42), and the United States needs to remember this covenant so as to stay Ichabod from over her national door.
PROPHECIES CONCERNING THE GENTILE NATIONS
They are to be awakened, “Let the heathen be awakened, and come up to the valley of Jehoshphat: for there will I sit to judge all the heathen round about” (Joel 3:12).
The Prophet Joel says, “Let the heathen be awakened.” So, we know they were asleep. Russia, half western and half eastern slept for centuries. One historian said of Russia, “They were content to vegetate in indolence and obscurity.” But Russia was destined to be widely awakened, and her apathy set aside. The first man to disturb Russia’s slumber was one of the most energetic rulers known to history: Peter the Great. Then Mr. Lenin came along with his philosophy of communism, and Russia shook off all desire to sleep. Russia is not only wide awake, but is the leading military nation of the world, and has an unrelenting ambition to cover the earth with the communistic ideology as waters cover the sea.
Communism is the antithesis of Bible Christianity, and the nations deceived thereby manifest their goat hood. Russia is under the curse of God for her Christ hating doctrine of communism, and her ill treatment of the Jews within her boundaries. Russia and her satellite states shall stand on the left hand of Christ at the judgment of nations spoken of in our text.
The blood of the Jewish remnant within Russia is not sufficient to satisfy her insatiable hatred of the Jew, and the Prophet Ezekiel speaks of Russia’s determination to destroy Israel, saying, “Thou shalt come from thy place out of the north parts (Moscow lies directly north of Jerusalem) and thou shalt come up against my people Israel ... And I will turn thee back and leave but the sixth part of thee” (Ezekiel 38:15-16; 39:2). Russia will grow weary with the bungling of her satellite states in the middle east and decide to go down and take care of Israel herself, but it would have been better for Russia had she never been awakened, then to have been awakened against Israel.
I am surprised, that the Free World was surprised when Ethiopia adopted communism, and allied herself with Russia. Over 2,500 years ago the Holy Spirit inspired Prophet Ezekiel said that Ethiopia would be one of Russia’s allies in the invasion of Palestine (Ezekiel 38:5). The United States over a long period of time gave Ethiopia millions of dollars in foreign aid. This waste of the taxpayers hard earned dollars could have been prevented had our Heads of government believed God rather than man.
IRAN OR OLD PERSIA
Modern Iran, which is ancient Persia, is supposed to be one of the strongest allies of the United States in the Middle East. Recently, the Shah of Iran made a State visit to Washington and Mr. Carter, and he was given the red carpet treatment. But alas it is true, like Ethiopia, when Iran can no longer get what it wants from the United States, she too will turn to Russia and communism. The free world will be shocked and bewildered at Iran’s change in policy, but again, this very event is foretold by the Prophet Ezekiel (Ezekiel 38:5). The best foreign policy guideline for the United States is Bible eschatology but unregenerate legislators would mock such a proposition. Ethiopia and Iran will stand on the left hand of Christ at the judgment of nations.
CHINA AND THE FAR EAST
We will now turn our prophetical periscope toward the Far East, “And the sixth angel poured out his vial upon the great river Euphrates; and the water thereof was dried up, that the way of the kings of the east might be prepared” (Revelation 16:12).
There are three major powers in the Far East: China, Japan and India. Of these three, we will deal mainly with China, for it is China that has of recent come awake.
The word “east” in Revelation 16:12 comes from a word which means “Sun Rising,” or more literally, “The land of the rising sun.” It is not by mere chance that Japan is known as the Kingdom of the Rising Sun. The major religion of the Japanese people is Shintoism and under the canopy of Shintoism reside a large number of deities ranging from the sun goddess, through their deified emperor, to national heroes, trees, rivers, guardian family spirits, etc.
The same is essentially true regarding India. India is known as the land of a thousand religions. The predominant contemporary thought pervading the minds of India’s intellectuals is communism. India, with her membership in the Atomic Club, and Japan with her great industrial machine will both stand on the left hand of Christ in the judgment of nations.
China was the Rip Van Winkle of the Far East. China slept for hundreds of years. China was content with her great walls, her old ways, and laborious people. But Joel’s prophecy (3:12) says, “Let the heathen be awakened.” Up until about 1840 China sent out no ambassadors, and received none. For a long time, Canton was the only port open on the entire China coast to foreign trade. China was in deep slumber. The U.S. took the lead in arousing China, and in 1844 sent Caleb Cushing as U.S. representative to China. Belgium, France, Holland and other nations soon had representatives in China. The sleepy giant was waking up, and coming out of her long night. Soon there were more than 40 ports open on the China coast to foreign trade. China was, for the most part of the intervening years, (1844-1946) a good friend of the United States. All along the devil has had his plan to sunder the United States - China relationship, and he executes his plan through the medium of one Mao-Se Tung. Through Mao, China becomes wide awake, stands up on her own two feet and tells the rest of the nations of the earth, “If you do not like it, you know what you can do about it.” This awakened and now belligerent China played a major role in the defeat of the United States in both Korea and Viet Nam.
Revelation 9:16 reveals that the anti-Christ armies who invade Palestine, and come to Armageddon shall be 200,000,000 million strong. These armies shall be from every God defying nation on earth. China’s communism is irrevocable, and it is certain that a major part of that infamous army which goes against Israel in the battle of Armageddon will be wearing the insignia of communist China. The evidence against China places her on the left hand of Christ in the judgment of nations, and China with her teeming millions will be consigned to the everlasting burnings. Judging from the life that they lived and died, Marx, Lenin, Engels, Stalin, Mao Se Tung, Jo En Li, and Ho Chi Minh, are already in hell, and will not stand in the judgment of nations, but the nations duped by them will be there, and will be sentenced to the same hell. The nations which constitute the revived Roman empire, which will be headed up by the ultimate human anti-Christ, will stand on the left hand of Christ in the judgment of nations. The communist leaders of Africa, South America, East Europe, and every other place will stand at the left hand of Christ in the judgment of nations.
I do not mean to imply there are no saved persons in these nations now. If there is, and I believe there are a great number, this number of saved people in these nations will, along with all other saints, be taken out of the world in the rapture (I Thessalonians 4:16-17).
WHEN WILL THE JUDGMENT OF NATIONS TAKE PLACE?
“For, behold, in those days, and in that time, when I shall bring again the captivity of Judah and Jerusalem, I will also gather all nations, and will bring them down into the valley of Jehoshaphat, and will plead with them there for My people and for My heritage Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations, and parted My land” (Joel 3:1-2, Matthew 25:31).
It will be after “the captivity of Judah and Jerusalem.” It will be after Israel has been judged in the tribulation, and completely regathered, and vindicated openly before the nations of the world gathered in the valley of Jehoshaphat. The Israel regathered to Palestine at this time is the Israel which has acknowledged Jesus to be their promised Messiah. It is this Israel Jesus refers to when he says in Matthew 25:40, ‘‘These My brethren.”
Actually the judgment of the goat nations starts with the first day of the great tribulation: or the first day of the last three and one half years of the seven year tribulation period. It commences at the same time that sin reaches its greatest pinnacle this side of the crucifixion of the Son of God. That is, it begins with the abomination of desolation spoken of by the Prophet Daniel, and reiterated by our Lord while on earth (Matthew 24:15).
“Thrust in Thy sickle, and reap; for the harvest of the earth is ripe. And He that sat on the cloud thrust in the sickle on the earth; and the earth was reaped” (Revelation 14:15-16). The second advent of Christ means eternal woe to all up to that time who have not trusted in the work He accomplished at His first advent. There will be some saved during the millennium but bear in mind, all that initially go into the millennium are saved (Matthew 25:34) .
THERE ARE MANY JUDGMENTS SPOKEN OF IN SCRIPTURE
1. The elect were judged in Christ, their substitute. “For He hath made Him to be sin for us, Who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him” (II Corinthians 5:21). “For Christ also hath suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God” (I Peter 3:18).
2. The judgment seat of Christ, the Bema seat, or mercy seat where the faithful saints arc rewarded (II Corinthians 5:8-10).
3. Israel is judged in the great tribulation (ibid.).
4. The Gentile nations are judged at the climax of the great tribulation (Matthew 25:31-46).
5. The final judgment at the white throne. This is not a judgment in the usual sense of the word. It is the time when all who have not bowed the knee to Christ in time will receive their sentencing in the eternal lake of fire (Revelation 20:11-15).
WHICH JUDGMENT DO YOU BELONG TO?
Remember, “The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all nations that forget God” (Psalms 9:17).
While the communist nations are avowed atheists, and at their hands the blood of millions shall be required, many of the western democracies need to examine themselves, for their religious veneer is not sufficient to cover their God defying immorality.
While we (United States) with one hand point at the evil of communism, let us take the other hand, and set our own house in order. While communism blames everything on the Jews, and Israel will be their whipping boy right down to the end, let us not compound our sin by blaming communism for it. Communism is not a qualified scapegoat on which the free world may place all their guilt. A person cannot get rid of their sin by blaming someone else for it. Neither can a nation. At His name (JESUS) every knee shall bow. I hope it is in this life, Dear Reader, that you bend the knee to Him.
(Sovereign Grace Advocate - September, 1978)
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