The Time Lines

I. The information in 2 Peter 3 gives us the broadest picture.

A. There was a “KOSMOS” that previously existed and has ended (3:5-6).

1. It “was of old” and by “the word of God” (Genesis 1-6; John 1:1-3; Colossians 1:16-17; Hebrews 1:2).

2. It was physically much different than today’s environment (Genesis 2-3).

3. It was spiritually much worse than today’s wickedness (Genesis 6:1-7).

4. It was destroyed by water (Genesis 6 through 9; Isaiah 54:8-9; Matthew 24:37-39; Hebrews 11:7; 2 Peter 2:5).

5. It was an age of rebellion.

B. There exists “the heavens and earth that are now” (3:7-9).

1. It “groans and travails” (Romans 8:22).

2. It is “kept” (preserved) by “the same word” (creative power).

3. Its preservation is based on God’s longsuffering toward men.

4. It is destined to be destroyed by fire (2 Peter 3:10-12).

5. It is an age of redemption.

C. There will be a “new heavens and a new earth” (3:13).

1. It will be very different environmentally (Isaiah 65:17; Revelation 21:1).

2. It will experience the personal presence of God (Revelation 21:2-3).

3. It will be without pain, sorrow, or sinful inhabitants (Revelation 21:4-8).

4. It will be an age of righteousness.

II. The periods of Bible revelation are easy to compare.

A. The first nine chapters of Genesis contain the record of the First Age.

1. The Creation Week (Genesis 1-2)

2. The Fall of Man and God’s Judgment (Genesis 3)

3. The Rise of Civilization (Genesis 4-5)

4. The Apex of Evil and Violence (Genesis 6)

5. The Flood and Global Destruction (Genesis 7-9)

B. The New Age and the New Nation are clearly presented.

1. Nimrod, Babel, and the Table of Nations (Genesis 10-11)

2. Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and Joseph (Genesis 12-50)

3. Moses, Israel, Conquest, Judges (Exodus through Judges)

4. Age of Israel’s Kings (1 Samuel through 2 Chronicles) 

5. Prophetic Warnings and Captivity (Major and Minor Prophets)

6. Return of Israel (Ezra & Nehemiah)

7. The Coming of the Messiah (Matthew through John)

8. The Church and Doctrinal Foundations (Acts through Jude)

9. The Revelation of Jesus Christ and the End of the Age

III.  The Book of Daniel records four prophetic visions of World Empires.

A. The Great Image of Nebuchadnezzar (Daniel 2)

1. Head of Gold – Nebuchadnezzar and Babylon (Daniel 2:37-38)

2. Breast and Arms of Silver (later shown to be Media/Persia)

3. Stomach and Sides of Brass (later shown to be Greece)

4. Legs of Iron & Feet of Mixed Iron and Clay (later known to be Rome)

5. Stone Cut Without Hands God’s Everlasting Kingdom (Daniel 2:44-45)

B. The Fifth Kingdom represented by the “Little Stone” cut out of the mountain without hands is the Lord Jesus Christ (Daniel 2:34-35).

1. The Stone came against the feet of the image and destroyed it (Daniel 2:34).

2. The Stone came against the remaining kingdoms of gold, silver, and brass and scattered them to the four winds (Daniel 2:35).

3. The Stone then began to grow until it filled the whole earth (Daniel 2:35).

4. The God of heaven sets up an eternal kingdom that will never be destroyed or taken over by another (Daniel 2:44).

C. The Four Great Beasts, the Little Horn, and the Ancient of Days (Daniel 7)

1. The Lion with Eagle’s Wings likely Babylon (Daniel 7:4)

2. The Bear raised up on one side likely Media/Persia (Daniel 7:5)

3. The Leopard with four heads and four wings – likely Greece (Daniel 7:6)

4. The Dreadful and Terrible Beast likely Rome (Daniel 7:7)

5. The other “horn” rises up from among ten horns likely the 8th head of the Beast in Revelation (Daniel 7:8, 20-25)

6. The Ancient of Days sits in judgment to implement the Kingdom of God and designate the Son of Man as the Ruler (Daniel 7:9-14, 27-28).

D. The Ram and the Goat– More specific information (Daniel 8)

1. The Ram (Daniel 8:3-4) this is Media and Persia (Daniel 8:20).

a. It had two horns with one higher than the other one higher horn came up last.
b. It was overthrown by “the notable horn” of the Goat (Daniel 8:5-7).

2. The Shaggy Male Goat (Daniel 8:5-14) this is Greece (Daniel 8:21).

a. It had a “notable horn” between its eyes (Alexander the Great).
b. Four “notable horns” grew up out of the broken horn.

3. Another horn grew out of the four horns likely the 7th head of the Beast pictured in Revelation 13 and 17 (Daniel 8:9-12).

a. It was a “little horn” at the start.
b. It will exalt itself as “Prince of the Host” (Daniel 8:11, 25).
c. It is exceedingly wicked and sinister (Daniel 8:23-24).        

IV. The Beast and its “other beast” are the key forces in the end time events (Revelation 13 and 17).

A. This “Beast” has seven heads and ten horns crowned with open blasphemy (Revelation 13:1).

1. He is shaped like a Leopard, with the feet of a Bear, and the mouth of a Lion (13:2).

a. This suggests a parallel with the information in Daniel 7:7 through 26 about the fourth “dreadful and terrible” beast.
b. This also suggests remnants of the three other beasts in Daniel 7:4-6.
c. This would further suggest that the “heads” (since they all have the mouth of a lion) might be sequential (appear one after another) rather than all sit on the leopard-like beast at the same time. 
d. This would follow the sequential disclosure of this same beast in Revelation 17:10.

2. He has one of his “heads” mortally wounded (by a sword – Revelation 13:14), but healed (Revelation 13:3; 17:10-11).

3. He is given power by Satan (Revelation 13:4) and is to rule for 42 months (Revelation 13:5).

B. This imagery is amplified in Revelation chapter 17.

1. The seven “heads” are seven “mountains” (Revelation 17:9).

a. “Mountains” seem to equate to “kingdoms.”
b. The “mountains of . . .” is a frequent phrase in Scripture alluding to the “land of . . . :”
c. This is further made likely by the amplification of the notation that the Whore is “sitting” on “peoples, multitudes, nations, and tongues” (Revelation 17:15).
d. The possibility that this passage is referring to seven specific mountains (such as the land surrounding Rome) cannot be denied, but it is a less obvious interpretation.

2. The seven “mountains” are ruled by seven “kings” (Revelation 17:10).

a. Five are fallen – have come and gone.
b. One is – exists at the time of John’s writing.
c. One is yet to come – is not yet in power.

3. The “Seventh” becomes an “Eighth” – a reference back to Revelation 17:8 and Revelation 13:3.

C. The “Other Beast” with two horns is introduced (Revelation 13:11-18).

1. This “beast” looks like a lamb, but speaks like a dragon (13:11), for the dragon (13:12-17), and during the same time period as “the” Beast.

a. He exercises authority in the name of the “First Beast” (13:12).
b. He does great “wonders” and “miracles” (apparently to mimic the power of the Two Witnesses – same “fire from heaven”) that deceive men (13:12-14).

2. This beast is the “False Prophet” (Revelation 16:13; 19:20; 20:10).

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