PERPETUITY OF THE EARTH.
old idea that this earth is to be destroyed is very erroneous.
There is not a line of Scripture when properly viewed to support this
theory. Men are too prone to jump
at certain conclusions about the Scriptural doctrines without properly
considering them. A great routine
of false teachings on the Scriptures have been handed down to us from the dark
ages. The sad thing is that the
most of us accept them as true without ever investigating for ourselves.
A greater heresy never prevailed in the world than the one that this
earth is to be destroyed. There
is an abundance of Scripture to prove that the earth will stand forever.
This erroneous idea concerning the earth has grown from mistranslation
of certain words in the original Greek of the New Testament.
There are three different words in Greek all translated by our word
“world.” 1st, “kosmos,”
the material universe; 2nd, “oikoumenee,” the inhabitants of
the world; 3rd, “aion,” an age.
The Authorized Version makes no distinction between these different
words. For the use of the first
word, “kosmos,” see Luke 11: 50.
For the use of the second word, “oikoumenee,” see Heb. 2: 5.
For the use of the third word, “aion,” see Matt. 28: 20.
It should be noted that the expression, “end of the world,” in
Matt. 28: 20, should be; “the end of the age.”
Moreover, there are a great number of passages in the New Testament
that refer to the “end of the world, but in each and every case the Greek is
“aion,” or the “end of the age.”
Time is divided into many different ages, and that this present age
will come to a close is sure; but there is no Scripture to teach that this
earth will ever be destroyed. It
is a calamity that such an idea is inferred from a mistranslation of certain
SECOND COMING OF JESUS.
In contrast to such a false idea, let us notice a few plain statements
from the Word. “Thou hast
established the earth, and it abideth.”—Psa. 119: 90.
“Who laid the foundations of the earth, that it should abide for
ever.”—Ps. 104: 5. “The
earth abideth for ever.”—Eccl. 1: 4.
It is strange that Bible students see those passages that speak of the
“end of the world,” and have so much to say along that line; but never see
the Scriptures that speak of the earth’s abiding for ever, nor ever note
that it is the “age” and not the “world” or earth that is to have an
end. Here are two or more different
passages affirming that the earth abideth for ever.
God laid the foundations of the earth sure and steadfast.
When men build houses, erect mansions, or construct machinery, they usually
consider the question as to how much service can be secured from their work.
Likewise, it would seem that a World‑builder would have in mind
the possible durability and usefulness of His structure.
We know that there are many reasons for believing that the rocks and
minerals of the earth are the result of the workings of God in His laboratory
for millions of years. Now, our
question is this: Would God occupy so long a time in preparation of a
“mansion,” and then after a brief space of a few thousand years blot the
whole thing out of existence? What
would you think of a carpenter who would spend fifty years in building a house
to be burned down at his own hand, at the end of six months?
And, yet, this is the light in which many view God’s purpose in
constructing the earth. No.
God did not build the earth to destroy it.
He “laid the foundations of the earth, that it should no be removed
Next, let us study some of God’s promises to Abraham, after that Lot
was separated from him, “Lift up now thine eyes, and look from the place
where thou art northward, and southward, and eastward, and westward: for all
the land which thou seest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed for
ever.”— Gen. 13: 14, 15. This
is the promise of God to Abraham that
PERPETUITY OF THE EARTH.
would give to him and to his heirs the land of Canaan.
Everybody knows that the land of Canaan is a section of the earth.
That this promise refers to that certain section of the earth, no one
can deny. God promises to give to
the heirs of Abraham the land of Canaan—but for how long?
To the end of this age? To
the destruction of the earth? Nay,
but for ever. The question is,
Can God destroy the whole earth, the land of Canaan included, and then fulfil
this promise to the seed of Abraham? An
impossibility. “The Lord is not
slack concerning his promise.”—2 Pet. 3: 9.
Has the Lord forgotten His covenant with Abraham’s seed?
Can He ever forget it? “He hath remembered his covenant for ever, the
word which he commanded to a thousand generations.
Which covenant he made with Abraham, and his oath unto Isaac; and
confirmed the same unto Jacob for a law, and to Israel for an everlasting
covenant saying, Unto thee will I give the land of Canaan, the lot of your
inheritance: when they were but few men in number; yea, very few, and
strangers in it.”— Ps. 105: 8‑12.
How can God ever fulfil these promises?
It is possible only through the perpetuity of the earth.
What is our conclusion then? Just
this: “The earth abideth forever.”
There are people who are ready to limit God’s promises and fail to
see in them all that God means by them. However,
God means what He says. Men often
use words for naught: but not so with God.
Of course, there is figurative language in the Bible; but we should be
careful not to construe a passage of Scripture figuratively, just because it
conflicts with our former views of a subject.
There is no reason to believe that the above promise of God to Abraham
should be taken otherwise than literally.
There is no reason to limit this promise.
God has never limited it. Instead
of limiting and circumscribing it He has actually repeated it over and over.
“And I will establish my covenant between me and thee and thy seed
after thee in their generations for an everlasting covenant, to be a God unto
thee, and to thy seed after thee. And
I will give
SECOND COMING OF JESUS.
thee, and to thy seed after thee, the land wherein thou art a stranger, all
the land of Canaan, for an everlasting possession; and I will be their
God.”—Gen. 17: 7, 8. This was
a repetition of the same promise He had made to Abraham twenty years before.
In it, He tells him that the covenant He made with him is an
everlasting one. He tells him
that this covenant He will establish—make sure, firm, steadfast.
God’s covenant can never be broken.
The seed of Abraham must possess the land of Canaan forever. How
can this ever be? Again we
answer; only through the perpetuity of the earth.
Let us farther note the repetition of this promise.
Moses reminds God of His promise to Israel:
“Remember Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, thy servants, to whom thou
swarest by thine own self, and saddest unto them, I will multiply your seed as
the stars of heaven, and all of this land that I have spoken of will I give
unto your seed, and they shall inherit it forever.” —Ex. 32: 13.
Caleb reminds Joshua of God’s promise to him through Moses, saying,
“Surely the land whereon thy feet have trodden shall be thine inheritance,
and thy children’s for ever, because thou hast wholly followed the Lord my
God.”— Joshua 14: 9. How can
the children of Caleb possess a portion of the land of Canaan for ever if the
earth is to be destroyed? These
passages just make the fact that the earth is to abide for ever doubly sure.
Next, we want to notice what God says about the perpetuity of
Jerusalem. “Behold, the days
come, saith the Lord, that the city shall be built to the Lord from the tower
of Hanameel unto the gate of the corner.
And the measuring line shall yet go forth over against it upon the hill
Gareb, and shall compass about to Goath.
And the whole valley of the dead bodies, and of the ashes, and all the
fields unto the brook of Kidron, unto the corner of the horse gate toward the
east, shall be holy unto the Lord; it shall not be plucked up, nor thrown down
any more FOREVER.”—Jer. 31: 38‑40.
Jerusalem is a city here on the earth.
Here is God’s prophecy of its rebuilding, with His
PERPETUITY OF THE EARTH.
that it shall stand FOR EVER. How
can Jerusalem stand for ever if the earth is destroyed?
Another impossibility. Let
us note the Scripture again: “Judah shall dwell for ever, and Jerusalem from
generation to generation.”—Joel 3: 20.
“They that trust in the Lord shall be as Mount Zion, which can not be
removed, but abideth FOR EVER. As
the mountains are round about Jerusalem, so the Lord is round about his people
from henceforth even for ever.” —Psa. 125: 1, 2.
“And the Redeemer shall come to Zion, and unto them that turn from
transgression Jacob, saith the Lord. As
for me, this is my covenant with them, saith the Lord; My spirit that is upon
thee, and my words which I have put in thy mouth, shall not depart out of thy
mouth, nor out of the mouth of thy seed, nor out of the mouth of thy seed’s
seed, saith the Lord, from henceforth and FOR EVER.”—Isa. 59: 20, 21.
“In that day, saith the Lord, will I assemble her that halteth, and I
will gather her that is driven out, and her that I have afflicted; and I will
make her that halted a remnant, and her that was cast far off a strong nation:
and the Lord shall reign over them in Mount Zion from henceforth, even FOR
EVER.” —Micah 4: 6, 7.
Here are the promises of God that Jerusalem and Mount Zion shall abide
for ever. What are we to do with
these Scriptures? Shall we set
them aside as meaningless? or shall we embrace them and rejoice in the
promises they bring to us? As for
me, I accept them as a guarantee of the perpetuity of the earth.
How can I do otherwise? If
Jerusalem and Mount Zion are to stand for ever, then I am sure that this earth
shall never pass away.
In the next place, we want to note what God says concerning the
perpetuity of David’s throne. “And
it shall come to pass, when thy days be expired that thou must go to be with
thy fathers, that I will raise up thy seed after thee, which shall be of thy
sons; and I will establish his kingdom. He
shall build me an house, and I will establish his throne FOR EVER. I
will be his father, and he shall be my son: and I will not take
SECOND COMING OF JESUS.
my mercy away from him, as I took it from him that was before thee: but I will settle him in mine house and in my kingdom FOR EVER: and his throne shall be established FOR EVERMORE.”—1 Chron. 17: 11‑14. This is the promise of God to David that his throne should be established for ever. David’s throne was on earth, not in heaven. Jesus came of the seed of David. In Him shall this promise be fulfilled. Jesus is to sit on David’s throne, not only a thousand years, but for ever. “The Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: and he shall reign over the house of Jacob FOR EVER; and of his kingdom there shall be no end.”—Luke 1: 32, 33.
“Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end,
upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish
it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even FOR EVER.”—Isa. 9:
7. “The kingdoms of THIS WORLD
are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign FOR
EVER AND EVER.” —Rev. 11: 15. “There
was given him dominion, and glory, and a kingdom, that all people, nations,
and languages, should serve him: his dominion is an EVERLASTING dominion,
which shall not pass away, and his kingdom that which shall not be destroyed.
. . . . The saints of the most High shall take the kingdom, and possess the
kingdom FOR EVER, EVEN FOR EVER AND EVER.”—Dan. 7: 14‑18.
Such could never be should the earth be destroyed.
Our conclusion can be only this, viz., “THE EARTH ABIDETH FOR