1 Thessalonians 5:2, 3 tells us that there will be a cry of peace and security as a final sign before the arrival of Jehovah’s day. So what is Jehovah’s day? According to this past week’s Watchtower study “As used here, “Jehovah’s day” refers to the period that will start with the destruction of false religion and will culminate in the war of Armageddon.” (w12 9/15 p. 3 par. 3)
Not wanting to jump to any conclusions, and since no scriptural support was provided in the article for this statement, and given our dubious record when it comes to predicting any prophetic time line, we do well to ask ourselves, “What does the Bible actually teach about the sequence of events surrounding Jehovah’s day?”
To answer that, let’s look at what Peter said when quoting from Joel 2:28-32: “And I will give portents in heaven above and signs on earth below, blood and fire and smoke mist; 20 the sun will be turned into darkness and the moon into blood before the great and illustrious day of Jehovah arrives.”’ (Acts 2:19, 20)
Where does this fit into the prophetic timeline according to what is written? After all, we don’t want to go beyond the things that are written.
Matthew quoted Jesus as saying there would be great tribulation. We teach that the first century fulfillment of that—the siege and subsequent destruction of Jerusalem from 66 to 70 C.E.—is a minor fulfillment. Jerusalem’s destruction prefigures the destruction of the antitypical Jerusalem, which is modern-day Christendom. So when Jesus spoke of the great tribulation in Mt. 24:15-22 he was not just talking about his day, but about the destruction of Babylon the Great.
Fine. Now, Jesus then said that “Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light…” (Mt. 24:29)
Let’s be clear on this. The Scriptures explicitly state that Jehovah’s day comes after the sun and moon are darkened. (Acts 2:20) They also explicitly state that the darkening of the sun and moon comes after the great tribulation. (Mt. 24:29)
Do we see the problem with claiming Jehovah’s day includes the destruction of false religion?
How can the destruction of false religion (the great tribulation) be the start of Jehovah’s day and yet still come before the sun and moon are darkened if those events themselves come before Jehovah’s day?
So unless the Governing Body can explain from Scripture how this is possible, we must conclude that the cry of peace and security comes after Babylon’s destruction.
This also makes more sense. Why would there be some very distinctive and identifiable global cry of peace and security while—as this same article puts it—“warmongering religion continues to be a disruptive force in the world”? Would it not be more logical that in the aftermath of the destruction of false religion, the rulers of the world, while lamenting its loss, will justify themselves before the masses claiming that it was all for the long-term good; that despite the economic consequences, there would now be real reason to hope for lasting peace and security?
Of course, that is just conjecture. However, what is not conjecture is what the Bible explicitly states as to the sequence of events that identify Jehovah’s day, and what is stated indicates that Jehovah’s day is, and only is, Armageddon.