The claim was big, the letters bold across the top of the Time magazine cover for November 2-9, 2020: “The Great Reset.” At the beginning of the special double issue of this well-respected international magazine, readers were informed that “the COVID-19 pandemic has provided a unique opportunity to think about the kind of future we want.”1 Inside the magazine, thought leaders from around the world offered their vision for a new kind of world— reimagining just about every aspect of life and urging the time for this “great reset” is now.
The worldwide explosion of the coronavirus has indeed drastically altered many aspects of life, and when one considers the political, economic, social, and natural disasters of the past year, even atheists recognize these are apocalyptic times.
Around the world, people are uneasy, fearful of what the future holds. They are searching for answers, and there are those eager to provide the panacea for which the crowds long.
AN ASTOUNDING PARTNERSHIP
Global influencers are seeking to change the world, promising a better tomorrow. One of the most astounding developments is a partnership between big business and the Vatican.
Fortune magazine reported on December 8, 2020, “The CEOs of Bank of America, BP, Johnson & Johnson, Salesforce, and several other Fortune 500 companies are joining the Council for Inclusive Capitalism With the Vatican, a new business organization affiliated with the Catholic Church and operating under ‘the moral guidance of Pope Francis.’”²
According to the article, the Council for Inclusive Capitalism With the Vatican³ developed from a global forum held at the Vatican in 2016, where the pope encouraged attendees to “seek ever more creative ways to transform our institutions and economic structures so that they may be able to respond to the needs of our day.”⁴
Those familiar with prophecy recognize the times in which we live. Numerous foretold events are rapidly taking place. People are desperately searching for answers, and we have been called to proclaim the truth as revealed in God’s Word.
TRUE TO THEIR TRUST
“In a special sense Seventh-day Adventists have been set in the world as watchmen and light bearers. To them has been entrusted the last warning for a perishing world. On them is shining wonderful light from the Word of God. They have been given a work of the most solemn import—the proclamation of the first, second, and third angels’ messages. There is no other work of so great importance. They are to allow nothing else to absorb their attention. . . . The world is to be warned, and God’s people are to be true to the trust committed to them.”⁵
These precious messages are filled with hope, direction, and empowerment for this very time. We know things will not get better—they will only become more complicated and confusing. And that’s what the three angels’ messages are all about—calling people out of confusion, out of Babylon, out of chaos, into a clear understanding that God has a plan for everyone if they will allow Him to work in their lives. And His plan is to have everyone by His side in the New Jerusalem.
In this special issue of Adventist World, focusing on the very important three angels’ messages, you will find three heartfelt appeals from previous General Conference presidents. A similar theme runs through each—the need for revival and an understanding of our calling as Seventh-day Adventists.
As a Seventh-day Adventist, you are not just part of one of many denominations. You are part of a unique people group, outlined in Revelation 12:17, “who keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus,” which, as Revelation 19:10 indicates, “is the spirit of prophecy.”
Seventh-day Adventists are a people faithful to God’s Word and to His great mission entrusted to them. But before we can proclaim God’s amazing angelic messages to the world, we must first be transformed by the Lord. That is why revival and reformation is so important.
A PROCLAIMER OF TRUTH
In the book of Isaiah we read about the call of Isaiah. God called Isaiah for a particular purpose, to intercede, to warn His people. And God is calling you, not as a prophet, but as a proclaimer of His truth.
When God called Isaiah, He gave him a vision of the throne room in heaven. “I saw the Lord sitting on a throne, high and lifted up, and the train of His robe filled the temple” (Isa. 6:1). Isaiah describes the amazing, awe-inspiring setting with a multitude of angels crying out, “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts; the whole earth is full of His glory!” (verse 3). And the posts of the door were shaken and the “house was filled with smoke” (verse 4).
Isaiah was completely taken aback. Everything around him told of God’s glory and power, and he felt totally diminished. He felt sinful and inadequate.
“Woe is me,” he cried, “for I am undone! Because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the Lord of hosts” (verse 5).
The Lord understood Isaiah, just as He knows your heart and mine. He knows exactly what you need, and if you are willing, He will take care of you even before you ask. Humble yourself before the Lord and see His power in your life. Stay connected to Him through Bible study every day, and through the study of the Spirit of Prophecy, and He will bless you amazingly.
The Lord knew Isaiah was overwhelmed, and He sent an angel to the altar in the sanctuary. The angel took a coal from the altar, and figuratively touched Isaiah’s lips, representing the cleansing power of Jesus Christ. Symbolically, Isaiah’s sin was taken away, and Christ’s robe of righteousness placed over him. Then, through the power of God, his life began to change through God’s sanctifying process, empowered by the Holy Spirit and Christ’s righteousness. The same thing can happen for you and me today.
Isaiah was thrilled because his sin was purged. He then heard the voice of the Lord calling, “Whom shall I send, and who will go for Us?” (verse 8). Happily, Isaiah answered immediately, “Here am I! Send me” (verse 8).
GOD’S CALL TODAY
That same voice is calling you and me today. He is saying, “I want you to prepare for the Second Advent, and I want you to tell somebody else about it.” We are all sinners at the foot of the cross, in need of that coal of fire to cleanse our lips, to bring us into right relationship with Jesus, so that we can proclaim this message with Holy Spirit power! Pray for the latter rain of the Holy Spirit.
We are told, “Christ says of His people: ‘Ye are the light of the world.’ . . . It is not a small matter that the counsels and plans of God have been so clearly opened to us. It is a wonderful privilege to be able to understand the will of God as revealed in the sure word of prophecy. This places on us a heavy responsibility. God expects us to impart to others the knowledge that He has given us. It is His purpose that divine and human instrumentalities shall unite in the proclamation of the warning message.”⁶
The time has come for us to become more serious than ever about the wonderful mission entrusted into our hands. Now is the time for Total Member Involvement. He calls you, just where you are, to be a light for Him.
We know our spiritual experience will be tried to the fullest; don’t lean on anything else except on Jesus. He will take you through. Just as He did for Isaiah, He will cleanse you and give you courage. He will place within your heart and mouth a beautiful assertiveness to proclaim the message of the last days—the three angels’ messages and the love of Christ embodied in His righteousness, and the great news that Jesus is coming soon!
A WAKE-UP CALL
What we are seeing today is a wake-up call, urging us to look to God’s Word and be ready for what’s coming. The Holy Spirit will carry us through. The Three Angels’ Messages have at their very core the justifying and sanctifying righteousness of Jesus Christ. And that’s why the fourth angel of Revelation 18:1-4 is calling people out of Babylon, out of confusion and into the pure light of truth— biblical truth. Not some humanistic, philosophical, machination of interesting concepts. No. Into pure, biblical truth. Only the Word of God will stand to the end of time!
“There are stormy times before us, but let us not utter one word of unbelief or discouragement. Let us remember that we bear a message of healing to a world filled with sin sick souls.”⁷ That’s our message. That’s our mission. “In the darkest days, when appearances seem most forbidding, fear not. Have faith in God. He knows your need. He has all power.”⁸
Let us prepare for the end of time by leaning completely on Christ and His power, studying our Bibles and the Spirit of prophecy, and earnestly praying as we share the Three Angels’ Messages. The Lord will prepare us for what is to come and our role in it. “It is in a crisis that character is revealed. When the earnest voice proclaimed at midnight, ‘Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him,’ and the sleeping virgins were roused from their slumbers, it was seen who had made preparation for the event.”⁹
We are living in the last days. Jesus is soon to come, and His voice rings out to you and me: “Who will go for Us?” Are you willing to say, “Lord, here I am! Send me! I Will Go”?¹⁰
President of the Worldwide Seventh-day Adventist Church •
Ted N. C. Wilson is president of the worldwide Seventh-day Adventist Church. Additional articles and commentaries are available from the president’s office on Twitter: @pastortedwilson and on Facebook: @Pastor Ted Wilson.