33 “Those who are wise will instruct many, though for a time they will fall by the sword or be burned or captured or plundered. 34 When they fall, they will receive a little help, and many who are not sincere will join them. 35 Some of the wise will stumble, so that they may be refined, purified and made spotless until the time of the end, for it will still come at the appointed time.
This is the article I should not have to write. The traditional COG teaching is quite clear that “the time of the end” written three times in the Book of Daniel refers to the time leading up to Christ’s return. It is often synonymous with “last days” or the “end of the world” (KJV, better translated “end of the age” in more modern translations).
HWA wrote about the time of the end:
When Is the End Time?
We have faced the question: How can we prove that this generation is the end-time generation as described in the Bible when there have always been wars and famines and pestilences and…?
Matthew 24:22 gives the answer: The time of Christ’s second coming and the end of the present age would occur at a time when mankind would be on the brink of the ultimate abyss of complete destruction. All human life on earth would have to be in danger.
Mankind now has the capacity to self-destruct! Modern weaponry has now made possible the realization of what once was science fantasy — the doomsday weapon. Ultimate oblivion!
This is precisely the situation today.
It has never been this way before.
This is the end-time generation.
~ Herbert W Armstrong, “Is This the End Time?“
It seems far-fetched to me that anyone would defend any other use of the term “end time” or “time of the end”.
What is interesting is that perhaps the best description actually comes from UCG:
The meaning of “the time of the end”
One brief overview of the time of the end is found in the book of Daniel. Starting in Daniel 11:40, God reveals to Daniel several major events to take place “at the time of the end.”
In chapter 12 God tells Daniel: “At that time Michael shall stand up, the great prince who stands watch over the sons of your people; and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation, even to that time. And at that time your people shall be delivered, every one who is found written in the book.
“And many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, some to shame and everlasting contempt … But you, Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book until the time of the end; many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall increase” (Daniel 12:1-4).
Here the end time is described as culminating in “a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation.” It is also a time of increased travel and communication and an explosion of knowledge, as seen from the description that “many shall run to and fro and knowledge shall increase.”
Several centuries after Daniel’s time, Jesus’ disciples asked Him about the end time. His response echoed Daniel’s words: “For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be” (Matthew 24:21).
Later God revealed to Daniel more information about the end. “And one said to the man clothed in linen, who was above the waters of the river, ‘How long shall the fulfillment of these wonders be?’ Then I heard the man clothed in linen [say] … that it shall be for a time, times, and half a time; and when the power of the holy people has been completely shattered, all these things shall be finished.
“Although I heard, I did not understand. Then I said, ‘My lord, what shall be the end of these things?’ And he said, ‘Go your way, Daniel, for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end’ ” (Daniel 12:6-9).
This scripture indicates that the time of the end will be discernible to God’s people. This time is the period leading up to and including unparalleled world trouble lasting 3 1⁄2 years (in biblical language, “a time [a year], times [two years] and half a time [half a year]”), which will conclude with the establishment of God’s Kingdom on earth.
~ Beyond Today, “What Is the Time of the End?“
There are many in COG circles who will accuse UCG of being “lukewarm” and such, but reading the above makes it very clear what they believe about the end time rather than muddy it up and confuse the reader.
You know, even Wikipedia has a clear explanation of the “End time“:
The end time (also called end times, end of time, end of days, last days, final days, or eschaton) is a future time-period described variously in the eschatologies of several world religions (both Abrahamic and non-Abrahamic), where world events achieve a final climax.
It is to our shame that even the Protestants get the idea of what “time of the end” means, even if they get the events within it wrong:
9. When would Daniel’s mysteries be unsealed? Daniel 12:6, 9.
Answer: At the time of the end.
The entire focus of the book of Daniel is on “the time of the end.” The stories in Daniel reveal faith, courage and perseverance in the face of difficulty and challenge. Its prophecies reveal the great prophetic events in the plan of God, demonstrating that He is still in control.
~ It Is Written, “Lesson 12 – The End and a New Beginning“
In fact, most Protestant references to “end times” and “time of the end” don’t even bother to define the term because it is assumed to be understood. It is so deeply engrained within our culture that even popular movie titles have no issue with playing on the term.
Seriously, is this rebuke at weasel words even needed?