One World, One Government, Under God’s Sovereignty
1. What is sovereignty defined as being, and how has it affected our earth?
FOR CENTURIES it has been argued that the sovereignty of a government has its basic source in the people governed.a In the realm of political science sovereignty is said to be “the supreme power in a State by which the government is administered.”b In recent times more and more lands have gone over to the idea that sovereignty resides with the people.c However, in some lands it is still recognized that the supreme power in the State is possessed by the sovereign, such as the king or the emperor. Whatever be the case, there is today no one man or one national group of people that exercises sovereignty over all the earth. Rather, our earth is the location of many sovereignties. This is a major cause for strife and conflict. The earth has no rest, no global peace.
2. Why are all of us affected by the national sovereignties around the earth, and what patriotic stand do some take toward their national government?
2 All of us are affected by the sovereignties that are exercised around the earth. Relatively few of us individuals are what may be called “a man without a country.” The most of us are members of some nation, citizens of some country. As such, we are expected to have a national pride. We are made very sensitive of our nationality, so that we resent and take offense at any slur that is made against the nation that we represent. During international disputes many devotees of a national government take the patriotic position expressed in the words, “My country—right or wrong!”
3. What internal sovereignty and what external sovereignty do the nations today exercise?
3 Today more nations than ever before in human history command the loyalty of their citizens. In that world body known as the United Nations there are at present one hundred and thirty-eight member nations of diverse political complexions. There are yet other nations that are still outside the United Nations organization. Each of these nations, whether inside or outside the United Nations, is jealous of its internal sovereignty and of its external sovereignty. Each nation claims and safeguards those governmental powers that a political State possesses internally over its own citizens and even over foreigners dwelling within the national borders and over private ships of its citizens on the high seas. In the exercise of external sovereignty, each nation insists and acts upon its right to enter into relations with any foreign political state, either by making a peaceful treaty or by declaring war. From the present-day human standpoint, all of this seems right and natural. Patriotic!
4. During this century, what political movement became epidemic, and what question is raised as to brotherhood between nations and individuals?
4 The facts of modern history show that nationalism has come to the fore in this twentieth century, since the first war that was fought on a global scale. According to the winning side, it was fought to make the world safe for democracy. The striving of the peoples everywhere for national sovereignties by the creation of new political states became epidemic. Nationalism became a plague to all mankind. Instead of pacifying world conditions by the satisfying of local peoples wanting nationhood, it led to the multiplying of problems national and international. After nineteen years of operation by the now dead League of Nations and, then, thirty years of operation by the United Nations, there is today no brotherhood of the nations, just as there is no “brotherhood of man.” And yet, are not all men brothers “under the skin”? Are not all nations brother nations, made up of citizens who are brothers “under the skin”? Why, then, this absence world wide of brotherhood that should make all men everywhere act like loving brothers of one big human family?
5. Do we have on earth “one world” under “one government,” and to whom would this be a desirable thing?
5 We are obliged to confess that mankind today is not “one world” and that, despite the existence of the United Nations, it is not under “one government.” Would we like to have all living mankind to be “one world” and under “one government”? In the face of human experience for the past six thousand years, that would be a most desirable thing for all those of us who desire harmony, peace, justice, security, human fellowship and the joy of living.
6, 7. (a) Why were the peoples of earth never before so close together, so interdependent? (b) How many would be affected by another world war, and why?
6 All of us people, regardless of where we live on this planet, are held captive to this earth. It is true that six space flights have landed men on the moon, but these men, in order to survive, have had to return to this earth. They have been glad to get back to this earth. Here is where they were meant to live, and here only is where human creatures, as human beings, can live forever. Men, wherever they may live on this planet, are neighbors of one another, for they are all inhabitants of the one earth. They are, in general, subject to the same necessities of life. And now the means of rapid communication by telephone, telegraph, radio and television, and the various means for travel on land, on sea and in the skies, have brought all peoples closer together than ever before. Never before were the peoples of the earth so interdependent.
7 Like in one big human body, every other part of human society is affected by what happens to one particular part of the human family. In the face of the advances in the science of modern warfare, another world war, a war employing nuclear weapons with intercontinental ballistic missiles, would have disastrous effects upon all creatures, human and animal, upon our earth.
8, 9. (a) What danger is common to all mankind, and what is needed on the part of all nations to prevent the worst? (b) What warning of doom came from the Far East last January, calling for cooperation by whom?
8 Danger of extinction is now common to all mankind. It is now recognized that one common human effort globally is needed to ward off such a world calamity. An outright self-interest on the part of the people demands such a thing. But where among the self-seeking people of the day is there the feeling of a dire need to cooperate together to prevent the worst? A call for it comes from the Far East:
9 Under the headlines “Miki: Mankind Is Doomed Without Co-operation,” the Times of Singapore, Asia, under date of January 26, 1975, reports: “TOKYO, Sat. — Prime minister Tako Miki warned yesterday that the world is doomed if individual national interests are carried out ‘in a narrow, short-term sense.’ Mr. Miki said in a keynote speech delivered at the Diet (parliament): ‘The world is becoming smaller and smaller and the whole of mankind shares the same fate aboard the same ship.’ He stressed the need for international co-operation and interdependence among nations. . . . ‘To our regret, however, the world has not yet reached a stage where this interdependence is fully realized. If this situation persists, it is clear that in the not-too-distant future we will be doomed. In this age, no single nation or individual can get along successfully by themselves any longer. The ultimate objective of diplomatic endeavor for any country is, of course, to ensure its national interests. This expression, however, should not be construed in a narrow, short-term sense.’”
WHAT IS MISSING ABOUT INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION
10. What would impair the unifying strength of the international cooperation that was recommended?
10 This was indeed a solemn warning for the Japanese premier to make. He remains strongly convinced that mankind must now choose between full international cooperation and doom! In his view, however, the national sovereignty of each political state is not to be sacrificed, even while this cooperation obtains. Accordingly, the “ultimate objective of diplomatic endeavor” is to be that of ensuring the national interests of each country. In this way the national groups everywhere would be holding on to their national sovereignty. This would allow for national pride with all its divisive effects to remain. So this would work against true inner unity between national groups. It would be a weakness impairing the strength of international cooperation. Never would the result be “one government”! Neither “one world”!
11. What is the highly important thing that would be missing from such international cooperation?
11 So, then, is it merely the cooperation between sovereign political states that is needed to save the world of mankind from doom? Evidently something more is needed, something highly important. The now defunct League of Nations did not supply that need. The now functioning United Nations does not supply it either. Political scientists of the world might ask, What is the thing needed, that is missing from such organizations for international cooperation? We answer, It is unselfish cooperation with the One whom many nations claim to worship. Who that One is we can determine from the song that used to be treated as a national anthem in a North American country. It is entitled “My Country, ’Tis of Thee,” or, simply, “America.” The last verse of this song, at the playing of which the audience would rise to its feet, reads as follows:
“Our fathers’ God, to Thee,
Author of liberty, to Thee we sing.
Long may our land be bright with freedom’s holy light.
Protect us by Thy might,
Great God our King.”
12. (a) How does an associated nation also claim that God is its heavenly Sovereign? (b) How does such a singing nation prove whether God is its Sovereign or not?
12 Furthermore, this anthem was sung to the tune of the British national anthem, entitled “God Save Our Gracious King (Queen).” In agreement with that last verse of “America,” the Supreme Court of the nation has ruled that the United States is a Christian nation. Also, in England there is still a union of Church and State, the Church of England being the established State Church. The God of the Holy Bible is the deity here meant. All the nations of Christendom profess to worship this God of the Holy Scriptures. By singing to him the words “Great God our King,” the Americans who can join in that patriotic song are tunefully acknowledging God, “our fathers’ God,” as the sovereign, higher than the chief executive of the United States of America. But do the singers of the anthem say more than they mean? Do they really let him be the Sovereign of their own nation as well as the rest of the universe? The singers prove whether He is their real Sovereign by submissively cooperating with him or failing to do so.
13. (a) Whom does the King James Authorized Version Bible show to be the Sovereign of the Universe? (b) So, how only can “one world” under “one government” come about?
13 The translation of the Holy Bible into English that was authorized by King James I of Great Britain in 1611 to be read in the churches of the country points to the sovereignty of this God. In Psalm 83:18 it reads: “That men may know that thou, whose name alone is JEHOVAH, art the most high over all the earth.” In fulfillment of the prayer contained in that Psalm, all men, all human inhabitants of the earth, will yet know that the God whose name is Jehovah is the Highest Sovereign of all and, hence, the Sovereign over our earth also. Today the larger number of the political nations do not worship Jehovah as their God, as the nations of Christendom claim to do. But, whereas the so-called “Christian” nations profess to worship the God whose name the Bible says is Jehovah, they do not in fact cooperate with Him. So, in actuality, not one of the nations that are members of the United Nations organization is cooperating with the Most High God, Jehovah. Only when all living mankind obediently cooperates with this Universal Sovereign can there come about “one world” under “one government.”
FOR WHOSE SOVEREIGNTY SHALL WE DECIDE?
14. Why is it now necessary for each one of us to make a personal decision on the issue that must be settled for all the earth?
14 Is such a thing what we want with all our hearts? Since the political states do not want such a thing in God’s way and since they refuse to cooperate with Him, then it is left to each one of us to make his own personal decision on the issue that must shortly be settled for all the earth. Shall we each one pay due respects to Jehovah’s universal sovereignty and live in harmony with it? Only by doing so shall we be privileged to enjoy the “one world, one government, under God’s sovereignty.”
15. What explains why the projects of the nations have failed despite international cooperation?
15 When all of us cooperate and act as a united body, we can generally get things done. When we work together with the Sovereign Lord God Jehovah, we can be sure of working for success. This fact helps us to understand why the nations have failed to have success in their international projects. It is true that the nations, in their desperate plight today, are seeking to unify the world under one single world arrangement. Why, there is even talk of handing over world sovereignty to the United Nations organization. However, as regards the “one world” of mankind under “one government” that the nations would like to bring about for the sake of world peace and security, is it the “one world” under “one government” that the Sovereign Lord God has in mind? Is it what He has foretold in his infallible written Word, the Holy Bible?
16, 17. (a) How did nations cooperate together in a bad way nineteen centuries ago at Jerusalem? (b) How did those who prayed and mentioned this evil cooperation address God, and what did they ask Him to do?
16 We know that human creatures and nations can cooperate in a bad work as well as in a good work. It was not quite two thousand years ago that nations got together in a bad work. They cooperated together, but not in cooperation with the Most High God of heaven. This was called attention to in a very solemn way in the city of Jerusalem, after a couple of men had been arrested for preaching in the city temple, had been tried in the Supreme Court and had been released under threats. Concerning the clash of sovereignties that was then and there involved, the historic account tells us, in the following words, according to The New English Bible:
17 “As soon as they were discharged they went back to their friends and told them everything that the chief priests and elders had said. When they heard it, they raised their voices as one man and called upon God: ‘Sovereign Lord, maker of heaven and earth and sea and of everything in them, who by the Holy Spirit, through the mouth of David thy servant, didst say, “Why did the Gentiles rage and the peoples lay their plots in vain? The kings of the earth took their stand and the rulers made common cause against the Lord and against his Messiah.” They did indeed make common cause in this very city against thy holy servant Jesus whom thou didst anoint as Messiah. Herod and Pontius Pilate conspired with the Gentiles and peoples of Israel to do all the things which, under thy hand and by thy decree, were foreordained. And now, O Lord, mark their threats, and enable thy servants to speak thy word with all boldness.’”—Acts 4:23-29; also The New American Bible; Revised Standard Version; Moffatt; NW.
18. What did those praying Christians ask God to help them to do, and what was the result of the answer to their prayer?
18 Those disciples of Jesus the Messiah made their individual decisions and took their stand on the side of the universal sovereignty of the Creator of heaven and earth. That is why they prayed to Him to help them to ignore the ruling and threats of the national Supreme Court and go right ahead with the forbidden preaching of God’s message about his anointed Servant, Jesus the Messiah. They exposed the political conspiracy of King Herod Antipas, who represented the national group of the Idumeans, and Governor Pontius Pilate, who represented the Roman Empire and Tiberius Caesar, and the unchristianized Jews. Their prayer was answered, and the preaching of the good news by these upholders of the sovereignty of the Lord God Jehovah went on, both among the Jews and, later, among the Gentile nations. As a result, thousands of believers took their stand upon the side of the Sovereign Lord Jehovah, to cooperate with him in his Messianic purpose.
19. In contrast with the situation nineteen centuries ago, we today have reached what fulfillment of David’s words in Psalm Two, and why should we be careful about the decision we make?
19 Today we have reached the climax in this divinely guided course of events that leads to “one world” under “one government” over which God is the Universal Sovereign. The prophetic words of David that were included in the prayer offered by the disciples of the Messiah nineteen centuries ago in Jerusalem had only an initial or a miniature fulfillment. It had involved King Herod and Governor Pontius Pilate and the Jewish people and the Roman soldiers whom these used in nailing Jesus the Messiah to a torture stake. In our twentieth century, the world events since the outbreak of World War I in the year 1914 furnish the proof that we have reached the final and full-scale fulfillment of those words of David found in Psalm Two. Now, more than at any time in the past, the issue of divine sovereignty is up for settlement. Our personal decision on the issue will be most serious in consequences to each one of us.
20 In order to aid us to make the decision that will lead to our enjoyment of “one world, one government,” under divine sovereignty, we need guidance. Can we go to the worldly nations for guidance in this respect? No, for they are bewildered, sinking deeper and deeper into the quagmire of perplexity because of not knowing the way out of their mounting difficulties. We cannot with success turn to the religious institutions of the nations, for the religious counsel that these have given to the political rulers has led the nations to the present international impasse. For the needed up-to-date, realistic, practical counsel that guides us in the right way, we must go to the written Word provided for us by the very One who long ago foretold this world distress. This was the wise course taken by the inspired psalmist of ancient times. Addressing himself to the divine Author of that prophetic Word, the psalmist said:
21 “With your counsel you will lead me, and afterward you will take me even to glory. Whom do I have in the heavens? And besides you I do have no other delight on the earth. But as for me, the drawing near to God is good for me. In the Sovereign Lord Jehovah I have placed my refuge, to declare all your works.”—Psalm 73:24, 25, 28.
22. So, of what can we be certain, according to the psalmist’s words?
22 By now choosing the Sovereign of all the universe to be our refuge, we, too, can be certain that he will lead us with his counsel and afterward bring us to unfading glory.
THE ONE GOVERNMENT FOR ONE WORLD UNDER GOD’S SOVEREIGNTY
23. To what conclusion about government of mankind are world counselors being forced?
23 Counselors and advisers on world affairs are continually being frustrated. Whether they like the thought or not, they are being forced to the conclusion that the human family, although now six thousand years old, is unable to govern itself. It has not of itself brought forth the type of government that has made or can make all mankind one world.
24. According to the start that God gave to mankind, why is he not to blame because mankind is not “one world” today?
24 Who is to blame? Not the Creator of the human family and hence not their heavenly Father. All mankind started from the one original man whom the Sovereign Lord God, Jehovah, brought into existence on earth. Afterward, from part of this man’s perfect body that the Creator used as a base, he made the first, original woman, that all mankind might be one flesh, the descendants of this original human pair. This fact was plainly stated to the philosophers of the Grecian High Court of the Areopagus in Athens, Greece, nineteen hundred years ago. To these eminent judges the Christian apostle Paul said: “He [God] made out of one man every nation of men, to dwell upon the entire surface of the earth, and he decreed the appointed times and the set limits of the dwelling of men, for them to seek God.”—Acts 17:22-27; Genesis 2:7-25; 1:26-31.
25, 26. (a) From the start, what was God’s purpose for mankind? (b) How was it shown to Adam that submission to God’s sovereignty was a way of life with eternity in view?
25 God meant for the human family to be “one world” of mankind, one human society all of the same bone, flesh and blood. This united human society was to dwell over all the surface of the earth, this being converted to a parklike garden or paradise as their home forever. Mankind was to have in subjection the fish, the birds and the land animals, but mankind itself was to be in subjection to the sovereignty of the Universal Ruler and Creator, the Most High, “whose name alone is JEHOVAH.” (Psalm 83:18, AV) As man’s Sovereign, Jehovah God stated to the first man the divine law, by obedience to which the perfect man could live on earth forever.
26 This law commanded perfect obedience to the Universal Sovereign, for God said to the man, Adam: “From every tree of the garden you may eat to satisfaction. But as for the tree of the knowledge of good and bad you must not eat from it, for in the day you eat from it you will positively die.” (Genesis 2:16, 17) For a time the man, Adam, and his wife, Eve, kept that divine command of loyal obedience. The human family was off to a perfect start. Submission to the Universal Sovereign, Jehovah God, was the way of life with eternity in view. The principle there set forth applies to us today. Shall we follow it?
27. The lack of oneness in the world of mankind today indicates that what took place, and when, and under what inducement?
27 Everybody will have to agree that the human family is not “one world” today, not an undivided human society, in spite of being of one flesh and blood. There are many self-assertive human sovereignties on earth at present, and these are dividing the loyalties of men. It is undeniable that in the distant past, before a son was born to Adam and Eve, there must have been a breakaway from the universal sovereignty of the Most High God, the Creator. What induced this breakaway? Only the Holy Bible, God’s written Word, gives the valid answer. The wrong inducement came from the realm of the unseen, from the spirit world. There one of the spirit subjects of Jehovah’s sovereignty saw an opportunity of setting up an independent sovereignty of his own.
28. The designations given to that spirit rebel harmonize with what course that he took to lead human revolt against God’s sovereignty?
28 Satan became a fitting name for this rebel, for the name means “Resister,” that is to say, to Jehovah God. Devil became a fitting designation for him, for the word means “Slanderer,” and Satan used slander against his Sovereign Lord in order to deceive and mislead. So to the woman Eve the Devil presented her heavenly Father as being a selfish liar to whom strict obedience was not due. Believing this lie, Eve ate from the forbidden fruit and broke her submission to the sovereignty of her heavenly Father. In line with the Devil’s scheme, she went farther than this: she prevailed upon her husband Adam to join her in a revolt against submission to the rightful sovereignty of his God and Father. It has turned out just as Satan the Devil figured it would: To this day the world of mankind has been born in sin against God, in nonsubmission to the sovereignty of the Most High God Jehovah.—Genesis 3:1 through 4:16; Romans 5:12.
29, 30. (a) How has mankind since been divided on the matter of submission to a sovereignty? (b) How did God exercise foreign sovereignty in his relations with the rebel sovereign?
29 Since that rebellion back there in the Garden of Eden, the descendants of Adam and Eve have been divided between submission to the universal sovereignty of Jehovah God and submission to the sovereignty of Satan the Devil, whom Jesus the Messiah called “the ruler of this world.” (John 12:31; 14:30; 16:11) Jehovah God did not enter into any treaty with this newly established inferior sovereignty. Exercising his power as Rightful Sovereign in control of his dealings with foreign governments, Jehovah God declared war upon the enemy sovereign. Showing supreme contempt for this Satanic sovereign, Jehovah God likened him to an earth-hugging serpent and said to him, as if speaking to the serpent whom the Devil had used to deceive Eve:
30 “I shall put enmity between you and the woman and between your seed and her seed. He will bruise you in the head [like treading on the head of a serpent to crush its brains] and you [like a serpent lying in wait] will bruise him in the heel.”—Genesis 3:1-15.
31. Warfare of what length did God declare against the foreign sovereign, and how did Paul indicate this in Romans 16:20?
31 Perpetual warfare Jehovah God there declared against the rebel sovereign and all those adhering to the sovereignty of this crafty rebel, who from the start tried to hide his identity from human creatures. Jehovah God has not forgotten his “foreign policy” of warfare against the enemy of both Him and mankind. More than four millenniums after the Great Adversary set up the foreign sovereignty at Eden, Jehovah God inspired the Christian apostle Paul to write to the congregation located at the seat of the Roman Empire: “The God who gives peace will crush Satan under your feet shortly. May the undeserved kindness of our Lord Jesus be with you.”—Romans 16:20. Compare Exodus 17:14; Isaiah 45:7.
32. (a) Who will be used to crush the Great Serpent underfoot, and how soon? (b) How was the bruising of the “heel” of God’s promised Seed accomplished, and how was there a healing?
32 The time for the crushing of the Great Serpent Satan the Devil and his “seed” “shortly” should now be near, after the passing of over nineteen hundred years. The principal one of the promised “Seed” of God’s “woman,” Jesus Christ, is now clothed with adequate power to crush this Satanic author of all earthly sovereignties foreign to Jehovah God, the only Giver of peace. Back in the first century of our Common Era, this “Seed” of God’s “woman” was bruised in the heel. This took place as the outcome of that conspiracy between the “peoples of Israel” and King Herod Antipas and the Roman Governor Pontius Pilate. The “heel” wound inflicted by the Great Serpent did cause the death of Jesus Christ on Passover Day of 33 C.E., but only a physical death. And, at any rate, Jesus, had to die a sacrificial death, according to God’s purpose. But the sacrificing course did not go unrewarded. On the third day of Jesus’ death, the Almighty God raised him from the dead to immortal spirit life in the heavens. God seated him at His own right hand, to await the time for the Great Serpent to be crushed in the head.—Hebrews 10:12, 13; 12:2; Luke 12:4, 5.
33. What government did Jesus as a man publicly preach, and from when on?
33 While Jesus the Messiah was still a perfect man on earth, he ceaselessly preached the Government that, under God’s sovereignty, will rule all mankind and make the obedient ones “one world.” He took up where his forerunner, John the Baptist, had left off, for the account tells us: “Now when he heard that John had been arrested, he withdrew into [the province of] Galilee. . . . From that time on Jesus commenced preaching and saying: ‘Repent, you people, for the kingdom of the heavens has drawn near.’”—Matthew 4:12-17.
34. Because of what choice when he was under temptation by the Devil did Jesus prove worthy to preach that Kingdom message?
34 Never would Jesus have been worthy to take up preaching that message if he had not made the right decision some months earlier. On that crucial occasion Jesus was out in the wilderness of Judea, where he had fasted in solitude for forty days. Then the invisible rebel sovereign approached him to tempt him away from his Messianic course. With respect to the third and last temptation, the record tells us: “Again the Devil took him along to an unusually high mountain, and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory, and he said to him: ‘All these things I will give you if you fall down and do an act of worship to me.’” What the Devil here offered Jesus was not the “one government” that would make all obedient mankind “one world.” It was not a world government under God’s sovereignty, but was one under the Devil’s sovereignty. For whose sovereignty Jesus made his unequivocal decision, the account goes on to tell us, saying: “Then Jesus said to him: ‘Go away, Satan [Resister]! For it is written, “It is Jehovah your God you must worship, and it is to him alone you must render sacred service.”’”—Matthew 4:1-10.
35, 36. After miraculously feeding the multitude, why did Jesus not let the people make him king, and yet why did he formally offer himself in fulfillment of Zechariah 9:9?
35 In deciding for the sovereignty of his God, Jehovah, Jesus was the perfect example for all of us today. But we must persist in our decision for God’s sovereignty, as Jesus did. On a later occasion, after he had fed an audience of five thousand men and their families in a miraculous way, many wanted to make this miracle-working provider of food their earthly king. But Jesus thwarted their efforts by getting away from them. He knew that the time had not yet come for him to offer himself in a formal way to the Jews as their Messianic king, in fulfillment of prophecy. (John 6:1-15) At God’s due time, on Sunday, Nisan 9, 33 C.E., Jesus rode, as foretold by Zechariah 9:9, into Jerusalem and went to its temple, where the nation’s high priest officiated. Jesus did not stop the great multitude that was accompanying him from loudly recommending him as king by shouting out:
36 “Save, we pray! Blessed is he that comes in Jehovah’s name! Blessed is the coming kingdom of our father David! Save, we pray, in the heights above!”—Mark 11:1-11, NW; Diaglott.
37. When did “the peoples of Israel” plainly declare publicly their decision on sovereignty, and how did Pilate go along with their decision?
37 Then it was the time for “the peoples of Israel,” as represented by their religious leaders, to decide and show the sovereignty to which they adhered. Five days later they plainly declared publicly whose sovereignty they chose. When Passover celebrators under the coaching of their priests clamored for the Roman Governor Pontius Pilate to have the prisoner Jesus killed on a stake, Pilate asked them to reconsider the matter by saying: “Shall I impale your king?” The issue of sovereignty was now squarely before “the peoples of Israel.” Whose sovereignty would they choose? The Bible account indicates, when it says: “The chief priests answered: ‘We have no king but Caesar.’” Caesar’s representative, Pilate, went along with their decision, for the account says: “At that time, therefore, he handed him over to them to be impaled.”—John 19:12-16.
38. By means of whom will the Great Serpent soon be crushed, and how does Psalm 2:8, 9 picture the crushing of the Serpent’s “seed” on earth?
38 That was the miniature fulfillment of the prophetic words of King David in Psalm 2:1, 2. (Acts 4:24-28) It set the pattern for the major fulfillment, which occurs in our day, when the paramount issue of world domination and universal sovereignty must be settled once and for all time. Satan the rebel sovereign has had his day in the bruising of the heel of the promised “Seed” of God’s “woman.” Now this Great Serpent, the heel bruiser, must have his own head bruised, and that affects all the “seed” of this Serpent at the same time. The same Second Psalm indicates how the crushing of the visible “seed” of the Great Serpent would be done. In Ps 2 verses eight and nine, Jehovah addresses his Anointed Son, Jesus Christ, and says: “Ask of me, that I may give nations as your inheritance and the ends of the earth as your own possession. You will break them with an iron scepter, as though a potter’s vessel you will dash them to pieces.”
39. The book of Revelation pictures what as God’s agency for smashing the sovereign nations on earth, and what part is Jesus Christ pictured as having therein?
39 The last book of the Holy Bible (Revelation 12:5) speaks of God’s kingdom of his Messiah as the divine agency that will “shepherd all the nations with an iron rod.” The nineteenth chapter, which describes the coming war with the earthly nations at Har–Magedon, speaks of the Son of God, Jesus Christ, as the one who “will shepherd them with a rod of iron,” and adds that “he treads too the winepress of the anger of the wrath of God the Almighty.” (Revelation 19:15; 16:14, 16) This crushing of the nations with their claims to national sovereignty is vividly pictured for us in the prophecy of Daniel, chapter two.
40. How does Daniel’s interpretation of Nebuchadnezzar’s dream picture the violent end of the system of things that has featured world powers, and how do we know that the end of the system is near?
40 In that chapter Daniel interprets the prophetic dream that the God of the heavens sent to Nebuchadnezzar, emperor of the Babylonian World Power, in the second year after he had destroyed the city of Jerusalem and the temple built by David’s son, King Solomon. The succession of world powers that began with the Babylonian and ran down through the Medo-Persian, the Grecian, the Roman and the Anglo-American, was pictured as a large, unusually bright image of several materials, with feet of iron and of clay. Then a stone that was cut out of a distant mountain, without the aid of human hands, struck the image on those feet and finally ground the whole fallen image to powder, which a strong wind blew away. If nothing else, that crushing of the symbolic image to powder pictured the end of a system of things by some supernatural agency that is not produced by human hands under the direction of human brains. The fulfillment of the prophecy that Jesus Christ gave concerning the “conclusion of the system of things” shows that the smashing of the system is at hand!—Matthew 24:3-22.
41. According to Daniel 2:44, what happens to the nations lined up with the United Nations, but what about the sovereignty of God’s Messianic kingdom?
41 Today, by being lined up with the unchristian organization of the United Nations, the worldly rulers display where they stand on the issue of sovereignty. So it is with regard to these political rulers, Communist and non-Communist, that the interpretative words of the prophet Daniel apply: “In the days of those kings the God of heaven [not human hands] will set up a kingdom which shall never be destroyed, nor shall its sovereignty be left to another people. It shall break in pieces all these kingdoms and bring them to an end, and it shall stand for ever.”—Daniel 2:1-44, Revised Standard Version Bible.
42, 43. (a)Who will share with the Messiah in that heavenly kingdom? (b) Daniel 7:26, 27 pictures the sovereignty over the earth as being given to what people?
42 This is the heavenly Messianic kingdom that Jehovah’s Christian witnesses have been proclaiming world wide since the year of its birth in the heavens at the end of the Gentile Times in the year 1914. (Luke 21:24; Matthew 24:14) Footstep followers of the Messiah, anointed like him with God’s spirit, are to share with the Messiah in that heavenly kingdom. This was spoken of prophetically in a dream that was sent to Daniel himself. In this prophetic dream the series of Gentile world powers from the Babylonian onward was pictured by four wild beasts. Concerning the divine judgment that was executed by the Supreme Court of the universe upon that fourth symbolic beast, Daniel 7:26, 27 explains:
43 “Then the court shall sit, and he shall be deprived of his sovereignty, so that in the end it may be destroyed and abolished. The kingly power, sovereignty, and greatness of all the kingdoms under heaven shall be given to the people of the saints of the Most High. Their kingly power is an everlasting power and all sovereignties shall serve them and obey them.”—NE; The Bible in Living English.
“ONE WORLD” UNDER IT
44. To whom will the sovereignty over the world of mankind be given in order that there may be “one government” over them?
44 The fulfillment of that prophecy is now about to take place. All the present-day national sovereignties on earth will shortly have to bow before the Messianic kingdom in the hands of the heavenly Son of God. (Daniel 7:1-12) That will make room for just the “one government” for all mankind. As Daniel 7:14 says: “On him [the Messianic Son of man] was conferred sovereignty, glory and kingship, and men of all peoples, nations and languages became his servants. His sovereignty is an eternal sovereignty which shall never pass away, nor will his empire ever be destroyed.”—The Jerusalem Bible.
45. (a)What will fulfillment of that prophecy mean for this generation of mankind? (b) What favorable opportunity is held out to us?
45 What will fulfillment of that prophecy mean for this generation of mankind? This: Present-time national sovereignties and the patriotic upholders of them will suffer extermination in the world’s greatest trouble that rapidly approaches, but the upholders of Jehovah’s universal sovereignty will be miraculously preserved and emerge alive from that “great tribulation.” (Matthew 24:21, 22; Mark 13:19, 20; Revelation 7:14, 15) Shall we be among these favored survivors of the “conclusion of the system of things”? The opportunity to be among such is held out to us by God’s written Word. What is now required of us is to take our stand immovably on the side of God’s sovereignty and of his Messianic kingdom and to stick to these in spite of all the future political, religious and social efforts to pull us away.
46. For how long now will the suffering upon us for sticking to Jehovah’s sovereignty last?
46 This may result in some suffering for us for as long as our persecutors are permitted to remain. Under such affliction we can remember the cry of earlier witnesses of the Lord God Jehovah who suffered, even to the death: “How long, sovereign Lord, holy and true, must it be before thou wilt vindicate us and avenge our blood on the inhabitants of the earth?” They were assured that it would be only “a little while longer” before this would occur.—Revelation 6:10, 11, NE; Moffatt; RS; NW.
47. When and how will Satan, the Great Serpent, be crushed under the feet of Christ’s disciples “shortly”?
47 It will be only a little while longer before the faithful upholders of Jehovah’s universal sovereignty will be vindicated in their position by His decisive victory over all the national sovereignties represented inside and outside the United Nations. Immediately thereafter the original rebel against Jehovah’s universal sovereignty, namely, Satan the Devil, and all his demon angels, will be given deserved treatment. Isolation in chains in an abyss out of communication with this earth will be their portion. (Revelation 20:1-3) Thereby the Great Serpent will be bruised in the head, as it were; and the loyal “Seed” of God’s “woman” will be the one by whom God will thus crush the Great Serpent and his demon seed under the feet of the faithful joint heirs of Christ.—Romans 16:20.
48. How is it that God’s “new order” will start out with “one world” under “one government”?
48 The human survivors of these momentous events will all be those adhering to the one Messianic kingdom of Jehovah’s victorious Son Jesus Christ. Consequently, at the very start of God’s righteous new order of things, there will be “one world” on earth, under “one government,” regardless of the tribes, peoples, races, nations and languages to which the “tribulation” survivors belonged. They will all be one human society on a cleansed earth, all of them worshiping the one living and true God, Jehovah, and all of them submitting to his Son, Jesus Christ, upon whose shoulder the princely rule will be laid. What a unifying force that will be!
49. That situation will be a force for what condition among mankind, under what one sovereignty?
49 What a force, too, that will be for worldwide peace! No more interreligious wars! No more territorial boundary disputes! No more interracial and international wars! No more political rivalries and contests! Bible prophecy says: “Jehovah must become king over all the earth. In that day Jehovah will prove to be one, and his name one.” (Zechariah 14:9) At the same time the “one government” under him, the Messianic kingdom of his enthroned Son Jesus Christ, will be an expression of His universal sovereignty.—Isaiah 9:6, 7.
50. In what good work will all mankind then cooperate, in fulfillment of what promise of Jesus to a dying wrongdoer?
50 “Shoulder to shoulder” all living mankind will serve the Sovereign Lord God, Jehovah. (Zephaniah 3:8, 9) As “one world” the new human society will cooperate together in a good work. They will cooperate in transforming the battered surface of this earthly globe to the state that its Creator originally purposed for it, that of a garden of Eden, a paradise of pleasure. (Genesis 1:27, 28; 2:7-15) Then there will be an answer to the request made by the sympathetic wrongdoer dying alongside Jesus Christ on a torture stake: “Jesus, remember me when you get into your kingdom.” Yes, then the reigning King will fulfill to him the promise: “Truly I tell you today, You will be with me in Paradise.”—Luke 23:42, 43, NW; Rotherham.
51. (a) How may mankind become Christ’s eternal children? (b) How will he lead them as an example in submitting to God’s sovereignty?
51 Not alone that kindly disposed criminal, but also all the rest of the human dead are involved, all for whom Jesus Christ died as a perfect human sacrifice. These also will come forth at his call to a resurrection from the dead. (Matthew 20:28; John 5:28, 29; 1 Timothy 2:5, 6; Acts 24:15) All the submissive ones will be incorporated into that “one world.” All will be brothers and sisters, for they will become the ransomed, adopted children of the one Eternal Father, Jesus Christ, who sacrificed his human life for them. (Isaiah 9:6, 7; Hebrews 2:9) By obedience to him they can become his eternal children. He himself will lead them in the way of submission to the universal sovereignty of his own heavenly Father, Jehovah God. After the accomplishment of his work of uplifting obedient mankind to human perfection in an earthly paradise, he himself will express his own subjection to the sovereignty of his God by turning over the kingdom to him. Why? “That God may be all things to everyone.”—1 Corinthians 15:24-28.
52. What exhortation is there for those who have become disillusioned by the disastrous division caused by national sovereignties?
52 All these wonderful things being so, then take courage, all you who have become frustrated and disillusioned by the disastrous division of the world, by conflicting national sovereignties independent of divine sovereignty! Take firm hold, now, of the glorious hope of “one world, one government, under God’s sovereignty”! Live for it from now on till its blessed realization.
a The American Declaration of Independence, which was passed by the Continental Congress at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on July 4, 1776, stated in its second paragraph: “. . . That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.”
b See the Encyclopedia Americana, Volume 25, page 317, 1959 edition.
c Since the end of World War I on November 11, 1918. new republics and democratic governments have been established, to the number of over 60 at this writing.