In this so-called “missile age” in which we live today, one finds that the world seems to become smaller and smaller as the ease of communication becomes less difficult. Time no longer holds the same meaning which it did a hundred years ago. It is now possible to breakfast in London, lunch in New York, and dine in Los Angeles all in the same day, and the busy world hardly seems at all impressed, as the great wonders of God are to them only matter-of-fact daily happenings of the age.
So often we young people too forget that the wonders of the day are sent from God. We are so easily swept along with the rushing tide of the wicked and become complacent in our thoughts. Of course we know that all things are from God and of course we acknowledge that all things come from His hand, but how often do we feel day by day that assurance that we belong to Christ and Christ is God’s and therefore all things are ours? How often do we heed the signs of the times and recognize that Christ is coming on the clouds of heaven? Or do we often pass over as the world, with our matter-of-fact attitude and fail to diligently watch for all the possible signs of His coming?
Easily recognizable for the Christian are the signs which we read of in the Bible: Matthew 24:6-7 “And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places.” Never before has there been a time as ripe for the coming of the antichrist as today with all that wicked talk of amalgamation of the churches. Then too there are the signs of apostasy in high places. But there are other signs of the times that are not so easily recognizable or are easily passed over in this busy world.
One of these recognizable signs of the times has to do with the above mentioned aspect of communication. Today as never before in the world, communication is essential. People who cannot speak the same language cannot communicate with one another. The lack of communication between two nations can set off a nuclear war and thus cause the destruction of half of the people of the world. What can a nation hope to achieve politically within the own boundary limits of its citizens if those citizens are unable to communicate with one another? Needless to say, absolute chaos would result. How much more true then, is this when communication is lacking among members of the United Nations? The world can easily see that there can be no hope of uniting the nations unless there is a common ground of communication between people, nation, and race. Furthermore, how can the so-called Christian nations possibly hope to spread their religion of democracy to the heathen nations whose religion is communism?
So wicked man strives to maintain himself and freedom in the world. He looks for a way whereby all nations may unite, where the entire world may be one for the cause of freedom. To achieve that end man must learn to communicate with his fellowman. So the world for some three-quarters of a century has worked and strived to find some means whereby he can communicate—to build a tower that will reach to heaven as the Babel of old. The whole wicked world desires one language, one nation, one world, one man, and NO GOD. Wicked man with all his power works to develop his own wicked ends. In the January 11, 1965 issue of one of our national newspapers there was an article which dealt with this means to communicate. The article referred to “Esperanto,” the international language—“the language of hope.” Although for seventy-five years Esperanto has failed in its purpose to gain one world through communication, it is now believed that there may be a new breakthrough as Esperanto “looks like a natural for the jet age.” The article goes on to say that the proliferation of new nations, scientific knowledge, world trade and travel demand a language that is easy to learn, and yet has a rich and supple vocabulary. Language barriers are getting higher at the very time that the world’s business demands that they be lowered. Esperanto can supposedly be learned in about one-fourth the time it takes to learn any other language. Yet, the vocabulary of Esperanto is full. Shakespeare’s plays and Einstein’s theories have been translated into Esperanto. Esperanto is taught in the schools of thirty-two countries, from the United States to the U.S.S. R. International companies like Philips Electric of Holland and Fiat motors of Italy print their brochures in Esperanto. Communist China uses it in its propaganda broadcasts. The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) give financial support to the publication of so-called great works, such as Dante’s Divine Comedy, into Esperanto. Esperanto is one of the languages used in the official introductory guide to the New York World’s Fair.
Why is there all this new emphases on the creation of Esperanto as a world language? Simply because wicked man, like wicked man through the ages wants himself to be the all powerful creature. He wants to forget that there is a God and he wants one great glorious happy world where he and his children may forever do as they please.
Oh, but the world forgets that story of Babel. They forget that God’s hand deferred the completion of that tower. It forgets that all of its power comes from God alone. The world will not acknowledge that Christ is coming again. The wicked hate God and also hate His people. Thus they think they will be able to create a world of one communication.
We as Christians, by God’s grace, can discern these signs of the times. We prayerfully ask that God may show us through His Spirit what He would have us do that all glory may be His.
But there is more than merely discerning a sign from the world’s desire to be one in language. We do not place value in communications of the heathen or in any communications which lack speaking of God’s glory and honor. Thus, the one world language which the world so hopes to achieve is all in vain. How can there be any true speaking apart from that what one Christian achieves with another? The fellowship of Christian believers is the only true fellowship or communication. In all our walk of life we are called to take heed and depart from all language which is not of God. Only with other people of God can we have true language fellowship. We know then that we have nothing in common with those who are not God’s children and who speak not the language of the truth of God. We do not feel at home with the wicked who defame our Father’s name, as our conversation is not and cannot be one in Christ Jesus.
Thus in all our conversation may we so conduct ourselves that others may see in us that we are not one with the world but that our communication is with those things that are of the heavenly. May God give us the grace to discern the signs of the times and to walk according to His love and Spirit, to conduct ourselves in heavenly conversation.
A talebearer revealeth secrets: but he that is of a faithful spirit concealeth the matter.
We are saved by grace only, without the work or cooperation of man, or we are not saved at all.
Rev. H. Hoeksema
The Wonder of Grace