What to Expect in 2020

Posted on December 30, 2019


By David Ettinger

The Background
With a new year upon us, it is time for prognosticators to forecast what the next 366 days hold  in store. I am not a prophet, and what I have to share is by no means earth-shaking, but what I offer is a bit of speculation based on perhaps the most recognized portion of prophecy in the Bible: Jesus’ Olivet Discourse.

This extraordinary look at the end-times preached by our Lord gets its name from the location in which He delivered His revelation, the Mount of Olives. In Matthew 24:1, Jesus had made some rather dire predictions regarding the future of the Temple, and by extension the city of Jerusalem, and all of Israel. This prompted the Lord’s disciples to ask: “Tell us, when will these things happen, and what will be the sign of Your coming, and of the end of the age?” (Matthew 24:3).

It is here that Jesus spends the next 48 verses speaking about the final seven years of this era of human history. (I will link below to other prophecy posts I have written.)

The Time Frame
I want to be very careful here. I am not saying that we are in the final seven years of this era of history. Rather, I believe we are fast approaching that climactic time, and that the events of the first four seals of the Book of Revelation will soon be upon us. (Matthew 24:4-8 parallels Revelation 6:1-8, and is referred to by Jesus as “the beginning of birth pangs,” 24:8. These “beginning birth pangs” represent the human-produced atrocities of the Last Days, before God pours out His wrath on sinful humanity.)

Therefore, when forecasting what 2020 holds for us, it makes sense to look at what will occur during the “beginning birth pangs” Jesus foretold, and see everything from now on as a lead-up to those specific events. So, as you can see, there is nothing profound here on my part, just a reasonable presumption on the path we are on.

What to Expect
1. In Matthew 24:4-5, Jesus says: “See to it that no one misleads you. For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and will mislead many.”

As we draw nearer to the end of the age, we will see more charlatans claiming to be either Jesus Himself, or some kind of Messiah who can solve the world’s problems. As we advance through the 2020s, don’t be surprised by the rising number of false prophets.

2. In Matthew 24:6, Jesus says: “You will be hearing of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not frightened, for those things must take place, but that is not yet the end.”

Expect to see an increase in hostilities throughout the world, with wars – not necessarily big ones – cropping up at an ever-increasing pace. And where war hasn’t erupted, expect news outlets to be filled with reports of “rumored” wars – confrontations on the brink of breaking out, whether they do or not.

3. In the same vein, Jesus tells us in Matthew 24:7a: “For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom …”

This speaks of all-out warfare. The term “kingdom against kingdom” most likely refers to coalitions of nations against coalitions of nations. Over the next year and decade, look for more and more countries to align themselves with other countries, knowing that might is best increased in numbers. This will be particularly played out in the volatile Middle East.

4. In Matthew 24:7b, Jesus says: “… and in various places there will be famines and earthquakes.”

These have always plagued the earth, but in the coming years they will multiply in both number of incidents and degree of severity. Leading up to the final seven years of human history, famine will spread throughout the globe resulting in greater sickness and death.

Environmentally, the earth will seemingly rebel against its mistreatment by the human race as natural catastrophes – earthquakes among them – will become more prevalent, and, in the spirit of the passage, more deadly.

“Bonus” Prophecy
In Matthew 24:9, Jesus says: “Then they will deliver you to tribulation, and will kill you, and you will be hated by all nations because of My name.”

The “they” here is the world as ordered by Satan, and the “you” is believers in the Lord Jesus Christ. In that climactic time of human history persecution of God’s people (the Jewish people included) will rise to levels never before seen. Christians will be hated and killed in huge numbers, and the groundwork leading up to that time is now being laid. Expect hatred of Christians and Jews to escalate over the coming decade as the headlines will be saturated with multiple incidents of persecution.

My Apologies
A double-apology here. First, I apologize for being such a buzzkill as the New Year approaches. And second, some of you were probably expecting political prognostications and the like here, but I have nothing biblical to base such predictions on. Rather, I end with the Lord’s words in Mark 13:37: “What I say to you I say to all, ‘Be on the alert!’”

Other Prophecy Posts
“The Backbone of Prophecy”

“The Next Major Event On the Prophetic Timeclock”

“Will Jesus Really Come at Any Time?”

“The Year God’s End-Times Clock Began Ticking”

“What You Need to Know About the Antichrist”

“A Quick Look at the Rapture”

“Wrongly Interpreting ‘A Thief in the Night’”

“A Brief Look at the ‘Day of the Lord’”