Hebrews 2:5 – 8 — “For unto the angels hath He not put in subjection the world to come, whereof we speak. But one in a certain place testified, saying, What is man, that thou art mindful of him? or the son of man, that thou visitest him? Thou madest him a little lower than the angels; thou crownedst him with glory and honour, and didst set him over the works of thy hands: Thou hast put all things in subjection under his feet. For in that He put all in subjection under him, He left nothing that is not put under him. But now we see not yet all things put under him.”
The world to come here, is the future that God has in store for this world. There is “this present evil world” that the apostle Paul speaks of regarding this time (Galatians 1:4), and a “world to come”.
The Lord Jesus spoke of “the end of the world” on a number of occasions. In Matthew 13, He spoke of a coming harvest at the end of the world:
Matthew 13:37 – 43 — “He answered and said unto them, He that soweth the good seed is the Son of man; The field is the world; the good seed are the children of the kingdom; but the tares are the children of the wicked one; The enemy that sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the end of the world; and the reapers are the angels. As therefore the tares are gathered and burned in the fire; so shall it be in the end of this world. The Son of man shall send forth His angels, and they shall gather out of His kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity; And shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth. Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Who hath ears to hear, let him hear.”
Matthew 47 – 50 — “Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a net, that was cast into the sea, and gathered of every kind: Which, when it was full, they drew to shore, and sat down, and gathered the good into vessels, but cast the bad away. So shall it be at the end of the world: the angels shall come forth, and sever the wicked from among the just, And shall cast them into the furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth.”
The “end of the world” that the Lord is speaking of here is the end of this present evil world. It is this world’s ways, and character, and time. Yes, this time we live in now belongs to this world, and it is a present evil world. It is a world ruled by a god, but not by the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. The “god of this world” is presently blinding those that do not believe in our Lord Jesus to the glorious gospel of Him, and they cannot see the most glorious light that exists:
2 Corinthians 4:3 – 6 — “But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, Who is the image of God, should shine unto them. For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus’ sake. For God, Who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.”
Yes, the light of the knowledge of the glory of God is in the face of our Lord Jesus, but the unbelieving cannot see it, for “the god of this world” has blinded them, and they want it this way. But just as the apostle spoke about Israel, that “when it shall turn to the Lord, the vail shall be taken away” (2 Corinthians 3:16), so all the unsaved, when they turn to the Lord in belief in the gospel of Christ, the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believes (Romans 1:16), those who are blind will see. The “god of this world” has no ability to keep them in blindness any longer. He Who made the blind to see opens their eyes to the truth to which they formerly were blinded.
The Lord’s disciples asked Him about the sign of His coming, and the end of the world. Does it seem strange that they asked about His coming, when He was right there in front of them? Well, this “coming” that they were asking about is the coming of the King in glory. This is the coming of the Son of Man, as Daniel spoke:
Daniel 7:13 – 14 — “I saw in the night visions, and, behold, one like the Son of man came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days, and they brought him near before him. And there was given him dominion, and glory, and a kingdom, that all people, nations, and languages, should serve him: his dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom that which shall not be destroyed.”
This is the coming of the Son of Man “in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory” (Matthew 24:30), and that will be how this present evil world will come to its end. When this world meets its end, and the “Son of Man shall come in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him, then shall He sit on the throne of His glory” (Matthew 25:31). Then, this present evil world will be, not under the subjection of angels, but under the subjection of the Son of Man. While Adam was created to have dominion over the earth, but fell from his place, the Second Man, the Last Adam, the Lord from Heaven, will place the world under His subjection — as the Son of Man.
If we look to see this dominion of man now, however, we are very disappointed; and rightfully so. Man was created to rule the earth, to be set over the work of God’s hands, yet, by rebellion, is in the place of God’s enemy, not His agent. And as the enemy of God, he does not have subjection, for now he toils and sweats and fights an uphill battle to survive, until, at last, he returns to the earth from which he was made. He does not have rule over the earth, but the earth covers him. How sad!
But the Second Man has by His death cleared the way for the world to come to be put under subjection of man. The Son of Man will rule in glory and in righteousness. The “world to come” will be a “new world order” governmentally. The word used for world¹ in this phrase “world to come” has a governmental sense, actually, a sense of empire. This empire to come will have a greatness that none of the kingdoms of this world can even compare. He will judge the current world empires in righteousness. Now, our God is “calling all men everywhere to repent², because He hath appointed a day when He will judge the world [empire] in righteousness by that Man Whom He hath ordained; whereof He hath given assurance unto all men, in that He hath raised Him from the dead” (Acts 17:30 – 31).
Have you heeded God’s call during this dispensation of the grace of God, where He has made Christ, Who knew no sin, to be sin for us, that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him? Christ died for our sins, and by His death, we can be given eternal life in Him. He is able to save to the uttermost all who come to God by Him! Christ will save you when you place your faith in Him.
Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved.
- The word is οἰκουμένη — oikouménē — the word used in Luke 2:1 for the world that Caesar Augustus sent a decree to tax.
- See the article On Repentance .