The Bible’s answer
To know when the end of the world will happen, it is necessary to understand how the Bible uses the term “world.” The Greek word koʹsmos, usually translated “world,” most often refers to the world of humankind, especially the part that is out of harmony with God and his will. (John 15:18, 19; 2 Peter 2:5) At times, koʹsmos refers to the framework of human society.—1 Corinthians 7:31; 1 John 2:15, 16. *
What is “the end of the world”?
The phrase “the end of the world,” which appears in many Bible translations, can also be rendered as “the conclusion of the system of things,” or “the close of the age.” (Matthew 24:3; English Standard Version) It refers, not to the destruction of the earth or of all humanity, but to the end of the framework of human society.—1 John 2:17.
The Bible teaches that “evil men will be done away with” so that good people can enjoy life on earth. (Psalm 37:9-11) This destruction will happen at the “great tribulation,” which culminates in the war of Armageddon.—Matthew 24:21, 22; Revelation 16:14, 16.
When will the world end?
Jesus said: “Concerning that day and hour nobody knows, neither the angels of the heavens nor the Son, but only the Father.” (Matthew 24:36, 42) He added that the timing of the end would be unexpected, “at an hour that you do not think to be it.”—Matthew 24:44.
Even though we cannot know the exact day and hour, Jesus did provide a composite “sign,” or group of events, that would identify the time period leading up to the end of the world. (Matthew 24:3, 7-14) The Bible refers to this period as “the time of the end,” “the end times,” and “the last days.”—Daniel 12:4; God’s Word Bible; 2 Timothy 3:1-5.
Will there be anything left after the end of the world?
Yes. The earth will still be here, for the Bible says that “it will not be moved from its place forever and ever.” (Psalm 104:5) And the earth will be filled with people, just as the Bible promises: “The righteous will possess the earth, and they will live forever on it.” (Psalm 37:29) God will bring about the conditions that he originally purposed:
^ par. 1 The Greek word ai·onʹ is also translated in some Bibles as “world.” When rendered this way, ai·onʹ has a meaning similar to koʹsmos in that it refers to the framework of human society.