A cartoon character wore a sandwich board which read “The End is Near!” Across from him was another sandwich board wearer whose sign read “The End is Far!” They glared at each other and shared a single accusing word bubble that read “Whacko!”
The subject of end times abounds with opinion. Some discount the notion altogether believing science will eventually propel humankind to godhood. Some believe aliens will rescue us from global destruction, or be the agents of it. Others believe in the return of Christ but say it has already happened… or spiritualize the idea. Some even claim that they are He!
All this chaos is no surprise to Christ, and should be no surprise to His children either. Every bit of it was foretold long ago: from the deterioration of moral conscience to the multiplicity of false Christs and the scoffing at His true return…
There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— having a form of godliness but denying its power. (2 Tim. 3:1-5)
For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths. (2 Tim. 4:3-4)
Jesus answered: “Watch out that no one deceives you. For many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am the Messiah,’ and will deceive many…many false prophets will appear and deceive many people. Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold… At that time if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Messiah!’ or, ‘There he is!’ do not believe it. For false messiahs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect. See, I have told you ahead of time. So if anyone tells you, ‘There he is, out in the wilderness,’ do not go out; or, ‘Here he is, in the inner rooms,’ do not believe it. For as lightning that comes from the east is visible even in the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man.” (see Matthew 24).
Above all, you must understand that in the last days scoffers will come, scoffing and following their own evil desires. They will say, “Where is this ‘coming’ he promised? Ever since our ancestors died, everything goes on as it has since the beginning of creation.” (2 Pet. 3:3-4)
In Matthew 24:8 scripture speaks of these things coming upon this earth as ‘labor pains.’ Labor pains have all the elements of birth and grow in frequency and in intensity as the birth nears. The nervous husband sees all the signs, even races her to the hospital and discovers multiple false alarms. But the bags are ready, there is gas in the car, for they know one of these times will be the true birth indeed. That outcome is assured.
This is the believer’s only job as well, to be ready at all times…
“Be dressed ready for service and keep your lamps burning, like servants waiting for their master to return from a wedding banquet, so that when he comes and knocks they can immediately open the door for him… understand this: If the owner of the house had known at what hour the thief was coming, he would not have let his house be broken into. You also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him.” (Luke 12:35-40)
Are you ready?
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