Bulletin Articles

Bulletin Articles

Are We Ready?

We do not know when the Lord will come again. However, let's just say, for the sake of argument, that tomorrow is the end. He is coming. Will we be ready if it is? Are you ready to meet the Lord?

I give no credibility to those who misuse Scripture to predict the Lord’s return or the end of the world. That has been tried and failed so many times, and for some reason someone else thinks it can still be done. When that fails, others will work “magic” on their formula and think they are the ones who have it right. This time, they got it. Until they don’t. I remember the little pamphlet I had years ago called, “88 Reasons Why the Rapture will Be in 1988.” 1988 came and went, and … do we need to call out the obvious? This is nothing but a token that shows the folly of such efforts. Yet, just as surely as the sun rises, someone else will try it again. And fail.

Even with all the error that is propagated concerning the coming of Jesus, one day will indeed be the last, and, yes, it could be any time. We simply do not know. If predictions were given for every date possible, someone would finally, by sheer chance, get it right. But we really need not try to do that when we prepare ourselves every day.

“For this we declare to you by a word from the Lord, that we who are alive, who are left until the coming of the Lord, will not precede those who have fallen asleep. For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first” (1 Thess 4:15-16).

“For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may receive what is due for what he has done in the body, whether good or evil” (2 Cor 5:10).

God has fixed a day in which He will judge the world (Acts 17:30-31). Will we be ready?

The Lord will come again. However, the emphasis in Scripture is not on when that is going to happen, but rather on the effects that knowing the Lord will come again should have on us in our lives. In other words, this is not just some theological issue to be debated, but is practical to the core. It helps us answer a very singular question: how should we live our lives? Listen to Peter:

“Since all these things are thus to be dissolved, what sort of people ought you to be in lives of holiness and godliness, waiting for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be set on fire and dissolved, and the heavenly bodies will melt as they burn! But according to his promise we are waiting for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells” (2 Pet 3:11-13).

Are we watching? Are we hastening the coming of that day? What sort of people ought we to be? How should this knowledge affect our lives?

There is no need to be a star watcher. There is no particular holiness to be found in trying to figure out signs in the heavens. It’s not like we should feel free to act any way we want to, then suddenly get holy when we think the signs are pointing to the end. That would be presumptuous. Rather, we should be ready all the time. Anytime. Every day. Though we never see another star or eclipse, standing ready to go should be our constant status before the Lord.

Even if it’s not the end of the world or the return of Jesus, we are assured of another day—that day in which we personally depart. It is, after all, appointed for man to die once (Heb. 9:27). There is a time to be born and a time to die. When will that time come? God knows. I don’t. I do know that every day is closer than the last. Yet the effect of that knowledge should be the same. Are we ready? Are we watching?

“For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age, waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works” (Titus 2:11-14).

Sad, indeed, is the fact that many abuse Scripture to make false predictions. Sadder still is the fact that many will not be ready to meet their Maker regardless of the circumstances (the Lord’s coming or death).

Let us live in such a way that we can say, with John, “Come, Lord Jesus” (Rev 22:20).