The Road Ahead

For those of us who have been around for a long time, we remember the talk in the late 60’s about God’s Church fleeing to a place of safety in 1972, then in about 1985; and more recently, 2017 was proposed as the year of Christ’s return, allegedly following an imagined “seven year contract” between the “beast” and other nations and 3 ½ years of Great Tribulation. None of that has been remotely accurate. Then there were other dates proposed, but in each case the score has been zero for accuracy. The reason is, no human being knows the date of Christ’s return, and it is rather foolish to draft up charts and speculations about the time, since in Christ’s own words, not even He knows the exact date, but only the Father knows, as He will decide as to when He will send Christ back to this earth.

Mark 13:32 quotes Christ as follows: “But of that day and that hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.”

So if one wants to pursue futility and engage in a waste of time, then one can try to “figure it out.” But what is really important to God is to come out of the world, by God’s mercy, and if we endure to the end, we will be saved and enter God’s Kingdom. Matthew 10:22 tells us:  “And you will be hated of all for My name’s sake. But he who endures to the end will be saved.”

All of us are getting older, but we must push on and finish the job we have been given. The Church has not yet finished its commission to preach the gospel to the world as a witness, but the time will come when sufficient testimony will have been given to the last generation, and God promises He will take care of those who faithfully carry out the task at hand. We must not neglect our spiritual growth in the process, but coupled with our God-given responsibility to preach the gospel, we become, as it were, the “complete” man.

What lies ahead, prior to Christ’s return? Will we live in a better, peaceful world? Not according to the Word of God. Instead, we can expect more problems, more wars, terrorist attacks and a general deterioration of the moral fiber of America, Canada, the UK and all nations around the world.  Some of us may not be around in a few years from now and there will be new faces in the Church to pick up the challenges, but the work  must and will go on. Otherwise, Christ could not return, but He will, as He is the ultimate solution to all the problems in the world. He must return to save mankind from itself.

Matthew 24:22 gives us this frightening prophecy, and at the same time, this reassuring promise:  “And unless those days were shortened, no flesh would be saved, but for the elect’s sake those days will be shortened.”

Will we face problems and challenges? The answer is yes, but when the going gets tough, the tough get going. That is not to say that we should get calloused about our job; rather, we have to do it zealously, knowing that it is for the ultimate good of mankind.

The category we want to be in when Christ does return is framed in Mathew 25:21:  “His lord said unto him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.'”

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