The end of the world is old news.
Today another doomsday prediction was proven false. Those 18 to 21 year olds who are coming of age in America right now will be able to tell their grandchildren they survived the great Mayan apocalypse. You know, the day when one of their ancient calendars ended so surely that meant impending doom for the rest of humanity. Yet, here we are! Look at us now! We have beaten the calendar!
It is like in my day when those of us coming of age at the turn of the century survived the "Y2K Crisis." You remember, we weren’t sure if we would survive the computers turning their numbers from 1900’s to 2000’s. Would the world be able to go on with all those zeroes? The end of the world panic sent many to stockpile weapons and canned goods and wait for the computer blue screen of death to spread like the bubonic plague. Yet, humanity endured! We showed those computers who was boss! Man over machines!
It seems like even Hollywood is getting over this end of the world hype. How many times can we act like our planet is going to be destroyed only to have Bruce Willis save it? And so, movies are taking it to the next level. This week I saw two previews back-to-back about heroes who would dare to explore the previously destroyed planet earth. That’s right we are going to send in the surest bets we have in Hollywood to save us post-apocalypse, Will Smith and Tom Cruise. Have no fear America! Our world will be destroyed, but we can still go to the movies and watch the aftermath!
These two movie previews stood out from our normal diet of interplanetary star travel and alien invasion. The end of the world is such an expected part of our pop culture that somehow zombie training is making sense to many. These days Call of Duty gamers are shooting down the undead first-person style. Our Angry Birds are going into Space and Star Wars. Even in our entertainment, it is like we know the planet will only be available for a limited time.
And yet, in all of our doomsday conspiracy theories and end of the world entertainments, we have failed to see the scariest thing humanity is going to face: God. God has promised he is going to judge us. He will judge both our planet and many individuals. He will use fire. It is a destruction no special effect could duplicate or IMAX screen could possibly portray. This may not be a pop culture phenomenon or a summer blockbuster movie, but it belongs in a category many have forgotten about: truth.
Like I said, the end of the world is old news. All you have to do is read the Bible and you will come across what Jesus taught about it. He said we will not know the day. There is no way to predict it or count down until it comes. Jesus said he is coming and he said it would be soon. Many scoff at this since it was around 2,000 years ago now but they miss his meaning. Soon means imminent. It means it could happen at any moment. When we least expect it, Jesus will come like a thief in the night.
The question is this: Are you ready?
Jesus says that when he returns many will mourn. They will know in that moment that they don’t know Jesus and that judgment has come upon them for their sins. It is a scary and sobering thought, not entertaining or humorous at all. It is the kind of thing Americans don’t like to think about, but there will come a day when we can’t keep pushing God out of our nation. He is coming to us!
For those who know Jesus, we need not fear. We believe he already came once to save us from our sins. He died in our place on the cross and faced God’s judgment on our behalf. We believe he rose again victorious over death so that we could have a new kind of life that lasts for eternity. We are ready to meet him when he returns and know he will welcome us to be with him. We look forward to the moment he comes to take us home. We call it the rapture. It will be the delight of our souls and the fulfillment of our joy, to see Jesus!
So, I’m going to spend my 2013, the year that wasn’t supposed to be, teaching people the old news of the end of the world. I will use a simple word that has summed up the Christian hope for centuries: Maranatha! It means “Come, O Lord!” It is the desire of every one of us Jesus has saved, to see our Savior! He has saved us from the end of the world before it happens. Jesus faced our judgment on the cross, so now we can face the coming judgment with confidence. We know he loves us and his perfect love casts out our fear.
Our mission is to tell as many people on our planet this good news. Yes, the world is going to end. The bad news is true. We cannot deny the fact that global apocalypse is on its way and no one can escape by themselves. But there is one who will rescue you from the wrath to come. He will save your soul so that even if you die tomorrow, you will still live with him. Put your faith in him now before it is too late and you see him coming on the clouds. Listen to the ancient cry of all the Jesus people as they say, "Maranatha!"
Spread the word.