Stay Alert to the Signs
He who testifies to these things says, “Yes, I am coming soon.” Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.
In the pages of the Bible, God has given us “signs of the times,” we just have to look for them. And these signs are telling us that Jesus Christ is coming again – soon.
What are some of these signs of the times?
The re-gathering of the nation Israel to its ancient homeland is a gigantic and unmistakable sign of His soon-coming. Linked closely to that important divine indicator is the Bible’s warning that after the Jewish people have re-gathered in their homeland, their enemies will threaten to destroy them.
Anyone who follows the news, of course, will immediately think of Iran’s ongoing threats to “wipe Israel off the map.”
We can look around the world on any given day and watch as events unfold just as the Bible predicted they would in “the last days.” What kinds of events? Things like global turmoil, an increase in earthquakes, tsunamis, the crash of the stock market, rapid changes in the global economy, the fading of the United States of America as the economic superpower, the rise of a united Europe, the move toward a one-world currency and now a global pandemic. These could all be signs of the end – but when, no one knows.
Signs of the times. Jesus told us that we are to be aware of the times and the seasons. In other words, to stay alert and keep our eyes open.
Believe With Your Heart
Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when Christ appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. All who have this hope in him purify themselves, just as he is pure. Everyone who sins breaks the law; in fact, sin is lawlessness. But you know that he appeared so that he might take away our sins. And in him is no sin.
1 John 3:2-5
It’s one thing for people to be interested in or even study Bible prophecy in an intellectual way, trying to decipher names and places and events like some complex puzzle. However, I think we need to approach this very significant subject with not only our minds, but also with our hearts.
By that I mean we don’t want to merely consider these things in an abstract academic way, but rather that we must allow God to move our hearts and change our behaviour because of what we read. Someone has said that the Bible wasn’t only written for our information or even our inspiration, but for our transformation.
When we read about the workings of God and the great events just over the horison, it ought to stir us, creating a sense of awe in our hearts. If we really understand what the Bible is saying about the imminent return of Jesus, it should cause us to want to live a more godly life.
God wants us to know and understand that He keeps His Word. Just as surely as He kept His Word with prophesies that foretold the arrival of the Messiah in Bethlehem, He wants us to know He will keep His Word about the prophesies pertaining to the return of the Messiah.
Be Ready to Go
It will be good for those servants whose master finds them watching when he comes. Truly I tell you, he will dress himself to serve, will have them recline at the table and will come and wait on them. It will be good for those servants whose master finds them ready, even if he comes in the middle of the night or toward daybreak. But 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.”
When I go on a holiday, I always pack my bag the night before so I can be ready. That’s the idea, here. That we, in a sense, should have our bags packed, and sitting close to the door in easy reach. Why? Because we could leave this world at any moment.
So here is a question we ought to ask ourselves periodically. When we are about to go to a certain place or do a certain thing, would we be embarrassed if Jesus came back when we are right in the middle of what we doing? If the answer to that question is yes, then it would be best for us to refrain from doing that activity or going to that place. The truth is, we can study Bible prophesy all day long and can get excited about it, but if it isn’t impacting us in the way that we live, then we’re simply missing the point.
Stay ready. Stay steady. That doesn’t mean that we are standing around on street corners staring up into the sky like a bunch of idiots. But what it does mean is that we hold onto the awareness that Christ could return at any time. And living in the light of Christ’s imminent return should make a difference in our behaviour.
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