I guess I’ve had my head under a rock and haven’t heard, but obviously the Lord is supposed to return on Saturday. Well, that is if you believe everything you read on the internet. A pastor friend of mine put a post on Facebook this morning about a web site proclaiming that the coming of the Lord was May 21, 2011. This obviously has a lot of people upset and worried because they believe this “prophecy”. So, I thought I would take a minute and address this subject of the Lord’s return. There are certain things that we know about the Lord’s return and certain things that cannot know.
Here is what I know:
The Lord’s return is imminent. This means that Lord could return at any time. When the apostle Paul wrote to the troubled Thessolonian church about their loved ones who had passed away he made this statement, “then WE which are ALIVE and REMAIN shall not prevent them which sleep.” (Emphasis on words is mine.) These people were worried about their loved ones who had died before the rapture of the church. They were afraid that their dead family members would not be part of the rapture. Paul assured them that those who were alive would not be the only ones to go in the rapture. It is obvious that Paul believed that he would be one of those who were alive when Jesus returned. There was nothing preventing the return of the Lord in Paul’s day, and there is nothing preventing Him from returning today. I believe the next great event on God’s schedule is the rapture of the church.
There are no signs related regarding the return of the Lord. There is nothing that has to be fulfilled before Jesus can come back. Some have misunderstood signs concerning the second coming of Christ in His revelation with signs concerning the rapture of the church. These are two separate events and will happen at least seven years apart. There are signs about the revelation, but not the rapture. (A good example of this is Matthew 24.)
We should be ready. The Lord could come back Saturday, but he could just as easily come back today. Jesus goes as far as to tell us that “no man, nor the angels in heaven, nor the Son” knows the hour in which this will take place. Because of this we must be ready. Do not be one of those that will say “peace and safety” and then “sudden destruction” comes upon you. (1 Thessalonians 5:3)
Here is what we do not know.
We do not know the day when the Lord will return. The gospel of Matthew promises that it will be a time in which we are not expecting. No one knows when Jesus will come. There is no secret bible formula you can use to understand something that God promised you would not be able to understand.
We do not know the truth about history. The fact is that our world went through many years of darkness. During the days of the scriptures God would use godly men to keep track of days and seasons. After the bible was finished most of this work was placed into the hands of ungodly men. During this time calendars were changed, dates were not kept accurately and it is widely believed that the date we use today could be many years away from accurate. So, how can you calculate accurately when you don’t have accurate information to calculate with? You can’t!
To sum this up let me say that I’m not worried about the Lord returning Saturday. Could He come Saturday? Sure, but not because there is a secret formula that says He will. If He does come I’m ready.
People use the Mayan calendar to predict that the earth will come to an end in December 2012. I remember being in high school and hearing people predict that the Lord would return in 1993. Obviously there was a man who made a lot of money predicting the Lord would return in 1988, then again in 1989. We all remember the paranoia over the year 2000. (Remember how the Lord was going to return, banks would collapse, computers would crash, and everyone needed to stock up food and water?)
The point I’m trying to make is that you don’t know, and you cannot know. All you can do is be ready. What if today is the day the Lord returns? Are you ready to meet Him? We may have many more years. We may have mere moments. Whatever amount of time we have left should be used to for the glory of the Lord. Don’t be fooled by false prophecies, but at the same time be ready.
“But of the times and seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you. For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night. For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape. But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief. Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness. Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober. For they that sleep sleep in the night; and they that be drunken are drunken in the night. But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation. For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ, Who died for us, that, whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with him. Wherefore comfort yourselves together, and edify one another, even as also ye do.” 1 Thessalonians 5:1-11