I Believe That The World Will End
How is your eschatology doing? You may be thinking, eska-what? I dont have one of those. It is likely that you do possess an opinion about last things, having done some reading.We know that the Mayan calendar is coming to an end soon and popular culture is gearing up to mock the end of the world. It is easy to be smug towards the apocalypse; who has ever seen it? This staple of Hollywood is make believe to many but what do you make of the end of time?
This is a picture of Harold Camping who predicted that the world would end on May 16th, 2011. He was wrong and he was made fun of. Harold is in good company. A great number of modern day prophets have predicted that we would witness the end of the world. All of them have been wrong so far. These men and women often rely on an exceptional interpretation of Biblical prophesy to predict the end. Their theology is a hot mess but becomes connected to Christianity is the mind of the public. The church becomes mocked for its belief in the second coming of Christ and the destruction of the world. If you are like me then you are critical of Mayan calendars and their apocalyptic advocates. You may laugh with the rest of the world but know this: the world laughs at Christians and Mayan Calendars alike.
The Church has always affirmed the return of Christ and final judgement of the living and the dead. You can read it yourself in the Apostles Creed, the writing of Irenaeus, Hippolytus' Account of Baptism, The Symbolum Nicaenum, Nicene Crede, The Confession of St. Patrick, Athanasian Creed and so on. This belief comes from a literal reading of the book of Revelation. Christians believe in the Bible. That is Jesus-following 101. How should we interpret the things we read about in Revelation?
- We believe that John received a vision of future things (Revelation 1:1).
- We believe that Jesus is coming back (Revelation 19:11).
- We believe that the devil will be destroyed (Revelation 20:10).
- We believe that everyone will be judged (Revelation 20:11).
- We believe that there will be a new heaven and earth (Revelation 21:1).
- We believe that we will reign over this new kingdom with the Lord forever (Revelation 22:5).
You may have noticed that there is a big chunk of highlights missing from Chapters 2-18 of Revelation. I'll bo honest: that part of the Bible is crazy. I dont know what to make of a lot of it. Some people believe that John was having trouble finding the right words to describe what he saw. Other people characterize prophetic literature as being intentionally masked in ambiguity. There are others who make a literal interpretation of John's prophesy word for word.
What do you believe about the end of time? Crack open your Bible and flip to the back. Do not concern yourselves with the predictions of others. Christ is clear that no one knows the day or hour of the Lord return. However, we are instructed to live our lives in the light of His eminent return. Jesus tells us, "Behold, I am coming soon! My reward is with me, and I will give to everyone according to what he has done (Rev. 22:12)."
What do you think about the end times? How is your eschatology?