Seth Udinski, FISM News
This is why you also are to be ready, because the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect. -Matthew 24:44
In the last year, we have seen numerous destructive events in the world. Plagues, storms, wicked men overtaking nations, and riots across numerous cities have become far too commonplace in the year 2021.
Believers of every age have asked the question: “When is the Lord Jesus returning?” Indeed, our final hope (and, dare I say, our only hope when all else fails) rests in the glorious final victory of Jesus, prophesied in the book of Revelation. Many have tried to predict the day of the Lord’s return, but none of us knows the day or the hour.
We would be wise to take a moment and to observe what is happening all around us; to “be mindful of the times.” We know from the testimony of Scripture some of the events that are described as the “birth pangs” to the fulfillment of prophecy. According to Matthew 24 these will include wars and rumors of war, nation rising against nation, and an increase in the frequency and intensity of natural disasters.
Based on these descriptions and our news feeds, as scary as it may be to ponder, it appears that we are living in the last days and that Christ is coming soon. Regardless of your stance on the millennium, the tribulation, or the return of Christ, we cannot argue the nature of what is happening around us.
Therefore, what must we do? Let me encourage you in several practical ways as we observe catastrophes happening all around us.
First, be ready. The Lord is coming soon. If you have trusted in Christ as your Lord, you possess the ultimate assurance and are ready for the Lord’s return. But what about your family members? What about your coworkers? What about those who do not know Christ and are on their way to eternity in hell unless they repent and believe on the name of the Lord Jesus Christ? Readiness for the Lord’s return is not just a personal readiness. It is also a resolution to share the Good News with as many as you can, trusting that God is the one who saves, and being confident that He will use you as His instrument to save those for whom Christ died.
Second, do not stand by and watch. The Lord works His sovereign plan in and through His people, not devoid of his people. Do you not want to be found a good and faithful servant? Join in the fight to share the gospel. Love the least of these and stand for the truth, as Daniel and his friends did, as the Apostles did, and as the Lord Jesus exemplified for us in His perfect life and death. Yes, we must pray, and we must trust in the sovereign plan of God. We also must act in obedience, trusting that God will work His plan through our obedience.
Third, take courage. The greatest anchor for your soul is this – Christ is victorious. The battle was won at Calvary, and if you belong to Christ, the victory is yours. Therefore, you can walk in obedience in confidence. You can share the gospel without fear of rejection or cruel words, because the victory is in Christ. You can love the least of these even if you do not get anything back for it, because the victory is in Christ. You can face persecution of all kinds (and make no mistake, it will come because Christ said it would in John 15) because your victory is secure in Christ.
As we observe the chaos around us, let us join with John the Apostle in the words he wrote, by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, at the end of the Bible in Revelation 22:
Amen! Come Lord Jesus!