Saturday, August 30, 2008

That Day

Eschatology, the word, sounds like a study of some culinary delicacy; for some reason it reminds me of escargot. The dictionary tells us eschatology is .."any system of doctrines concerning last or final matters, as death, the Second Coming or the Last Judgment"* What I apprehend of both escargot and eschatology is scant. About one, with all due respect to the French and their offerings to the realm of food, I have little desire to know more. On the other hand, as it pertains to the end of the world, I would like to educate myself, at least, in so far as it is possible.

I had a Bible teacher about whom I've spoken here, Mrs. Betty Williams who was the first to instruct me on the rapture, the sweeping up of the Church from earth. The very thought of it as an adolescent was enough to strike in me terrible internal fear. Internal, and temporal, not eternal. She showed us a lot of the places in scripture where the writer or the translation says : ...and on that day.... No matter the reference, her teaching was clear. "That Day" meant a specific date and a specific time- the date and time of the Lord's return. She made no bones about it. She did not pretend to know the day or the hour and explicitly taught it was error to presume that one could know.

I'm no pole sitter either, thanks to Betty and the Holy Spirit's instruction I make no claim to know the date of the return of Christ for his beloved bride. What I do know is this: every man or woman, group, denomination, sect or cult who has made the prediction of Christ's imminent return, has, to date, been wrong 100% of the time.

So, what are we to do? Stare at our navel... pray and cling to the hope Jesus' return will be in the third watch of the night? Hardly, I submit. Nay, we are to be fully alive for the sake of the Gospel, so on that day, when Christ returns we will either be among the dead in Christ or part of the body of believers alive at the time of His glorious appearing. My admonition: let us not concern ourselves with the calendar of days, nor become attached too closely to the wiles of this old world, but instead, long for Jesus return with such zeal that many along the road will be drawn to him for whom we pine.

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