Why did the Apostles tell everyone the end was near over 2000 years ago? Do you believe Christ’s return is nearer today? James 5:8 states, “You also be patient, establish (strengthen) your hearts, for the coming of your Lord draws near.” Even the Apostle John said in his first letter that we are in the last hour (1John 2:18). Jesus said in Revelations 22:12, “Behold, I am coming soon, bringing my recompense (reward) with me, to repay each one for what he has done.” The writer of Hebrews, who they think is the Apostle Luke said in Hebrews 1:2, “but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, ….” And the Apostle Peter said in 1Peter 4:7 (NIV), “The end of all things is near.” If the Apostles believed they were in the last days 2000 years ago, we are much closer to the end of the age. Are you waiting and ready?
What are the signs that Christ will soon come?
The Scriptures compare the end of times to Noah’s time and Sodom and Gomorrah because the people living in the world were ungodly and wicked. God wanted to destroy them because of their evil and unrepentant hearts. Noah warned the people of God’s judgment if they did not repent. You know the story of how Noah obeyed God and built an ark to prepare for the flood while the people mocked and ridiculed him. Matthew 24:39 states, “and they were unaware until the flood came and swept them all away, so will be the coming of the Son of Man.” Do your friends and neighbors know of the coming of Christ and the wrath of God on ungodly, sinful people? Have you warned them of the coming judgment and how they can be saved?
God rescued Lot and his family out of Sodom and Gomorrah before He destroyed it with fire and brimstone because they indulged in fleshly lusts. 2Peter 2:6 states, “if by turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah to ashes he condemned them to extinction, making them an example of what is going to happen to the ungodly; and if he rescued righteous Lot, greatly distressed by the sensual conduct of the wicked….” God will rescue the righteous before He executes His wrath on the ungodly. 1Thessalonians 5:9-10 states, “For God has not destined us for wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, who died for us so that whether we are awake or asleep we might live with him.”
Timothy wrote about the conduct of people in the last days. As you read this passage, think about the present time. Do they sound similar? 2Timothy 3:1-7,
But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty.
― For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy,
― heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good,
― treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God,
― having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power. Avoid such people.
― For among them are those who creep into households and capture weak women, burdened with sins and led astray by various passions,
― always learning and never able to arrive at a knowledge of the truth.
Does 2Timothy chapter three sound like our world, over 2000 years later? Jesus told his disciples the signs of the end of the age in Matthew 24:10-14. “And then many will fall away and betray one another and hate one another. And many false prophets will arise and lead many astray. And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold. But the one who endures to the end will be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.” Is your love cold toward God and the people of God? If it is, there is hope when you humbly turn to God in prayer.
Why hasn’t Jesus returned yet? Peter explains why Christ has delayed His coming in 2Peter 3:3-4, “knowing this first of all, that scoffers will come in the last days with scoffing, following their own sinful desires. They will say, ‘Where is the promise of his coming? For ever since the fathers fell asleep, all things are continuing as they were from the beginning of creation.’” Verses 8–9, “But do not overlook this one fact, beloved, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.”
Are you ready for Christ’s return? Have you repented of your sin? 2Corinthians 5:10 states, “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may receive what is due for what he has done in the body, whether good or evil.” Look at your life and pretend you are standing before the judgment seat of Christ. What will He say to you about how you are conducting your life while in the body? How does your life line up with this post: Living a Victorious Life.
To learn more about the end of time, read Matthew 24; Luke 17:22-37; 1Thessalonians 5:1-11; 2Thessalonians 2:1-12; and 2Peter 3.
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