A MOMENT OF SPIRITUAL REFLECTION: HAVE YOU EVER MEDITATED ABOUT THE END?
Part Two:“For the secret power of lawlessness is already at work; but the one who now holds it back will continue to do so till he is taken out of the way. And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord Jesus will overthrow with the breath of his mouth and destroy by the splendor of his coming.” (2 Thessalonians 2:7-8)
The End is here!!!-Part 2
I am getting to understand better and better the Biblical teaching about the last things than I did when I taught the book of Revelation ten years ago. This time I am searching the Scriptures to find what different books of the Bible say about the end. Let me ask you a very simple question. If you die today, where will you go? Even if you have no answer you got it right because your answer will not change the eternal divine plan of our individual destiny. A biblical cosmos, an ideal King, and a personal eschatology is inevitable to everyone. Both Christians and non-Christians must anticipate the last things whether they are going to heaven or hell. By this I mean that whether consciously or unconsciously, believing or scornful, rulers or subjects, rich or poor, elite or foolish, whatever tribe or race. We are all waiting for historical event that move us toward the consummation of world history, a divine intervention, and the ultimate separation of those belonging to Christ from those belonging to the devil.
The Scriptures states very clearly about God’s judgement of unbelievers and the salvation of the righteous. This will be accomplished by the personal coming of God Himself. Prophets Isaiah, Zechariah and Malachi spoke about it. Isaiah said, “See, the LORD is coming out of his dwelling to punish the people of the earth for their sins. The earth will disclose the blood shed on it; the earth will conceal its slain no longer.” (Isaiah 26:21 NIV). Prophet Zechariah spoke about the Lord’s coming literally saying, “ On that day his feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, east of Jerusalem, and the Mount of Olives will be split in two from east to west, forming a great valley, with half of the mountain moving north and half moving south. You will flee by my mountain valley, for it will extend to Azel. You will flee as you fled from the earthquake in the days of Uzziah king of Judah. Then the Lord my God will come, and all the holy ones with him.” (Zechariah14:4-5 NIV). Prophet Malachi spoke about two phases of Christ coming which can be confused with one phase. First he speak about the first coming of the messiah who the Jews were highly expecting to come and deliver them especially during the time of the Roman occupation if the promised land. God spoke through Malachi about John the Baptist coming to prepare for his coming. “I will send my messenger, who will prepare the way before me. Then suddenly the Lord you are seeking will come to his temple; the messenger of the covenant, whom you desire, will come,” says the Lord Almighty.” (Malachi 3:1).
The second phase of Malachi prophecy is actually what Isaiah had also prophesied. This is the second coming which is associated with the ‘Day of the Lord.’ The Bible speaks about the day of the Lord as a day of the Judgement (Amos 5:18-21; Ezekiel 30), and the Day of Second Advent of Jesus Christ. Peter says, “But the day of the Lord will come like a thief. The heavens will disappear with a roar; the elements will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and everything done in it will be laid bare.” (2 peter 3:10). Therefore, Malachi spoke about the time when Jesus will come for the second time as a judge not as a lowly messiah riding on a colt. Listen to what he says, “But who can endure the day of his coming? Who can stand when he appears? For he will be like a refiner’s fire or a launderer’s soap. He will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver; he will purify the Levites and refine them like gold and silver. Then the Lord will have men who will bring offerings in righteousness, and the offerings of Judah and Jerusalem will be acceptable to the Lord, as in days gone by, as in former years. “So I will come to put you on trial. I will be quick to testify against, sorcerers adulterers and perjurers, against those who defraud laborers of their wages, who oppress the widows and the fatherless, and deprive the foreigners among you of justice, but do not fear me,” says the Lord Almighty.” Malachi 5:2-5 NIV). During the day of the Lord when Jesus comes for a second time, the guilty will find no place to hide. Jesus himself said, “”So do not be afraid of them, for there is nothing concealed that will not be disclosed, or hidden that will not be made known.” (Matthew 10:26).
Therefore, instead of trying to hide shameful thoughts and behavior from God, confess them to Him and receive his forgiveness and eternal salvation before his Second Advent. Know that only God’s redeemed will be exempted from his judgement. In this time of confusion during his second coming, he clearly knows who his people are.
In the OT, the central theme of the Jewish prophets was that the Messiah would come and fulfil the Patriarchal promises. In those promises made to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob (later named Israel), Israel is to be the leading nation of the world under the rule of the Messiah (Jesu Christ) who would bring Universal peace, prosperity, and harmony among the people of the earth. This expectation was anticipated by many Bible scholars during the 1st and 2nd world war bit it failed. Many were discouraged by the fact in the midst such global turmoil and at the time when 6 million Jews were killed by Hitler, the Lord did not intervene. But they overlooked that during Christ Second Advent, Israel will be an independent nation. During the two world wars, there was no Israel nation.
The fact is that a large number of Jews were living in the Diaspora during world wars one and two. Those who are keen in following what has been happening in the Middle East in the history of the Jewish people would not fail to remember that on May 14, 1948, David Ben Gurion declared independence of the Jewish nation, Israel. When he became prime minister in 1949, he declared Israel’s policy of bringing all Jews home to Israel. What next…
To be continued…..
By Rev. Andrew Mugo and Pr. Peninah Kariuki