Wednesday, June 24th, 2020
We are very close to the apocalyptic final return of Jesus Christ. Because we are close to the return of Jesus Christ, the study of the Book of Revelation is not just somewhat pertinent, it is essential. The Book of Revelation was given for such a time as this. It was given to the Church for the purpose of discerning these days — these very days, right now. And it was given in order to help us understand how to make it through these days without losing hope or losing faith. We do well to be wise and take heed to what is written therein. The wise will pay close attention to the message of the Book of Revelation during this time.
Is the previous paragraph propeller-hatted crazy talk? Does it come across as the ranting of a fanatic fundamentalist? Does it sound like something a cult leader would say to attract the naïve and impressionable? Or is it spot-on? I will show my cards here: I believe every word of it. I believe we are living just before the return of Jesus Christ. Thus we are wise to live accordingly, and foolish to live otherwise. Matthew 25:1-13 comes to mind here.
As I wrote the first paragraph, I gave thought to how it might be perceived. People will deem it outlandish, I thought. People will think it extreme. I imagined someone I know well shaking his head in disapproval, not necessarily because he would disagree with what I say, but because I say it so bluntly. After I wrote it, I thought about editing it extensively. Perhaps I should add lots of qualifiers, in order to sound less loony. Academics will disapprove of the lack of nuance, I realized. They will immediately think of numerous crazies throughout history who misled people with exactly this kind of apocalyptic talk. Should I qualify it somewhat? Should I nuance it?
But I decided not to. Even knowing how it might be perceived, I decided to let it stand as is, because I actually believe every word of it. And because I do, I think it is extremely important that people hear it. The time is very near. It really is.
But what if I’m wrong? What if the time is not near? What if the return of Christ is decades or even centuries off? Am I willing to go down as another crazy zealot predicting the end of the world? People might even call me a false prophet for saying what I say here. Am I okay with that?
Sigh. I guess so. I’m willing to be wrong. I’m willing to be called crazy. I’m willing to be misperceived, or alternatively, rightly perceived as an apocalyptic kook. I believe what I’m saying enough to say it, even if I am wrong.
Of course, at this point, I sorely want to launch into an explanation for why I am right and why you should believe me. But I will not do that yet. Yes, I will do it, but not yet.
Instead, I just ask you to consider everything I am saying with a dose of empathy. For a moment, try to view it hypothetically. You don’t need to believe a word I’m saying; just put yourself in the shoes of someone who truly does believe that Jesus Christ is about to come back. If you were that person, what would you do? Would you feel compelled to say something? Would you want to warn people? I would like to suggest that yes, you would.
Without doubt, you would be tempted to qualify and nuance what you say, because if you’re even a bit smart, you would realize how crazy it might come across. You would also realize that if you’re wrong, you would become a laughingstock and another case study in the history of apocalyptic crazies. But if you truly believed what you claim, you would say it all the same, because you are convinced that a lot of people need to repent, and a lot of people need to get ready to face their Maker. Love for others would compel you to run the risk of sounding crazy.
That’s me. I am that guy.
So I am left with burden of trying to convince you and everyone who reads or listens to this that I’m not crazy. I do realize that. And I know ahead that I will not be entirely successful. A lot of people will just sign off here. Alright, thank you for your time and goodbye.
But for those of you who are still listening, I’ll just start by calling your attention to current events. The world around you is going crazy. Have you noticed? Have you noticed that we are living in especially turbulent times? In Matthew 24:8, Jesus spoke about global birth pangs. Do you recall that? These are those. When you hear the news, do you wonder, even in passing, if these might indeed be the end times, the last days? Perhaps you ought to wonder about that some more. Perhaps you should not immediately dismiss that thought, even if it feels scary. We are indeed seeing the fulfillment of many biblical prophecies, right now. There are many biblical reasons to think that Jesus might be coming back, and very soon. Most importantly, what we are seeing happen increasingly fits what Revelation symbolically prophesies, as I hope to demonstrate and convince you. When you see that, it is both astonishing and awesome.
It all admittedly hinges on how the Book of Revelation is interpreted. Know that from the get-go. Whether I’m right or not about our proximity to Christ’s return depends entirely on my interpretation of Revelation. So I need to explain that further and in greater detail. It’s worth your time, I believe. But you have to decide for yourself. If you are interested in learning my interpretation, please continue to read or listen to this blog.