THE END … of the beginning

Several days leading up the presidential inauguration on January 20, 2017 I was watching CNN and I noticed in the lower right corner of the screen the words “THE END” in boldface.  Underneath was a countdown clock with days, hours and minutes.  I thought to myself, “How do they know this?  They don’t seem particularly religious.”  But then I noticed in small type beneath those two words, “of the Obama administration”.  I laughed at the not so subtle humor!

This reminded me of a story I heard many years ago about a priest and a rabbi holding a sign on the road that read, “THE END is near.  Turn around before it’s too late!”  A car passed by with the occupants scornfully laughing.  A moment later, CRASH!

The priest then says to the rabbi, “Maybe we ought to change those words to, ‘The bridge is out.'”

Teaching the book of Revelation I have often made reference to the book title “88 Reasons Why the Rapture will be in 1988”.   “The day of the Lord” is a consistent theme in the words of the old testament prophets.  It will be a time when the lion will lie down with the lamb, we will turn our plow shares into pruning hooks and we will learn war no more.  It will be a time when “the knowledge of the glory of the Lord will cover the earth as the waters cover the bottom of the sea”!

The days in which we live seem more and more like the times Jesus described to His disciples, “When you see these things come to pass know that THE END is near”.  But His context was always that THE END was in reality the NEW BEGINNING voiced by the prophets.  Our civilization is not sustainable.  Thousands of years of war, greed and selfishness have taken a deadly toll upon us all.  This beginning of life as we know it cannot last.  However, the world as we know it is but the preface of the world to come.  “Eye has not seen nor ear heard.  Nor has it entered into the imagination the things God has prepared for those who love Him.” the prophets remind us.

The Bible ends with these final words, “Yes, I am coming soon!”  Amen! Come, Lord Jesus!

The grace of the Lord Jesus be with you all.”

Thy Kingdom Come…

Perhaps more unconsciously than consciously, I have been complaining to the Lord about President Trump.

Why him?!

Why now?!

He seems to be the worst possible person to lead our nation in  times like this.  He is moving us and the whole world deeper and faster into catastrophe!

Then, this morning as I go to God, the Truth becomes clear.  It is True – God’s Word – which tells us that leaders, nations, borders and history cannot be who or what they are without God.

It is the world in us that wants peace and prosperity in this world and in this life at any cost.  But this is not possible.  The seeds of the earth’s and our destruction were sewn in the Garden of Eden.  What God has done in Christ Jesus was and is to save us out of this world and place us back into that undisturbed Garden. (Revelation 21 – 22)

On order for His Kingdom to come, which we pray together Sunday after Sunday, His Word must be fulfilled.  How God deals with nations and their leaders is a story told often throughout the pages of the Old Testament. President Trump does not do these things on his own.  He is a catalyst causing the terrible agents of sin and rebellion which thrive in darkness like cockroaches to emerge into the open carrying their deadly pestilence into the world to ravage it.  President Trump does not know what he is doing but he is a willing pawn in the clutches of darkness and is unknowingly expediting the coming eternal kingdom of Messiah Jesus.

Like a grand renovation project, before His Kingdom can come, the old kingdom of this world and all its ways must be demolished.

Peace!  Be still!  Know that I alone am God!  I work and no mortal or spirit can prevent or impede what I do.  Thus says the Lord our God.  Amen.