What's the Point - 4
What’s the Point?
by Lelonnie Hibberd
They will Help and Instruct Many
The church can be like a weather forecaster to the rest of the world. A weather forecaster shows us the radar charts and tells us when a snowstorm is coming so that we can get prepared. We can make sure we have warm clothes, snow boots, the correct tires and all the correct equipment in the car in case it breaks down. If only people in Asia in Dec 2004 had known sooner that there was a Tsunami coming! Thousands of lives would have been saved because people could have prepared by getting out of the way of danger.
It is the same during the time of the end. If only people could know sooner that Jesus is coming. Thousands of lives could be saved. Thousands, maybe millions of people could get out of danger and get to safety. The coming of Jesus is going to be like a flood which comes suddenly and finds people unprepared (Matt 24:38-39).
A storm is coming to this earth and people’s eternal lives will literally be saved if they know what is coming in advance. If we can know and understand the prophetic signs given to us by a loving God; and given for us to know, then we can be ready. It is going to be very important for us to be able to explain what is happening to people who do not understand and to help them to find, follow and love God in the middle of the storm.
What if Jesus Does Not Return
in My Lifetime – Why Then?
There is an end of the age coming for us all, whether or not we are part of the generation that sees Jesus come in the sky. At the time of our death we will absolutely meet Him. When we meet Him we will give an account of how we lived our lives. If we live as the apostles did, crying "Come Lord Jesus" with our mouths and desiring His return with our hearts, we are going to be in the best position to prepare our own generation to meet Him. If we pay attention to everything the Bible says about how to live our lives, we will be in the best position to meet Him ourselves, whether in the sky or at the time of our death.
Whatever generation we live in, we can partner with the Lord Jesus in preparing our peers for His return. When you prepare for a special visitor, you might help your parents to clean house and cook the food. You might think about what you are going to talk about with your special guest; you might even look out the window to see if you can see your visitor's arrival. You wait with anticipation to hear the doorbell ring! It is the same with the return of Jesus. In every generation we can live with a clean heart, in an attitude of repentance, with ears ready to hear what He is saying and eyes open to see what He is doing.
Jesus instructed every generation to "Watch and pray" precisely because we do NOT know the specific time the Lord is returning. There are quite a few Bible stories about being ready, about not being caught sleeping, about being filled with regret when the thief came and you were not ready. These are examples of instances where the Lord Jesus gives us information that is useful to us in every generation. He does not exaggerate, or give us too much or too little information. The Lord gives us exactly what we need to know.
Jesus told us to watch and pray. The apostles believed they would live to see their beloved Lord's return. This vision fuelled their prayers and profoundly shaped the way they lived, the way they shared the gospel, and ultimately the way they gave their lives.
Finally, there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give to me on that Day, and not to me only but also to all who have loved His appearing. 2Tim 4:8
Blessed is he who reads and those who hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written in it; for the time is near Rev. 1:3
16 For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord. 18 Therefore comfort one another with these words. 1Thes 4:16-18
We have one opportunity to be the generation that sees Jesus return in the sky. I want to give myself to this vision, to partner with the Lord to prepare my generation, don't you? Jesus called us the light of the world; and now is our time to shine; to bring His light to every sphere of our society. May God help us to declare the whole gospel, "Christ has died, Christ has risen, Christ is coming again!" God, help me to love your appearing, to read, hear and keep the words of the end times prophecies and to receive comfort from the amazing descriptions of your return!