The End is Near?

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Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we had all the information we needed to plan for the future? For instance, if I knew that the company I work for will be bankrupt in three years, I would have plenty of time to look for a different job. With that kind of information, it would be simple to take the necessary steps to prevent future suffering and be kept safe at all times. The good news (or should I say, GREAT NEWS) is that we do have exactly that type of information.

Did you know that over one quarter of the bible[1] is made up of prophecy?

What is Prophecy?

Prophecy: “a prediction of something to come”[2] (usually a biblical warning during times of divine judgment).

How accurate has the bible been at foretelling the future? Of the predictions found in scripture, at least half have come to pass exactly as foretold. The rest are partially fulfilled, or set to be fulfilled at a future date. None have been inaccurate. In fact, the bible’s accuracy at foretelling the future is considered a big chunk of the evidence proving it is not merely a historical document, assembled by men, but the actual work of a Divine Being with a divine plan. You won't find this kind of accuracy in the writings of Nostradamus (or anyone else, for that matter).

Predictions for Today

Today, the notion of bible prophecy may call to mind the eccentric person on the street corner holding a “The End is Near” sign. But a quick search of bible prophecy on Youtube will bring up a number of modern day prophets. Some have been wildly inaccurate (Trump would take back the presidency in January, 2021). Others have managed to expertly tie current events to truths straight from the bible (see Athey Creek Prophecy Updates).

The pandemic, violent protests, widespread drought, extreme weather, wildfires (see photo), wars and rumors of wars, confusing and troubling statements from government/culture have all compounded to create a deep sense of unease. What is happening? How do we make sense of the chaos? If today feels so out of control, what will tomorrow look like? These questions have created a renewed interest in bible prophecy. That is a really, really good thing.

Christians are now getting a master class on using discernment while listening to modern day “prophets.” Individuals who present their subjective impressions- perhaps a “dream” or a “vision”- have to be carefully taken with a grain of salt. In fact, the bible explicitly instructs us to do this- we are to approach any modern day prophecies with the understanding that part of the prophecy may be true, BUT part of it may not be.[3] This wholesome advice helps to keep us safe from those who may be misled about their own abilities, or even worse- purposely trying to deceive. It also prevents us from relying too heavily on any fallible human to predict our futures.

Ultimately, prophecy (at least, the prophecy that comes directly from the bible) is designed to be good news. All prophecy- at its core- points to Jesus. Jesus is the offer of a relationship with God that is marked by unconditional love, safety, and power. Are you afraid of the future? Jesus provides the cure for that. Are you experiencing harsh judgment (from self, others, or attributed to God)? Jesus has the cure for that also. Are you struggling to cope with the many darts coming at you from every directions? Jesus doesn’t hold that against you. He expects you to be a human. Nothing more, nothing less.

Still prophecy is often good news surrounded by... bad news, or to put it more plainly-  judgment.  

The Fear of Judgment- Nullified

How does the fear of judgment – a frequent theme in bible prophecy- come to play in all of this? Ultimately, what drives us to Jesus, initially at least, is the fear of judgment. This is the job of “the law”- or the standards of good behavior (see Galatians 3:24-25). The law (the rules of good and bad behavior) will always be impossible to obey (at least, perfectly). If we are at all self-aware, we should be able to identify ourselves falling short at doing and being good. Probably in multiple areas (parenting, romance, job, etc.) and in multiple ways, if we are humble and honest about it. And that failure at “being good” drives us to seek relief. The relief is Jesus. This is the whole purpose of judgment- to drive us to seek relief. And God provides relief. In fact, it is His greatest joy to do so.

Whereas judgement and the law are an ever increasing heavy burden, God’s unconditional love (proclaimed at the cross) provides the permanent solution. Jesus is God, and lived for 33 years in a frail human body. He is the only being on record to have lived the perfect human life. At every turn, when given the choice between good/bad behavior, He always chose good. He now offers His perfect record of always choosing good to anyone who wants it. A substitute, no strings attached- "Take my perfect thought and behavior as if it was yours". The only requirement- to believe. Do you believe Jesus was God in a human body, a person who lived a perfect life? Then YOU are a believer, you are perfect in God’s eyes, and you are safe from all judgment. That is the good news that all bible prophecy points towards. 

Without God, we have no hope. Without His grace, we are left to shoulder life without divine help and compassion. We will be measured by the rules for good and bad, and inevitably fall short. It is an awful thing for us humans to have to bear the struggles of this world without a wise, powerful Helper on our side. It is troubling to look into the future and be unsure about what happens after we die, or whether we will ever see our loved ones again, or not know how to recover after a lapse in judgment/poor choice.  These heavy ideas are forever solved, and relieved, if we believe.

It is often the job of prophecy to encourage us towards that end- to be warned about life without God, the tragedy of existing without permanent forgiveness and mercy. Believe in Jesus- that is enough. Commit to His ways, and then never, ever, ever have cause to fear His judgment. This is the gift of God- ultimate security. This the real end. Perhaps the end really is near.

Prophecy- Guaranteed

Here’s a really fun thing about bible prophecy- God tells us how it all turns out. He gives actual details about future actual events here on earth. Here's what the bible predicts:

  1. The condition of the world will get worse and worse, with more and more deception.[4]
  2. Eventually, there will be a global government- and it will NOT be committed to doing good.[5]
  3. Eventually, mankind will be forced to choose between worshipping evil or doing without material goods.[6]
  4. Eventually, there will be another world war, with Israel as the epicenter.[7]
  5. In the end, God will set all things right.[8]
  6. To be on the right side of history (for now, and all eternity), all that is required is belief in Jesus.[9]
  7. Believers will be “recompensed” or paid back for all they have lost or spent for God. [10]
  8. Truth, goodness, and healthy love will once again reign. This actually starts with us, the moment we believe. We begin to bear fruit, loving God's ways and craving His will be done.
  9. Believers will eventually be reunited with loved ones who have died, and live in a world where mourning, pain, suffering, and death don’t exist.[11]

Many Christians (based on current events that were predicted in the bible) are starting to believe that the end really is near. And, in fact, the bible recommends that we live as if that were true-

For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age, looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works (Titus 2:11-14, NKJV).

In these weird and difficult times, what are we supposed to be doing? How are we meant to live? And how can we best prioritize? If the bible foretells a dim view of our immediate future (things only getting worse, etc.) should we even try to fight it? For example, do we resist the development of a global government, if the bible foretells that it is inevitable?

I’ve been thinking a lot about these questions over the last six months. I can’t wait to share some of the excellent resources I found (coming soon in the next article). One thing that has popped up over and over again is this:

Do not be afraid.

Now that we know what the future holds- there are concrete things we can be doing to prevent unnecessary suffering ahead. After all, that's the whole point of prophecy: to give us a glimpse of the future, that we would do what is necessary to stay safe in God's protection. Plus, it gives us a chance to help others be safe during what may be very distressing times. Are you ready?

Here's a great (short) video to build a sense of peace, no matter how much the world swirls and shouts around us.

[1] . “By one count, about 27 percent of the Bible is predictive” (Payne, J. B., The Encyclopedia of Biblical Prophecy, Baker Pub. Group, 1980, p. 675).


[3] “For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears” (1 Cor. 13:9,10, NIV)

[4] See Matthew 24

[5] See Daniel 7:16-24

[6] See Revelation 13:16-18

[7] See Zechariah 14:2

[8] See Revelation 22

[9] See Acts 16:31

[10] See Luke 14:13-14

[11] See Revelation 21:4

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