Wednesday, January 5, 2011

The Day of the Lord

While in New York City late last year, I saw other preachers there passing out tracts, open air preaching, and displaying banners. It’s encouraging to see more of God’s people reaching out to the lost. Unfortunately, some of them are really off with their doctrine. At a subway station, I encountered one woman with literature claiming God’s judgment was coming upon the world on May 21st, 2011. When she tried handing me a brochure, I asked her, “Doesn’t the Bible say, ‘No man knows the day or hour of the Son of Man’s return?'” This woman replied, “That was for the church age” and wanted to debate doctrine with me. I opted to walk away. As Titus 3:9 says, “But avoid foolish disputes, genealogies, contentions, and strivings about the law; for they are unprofitable and useless.

Two days ago I read an Associated Press article about other Christians led by a radio broadcaster named Harold Camping proclaiming the rapture of the church will happen on May 21st. One follower named Allison Warden (pictured here) said, “We're hoping people won't take our word for it, or Harold Camping's word for it. We're hoping that people will search the scriptures for themselves.”

I’ve already done so, Miss Warden. While we are to recognize the signs of the end times, Scripture make it’s clear the Lord’s return will happen unexpectedly…

“Watch therefore, for you do not know what hour your Lord is coming.” - Matthew 24:42

“Therefore you also be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.” - Matthew 24:44

“Watch therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour in which the Son of Man is coming.” - Matthew 25:13

“For you yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so comes as a thief in the night.” - 1 Thessalonians 5:2

“But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat; both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up.” - 2 Peter 3:10

The rapture could happen any day including May 21st of this year. But don’t be surprised if there are many disappointed believers still on earth on May 22nd. Miss Warden went on to say, “If May 21 passes and I'm still here, that means I wasn't saved.”

Miss Warden, we are saved solely through faith in Jesus Christ, not by predicting the date of His return.

“For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.” - Ephesians 2:8-9

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