All Times Are Uncertain

 

And he told them this parable: “The ground of a certain rich man yielded an abundant harvest.  He thought to himself, ‘What shall I do? I have no place to store my crops.’

“Then he said, ‘This is what I’ll do. I will tear down my barns and build bigger ones, and there I will store my surplus grain.  And I’ll say to myself, “You have plenty of grain laid up for many years. Take life easy; eat, drink and be merry.”’

“But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your life will be demanded from you. Then who will get what you have prepared for yourself?’” Luke 12:16-20

Yes, these are uncertain times due to the pandemic.  You or I could become ill and die from the coronavirus.  On the other hand, we could also get cancer or be run down by a bus.  The truth is, life itself is uncertain.  I recently welcomed a new grandchild.  He was due on August 14th, and at the beginning of August, my daughter was told, “It could be any day!”  But guess what — the exact moment of his birth remained unknown until the day it happened (August 6th).  Our times are in God’s hands.

Does that mean we shouldn’t plan?  Or that we should take foolhardy risks?  Of course not.  We should live reasonably.  However, we should also avoid worrying too much.  The Bible tells us that worry will not add an hour to our lives.  We should not be surprised when our plans are interrupted, because God’s plan is not always ours.  We should not put off doing good, because the opportunity may not come again.  We should live in and enjoy the present because we don’t know what’s around the corner.

We can make all kinds of plans for things that never happen, but one thing is certain.  Jesus is coming again.  Like everything else in life, we don’t know the day or the hour. It might be today.  It might be in a thousand years. Whenever it happens, we want to be ready.  Make plans for that.  Don’t be like the foolish farmer.  Prepare for the sure thing.

Katelyn’s Question #7

This is a continuation of the following posts:

Is There a God? If So, What is God Like?– Or Katelyn’s Question #1

Katelyn’s Question #2

Katelyn’s Question #3

Katelyn’s Question #4

Katelyn’s Question #5

Katelyn’s Question #6

How did everything begin?  How will it end?

Everything began through God and His creation of all things.  This is the main teaching of Christianity, and growing up in the church, what I was told to believe.  Genesis 1:1 says:

“In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.”

God created the world through fiat, a Latin word meaning “let it be.”  When God said “Let there be,” it happened.

Creation is the way everything began, not only because of the existence of God, but the complexity of the world itself.  Only the creationist view can account for the intelligent design of nature and mankind.

Everything will end through an event called “the second coming of Christ.”  This is described as the day Jesus Christ will come again and all believers will rise into heaven to join Christ.  It can also be referred to as “the final judgement.”  Thessalonians 4:16-17 says:

“For the Lord Himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of an archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first.  After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air.  And so we will be with the Lord forever.”

The end of the world is based on the return of Jesus and his judgement of the world.  On that day true followers of Christ will go to heaven, while nonbelievers will descend to hell.  The Nicene Creed, which is a widely used statement of faith states,

“He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead, and his kingdom will have no end.”

 

Life Was Filled With Guns And Wars…

While we’re on Beginnings and Endings, I thought I’d bring up the very last ending, the Second Coming, ’cause Jesus is coming again.  That will be a beautiful ending and beginning for us, but not for others.

When I was a new christian back in the 70’s (I’m dating myself now), there were all sorts of debates about the Rapture going on that didn’t matter.  We were all concerned about how and when the Lord was going to return and what it was going to be like.  I’ve gotten past that now, because it doesn’t matter.  We have to be ready, every day for the Lord to return.  We have to live our lives as if in the next moment He will return.  We need to be about the Lord’s work every day.

This is a song that was a big christian hit back in the day…  I used to sing it with my guitar and usually a bunch of people would join me.  The video on this is from the 70’s, ’cause most of us grew up with Vietnam, war protests and political unrest.  It seemed like the Lord was going to show up any moment and that is the time when this song was written.

I Wish We’d All Been Ready by Larry Norman:

The Resurrection is Now

Jesus said to her (Martha), “I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in Me will live even if he dies, and everyone who lives and believes in Me will never die. Do you believe this?”…John 11:25-26

This verse came to me this morning and I think it’s significant.  Jesus is speaking with Martha about her brother, Lazarus, who died a few days ago.  Martha knows that Jesus has the power to raise Lazarus, but he’s waited so long she’s not sure if he will. So she questions him about his intentions.  She tells him she knows he could have come earlier and prevented Lazarus from dying;  she also knows that all will be raised from death in the last days.   Notice how Jesus answers her.  He does not say “I will be resurrected” or “I will resurrect Lazarus” or even “Don’t worry, we’ll all be resurrected at some point. He says, I AM the resurrection.”

What does this mean?

I think it’s another one of those indications that the kingdom of God is both now and not yet.  If we believe in the resurrection of Jesus, the kingdom has already come in our lives.  We are a “new creation” NOW, even as we look forward to the second coming when “every knee will bow” to Christ.

How would we live if we really believed this?  Well, I think we would give God the proper place in our lives (first) NOW; we would stop being anxious and worried NOW;  we would love others as Christ loved us NOW;  we would want to tell everyone how they, too, could experience this new life NOW.

Think about it:  you and I have already been raised from the dead.  We don’t have to live in darkness and fear.  The resurrection is NOW.