During the last days of the old church year and these days of the Advent Season we hear and read about the “Last Days” as we anticipate the return of Christ. A familiar Bible phrase is "Then the end will come...." Whoa!
That's a loaded statement, isn't it! How would you react to that statement in various situations?
Scenario # 1 > Your personal TV psychic informs you that you will win a $50 million dollar power ball lottery while driving through west Texas, then you'll meet a perfect mate, with which you will buy a perfect mansion, drive a perfectly outrageous limousine… AND THEN you hear those prophetical words, "Then the end will come...." Glad? Sad? Mad? Can life be any more unfair than that?!?
Scenario # 2 > It’s Super Bowl Sunday. A certain pastor (who will remain nameless) drones on in the sermon, and incorporates within the worship four baptisms, Holy Communion, three choir anthems, eleven hymns, and an adult confirmation with a new member welcome. As you hear the benediction, you think aloud, "Then the end will come...."
Glad? Sad? Mad? Do you feel cheated out of lunch or a nap or the pregame show?
Scenario # 3 > As you write the monthly repayment check for your student loan, you notice that only two payments are left.... "Then the end will come...."
Glad? Sad? Mad? In two payments you can now afford that dream trip to west Texas with a few bucks left over for a power ball lottery ticket.....
"Then the end will come...." writes the Apostle Paul (1 Corinthians 15:24). It made him glad to say it because in saying those words he saw Christ returning in glory! "Then the end will come...." What a great day for the people of God! When our Savior returns in glory, the dead are raised, those who are alive at His coming will pass from life-to-death-to-life in the blink of an eye! What a great and awesome day! Our Lord Jesus will take us into His presence forever and ever! Wow! What a time! What an eternity!
"Then the end will come...." Many people tend to become pensive as an old year draws to a close. Talk about the end coming seems to make people nervous. But remember how the apostle Paul approached the end coming – looking up to see the coming of Christ. And so did the apostles Peter and John. When they wrote such phrases like, "Then the end will come...." they expressed expectant joy for the people of God. Even Jesus directed us in times of crisis, terror, and turmoil to "Look up! Your salvation draws near!" During this Advent Season, we keep our eyes focused joyfully and expectantly upon Christ’s glorious coming. Meanwhile, we celebrate His coming in humility to Bethlehem's manger and His coming in grace to us through Word and Sacrament. It's a special time: a time of joyful expectancy. And after we have enjoyed God's love on this side of eternity, "Then the end will come...." and we'll find ourselves immersed in His love on the other side of eternity with our Lord Jesus ... in person!
Celebrating With You Our Savior's Coming,
Written By: Pastor Barrie Henke
Posted on Tue, December 12, 2017
by Stacy Yates