Is the world coming to an end?
That’s a question that may be on the minds of more folks than usual these days.
Earthquakes, tsunamis, government collapse — to name a few — headline the news. It’s beginning to read like a breathtaking novel.
But while many of us are wishing we could turn back the pages of recent history, there are others who have been thumbing through this type of scenario for years.
One blockbuster in the 1970’s was author Hal Lindsey’s The Late Great Planet Earth. This non-fiction foretold numerous events — an increase in natural catastrophes among them. Since then, there have been numerous books and theatrical films such as 2012 that have depicted the end times. Some, such as Lindsey’s, are based on biblical prophecy; others are not.
I read Mr. Lindsey’s book when it was first published and have watched with interest as some of what was predicted has unfolded. (If I’d really been paying attention back, then I’d have invested in gold.) But I found that worrying about the future — something of which I have no control — stole joy and peace from today.
However, there are those who have focused on the idea of Earth’s meltdown — almost with what feels like delight — and even predict a Judgment Day. According to an article I clipped from the Herald, radio evangelist Harold Camping asserts it’s just around the corner.
No sooner will I have switched out my winter clothes and moved my spring wardrobe to our bedroom closet than I’ll find it to be pointless. May 21 is the day Camping believes Jesus will make his triumphal return amid a “horror story beyond anything we can imagine.”
Maybe. Maybe not.
Even though this radio icon is filling the airwaves with his end-of-time predictions, I tend to believe that the book I read — the Bible — says none of us know the exact hour when God’s Son is returning. Striking fear in the hearts of people may have them sprinting to the scriptures, but it isn’t the way I’d like to see my friends or family pick up the Good Book.
Instead, the assurance I’d like each of us to read and remember — whether the world ends during our lifetime or not — is that God’s promise can give us peace, even in the middle of chaos:
“and be sure of this — that I am with you always, even to the end of the world.” Matthew 28:20 (LB)