Responding to SufferingHow do you feel when your life is interrupted by suffering and adversity?
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Return of The King
2 Peter 3:3
I want to remind you that in the last days scofferswill come, mocking the truth and following their own desires. They will say, “What happened to the promise that Jesus is coming again?” (vv.3-4).
Harold Camping received a lot of attention for
declaring that Judgment Day would begin
around dinnertime on May 21, 2011. Few
people believed him—even his receptionist admitted that
“no one knows the day or hour when these things will
happen” (Matthew 24:36). The secular world had much
fun at Camping’s expense, planning apocalyptic survival
parties and playing R.E.M.’s rock song It’s the End of
the World as We Know It (And I Feel Fine). Even those
who interviewed Camping didn’t take him seriously.
One anchor closed her segment on his prediction with a
knowing smirk, “Let’s hope he’s wrong.”
That’s where all who love Jesus must disagree. We’re
the first to say that Camping’s aim and method were
wrong. No one can predict when Jesus will return, and
Camping’s convoluted and implausible argument for May
21, 2011, was not particularly promising. We were right
to declare that Camping was wrong, but we also should
have wished that he wasn’t.
We should feel a twinge of sadness every night before
we drift off to sleep, for we’ve lived another day without
the return of our King. The Lord’s Prayer includes the
line, “May your kingdom come soon” (Luke 11:2). As
far-fetched as Camping’s prediction was, his spectacular
miss should prompt us to reassess our deepest longings.
Will we only scoff at his delusion, or will we also
remember how much we want our Lord to return?
Perhaps we aren’t excited for Jesus’ return because we’re too easily pleased
with the present. As one preacher said, “It’s hard to pray, ‘Thy kingdom come,’
when your kingdom has had a good year.” Thank God for the good life you
presently enjoy, but don’t allow His current blessings to distract you from
praying, “Our Lord, come!” (1 Corinthians 1:22).
What prevents you from longing for Jesus’ return? What steps can you
take to prepare for His coming?
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