Tag Archives: End Times

The End – A Poem of Hope

What will you hear
When His coming is near
Rumors of war
Earthquakes galore
Widespread famine
Love of mammon

Don’t be alarmed
Your future is charmed
By the gift of life
That overcomes strife
Peace will transcend
When He comes in the end

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Advent and the Second Coming

The season of Advent is about anticipating our celebration of the coming of Christ into the world. But it is also about anticipating His second coming into the world at the end of time. For that reason, our pastor gave a sermon yesterday titled “End Times – A Lutheran Perspective.”

It was a very interesting and informative sermon. He talked about the many attempts of mankind and the church to predict the exact time when the end will come, even though Jesus clearly said, “No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.” Matthew 24:36, Mark 13:32.

He also talked about the various perspectives on the end times and the thousand-year reign of Jesus written about in Revelation. There is the pre-millennial view that the thousand-year reign hasn’t yet started. There is the post-millennial view that the thousand-year reign has already passed. And there is the amillennial view that the thousand years is a figurative timeframe instead of a literal one.

But the most important thing our pastor said during the whole sermon took up only six little words: “This is not a salvation issue.

Whether you believe the rapture and tribulation are still to come, that the church is experiencing the tribulation now, or something else does not affect whether you have salvation in Christ. What matters is if you believe God came to this earth as Emmanuel and then died on a cross to pay for your sins.

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16 (NIV)

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The Alpha and the Omega – A Poem

This week I’ve been thinking about how awesome our God is, and how thankful I am for His Glory. Each morning I begin my prayers by praising God as the Alpha and Omega. He is the creator of all things, seen and unseen. So I decided to write my Thankful Thursday poem in praise of His wonder.

The Alpha and the Omega

You are the Alpha and the Omega
The beginning and the end
Before You there was nothing
There will be only You in the end

You are the Alpha and the Omega
Your glory will not cease
When all You’ve created is gone
There will remain Your peace

You are the Alpha and the Omega
Creator of all that is good
Both the seen and the unseen
In awe before You stood

You are the Alpha and the Omega
My living God of grace
You offer love and mercy
Never leaving us in disgrace

You are the Alpha and the Omega
Your name exalted on high
Yet You humbled Yourself
So Your people would never die

You are the Alpha and the Omega
You promise to make all things new
To take away all sin and death
All that You promise is true

You are the Alpha and the Omega
You owe nothing, yet intend
To bless Your whole creation
From beginning to the end

Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”

He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.”

He said to me: “It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To him who is thirsty I will give to drink without cost from the spring of the water of life. He who overcomes will inherit all this, and I will be his God and he will be my son.”

Revelation 21:1-7 (NIV).

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Trust, Sun, and Friendship – My Tuesday Three

Okay, I just couldn’t leave yesterday as my only post about the Third Day concert I went to on Saturday. It was so much fun and I had an awesome time, and so I decided for My Tuesday Three to share three great things about the concert.

The first great thing I want to share is that Third Day sang one of my favorite songs and I got it on video. Here’s my video of “Trust in Jesus” posted on YouTube.

I love how Mac Powell starts this song when he says, “This is a little ditty about the end times and judgment day.” He was kind of making a joke, but also being very serious. We will all face judgment before the throne of God. When we do, we have two choices. First, we can stand before Him on our own merits and say, “Okay, God, I’ve tried my best and I think I’ve done pretty good. I went to church, I didn’t steal or murder anyone, and I tried to be nice to everyone I met.” Second, we can say, “I trust in Jesus, because I know I’ve sinned and not all of my good deeds could ever make up for what I’ve done.” I’ve decided I’ll go with the latter option, and this song is a wonderful reminder of the choice I have made.

What are you going to do when your time has come
And your life is done and there’s nothing you can stand on
What will you have to say at the judgment throne
I already know the only thing that I can say I

There’s nothing I can do on my own to find forgiveness
It’s by His grace alone I trust in Jesus
Trust in Jesu

The second great thing I want to share is that the weather was awesome! It was a beautiful sunny day and 90°, which would have been too hot if not for some shade. But this being the Pacific Northwest, it could just as easily have been drizzling rain even in August. I personally love hot weather so it was just perfect for me. Mac commented that it seemed cool to the band compared to Atlanta, Georgia, where they are from. We were able to find shade to watch most of the show before Third Day, and by the time they came on stage the sun was starting to go behind some trees. It was a perfect!

So you might be wondering who else is part of this “we” I’ve mentioned. Well, that brings me to the third great thing about this concert. I bought my tickets over a month ago not having any idea who was going to go with me. Several times I posted on Facebook that I was looking for someone to go with me, but no one replied that they could. I had asked several people in the week or so leading up to the concert, but everyone had other plans already. My son said he would go with me if I couldn’t find anyone else, but he was just being nice and didn’t really want to go because he is not a big fan of concerts. (If I didn’t KNOW he was my son, I might wonder at this point, because I love concerts!)

On Saturday morning I had a meeting at church that I had to go to, and I still hadn’t found anyone to go to the concert with me. It started at noon, but I knew Third Day wouldn’t be on until after 5:00 so I figured there was still time. When I got home from my meeting I made a few more calls. I finally got a call back from my friend A, and she said she would love to go and that she just had a couple of things she had to do first.

We finally headed out about 3:30 and arrived at the venue by 4:00. We had lawn chairs because it was an outdoor event with seating on the grass. At one point A asked me if I thought it would be okay if she sat during Third Day’s performance because she has trouble standing for long periods of time. I said I thought that would be fine. In the end, though, she was having so much fun and enjoying the show that she stood up through the whole thing (except the one song where Mac told us all to sit).

As we were leaving the concert, my friend A said that this concert was such a blessing to her and that God had some relevant messages for her in the music. Knowing I had been God’s instrument for her blessing was a great blessing to me, too. On the drive home we both were just beaming with God’s love and hope. I was so happy that God had arranged for her to be the one to accompany me. It reminded me that even when I don’t know what He has planned, it’s going to be something wonderful.

So that’s it for My Tuesday Three. It was a concert of trusting in Jesus, sun shining down, and the blessing of friendship. Who could ask for more?

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I’m Ready! Are You?

This post is about something that has crossed my mind several times this week. But I haven’t posted about it before because I thought it was a subject I really don’t know a lot about, and I didn’t want to give anyone incorrect information on this subject. Then this morning God helped me to realize that my lack of complete knowledge is the point I want to make.

The subject is the end times. When asked what would be the signs of His return and of the end of the age, Jesus told His disciples:

You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of birth pains. Matthew 24:6-8.

If you’ve been paying attention to the news lately, you will have noticed that there are wars and rumors of wars raging everywhere. According to Wikipedia (I know, not the most accurate source of info, but not completely wrong) there are at least 32 countries experiencing some sort of armed conflict or civil war. At the recent news about the Nuclear Summit, I read an estimate that Iran would have nuclear weapons in 3 to 5 years. Some countries already have nuclear weapons. There is the war against terror, the war on drugs, and gang wars in many cities.

In addition, the news has reported many natural disasters. There have been a number of large earthquakes since the first of the year – first in Haiti, then Chile, Mexico, Indonesia, Spain, China, and 2 days ago in Utah. Then there is the volcano in Iceland that is disrupting airline traffic all over Europe.

Around the world people are starving even though in other parts of the world there is an abundance of food. In third world countries, people don’t even have fresh drinking water and some are lucky if the eat once per day. Crops fail and there is famine in many nations.

These are all the things Jesus warned would happen  before the end of the age; they are the beginning of birth pains for the birth of the new heaven and new earth written of in Revelation. But are these things really happening more now, or do we just hear about them more because in this technology age news travels much faster and farther than it once did?

Assuming these are signs that the end is near, what should be my response? Should I try to figure out the time and date? Many have done just that. Should I stand on a street corner with a sandwich board warning people of what is to come? Many have done that, too. I am thankful that I am not called to do either of these things and that Jesus told us all what to do.

No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. . . . Therefore keep watch, because you do not know on what day your Lord will come. But understand this: If the owner of the house had known at what time of night the thief was coming, he would have kept watch and would not have let his house be broken into. So you also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him. Matthew 24:36, 42-44.

What I understand from this is that the exact date and hour of Jesus return are not my concern. If even Jesus did not know, then surely it is not necessary for me to know. I am not to worry about such things, but I am to be ready. It could happen today or in 100 years. What is important is that my heart and my soul are ready.

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