August 19, 2011 The End of the World
Markets remain volatile, nations falling into bankruptcy, unemployment is steadily high, and the 24 hour news cycle constantly reminds us that indeed the world is coming to an end. Being an ardent student of Revelation, the idea of the world's systems shaking (if not falling) does not come as a surprise. God explains that the corruption of humanity on the whole will expand until it spoils every aspect of life as we know it. All the world's systems; economic, political, and even religious, crumble and crash until the message resounds "Babylon the great has fallen". And we have a front row seat to the end.
Well I am not saying this current financial crisis shall conclude in the final collapse of the world system. Remember, those who dwell on the earth (earth-dwellers) celebrate in amazement when the wounded beast recovers.(Revelation 12) And so our world is brought to the brink of the end, but maybe this will not be the end. To say the end remains in the distant future also does not ring true. Look at what brought us to the edge of ruin. Sin. Sin of greedy banking institutions giving out unsecured loans, sin of governments spending money that was not theirs, sin of greed from financial firms, and the sin of billions of people without moral restraint trying to get their hands on bigger homes and flat screen tvs which they could not afford. The end of the age shall come because of the rise of this kind of sin, godless self-seeking unrestrained ego, greed, and selfishness.
Now of course the Church stands in the midst of this rise of degradation calling for moral transformation, right? No. In the past the Church may have been the voice of restraint and the voice of godly reason but not so much today. The Church has a new Gospel, the Gospel of psycho-Bible that only seeks the hearer’s happiness. The Gospel of cultural relevance which reflects so much of the world’s values that there is little to no difference between the message of the Church and the world. Remember Paul warned that at the end of the age the Church would be filled with people who, “gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear.” (2 Tim. 4:3) Such doctrine only supports the degradation that ultimately causes the world to crumble.
The values of Christianity should directly counter the values of the earth-dwellers who destroy this age. But when the message is compromised, as Paul says it shall be, Christian influence shall wane and sin shall finish its destructive work. And so shall the end come. Europe is a hundred or so years ahead of us teaching us that moral bankruptcy and financial bankruptcy go hand in hand. Yes, the world is coming to an end, the light is fading, the salt is losing its saltiness.
How do we stop the end? Simply obey Jesus’ commission, “go make disciples.” Disciples learn to obey all the Scriptures and to live a transformed life. They become different as the Scripture permeates their heart and mind. The mature disciple forms all opinions and makes all decisions under the guidance of the rightly divided Word. Such Disciples do not share the values of the earth-dwellers, and become a stinging salt to the sinner, and a bright light too. These disciples transform and preserve the world from its sinful end.
With all the strategies of the modern Church to keep our place through marketing and worldly methodology – it is time to save the world by making disciples.