Leaning… a little too far

When is Jesus going to return? Has He already returned? What’s all this talk of a rapture, an anti-christ, and a millennium? What does the Bible teach about the end of it all as we know it?

First… some balance. You know, like the unspoken but very much inferred beatitude, “blessed be the balanced.”

What is meant by balance is… what are believers to do with their time while they await the Lord’s return? If we’re waiting, what’s supposed to be our mindset and attitude while doing so? While this sounds pretty simplistic, evidence shows we don’t really understand what we’re supposed to be doing. Or at least, we don’t do what we understand we are supposed to be doing.

But we’re not the first. Paul dealt with at least two churches who leaned one direction or the other too far regarding their understanding of eschatology and its effect on their lives.

By the way, two posts leading into this one can be found here and here.

The first of these churches was located in Thessalonica. These people were thoroughly convinced Jesus was late in His return. The fear was what if I die before He returns… what then? Paul spent the necessary words to convince them God is always on time.  He stressed, “Jesus isn’t late… there’s just some stuff that has to happen first.”

Worse than that, these people became so absorbed in the second coming, that they began to be of no value in the world. Some decided work and earning a living was a ridiculous thing to spend one’s time doing, for Jesus could return at any moment.

Paul’s response to this type of attitude is very stark. “If they won’t work… then they should starve.” The coming of the gospel in no way negated man’s responsibility to take care of his family, fellow-man, and the earth. In fact, it is intensified because with the gospel comes the knowledge that all we do is to be done for the Lord! Christians should be the hardest workers, the most obedient to the laws of the land… their absolute best in every area.

What evidences can be seen that indicates leaning too far in one’s grasp for an understanding of the end times? Evangelism… with no involvement in discipleship? …a failure to build up and edify the body of Christ in preparation for a long delay should the Lord tarry? (Note: the parables of the 25th chapter of Matthew presuppose a lengthy wait)

…then what’s the opposite of this slothful response? Lord willing, more follows.

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About mtsweat

Seeking the rest that is only promised and found in Christ Jesus, along with my treasured wife of more than twenty-five years, we seek to grow in our relationship with our Heavenly Father, walk with the Holy Spirit as He moves our hearts, loving others always as Jesus loves us, and carry the news of His glory, the wonderful gospel, that gives light and life where there once was only darkness.
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10 Responses to Leaning… a little too far

  1. Pingback: Actively Waiting with the Right Attitude | Resting in His Grace

  2. Pingback: WORKING WHILE WE WAIT AND WATCH | Drusilla Mott

  3. Pingback: Weebles Wobble and Jesus Returns | Resting in His Grace

  4. We can rejoice in the certainty of the Lord’s promise that He will return and we can rejoice in the manner of His return and “look” for His appearance, but we must never lose sight of our purpose here.

    We are to “occupy till He comes”. We are to serve wholeheartedly in the area to which He has called us. We are to plan and implement as if we had many years – but always aware that He come come in the next second. We should have an urgency about reaching others with the Good News of the Gospel and encouraging believers in their walk and witness.

    As Jim Elliot (missionary killed while reaching out to the Auca Indians) wrote in his diary not long before he died:
    “So live, that when you come to die you have nothing left to do, but die”
    or rephrased in this context:
    “So live, that should He come to today, you are found serving Him and fulfilling His purpose, while waiting and ready”

  5. granbee says:

    No, we should be like the two women working in the field when one is raptured and one is left. The emphasis here should be on WORKING IN THE FIELD of God’s vineyards!

  6. I must admit, end times a subject in the bible I pay attention to the least. But, as you say, balance is important. While I think people overemphasize it, it’s still a part of the Bible and must be explored. Heavy stuff, though. Thanks for the post.

  7. Wow, that is soo true. This happens a lot though when people are pursuing things with the wrong focus and without understanding. There needs to be that balance we’re you keep your faith alive but at the same time not to remain complacent of the things that are required of you as you wait on the promises of God.

  8. Rob Barkman says:

    Very interesting series… I appreciate your concern about taking things too far in the area of eschatology. I’m looking forward to your next posting. Lord bless

  9. writinggomer says:

    Great post can’t wait to see the next one. What to do seems so simple, before the 2nd coming. Jesus 1st priority for us, love Him completely in every way. Jesus 2nd priority, love all around us no matter what.
    If I understand this correctly….then this means taking care of family, working to provide, giving to those in need, being a friend, helping others, being involved in church, spreading the word about God….sounds like we are to live our lives the way we always do, for Him.

    The single greatest thing we can do to be ready for the return of Christ is the very same thing we need to do to be ready to meet Him upon our death (if that happens before the rapture)…live our lives as Jesus has asked us to, then we will be ready for His return, simple.
    Notice I did not say easy!

    Blessings Mike
    Greg

  10. literary lew says:

    I continue to enjoy your posts. I’ve seen too many lose perspective re the 2nd coming and basically abdicate from life. Keep it up.

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