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Our Legitimate Preoccupations Are we so preoccupied with this question because version of Christianity which we have is so insufficiently exciting that we need to contunually embellish it? hype it up (because we do live in an age and culture of hype)? give it a bit more spin (because we seem to have more spin in our culture than we have simple truth)?
Some may quote Jesus that we should know signs of time: "You know how to interpret appearance of sky, but you cannot interpret signs of times." (Matthew 16. 3). But Matthew 24. 36 clearly over-rides this. Indeed, Jesus immediately went on to warn that "A wicked and adulterous generation looks for a miraculous sign, but none will be given it except sign of Jonah." And, it says, Jesus then left them and went away. When we become preoccupied with looking for, trying to discern, expecting end times in our day, are we not putting ourselves in same category? ThePharisees and Sadducees wanted a sign because what they had before them was not enough. But in fact, had they been able to discern it, what they had was considereably more than enough.
Paul's case was different. He simply mistook situation. We cannot claim that. We have his mistake and 2000 years of history as a basis for knowing differently. To know date Father has determined is simply not in our portfolio to be concerned with. In a sense, it does not, or at least should not, matter to us whether Second Coming comes at tea time today or in another 2000 years.
In either case, there will be primarily one judgement for each of us. Surely, our concern is to be ready for that - whenever it comes. How and when and where it comes is of no consequence, if only we are ready for it.
About The Author A K Whitehead Web Site: www.christianword.co.uk Experience: Over twenty years in Christian healing and teaching. Qualifications: B.A., M.Phil., Cambridge University Certificate in Religious Studies. Conditions of use: This article may be reproduced on condition that it is unaltered and that all this information is included.