Church asks if recent events signal end of times?

Published 12:00 am Saturday, March 19, 2011

The Rev. Glen Vaughn

I was asked Sunday at church, “What is the meaning of the earthquake in Japan and the tsunami. Is this the end?”

My reply was, “It’s not the end, but certainly is a sign of the end.”

In the Gospel of Matthew, Chapter 24, the scripture gives us several warning signs of the end. In verse 7, along with the earthquakes as a sign, we read that nation will be against nation, kingdom against kingdom, and in verse 6, that we will hear of wars and rumors of wars.

Certainly there have always been earthquakes and wars around the world, but reports are that these have intensified and become more numerous. There is an all out effort by Satan to try to disqualify these signs and cause people to believe nothing has changed. Most of the world lives in denial of an end to our world, but denial doesn’t change the truth of scripture.

The people in Noah’s day were in denial that it would rain, however, scripture reads in verse 39, they “knew not until the flood came and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.”

Scripture does declare Jesus is coming, and there will be an end to the world. Our responsibility is to be saved and ready when He comes. It is too great of a risk for people to ignore this great truth and not be prepared for Christ’s return.

Another sign of the coming of Christ is in verse 12: “And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.”

I hear pastors from many churches, who are concerned about their congregations and their lack of commitment. Christians are just not as committed as they once were. They are committed to things that are only temporal and not to things that are eternal. II Timothy 3:4 declares in the last days men would be lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God.

We can pack our stadiums, ball fields and amusement parks, but seldom visit God’s house and support His work. We make sure our children don’t miss sports practices, but are not concerned with them attending Sunday school or us teaching them the eternal word of God. We cannot place our confidence in our dead practices of the past.

Matthew 24:13 says “But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved” and verse 46, “Blessed is that servant, whom his Lord when he cometh shall find so doing.” It is not what we’ve done in the past but what we are doing at His coming that will count.

The signs of His coming are all around us. “Therefore be ye also ready; for in such an hour as ye think not, the Son of man cometh.”