The end of the world is coming again and people wonder, “Is it true this time?”
This year’s doom’s day prediction is scheduled for September 23rd based on an alignment of the stars called Virgo, the constellation of a woman that will be in position over the moon and under 12 stars. As with most end-time predictions, the date corresponds to this year’s Jewish calendar and believers are saying this rare alignment of stars represents the last days woman found in Revelations chapter 12 with “the moon under her feet and a crown of twelve stars on her head.”
What are we to do? With the Jewish holidays just weeks away, we could spend our remaining days and hours (or until next year’s predictions) trying to calculate what the Bible says about the end of the world and wait to see what happens.
But the truth we so easily ignore, and which is often concealed behind these annual doom’s day predictions, is that the end of the world is coming for all of us – and it could be any day, at any hour. By September 23rd, millions around the world will die in car accidents, disease, overdose or in one of the many hurricanes and natural disasters now visiting the earth. Are you ready?
Can you get ready? The idea that we are at the end of the world can be scary, and if so for you, hold that thought for a minute, and ask yourself, “What am I afraid of?” When you discover the answer, think about what changes you could make in your life, where you might better invest your time and how you can make things right with God, and with yourself. Nobody knows better than you what you need to do to get your house in order.
If you clean your house just once a year it becomes an overwhelming task to face. The time you need to clean it, and the energy you would need is so great that you probably give up before you even start. Our lives are not much different than a dirty house. If it hasn’t been cleaned for a long time it’s easy to give up. It would be far better to clean regularly, take the garbage out every day, wash your clothes when they are dirty and fix things when they break. Maintain your life, correct, repair and be ready for the end of your world. It could happen any day.
These end of the world scenarios remind me of the safety exercises that are supposed to make us ready for fires, bomb attacks and earthquakes, so that when the real thing happens we won’t become confused and disorientated and get lost. In the Israeli army we use a saying from Alexander Suvorov, the greatest Russian military strategist: “Hard in training, easy in war.” Practicing to be prepared for the coming of our Messiah, or to meet him sooner than we thought, is always a good idea, even if you wonder about the sign of a 12 starred constellation.
Exercise kindness, unselfishness, sympathy, decency, good will and live an upright life before God in your daily life and perhaps the end of the world (or the end of our world) might not be so terrifying. The only way to cope with the disquieting fact of our pending mortality is to practice daily the skills of faith in God and a moral lifestyle until these become so much a part of who you are that you don’t even have to think, or worry, about it anymore because you are prepared.
The Apostle Paul in his First Letter to the Corinthians (chap.13) reminds us that we prophecy in part, but faith, hope and love endure forever (not doom, gloom or red moons). One more thing. Remember Noah. The end of his world came true even as he boldly warned the people through his words and actions. How many believed and repented? How many missed that boat?