Monday, June 14, 2010

Is it the " end of the world as we know it " ? Part II

There is a hymn that goes thus – “One glad morning, when this life is over, I’ll fly away”. It sounds so nice especially when you think of all the freedom a bird has as it spreads its wings and just flies, ‘over the mountain, over the sea…’ and blady blady bla…

Ok. I might just burst some bubbles today.

As many people know, I’m not exactly, ‘pro-denominational’, if I may use that word. In plain English, I am not someone who is ready to fight and die ‘for my pastor’, or thinks that my ‘church’ (denomination, really) is the “best” or any such bizarre unscriptural notion, which I find very absurd, but which seems quite a norm in some Christian circles. I also tend to try to dissociate my emotions and desires when I am on a fact-find mission, in order to be as objective as I can...humanly and humanely speaking.

So when I get on my knees, or take a break from playing video games to talk to God about something really important to me, I try not to focus on what I want the outcome to be – and on the other hand, I try not to take up the martyr think – which basically says, ‘God will not like anything I like’. The Martyr think is that if, for example, you plan to be a business man, God will actually prefer you to be a cripple who plays the flute in Pakistan – and who brings a lot of souls to him….Argh!!!

Talk about disinformation tactics by Satan to scare people from desiring to HEAR and FOLLOW God’s WILL! God gave me my wife – and wow, is she WONDERFUL! Truth is, while God can be very weird in his thinking (from my point of view – and you can check out HIS ‘experiments’ with Ezekiel!), it will not be a crushing burden that is too heavy for the individual he allows to pass through fire – that is just the way it is. NO ONE can measure the grace (or strength) that he makes available to an individual who goes through affliction.

BUT what am I getting at, you may ask?

I plan to talk about the end of the world – which is a loose term used to describe the series of events that lead to a new age – and what a series of events these will be! But in laying up a foundation, I want to critically look at an event that is normally talked about as a lead or start-up trigger for the end-of-the-world countdown.

And that event is the RAPTURE.

As many already know, the word ‘Rapture’ is not in the Bible, like the word ‘Trinity’. However, it is a generally accepted word that describes an event - a mass teleportation of believers in Christ. For non-Christians reading this article, when the rapture occurs, it is believed that Christians will be transformed from flesh and blood – and will have new bodies that are immortal.

The rapture will happen in the ‘twinkling of an eye’ and believers everywhere will fly up at mind-blowing speed to meet Christ in the skies. Very importantly, those who do not believe will be ‘left behind’ to face the great tribulation – a time of sorrow and bloodshed on earth that will be the worst the world has ever seen. This will be because after the rapture, the anti-christ or ‘Satan-Meshiac’(in Hebrew), a political figure that is heavy on charisma and eloquence – and who will be backed by Satan himself – will emerge as a prominent world leader. As the bible puts it, he will destroy WONDERFULLY.

So, let me ask a question. Would your Christian perspective change dramatically if you found out that you were not going to be “flying away” in the rapture and ‘escape’ the Great Tribulation? How would you feel if you are actually going to experience, as a real believer, the Great Tribulation?

Would you live differently, would you relate differently – or would you feel a great sense of fear because you had banked all your hopes on escaping and do not know you would react if forced to choose between Sword – or the Lord?

Suddenly, Peter’s denial of Christ takes a new perspective – Deny Christ or be crucified with him…literally.

Let me BRIEFLY simplify it…

Rusty nails going into your hands and feet, death and pain from blood loss, tetanus and gangrene, your twisted posture putting pressure on your heart as you strain to stay upright or dangle against the props that are the painful nails. Your body is wracked with pain as the crowd around you laugh at your ‘stupidity’. They say you could have spared yourself the shame by being ‘smart’ and denying the Savior’s name. At that point, you don’t know if it’s worth it because your mind is fogged over as you try to shake off the blood from getting into your eyes, eyes that the vulture above you waits for – and that’s if you do not lose it first to the more adventurous crows. Anyway, it knows instinctively that your skin will be available even if your eyes are not. Your body is broken and so is your heart – because you decided to hold on to a Heaven you have not seen with your eyes…

That was a SMALL part of Peter’s thought process…and of his options.

It’s easy to ‘lay down your life for Christ’ when you are a denominational (“church”) service, seated on comfy pews, the room air conditioned for you, skillful chords playing sweetly on the piano, surrounded by people trying to outdo one another in lifting hands up, the air completely charged; part Spirit, part emotion, part learnt reaction…and with all the physical and emotional security that surrounds. But Jesus’ parable of the sower (kindly Google if you don’t know it) says something deep about seed on stony ground. Jesus explains that these seeds that grow quickly and die are those who have no root in THEMSELVES… So can you really stand when you are all alone?

To be Continued...


  1. Dude

    you sound like a thinking man that is struggling with the tradition of what it means to be a Christian. You are not the first and definitely not the last. I have watched this tradition since my birth and always found it absurd. Until God decided to get involved with me personally and answer a prayer. Jesus said that if we believe we will do greater things then he did. Lets start the great things movement and get busy showing not telling believers that fact...


  2. I like the way you think -- that you're obviously not afraid to question status quo. If you're open to exploring this issue from all sides, and if you'd like to check out a radical (& yet quite biblical) perspective of the "time of the end", my friend wrote this (really free) online book:

    Enjoy...! :)

  3. Thanks Dena. I have downloaded the book. Looks really interesting.