Daily Devotional 17 Sept 2020
“So you, too, must keep watch! For you don’t know what day your Lord is coming...You also must be ready all the time, for the Son of Man will come when least expected” (Matthew 24:42,44).
Have you seen the signs? It’s coming! And whether we are prepared for it or not, its impending arrival will not be delayed. The signs are all there and increasing daily. The temperature has plummeted, the yellows, oranges and reds are beginning to ‘pop’ and the seeds for next year’s growth have begun to spread in preparation for their upcoming months of dormancy. Winter is on its way! As Canadians we all know the signs, whether we look forward to or dread the cold and snow that is winter.
And soon the preparations will begin...changing the tires on our vehicles, closing up our summer retreats, tarping or otherwise covering shrubs and AC units, insulating windows and calking cracks...and let’s not forget digging out all of our winter attire. If we put these items off, we run the risk of having the first snowfall catch us off guard. It’s a game of chance we Canadians often play with winter...not wanting to make preparations too early should winter hold off and we enjoy an extended autumn. Sometimes the gamble pays off and sometimes we regret our procrastination.
The Bible also speaks of an event that will be preceded by signs...
“Jesus told them, ‘Don’t let anyone mislead you, for many will come in my name, claiming, “I am the Messiah.” They will deceive many. And you will hear of wars and threats of wars, but don’t panic. Yes, these things must take place, but the end won’t follow immediately. Nation will go to war against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in many parts of the world. But all this is only the first of the birth pains, with more to come. Then you will be arrested, persecuted, and killed. You will be hated all over the world because you are my followers. And many will turn away from me and betray and hate each other. And many false prophets will appear and will deceive many people. Sin will be rampant everywhere, and the love of many will grow cold. But the one who endures to the end will be saved. And the Good News about the Kingdom will be preached throughout the whole world, so that all nations will hear it; and then the end will come’” (Matthew 24:4-14).
I would suggest that all the preceding signs for Jesus’ return are already evident...and have been for a long time. There is a reason that Jesus told the disciples that He could return at any moment–we live in a world that has been filled with all of these signs since the beginning of the early Church. The times in which we live are not unique. Over the past 2,000 years, Christ’s followers in various parts of the world have suffered immense persecution. False prophets and messiahs have repeatedly arisen and been exposed. The faith of many has indeed grown cold. Today, Christ’s return is imminent...just as it’s been for the past 2,000 years!
Today, we have had a revival of sorts of ‘end times’ talk due to our global experience with COVID-19. Many preachers speak of Jesus’ coming return. But remember, our experiences are not unique from all other times in history. The disciples of the first century AD expected Jesus’ return in their lifetime, and believers in each successive generation have held to the same expectation. The world we live in is ready for Jesus’ second coming. He did not provide a date, just the warning to be ready. We don’t know when He’s coming back, so it is imperative to live in a state of preparedness. I don’t know when Jesus will return, but I absolutely believe that He will. And even though I don’t know the date and time, I know that we are one day closer than we were this time yesterday. Are you convinced? Are you ready?
~ Pastor Jane
First licensed for pastoral ministry in 1994, Pastor Jane Peck has served in camp and church ministries in three denominations, five provinces and in a variety of roles. Her most recent position is that of Pastor at Hope Chapel which she began in 2020. She is excited to see what God can and will do in the days to come!