- John Cusack's character in 2012, the movie
This week I'm preaching on Revelation 1. Is this the start of a 26 week sermon series on Revelation, complete with charts and timelines and clear explanations of the "mark of the beast" and identities of four horsemen? Hardly. When I first became a Christian roughly 30 years ago, I dove deep into that stuff. Hal Lindsay's The Late Great Planet Earth scared the crud out of me - and I loved it. Maybe it was the mental rush of thinking I knew some kind of secret about God's timing or plans for the world. Who wouldn't like to have a world-changing secret stashed away? Automatically you're brilliant and everyone else is just a poor, ignorant fool. There's an appeal to that.
In his book (published in 1979), Lindsay wrote that about 70% of the prophecies in the bible had already taken place, and that most of the rest seemed to be on the verge of fulfillment. He then writes:
Lindsay was careful to never predict the "day or the hour" but he seemed to support the idea that it would take place in the next decade or so (the 80's or 90's). And there were many so-called scholars who believed that 1988 would be the most likely year for the rapture and Christ's return.
1988 came and went, and it hasn't happened yet. Which isn't to say that the hope of Christ's return is untrue. It is, in fact, at the very core of our hope in a resurrected Jesus. The Bible is clear that things won't be made completely right - they can't - until Christ returns and transforms everything. Paul puts it this way,