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The promises have been kept

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POSTED: December 24, 2012 1:00 p.m.

Well, if you are reading this column, you can be certain that the prognostications were wrong.

The end of the world did not come Friday after all. So we get to celebrate Christmas again this year, and life will go forward for the foreseeable future.

I have to tell you that I was pretty confident that the world would not end. You see, as a Christian I take very seriously the things taught in the Bible. God does say that the world as we know it will come to an end one day. He tells us in many places we must be prepared for that day. But it also is made clear that no one knows when that time will be. Any time anyone attempts to predict the time, they are bound to be mistaken.

But it is important for us to remember that the Bible makes this bold prediction: Jesus is coming again. And when he does, the world as we know it will cease to exist. All people will be judged, and their ultimate destiny will be fixed at that time.

Perhaps there is no better time than now, just a few days before Christmas, to remember this truth. There are some who would dispute this idea. After all, it has been so long since those promises were made. Has God forgotten? Or was he mistaken?

But at Christmas, we often recall the Old Testament predictions for the first coming of the Messiah. Isaiah, Jeremiah, Hosea and others predicted the coming of this anointed one (that is the actual meaning of the terms “Christ” or “Messiah”). For years and years, the people of God waited and waited. Some gave up hope.

But in his timing, God kept his promises, and Jesus was born. He lived a perfect, sinless life, died on the cross for our sins and was raised from the dead.

In the midst of all that he did, he also made many promises. One of the greatest is found in John 14: “I go to prepare a place for you, and if I go and prepare a place for you I will come again and receive you to myself, that where I am there you may be also.”

Just as God kept his promises about the first coming of the Messiah, so he will keep his promises about the second coming. This week, we celebrate the birth of our lord and savior, Jesus Christ. We give thanks that he “became flesh and dwelt among us.” But we also anticipate more to come.

The Lord will come again. We cannot predict the time, but we look forward to it with certainty.

 

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