All of Israel expected the Messiah to come and they carried in their minds a picture of how he would come: a powerful king that would deliver them from political oppression. With the Messiah in power, they would trample their enemies and live in prosperity.
Only a handful of people, though, recognized the first coming of Christ: Mary, Joseph, Elizabeth, Zechariah, a band of scruffy shepherds, an entourage of wise men, and a couple old people in the temple courts. All the signs and prophecies about his first coming were fulfilled, but since they weren’t fulfilled in the way the people had imagined, few recognized Christ’s appearance.
Thirty-three years later, after he had fed thousands, healed hundreds, raised a few from the dead and walked on water, they begin to think this just might be the Messiah. Still with their image of how it would all play out, they threw their cloaks on a donkey, hoisted Jesus on it and spread palm branches on the road to Jerusalem. That day, it was just as they had imagined.
When he hung, though, stretched out on a cross and refused to show his power for self-delivery, even his closest followers and intimate friends turned away, saying, “Nope. Got that wrong. This isn’t the way it’s supposed to play out for the Messiah.” The prophecies—the CLUES—were all there, but they just didn’t unfold the way the people had imagined.
Jesus and other writers in the Scriptures have left us prophecies—CLUES—about the second coming of Christ and the End Times. Our Christian culture is swamped with books, movies, songs, sermons, and conferences that explain the prophecies and how they will unfold, BUT
THE PROPHECIES WILL NOT UNFOLD AS WE IMAGINE
When Jesus spoke to the disciples about End Times (Mark 13) he said, Many will be deceived (v.6) Be on your guard (v 23) Be on guard! Be alert! (v 33) “No one knows about that day or hour …If he comes suddenly, do not let him find you sleeping. What I say to you, I say to everyone: ‘Watch!’” (vs 32,36)
THE FULFILLMENT OF END-TIME AND SECOND-COMING PROPHECIES
WILL NOT BE AS WE IMAGINED
While we watch for headline clues, fulfillment may be unfolding in some obscure place, recognized by only a few, and bathed in blood. Pay attention to the CLUES, but be alert and open to the way God fulfills the prophecies of End Times.
Martha Hawn VanCise ©2015 www.signpostsonhightrails.com