While it’s true that Jesus gave us information about what the end times will look like, it’s important that we not get caught up in predicting the end of the world, because to do that is to miss Jesus’ real point in it all. As James R. Edwards points out,
No one is either encouraged or commended for attempting to be an eschatological [end times] code-cracker. That is folly, for even the Son of Man is ignorant of the End. The premium of discipleship is placed not on predicting the future but on faithfulness in the present, especially in trials, adversity, and suffering. (Edwards, James R. The Gospel According to Mark. p. 386.)
Yes, we will recognize the signs when we see them, but we are not told to get caught up in numerology, nor are we told to interpret all of existence in the light of the end times. We are told to stay steadfast.
Every generation has predicted the end of the world. Eventually one of them will be right and it’s not going to be because they’re smart—it’ll be because they were the generation where it finally happened. Countless people for hundreds of years have been wrong over and over again.
Predicting Jesus’ return is a game of pride. Big names are making lots of money off of their false prophecies. They may not even be aware of it themselves, but these are the kinds of people Jesus told us to beware of. They want to be the ones who finally get it right and receive the praise.
It’s often all about pride. I’ve heard stories of people lying depressed on their deathbed, not because they were dying, but because they wanted Jesus to return in their time. Is that not the ultimate pride? To think of ourselves as so special that out of the billions of people who have passed in the last two thousand years, we were the one that mattered to Jesus’ return date?
Jesus informed us of what the end would be like so we would have hope and so that we would endure all of the hard things that would come our way. He did not inform us so that we would play games with predictions and prophecy. If God-in-flesh didn’t know exactly when He was coming back, you better believe that no human being knows either.
Want to continue the conversation? Take the long journey with my book/audiobook, The Rush and the Rest, or take a shorter path with my condensed version, Fantasy IRL.