I remember an old hymn we used to sing at church called “This World is Not My Home.” At the time I didn’t realize how problematic such an attitude can be. Christians are not supposed to be at home in this world because heaven is our true home. This leads many not to care about what happens in this world outside of spreading the gospel. After all, Jesus is coming soon right?
Such a view is irresponsible.
Such a view allows people to pollute and exploit the earth’s resources without thought to the future. It doesn’t really matter with the end so imminent right (as today’s millennialist thinks). I see many people point to “overwhelming signs” that Jesus is returning very soon. All the earthquakes, floods, wars, famines, and other things are happening as Revelation describes so why care about this world so much?
First, we are a part of this world. This earth is our home. We are a part of God’s creation and to think we are somehow not is an insult to Him. He created a majestic universe for us to live in. Certainly, we should look forward to heaven, but we can’t forget to live now. We are not Christians if we fail to live now. If you look at the Gospel accounts of Jesus, he spent most of His time trying to make His current home better by helping people around Him. Don’t forget that in Genesis 1: 26-31 God charges man with the responsibility of cultivating His garden. The attitude of not being a part of this world makes us terrible gardeners.
I know with many I am wasting my time, but here goes. All the supposed signs of the end people are seeing are nothing new. Disasters are not on the increase. Since Jesus died every generation thought they will see the end . All have pointed to “increasing” signs of the end but no one was right so far. That isn’t to say Jesus may not return within our generation, but I firmly think we shouldn’t waste our time looking for His coming. He will come when God sends Him. It is our job to garden and help each with our suffering until then.
All the supposed signs are results of our increased media exposure and over population. With more televisions and people around there are going to be more disasters and people hurt. There will be more people hearing about it too. It is a matter of simple numbers. It doesn’t help that most of the disasters are results of global warming, clear cutting, erosion, poor farming practices, and other general human foolishness. God tends to leave us to face the consequences of our actions. If we would check our population and stop spreading into areas that are prone to earthquakes and other disasters, such “signs of the end” will actually decrease.Wars are actually on a decline when compared to other periods of history. The Medieval Era was one of the most war torn eras in history. The body counts were just as bad (and worse if you consider the Black Death) relative to the population when compared to the modern era.
We need to stop fruitlessly looking for signs of Jesus’s coming and stop thinking this earth isn’t our home. Certainly it is a temporary home, but it doesn’t make it any less a home. We don’t consider a house we stay in for years a not-home. We need to stop worrying about the future and take care of the present: the human and environmental problems. We need to get this home closer to being like heaven.
I doubt God wants us to go to heaven and trash it like we have trashed His garden. Let’s get His garden in order and become children He can be proud to call His own.