Lately it seems everyone’s talking about one subject: the end of the world. News of war, natural disaster and government corruption is constantly being drilled into our skulls.
This year, two floods, five tornadoes, one blizzard, an earthquake, a drought and a hurricane are just a few of the natural disasters that occurred in the U.S. this year. The National Climatic Data Center’s latest report states that as of August 3, $32 billion dollars worth of damage has been caused by natural disasters alone.
According to the insurance company Munich Re, the U.S. was hit by 98 natural disasters in the first six months of 2011. That is nearly double the average in the 1990s!
Tragedies are not limited to the U.S. Most recently, the Horn of Africa was struck by a devastating famine that, according to the United Nations, has killed tens of thousands of people. Half the dead are children. And the famine, which hit Somalia the hardest, is only getting worse.
Doesn’t it seem that a different country declares war on another country every other week? That may not be statistically accurate, but it’s not that far-fetched. As the Iraq War continues, multiple uprisings have occurred in the Middle East and Africa. The U.S. has been involved in half of them in one way or another. These include the rebellion in Egypt, uprisings in Syria and Yemen, a civil war in Libya and a conflict in Sudan.
With all this “bad news” clouding our minds, it’s completely understandable why many people wonder if the end of the world is near. Suddenly, all the silly computer-generated images in the (ridiculous) movie “2012” are becoming more realistic, maybe even plausible. Even atheists are turning to the Bible to further prove the notion that the world is indeed at its end. And it just might be.
In Mark 13:5-8, Jesus said, “Watch out that no one deceives you. Many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am he,’ and will deceive many. When you hear of wars and rumors of wars, do not be alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be earthquakes in various places, and famines. These are the beginning of birth pains…”
It can be frightening to even consider the idea that the end of the world as we know it is approaching. But it doesn’t have to be frightening. If you’re a believer with a strong – if sometimes shaky – faith in God, all these events pointing toward the end just bring you closer to the moment you’ll stand before the Creator in the place He has prepared for you.
Some people are claiming the end of the world will be Dec. 21, 2012, but none of us can know for sure. What we do know is that the end could be but a mere heartbeat away. The real question here is, are we ready?