According to bible prophecy we are living at the end of time. There really isn’t very much left to be fulfilled before Jesus can return. If you read Matthew 24 you’ll find everything Jesus predicted there happening today. When we examine the prophecies of Daniel and Revelation we also find that all of the major prophecies pointing to the end of time have been fulfilled. We also know from both Matthew 24 and Daniel 12 that the world is going to see a time of trouble hit it like we have never seen before in the history of mankind. Considering all of the periods of history that were extremely difficult that thought can be scary. Worse than World War II? Worse than the mass slaughter of over 20 million people including 6 million Jews? Really?
So how are we going to prepare ourselves for this time of trouble? CAN we prepare ourselves for it? Some people’s solution is to go out and gather all of the supplies they need to bunker up and outlast whatever terrible event is going to happen. Store enough food, water, fuel and provisions to last a few years in hiding. Others speak of the need to form semi-closed or fully closed communities out in the country that are self sufficient and able to ride out the hard times that are coming upon us. What is a person to do?
God does call us into community. We have Hebrews 10:25 for example that clearly teaches us that we aren’t to be islands off by ourselves. We need to rely on other people who have a common spiritual heritage and commitment to following and obeying God.
“not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.” – Hebrews 10:25
This passage tells us that we need to meet together regularly. We need to be encouraging one another. What better way to be encouraged than to spend time with like minded people who share a love for Jesus Christ? Look at the last part of that verse though… “all the more as you see the Day drawing near.” Since we can know from bible prophecy that we are living at the time of the end we should be following the advice of the writer of Hebrews. We need to go out of our way to encourage each other and to meet together. Clearly being in community is a good thing. Community living in and of itself is good, not bad. We do however need to examine our motives for wanting a community.
Are you trying to save yourself?
Why do you want to be in a community? Is it to escape the problems of the world? That might be ok except that God has also commanded us to go into the world and to make disciples of all men (Matthew 28:19-20). Is it to save yourself and your family from the hard times ahead? Be careful here. It isn’t wrong to plan ahead but we need to recognize that we must first and foremost put ourselves into God’s hands. He needs to take care of our needs. He has also promised that we are going to be facing persecution and even death for his name and to be happy when it happens (Matthew 5:10-12) not sad. We shouldn’t shy away from doing something because the world won’t understand or because we are going to get persecuted when we do it. Everything we do needs to be done as we are surrendered to God’s will for our life. He is in control. He will guide and lead us when times grow tough.
Do we just give up?
God has given us the capacity to think for ourselves. We can plan ahead. Planning isn’t wrong when done with the proper motive. We must always be ready to walk away from our material goods. We aren’t living for this world but for heaven. It’s ok to fight for our rights but only to a point. We aren’t to unnecessarily harm others. Violence isn’t the answer. Force in and of itself is still us trying to save ourselves apart from God’s help. No, we need not worry about tomorrow. Let’s not worry about how bad things are going to be. Instead, starting today, starting now let us put more trust and confidence in God’s leading in our lives and determine not to do anything that goes against His word.