Monday, May 16, 2011

The world’s last night (Part 1)

Christ the Redeemer in Rio
There are many reasons why the modern Christian and even the modern theologian may hesitate to give to the doctrine of Christ’s Second Coming that emphasis which was usually laid on it by our ancestors. Yet it seems to me impossible to retain in any recognisable form our belief in the Divinity of Christ and the truth of the Christian revelation while abandoning, or even persistently neglecting, the promised, and threatened, Return. “He shall come again to judge the quick and the dead,” says the Apostles’ Creed. “This same Jesus,” said the angels in Acts, “shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.” “Hereafter,” said our Lord himself (by those words inviting crucifixion), “shall ye see the Son of Man... coming in the clouds of heaven.” If this is not an integral part of the faith once given to the saints, I do not know what is.

C.S. Lewis, "The World's Last Night" (1960) [Image: Christ the Redeemer statue, Corcovado Mountain, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil]


  1. I would suspect that the upcoming May 21st "rapture" perdicted by groups out West is pre-mature. However, Lewis is right. We should always be ready, come Lord ! 

  2. Yes, John1, you've guessed why I'm running through Lewis's essay on the second coming! I'm offering what we could call Lewis's apologetic against the date-setters, like Camping's group preparing to be raptured this Saturday.
    As Lewis points out, the danger to us is that we so strong react to such nonsense that we then fall off the other side of the horse, completely ignoring the solid biblical teaching about the second coming. It's there for a reason and while we may agree that reason is not date-setting, we still have a responsibility to discern the true reason.
    Thanks so much for posting your thoughts :)

  3. Did anyone see the picture of the controversial billboard that was recently put up by another spiritual group near Family Radio’s headquarters? It directly challenges them about May 21. Here is a picture of it:

  4. Anytime. I tend to read your blog before the day starts as my devotional.  

  5. Wow! That's rather surprising. It looks like they're promoting the Mayan calendar date but making it Christian. I didn't have much time to look into it, but it looks like a small religious cult of Christian Kabala (Madonna is into Kabbalah of the mystic Jewish variety, but this group is different).  In any case, date setters are misguided since the Scriptures clearly tell us that they do not set up a date for us to mystically discern.

    Thanks for sharing that billboard with us. It's quite fascinating to think this group would put a billboard to be seen by Camping's group. Maybe they are hoping to attract those people after Saturday's failed prophecy.

  6. It is true that Jesus said He would come again, in person and that "every eye would see Him."  This is nothing new nor fanatical.  Many prophecies in the Bible have been fulfilled which indicate that the time of Christ's return is near.  We are not told the day or the hour but we are told to always be ready.  To be always ready is the normal situation of the Christian so there is nothing to be afraid of since we are saved by His grace and goodness.  It will be the "end of the world" as we know it with all its suffering and death but it will, more importantly, be the beginning of an eternity with God; what a wonderful prospect.  Even so come Lord Jesus.