As I write these words, the cause of Christ has suffered yet another embarrassing setback, as yet another prediction for the Rapture has come and gone without fulfillment. The damage that has been done is far too extensive to fully document in this brief space, but you’ve all heard the stories. The faith of sincere believers has been shaken. Some who spent their life savings to warn the world of the end are now left to pick up the pieces of their shattered financial lives. And since the media referred to the man who made this prediction as a “Bible scholar,” unbelievers now have yet another reason to scoff at Christianity, laugh at the Bible and Bible teachers, and dismiss anyone who tries to share anything from the Bible with them.
In the past, those who have tried and failed to date the Lord’s coming have sought to account for their failure in two ways. Some have explained that the date they set was accurate, but that the Lord’s coming was a “spiritual” coming. Others have scrambled to cover themselves by admitting to a miscalculation, and setting yet another date. The Bible teacher behind this latest debacle has resorted to both excuses, and now warns that the end will come in October.
Thankfully, we serve a God who proved He can bring good out of bad when He took the worst thing that ever happened, the crucifixion of Christ, and turned it into the best thing that ever happened, the salvation of our souls. And so we trust that you will join us in prayer that the disillusioned followers of this discredited ministry will now begin to question its leader, and that grace believers everywhere will be able to use this sad event to lead these brethren to an understanding of the truth.
There is something we can learn from all this. Christians who believed that the Lord was coming on May 21st were spurred to live for Him as never before, enthusiastically telling their friends and loved ones to be ready. While this failed prediction has no doubt left some questioning if the Rapture will come at all, we who “love His appearing” still believe that we should be “looking for that blessed hope” (II Tim. 4:8; Titus 2:13). With that in mind, may each of us catch the wave of this misguided enthusiasm, and may His coming find us all busily redeeming whatever time we have left in the service of the Christ that loved us, and gave Himself for us.
To the Reader:
Some of our Two Minutes articles were written many years ago by Pastor C. R. Stam for publication in newspapers. When many of these articles were later compiled in book form, Pastor Stam wrote this word of explanation in the Preface:
"It should be borne in mind that the newspaper column, Two Minutes With the Bible, has now been published for many years, so that local, national and international events are discussed as if they occurred only recently. Rather than rewrite or date such articles, we have left them just as they were when first published. This, we felt, would add to the interest, especially since our readers understand that they first appeared as newspaper articles."
To this we would add that the same is true for the articles written by others that we continue to add, on a regular basis, to the Two Minutes library. We hope that you'll agree that while some of the references in these articles are dated, the spiritual truths taught therein are timeless.