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Showing posts from December 16, 2012

The End of the World!?!

12/21/12 is finally here! The next end-of-the-world tsunami has hit the shores of our culture, and the people I talk to jokingly speak of eating all the ice cream they want, maxing out their credit cards, and partying like its 2012--just like they did in 1999.

Earlier this month I blogged about the end of the world on 12/21/12. You can read it here. Since Friday is supposed to be the end of the world, I wanted to post on last time on the subject. And, since I expect to be here next week, I will post then as usual and as the Lord wills.

"Fear is the opposite of faith," Someone once said. I agree with that statement. Christians do not worry about tomorrow because Jesus made it clear that while he did not know the date or time of the end, we can be sure God's got the final say on when all we know is over. (Matthew 24)

The words of Jesus we usually read at funeral services are appropriate here. Jesus was comforting his disciples when they began to realize his end was near.

Newtown and Bethlehem

I'm afraid lifelong, American Christians treat Christmas with at least two false assumptions:
The first false assumption is that (maybe due to carols like Silent Night, O Little Town of Bethlehem, and Angels We Have Heard on High) we assume nothing bad was going on when Jesus was born in Bethlehem.Somehow it must have been more tranquil and God chose that time in history because life was simpler and less violent. Nothing like what happened in Newtown was anything like reality to those who lived at the time of Jesus' birth.
The second false assumption is that God worked differently then than now. We assume that when Jesus was born everything immediately changed, Jesus grew up blissfully, and the Kingdom of Heaven eventually came on earth until we are in Heaven. God protected the just and the ways of God became embedded in the hearts of humans forever more.
These assumptions about the Christmas story are false, and they cause us to miss how Jesus' birth in Bethlehem over 2,00…