Why The Signs of The Times?
Sometimes we talk about “what” of the signs of the times without considering the “why”. In other words, why did God tell us there would be signs to look for pointing to Jesus’ second coming? I think there are three reasons:
1. He does not allow us to know the day or the hour, but He wants us to recognize the season of His return.
Jesus roundly chastised the people of His day for failing to recognize the signs of the times (Matthew 16:2-3); He offered numerous signs that point us toward the season of His return.
2. While we labor diligently for the Master while He is away (Matthew 25:14-23), realizing that He is returning soon should motivate us to redouble our efforts — sharing the gospel and urging lost people to flee from the wrath to come.
Paul urged the Church in Rome — and by extension every follower of Jesus Christ — to “do this, knowing the time, that it is already the hour for you to awaken from sleep; for now salvation is nearer to us than when we believed. The night is almost gone, and the day is near” (Romans 13:11-14).
3. He does not want the lost to slip into eternal oblivion without a heightened awareness of the cataclysm that awaits them.
God sends warnings before His wrath is poured out — as He did in Noah’s day, to Sodom and Gomorrah, and to Nineveh; in the end times a Gospel angel will fly above the earth crying out, “Fear God, and give Him glory, because the hour of His judgment has come” (Revelation 14:7).
Heavenly Minded and Earthly Good
Right now, even those without the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit can discern that something is terribly amiss in the world. Their hearts are like plowed ground, ready to receive seed. Our own discernment of the Signs of the Times should not inspire anxiety and frustration and fear, but rather motivate us to plant and water and fertilize and rune — making disciples of all the nations.
We should praise the Lord that He calls us each to serve in a way, a place, and a time where our gifts and talents can bring Him glory.
But in a broader sense our recognition of the Signs of the Times should motivate us all to realize that time is growing short. If the King really is coming — soon, and very soon — then our lives should be oriented around that glorious truth.