I was in junior high and high school during the 70’s. Watergate, Disco, the Bicentennial, the very first Star Wars movie, listening to Chicago, Doobie Brothers and Kansas on WLS – AM, disaster movies and the Iran hostage crisis were the back drop for my coming of age. (That probably explains a lot about me, doesn’t it??!!)
But in the subculture of Christianity the 70’s was the era of getting freaked out thinking about the return of Jesus Christ. Bible prophecy was the rage – conferences, sermon series, revivals all hit hard on the rapture and the book of Revelation. The film A Thief in the Night gave nightmares to me and my friends – it scared the tar out of us! I remember coming home from school a couple of different times finding no one home but the TV was on and the doors unlocked and I was sure that I had been left behind – the rapture occurred and I was left by myself to face the Antichrist! I remember sitting around the campfire singing “I Wish We’d All Been Ready” and getting goose bumps. We were scared straight most of the time – you don’t want to be caught taking a puff on a cigarette or a swig of beer or peeking at a Playboy when Jesus appears in the clouds!
What got my thinking about this was my Scripture reading for today. I was sitting at my kitchen table reading Matthew 24 (go check it out). It’s one giant warning about being ready for the imminent return of Jesus. As I was reading it occurred to me that I cannot remember the last time I thought about the return of Christ. His possible return hasn’t motivated me to share the good news or avoid sin for a long time. Wow. I think that’s not good. I think I need to be thinking about that a lot more often.
How about you?