In a world filled with sin, slander, and ever more prevalent evil, it’s easy to become dismayed. Those who believe in the rapture may expect the return of the Lord at any time, while others foresee a very near tribulation. In either case, it’s crucial that we prioritize the commandments of the Lord above all else. No matter the season, we must remember Christ’s call to action; that is, the Great Commission:

“And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to Me. Go, therefore, and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to follow all that I commanded you; and behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.””

– Matthew 28:16-20 (NASB)

Christ’s final command to His followers was not to look for signs of the end of the world, nor was it to predict when the rapture was to take place. In fact, He urged us to continue His own work upon the earth: seeking the lost, baptizing them, and teaching them about the New Covenant. And in this mission, Jesus promised that He would be with us until the end of the world.

Our mission and focus should be to carry out this command and pursue a relationship with the Lord. We should be praying for those who have not come to Christ, devoting ourselves to serving in our communities and churches, raising our children in the way they should go, sending out missionaries to reach every corner of the globe, and anything else that furthers this united mission of the church.

This does not mean we cannot be devoted to other things, nor does it mean it is wrong to look for the Lord’s coming. In fact, Jesus said, “Therefore be on the alert, for you do not know which day your Lord is coming…you must be ready as well; for the Son of Man is coming at an hour when you do not think He will” (Matthew 24:42,44).

We can pray and watch for the return of the Lord, but no man can predict when He will come. Until Christ’s coming, we should be carrying out Jesus’ final command. Our goal should be that no person who could have known Christ perishes.

No matter what season we find ourselves in, fear and despair do not come from the Father. “For God has not given us a spirit of timidity, but of power and love and discipline” (2 Timothy 1:7). Instead, we should focus on Christ’s final words before His ascension: “and behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age” (Matthew 28:20).

Knowing that Christ is with us and that the Lord has given us a spirit of power, love, and discipline, walk with the confidence that you have been equipped for every good work and that you are never alone.

To learn more about what the church has been equipped and called to accomplish, check out some of the online Bible studies at International School of the word.  Consider starting with our newest upcoming course, Pastoral Epistles. Visit today to get started on an affordable online biblical education!

–   Jennifer A. Turner, Staff Writer

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