Saturday, May 21, 2011

"A lot of people won't get no supper tonight/A lot of people won't get no justice tonight."

The Song: "Armagideon Time," The Clash. Words & music by C.S. Dodd & Willi Williams. Track 10 of the Grosse Pointe Blank soundtrack, 1997.
When/how acquired: Purchased CD, 1997.
Listen/watch here.

It's early in the morning on the East Coast of the United States, but it feels safe to say that predictions of the Rapture were premature, at best. offers compassionate advice for people who genuinely believed that Jesus would return today, but it's hard not to feel impatient with them. It's hard to imagine a greater sin of pride than presuming to know the mind of God, especially since the Gospel of Matthew is explicit: "Therefore, stay awake, for you know neither the day nor the hour" (Matthew 25:13).

If that weren't enough, the rest of that chapter makes it even more clear: preparing for the second coming has absolutely nothing to do with predicting dates for the end of the world. It's about looking for Christ in everyone, and doing what we can for each other while we can. All those people who battened down the hatches in preparation for being taken up to heaven don't seem to have read to the end of Chapter 25.
When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit upon his glorious throne, and all the nations will be assembled before him. And he will separate them one from another, as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. He will place the sheep on his right and the goats on his left.

Then the king will say to those on his right, "Come, you who are blessed by my Father. Inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.

"For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, a stranger and you welcomed me, naked and you clothed me, ill and you cared for me, in prison and you visited me."

Then the righteous will answer him and say, "Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? When did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you? When did we see you ill or in prison, and visit you?"

And the king will say to them in reply, "Amen, I say to you, whatever you did for one of these least brothers of mine, you did for me."

So all you Rapture believers, unless you were out there in the food banks and the shelters and the hospitals and the prisons, I'm not interested in a word you have to say. Disappointed, you say? Ungrateful, I call it.

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