I’ve been silently watching the whole rapture thing unfold for the past month or so (what does that word “rapture” even mean, where the heck did it come from?). Honestly, I never bought into it for a second. Why not, you ask? After all, I’m a self proclaimed Christian, the bible talks about the events of the end of the world, and some of these preachers have pretty convincing arguments. Why not buy in?
I think the biggest reason not to buy into any of these ministries that focus on the end times is because, in my opinion, that’s not what Christianity is about. It’s not about wanting to get the hell off this miserable rock and go somewhere “better”. It’s not about gloating over your impending rapture on billboards that simultaneously damn your un-believing neighbors (Although the guy who keeps letting his dog crap in my yard is almost certainly going to hell and I’d love catch him so I could tell him the error of his ways).
So what is Christianity about? I believe Christianity is basically about Love. God’s love for us, our love for God, and our love for each other. That’s really what every story in the bible demonstrates in some way.
I mean, look at Jesus. Jesus is an amazing guy, really. He comes onto the scene seemingly out of nowhere. He doesn’t run for office. He doesn’t raise an army. He doesn’t start any businesses. He spends all his time teaching, healing, and showing compassion and love towards people nobody else will. (Oh yeah, and he rose from the dead. That was pretty awesome too.) But when asked what are the most important of the Ten Commandments, he boils it all down and says to love God and love each other. Do that and you’ve got life pretty much covered. Such a simple message, yet so big that it completely changes the entire course of history. As the great prophet St. Huey Louis said: That’s the power of love.
So didn’t Jesus say a bunch of stuff about the end times? Yeah, there’s a few paragraphs on it, but I find it interesting how he does it. He purposely does not give a date. Actually he can’t give a date because he said even he doesn’t know it! Only God does. Instead he simply tells us to always be prepared for his return, meaning we should not sit and try to figure out when Dad is coming home so we can screw off until 10 minutes before then. That would be our normal tendency wouldn’t it? No, he says we should live moral lives, 100% of the time. That’s the lesson here and it’s a lesson taught out of love and concern for us. The end of time is not a threat, it’s just a fact, and so Jesus merely tells us to do what’s right, every day.
So if Christianity is all about love, why are so many Christians such jerks? Well, I can’t explain the actions or words of people. I think people are motivated by many different things. But I do know the actions and words of Christ, because they are written down for us. And below I’ve included some links for those who are so inclined to read for themselves what Christianity is really about. I guarantee there are no threatening billboards involved.