a little knowledge…

Eschatology fascinated me as a teenager. It suited my imaginative fantasy driven outlook on life from reading a lot of science fiction, fantasy, mythology, all that stuff. end of times just faded right in. i was rooted in all kinds of books 666, hal lindsey, that weird anti-catholic guy who did the Chic Tracts and bunches more. Then I plunged into the original sources. i had read it all when i plowed through the bible in eighth grade but i went back to the prophets and tried to make since of all that stuff. revelations it was mind blowing. It was also all a little bit scary. i remember in middle school during gym there was a fire drill and there was an impending storm with black roiling clouds and the feeling of electricity in the air. I wondered if if was the end. I don’t have to tell you it wasn’t, it was a storm.

I read more and more for a few more years and was always scrounging books at garage sales. i read some of the older ones and they were dated and the world was supposed to have ended. i found them all the way back to the fifties decade by decade wrong after wrong. i found one in the library from the fourties. it seemed more real, more to fit. I read some history and the millenialists of the year 1000, of the 19th century, in fact every generation has thought they were likely the last generation.

I thought the restoration of the state of israel and man’s new power to destroy the earth made our generation special. israel has been here for 63 years and the ability of man to destroy the earth 66 and it hasn’t happened yet. i looked into one of the books and checked back to their scripture on the israel thing. its a verse about figs. Vague fear mongering seems more likely to sell books, draw attention, and baffle the young and gullible and perhaps the mentally ill. and yet the prophets mean something don’t they?

In some sense they serve as a warning to make the most of every day. to treat it like it could be your last even if you are young and healthy. the promise of the return is part of what makes jesus jesus. but if i know jesus at all the return won’t be like anything anyone in the established church is saying, or how else will they all miss it, and i guarantee they will. they always do or we wouldn’t need divine intervention.

i think talk of an antichrist and a mark and such reminds us of the continual threat of totalitarianism. when one man controls all power to buy and sell there is total control and it is indeed time to flee to the mountains and prepare for the rivers to run with blood. i believe there will be a narrowing and consequences for our misbehavior, my god we’ve broken the weather. spurned the gift of a functioning biosphere and poisoned what we’ve given. katrina, might have been a warning, did we heed its warning. not some simplistic anti voodoo and drunkenness nonsense, i am talking about the sin of destruction. i can see seeds of the apocalypse, but also seeds of the beauty that is to come when we come to our senses and start living right. we’ll get sustainable or we will die by definition. my vote is for life and i choose every day to look for the signs of hope so that i can nurture them. that i can light a fire or provide a little air, a little fuel so it burns brighter and it spreads and throws its light and its warmth and its cleansing.

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