Reflections on Revelation – 1

In last Sunday morning’s sermon, our pastor mentioned what might be termed the general optimism about the future of the world up to, say, the mid twentieth century. He noted how this has been replaced in recent decades with a general pessimism, symbolised most notably in the popular consciousness by global warming.

And yet, despite frequent predictions of cataclysm, it struck me that we tend to live our lives almost in complete oblivion to it. In some ways we are like King Hezekiah, who responded to Isaiah’s prediction of disaster by comforting himself that it wouldn’t happen in his lifetime (Isa. 39:8).

However, perhaps our reaction is based on our implicit faith in science. Scientists have revealed this scenario of doom to us, and we trust them to discover the solution. In so doing, we attribute to them an omnipotence they do not possess. We place in them a trust they cannot fulfil. And we give them honour they do not deserve. That is not to denigrate the great ability of many, which has brought much blessing to humankind. But the self-evident fact is that they are not in control of our destiny. God alone is. That is the clear message of the last book in the Bible — Revelation.

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