When I began attending my current church I found out that there was a weekly prophecy class being taught on Sunday afternoons at the church. I thought that this was a great idea. To be able to get a better understanding of prophecy in the bible was a goal of mine so I decided to try the class out.
My first visit was a little awkward. When I arrived I found that everyone attending was above the age of sixty, (I am being generous here). They also spent a lot of time glancing at me a little suspiciously after welcoming me to the class. I later realized that I had worn my black and white checkered Vans sneakers to the class which probably put them off.
Anyway, I went to the class several times and came away with these conclusions:
1. The person who taught the class seemed to have a good understanding of the content of the bible, but everything taught seemed only to elevate anxiousness about Christ’s imminent return.
2. There was a great reliance placed on YouTube videos from “Sid Roth’s It’s Supernatural” which brought on “guests” that were supposed to be experts in their field proposing various theories about when, and how Jesus will return and who the anti-Christ will be.
3. There was a complete lack of any suggestion to, or urgency for outreach to unbelievers in light of this impending tribulation and return of Jesus. The class seemed to be for the gratification of the believers, not for the lost.
4. There just seemed to be no patience or love extended to people with conflicting views which opposed the views taught.
I did stop attending the class because for me it was not uplifting or educating in any biblical way. It seemed like the class was really just a group of people who were at the end of their age working themselves into a self-satisfying frenzy.
No one including the leader had any expressed desire to give any type of outreach to those who were lost and need the Gospel the very most, especially in light of the prophecy teaching presented there.
I realized the while it is important to be fully informed and educated about prophecy in the bible that is not what Jesus commanded us as his followers to be concerned about. Jesus commanded us to spread the Good News.
“Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”
“And He said to them, ‘Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.’”
Jesus also said the following:
37 Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”
To sum it up Jesus said to go and spread His Good News, to love God with everything you have, and to love everyone else as yourself. I don’t find anywhere in the bible where Jesus tells us to worry and obsess about the end times prophecy in lieu of all other scripture.
Unfortunately I think that this class and many ministries like it succumb to these same paranoid and obsessive pitfalls and forget about what Jesus actually commanded us to do until He returns.
We need to remember what is important to Jesus not ourselves!