Bruce Collins, Evangelist

The personal website of Bruce Collins

Reading, Hearing, Guarding


Blessed is he who reads (probably publicly) and those who hear the words of this prophecy, and keep (guard) those things which are written in it; for the time is near (always ready). (Revelation 1:3 NKJV)

The Pandemic

Because of the coronavirus, there is a lot of interest in the prophetic plan of God.  People want to know if this pandemic is the judgment of God on the world for its decline into immorality.  Is this pandemic part of the plagues that will come about before the Lord sets up His kingdom?

The Answer to these Questions

You can go on the internet and pick your preference as to the prophetic program of God.  Speaking and writing on prophetic events, particularly the “signs of the times,” is always a popular topic.  But what does the Bible really say about the future?  What happens when the apparent signs of the Lord’s return are not fulfilled by His coming in the immediate future as has been the case down through history?

For the Christian, the future is eternal life–whatever that entails.  It starts upon believing or trusting the Lord for salvation, but it continues forever.  It is far better than condemnation and the wrath of God which is the future for those who reject the Lord Jesus Christ and His sacrificial death on the cross. 

The Bible has a lot of easy verses.  One of those is John 3:18, "He who believes in Him (the Lord) is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name (or authority) of the only begotten Son of God.”  These are the words of the Lord Himself.  John the Baptist recaps this chapter in verse 36, “He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him (presently).”  These verses seem reasonably easy to understand and if you are reading them with me, do not let anyone explain them away.  If the plain sense makes sense, seek no other sense. 

The Prophetic Plan for this Earthly Society

The book of the Revelation of Jesus Christ has always been a great encouragement to the believer.  It shows that Good or Holy Friday was not the end of the story.  After the crucifixion, there was the resurrection, which many are still denying.  Forty days after the resurrection, there was the ascension into heaven, which many did not see.  But the Lord is going to come and when He does, every eye shall behold Him.  This will not be a coming of comfort and joy.  Nor will it be a coming where the Lord seems to lose the fight.  This is the Lord’s coming as a victorious King.    Revelation 1:7 says, “Behold, He is coming with clouds, and every eye will see Him, even they (the people of those nations) who pierced Him. And all the tribes of the earth will mourn because of Him. Even so, Amen.”

The Blessing of Reading and Hearing

The Lord has placed a special blessing on the reading (probably reading aloud) and the hearing of this book (that is paying attention and trying to understand).  It is a book that many have tried to explain, but rather than explaining it we need to accept it.  Reading it will be scary starting with Chapter 6 and going through chapter 19.  The first chapter is a vision of the Lord as a judge.  The next two chapters are messages and warnings to seven congregations that existed at that time and that likely represent congregations that exist now.  The next two chapters deal with worship in heaven.  And then come the judgments on this earth.  Chapter 20 deals with the Lake of Fire judgment on Satan and his followers.  We would call them unbelievers, but they were believers.  They just believed Satan, the great deceiver, rather than God.  Chapters 21 and 22 deal with a restoration of the paradise that was once enjoyed in the Garden of Eden.

Now how will all that play out?  I frankly do not know.  I just know that the only way to be prepared is to come by faith as a sinner to the Savior who loves to save sinners.  But I would also encourage all of us to read and hear the words of this prophecy.  If you are saved, you will be glad that you are saved from the “wrath to come” (1 Thessalonians 1:10).  If you are unsaved, you should recognize that this pandemic may be the least of your worries.  Even though we might not fully understand what is symbolic and what is literal in this book, the general message is simply that the world that follows Satan and His lies is going to face pandemics (plagues), famines, war (likely nuclear), and natural disasters that none of us would want our worst enemies to go through.

The time is near in the sense of being always ready.  The Lord comes quickly when He comes which means that the events associated with the Lord’s second coming happen suddenly.  His second coming involves the rapture of the church, the seven years of tribulation, the revelation of the Lord as the rightful King of Israel and of the world.  Suddenly may refer to seven literal years of the tribulation rather than to the two millennium that has passed since the promise was made. Hopefully, the pandemic will give us all time to read and meditate on this great book which is “the rest of the story.”

Bruce Collins

Meditation for the week of April 26, 2020

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