What I say to you, I say to everyone: ‘Watch!’
I remember my pastor from several years ago saying something like, “I believe it is getting very close to the time when Jesus returns.” I don’t remember exactly what he was preaching about, but he looked at the signs of the times and concluded it must be very close! He was nearing retirement and had served long and faithfully and I can imagine him thinking, ‘surely it must be pretty soon when the King returns; it’s been 60 odd years already since I was born – can’t be too much longer now!’
However, sometimes I find myself thinking almost the opposite… I’m relatively young (several decades off retirement age) and I often catch myself thinking, ‘I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s still hundreds of years before The Day of the Lord.’ Is that thinking because of my age, or is it something else?
Or is it because it’s been nearly 2000 years since he ascended and what’s another few hundred years in comparison?
God is an incredibly patient God!
Now, no good comes from speculating and guessing or even calculating the King’s return (Mark 13:31), but what does Jesus mean when he says, watch?
If it’s not looking out the window for a flash of lightning that brings the clouds of heaven; or constantly having your ear to the door for a trumpet blast that announces the arrival of the King, then what is it?
There are several words that are used in Mark 13… be alert, stay awake, be on guard… watch! If these aren’t literal, physical commands then they must be spiritual. Stay spiritually awake; let your spirit be watching and preparing and making ready for its saviour to arrive. Go on repenting and living by faith.
In other words: persevere; endure; hold on to the end.
What is certain, is that King Jesus is on his way back. On that day there will be a remnant that is faithful and has been ‘watching’ diligently for his return.
Will we be one of them?