This is a very real question today. Recent polls have shown that the majority of Pastors (89%) believe we are living in the End Times. A poll of 1225 US Adults were asked if they believed we are in the final days on this earth. Twenty-nine percent said yes. Further, in the event of an apocalypse, only 43% were confident they could survive more than a week.
The end of days or End-Times can be seen throughout Scripture, both in the Old Testament and the New. Chapters such as Ezekiel 36-39, Daniel 7-12, Zechariah 14, Malachi 4, Matthew 24-25, John 14, 1 Thessalonians 1,4-5, 2 Thessalonians 2, 2 Peter 3, and the book of Revelation, to name some of the major references.
The reality of all life on this earth ending is not a question of “if”, but “when”. The exact timing remains a mystery. However, the Bible does offer insight into conditions prior to our global demise. Matthew 24:8 speaks of false prophets, the love of Believers growing cold, loss of traditional morals, natural disasters, significant drop in practicing Christians, famines, and Anti-Semitism.
So, if we are living in the final days, how will the end come? I would offer three general categories to answer that question:
Over an Extended Period of Time
Some believe it will start with a financial crash (stock market for example). It would then continue with physical disruptions (earthquakes and floods). Finally we would experience a political upheaval (loss of freedom) under the guise of protection and paternalism. This would include a loss of the dollar as the world currency, and China recalling American bonds and T-Bills. It could also start with a pandemic much deadlier than COVID, or a Climate Apocalypse, or Genetic Engineering in the areas of CRISPR, RFID chips, etc.
An End Times Trigger Event
A Biblical Christian View
Finally, there is the Biblical Christian viewpoint that encapsulates both the potentials above. We really don’t know how the Lord will perfect His will. One sees the signs of what Scripture refers to as the coming of a one-world government, a one-world currency, and a one-world religion in place during the end-times. For the Christian, the question is: will we still be around when the Tribulation starts, or will we already be Raptured?
Just how bad things will get before we leave this earth, either individually or collectively, remains to be seen. However, there are clear signs that we are running out of time. Scripture refers to our lives as a mist or a vapor (James 4:14) that disappears. Whether we believe the world is ending or just that we have no assurance of the longevity of our own lives, there should be a sense of urgency in our actions to see our loved ones come into a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.
In Matthew, a Pharisee asked Jesus what is the greatest commandment in the law of Moses (the Old Testament). Jesus responded in Matthew 22:37-40 by saying that we need to love the Lord and our neighbor. In Luke 10:29-37 our neighbor was clearly defined to include everyone, including our enemies.
We know the Greatest Commandment is to love everyone (Matthew 5:43-48) and we believe that life on the other side of the grave is eternal. We should, therefore, be sharing the gospel message with our friends, our co-workers, our families, and even our enemies, as we see the end approaching.