One day closer? What a revelation! One day closer? I pondered the thought with deep intensity. Could it be true that this world would soon be history? That someday the hustle and bustle of life for daily bread, the wars, guns, violence, rampant immorality, selfishness, and wickedness will soon be a distance memory? Are we really that close to eternity?
As a Seventh-day Adventist Christian, I have always believed in the visible, powerful appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ in the clouds. However, this is not a distinctive doctrine for Adventists. Billions of Christians in all ages from diverse cultures, ethnicities, and statuses have looked forward to the blessed hope as the culmination of their dreams. So what makes this doctrine uniquely Adventist?
What? Me? The book of Revelation? You must be kidding!
Often called a closed, enigmatic book; full of symbols, scary beasts, and the dreaded 666—for most Christians Revelation is not the first or even the second book of choice for bedtime light reading, much less a Bible study.
This is one reason why I love being an Adventist. I have always enjoyed Bible study. Hands down, Adventists have been truly blessed with a plethora of spiritual resources and a great deal of Bible knowledge. So I plugged myself into research and Bible study. I was certain this was a good opportunity to dust off the cobwebs in my Bible knowledge and fill in the gaps on texts I never quite understood.
Little did I realize that my journey into the book of Revelation would bring fresh discoveries. As I studied, comparing Revelation with Ezekiel, pooling Old Testament prophecies to unlock end-time symbols, suddenly it all came to me! God has written the final chapter. The battle has been won. I only need to rest in my Savior’s love and faithfulness as He gives me strength every day to be victorious, to grow in His grace, and to share His love. As I studied more, I drank fresh draughts of living water from God’s Word, falling in love with Jesus again.
You see, the Advent message gives life a richer meaning. It is simple; it is balanced; and it makes sense. With the central focus of the three angels’ messages, it speaks to the heart of every man, woman, and child questioning the whys of life. It gives meaning to the confusion in our world with the backdrop of the great controversy. It erases the fear of judgment and hellfire because we know that our heavenly Father’s heart yearns for all His wayward children to come home. It brings balance and purpose to the everyday grind with the gift of a day to rest and commune with our Creator. It makes sense of the plays and counter-plays of end-time news headlines.
And best of all, it is full of hope. Hope in the resurrection morning. Hope of our Lord’s glorious and earth-shattering return. Hope for the end of pain, grief, goodbyes, and death. This is the hope that the world is thirsting to know. This is what defines our mission as an end-time movement. This is why I love being an Adventist.
Hallelujah! The glorious dawn of the reign of righteousness will soon begin. Every morning brings me one day closer to His return. So no matter how painful the cross I am carrying or the trial I am facing, I can whisper in faith, “It’s going to be OK. Jesus will soon be here. Yes, He is almost here. I’m one day closer.”
Maranatha! Let Him come.