Serendipity

This is an interesting word.  It is difficult to define, but basically it describes something that comes about unexpectedly that is good.  Why would I include it in a list of Bible subjects?  It is not a word used in the Bible.  However I think it describes an event that is due to happen that most people will not be expecting.  Thus I think it fits.

          The Bible describes a grand and glorious event that will take place at the second coming of Christ.  It is a grand kingdom of righteousness that he will set up at that time.  There seems to be many Christian people who see that mentioned in the Bible but fail to understand what it is talking about.  It will be a surprise to most people.  I think that makes it a serendipitous event.

          This is what Christians have been praying for during the last 2000 years. “Thy Kingdom come thy will be done on earth as it is in Heaven”.  Most folks seem to be unclear about “the Kingdom of God”.  We all recognize that there is a time coming when “the knowledge of the Lord will cover the earth as the waters cover the seas” Isaiah 11:9 & Habakkuk 2:14.  We expect resurrection day when “all that are in there graves will hear his  voice and come forth” John 5:28 & 29.  This will be that grand serendipitous event that some look forward to, but many don’t seem to see at all. This scripture does say that those that have done good will have a resurrection of life and those that have done evil will have a resurrection of judgment. This judgment will be the Millennial Age.  This will be for all that are not with Jesus.  All who now are not expecting and looking forward to that happening will be pleasantly surprised. Isaiah chapter 35 tells about it. Chapter 34 tells of the time of trouble that precedes it.

          I am not alone when I say that the Bible clearly teaches that the one thousand year kingdom of Christ, the Millennial Age, will see all people brought back to life and walking up “the Highway of Holiness” seeking to gain everlasting life.  Charles Russell was not the first to recognize that, but he was the most prominent.  He devoted his life to telling people about it.  I think we all owe him a debt of gratitude.  The common thought seems to be that Jesus’ return will be doomsday for most people, the end of the world. Some seem to think that the planet will go up in a ball of fire.  The Bible does talk about a time of trouble and the end of the world.  The world it is talking about is the social order on this earth.  It will end.  The Devil is the head guy now; he will be bound and not allowed to interfere during the Millennial Age.  At the end of the thousand years he’ll be turned loose for a little while to put the final test on mankind, Rev20:3.  He and those that follow him will be destroyed.  God’s plan will be completed and the earth and its inhabitants will live on forever.  Isn’t that a grand hope?     

          The question here is not whether or not this is a serendipitous event.  What we call it really doesn’t matter.  What does matter is does God really have a plan that will see all the dead resurrected and then will make possible every person will have an opportunity to gain everlasting life? 

          I’ve been told that this is man’s plan not God’s.  I don’t believe that man can come up with a better plan than God can.  There are two thoughts out there.  Here they are.  The one says that when we die we go to either Heaven or Hell. The outcome will be a few of mankind will spent eternity in a state of ecstasy and the rest will be in agony forever. That is the understanding of most people.  They think the Bible teaches it.  It does not, in fact I think it slurs God’s name.  The other plan says that a few of mankind will be with Jesus for a thousand years.  These are the members of Christ’s church that he is selecting in this, the Gospel Age.  Their work in the next age, the Millennial Age, the thousand years of Rev.20:4, is to assist Jesus in helping the rest of mankind to overcome their faults and come into harmony with God and live on a perfected earth forever. The ones that refuse to comply will be destroyed.  Not kept alive in agony. This kingdom will go on forever.  The thousand years is to bring everyone to perfection and harmony with God if they try.  Some seem to think this is too good to be true and to express that thought will encourage people to be bad now because if that is true they will have what detractors call a second chance in the Millennial Age.  I think it is a wonderful plan and what we should expect from a loving God and I think it is what the Bible really teaches. As far as not inspiring people to be good, I don’t know about other people.  All I know is that I have been taught these things since childhood.  I remember my Dad telling everyone that would listen about it.  My thinking was that such a loving God made me want to please him.  It’s kind of like having loving parents and not wanting to disappoint them.  We do have the hope that if we give our all to him we will be with him there.  “If we suffer with him we will reign with him”.

          Let’s continue to pray “thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven”. Let’s look forward with joy and keen expectation to that promised Millennial Age, that great serendipitous event.  The religious leaders have been right in emphasizing Jesus’ great sacrifice for us. But he has more to do.  The Bible says that the last enemy to be destroyed is death. That has yet to be done.  The end of the Millennial Age will see it done.  Let us accept the fact that maybe the religious leaders were wrong when they taught that when one dies they go to either heaven or hell.  As I understand it they go to the grave where they stay dead until resurrection day. And they would stay dead forever if Jesus hadn’t died for them.  I think that is what the Bible teaches.

I will here list some of the scriptures that we look to for these thoughts.  There is some difficulty in picking the best scriptures to use to make points but I will try. It would take a book to do justice to the subject.  Here is a parcel list.   For the thought that he is coming back probably one of the best is John 14:1-3.  That he will set up a kingdom of righteousness at that time; Matt 25:31.  In 1Cor.15:25 it says he must reign until all enemies are put under his feet.  There are lots of places that tell of things to be done during that reign, first the resurrection of the dead.  1Cor. 15:22: also John 5:28.  That his church will reign with him is definitely stated in Rev. 20:6.  It is here stated that they will reign for a thousand years.  1Cor.6:2 says the saints will judge the world.  Rom.1:6 &7 tells us that members of the church  are called saints.  Rev. 20:2 says that the Devil will be bound for a thousand years.  The thousand years we call the Millennial Age.

The purpose of the Millennial Age is to bring all mankind to perfection and harmony with God.  This is probably the most important question discussed here.  I don’t know of a scripture that says that in so many words. That is probably the reason that most people are not expecting it.  Let us begin with the promise of Jesus given in Isaiah 9:6 & 7.  That’s the one that begins with “for unto us a child is born unto us a son is given”.  It goes on to say that the government will be on his shoulders and it will be without end and the judgment and justice will be forever.  It also says that God will do this without our help.  Then I will mention the new covenant that is mentioned in Jeremiah 31:31.  This is a new covenant as opposed to the old covenant which was the law given to Moses and that the Jews were under until Christ came.  This scripture does sound as though this is all done for Israel. However we know that Jesus died for all mankind, John 3:16.  Also it is true that God’s dealing with Israel was allegorical, 1Cor. 10:11.  That is it was an allegory of his dealings with all mankind.  This promise in Jeremiah is speaking of the government promised in Isaiah.  This is talking about the Millennial Age.  Jeremiah 31:29 & 30 is about that time when it says that it will no longer be true “that the fathers have eaten the sour grapes and the children’s teeth are set on edge”.  Then “anyone that eats the sour grapes, his teeth will be set on edge”.  We die now because of Adam’s sin, then any that don’t take part in the blessings offered will die, but it will be because of his own sin.   There will not be another redeemer for them but they will die, not be tortured forever.  Ezekiel 11:19 & 20 says of that day that he will take away people’s stony heart and give them a heart of flesh that they may serve God in an acceptable way.

To those of us that believe these things it will not be a serendipitous event because we expect it.  To everyone else it will be.