What is really of top importance? Most people don't seem to know. They just don't "get it"!
The majority of people in our western culture spend vast amounts of time and money studying and learning about how to make money, how to improve their health, how to "get ahead." They seem oblivious to the fact that we are near the end of 6,000 years of human experience-that we are now near the END of an age. They are ignorant of the fact that the Great GOD of Creation will intervene SOON and set up a world-ruling kingdom based on His eternal, immutable spiritual laws. This, of course, will CHANGE everything.
So what is really important?
Jesus Christ said, "But seek FIRST the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you" (Matthew 6:33). If our relationship with God is correct, then He will see to it that we have plenty to eat and to wear-that all our material needs will be taken care of. For God is REAL and His coming Kingdom will soon really be set up on this earth with world Headquarters at Jerusalem! God's Word tells us that in the latter days: "Many people shall come and say, 'Come, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob; He will teach us His ways, and we shall walk in His paths.' For out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem" (Isaiah 2:1-3).
The most vital knowledge concerns this coming, world-ruling government. That is why Jesus Himself constantly preached this message: "Now after John was put in prison, Jesus came to Galilee, preaching the gospel of the KINGDOM OF GOD, and saying, 'The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel'" (Mark 1:14-15).
Although we at Tomorrow's World will be helping you understand the meaning of world events and where we are in the fulfillment of biblical prophecy, we all need to realize that this is secondary to our spiritual preparation for the coming Kingdom of God. After describing a number of character traits we should be developing, the Apostle Peter was inspired to write, "Therefore, brethren, be even more diligent to make your calling and election sure, for if you DO THESE THINGS you will never stumble; for so an entrance will be supplied to you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ" (2 Peter 1:10-11).
If any of us refuse to totally surrender to let Jesus Christ live His life within us through the power of the Holy Spirit (Galatians 2:20), we will NOT be in the Kingdom of God. For the true God will not countenance a bunch of self-willed rebels entering His eternal Kingdom and Family! So we must dedicate ourselves to building virtue, knowledge, self-control, perseverance, godliness, brotherly kindness and LOVE (2 Peter 1:5-7). We must actively do our part and zealously yield to God so that He may place within us His very divine nature-the very nature of Christ and the Father (v. 4).
Although it is interesting and helpful to understand the intricacies of END-time prophecy-and we will help you do this-it is FAR more important to develop the very CHARACTER of Jesus Christ so that we will "be there" when the Kingdom of God is set up here on earth!
Over the course of my 50 years in the Work of God, I have encountered many "prophecy nuts"-as they are sometimes called. These are folks who go way overboard and devote most if not all their Bible study to prophecy. They spend countless hours poring over chronological charts wherein they try to predict the exact date of Christ's return to this earth, and other such matters.
I have noticed in some religious publications that some of these would-be prophets have CHANGED their dates for Christ's return at least two or three times! As one man commented, "If they keep setting new dates, they will probably accidentally hit the right one sometime!" These people seem to have forgotten that the Son of God specifically told us, "But of that day and hour no one knows, NOT even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. Take heed, watch and pray; for you do not know when the time is" (Mark 13:32-33).
The Living Christ also inspired the Apostle Paul to tell us: "And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing" (1 Corinthians 13:2). So just understanding prophecy of and by itself will NOT help us that much. We may learn about a "place of safety" but we will not be taken there UNLESS the true Christ is living within us. We may understand the basic order of events preceding Christ's coming or perhaps eventually even realize the probable year of His return (not the day and hour!). But we will definitely not be "in" God's Kingdom unless we are filled with and led by God's Holy Spirit (Romans 8:14) and filled with His LOVE-the very love of God.
Paul tells us, "Now hope does not disappoint, because the LOVE OF GOD has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us" (Rom. 5:5). And the Apostle John was inspired to explain to us, "For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments. And His commandments are not burdensome" (1 John 5:3). Therefore, we must recognize that GOD'S "priority" is NOT technical knowledge of the Bible or of prophecy-although that is important. Rather, God's priority is the development of GODLY CHARACTER for every prospective Son of God.
True Godly character is based first of all on LOVE-worship, obedience and adoration of God, and out-flowing concern, kindness and affection for our fellow human beings. Those are the two GREAT commandments (Matthew 22:35-40). They are further explained and magnified by the Ten Commandments which tell us how to love God and our fellow man. In turn, the Ten Commandments are further magnified by the teachings of Christ and the apostles in the New Testament.
So in the pages of this magazine you will often find powerful, revealing articles about the details of Bible prophecy. These biblical prophecies describe primarily the series of events leading up to the return of Christ and the establishment of the Kingdom of God on earth. But of even greater importance are our articles explaining THE WAY to enter that glorious Kingdom. For that precious knowledge has been essentially LOST to modern professing Christianity. As explained in the lead article beginning on page 4, the need to restore Apostolic Christianity is vital for our salvation and our eternity.
For all the knowledge in the world about prophetic details regarding Christ's coming Kingdom will not get you there! Let us therefore heed Christ's instruction to seek "first" the Kingdom of God and HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS.