During our Eschatology Lecture last Saturday with Pastor Noel Landicho, a victory group leader approached me with an interesting question. He asked why we need to study the end times in the first place. To him, it sounded like all these things all boil down to having head knowledge.
I can understand where the question was coming from. If you’ve attended Victory for quite a while, you must have noticed that we always trumpet relevance and practical application in our preaching. Even our church events (like Marriage Boosters or Finance seminars) all point back to how we can apply the Word in our lives today. We are a church that doesn’t spend much time speculating the nuances of doctrines. Instead of debating the validity of, say, infant baptism, we’d rather go and preach the gospel to the nations.
So why preach on eschatology now? Where’s the practical application in that?
Well, maybe not a direct application but as Pastor Gilbert Foliente (Victory U-Belt) emphasized, learning these things is good for the soul. Every now and then, it is necessary to learn of something that just expands the breadth of your understanding of the things of God. It may not directly push you to start doing something practical but it ultimately gives you a high view of God, His majesty and His power.
You see, when you study about how world history is going to be wrapped up, you are going to have a preview of the ultimate triumph of good over evil. All your anguished prayers about whatever has gone wrong in the world will finally be addressed. The problem of sin and suffering will all come to a screeching halt. Satan will finally be out of the picture.
Like a master story teller, God will tie all the lose strands of history. The closing chapters of this world and of mortal men will all build toward a rising crescendo that ultimately leads to a magnificent and satisfying end.
To me, that’s one reason why eschatology makes sense. This knowledge of how this world is going to end helps me make godly choices now, helps me treasure things that last and let go of things that are temporary. Yes this is mostly head knowledge but this is the kind of knowledge that leads you to right living.