But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need
that I write unto you. For yourselves know perfectly
that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night.
For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction
cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child;
and they shall not escape. But ye, brethren, are not in darkness,
that that day should overtake you as a thief. Ye are all the children of light,
and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness.
Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober.
For they that sleep sleep in the night; and they that be drunken are drunken in the night.
–1 Thessalonians 5:1-7 (KJV)
It seems that many Christians, if not most, who believe we are already in or rapidly approaching the end times–especially those of us who spend a lot of time looking at current events through lenses like the New World Order concept–are always on the lookout for major, tumultuous events and global cataclysms. And, yes–of course there is a biblical basis for watching for signs like wars, rumors of war, and natural disasters as the “beginnings of the birth pangs,” as indications that, for example, the emergence of the false prophet and the revealing of the Antichrist may be near.
But let’s stop and think for a moment. What about that passage above that says that says “the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night. For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them?”
We look at what we see as signs of an apparent–and seemingly rather sudden–escalation of blatant evil in the world, like a zombie eating someone’s face off, or a formerly respected public figure being exposed as a rabid pedophile, and conclude that, perhaps, a new level of diabolical influence has been loosed in the world as the last days near.
But could we be making a mistake by looking at the blatant, the appalling, the cataclysmic? Could it be that, instead, it is gradual, incremental change that people barely notice that will be the true mechanism for the setup of the great deception, the strong delusion, the great falling away, and the emergence of the beast system?
In Genesis we read not that the serpent was the most blatantly, obviously evil creature in the garden, but, rather, that he was the most subtle creature. Could it be that the big things are diversions, and that what we really should be watchful of are little, gradual, subtle changes that could slowly but surely lull us back to a sense of complacency–especially if we begin to see a wind-down to something more like what we once knew as “normalcy” after a period so tumultuous as the last five or so years?
What if we, counter-intuitively, and without first passing through some major calamity, soon find ourselves back in social and economic circumstances that are beginning to restore a sense of “peace and safety” that many of us may have had a few years ago?
I’m really beginning to wonder.