Our news reports—and the world’s top-secret intelligence reports probably even more so—reflect a dangerous world. Dozens of hot spots seem ready to explode into wider violence. Weapons of mass destruction are falling into the hands of despots and terrorist groups. Tensions between races, nations and groups of nations seem to be continually increasing. But what would an outsider see? What if today’s world were part of a science fiction story? What would a visitor from the stars see? All the same problems, of course, but perhaps a different perspective would give a chance for the visitor to see more clearly the patterns of human behavior that have led to these predicaments. Consider this description of our time that comes from a perspective beyond the human sphere: “In the last days perilous times will come: for men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power” (2 Timothy 3:1-5). The apostle Paul, 2,000 years in advance, nailed this list of many of the causes of humanity’s ills. God’s Spirit showed clearly the things we are doing that are making our world more dangerous by the minute. “No one would survive” Jesus Christ’s disciples knew even then that the world was getting worse and worse, and would finally reach a point where these and other evils would crescendo to a final climax. Jesus had told them He would return to begin a new age of peace. So they asked this Man (who they knew was also God in the flesh), “When will this happen, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?” (Matthew 24:3, New International Version). Jesus’ answer was breathtaking in its scope, but one phrase surely caught their ears. “For then there will be great distress, unequalled from the beginning of the world until now—and never to be equaled again. If those days had not been cut short, no one would survive, but for the sake of the elect those days will be shortened” (Matthew 24:21-22, NIV). The future of humanity was at stake! Jesus Christ identified the time of His return as a time when human extinction was possible. But He promised He wouldn’t let that happen! His feet will stand… Jesus Christ will literally return to this earth! In the same way the disciples saw Christ ascend into the clouds after His resurrection, He will return through the clouds to this earth, this time with power and great glory (Acts 1:11; Matthew 24:30). That’s the biggest news story in history—especially since if He did not come, human history would end. Mankind continues to find more ways that we can obliterate every man, woman and child off the face of the earth. Biblical prophecy describes in detail the time of great distress, or tribulation, that will envelope the earth. Wars, disasters, famines and disease epidemics will decimate the population. Finally, when the nations of the world gather for battle at a place called Armageddon (Revelation 16:14, 16), Christ must swiftly intervene before it is too late. Sadly, the nations will not recognize or welcome their Savior, but will fight Him. “Then the LORD will go forth and fight against those nations, as He fights in the day of battle. And in that day His feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, which faces Jerusalem on the east” (Zechariah 14:3-4). The battle will be over swiftly, ending the painful age of human misrule. Finally, a new day will dawn—a day fresh with the promise of peace and fulfillment, of joy and purpose, of happiness and accomplishment. The nightmares of history will fade, and the dreams of mankind will begin to come to life. The biggest news story in history: CHRIST RETURNS! In summary, consider the facts of this incredible news story. Who: Jesus Christ, who came the first time to pay the penalty for our sins to become our Savior, returns to put an end to sin as our King (Revelation 11:15)! What: Christ puts an end to human misrule and sets up the long-promised Kingdom of God (Daniel 2:44). When: In the nick of time before humanity destroys itself (Matthew 24:22). Christ gave signs to identify the end time, but did not reveal the “day and hour” (Matthew 24:36). Where: Starting with Jerusalem, this Kingdom will spread over the whole earth (Zechariah 14:3-4; Acts 1:11-12; Matthew 5:5; Revelation 5:10; Daniel 2:35). Why: Christ returns because it is part of God’s plan to show love for everyone, to bring many children to glory (John 3:16; 2 Peter 3:9; Hebrews 2:10). How: God’s laws—the way He designed the universe to work—will be taught and will bring real peace and prosperity, but most of all a loving family relationship, to all the world (Isaiah 2:2-4). “Your Kingdom come!” The time after Christ’s return will be wonderful beyond imagination! No wonder Christians have always prayed “Your Kingdom come!” At the end of the book, Jesus Christ tells us, “Surely I am coming quickly.” And we fervently respond with the apostle John, “Even so, come, Lord Jesus!” (Revelation 22:20). The events leading up to Christ’s return are described in detail in several of our brochures. For more information, download or request your free copies of The Middle East in Bible Prophecy, Are We Living in the Time of the End? and The Book of Revelation Unveiled. Look for further articles in this series in upcoming issues.