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The Second Coming: It’s Not the End of the World
One of the difficult tasks of all Bible students is to harmonize texts that seems, at first glance, to say contradictory things. When comparing the following texts which one determines the meaning of the other?
” . . . the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the freedom and glory of the children of God.” (Rom. 8:21)
“The heavens will disappear with a roar; the elements will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and everything done in it will be laid bare.” (2 Pet. 3:10)
I have chosen to buck the seemingly predominate view of the total annihilation of the earth, by teaching that the fire of 2 Peter 3 (literal or not, I don’t know) will purge all evil thus enabling the liberation of the earth to finally be what Isaiah, 2 Peter, and Revelation all refer to as the “new earth.” The End Times pictures that I get most excited about come from the book of Isaiah. The new earth is seen as a place where fear has no presence, where current unnatural alliances are completely natural, where war is no longer a reality, and the predominate emotion is joy. Peter seems to have no quarrel with this as he borrows Isaiah’s phrase “new heavens and new earth” when speaking of what happens after Jesus returns (See 2 Peter 3:13 and Isaiah 65:17).
No wonder the earliest Christians prayed, “Maranatha!”, which means “Come, Lord Jesus!”