We should try our best to understand what Ezekiel wrote, and to piece it together with other passages of Scripture that speak of what will happen in the future. Of course, we should always model humility as we try to understand Scripture, but we shouldn’t just shrug our shoulders and say we’ll figure things out one day in the distant future. Pan-millenials (“It will all pan out in the end”) are taking the easy way out. We can do better.
There was a time when people cared — really cared — about eschatology. They held conferences. They formed denominations. They created study Bibles. Thinking about eschatology — the doctrine of what happens in the end times — was a big deal.
No more. I hardly hear anyone talk about end times anymore. In some ways, that’s good. Sometimes we were a little too ready to fight over eschatology before. In other ways, it’s sad. I wonder if we really care as much as we should.
I’m struck by what Paul wrote in 2 Timothy 4:8: “Henceforth there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that day, and not only to me but also to all who have loved his appearing.”
That verse challenges me. Do I love his appearing? Our future with Jesus is meant to be one of the controlling influences in our lives. Do we even think about it, never mind long for it and love it?
If we had a bigger view of what’s to come, I suspect our lives today would be radically different.
I got thinking about this recently as I studied Ezekiel 43. Ezekiel has a vision of our future: God will recreate heaven and earth, and God will dwell with his people once again. Ezekiel’s vision is detailed, and it goes on for many chapters.