Last Things

God, in His own time and in His own way, will bring the world to its appropriate end where the unrighteous will be consigned to Hell and the righteous will dwell forever with the Lord.

Palmdale Church: Last Things

God, in His own time and in His own way, will bring the world to its appropriate end. According to His promise, Jesus Christ will return personally and visibly in glory to the earth; the dead will be raised; and Christ will judge all men in righteousness. The unrighteous will be consigned to Hell, the place of everlasting punishment. The righteous in their resurrected and glorified bodies will receive their reward and will dwell forever in Heaven with the Lord.

Isaiah 2:4; 11:9; Matthew 16:27; 18:8-9; 19:28; 24:27,30,36,44; 25:31-46; 26:64; Mark 8:38; 9:43-48; Luke 12:40,48; 16:19-26; 17:22-37; 21:27-28; John 14:1-3; Acts 1:11; 17:31; Romans 14:10; 1 Corinthians 4:5; 15:24-28,35-58; 2 Corinthians 5:10; Philippians 3:20-21; Colossians 1:5; 3:4; 1 Thessalonians 4:14-18; 5:1ff.; 2 Thessalonians 1:7ff.; 2; 1 Timothy 6:14; 2 Timothy 4:1,8; Titus 2:13; Hebrews 9:27-28; James 5:8; 2 Peter 3:7ff.; 1 John 2:28; 3:2; Jude 14; Revelation 1:18; 3:11; 20:1-22:13.

Does God care about all of the evil humans perpetrate in our world, and if so, what is He doing about it? In this video, we trace the different ways that God confronts human evil and the even deeper spiritual evil that underlies it. Ultimately, we see how Jesus fulfills this storyline and overcomes evil by allowing it to defeat him.

Day of the Lord, The Bible Project

The doctrine of the last things describes the final outworking of God’s purposes and activity, as well as human and angelic destiny, at the end of the present age and the dawning of the age to come.

The doctrine of last things—“eschatology”—is often viewed as a uniquely difficult or unclear set of doctrines. Sometimes it is even seen as an optional doctrine, one we ought to leave to the very end and get to only if we have enough time. But the doctrine of last things puts the capstone on everything one does in Christian doctrine, because nothing ever really makes sense until we see how it turns out. While the course of world history and the ways of God with his creatures are still in process, we cannot yet describe fully what they are.

In Christian theology, though, we have a unique situation: the final thing, the one who is the first and the last, Jesus Christ, has already come in the middle of history and has made known to us the key things we need to understand about eschatology. The Old Testament promised that at the end of the world there would be the coming of the Messiah, the pouring out of the Spirit, and the resurrection of the dead.

In Christian theology we begin with the fact that right in the middle of history the Messiah came, the Spirit was poured out, and the dead rose (at least one of the dead; 1 Cor 15:20). When we are doing Christian eschatology we are reflecting on the final implications of the goal toward which human history is moving. The end actually happened in the middle.

Another dynamic to bear in mind in eschatology is that it includes two poles: personal eschatology (where you go in the end, heaven or hell), and cosmic eschatology (what will happen to the world). This cosmic eschatology brings us to categories like the kingdom of God and even the general resurrection from the dead. And of course, there is a gap between personal eschatology and cosmic eschatology: you may die while the world continues rolling along, in which case you will enter what is called the “intermediate state.” In other words, where do you go and what is your state in that intermediate time between when you die and the end of the world?

The other major topics that need to be considered under the doctrine of eschatology are the entire vast biblical teaching on the kingdom of God; the doctrine of life after death; and the blessed hope, Christ’s second coming. All of these doctrines come under the heading of Christian eschatology, the doctrine of the last things.

Fred Sanders, “The Doctrine of the Last Things,” in Lexham Survey of Theology, ed. Mark Ward et al. (Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press, 2018).