December 21: The End of the World?
IT’S WORTH CONSIDERING
Last year I spent a couple weeks in Mayan country in the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico. I
learned where the name “Yucatan” came from. According to our tour guide, the officer in charge of the Spanish Conquistadors was trying to communicate with the Mayan leader. He did his best to ask him what the local name was for the region. The Mayan leader turned to his fellow representative and said something resembling, “This guy talks funny.” In Mayan it sounded like Yucatan. The rest is history. No kidding.
As interesting as this story is, it doesn’t come close to the Mayan calendar’s 2012 prediction. Some think it points to the end of the world on December 21, 2012. They point to the fact that the Mayans lasted a very long time and knew what they were talking about. Their origin can be traced back to around 2,500 B.C, and their descendents remain today in Mexico, Honduras, and Guatemala. They ruled most of Latin America for several thousand years. That’s impressive! They still speak the Mayan language and many of them are aware of their calendar’s prediction. They are expecting something to happen this December 21.
The Jesus Film Project is taking full advantage of this. This ministry of Campus Crusade for Christ (now called “Cru”) has teams ministering to the Mayans. Local Pastor Gamaliel Gonzelez has partnered with the Jesus film Project to reach the locals with “The Story of Jesus for Children,” an adaptation of “Jesus” for children in their native language. According to Pastor Gama, “They are so anxious to know what will happen, to know the unknown. So, just as the Apostle Paul addressed the citizens of Athens, referring to the altar of an unknown god, I talk to the people about their famous calendar.
“I tell them December 21, 2012 is not the end of time, but a moment of new beginning, and most importantly, that they can know the God of new beginnings today. That’s when I introduce them to ‘The Story of Jesus for Children.’ It’s perfect in its simplicity to reach the Mayans. They become captivated… amazed…they don’t move. The people are crushed when He is crucified, and rejoice when He gloriously returns from the dead, so happy.”
AS I SEE IT
The world goes crazy over predictions like this. Many are scared to death. Others are
convinced something bad is going to happen. This is where believers should enter the picture. We have a book that has been predicting the future with 100% accuracy for over 2000 years. It says nothing about the world ending this December. In fact, there are some very specific things that must happen before anything cataclysmic takes place. We know from the book of Revelation and the Olivet Discourse (Matthew 24 & 25) that the Temple in Jerusalem must be rebuilt and the Antichrist must come on the scene before the “sky starts falling.” Even after the earth is nearly destroyed during the 7-yearTribulation, Jesus will restore it in preparation for the 1000 year Millennial Kingdom during which Christ shall reign right here on earth.
Even the Mayans never actually predicted the earth would end. December 21, 2012 was simply as far as their calendar went. If there really is something significant about this date, it could be transitional. What it transitions into is up to us.
I think the Jesus Film Project has the right idea. Let’s make it a spiritual turning point- for us and those around us. Let’s ask God to point us to someone who needs to hear the transforming message of the gospel. Let’s make December 21, 2012 a turning point like no other.
ON THE LIGHTER SIDE
In the 60s people took acid to make the world weird. Now the world is weird and people take Prozac to make it normal.