Living in the Days of Noah & Lot

I was recently informed by a local pastor that Christ would not return in our lifetimes. Intrigued, I asked why not. He said that the prophecies had not all been fulfilled. This may be so, but my lifetime might well extend beyond his and I think we should expect the Day sooner rather than later.

In our Bible Study last week, we considered the passage from Luke 17 in which the Lord Jesus says:

26 And as it was in the days of Noah, so it will be also in the days of the Son of Man: 27 They ate, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and the flood came and destroyed them all. 28 Likewise as it was also in the days of Lot: They ate, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they built; 29 but on the day that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven and destroyed them all. 30 Even so will it be in the day when the Son of Man is revealed.

He gives us two clues about what life on earth will be like in the run-up to the Second Coming: they will resemble the time of Noah and the time of Lot, both characters from the book of Genesis. In verse 27, Jesus describes what Noah’s days were like. They were pretty normal. They married, they ate, they drank. None of these things are wicked in themselves. But Noah, who was a ‘preacher of righteousness’ was ignored and ridiculed. They carried on their lives ignoring Noah’s pleadings and warnings. Today, gospel preaching is generally ignored. They walk on past or heckle if they can be bothered. Street preaching in any other age attracted a crowd and garnered a response. Not now, for we are living in days like those of Noah.

The days of Lot, on the other hand, were characterised by sexual and material excess. Sodom was famed for both its wealth and its sexual deviation. Our society has never been so rich, nor so open-minded towards sexuality. Those who believe in traditional marriage are considered extreme. One political party in Parliament advocates three-way marriages. The distinction between male and female is eroded and sadomasochistic bedroom activities are openly discussed. Pornography is widely used, and its increasingly extreme nature is a real concern to parents and teachers.

Someone in our Bible study rightly pointed out that the descriptions of Britain in the twenty-first century are not applicable to all countries. No-one would suggest that Iran is sexually liberal or Cuba obsessed with the acquisition of personal wealth. Western nations, however, have a tireless desire to export their values, be it their legal system, means of selecting government, economics, and attitudes to sexuality. British embassies are instructed to fly the rainbow ‘Gay Pride’ flags to encourage host nations to accommodate alternative lifestyles.

Societies vary between the characterisation of Noah’s day and Lot’s. Ours, I believe, combines the two, preparing for the coming of the Lord. Our global reach must surely means that Christ is coming soon.