Profiting From Fear

Joe R. Price

Fear swept over the face of the earth this week as the prospect of nuclear meltdown looms in Japan. From Japan to America to Europe and beyond, the fear of a nuclear reactor meltdown of catastrophic proportions caused Americans to buy potassium iodide pills (anticipating radiation fallout) and Germans to shut down their pre-1980 nuclear reactors. And so it goes.

Fear turns to profit for some as they see the disasters in Japan as an opportunity to make money or advance a cause or agenda. “Never let a disaster go to waste” has been echoed by some.

End of the world enthusiasts are confident the end is near. Rapture preachers and judgment day calculators are working hard to convince folks with their false predictions (See “Armageddon Entrepreneurs: Who’s Profiting From Fear?”, Jeffrey Weiss, ).

Will the end of the world occur? Yes. Do we know when? No (Matt 24:42). Should that make us complacent toward spiritual responsibilities? No, it should prompt just the opposite. We must “watch and be ready” by living faithfully, because we do not know when the Lord will return (Matt 24:42-51; 1 Ths 5:1-11; 2 Pet 3:10-13).

There will not be a “rapture” as depicted in Premillennial doctrine and speculation. When Jesus comes it will be to judge all humanity at the same time, “catching up” the saints to ever be with Him in glory (Jno 5:28-29; 1 Ths 4:13-18; 1 Cor 15:24; Col 3:4). These false prophets who deal on the fear of men hinder the truth. When their errors are shown by the passing of time, skeptics are emboldened in their rejection of God. The truth of Christ’s unexpected return urges people of faith to prepare, even as the faithless are driven by unfounded fear. Which will you be? (Rom 13:11-14)