Since the World Health Organisation declared Covid-19 a pandemic on March 11, many theorists have flooded social media with alarming posts that prove that when it comes to the apocalypse and the end times, most Christians are as clueless as non-believers.
American preacher Chuck Pierce, an evangelist from the Glory of Zion International Ministries, last month told Washington Post that he believed there were at least six more years before the world comes to an end.
“The Lord’s shown me through 2026, so I know this isn’t the end of time,” he said.
Meanwhile, local blogger Meshack Omondi in early April posted: “Do not take the coronavirus vaccine and do not take the mark of the beast (666). The radio-frequency identification (RFID) microchip is in the coronavirus vaccine.”
These are just two of the many posts doing the rounds and exposing just how naïve most people are when it comes to understanding eschatology.
Pierce’s claim that the world is six years away from ending is contrary to what Jesus said in Matthew 24:36: “No one knows the day nor the hour…” Omondi’s post, on the other hand, is disturbing because a vaccine has not even been found let alone released for worldwide use.
When it comes to predictions about the end of the world, most Christians have always got it wrong. Historians say many Christians in 17th century Europe predicted the end would happen in 1666 because the numbers “666” represented the mark of the Beast mentioned in the book of Revelation. When the Great London Fire, which lasted four days, erupted that year, many saw it as a fulfilment of the prophecy. Even Catholic Pope Innocent III (1161–1216) predicted that the world would end 666 years after the rise of Islam in 618.
Bible teacher Opayo Kutayi says most Christians prefer to give Revelation and any other end-time books a wide berth. However, when it comes to spreading conspiracy theories on end-times, for example, concerning the mark of the Beast and the Antichrist, the ‘share’ button is used with abandon.
“Currently, Covid-19 and 5G network are trending for being Antichrist,” says Mr Kutayi. “You forgot you told us that Barack Obama is the Antichrist, the Pope is the Antichrist, and now it is billionaire Bill Gates. Take time and study the end-times with the help of the Holy Ghost. It seems we are waiting to call out the Antichrist more than we are preparing for eternity.”