Modern American life has conflated the end of time with everyday time. We are living each day in a panic as though it is the last day. We experience each moment as though it is a deadline, an end, a final chance for productivity. We are not waiting for The End Of Time to live at the end of time.
Around 1830 John Nelson Darby, having selected scripture passages from Daniel, Revelation, 1 and 2 Thessalonians and elsewhere, pasted them together, called them a whole, and invented the Rapture, a word not found in the Bible.
Christians can bet on a supernatural rescue for themselves and their kind and wait for the cataclysm, or they can dedicate themselves to compassionate action to alleviate suffering and injustice, to creating a better world.
Predictions of the Apocalypse or its personal equivalent of a direct path to heaven have been a common theme throughout human history. We seem determined to keep ourselves in a constant state of preparation for the end of time.