the worst surprise
"It was much the same in the days of Lot; they ate and drank, they bought and sold, they built and planted. But on the day Lot left Sodom, fire and brimstone rained down from heaven and destroyed them all. It will be like that on the day the Son of Man is revealed." —Luke 17:28-30
Jesus' second coming and the end of the world through fire is certain. However, the exact time of these events is uncertain. Jesus said that no one knows the day or the hour (Mk 13:32; Mt 25:13).
Nonetheless, Jesus has revealed to us in the Scriptures many of the happenings which will precede the day of the Lord. He has done this so that we can approximate His final coming and the end of the world. This helps us be better prepared and to help others be prepared.
However, Jesus has revealed in the Scriptures that many people will disregard or be ignorant of the Scriptural revelation about the end of the world. Thus, they will be clueless on the final day even though the magnitude and speed of the world's destruction makes foreknowledge of the event even more critical. It will be "business as usual" up to the very end, as was the case before Noah's flood and the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah (Lk 17:26ff). Those surprised at the world's end will be well on their way to hell. That's why Jesus revealed so much about the end — to keep us from being surprised by the greatest catastrophe in history.
Don't repeat the mistakes of the past. "Search the Scriptures" (Jn 5:39). Get ready for the great and terrible day. Come, Lord Jesus!
Prayer: Father, I want to be ready and help as many as possible also be ready.
Promise: "Whoever tries to preserve his life will lose it; whoever loses it will keep it." —Lk 17:33
Praise: Frequent confession gives Peter peace that he is always prepared to meet his Lord.
Nihil Obstat: Reverend Giles H. Pater, April 24, 2003
Imprimatur: †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, April 28, 2003