That night John stayed at Michael’s house. His sleep was very troubled on account of all the talk about the end of the world. But when the morning came he was just pleased to be alive.
When he had woken up, John got himself dressed, and then went downstairs for breakfast. The date was the 9th September 2050, and it was a Sunday.
Breakfast was nice; there were a few items of food which he had never tasted before, which are obviously to be created some time in the future. There was only John, Michael and Ofelia at the table, and over the course of the meal he discovered that Michael’s wife had passed away a couple years ago after a long term illness.
“But she’s in a better place now” Said Michael.
John nodded understandingly.
“Well” said Michael, “I presume that you will be coming to church with us?”
“Definitely!” Answered John.
“Then we had better get into the car” said Michael.
So they made their way out the back door where John saw that Michael had one of those strange looking cars which he had seen the previous day when he arrived, which hovers over the ground rather than being driven along by wheels.
They made their way to the church. And to John’s surprise, the church looked nothing different to what they look like now, for all he knew he could well have been back in 2011, except that he was driven there in a strange pod car.
Inside the church they had segregated seating, and so the men sat on one side of the church while the woman sat on the other side.
There was a very large congregation there, probably about one thousand people.
They sang a few hymns, a lot of them John already knew, and some he presumed were futuristic.
And after a few men prayed a short prayer each, Michael stood up to preach. He preached about the end of the world, and that it is not going to end this coming Saturday, for it is impossible that anyone can know the time of the end of the world. He also talked about someone called Peter, who John later discovered was Michael’s eldest son, who had apparently decided to leave Michael’s church and form his own congregation, but he was preaching that the world WAS going to end on Saturday, and he himself had bought tickets for himself and his family that they might go to New Earth.
And then after they had sung another hymn, the service was over, and everyone chatted at the end of the service. Ofelia introduced John to a few of her friends. And then they went back to Michael’s house.
That afternoon, they just relaxed, Michael and Ofelia when to their respective rooms for a nap, and John just spent some time reading books. He learned that over the years from 2012 to 2050 all church denominations died out except for the Baptists, and so “Baptist” and “Christian” became synonymous. He read a number of other books mostly ones by Michael Buckingham.
And then in the evening they again went to Church, and Michael again preached. This time he preached about the Prophet Enoch, and he had no idea that John had actually met him in person.
While he was preaching there was a violent earthquake, and the foundations of the church shook so much that the glass of all the windows cracked and shattered into a billion pieces. The congregation were shocked and they all said to one another that maybe Peter Buckingham was right; maybe the world really was ending.
I’m sure Michael too was quite shocked, but yet he kept his composure and shouted out with a load voice and said, “This is the work of the Devil, let him not deceive you with his earthquakes to believe that the end of the world is coming! The Devil may be able to work small wonders, but my God is able to work GREAT wonders!”
After a hymn, the congregation left, and no-one seemed to so much as say “hello” to each other, but everyone went home in silence evidently fearing that their faith in Michael was not right.
And so John and Michael and Ofelia were left at the church to clear up the damage that was created by the earthquake.
John then asked Michael, “Do you really believe that that was just the Devil trying to make us afraid?”
Michael answered “I trust in God!”
Then the ground began to shake again, this time much more violently than before. Ofelia let out a shrill scream and grabbed hold of John’s hand.
And the building collapsed upon them.
They were buried.
Well that’s as far as we are getting today; we shall continue the narrative in the next chapter.
May The Lord add His blessing!