Love Jesus - the Key to Heaven!
Are You Prepared for the Return
Are You Prepared for the Return
A major emphasis in the teachings of the apostles was to prepare believers for the Second Coming of Jesus Christ. It is as if they constantly had their eyes on this glorious day and magnificent event.
THE DAY OF THE LORD
The Bible repeatedly refers to the Day of the Lord – referring to the day when Jesus Christ returns. It is good to know these Scriptures so that we are focused on the magnitude of Christ’s return and what it will be like to stand before Him.
‘The sun will be turned to darkness and the moon to blood before the coming of the great and glorious day of the Lord’ (Acts 2:20).
‘Therefore you do not lack any spiritual gift as you eagerly wait for our Lord Jesus Christ to be revealed. He will keep you strong to the end, so that you will be blameless on the day of our Lord Jesus Christ’ (1 Corinthians 1:7-8).
‘When you are assembled in the name of our Lord Jesus and I am with you in spirit, and the power of our Lord Jesus is present, hand this man over to Satan, so that the sinful nature may be destroyed and his spirit saved on the day of the Lord’ (1 Corinthians 5:4-5).
‘For we do not write you anything you cannot read or understand. And I hope that, as you have understood us in part, you will come to understand fully that you can boast of us just as we will boast of you in the day of the Lord Jesus’ (2 Corinthians 1:13-14).
‘In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now, being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus…
And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless until the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ – to the glory and praise of God’ (Philippians 1:4-6,9-11).
‘Now, brothers, about times and dates we do not need to write to you, for you know very well that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night. While people are saying, “Peace and safety,” destruction will come on them suddenly, as labour pains on a pregnant woman, and they will not escape.
But you, brothers, are not in darkness so that this day should surprise you like a thief. You are all sons of the light and sons of the day. We do not belong to the night or to the darkness’ (1 Thessalonians 5:1-5).
‘Concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered to him, we ask you, brothers, not to become easily unsettled or alarmed by some prophecy, report or letter supposed to have come from us, saying that the day of the Lord has already come’ (2 Thessalonians 2:1-2).
‘Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another – and all the more as you see the Day approaching’ (Hebrews 10:25).
‘The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.
But the day of the Lord will come like a thief. The heavens will disappear with a roar; the elements will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and everything in it will be laid bare’ (2 Peter 3:9-10).
STANDING BLAMELESS BEFORE JESUS
As we look ahead to the return of Jesus Christ we have to think about how we will stand before Him. Will we be blameless or will we be ashamed? No matter how you may have failed God in the past, make sure you are living for Jesus today and press ahead to be all that Christ has called you to be.
‘I tell you, he will see that they get justice, and quickly. However, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?’ (Luke 18:8)
‘Be always on the watch, and pray that you may be able to escape all that is about to happen, and that you may be able to stand before the Son of Man’ (Luke 21:36).
‘Therefore judge nothing before the appointed time; wait till the Lord comes. He will bring to light what is hidden in darkness and will expose the motives of men’s hearts. At that time each will receive his praise from God’ (1 Corinthians 4:5).
‘When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory’ (Colossians 3:4).
‘…They tell how you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God, and to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead – Jesus, who rescues us from the coming wrath’ (1 Thessalonians 1:9-10).
‘For what is our hope, our joy, or the crown in which we will glory in the presence of our Lord Jesus when he comes? Is it not you? Indeed, you are our glory and joy’ (1 Thessalonians 2:19-20).
‘May he strengthen your hearts so that you will be blameless and holy in the presence of our God and Father when our Lord Jesus comes with all his holy ones’ (1 Thessalonians 3:13).
‘May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ’ (1 Thessalonians 5:23).
‘In the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who will judge the living and the dead, and in view of his appearing and his kingdom, I give you this charge: Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage – with great patience and careful instruction’ (2 Timothy 4:1-2).
‘Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day – and not only to me, but also to all who have longed for his appearing’ (2 Timothy 4:8).
‘It teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age, while we wait for the blessed hope – the glorious appearing of our great God and Saviour, Jesus Christ’ (Titus 2:12-13).
‘You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised. For in just a very little while, “He who is coming will come and will not delay” (Hebrews 10:36-37).
‘Be patient, then, brothers, until the Lord’s coming. See how the farmer waits for the land to yield its valuable crop and how patient he is for the autumn and spring rains. You too, be patient and stand firm, because the Lord’s coming is near’ (James 5:7-8).
‘These have come so that your faith – of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire – may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honour when Jesus Christ is revealed’ (1 Peter 1:7).
‘And when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that will never fade away’ (1 Peter 5:4).
‘Since everything will be destroyed in this way, what kind of people ought you to be? You ought to live holy and godly lives as you look forward to the day of God and speed its coming. That day will bring about the destruction of the heavens by fire, and the elements will melt in the heat. But in keeping with his promise we are looking forward to a new heaven and a new earth, the home of righteousness.
So then, dear friends, since you are looking forward to this, make every effort to be found spotless, blameless and at peace with him’ (2 Peter 3:11-14).
‘And now, dear children, continue in him, so that when he appears we may be confident and unashamed before him at his coming’ (1 John 2:28).
‘Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when he appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. Everyone who has this hope in him purifies himself, just as he is pure’ (1 John 3:2-3).
‘Enoch, the seventh from Adam, prophesied about these men: “See, the Lord is coming with thousands upon thousands of his holy ones to judge everyone, and to convict all the ungodly of all the ungodly acts they have done in the ungodly way, and of all the harsh words ungodly sinners have spoken against him” (Jude 14-15).
“I am coming soon. Hold on to what you have, so that no one will take your crown” (Revelation 3:11).
‘Behold, I come like a thief! Blessed is he who stays awake and keeps his clothes with him, so that he may not go naked and be shamefully exposed’ (Revelation 16:15).
COMING IN HIS MAGNIFICENT GLORY
One of the amazing aspects of Christ’s return will be to behold His glory. This will be so great and beyond anything we could possibly imagine.
‘In my vision at night I looked, and there before me was one like a son of man, coming with the clouds of heaven. He approached the Ancient of Days and was led into his presence. He was given authority, glory and sovereign power; all peoples, nations and men of every language worshipped him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion that will not pass away, and his kingdom is one that will never be destroyed’ (Daniel 7:13-14).
‘For the Son of Man is going to come in his Father’s glory with his angels, and then he will reward each person according to what he has done’ (Matthew 16:27).
‘For as lightning that comes from the east is visible even in the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man…
At that time the sign of the Son of Man will appear in the sky, and all the nations of the earth will mourn. They will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of the sky, with power and great glory’ (Matthew 24:27,30).
‘When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his throne in heavenly glory. All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats’ (Matthew 25:31-32).
“Yes, it is as you say,” Jesus replied. “But I say to all of you: In the future you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Mighty One and coming on the clouds of heaven” (Matthew 26:64).
‘If anyone is ashamed of me and my words, the Son of Man will be ashamed of him when he comes in his glory and in the glory of the Father and of the holy angels’ (Luke 9:26).
‘Just as it was in the days of Noah, so also will it be in the days of the Son of Man. People were eating, drinking, marrying and being given in marriage up to the day Noah entered the ark. Then the flood came and destroyed them all.
It was the same in the days of Lot. People were eating and drinking, buying and selling, planting and building. But the day Lot left Sodom, fire and sulphur rained down from heaven and destroyed them all.
It will be just like this on the day the Son of Man is revealed’ (Luke 17:26-30).
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‘At that time they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory’ (Luke 21:27).
‘But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Saviour from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, who, by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body’ (Philippians 3:20-21).
‘God is just: He will pay back trouble to those who trouble you and give relief to you who are troubled, and to us as well. This will happen when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven in blazing fire with his powerful angels. He will punish those who do not know God and do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. They will be punished with everlasting destruction and shut out from the presence of the Lord and from the majesty of his power on the day he comes to be glorified in his holy people and to be marvelled at among all those who have believed. This includes you, because you believed our testimony to you’ (2 Thessalonians 1:6-10).
‘But rejoice that you participate in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when his glory is revealed’ (1 Peter 4:13).
‘I saw heaven standing open and there before me was a white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True. With justice he judges and makes war. His eyes are like blazing fire, and on his head are many crowns. He has a name written on him that no one knows but he himself. He is dressed in a robe dipped in blood, and his name is the Word of God. The armies of heaven were following him, riding on white horses and dressed in fine linen, white and clean. Out of his mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations. “He will rule them with an iron sceptre.” He treads the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God Almighty. On his robe and on his thigh he has this name written: KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS’ (Revelation 19:11-16).
THE CERTAINTY OF CHRIST’S RETURN
The world will not be ready for the return of Christ. As Jesus delays His coming unbelievers will mock the reality of His Second Coming. No matter what troubles and difficulties come upon this world, we must know the certainty of Christ’s return and the establishment of His kingdom.
‘In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am’ (John 14:2-3).
‘After he said this, he was taken up before their very eyes, and a cloud hid him from their sight.
They were looking intently up into the sky as he was going, when suddenly two men dressed in white stood beside them. “Men of Galilee,” they said, “why do you stand here looking into the sky? This same Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen him go into heaven” (Acts 1:9-11).
‘Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord, and that he may send the Christ, who has been appointed for you – even Jesus. He must remain in heaven until the time comes for God to restore everything, as he promised long ago through his holy prophets’ (Acts 3:19-21).
‘For whenever you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes’ (1 Corinthians 11:26).
‘According to the Lord’s own word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left till the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep. For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. Therefore encourage each other with these words’ (1 Thessalonians 4:15-18).
‘In the sight of God, who gives life to everything, and of Christ Jesus, who while testifying before Pontius Pilate made the good confession, I charge you to keep this command without spot or blame until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ, which God will bring about in his own time – God, the blessed and only Ruler, the King of kings and Lord of lords, who alone is immortal and who lives in unapproachable light, whom no one has seen or can see. To him be honour and might forever. Amen’ (1 Timothy 6:13-16).
‘Just as man is destined to die once, and after that to face judgment, so Christ was sacrificed once to take away the sins of many people; and he will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for him’ (Hebrews 9:27-28).
‘First of all, you must understand that in the last days scoffers will come, scoffing and following their own evil desires. They will say, “Where is this ‘coming’ he promised? Ever since our fathers died, everything goes on as it has since the beginning of creation” (2 Peter 3:3-4).
‘Look, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him, even those who pierced him; and all the peoples of the earth will mourn because of him. So shall it be! Amen’ (Revelation 1:7).
“Behold, I am coming soon! Blessed is he who keeps the words of the prophecy in this book” (Revelation 22:7).
“Behold, I am coming soon! My reward is with me, and I will give to everyone according to what he has done” (Revelation 22:12).
‘He who testifies to these things says, “Yes, I am coming soon.” Amen. Come, Lord Jesus’ (Revelation 22:20).
JESUS IS COMING SOON!
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