By Clark Ballentine
He Promised to Return
Our Lord Jesus Christ spoke of himself as being a nobleman, a member of a royal family, but without a kingdom. He told of the necessity for going away to receive title to a kingdom, but gave assurance that he will return again.
"The foxes have holes, and the birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man bath not where to lay his head" (Matt. 8:20).
"A certain nobleman went into a far country to receive for himself a kingdom, and to return" (Luke 19:12).
"My kingdom is not of this world" (John 18:36).
"If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also" (John 14:3).
One can readily understand that Jesus had no possessions before he was crucified, but said:
"I go unto my Father" (John 14:12).
"In my Father's kingdom" (Matt. 26:29).
"Thy kingdom come" (Luke 11 :2).
It seems self-evident that it was necessary for him to go to his Father to receive his possession, since he promised that he will come again. It is equally evident that he will bring title to his kingship with him.
"I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband" (Rev. 21:2).
There are more prophecies of his second coming, even in the Old Testament, than of his first coming.
" I saw in the night visions, and, behold, one like the Son of man came with the clouds of heaven" (Dan. 7:13).
"In the days of\rquote these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom" (Dan. 2:44).
"He shall have dominion also from sea to sea, and from the river unto the ends of the earth" (Psa. 72:8).
"Yet have I set my king upon my holy hill of Zion. I will declare the decree: the LORD hath said unto me, Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee" (Psa. 2:6, 7).
"Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever" (Isa. 9:7).
"I will stablish the throne of his kingdom for ever. I will be his father, and he shall be my son" (2 Sam. 7:13, 14).
"The LORD shall be king over all the earth" (Zech. 14:9).
"It shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of the LORD'S house shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow unto it" (Isa. 2:2).
See also: Psa. 145:13; Zech. 9:10; 6:12, 13; Amos 9:11; Micah 1:1-3; Zech. 14:16; Isa. 60:12; and many, many others.
The New Testament contains more references to Jesus' Second Coming than to any other subject.
"Waiting for the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ" (1 Cor. 1:7).
"At the appearing of Jesus Christ" (1 Pet. 1:7).
"We know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him" (1 John 3:2).
"Be patient therefore, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord" (Jas. 5:7).
"Unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time" (Heb. 9:28).
"When Christ, who is our life, shall appear" (Col. 3:4).
"From whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ" (Phil. 3:20).
"Surely I come quickly" (Rev. 22:20).
Each of the disciples of our Lord Jesus Christ believed that he would come again, taught that lie would come again, and recorded this belief in almost every book of the New Testament.
"Until he comes" has been a watchword for every generation of believers for almost two thousand years.
"Occupy till I come" (Luke 19:13).
The Second Coming of Jesus will be the greatest event in the history of the world. As such, it is a matter of first importance in the gospel message. Gospel means good news, and certainly the return of our Lord will be good news for mankind.
Although there are many conflicting doctrines taught regarding the return of our Lord, there is no reason for anyone to be in doubt about it. Neither is there reason for lack of knowledge. Our Bible is very clear and very emphatic on this point.
"I would not have you to be ignorant. Brethren for the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the arch-angel, and with the trump of God" (1 Thes. 4:13-16).
One can and should understand this important event, which so vitally concerns the salvation of each one.
"Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved" (Acts 4:12).
Time of His Return
Jesus will come when the world is least expecting him.
"As the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, and knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be" (Matt. 24:37-39).
"Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh" (Matt. 24:44).
He said that lie will come when a part of the people of the world will not be prepared.
"While they went to buy, the bridegroom came; and they that were ready went in with him to the marriage" (Matt. 25:10).
"Then shall two be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left" (Matt. 24: 40).
"Two women shall be grinding at the mill; the one shall be taken, and the other left" (Matt. 24:41).
"Cast ye the unprofitable servant into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth" (Matt. 25:30).
"Then shall he say unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed" (Matt. 25:11).
The Apostle Paul said it shall be in a time when men tall? Of peace and safety.
"Yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night. For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them" (1 Thes. 5:2, 3).
The Apostle Peter also said that Jesus will come like a thief.
"The day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night" (2 Pet. 3:10).
Jesus himself put it this way:
" Blessed are those servants, whom the lord when he cometh shall find watching" (Luke 12:37).
Place of His Return
According to prophecy, he will return to the Mount of Olives, just east of Jerusalem.
"His feet shall stand in that day upon the Mount of Olives" (Zech. 14:4).
He will return to the place of his departure.
"While they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight. And while they looked steadfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel; which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go int o heaven. Then returned they unto Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet" (Acts 1:9-12).
Manner of His Return
He will come literally and personally.
"The Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the arch-angel, and with the trump of God" (1 Thes. 4:16).
"The Son of man shall come in the glory of his Father with his angels; and then he shall reward every man according to his works" (Matt. 16:27).
"I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be" (Rev. 22:12).
"Jesus himself stood in the midst of them ... and did eat before them" (Luke 24:36-43).
"They came and held him by the feet" (Matt. 28:9).
He will come visibly.
"Hereafter ye shall see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven" (Matt. 26:64).
"Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him" (Rev. 1:7).
"If they shall say unto you, Behold, h e is in the desert; go not forth: behold, he is in the secret chambers; believe it not. For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be" (Matt. 24:26, 27).
He will come with power and great glory.
"Then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory" (Matt. 24:30).
"He hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS" (Rev. 19:16).
"Thou sayest that I am a king. To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world" (John 18:37).
Purpose of His Return
He will come to occupy the throne given to him before his birth.
"He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David" (Luke 1:32).
He will come to reestablish the kingdom which was overturned.
"Thus saith the Lord GOD; Remove the diadem, and take off the crown: this shall not be the same: exalt him that is low, and abase him that is high. I will overturn, overturn, over-turn, it: and it shall be no more, until he come whose right it is; and I will give it him " (Ezek. 21:26, 27).
He will come to rule the world.
"When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory: and before him shall be gathered all nations" (Matt. 25:31, 32).
He will come to raise the dead and change the living.
"As in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive. But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ's at his coming" (1 Cor. 15:22, 23).
"Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed " (1 Cor. 15 :51, 52).
"The dead in Christ shall rise first: then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord" (1 Thes. 4:16, 17).
He will come to judge both the living and the dead.
"I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom" (2 Tim. 4:1).
"We shall all stand before the judgment seat of Christ. For it is written, As I live, saith the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God" (Rom. 14:10, 11).
He will come to restore the earth to a perfect condition, as it was before man sinned in Eden.
"He shall send Jesus Christ, which before was preached unto you: whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began" (Acts 3:20, 21).
John the Revelator informs us that his book is.
"THE REVELATION OF JESUS CHRIST"
and then ends his writings with:
"EVEN SO, COME, LORD JESUS."