Archive for the ‘Second Coming’ Category

The Last Week, Pt. IV (Genesis 25; Matthew 24)

January 24, 2013

“Two nations are in your womb, and two people’s from within you shall be divided; the one shall be stronger than the other, the older shall serve the younger.”  Genesis 25

“And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold.”  Matthew 24:12

“It seems they were always arguing and they were always at each other.”  This was the mothers commentary about her two sons during their developmental years.  This could have also been the commentary of Rebecca about the two children in her womb in Genesis 25.

When you look at Matthew 25 you realize this is the commentary of all of humanity as the time of the Lord’s return get nearer.  I pray you take time to read through this chapter with an eye to the great weight of the chapter.

Jesus is giving a straightforward answer to the question asked by the disciples, “tell us what will be the sign of your coming and the end of the age.”  Here is Jesus response:

1.  First a general prophecy

Before Christ returns there will be false Christs, futile wars, and famines, Vs: 4-8.  Before Christ returns there will be persecution, falling away of the church, and increased lawlessness, Vs: 9-13.  Before Christ comes the gospel will be proclaimed throughout the whole world, Vs: 14

2.  Second, a specific prophecy

The Antichrist comes on the scene and proclaims his deity.  The Antichrist sets up a one world government.  When these things happen we will be able to know that his coming is soon.

3.  Third, a straightforward warning

The exact moment of his coming is information only the father possesses.  The world will be preoccupied when he comes.  When he comes, he will judge the world.  We as followers of Christ must be alert and we must be about the business of reaching people because our world is showing all the signs of the Lord’s coming.

Father, help me to see the signs and help me to sow the seed of the gospel.  Father, help all who read this to see and to share the glorious news, “The King is coming!”

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“Get Set” (Revelation 8)

August 15, 2012

When the Lamb opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven for about half an hour.” Rev. 8:1

For the last couple of weeks, the Olympics have dominated the scene in many people’s homes.  Our family has spent many anxious moments watching as the USA team have competed in every sport.  This past week I watched some of the track and field competitions. As I did I found myself glued to the TV at the moment the starter would cry out, “Get set.”  As I watched it was easy to see that the runners became intense when they heard those words, “Get set.”  The race that was to come dominated there thoughts.

In a great way, the words recorded by John in Revelation eight remind me of the race of life.  When the last seal was opened, there was silence in heaven for 30 minutes.  Many have asked, “Why such silence?” Here are two suggested answers:

1.  The awe of God’s presence causes all of heaven to stand in silence.

2. The Awfulness of God’s judgment to come causes silence.

For me, I believe both these answers are happening at the same time.  In heaven and someday on the earth everyone will stand in awe of our Great God and Savior Jesus Christ.   Someday everyone will bow in fear, fatigue, and fright to the judgments that are coming.

I can honestly say, “I struggled to even write down the judgments that are ahead.”  I challenge you to read Revelation 8.  As you read, write down what is ahead.  This exercise drove me to deep prayer.  Here was my prayer:

Lord, I thank you for your salvation.  I have been delivered from the wrath to come.  This day I know what awaits all who have rejected you.  This day I am driven to share the gospel with the world around me.  Lord help all who read this bog, to shine as lights in this dark world.  Please delay your coming so that more and more people will have another day to come to your Son Jesus Christ.”

Brothers and sisters, “Get set, Jesus is coming again.”  Train yourself in Godliness and train yourself in the gospel.  As you do these things give testimony to the gospel before a world that is not set for his return.”

The Waiting Is Over

May 16, 2012

“Lord, now you are letting your servant depart in peace, according to your word; for my eyes have seen your salvation,” Luke 2:29-30.

I can still remember those childhood days when I would often become so excited about an upcoming event or an upcoming day trip. I would not be able to sleep the night before as I laid awake at night watching the clock as I wanted to get going to do whatever it was that I was getting to do on that day.

I see this same anticipated excitement in our youngest son, who will become consumed about those things he looks forward to.  Sometimes we even have to not tell him ahead of time so that we can have some sanity until it is time to go.  I remember, several years ago, telling John about a trip we were going to take in about a week.  That very night he packed his bag and that was all he talked about for the next week.

Question, “I wonder if we should have such anticipation about our Lord’s coming?”  This morning I was captured by the excitement of Simeon in Luke 2:22-33 as he was able to see the Son of God.  The Bible records that he had been waiting for many years to see the Messiah.  The Bible records that the Holy Spirit had told him he would not die until he had seen Jesus.

On this day recorded in Luke 2, this man’s wait is over.  Brothers and sisters there is coming a day when the wait will be over for us.  The writer of the Book of Revelation confirms this fact: “Behold, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him, even those who pierced him, and all the tribes of the earth will wail on account of him,” 1:7.

This elderly man rejoiced to see His day.  But not everyone will rejoice to see the Lord.  This man said of Jesus, “Behold this child is destined for the rise and fall of many Israel.”  Every day this truth is lived out as there are those who awaken to the gospel and are granted eternal life.  Every day there are those who reject the gospel and they will be rewarded with eternal death in hell.

Both groups will some day see Him.  This day I ask that our Lord would help each of us to speak to those who have never heard the gospel.  This day, I want to have the proper anticipative heart for the coming of the Lord.

Lord, we love you and we look forward to the day when we can cry out, before you, ‘Holy, holy, is the Lord God almighty.”  

What John Saw

February 4, 2011

This morning I am writing this blog rather late.  I have found myself consumed with reading about what people are seeing in our world.  For instance, I read about an Egyptian who set himself on fire to protest the increasing outrageous cost of food.  I read about how his protest spread rapidly in the village where he lived and suddenly the entire nation is protesting.  I read about 4000 people who are dying each and every day in Africa from AIDS.

However I also read Revelation 4-8.  Revelation 5 begins with, “Then I saw…” The things John saw were totally devastating.  I found myself weeping as I contemplated what is to come and at the same time I found myself asking God, “When will this time be?  Are we in the beginning point now?”

These questions come as I seek to know what John saw.  Biblically speaking, John is seeing events in the tribulation period (7 years that precede Christ’s Second-coming). Now there is much debate about the believers location in this period.  There are those who believe in the rapture of the church (I am in this group) and there are others who believe we will go through the tribulation period.

Here is what is amazing about this.  Both groups hold the same view that Christ will return and rule and reign forever.  So here is the encouragement I found this morning.  As a Child Of God I am going to be either Kept from the hour of trial or I am going to be kept during the hour of trial.  Either way I am a winner because of Jesus.

Here is what John wrote, “He who sits on the throne will shelter them with his presence.  They shall hunger no more, neither thirst anymore; the sun shall not strike them, nor the scorching heat. For the Lamb in the midst of the throne will be their shepherd, and he will guide them to springs of living water, and God will wipe away every tear from their eyes,” 7:15-17.

Praise God for our Savior who keep’s us from trials and He keeps us in the midst of trials.  However, consider those who know not Christ.  They are seeing things that frighten them and they only know how to lash out in fear trying to enforce their will to survive and thrive in what they think will bring peace and happiness.

I honest sit and watch the scenes in Egypt, Africa, Pakistan, and around the world with a broken heart.  My prayer is simple, “May they see what I have seen by grace.  I have seen my need for Jesus.”  May you be a light today that God can use us to shine His glory through.

How Will We Know?

February 3, 2011

The violence in Egypt and the unrest in so many places around the world has sparked fear and worries for many in the world.  Even the non-religious community has great concern because of the economic implications of the events unfolding in our world today.

As I approached the first 4 chapters of Revelation I found myself seeking to understand future events with an elevated urgency.  I pictured those first readers of this prophetic letter and I asked myself, “Did they feel an urgency in their day?”  How did they feel when they read, “The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God have him to show to his servants, the things that must soon take place,” 1:1.

The unrest of our day has some people wondering, “Is the end at hand?”  Is this really the question we as followers of Christ should be asking?  I am reminded of the words of the late Adrian Rogers, “We are not looking for an event to happen.  We are looking for a person to come, Jesus Christ.”

This very theme permeates the entire book of Revelation. “Grace and peace from Him who is and who was and who is to come,” 1:4. This theme surrounds the throne of God every moment of every day, “Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord God Almighty, who was and is and is to come,” 4:8. Brothers and sisters we will know the end has come when we see Him.

Because of this, we as followers of Christ must live our lives with an urgency to model Christ and to spread the gospel every day. I want to live my life for His glory, because every eye will see Him.  Oh how I want my neighbors to see Him as Lord and Savior.  I do not desire to see anyone to know His wrath.

The people of Egypt need Christ.  Every Muslim needs Christ, even those who are militant. Maybe you would respond, “They do not deserve Christ.”  Neither do you and I, but for His name sake, He has extended grace to us.

May we live this day with the full assurance that He is coming again and may we live this day with faithful abandonment to radically share His gospel with the world.  “Worthy are you, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things, and by your will they existed and were created,” 4:11

Have You Read The News Yet?

January 17, 2011

Each morning, after I have finished my persona time in the word, I scan the headlines on FoxNews.com.  This morning was no exception.  I am often amazed how God’s Word predicts what I am about to read each morning.

For example, “This morning I read Ezekiel 40-47, II Thessalonians 1-3.”  Ezekiel is writing about the vision he sees of the new temple.  As I read through the detailed description I asked myself two questions: “When will this take place, and why did God give such a lengthy description?” Very quickly I found the answer in Ezekiel 44:1-3A, “Then he brought me back to the outer gate of the sanctuary, which faces east. And it was shut.  And the Lord said to me, ‘This gate shall remain shut; it shall not be opened, and no one shall enter by it, for the Lord, the God of Israel, has entered by it.  Therefore it shall remain shut.  Only the prince may sit in it,to eat bread before the Lord.'”

The fact is, the Eastern Gate will stay closed until Jesus comes. I have stood in front of this gate and wept knowing that when Jesus comes, He will enter the city, not as a prisoner but as the Prince of Peace.  He will right all wrongs and He will usher in the Kingdom of God.

As I rejoiced about His coming, I turned to II Thessalonians and read, “When the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with his mighty angels in flaming fire, inflicting vengeance on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus.” 1:8. Suddenly my joy was mixed with sadness for those who are rejecting our Messiah.

I was filled with zeal to share my faith with everyone around me, because I believe His coming is closer now than it has ever been.  Question, “Have you read the news yet?”  This morning headlines read, “President of China says, ‘American currency is a thing of the past.'” The article went on to quote the President of China, “The Yuan needs to become the universal currency.”

Brothers and sisters, don’t be lulled into thinking only about the economy.  Be assured Satan knows what He is doing and we must be aware of his tactics.  Consider All who will be left behind if Jesus were to return today.  Consider all those who will experience the wrath of God unless they come to Jesus.

My prayer for each of us today is the prayer of Paul in II Thessalonians 3, “May the word of the Lord run with speed ahead and be honored.”