Posts Tagged ‘Second Coming


Resisting The Devil

Peter said that our enemy, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion. He’s looking for someone to devour. Christ-followers of Peter’s day were undergoing persecution and tests of their faith. This suffering was seen as a result of the devil’s prowling. Peter said to stand firm in the faith instead of abandoning it. He wrote:

Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of sufferings. – 1 Peter 5:9 (NIV)

Knowing that we are all in this together helps us to resist the devil and stand firm together. We have brothers and sisters around the world who are undergoing persecution for our faith and they’re not giving up. If anything, their faith is stronger. They don’t have the option of complacency. The enemy is on the prowl and things will only get worse for Christians before Christ returns. What will you do when the enemy comes prowling around trying to devour you? Will you walk away to avoid persecution or will you stand firm in the faith knowing that Jesus is coming soon?

Patiently Waiting

No one enjoys suffering. The Christians of the first century suffered persecution at the hands of those who opposed the church. James told them:

Be patient, then, brothers and sisters, until the Lord’s coming. See how the farmer waits for the land to yield its valuable crop, patiently waiting for the autumn and spring rains. 8 You too, be patient and stand firm, because the Lord’s coming is near. – James 5:7-8 (NIV)

Just as a farmer must wait for the rain to water his crops, so too must Christians wait for Christ’s return. The farmer knows that the rains will come and we must know that Jesus will come back. It requires patient endurance. No matter what others may say about us or do to us, we have to remember that Christ will return and those who stand firm and remain faithful to the end will be rewarded. Jesus said that we should not be surprised if the world hates us. After all, they hated Him first. My encouragement to you today is to resolve yourself to remain faithful to Jesus no matter what. The world is getting scarier and scarier for followers of Jesus. Will you patiently stand firm until He returns?

Every Day That Passes

The book of Luke ends with Jesus blessing His disciples and ascending into Heaven.  Luke, also the author of Acts, picked up the story in Acts 1.

 After he said this, he was taken up before their very eyes, and a cloud hid him from their sight.
10 They were looking intently up into the sky as he was going, when suddenly two men dressed in white stood beside them. 11 “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 (NIV)

When Jesus returns, and He will return, He will come back in the same way in which He went – with power and glory.  We must be constantly aware of the fact of Jesus’ return.  When He comes back, will He find faithful followers on the earth?  Will we be faithful to Him in how we live and with how we share His love and grace with the world?  The world needs to hear of Jesus and His love.  They need to know that there is a God who sent His Son to die for their sins.  They need to know that He raised Jesus from the dead and that they can have spiritual blessings of love, joy, peace and hope.  They can have the promise of eternal life with God.  They need to hear the good news of Jesus Christ and we are the bearers of this good news.  Every day that passes is another chance for someone to see the Gospel lived out in our lives.  Every day that passes is another opportunity for someone to hear of Jesus’ love.  Every day that passes means that someone is one day closer to standing before the judgment seat of Christ.  Let us take advantage of every opportunity that each day affords to share the love of Jesus with the world.
PRAYER: Father in Heaven, I want an opportunity to share Your love and grace with someone today. Help me to see the opportunities to tell people about Jesus that You will put in my path today. Help me to seize those opportunities that I may be an effective ambassador for You. In Jesus’ name, amen.

The Great Reunion

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. — 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 (NIV)

I was thinking about relationships and friendships this morning and how hard it is to be separated by miles and miles.  I like e-mail and the telephone, but it is no substitute for a face-to-face reunion.  That is the promise of 1 Thessalonians 4.  There will be a great reunion of loved ones, both friends and family.  Those who have passed away and those who are still alive.  We who are one in Christ will see each other face to face again.  We may be separated by time and space at the present moment, but we will be reunited in the presence of the Lord on that great day.

Paul tells the Thessalonians to encourage each other with the words he had written about the return of Christ.  My encouragement to you today is to remain faithful until He returns.  Stay faithful, my friends.  The reward and the reunion is well worth it.  Though we may face trials, tribulations and temptations, stay faithful.

PRAYER: Help me, O God, to be faithful to Jesus no matter what. I long for His coming. I long to be with You forever. Help me to stay faithful as long as I live. In Jesus’ mighty name, amen.


The Day Of His Return

Micah 7:1-7 (NIV)

What misery is mine!
I am like one who gathers summer fruit
    at the gleaning of the vineyard;
there is no cluster of grapes to eat,
    none of the early figs that I crave.
The faithful have been swept from the land;
    not one upright person remains.
Everyone lies in wait to shed blood;
    they hunt each other with nets.
Both hands are skilled in doing evil;
    the ruler demands gifts,
the judge accepts bribes,
    the powerful dictate what they desire—
    they all conspire together.
The best of them is like a brier,
    the most upright worse than a thorn hedge.
The day God visits you has come,
    the day your watchmen sound the alarm.
    Now is the time of your confusion.
Do not trust a neighbor;
    put no confidence in a friend.
Even with the woman who lies in your embrace
    guard the words of your lips.
For a son dishonors his father,
    a daughter rises up against her mother,
a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law—
    a man’s enemies are the members of his own household.

But as for me, I watch in hope for the Lord,
    I wait for God my Savior;
    my God will hear me.

​Micah lived in troubling times.  Families dishonored one another.  Leaders were corrupt.  People were violent.  People were liars.  Everyone did what they wanted with no regard for God.  Sound familiar?
We live in troubling times, too.  Families don’t care about one another.  Corrupt leadership in our world and in our churches.  Violence and bloodshed in our streets.  Dishonesty is everywhere.  God and His Word are being outlawed from the public square.  
Micah looked forward to a day when God would hear him.  Micah looked forward to the day of God’s appearing.  He looked forward to the day of the Lord.  While he never saw its fulfillment in Jesus, he knew that the day was coming.
We also look forward to the Day of the Lord.  We look forward to God’s appearing.  We may not see it fulfilled, but that doesn’t mean that it will not happen.  Jesus Christ will return someday in order to take His followers home to their eternal reward.  God isn’t finished yet!  The wicked will be punished.  The corrupt will be exposed.  The violence will be replaced with peace.  Families will be united.  This is the day we look forward to and the day for which we long.  May it come soon.
PRAYER: Heavenly Father, I look forward to the day of Christ’s return.  Reassure my heart that He will return soon.  Help me to do Your will as I wait for Jesus to come back and take me home.  In His name I pray, amen.

Sound The Alarm!

Micah 1:8-16 (NIV)
Because of this I will weep and wail;
    I will go about barefoot and naked.
I will howl like a jackal
    and moan like an owl.
For Samaria’s plague is incurable;
    it has spread to Judah.
It has reached the very gate of my people,
    even to Jerusalem itself.
10 Tell it not in Gath;
    weep not at all.
In Beth Ophrah
    roll in the dust.
11 Pass by naked and in shame,
    you who live in Shaphir.
Those who live in Zaanan
    will not come out.
Beth Ezel is in mourning;
    it no longer protects you.
12 Those who live in Maroth writhe in pain,
    waiting for relief,
because disaster has come from the Lord,
    even to the gate of Jerusalem.
13 You who live in Lachish,
    harness fast horses to the chariot.
You are where the sin of Daughter Zion began,
    for the transgressions of Israel were found in you.
14 Therefore you will give parting gifts
    to Moresheth Gath.
The town of Akzib will prove deceptive
    to the kings of Israel.
15 I will bring a conqueror against you
    who live in Mareshah.
The nobles of Israel
    will flee to Adullam.
16 Shave your head in mourning
    for the children in whom you delight;
make yourself as bald as the vulture,
    for they will go from you into exile.


Imagine knowing that the destruction of your nation and the exile of your people was coming and there wasn’t anything you could do about it.  God was fed up with the idolatry and wickedness of His people and the time for punishment was at hand.  Micah was devastated and heartbroken.  His people would be attacked and carried off into exile.  Cities would be destroyed.  Micah was in mourning.
Someday God will unleash judgment on the wickedness and evil of our world.  What will His people do then?  We know from the New Testament that Jesus will return and that will be the end of time.  Are we ready for His return?  Are we warning people of the coming judgment?  Are we preparing people for Christ’s return?  We tend to think of it as a wonderful event when we will go to Heaven.  It is!  BUT it is also a terrible event in that many people will be judged and sentenced to an eternity separated from God in Hell.  How can we let that happen?  We must sound the alarm!  Jesus is coming!  Be ready!  Get right with God through faith in His Son, Jesus!  May we be ready for Christ’s triumphant return and may we prepare others for what is coming.
PRAYER: Father, we pray today for those who don’t know You.  They’re destined to be separated from You for all eternity.  The task seems great, but You are greater.  Give us courage and boldness to sound the alarm.  In the name of Your soon to be returning Son, amen.

Jesus Is Coming Soon

James 5:7-9 (NIV)
Be patient, then, brothers and sisters, until the Lord’s coming. See how the farmer waits for the land to yield its valuable crop, patiently waiting for the autumn and spring rains. 8 You too, be patient and stand firm, because the Lord’s coming is near. 9 Don’t grumble against one another, brothers and sisters, or you will be judged. The Judge is standing at the door!
We have waited for nearly 2,000 years for Jesus to return.  The Bible says that He will come back.  James says that His coming is near.  Rather than grumbling with one another, we should be telling the world about Jesus.
Consider what Peter said in His letter:

But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. 9 The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.

​ – 2 Peter 3:8-10 (NIV)​
​While we may feel as though Jesus’ return will never happen, we are assured that He is coming back.  The “slowness” of His return is because of God’s patience.  God desires that everyone should turn to Him in repentance.  Every day is one more opportunity for someone to believe, repent, confess and be baptized.  Every day is one more opportunity for someone to hear the Gospel and turn to Jesus for forgiveness.  Every day is one more opportunity for you and me to tell someone about God’s love and mercy.  Yes, we long for our Heavenly home!  Shouldn’t we long to take as many people with us as possible?  When Jesus returns, that’s it!  There will be no more opportunities to repent and turn to God for salvation.
So don’t waste today!  Think about that person you’ve been wanting to invite to worship with you.  Think about that person with whom you’ve had numerous conversations about many things, but not about Jesus.  Think about your family members who are wandering away from the Lord.  Think about ​your children or your parents.  Think about your siblings or your friends.  Who needs to hear about Jesus and His love today?  Who needs to experience God’s grace today?  Don’t put it off.  The Lord will not be patient forever.  Jesus is coming soon.
PRAYER: My Lord and my God, I long to see Jesus coming on the clouds in power and glory.  May He come soon.  Until He does, I pray that I may have an opportunity to share my faith with someone I love today.  Give me courage, strength, boldness and words to tell someone about Jesus today.  In His saving name I pray, amen.

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