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What Do We Know About The Lord's Second Coming?

Life after Death  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  49:36
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A purpose for Jesus second coming is to usher in a new heaven and a new earth.

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INTRODUCTION

1. Everything we have examined up to this point in this series on "Life After Death" has pertained to the "intermediate state"
2. Though Christians can look forward to experiencing bliss during the "intermediate state", there are even greater blessings for us to look forward to...
a. The resurrection of the dead, in which our spirits will obtain glorified and immortal bodies
b. The Day of Judgment, which for the Christian will be a day of glory and vindication
c. The new heavens and new earth, in which God and Christ will dwell with us for eternity
-- All of these blessings will be ushered in with the Lord's Second Coming
3. While most professing Christians look for the Lord to return, they often differ greatly over the details surrounding His "second coming"
a. The premillenial view looks for Christ to come in order to establish a literal kingdom on the earth, over which He will reign for a 1000 years
b. The postmillenial view understands that Christ will at some point begin a thousand year reign from heaven, at the end of which He will come to judge the world
c. The amillenial view believes that Christ has been reigning as "King of kings, and Lord of lords" ever since His ascension to heaven, and that His coming will be to raise the dead, judge the world, and usher in the "new heavens and new earth"
4. In this lesson, the amillenial view will be presented, which I believe most accurately teaches what the Bible reveals about the Second Coming of our Lord
[We begin, therefore, with...]

I. THE "CERTAINTY" OF HIS COMING

A. PROCLAIMED BY ANGELS AT HIS ASCENSION...

1. Cf. Ac 1:9-11, the "two men...in white apparel"
Acts 1:9–11 ESV
9 And when he had said these things, as they were looking on, he was lifted up, and a cloud took him out of their sight. 10 And while they were gazing into heaven as he went, behold, two men stood by them in white robes, 11 and said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into heaven? This Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven.”
2. Who said that "This same Jesus, who was taken up from into heaven, will so come in like manner as you saw Him go into heaven."

B. PROCLAIMED BY THE APOSTLES...

1. Peter, in his second recorded sermon - Ac 3:19-21
Acts 3:19–21 ESV
19 Repent therefore, and turn back, that your sins may be blotted out, 20 that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord, and that he may send the Christ appointed for you, Jesus, 21 whom heaven must receive until the time for restoring all the things about which God spoke by the mouth of his holy prophets long ago.
2. Paul, in writing to...
a. The Corinthians - 1 Co 11:26; 15:22-23
1 Corinthians 11:26 ESV
26 For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.
1 Corinthians 15:22–23 ESV
22 For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive. 23 But each in his own order: Christ the firstfruits, then at his coming those who belong to Christ.
b. The Thessalonians - 1 Th 1:9-10; 2:19; 3:13
1 Thessalonians 1:9–10 ESV
9 For they themselves report concerning us the kind of reception we had among you, and how you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God, 10 and to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, Jesus who delivers us from the wrath to come.
1 Thessalonians 2:19 ESV
19 For what is our hope or joy or crown of boasting before our Lord Jesus at his coming? Is it not you?
1 Thessalonians 3:13 ESV
13 so that he may establish your hearts blameless in holiness before our God and Father, at the coming of our Lord Jesus with all his saints.
c. The young evangelist, Timothy - 2 Ti 4:1 3. The writer to the Hebrews - He 9:27-28
1 Thessalonians 3:13c ESV
13 so that he may establish your hearts blameless in holiness before our God and Father, at the coming of our Lord Jesus with all his saints.
2 Timothy 4:1 ESV
1 I charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by his appearing and his kingdom:
Hebrews 9:27–28 ESV
27 And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment, 28 so Christ, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to deal with sin but to save those who are eagerly waiting for him.
[Just as throughout the Old Testament one finds the recurring theme "The Messiah is coming!", so in the New Testament we find not only "He has come!" but also "He is coming again!"
To the certainty of His coming, we can add...]

II. THE "MANNER" OF HIS COMING

A. HE WILL COME IN PERSON...

1. "This same Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will so come..." - Ac 1:11
Acts 1:11 ESV
11 and said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into heaven? This Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven.”
2. "the Lord himself will descend from heaven..." - 1 Th 4:15-17
1 Thessalonians 4:15–17 ESV
15 For this we declare to you by a word from the Lord, that we who are alive, who are left until the coming of the Lord, will not precede those who have fallen asleep. 16 For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 Then we who are alive, who are left, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we will always be with the Lord.

B. HE WILL COME "WITH THE CLOUDS"...

1. "This same Jesus...will so come in like manner as you saw Him go into heaven" - Ac 1:11 (referring to verse 9: "He was taken up, and a cloud received Him out of their sight")
2. "...in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air." - 1 Th 4:17
1 Thessalonians 4:17 ESV
17 Then we who are alive, who are left, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we will always be with the Lord.
3. "Behold, He is coming with clouds..." - Re 1:7
Revelation 1:7 ESV
7 Behold, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him, even those who pierced him, and all tribes of the earth will wail on account of him. Even so. Amen.

C. HE WILL COME WITHOUT WARNING...

1. "...the day of the Lord so comes as a thief in the night." - 1 Th 5:2
1 Thessalonians 5:2 ESV
2 For you yourselves are fully aware that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night.
2. "For when they say, 'Peace and safety!' then sudden destruction comes..." - 1 Th 5:3
1 Thessalonians 5:3 ESV
3 While people are saying, “There is peace and security,” then sudden destruction will come upon them as labor pains come upon a pregnant woman, and they will not escape.
3. "...the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night..." - 2 Pe 3:10
2 Peter 3:10 ESV
10 But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, and then the heavens will pass away with a roar, and the heavenly bodies will be burned up and dissolved, and the earth and the works that are done on it will be exposed.
[Of course, this unexpected coming of the Lord will not surprise the faithful, who seriously watch for the Lord's coming (cf. 1 Th 5:4-11). With joyful anticipation, they await the personal return of their Savior.
What will happen when the Lord returns? To answer this question we now consider...]

III.THE "PURPOSE" OF HIS COMING

A. TO RAISE THE DEAD...

1. "...for the hour is coming in which all who are in the graves will hear His voice and come forth..." - Jn 5:28-29
John 5:28–29 ESV
28 Do not marvel at this, for an hour is coming when all who are in the tombs will hear his voice 29 and come out, those who have done good to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil to the resurrection of judgment.
a. Note that there is but one resurrection, including both the good and evil, that will occur at one time ("the hour")
b. As Paul said, "...there will be a resurrection of the dead, both of the just and the unjust." - Ac 24:15
Acts 24:15 ESV
15 having a hope in God, which these men themselves accept, that there will be a resurrection of both the just and the unjust.
2. Those who are alive at the Lord's coming . . .
a. Will be "changed" in "the twinkling of an eye", being clothed with immortality and incorruption - 1 Co 15:50-54
1 Corinthians 15:50–54 ESV
50 I tell you this, brothers: flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable. 51 Behold! I tell you a mystery. We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, 52 in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed. 53 For this perishable body must put on the imperishable, and this mortal body must put on immortality. 54 When the perishable puts on the imperishable, and the mortal puts on immortality, then shall come to pass the saying that is written: “Death is swallowed up in victory.”
b. Then "caught up...to meet the Lord in the air." - 1 Th 4:16-18
1 Thessalonians 4:16–18 ESV
16 For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 Then we who are alive, who are left, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we will always be with the Lord. 18 Therefore encourage one another with these words.

B. TO DELIVER UP THE KINGDOM TO GOD...

1. Contrary to the view that Jesus has yet to establish His kingdom on earth, He has been ruling over His kingdom since He first ascended to heaven!
a. In fulfillment of the prophecy that God would raise up the Christ to sit on the "throne of David", Jesus was raised from the dead and made "Lord" - Ac 2:30-36
Acts 2:30–36 ESV
30 Being therefore a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him that he would set one of his descendants on his throne, 31 he foresaw and spoke about the resurrection of the Christ, that he was not abandoned to Hades, nor did his flesh see corruption. 32 This Jesus God raised up, and of that we all are witnesses. 33 Being therefore exalted at the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, he has poured out this that you yourselves are seeing and hearing. 34 For David did not ascend into the heavens, but he himself says, “ ‘The Lord said to my Lord, “Sit at my right hand, 35 until I make your enemies your footstool.” ’ 36 Let all the house of Israel therefore know for certain that God has made him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified.”
b. All authority in heaven and earth has been given unto Him - Mt 28:18
Matthew 28:18 ESV
18 And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.
1) He is far above all principality, power, might, and dominion, with all things placed under His feet - Ep 1:20-22
Ephesians 1:20–22 ESV
20 that he worked in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places, 21 far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come. 22 And he put all things under his feet and gave him as head over all things to the church,
2) At the right hand of God, angels and authorities and powers are made subject to Him - 1 Pe 3:22
1 Peter 3:22 ESV
22 who has gone into heaven and is at the right hand of God, with angels, authorities, and powers having been subjected to him.
c. Christians are said to be "in" His kingdom
1) Having been "delivered...from the power of darkness and translated into the kingdom of the Son of His love" - Co 1:13
Colossians 1:13 ESV
13 He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son,
2) They are "in the kingdom...of Jesus Christ" - Re 1:9
Revelation 1:9 ESV
9 I, John, your brother and partner in the tribulation and the kingdom and the patient endurance that are in Jesus, was on the island called Patmos on account of the word of God and the testimony of Jesus.
d. Christ will continue to reign "till He has put all enemies under His feet" - 1 Co 15:25
1 Corinthians 15:25 ESV
25 For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet.
1) Note that His reign will be concurrent with the fact enemies are still present
2) As prophesied by the Psalmist: "Rule in the midst of Your enemies!" - Psa 110:1-2
Psalm 110:1–2 ESV
1 The Lord says to my Lord: “Sit at my right hand, until I make your enemies your footstool.” 2 The Lord sends forth from Zion your mighty scepter. Rule in the midst of your enemies!
e. Thus Christ is NOW "the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings and Lord of Lords" - 1 Ti 6:15; cf. Re 19:16
1 Timothy 6:15 ESV
15 which he will display at the proper time—he who is the blessed and only Sovereign, the King of kings and Lord of lords,
Revelation 19:16 ESV
16 On his robe and on his thigh he has a name written, King of kings and Lord of lords.
f. And He will reign "till He has put all enemies under His feet" - 1 Co 15:25
1) The last enemy that will be destroyed is death itself - cf. 1 Co 15:26
1 Corinthians 15:26 ESV
26 The last enemy to be destroyed is death.
2) Which we have seen will be destroyed at the coming of the Lord when He will raise the dead - 1 Co 15:51-54
1 Corinthians 15:51–54 ESV
51 Behold! I tell you a mystery. We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, 52 in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed. 53 For this perishable body must put on the imperishable, and this mortal body must put on immortality. 54 When the perishable puts on the imperishable, and the mortal puts on immortality, then shall come to pass the saying that is written: “Death is swallowed up in victory.”
2. So when Jesus comes, it will not be to "set up" His kingdom, but to "deliver up" His kingdom!
a. As Paul clearly told the Corinthians - 1 Co 15:23-26
b. As taught by Jesus in His Parable of the Tares
1) His kingdom will last until "the end of this age"
2) After which "the righteous will shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father" (i.e., the heavenly kingdom) - cf. Mt 13:36-43
Matthew 13:36–43 ESV
36 Then he left the crowds and went into the house. And his disciples came to him, saying, “Explain to us the parable of the weeds of the field.” 37 He answered, “The one who sows the good seed is the Son of Man. 38 The field is the world, and the good seed is the sons of the kingdom. The weeds are the sons of the evil one, 39 and the enemy who sowed them is the devil. The harvest is the end of the age, and the reapers are angels. 40 Just as the weeds are gathered and burned with fire, so will it be at the end of the age. 41 The Son of Man will send his angels, and they will gather out of his kingdom all causes of sin and all law-breakers, 42 and throw them into the fiery furnace. In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. 43 Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the kingdom of their Father. He who has ears, let him hear.
[As suggested by the Parable of the Tares, delivering up the kingdom to the Father requires some "weeding". This leads us to consider another purpose of our Lord's coming...]

C. TO JUDGE THE WORLD AND PUNISH EVIL...

1. God has appointed "a day" in which He will judge the world - 2 Pe 3:7
2 Peter 3:7 ESV
7 But by the same word the heavens and earth that now exist are stored up for fire, being kept until the day of judgment and destruction of the ungodly.
a. The one appointed to be the Judge is Jesus Christ - Ac 17:31; 2 Co 5:10
Acts 17:31 ESV
31 because he has fixed a day on which he will judge the world in righteousness by a man whom he has appointed; and of this he has given assurance to all by raising him from the dead.”
2 Corinthians 5:10 ESV
10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may receive what is due for what he has done in the body, whether good or evil.
b. The standard by which He will judge will be the words He has spoken - Jn 12:48
John 12:48 ESV
48 The one who rejects me and does not receive my words has a judge; the word that I have spoken will judge him on the last day.
2. It will be a day of perdition (utter destruction) of ungodly men - 2 Pe 3:7
2 Peter 3:7 ESV
7 But by the same word the heavens and earth that now exist are stored up for fire, being kept until the day of judgment and destruction of the ungodly.
a. Those who know not God and have not obeyed the gospel will be punished with "everlasting destruction" - 2 Th 1:7-10
2 Thessalonians 1:7–10 ESV
7 and to grant relief to you who are afflicted as well as to us, when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with his mighty angels 8 in flaming fire, inflicting vengeance on those who do not know God and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. 9 They will suffer the punishment of eternal destruction, away from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of his might, 10 when he comes on that day to be glorified in his saints, and to be marveled at among all who have believed, because our testimony to you was believed.
b. Those whose names are not in the "Book of Life" will be cast into the "lake of fire" - Re 20:11-15
Revelation 20:11–15 ESV
11 Then I saw a great white throne and him who was seated on it. From his presence earth and sky fled away, and no place was found for them. 12 And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Then another book was opened, which is the book of life. And the dead were judged by what was written in the books, according to what they had done. 13 And the sea gave up the dead who were in it, Death and Hades gave up the dead who were in them, and they were judged, each one of them, according to what they had done. 14 Then Death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire. 15 And if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.
3. More about the "judgment" will be considered in a future lesson . . .

D. TO USHER IN THE "NEW HEAVENS AND NEW EARTH"...

1. As taught by Peter - 2 Pe 3:10-14
2 Peter 3:10–14 ESV
10 But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, and then the heavens will pass away with a roar, and the heavenly bodies will be burned up and dissolved, and the earth and the works that are done on it will be exposed. 11 Since all these things are thus to be dissolved, what sort of people ought you to be in lives of holiness and godliness, 12 waiting for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be set on fire and dissolved, and the heavenly bodies will melt as they burn! 13 But according to his promise we are waiting for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells. 14 Therefore, beloved, since you are waiting for these, be diligent to be found by him without spot or blemish, and at peace.
a. This will follow the "passing away" of the present heavens and earth (10-12)
b. It is in fulfillment of God's promise (13; cf. Isa 65:17-19; 66:22-23)
Isaiah 65:17–19 ESV
17 “For behold, I create new heavens and a new earth, and the former things shall not be remembered or come into mind. 18 But be glad and rejoice forever in that which I create; for behold, I create Jerusalem to be a joy, and her people to be a gladness. 19 I will rejoice in Jerusalem and be glad in my people; no more shall be heard in it the sound of weeping and the cry of distress.
Isaiah 66:22–23 ESV
22 “For as the new heavens and the new earth that I make shall remain before me, says the Lord, so shall your offspring and your name remain. 23 From new moon to new moon, and from Sabbath to Sabbath, all flesh shall come to worship before me, declares the Lord.
c. It is something we are to "look for" (13-14)
d. It will be a realm where righteousness dwells, therefore the need for us to be found "in peace, without spot and blameless" when Christ returns (13-14)
2. As taught by John - Re 21:1-22:5
a. It will follow after the first heaven and first earth have "passed away" (1, cf. 20:11)
b. It will be the place where the "New Jerusalem" will abide when it "comes down out of heaven" (2; cf. 3:10c; 21:10)
c. God will dwell with us in this "New Jerusalem" that has "come down out of heaven" (3-27; 22:1-5)

CONCLUSION

1. The "purpose" of Jesus' second coming can be summed up by His statement in Re 22:12...
Revelation 22:12 ESV
12 “Behold, I am coming soon, bringing my recompense with me, to repay each one for what he has done.
"And behold, I am coming quickly, and My reward is with Me, to give to every one according to his work."
2. That Jesus has not yet come is only an indication of God's long-suffering (2 Pe 3:8-9), but rest assured that "day" will one day come!
2 Peter 3:8–9 ESV
8 But do not overlook this one fact, beloved, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. 9 The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.
3. In succeeding lessons, I intend to examine more closely several of the subjects mentioned in this lesson
4. In the meantime, what should be our attitude be toward the coming of our Lord?
a. One of prayerful preparation - Lk 21:34-36; 2 Pe 3:14
b. One of joyful expectation - Ph 3:20-21
c. One of patient endurance - He 10:35-39
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