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Jesus is coming
Indeed, since the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead and His ascension into Heaven, people over the centuries have eagerly looked forward to His promised second coming. In fact, Christ’s followers in the first century used to greet each other daily, “maranatha”; meaning “Jesus is coming soon.” Thrice in the last chapter of the book of the Revelation we read:
“Look, I am coming soon! Blessed are those who obey the words of prophecy written in this book”. (Revelation 22:7 NLT)
“Look, I am coming soon, bringing my reward with me to repay all people according to their deeds”. (Revelation 22:12 NLT)
“He who is the faithful witness to all these things says, "Yes, I am coming soon!" Amen! Come, Lord Jesus!”. (Revelation 22:20 NLT)
We will discuss the coming of Jesus from the narrative on it in the Gospel of Matthew 24:33-44.
First, Jesus is coming soon: When? The Bible says, “concerning that day and hour no one knows, not even the Angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father only”. (Matthew 24:36). So, we can authoritatively say, the search for the date and time of Jesus’s second coming is over. Human beings and Angels do not know the date and time. They cannot know it.
Over the centuries people have messed up again and again predicting the time of the second coming of Christ and when the world will come to an end. Some religious cults have strangely shifted their dates for the end of the world a number of times. Human revelations on the date and time of the second coming of Christ are bound to be false. Even in Ghana we had the episode of “the Jesus of Dzorwulu”. We are to completely ignore any announcements of the arrival of any of the so-called “Jesus” here, or there, by human beings!!
Second, Jesus is coming: How will it be like? What can we compare it to? The nature of the times around which the second coming of Jesus will happen is, “as were the days of Noah, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. “For as in those days before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage until the day when Noah entered the ark, and they were unaware until the flood came and swept them all away, so will be the coming of the Son of Man”.
(Matthew 24:37-39 ESV). In the days of Noah before the earth was destroyed by the flood waters, people were too much full of achieving their desire for marriage; and too much controlled by their own pleasures and needs. People have no hunger to concentrate on Jesus their maker and on eternal things. And so the trumpet sounds to fold up human history as we know it, and they have no rescue!
And what should definitely catch our attention is that when Jesus comes “two men will be in the field; one will be taken and one left. Two women will be grinding at the mill; one will be taken and one left”. (Matthew 24:40-41 ESV). Amazing. Two women will be in the corn-mill, one will be taken, one will be left. Two men in the Men’s fellowship of the Church, one will be taken, one will be left. Two people in the Prayer tower team, one be taken and one left!! And so on. Will you be the one Christ will take with Him back to Heaven? Why?
Thirdly, Jesus is coming: At an hour you don’t expect. So two things are required of us:
“Therefore, stay awake, for you do not know on what day your Lord is coming”. (Matthew 24:42 ESV) and “therefore you also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect”. (Matthew 24:44 ESV)
Jesus will take with Him, those who “stay awake” and those “who are ready”. And so the very important and practical question is: “how do we get ready to meet Jesus, any day, any time”?
To respond to this question let’s look at the following three Bible texts:
“Since all these things are thus to be dissolved, what sort of people ought you to be in lives of holiness and godliness, waiting for and hastening the coming of the day of God. Therefore, beloved, since you are waiting for these, be diligent to be found by him without spot or blemish, and at peace”. (2 Peter 3:11-12a.14 ESV)
When Christ comes, “we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is. And everyone who thus hopes in him purifies himself as he is pure”. (1 John 3:2b-3 ESV). Christ is coming, clean up your mess!!
That is why the Bible clearly says: “Strive for peace with everyone, and for the holiness without which no one will see the Lord”. (Hebrews 12:14 ESV) Are you ready to meet Jesus any day, any time?
Finally, we are not to remain asleep in the darkness of sin, wickedness, unlove and apathy to God and the things of God
This is how we are to be ready and awake:
- a) In earnest, prevailing prayers. Pray without ceasing. We are to watch and pray.
- b) In seeking first, the kingdom of God. Be sure to experience new life in Christ and help others to experience new life in Christ. When you experience New Life in Christ, you have gained the holiness passport that takes you to heaven!
- c) In living a lifestyle of moral purity and godliness with integrity.
King Jesus is coming. Clean up, be awake and be prepared to meet Him joyfully!
(The author is a consultant in authentic Christian Spirituality and Discipleship and former CEO of Scripture Union)