Jesus is coming soon! These words encourage and inspire believers around the world. We celebrate His first coming at Christmas every year. We understand the signs preceding His first coming and when He came. First, we must realize that His coming was a supernatural event that broke natural laws. It also superseded everything that had happened from the creation of the world. The very Creator God humbled Himself and came to earth in human form through a virgin, which is biologically impossible. The human mind cannot comprehend a being that is totally God and totally human. It can be accepted for the fact that it is, but not fully comprehended.
We all enjoy the Christmas story about the Savior coming to earth: how the shepherds came to the stable to see the child the angels had told them about lying in a manger, the angels glorifying God before these men, the spiritual realm interfacing with the physical realm, supernatural events, many Old Testament prophecies fulfilled when He came, and many more to be fulfilled when He comes again. His life and how He was obedient and faithful to His Father also fulfilled the prophetic Word about Him. He was faithful through death and never sinned; no man before or after has done this. He was the only one qualified to be our redeemer.
At Christmas we celebrate His coming, but why was it necessary for Him to come? When Adam sinned, the world was cursed as part of the punishment for sin, but mankind was also separated from their Creator. God had a plan to redeem men, and Jesus had to fulfill the plan. The Old Testament law gave the qualifications for how a person could be redeemed. It explains that the redeemer had to be kin, related to the one being redeemed. No angel could become the redeemer because they are spiritual beings and not related to us created in the physical realm. The only one who could redeem mankind is a man, but that man had to be without sin. The only sacrifice acceptable to a perfect God was one without blemish, and in this case one without sin. Jesus had no spiritual blemishes and no physical blemishes either. He was the perfect sacrifice.
The trouble with the Jews in Jesus’ time, besides their hardness of heart, was that they were looking for a political leader to throw off the bonds of the Roman Empire. They were looking for what they wanted, not what they needed. God provided what they truly needed, rebirth into fellowship with God through His Son’s sacrifice on the cross. Calvary was the greatest supernatural event in history, changing forever the relationship between man and God. Man had been redeemed, the price of freedom paid, and there was now no condemnation for those who repented and believed in the Son of God.
Salvation only makes sense once you act in faith. A relationship with God is foolishness to a natural man. Only by being born again are you truly alive. Many religions believe they are spiritually alive when they are spiritually dead. Life-begats-life used to be a biological law not very long ago, but since it disproves the beginning of the evolutionary process, man repealed it. But man cannot repeal spiritual laws. Life begats life, and Jesus lives and holds life in His hands and gives that life to those who come to Him in faith and repentance. That spiritual law cannot be broken! No man comes to the Father except through the Son, Jesus Christ!
When Jesus was here the first time, He stated many things about His coming and the end of the age. He gave many parables about the Kingdom of Heaven. In Matthew, chapter 24, Jesus starts talking about the end times with an eight-word warning. “See to it that no one misleads you.” 1 He was warning us that many will come in His name, claiming to be the Christ, and will succeed in misleading many. How do you avoid being misled? Study the Scriptures every day! Search yourself to see if God is your highest priority, or like the seed sown in the thorns you have allowed “the worries of the world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the desires for other things enter in and choke the word, and it becomes unfruitful.” 2 The easiest way to be deceived is to not know what God has already revealed in His word.
Jesus tells us that we will be hearing of wars and rumors of wars. We are not to be frightened by this fact because it has to take place. He also said that wars and rumors of wars is not yet the end. There will also be famines and earthquakes in various places around the world. These things are merely the beginning of birth pangs.
“Then they will deliver you up to tribulation, and will kill you, and you will be hated by all nations on account of my name.” 3 Already our brothers and sisters around the world are persecuted for their faith in Jesus. In our own country, hatred to the things of Christ is steadily growing. Way too many people are ignorant about the things of God and basically are not interested. Many will fall away and betray one another and hate one another. 4 The growth of hate in our society will only grow worse, before He returns.
There are many false prophets already out there. The health and wealth preachers, the name-it-claim-it preachers, and those who preach anything but purely from the revealed Scriptures are false prophets. One preacher even claimed God made different colors of men, not just Adam and Eve. That is theologically illogical because sin entered through Adam (and Eve); if God had created other people, they would not have been responsible or judged for sins that were not their own. We inherited our flesh from Adam, our sin nature started there. How do you avoid false prophets? Study the Scriptures every day! Be like the Bereans; when someone tells you something, study the word of God to see if they are correct. When you go to church, have a Bible of your own to verify what is being said.
Lawlessness will increase. People will become more ungodly as the time of Christ’s return draws closer. One of God’s finest attributes is His perfect love, and as men become more ungodly, their love will grow cold and hate will grow. “Most people’s love will grow cold.” 5 We have the promise that the gospel of the Kingdom will go to all the nations, and then the end will come.
“But the one who endures to the end, it is he who shall be saved.” 6 What a warning and what a promise wrapped together. We should persevere in our relationship with Christ, be like Peter when Jesus’ followers were leaving and He asked the disciples if they were leaving; Peter stated plainly, where else is there to go, you (Jesus) have the words of eternal life. We are warned throughout Scripture to be firm in our faith, to hold fast, to endure. Only then will you be saved.
When we see the Abomination of Desolation as spoken of by the prophet Daniel, we know the end of the age is here. There will be a great tribulation, such as has never been seen before and never will be seen again. So many new technologies are being developed now that the coming anti-Christ will be able to control the lives of every person on the planet and submit them to his will. He will kill those who do not worship him. Everyone who follows Christ will be martyred. If those days had not been cut short, no life would have been saved. For the sake of the chosen ones those days will be cut short. 7 “Behold, I have told you in advance.” 8 Jesus took the time to tell the apostles these things so we would know and not be deceived.
Jesus also tells us that He will return in power and glory, there will be no mistaking it. The “moonies” believe their leader to be the second coming of Christ. They only had to read Matthew 24:27 to know he is not the Christ. “For just as the lightning comes from the east, and flashes even to the west, so shall the coming of the Son of Man be.” When the Lord returns, there will be no question about His coming. It is not an event you will miss, saved or unsaved.
That day and hour Jesus returns no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, not the son, but the father alone. 9 Since we do not know when He will return, what should we do? Scripture answers that for us: “Therefore be on the alert, for you do not know which day your Lord is coming.” 10 “For this reason you be ready too: for the Son of Man is coming at an hour when you do not think He will.” 11 Just like the parable of the ten virgins teaches us, be prepared for his coming!
This is just a small amount of information God has revealed about His Son’s second coming. We have great promises and great responsibilities. Our great responsibility is to reach the lost before time runs out for this generation. Whether you believe in pre-trib, mid-trib, post-trib, or pan-trib, His coming is not the question here. What is important is if you are ready for His coming. He is coming soon! Come even now, Lord Jesus!