Summary: 2nd Coming: The Rapture (PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request - email: firstname.lastname@example.org)
Reading: 1 Thessalonians chapter 4 verses 13-18.
When General Douglas MacArthur was at Army training college, he tells this story:
• The first section was studying the time-space relationship;
• Later formulated by Einstein as his Theory of Relativity.
• The text was complex and, being unable to comprehend it,
• I committed the pages to memory.
• When I was called upon to recite,
• I solemnly reeled off almost word for word what the book said.
• Our instructor, Colonel Fieberger, looked at me somewhat quizzically and asked,
• “Do you understand this theory?”
• It was a bad moment for me, but I did not hesitate in replying, “No, sir.”
• You could have heard a pin drop. I braced myself and waited.
• And then the slow words of the professor:
• “Neither do I, Mr. MacArthur. Section dismissed.”
• Gen. Douglas MacArthur in Reminiscences;
• Recalling a stratagem he carried out while at West Point.
Well tonight I am not out to confuse you with complicated theories:
• But we are going to look at an important New Testament teaching;
• That is ‘The Second Coming’.
• ‘The 2nd Coming’ is a term applied to the literal return of Jesus Christ to planet earth.
• If there is a second coming, it follows that there must have been a first.
• The first coming of Christ was His incarnation when He was born.
• And in a few weeks time virtually the whole world will celebrate this event.
• But what about his second coming?
• Will there be a second coming and if so how and why?
Question 1: Will he come again?
Answer 1: The answer to that first question is yes, he will come again!
• If you believe the Bible, then the second coming of Jesus is a fact in future history;
• It is not a question of ‘WILL HE’ but ‘WHEN WILL HE’ come again!
• Just as the Old Testament is saturated with prophecies concerning Christ’s first advent,
• So both testaments are filled with references to the second coming of Christ.
• One scholar has estimated that there are 1,845 references to Christ’s second coming in the Old Testament, where 17 books give it prominence.
• In the 260 chapters of the New Testament,
• There are 318 references to the second advent of Christ;
• An amazing 1 out of every 30 verses.
• Twenty-three of the 27 New Testament books refer to this great event.
• For every prophecy in the Bible concerning Christ’s first advent,
• There are 8 which look forward to His second!
If we take this book seriously:
• And I hope we do!
• Then we can be confident, certain that the Lord is coming again!
Quote: In fact even the very last words of the Bible say:
“He who testifies to these things says, Yes, I am coming soon. Amen. Come, Lord Jesus”.
2nd Question: How will he come?
• In the gospels;