Summary: A heavily edited sermon from the series, "The Return of the King" available on Sermon Central, we look at the biblical prophecies regarding the return of our King Jesus
Getting Caught Up
Return of the King: Week 3
For the past two weeks we’ve been learning about Jesus’ Second Coming. In Revelation 22, He said He would be coming, and coming soon.
What Jesus’ second coming is supposed to do for us as HIS followers is give us something to look forward to.
Do you know what December 11th of this year represents?
My nursing school graduation. 222 days and a wake up.
I’ve been in the process for three years, and hopefully if I can pass my finals in a few weeks, December 11th will be the day I get to look forward to finally being a registered nurse.
All the sleepless nights, all the stress, all the work will finally be worth it.
I want you to stop for a moment and think about something you are looking forward to or have longed for in life and finally got to experience it or have it.
Pause. Remember that feeling of finally getting there or getting what you wanted? (soldiers coming home, pregnant moms finally birthing their babies, kids graduating high school and leaving home)
On of the wondrous abilities God gave us as humans is the capacity to think about the future. To look forward. To anticipate things that are coming.
Looking forward to something really good can get you through some really bad times.
This may be why God tells us so much and so often what His coming back will be like.
The Bible says that on the day Jesus returns, all of us who know Him are going to be all caught up in it. That’s the phrase Paul uses to describe what happens to humans when Jesus returns: we get caught up.
Here’s what he says:
The Lord himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the archangel’s voice, and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 Then we who are still 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. 1 Thessalonians 4:16-18
Do you remember jumping? After my parents split up, the money was gone, and I spent a few of my teen years living in what would politely call an economically disadvantaged area. The wrong side of the tracks.
In other words, I was a boy in the hood.
In the hood, there was really only one game to play, and that was basketball.
Now, being short, and not particularly good at shooting baskets, I was the last person to get picked to play when we had game. A lot of my friends who were much taller than I was, could jump high enough to actually dunk on me, which they did a lot- jump almost right over me and slam the ball down through the hoop.
If you get dunked on, it was the ultimate “In your Face!” move.
I used to dream of being able to jump that high and dunking on people.
Imagine being able to slam dunk a basketball. Can anyone here do it?
Now imagine without any effort on your part- floating upward.
That’s what will happen at the moment of Jesus’ return. We will be “caught up.” The word in the original language means to be seized or snatched up with a sudden swoop.
But we still may have a little time left.
Friend, between now and then, you and I are going to go through many days where it feels like the coming of winter. After that most wonderful time of the year, known as deer hunting season, when the temperature gets colder and our days get shorter.
But, God gave us this promise, to get us through this time to look forward to so we can live in hope and anticipation.
So, during this third installment of our “Return of the King” series, I want to walk you through a timeline leading up to the minute of Christ’s return.
- And I want to show you what that return will be like,
- and how you’ll experience it if it happens while you’re still alive.
- And I want to show you on the timeline of history, when most Biblical scholars think that moment will happen.
Even though we are dealing with the end times, and that can be kind of frightening to think about- Jesus tells us to look forward in anticipation to these times, because HE WINS, and therefore, WE WIN.
Keep that in mind as we continue because in order to understand what the return of Christ will be like, it’s helpful to understand when His return will be.