Summary: The One whose coming I’m looking forward to this morning won’t be coming from the North Pole & riding in a sleigh. Instead, He’s coming from Heaven, & arriving on the clouds of the sky! (PowerPoint available - #183)
Jesus is coming! And we need to be ready for that day. So let's take time this morning to consider this seriously, & to be excited about His coming & about the importance of having our hearts prepared for that day.
ILL. Isn't it fun to watch the excitement grow on the faces of little children as Christmas Day approaches? With each passing day the smiles increase, the adrenaline rises, & the expectation almost bursts forth from every pore.
Children are excited about the coming of a roly-poly man in a red suit with toys in his bag. But you & I should be even more excited than that! For we are awaiting the arrival of our King in all His glory, coming on the clouds of heaven.
Do you realize that we've been told to look forward to His coming? In 2 Peter 3:11-12, Peter asks a question, "What kind of people ought you to be?" Then Peter answers his own question by saying, "You ought to live holy & godly lives as you look forward to the day of God & speed its coming."
That anticipation was certainly a driving force for the early Christians. In the last verses of the last book in the Bible, John writes, "He who testifies to these things says, 'Yes, I am coming soon.' Amen. Come, Lord Jesus." (Revelation 22:20)
Isn't that wonderful? Jesus tells John, "Yes, I am coming soon" & John replies, "Amen. Come, Lord Jesus!" That should be our attitude, too.
Some may say, "OK, I'll look forward to the coming of Jesus, but how will He come, when will He come, & why is He coming anyway?" Those are good questions, & it's important that we know what the Bible says about them.
I. HOW WILL JESUS RETURN?
First of all, "How will Jesus return?" Well, we don't have to wonder about that, because the Bible quite clearly tells us how Jesus will return. Jesus Himself answered that in Matthew 24:30-31.
"At that time the sign of the Son of Man will appear in the sky, & all the nations of the earth will mourn. They will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of the sky, with power & great glory.
“And He will send His angels with a loud trumpet call, & they will gather His elect from the four winds, from one end of the heavens to the other."
Every eye will see him, & every knee will bow before Him, & every tongue will confess that He is Lord! And this time He's coming with power & glory!
II. WHEN WILL JESUS COME?
Hopefully we've settled how Jesus will come, but when will He come? This is a problem for some because as a people we like to be prepared. Most of us will be prepared for Christmas because we have a deadline to work with.
We know that we need to have our presents bought by Christmas Day, or else. But the problem we have with the coming of Jesus is that we don't know when He will return, we only know that He is coming.
Jesus spoke of this in Matthew 24:37-44, "As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man.
“For in the days before the flood, people were eating & drinking, marrying & giving in marriage, up to the day Noah entered the ark; & they knew nothing about what would happen until the flood came & took them all away.