Summary: When the prophets prophesied about Christ’s first coming, they weren’t wrong. Christ Himself and the prophets even prophesied about His second coming. If their first prophecy was right on dot, why not the second? Let us look at it from Biblical and Godly
Opening illustration: A pilot’s flying over a mountainous terrain, and as he’s flying, he looks down to see two vehicles driving down the highway. The first vehicle is a semi-trailer, pulling his load up and down that ol’ highway. The second vehicle is a sports car driven by a guy who’s got better things to do than be stuck behind a semi that can’t always maintain the speed limit up the mountain grades. Well, what the pilot can see that the drivers can’t is that there is no traffic coming the other way. The car could easily pass the truck with no danger. The problem is that neither the truck nor the car driver can see that. They can only see what’s immediately in front of them. They can’t see the big picture.
You see, we only see things from the perspective of the created, not the Creator. We don’t see the big picture. Only God does.
This morning we will be looking into God’s Word to get a godly and biblical perspective of Christ’s second coming (return).
Introduction: About 1/3 of the Bible is prophecy ... Both the Old and New Testaments are full of promises about the return of Jesus Christ. Over 1800 references appear in the O.T., and seventeen O.T. books give prominence to this theme. Of the 260 chapters in the N.T., there are more than 300 references to the Lord’s return--one out of every 30 verses. Twenty-three of the 27 N.T. books refer to this great event...For every prophecy on the first coming of Christ, there are 8 on Christ’s second coming."
1. Will Christ come?
(a) The Good News
Most people do not believe Jesus Christ will return to earth. Considering that Christians are a minority of inhabitants of the world, this fact is obvious. What is surprising is that in the United States, where the majority of the population professes Christianity, only some six out of 10 believe in the second coming. Those who do believe that Jesus will come again are further divided over whether it will be a literal return. Many think that good people, through the leadership of the church, will bring about a utopian age, making it unnecessary for Jesus to actually come down from heaven. From this perspective, many believe He will return only symbolically. The people of the Islamic faith believe that Christ will return and then become a Muslim, quite absurd. The Jews believe the Messiah has yet to come, so far He has not even come once, thus refuting Christ to be the Lord, God and Messiah. For them deliverance means a physical one. The Hindu scriptures talk about Christ’s death on the tree for salvation of the world, but they just don’t see it. Jesus repeatedly said that no one would know the day nor hour of His second coming (Matthew 24: 36, 50; 25: 13). Of course, that hasn’t prevented many from trying their hand at prediction. Many well-intentioned religious figures have set dates, prophesying Christ’s return at various times over the centuries. Those dates have all passed without the great event taking place. Was the promise of Jesus’ return simply an empty pledge, a vain attempt to foster hope in weak people who need the crutch of the hopeful expectation inherent in the gospel message? Was Jesus merely a great leader who imparted to mankind lofty humanitarian ideals? Or can we believe in the literal return of Jesus Christ?