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The careful student of the Scriptures cannot avoid the conviction that from the time our Lord was taken up from the midst of His friends, they waited and watched for His appearing again. When they went down into the grave, they left their believing and longing expectation as a precious legacy to those coming after them.
The Thessalonians, for example, are described as those who had "turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God; and to wait for His Son from heaven, whom He raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come" (1 Thess. 1:9-10). These first Christians waited for Jesus to come from heaven.
He had said to His disciples, when speaking of His second coming: "Of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but My Father only" (Matt. 24:36), and again,"He said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in His own power" (Acts 1:7).
Hence, it was not revealed even to the Apostles when He will come again, but they were themselves taught and instructed to teach others to look for Him continually. As the Church in all ages constitutes the one body and bride of Christ, it is the proper attitude of the bride to be always waiting for the coming of the Bridegroom.
The Father has guarded most carefully against the possibility of our knowing the precise time of our Lords return. He wishes it to be the radiant object of Christian hope. While it engages our constant attention, it will separate us from entangling alliances with the world and uphold us amid its conflicts and keep us in close and dear communion with Himself.
"Surely I come quickly" were the very last words Scripture records as falling from Christs lips (Rev. 22:20). But, alas, what a vast number of His disciples have ceased to expect Him, and perhaps, have even ceased to desire Him! If we are what and where we ought to be, the eager response will go forth from our lips, "Even so, come, Lord Jesus!" If we are true Christians, "our conversation [or citizenship] is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ: who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto His glorious body, according to the working whereby He is able even to subdue all things unto Himself" (Phil. 3:20-21).