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Text Sermons : Classic Christian Writings : Waiting For Jesus By Rich Carmicheal

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"...But now he has appeared once for all at the end of the age to do away with sin by the sacrifice of himself...he will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for him" (Hebrews 9:26-28).

One of the clearest and most important messages of the New Testament is that Jesus is going to come again. Often in our desire to understand this Second Coming, we concentrate upon its timing and the events associated with it. While there is value in studying and contemplating the when, what and how of the Second Coming, the most important concern for us is Who is returning. Jesus is coming again. We have heard that truth so many times that it is too easy to miss the indescribable significance of those words: Jesus is coming again. Jesus...

...the One who died for us while we were yet sinners (Rom. 5:8).

...the One who "loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood" (Rev. 1:5).

...the One who is "our righteousness, holiness and redemption" (1 Cor. 1:30).

...the One who rescues us from the present evil age (Gal. 1:4) as well as from the coming wrath (1 Thess. 1:10).

...the One whom God has exalted to the highest place and given a name that is above every name (Phil. 2:9).

...the One who is "the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation" (Col. 1:15).

...the One who is "the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of His being, sustaining all things by His powerful word" (Heb. 1:3).

...the One "in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge" (Col. 2:3).

...the One "who gave Himself as a ransom for all men..." (1 Tim. 2:6).

...the One "who has destroyed death and has brought life and immortality to light through the gospel" (2 Tim. 1:10).

...the One "who gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own" (Titus 2:14).

...the One who is "the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him" (Heb. 5:8-9).

...the One whose blood cleanses our consciences (Heb. 9:14) and purifies us from all sin (1 John 1:7).

...the One who is "...the author and perfector of our faith..." (Heb. 12:2).

...the One who is our life (Col. 3:4).

...the One who "bore our sins in his body on the tree" (1 Peter 2:24).

...the One who "laid down his life for us" (1 John 3:16).

...the One who redeemed us with His precious blood, "a lamb without blemish or defect" (1 Peter 1:18-19).

...the Lamb who was slain and with His blood "purchased men for God from every tribe and language and people and nation" (Rev. 5:9) and who is worthy "to receive power and wealth and wisdom and strength and honor and glory and praise!" (Rev. 5:12).

...the One "who speaks to the Father in our defense--Jesus Christ, the Righteous One" (1 John 2:1).

...the One who is "the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the ruler of God’s creation" (Rev. 3:14).

...the One who is "the Lord of lords and the King of kings" (Rev. 17:14).

...the One who "is called Faithful and True" (Rev. 19:11).

...the Living One, the One who was dead and is alive for ever and ever, the One who holds the keys of death and Hades (Rev. 1:17-18), "...the Alpha and Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End" (Rev. 22:13).

That is Who is coming. Jesus is coming. How marvelous the Day will be when He returns!

Actively Waiting

Until then, we wait. As the Apostle Paul writes, "...we wait for the blessed hope--the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ" (Titus 2:13). He also writes that "we eagerly await a Savior...the Lord Jesus..." (Phil. 3:20). And, like the Thessalonian Christians, we have "turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God, and to wait for His Son from heaven" (1 Thess. 1:9-10).

However, we are not to wait passively. Instead, we are to take advantage of the opportunity we have to prepare for the arrival of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. We need to be ready to meet Him when He returns.

The Scriptures give clear instructions on how we should live as we anticipate Christ’s return. For example, we are to watch expectantly for Him. Jesus exhorts us to "Be on guard! Be alert! You do not know when that time will come...What I say to you, I say to everyone: ‘Watch!’" (Mark 13:33,37). We need to continually keep in mind that Jesus is coming again. We are "not to be like others, who are asleep, but let us be alert..." (1 Thess. 5:6). Our minds are to be prepared for action (1 Pet. 1:13).

We also need to give up sin and pursue godliness. The Apostle Paul reminds us that the "night is nearly over; the day is almost here. So let us put aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light. Let us behave decently, as in the daytime, not in sexual immorality and debauchery, not in dissension and jealousy" (Rom. 13:12-13). He also writes that we are to "say ‘No’ to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age, while we wait for the blessed hope..." (Titus 2:12-13). Jesus is going to return for a bride (the church) who has made herself ready (Rev. 19:7). He gave Himself up in order to make the church holy and radiant, "without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish..." (Eph 5:25-27). As we look forward to Christ’s return, let us turn from sin and allow the Holy Spirit to develop holiness in our lives.

We also need to work hard for the Lord as we wait, knowing that our labor in the Lord is not in vain (1 Cor. 15:58). We need to keep in mind that as we work hard and serve others in His name, we are actually serving Him (Matthew 25:40; Col. 3:23). May He find us faithfully doing His business when He returns!

"Come, Lord Jesus"

That Day is coming. More importantly, Jesus is coming. What a glorious day that will be for those who are prepared for Him. As we eagerly wait for His return, let us live godly lives and serve Him faithfully.

Jesus says, "Behold, I am coming soon!"

And we say, "Come, Lord Jesus."

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