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Messiah's Return
July 14, 2017
Relevance: Chapter 7, Restored by Grace


The Messiah's Return


The picture shows the Old City of Jerusalem today with the Mount of Olives in the distance. The tallest steeple on the Mount belongs to the Russian Orthodox Church near the Chapel of the Ascension.

Luke tells us that, after his resurrection, Jesus showed himself to the apostles for forty days. He was then taken up before their very eyes, on a hill called the Mount of Olives, which is about one kilometer from Jerusalem on the east. (See Acts 1:3, 9-12)

While the apostles were looking intently up into the sky as he was going, two angels appeared and said to them, "Men of Galilee, why are you standing here staring into heaven? Jesus has been taken from you into heaven, but someday he will return from heaven in the same way you saw him go!" (Acts 1:11).

Angels never spoke in riddles to the people they were sent to. Their instructions were always plain and direct. Likewise, in this case, the description of Jesus's second coming is simple and visual. It will be the physically visible, bodily return of the same Jesus, from heaven back down to the Mount of Olives. Zechariah prophesied, about five hundred years before the birth of Jesus, "On that day his feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, east of Jerusalem" (Zechariah 14:4).

So if someone tells you that Jesus has returned in spirit form or the form of another person, somewhere other than the Mount of Olives, that is a blatant lie. Or, if someone tells you a specific date or time of Jesus's return, that is also a lie because Jesus himself said, "no one knows the day or hour when these things will happen, not even the angels in heaven or the Son himself. Only the Father knows." (Matthew 24:36)

But Jesus did tell the disciples the signs pointing to the imminence of his return. He said about those signs, "when you see all these things, you know that it is near, right at the door." (Matthew 24:33). He stressed again later, "Therefore keep watch, because you do not know the day or the hour." (Matthew 25:13)

The expectancy about the Messiah's return powerfully reminds us to live a godly life and to keep a heavenly perspective on everything.

Jesus’s return also means the end of the grace period for many because of the cataclysmic events preceding it. So we should pray and work hard to bring people to Christ. Each of us surely has a unique role to play in God's grand plan of spreading the good news of redemption, from being active instruments of direct evangelism to being agents who realize the goodness of God on earth. We should actively seek the will of God for our lives regarding this. (See RG, 152)


Notes:


From Darkness to Light
170504, Ch.1, What is Heaven?
170512, Ch.5, Good and Evil
170519, Ch.5, Image of God
170526, Ch.6, All Have Sinned
170602, Ch.6, Isaiah Prophecies
170609, Ch.6, Lamb of God
170616, Ch.6, Decision Prayer

New Life in Christ
170623, Ch.7, Fruit of the Spirit
170630, Ch.7, Time with God
170707, Ch.7, Life Together
170714, Ch.7, Messiah's Return
170728, Ch.7, Audacious Faith
171006, Ch.7, Mark of the Christian
171027, Ch.7, Christian Identities

Growing in Christ
171110, Know the Bible
171210, Christ is Central
180302, Satan Exposed

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