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The Coming of the Lord

By Benjamin H. Liles

          But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat; both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up. Therefore, since all these things will be dissolved, what manner of persons ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness, ~ 2 Peter 3:10-11, NKJV

          But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, and then the heavens will vanish with a [mighty and thunderous] roar, and the [material] elements will be destroyed with intense heat, and the earth and the works that are on it will be burned up. Since all these things are to be destroyed in this way, what kind of people ought you to be [in the meantime] in holy behavior [that is, in a pattern of daily life that sets you apart as a believer] and in godliness [displaying profound reverence toward our awesome God]. ~ 2 Peter 3:10-11, AMP
          Events such as what happen in Revelation and with Jesus coming back for His elect are a hard subject to talk about. Still Peter, Paul, and John knew of which they spoke about. They had seen the risen Lord, Jesus Christ, His nailed pierced hands and feet, and also watched as He ascended into Heaven. An angel had this pronouncement, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand here looking into the sky? This same Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen him go into heaven “ (Acts 1:11, Berean Study).
          We need to understand that as Christians we are to live our lives pleasing to Jesus Christ. It means that when we are saved by and through His merciful and loving graciousness which He gave us at the cross we desire to live a life that pleases Him. It means putting off sin, its effects, and walking in newness of life as He gave it in abundance to us.
           Where with the Lord’s return people will mourn upon seeing Him, the elect (His Church), however rejoice as they know He is taking them up to be with Him forever in Heaven. Many people who are unsaved believe Heaven is a boring place. While I personally have never been I can attest with others that there will be praise, worship, and honoring God in everything and in every which way.
          Paul says, "For you are fully aware that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night" (1 Thessalonians 5:2). Isaiah records, "The earth is broken asunder, The earth is split through, The earth is shaken violently. The earth is broken asunder, The earth is split through, The earth is shaken violently. Lift up your eyes to the sky, Then look to the earth beneath; For the sky will vanish like smoke, And the earth will wear out like a garment And its inhabitants will die in like manner; But My salvation will be forever, And My righteousness will not wane" (Isaiah 24:19, 34:4, 51:6). Micah says of the Lord, "The mountains will melt under Him and the valleys will be split, like wax before the fire, like water poured down a steep place" (Micah 1:4).
           There are a number of people who are ready and able to see Jesus return. They have Him in their hearts. They know He's fulfilled scripture in the past, so there's no doubt He will return, why would an angel declare "who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in t he same way you have seen him go into heaven" (Acts 1:11).
          I finish this by quoting Paul's words, "And do this, understanding the occasion. The hour has come for you to wake up from your slumber, for our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed. The night is nearly over; the day has drawn near. So let us lay aside the deeds of the darkness and put on the armor of light" (Romans 13:11-12). We know Jesus will come again, just as when He left. It's not a question of when, but for us it's a question of How. How ought we live and to prove ourselves as His? We ought to put off all things that hinder us from walking in Him, in His light, putting off all deeds of death, putting away sin so we may be more like Him.
           It's not so much a question of needing to put off sin before we come to Him, for that comes over time, as we walk firmly, sure in our faith. We can do these things because He never sinned. Christ, before He died on the cross in our place, did all the Father commanded of Him. He gave sight to the blind, He gave us a way to be healed (when we desire it), and He is our Savior when we trust Him. We should be glad He will return, for it will mark our faith in Him and His ability. In the name of Jesus I pray. Amen.