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Why Jesus Must Return
  1. Intro
  2. The Promise of God Demands It
  •  The Old Testament is chock full of prophecy related to the coming of Jesus
  • The first promise is found in Genesis 3:15 when God promised that the seed of the woman would crush the serpents head. That seed was Jesus.
  • In the closing of the final book on the Old Testament in Malachi 4:2 it says “The Sun of Righteousness shall arise with healing in His wings.”
  • In all there are some 333 distinct promises from God related to the coming Deliver.
  • More than 100 of those were literally fulfilled with the coming of Jesus Christ.
  • For example: Isaiah said He’d be born of a virgin, Micah foresaw Bethlehem as His birthplace, Isaiah said He’d be a descendent of Jesse. Zechariah said He’d enter Jerusalem riding on the foal of a Donkey.
  • On and on the promises go.
  • But the prophecies in the Old Testament about Jesus’ first coming are only 1/3 of the prophecies. 2/3 of them are related to the Second Coming of Christ.
  • All of the previous prophecies were literally fulfilled by Jesus, and the remaining 2/3 will be also.  How do we know that, simply because the others were literally fulfilled.
  • Look at this one super interesting reading of Scripture by Jesus.
  • Read Luke 4:17-21. Jesus stopped in the middle of a sentence out of Isaiah 61:1-3
  • Why?
  • Read Isaiah 61:1-3 – show stopping point.
  • Because the rest of this chapter goes on to describe the Millenial Kingdom of Christ.
  • There is passage after passage in the OT about the second coming of Christ. We don’t have time to look at all of them today.
  • Remember though in Titus 1:2 and Num 23:19 it says that God cannot lie and He will not change His mind. There is a day. Marked on His calendar when He will send Christ back as the conquering King!
  1. Christ’s Teaching Demands It
  • Jesus’ teaching is filled with the promise of the Second Coming. Whole chapters in the gospel are related just to that event.
  • John 14:2-3. If Jesus does not return, then He is a liar and is not the Son of God.
  • When Christ was on trial for His life, He boldly declared to the High Priest that “You will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of God, and coming with the clouds of Heaven.”
  • Jesus is right now preparing a place for you and I.
  • A gentleman visiting a certain school gave out that he would give a prize to the pupil whose desk he found in the best order when he returned. “But when will you return?” some of them asked.
  • “That I cannot tell,” was the answer. A little girl, who had been noted for her disorderly habits, announced that she meant to win the prize. “You!” her schoolmates jeered; “why, your desk is always out of order.”
  • “Oh! but I mean to clean it the first of every week.”
  • “But suppose he should come at the end of the week?” someone asked.
  • “Then I will clean it every morning.”
  • “But he may come at the end of the day.” For a moment the little girl was silent. “I know what I’ll do,” she said decidedly, “I’ll just keep it clean.”
  • Jesus repeatedly tells us to be ready for His return.
  • In Matt 24:27 Jesus told His disciples ‘as lightening comes from the east and flashes to the west, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be.’
  • Then in vs 30-31 He adds this description “ And then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in the sky, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of the sky with power and great glory. 31 And He will send forth His angels with a great trumpet and they will gather together His [a]elect from the four winds, from one end of the sky to the other.”
  • Look at the Parable Jesus gives in Luke 19. In the parable Jesus pictures a ruler who has gone into a far country to receive for Himself a kingdom and to return.
  • In vs 15 upon returning, ‘having received the kingdom.’ He executes judgment and distributes joint ruler ship to His servants who were faithful in His absence.’ That’s you and I folks.
  • We don’t full know what that means, but that’s literally what the Bible says.
  • Listen, there is a key point here, Christ wants both His friends and enemies to know that He is returning.
  • “The first time [Christ] came to slay sin in men. The second time He will come to slay men in sin.”
  •  ― Arthur W. Pink
  • “Bible teaching about the Second Coming of Christ was thought of as “doomsday” preaching. But not anymore. It is the only ray of hope that shines as an ever brightening beam in a darkening world.”
  •  ― Billy Graham, Billy Graham in Quotes
  • Friends, once He returns there is no other chance to be right with God. Get right today!
  1. His Plan for the Church Demands He Return
  • We know that God’s plan for the Church is for the groom to return for His bride.
  • Right now we are seeing prophecy being fulfilled before our very eyes.
  • Christ is currently ‘visiting the Gentiles to take out of them a people for His name.’ Acts 15:14
  • Christ is gathering His people into one great body, the church. Our role is to be a pure bride for Christ, ready to be presented to Him at His second coming.
  • Look what Paul writes in 2 Cor 11:2 “I am jealous for you with godly jealousy. For I have betrothed you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ.”
  • We, the church, are the bridegroom of Christ.  This is on display in Revel 19:6-9
  • Then I heard something like the voice of a great multitude and like the sound of many waters and like the sound of mighty peals of thunder, saying,
  • “Hallelujah! For the Lord our God, the Almighty, reigns.
  • 7 Let us rejoice and be glad and give the glory to Him, for the marriage of the Lamb has come and His [a]bride has made herself ready.” 8 It was given to her to clothe herself in fine linen, bright and clean; for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the [b]saints.
  • 9 Then he *said to me, “Write, ‘Blessed are those who are invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb.’” And he *said to me, “These are true words of God.”
  • This is the wedding of the Lamb and His Church
  • Harry was finally a groom and was very excited about his upcoming marriage.  He was on his way out of the office when his boss came over to him with an outstretched hand, “congratulations Harry, I just wanted to tell you I’ve been married for twenty two years, and I am sure that you will always remember this day with the fondest of memories, as the happiest day of your life.” “But sir”, said Harry, “a little bit confused, I’m not getting married until tomorrow!”   “Yeah,  I know”, said his boss.
  • In OT history ever wedding had 3 vital elements.
  • The bridal price- In that day parents arranged weddings. They would get together and agree by contract to have their children marry each other, most times before they’d even met.
  • To seal the contract the husband to be or his father had to pay a price to the bride’s family. This was done in case the husband to be died or deserted her so that she would be financially secure.
  • Once this was paid, it was recognized by law and could only be terminated by divorce. Even before the wedding ever happened.
  • What does that mean for us? When Christ died on the cross the price He paid with His own blood was a legal payment for His marriage to the Church.
  • Paul uses this imagery all over his writings. In his farewell speech to the Ephesian elders Paul says ‘shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood.’
  • By the way this was the most dowry ever paid for a bride. This guarantees our security and that nothing can separate us from the love of Christ.
  • Next, is the betrothal.
  • This was a ceremony in which the bride and the bridegroom met in the presence of witnesses and gave gifts to each other.
  • This ceremony would likely look a little similar to us, but it took place a year or more before the wedding could be consummated.
  • After the ceremony both the bride and groom would return to their homes.
  • During this time the husband would rigorously prepare a place for his bride. This would usually mean building onto his father’s house, so that the bride would have a secure place to begin their lives together.
  • Joseph and Mary had done this before the angel Gabriel came to Mary to announce the birth of Christ.
  • This is the period we are in right now. Christ has given the Church gifts.
  • Now He has gone to prepare a place in His Father’s house.
  • This is the betrothal period. Today as we sit here.
  • The bridal price has been paid, the gifts have been given, the union is forever binding, but it awaits final consummation.
  • The Marriage Feast
  • The final part of marriage happens when the bridegroom and his friends go to the bride’s house for a marriage ceremony and a great feast. This is the event where Jesus changes water into wine at the wedding in Cana in John 2:1-11
  • As we read earlier in Revelation 19, this is the marriage supper of the Lamb and His bride. This will happen when Christ returns for His bride.
  • That’s God’s plan for the church and therefore He must return. It’s demanded by God. He will not lose His dowry paid for the church.
  1. The Corruption of the World Demands It
  • Christ is coming to judge the world.
  • Matt 16:27 says “The Son of Man will come in the glory of His Father with His angels, and then He will reward each according to his works.”
  • For believers this is the ‘blessed hope’ of the Church.
  • But for unbelievers this is immediate judgment.
  • John 5:25-29
  • This is final, complete, exhaustive judgment. It is a terrifying proposition for unbelievers.
  • Look how Paul describes it in 2 Thess 1:7-10
  • You don’t want to be there when this happens.
  1. The Future of Israel Demands It
  • God’s dealing with the church and the world both demand the return for Christ, but so does His dealings with Israel.
  • Zech 12:10 makes this promise “I will pour out on the house of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem, [a]the Spirit of grace and of supplication, so that they will look on Me whom they have pierced; and they will mourn for Him, as one mourns for an only son, and they will weep bitterly over Him like the bitter weeping over a firstborn.”
  • Romans 11:25-27 says this “For I do not want you, brethren, to be uninformed of this mystery—so that you will not be wise in your own estimation—that a partial hardening has happened to Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in; 26 and so all Israel will be saved; just as it is written,
  • “The Deliverer will come from Zion,
    He will remove ungodliness from Jacob.”
    27 “This is [a]My covenant with them,
    When I take away their sins.”
  • The key to understanding this teaching by Paul is found in the Olive tree.
  • The natural branches of the domestic olive tree failed to produce fruit, so God broke those branches off and grafted in branches from a wild olive tree. (that’s us)
  • Romans 11: 17 “But if some of the branches were broken off, and you, being a wild olive, were grafted in among them and became partaker with them of the [h]rich root of the olive tree,”
  • Even in the early church, Gentiles were converting more rapidly than Jews. So Paul reminds them in vs 17 that they were grafted onto the olive tree and enjoy the root and fatness of that tree.
  • But a time is coming when the natural branches will be grafted back into the olive tree.
  • Paul connects this with the return of Christ, the deliverer who will come out of Zion.
  • God is not done with Israel. Expand
  1. Conclusion

Winston Churchill planned his funeral before he died. His wishes called for a bugler, positioned high in the dome of Saint Paul’s to play the taps after the benediction. The taps were meant to represent that his physical life was over. But then came the most dramatic turn: as soon as the taps was finished, another bugler, placed on the other side of the great dome, played the notes of reveille—It’s time to get up. It’s time to get up. It’s time to get up in the morning. At the end of history, the last note will not be taps; it will be reveille.

It is well, with my soul,
It is well, with my soul,
It is well, it is well, with my soul.

And Lord, haste the day when my faith shall be sight,
The clouds be rolled back as a scroll;
The trump shall resound, and the Lord shall descend,
Even so, it is well with my soul.