The Missing Second Coming

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In the 1970’s I understand that there were plenty of churches that were very excited and taught a lot about the second coming of Christ.  In recent decades there has been a reaction to that possible over-emphasis and in my experience you will do very well to find an evangelical church teaching on the subject now.

One reason for this is that it is the source of much disagreement, and many church leaders want to focus on the things that unite rather than those that divide.  That might be well intentioned but the fact is that this is a subject that the Scriptures have much to say about.  Not only that, people are very interested in the subject.  Books such as the Left Behind series have sold enormous quantities, and even in the last 12 months there has been a rash of Christian books about near death experiences.  Again, they have done extremely well at the cash register.

It seems to me that if people are very interested in a subject that the bible has lots to say about the obvious response from diligent church leaders is to teach it!  There’s not much rocket science needed there.

What I realised a few years ago is that this collective failure to teach on the subject is causing people to go to whatever books are best sellers for their answers.  And most of what the best selling Christian books say is, in my opinion, miles off the mark.  Most of what is accepted by bible believing Christians as what happens during the End Times has been developed over the last 150 years, and has very little in common with what Christians such as Augustine, Luther and Calvin have believed.

I got that realisation when a few years ago my church did a question and answer time on the subject.  By presenting the standard views that have dominated Christian theology for the last 2,000 years (and rejecting the new fashioned theology of the Left Behind novels) I caused quite a stir!  I got a question about every wild and wacky theory that is out there.  If we would simply address the subject then our people would get teaching from their own pastors rather than going to dubious books, movies and novels.

So I am committing to writing half a dozen or so posts over the year about end times theology.  I’m going to tackle eternal rewards, Armageddon, the Anti-Christ, the Second Coming, the Millennium and what is for many people the most important question of all – what happens to you when you die.

But to give you a bit of a teaser let me say that if you are a Christian you will be encouraged by what I share.  Over this sort of time period we can look at the subject in a relaxed and thorough manner.  But once Jesus was faced with a dying man who did not have the time to listen to a presentation with charts, timelines, pictures and diagrams.  To the thief on the cross Jesus said, “I tell you the truth – today you will be with me in paradise.”  That one sentence is all that Jesus had time to say, and all that the man needed to hear.  So fear not – this is a series that will encourage you!

John

5 Responses to “The Missing Second Coming”

  1. Hey John Proverbs 29:18. We sure need a vision that is biblically based. 2 Peter 3:11-14 poses the real issue. What manner of peresons ought we to be ? Jesus is returning for His bride and He wont return untill she is ready. It is always the brides responsibility to prepares herself. It is time we put on our wedding robe the fine linen which is the righteous acts of us saints. Blessings beautiful brother.

  2. I would be glad to see some solid teaching circulate. I read a lot about this years ago, then I was able to join an ad hoc committee and we translated Revelation. How simple the book is in Greek, and clearly about enduring to the end, not a calculator to find the date of the end of the age. There’s a difference between “Be ready” (Biblical) and obsess about mathematics and calendars (deception). Be blessed as you follow Christ on this important message. I’m ready (for Christ to come and to read your articles)!

  3. John, I have been having this very discussion with myself over the last week, that it is a topic that should definitely be broached in our services. We need to be well informed on these matters. In particular, we need to be constantly checking our hearts and making sure we are ready. Forgiveness is a topic that The Lord has been showing me and I have been sharing it with others. One pastor who was holding unforgiveness towards his wife had an after life experience where Jesus told him his destination was hell, unless he forgave his wife. He was dead for 3 days and was resurrected at a Reinhard Bonnke crusade. Amazing stuff! I look forward to your series on the end times and ensuring that we are ready when Jesus will come like a theif in the night. Bless you and Cath. 🙂

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