Christ will Certainty Return PI

Christ will ReturnUnexpectedly! 2 Peter 3:10-13 

“But the day of the Lord will come like a thief. The heavens will disappear with a roar; the elements will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and everything done in it will be laid bare.” 2 Peter 3: 10

What preparation and participation do you think we are to do? What happens when people do nothing with their faith and just wait for a future that may not come?

Peter, in graphic imagery and hopefulness, is making a strong argument that Christ will return and when He does, it will be un-expected with un-surpassing wonders the world has never seen.

During this time, these early Christians were being discouraged by the persecutions and seemingly insurmountable sufferings and loss. The comfort of Jesus’ returning was like cool water to a person dying of thirst on a hot day. Consequently, false teachers were taking advantage of them. These so-called pious fraud Christians, who were making their own apocalyptic predictions, with bad motivations. They operated just like Satan, seeking to disrupt, seduce, and carry people away from Christ and to their way. If you are not sure who they are, watch their character and Fruit, which will show their true nature (Jer. 23:13; Micah 3:5; Matt. 7:15; Acts 20:28-30; 2 Cor. 11:13-15; Eph. 4:14; Phil. 3:2; 2 Tim. 3:4-6; Titus 1:11, 12; 2 Peter 2:18-19).

What is this all about? This is the climax of the Kingdom of God, the time when it comes into its fulfillment and fruition. The earth and all we know and see will be re-formed as a new earth and a new life. There will be a judgment from which nothing will be exempt.

What does this mean for me? Because all will be judged and “destroyed” (meaning renewed), we must make the most of our lives here and now, not wait for a future that may not come, or bask in the past. We must live for Christ with the hope and purpose He gives us with power, passion, and conviction.

The promise of His Second Coming is to give us hope and confidence. 

We live in a sin-infested world now, but the one to come will be perfect, as all in it will be right with God. We look forward to His Second Coming and the fruition of his Kingdom. But, beware of sitting and doing nothing; we will delay His work and impede the preparation of His Kingdom. Our participation helps His coming, as we help build His Kingdom now.

This passage is also very figurative. The purpose of figurative or apocalyptic language is to describe the indescribable. 

Peter attempts to help us understand these events and the importance of our being ready (Matt. 24: 36 through chapter 25 is also written this way for this reason). This is about being hopeful for the future, but living and being viable in the present.

We can take comfort in the fact that Jesus is coming back. 

This time it will not be a subtle event, as a baby born in a feed trough in a cave. Rather, the entire creation will glow and bend to show the whole world His glory. This passage gives hope to a persecuted church, hope to people in despair, and hope that He is indeed in charge, even when we cannot see it!

What does it mean that we are to live our lives as if Christ would be coming tomorrow and also preparing and planning as if He were coming a thousand years from now? Is this a contradiction, or a plan to do?

How can the Second Coming give you hope and confidence? How does this passage give hope to a persecuted church?

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Exegetical look at Matthew 24, Part II

Vs.6-14: Are not troubled. Suffering is a part of life; it will happen; we have to learn to cope, seek Him, and prepare for it so we can help others and ourselves through it.

· Sorrows literally means, “the spasms from giving birth;” troubles are like being pregnant, with the possibility that the birth will give us both opportunity and pain.

· We are called not to be discouraged when bad things, troubles, disasters, and tribulations happen in the world (2 Chron. 15:6; Isa. 13:8; 19:2; Jer. 51:46; Hos. 13:13). We live in a fallen world where sin has corrupted everything and everyone, so disasters will come. We are called to prepare, plan ahead, and look to Christ as the Deliverer. He is in control!

· They will deliver you was a forewarning that knowing and making Christ known is dangerous; we will face persecution both overtly and/or covertly.

· Persecution was what distinguished the early church from other groups, even many zealous ones who were not persecuted.

· Tribulation means “The Day of the Lord” which will come about in the last days. (This term has been wrought with controversy in the last 100 years. I, for time sake, will not explore all the theories; however we will when we get further in the book of Revelation).

· He who endures. This is also a call, a call to keep you from being spiritually or emotionally defeated when tough times come. We are to always see our Lord and not our situation (John 10:28-29; Rom. 8:31-39). This is an aspect of the character of faithfulness, as it will help you persevere under stress and chaos. Christ keeps us secure, not our environment!

· Offended, betray. Under cultural, family, and physical pressure, many early Christians gave up on the faith; some betrayed others, and some reverted to paganism or Judaism.

· Deceive. This leads to and comes from Apostasy—a blatant disregard for God and His truth as well as the forsaking of His love and acceptance! Love cannot function where God is not honored, sought, and glorified! We cannot be deceived when our eyes are on Christ and His Word!