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?

The Application of Eschatology?

Is there an Application for Revelation and Biblical Eschatology?

Revelation, as most evangelicals understand it, is about the last days and the judgment of evil, and, for the most part it is. “However,” (a BIG “however,” and a “however” most of us do not like to hear and will rarely study or teach on); Revelation is also about how we are called to lead faithful lives and manage HIS CHURCH! Among the questions we need to ask ourselves are, are we being a “harlot” with His Church? Consider that prostitution is a form of adultery—not just in the sexual sense, but being disloyal to God so we are committing adultery against Him. It is unfaithfulness, and thus corruption and disintegration of our life, faith, and then the family because of the breakdown of the Church resulting in the breakdown of society (Is. 57:3; Jer. 3:8-9; Hos. 2:4; Rev. chaps 1-3; 17:1-5). This is about who you pledge your life to. Is it to your own pride? Or, is it to His Church and the glorification of Christ? Or, do you chase bad trends, sin, and the ways of the world? Are you so concerned with your way of doing things that His Way is pushed aside or skewed? How do you lead your personal life or church? Perhaps you are the “harlot,” or at least acting like it. Consider the struggles of these seven churches and the struggles in your life and church. You may have some prayer and repenting to do! I know I have had to do so, and I will continue to do so!

Remember, if we feed our faith, our doubts and problems will start to starve. If we feed our doubts with sensationalisms and lust, all we will do is distort ourselves from our spiritual formation and in turn, glorify Satan and not Christ!

Real, effectual Eschatology has more to do with spiritual loyalty than about what happens in the future. This makes the question that we all need to ask is to whom and to what are we loyal? Is it fads, trends, and ideas, or is it the precepts of Scripture and the glorification of Christ? Why are Christians so interested in chasing fads? Did you know every theory and prediction of Christ’s return and the patterns of the day leading to His return all have all been wrong?

Some notable Rapture and End Time predictions include the following (From Wikipedia and CRI equip.org):

You can call this, the people of the oops!

· 1792 – Shakers calculated this date

· 1844 – William Miller, founder of the Millerites, predicted the return of Christ would occur on October 22, 1844, revised after an initial prediction for the 1843/1844 Hebrew Year. The failure of Jesus to appear on this date after his followers had sold all their possessions was referred to as The Great Disappointment.

· June 21, 1981- Maupin, a pastor in Tucson, Arizona, wrote a book predicting the date of the Second Coming. His congregation sold all their belongings and went to a hilltop on that day to await the event.

· 1981 – Chuck Smith un-dogmatically predicted that Jesus would likely return by 1981.

· 1982Pat Robertson predicted a few years in advance that the world would end in the fall of 1982.

· 1988 – Publication of 88 Reasons why the Rapture is in 1988, by Edgar C. Whisenant.

· 1988 Hal Lindsey had predicted, in his book “The Late, Great Planet Earth,” that the Rapture was coming in 1988

· 1989 – Publication of The Final Shout: Rapture report 1989, by Edgar Whisenant. More predictions by this author appeared for 1992, 1995, and other years.

· 1992 – Korean group “Mission for the Coming Days” predicted October 28, 1992 as the date for the rapture.

· 1993 – Seven years before the year 2000. The rapture would have to start to allow for seven years of the Tribulation before the Return in 2000. Multiple predictions.

· 1994 – Pastor John Hinkle of Christ Church in Los Angeles predicted June 9, 1994.

· 1994 – Radio evangelist Harold Camping predicted September 27, 1994.

· 1997 – Stan Johnson of the Prophecy Club predicted September 12, 1997.

· 1998 – Marilyn Agee, in The End of the Age, predicted May 31, 1998.

· 1999- Jerry Falwell predicted that the Second Coming would probably be within 10 years

· 1999- Nostradamus predicted that “from the sky will come a great King of Terror” (a lot of Christians were using his writings as proof for a 1999 or 2000 year return of Christ.)

· 2000- Michael Drosnin, author of “The Bible Code,” found a hidden message in the Pentateuch (the first five books in the Bible) that predicts that World War III, involving a worldwide atomic holocaust, will start in 2000 or perhaps 2006.

· 2007- September 13, 2007- Paul Sides predicted that Christ would return, (He is very popular on the internet.)

· 2007- Hal Lindsey (he says currently no longer makes specific predictions about the end of the world). In his revised book The Late Great Planet Earth he did predict the battle of Armageddon in 2000 and the second coming of Christ in 2007

These do not include the countless ones from the TV preacher crowd, cultists, the nuts, and Y2K for the year 2000…

oops….