Here’s what you will learn:
1. How do we know Jesus will return?
2. What are the “signs of the times”?
3. What did Christ mean when he told us to pray, “Your Kingdom come”?
4. What is God’s plan for the earth?
Wouldn’t it be wonderful? Jesus Christ back on the earth. He would heal us, help us, lead us—all the things that our human leaders cannot do. Most Christian churches are supposed to teach it, but we, the Christadelphians, actually believe it. In fact, if you read the Bible for yourself you must come to the same conclusion.
JESUS CHRIST IS COMING BACK.
We are sure that the Bible says he will come back to this wicked earth, and change it into something much, much better.
The Old Testament prepared people for the first coming of Christ—it told them where he would be born, what he would come to do, and how he would die. The New Testament tells us, similarly, many details about his second coming—what the world will be like, what he will come to do, and the power that will be his when he sets up his Kingdom. In fact, the Bible isn’t two separate books, the Old Testament and the New Testament. It is one whole book. It has one continuous message:
“Jesus Christ is coming back.”
Way back in Genesis chapters 12 to 25 we are told that God chose one man out of all the others, and promised that the whole world would be blessed through him. The man’s name was Abraham and this promise was then repeated to his son Isaac, and grandson Jacob—who was also named Israel. Very soon this one family of twelve tribes grew into a great nation, and God repeated the same promises to other members of the same family several times.
Mary, the mother of Jesus, came from this family and by the time Jesus was born into the nation of Israel very many people were looking for a Saviour and a King. They all knew the promises and
were expecting someone great and strong to chase away the Romans, who had conquered them, and to be their king. Here are some of the Promises God made to Israel:
· They would inherit the land of Israel for ever. (Genesis 13:15)
· King David’s house and kingdom would be established for ever. (2 Samuel 7:16)
· “In those days Judah will be saved, and Jerusalem will dwell safely.” (Jeremiah 33:16)
When Jesus was 30 years old he was revealed to the people of Israel as the Son of God. Many really believed that he had come to be their Saviour and King, but most leaders did not accept him. They did not know, or they would not accept, what God had promised to Mary, or what angels had told the shepherds. Most of the leaders did not believe in his miracles of healing, or in his powerful words. Within three and a half years they had persuaded the Roman rulers to kill him. Even the disciples forsook him and fled.
But Jesus didn’t stay dead! God brought him out of the tomb and gave him a completely new life. Never again would he die—now Christ is immortal. He said of himself: “All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.” This now sounded like a Saviour and King!
This was only the beginning!
Jesus was not seen by anyone who did not believe in him. Gone was their chance to question and attack him. Only the disciples or followers saw him and talked to him. And 40 days after his resurrection he ascended to heaven, leaving a promise behind him—one of the greatest promises ever made.
“This same Jesus, who has beentaken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen him go into heaven.” (Acts 1:11)
That has not happened yet. But surely you can see from the summary of God’s plan we have already looked at, that Jesus Christ will keep the promises and return to earth.
Now we shall look at a few more passages of Scripture to give a clearer picture:
1. God said that all nations of the earth would be blessed in Abraham’s family. (Genesis 12:3)
2. The King of the world would be descended from King David. (Luke 1:32)
3. This King would die but would not remain dead. (Psalm 16:8-11)
4. At the return of God’s Son the desert will blossom and human sickness will be cured. (Isaiah 35)
5. The world will be governed by God’s Son, from Jerusalem. (Isaiah 2:2-5)
It therefore seems obvious that God’s plan right from the beginning was to send His Son as a saviour and a King. Jesus’ birth and life on this earth were to enable people to understand him, and for us to appreciate what he will do when he comes again.
WHAT IS JESUS DOING NOW?
Jesus is in heaven, at God’s right hand, preparing his kingdom. That’s why he told us to pray, “Your kingdom come”. Soon it will! Jesus will return from heaven and set up God’s kingdom on earth. He will raise the dead, purify the world, and reign on David’s throne, from Jerusalem.
God has not given a date for all of this to happen, but He has given some signs to show us when to expect him. Below are just a few of the prophecies of the Bible where the return of Jesus is mentioned.
1. The Jewish nation will return to their homeland. (Jeremiah 23:5-8) —This has been happening in our lifetimes!
2. World-wide problems will be veryclear to everyone. (Luke 21:25-27) —This is more true now than ever before.
3. Many nations of the world will threaten and attack Israel. (Zechariah 14:1-11) —We should watch for this to happen soon.
It is becoming more and more clear that the scene is being set for the return of Jesus to this earth. We don’t know for certain when he is coming back, but we can surely see what is happening in the world around us. The prophecies are coming true. The Jews have even been allowed to leave Russia (see Jeremiah 23:8). This is a very recent addition to a long list of prophecies which have been fulfilled.