Senior Pastor Duane Mabee's weekly Pastor's Pondering can be read here, as seen in the printed church bulletin weekly.
Does the Second Coming Excite You, Scare You, or Leave You Indifferent?by Duane Mabee on May 2, 2019
Does the thought of the return of Jesus Christ excite you, scare you, or leave you indifferent? Some people get very excited about studying the return of Christ and End Time prophecy. Others would rather have an extended dental visit.
I wonder, though, if most Christians today aren’t basically indifferent to the return of Christ. They may not say that out loud. Would you be brave enough to answer my question that way? The return of Christ, however, occupies little, if any, of their thoughts. They aren’t looking forward to it, nor do they dread it. They just don’t think about it.
The fact that Christ is returning, however, is meant to have several positive effects on us. It is supposed to encourage us. In 1 Thessalonians 4, Paul talks about what will happen at the return of Christ and in verse 18 writes, “Therefore encourage one another with these words.” Unfortunately, we only seem to focus on “these words” at a funeral. That’s too bad, because the fact that Christ is returning should encourage and strengthen us every day. We can face a lot if we keep in mind that Jesus is coming back to set everything right.
Christ’s return should also motivate us to complete the assignment He gave us to make disciples. In John 9:4, Jesus said that we only have a little while to complete our work. So, “we must work the works of Him who sent Me while it is day; night is coming, when no one can work”.
His return should also motivate us to seek greater purity in our lives. In discussing how Christ’s return will come “like a thief” and how all kinds of cataclysmic changes will take place in the universe, Peter says that we should be people who live “lives of holiness and godliness, waiting for and hastening the coming of the day of God,” (2 Pet. 3:10-11 ESV). Part of the reason for this is that we will be both evaluated (1 Cor. 3:10-15) and rewarded (2 Tim. 4:8).
Because we don’t know when Christ will return, it should motivate us to be ready at any time. “Therefore, you also must be ready, for the son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect,” (Matt. 24:44 ESV). Some of Jesus’ parables also describe the need to be ready and actively doing what we are supposed to be doing when He returns.
While we shouldn’t fixate on the return of Christ – especially on trying to determine the timing and sequence of all the events – we should focus on it. It should encourage, strengthen, and motivate us. We should adjust our attitudes and activities based on the fact that Christ is coming again. What we do between now and His return will shape the experience of eternity for us and those we impact.