Get ready for Christ’s return – Part 1
But when one receives the gospel, he is transformed. Grace teaches, trains and transforms him to be righteous, sober and godly in this present world.
When grace comes to us, the past is forgotten, forgiven and changed, and the present is renewed. Grace prepares us for the future.
Many of the people who received the impartation of God’s grace never saw Christ physically.
Thus, they looked forward to seeing Him eventually in heaven. “Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ.”
The coming of the Lord had been prophesied in the Old Testament. Jesus Christ spoke about it. He said, “I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself.” (John 14:2,3).
He also spoke of the Great Tribulation – a period of unprecedented suffering on earth for sinners and backsliders, who will not go with the Lord at the rapture. Meanwhile, the marriage supper of the Lamb will be going on in heaven during the Great Tribulation.
After the Great Tribulation, Christ will come with the saints to reign on earth for one thousand years. Since the rapture will be unannounced, the Lord calls on all believers to get ready.
Those who are not born again and sanctified are not ready for His coming. No one can predict the date, time or year when the Lord will come. “Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.”
If there were no possibilities of anyone missing the rapture, there would have been no need for the warning or command to get ready.
To see the Lord when He comes, we must remain “pure in heart” (Matthew 5:8), maintain “clean hands, and… not (lift) up (our) soul unto vanity” (Psalm 24:4).
We should also declare the Word of God that saves from ruin and eternal judgment, and prepare people for the coming of the Lord, and for heaven.
Believers are not saved and transformed to remain here on earth forever. The purpose is to prepare them for the coming of the Lord. We need to get ready, desire and look for that blessed appearance of our Lord.
It is natural for a bride to desire strongly the return of her bridegroom, who had gone on a long journey. Jesus Christ, the Head of the Church is the Bridegroom.
The Church is the Bride waiting for the coming of the Bridegroom. In a family, the wife keeps herself pure while waiting for her husband and prepares in every way necessary for his return.
Christ is coming for the purchased, purified Bride. Although, we are here on earth, “our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ”. Sadly, not everyone looks forward to Christ’s return to take His people home.
Some are so busy with business and things of the world that they do not long for the coming of the Lord, even though they are religious. But “unto them that look for Him shall He appear the second time.”
The people that were saved in the Old Testament also looked forward to the glorious appearing of the Lord. When Christ comes, He will take us to heaven, a place “whose builder and maker is God.” This present world is corrupt, defiling and awaiting doom, destruction and damnation. Therefore, we should “look for new heavens… wherein dwelleth righteousness”.
This is only possible if we are diligent to be “found of him in peace (with God, man, family, members of the church and people in the community), without spot, and blameless”.
We should keep ourselves in the love of God so that, by His grace, when He comes, we would not be left behind. “But that which ye have already hold fast till I come”. As we long for Christ’s return, we should hold fast to our salvation, sanctification, conviction, doctrine, commitment and consecration.
Further Reading (King James Version): Titus 2:11-15; Matthew 24:21,22; Revelation 19:6-9; Matthew 24:29,30,42,44; 25:10-13; Mark 13:31-37; Luke 12:37,40; 21:34-36; Revelation 16:15; Titus 2:13; Philippians 3:20,21; Hebrews 9:26-28; 11:10,14-16; 2 Peter 3:11-14; Jude 21,24; Revelation 1:7,8; 2:25,26; 3:11,12; 16:15; 22:7,12,20; Genesis 19:16-18,26; Luke 17:28-30,32; 9:62; 12:45,46; Hebrews 10:38,39; 2 Peter 2:20-22; 2 John 8-11; Hebrews 12:14,15; Titus 2:13,14; 1 Thessalonians 1:7-10; Luke 19:10,13; 1 Kings 20:39,40; John 21:15-17,21; Acts 5:42; 16:4,5; 17:16,17; 19:9,10; 8:4.
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