Since the time that Jesus ascended into heaven, there have been people who have predicted the month, year, or even the day that He will return. But no knows when Jesus will come again. Jesus himself said,
“But concerning that day or that hour, no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. Be on guard, keep awake. For you do not know when the time will come. It is like a man going on a journey, when he leaves home and puts his servants in charge, each with his work, and commands the doorkeeper to stay awake. Therefore stay awake—for you do not know when the master of the house will come, in the evening, or at midnight, or when the rooster crows, or in the morning—lest he come suddenly and find you asleep. And what I say to you I say to all: Stay awake.” (Mark 13:32-27)
Because of this, we use the word imminent to describe the return of Christ. Imminent means it is close at hand, near, it could happen at any moment. This immanency is taught using the imagery of a thief who breaks into a house at night. For you yourselves are fully aware that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night. (1 Thess. 5:2)
Though not one of us knows when the Lord will return, we do know that He will come again. This should produce within us a certain amount of anticipation, a longing for Jesus to come again. But it should also produce decisive actions that become part of our lifestyle. Take a moment to read Revelation chapter 22.
The promised return of Jesus is imminent and should, therefore, compel you to be prepared. To do so, you need to act out your faith in four ways.
- Refocus on the eternal presence and glory of God (Rev. 22:1-5).
- Resolve to trust and keep the Word of God (Rev. 22:6-10).
- Rest in Christ alone as your righteousness (Rev. 22:11-15).
- Respond to God’s saving grace in Jesus Christ (Rev. 22:16-21).
The Lord’s promised return feeds hope into our hearts. It encourages us to continue to fight hard at putting sin to death, as we do not want to be ashamed at His coming (1 John 2:28), and long for the day I will be like Him, pure as He is pure (1 John 3:2-3). It helps us to persevere in our suffering, both bodily suffering and spiritual suffering at the hands of God’s enemies. Our present suffering is not worthy to be compared to the glory that is coming (Rom. 8:18). One day soon, Revelation 21:3 will be our living reality: And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God.”
He who testifies to these things says, “Surely I am coming soon.” Amen. Come, Lord Jesus! The grace of the Lord Jesus be with all. Amen.