Looking For That Blessed Hope Titus 2:13 CLICK TITLE FOR AUDIO
People still ask, “Do you think the Lord is coming soon?” My standard reply is that Bible believers in every generation have seen enough evidence in their lifetimes to believe that the Lord was going to return during their lives. I certainly think we are close to his return. But even if he doesn’t return during our lifetime, look for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ. When you are looking for that blessed hope you are:
Looking up – 1 Thes 4:16 – too many people today are looking down or they are looking around or they are looking inwardly but they aren’t looking up. The Lord will descend from heaven. So, look up. Quit being so self-centered, so worldly, so depressed. Sure, there are things down here that depress you and discourage you. But we above all people have HOPE. And our hope is coming soon. Don’t throw in the towel.
Thinking about him – Matt 24:44 – I realize this verse deals with the second advent. However, it is a good verse in that it shows that Jesus comes at a time when men are not thinking about him. They are buying and selling, marrying and giving in marriage and planting and building [Lk 17:26-30]. They are just going on with business as usual. We, on the other hand, ought to be thinking about Jesus. We ought to be waking up with anticipation and going to sleep listening for the shout.
Looking for Him – you’re not looking for the antichrist, 2 Thes 2:3. Many Christians spend their time trying to figure out who the antichrist is. You will not know until he is revealed. Until then you can only speculate. Don’t look for the loser, keep your eye on the winner.
Occupying till he comes – Lk 19:13 – the Lord left us here to work for him. And so you and I have a job to do. And we are not done until the trumpet blows. There is much work yet to do. Souls on mission fields still need missionaries. Cities in the US that still need good Bible believing churches [particularly out west]. There are souls still to win. We are still training young men and women. A teacher in the eighth grade asked us what we would do if we heard that the Lord was going to return tomorrow. We each had a list of changes we would make and tasks we would complete. Yet, one student said, “I wouldn’t do anything differently; I’m doing now what I should be doing if he were to return today.”
Preparing for his judgment – 1 Cor 3:11-15 – the first thing we will do after Jesus returns is go through the judgment seat of Christ. We must give account of ourselves to God. People do so many things today in the name of the Lord and yet they are just wood, hay and stubble. This problem with these folks is similar to the problem with the folks in Matt 7:21-23. Men do wonderful works in the name of the Lord but the Lord doesn’t have anything to do with them. You need to be absolutely sure that the work you are doing for the Lord today will stand up to the judgment of Jesus. Paul was sure [2 Tim 4:7] .
Conclusion: It is fine to ask, “Do you think the Lord is going to return in my lifetime?” However, you need to do more than satisfy your curiosity about people’s answers. You need to live like you believe he will be here any minute now!