LAWTON CHURCH OF GOD, LAWTON OKLAHOMA

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Lesson 10 The Second Coming of Christ

 

 

Devotional Reading:   John 14:1–6

 

Memory Verse:           Acts 1:11

 

Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.

 

LESSON TEXT

 

Matthew 25:31–33. When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory: 32And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats: 33And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left.

 

Acts 1:9–11. And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight. 10And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel; 11Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.

 

1 Thessalonians 4:13–18. But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. 14For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. 15For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. 16For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: 17Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. 18Wherefore comfort one another with these words.

 

COMMENTS ON THE LESSON TEXT

 

Matthew 25:31. Christ is to return in glory accompanied by all the angels. Vv 32, 33. The general judgment then will take place. All people of all nations will be assigned their final awards.

Acts 1:9. The ascension was visible. Christ went up bodily and a cloud received him. Vv 10, 11. Two angels appeared who promised a literal return of the same Christ in the same manner. The return shall be visible.

1 Thessalonians 4:13. A knowledge of the state and future of the dead is a source of comfort to us who live. V14. The return of Christ is made as certain as his death and resurrection. The dead in Christ shall likewise be brought back. V15. The coming of the Lord is to occur at a definite time: some will be alive and others dead. The living shall not prevent (precede) the dead, but all shall meet him together. V16. Christ will come personally, with great demonstration. At that time the resurrection will occur. The dead in Christ will be raised first—not before the wicked but before the events next described. V17. The righteous, both dead and living shall meet the Lord in the clouds. This will be the final meeting.

 

LESSON TOPIC: THE SECOND COMING OF CHRIST.

 

I. THE RETURN OF CHRIST

 

1. The return denied.

 

A) By scoffers. Peter so declared (2 Peter 3:3, 4). These disbelieve the Bible and make light of the idea of a personal return of Christ. B) By some who misunderstand. Some earnest Christians think Christ fulfilled his promise on Pentecost in the person of the Holy Spirit. Some texts have some such fulfillment (see John 14:23) but these cannot disprove the fact of a personal return which the apostles continued to teach.

 

2. Promises of a return.

 

A) Christ’s promises. Jesus promised to come again for his people (John 14:3). He shall be seen coming in the clouds in great glory (Matthew 24:30; 25:31; 26:64). Several of Christ’s parables clearly teach his return. B) The promise of the angels (Acts 1:11). Here is a distinct promise that could not be stated more clearly. The promise of his return was to relieve the sorrow occasioned by his departure. The same Jesus is to return in the same manner. C) The hope of the church. The apostles continued to teach that Christ would return, and this hope was deeply planted in the church (1 John 3:3). Every New Testament writer speaks of the return of Christ. What doctrine is more Scriptural than this? The New Testament ends with the promise, “Surely I come quickly.”

 

3. The manner of his coming.

 

A) A personal return. Christ is coming in person. His promise it, “I will come again.” The angel said, “This same Jesus” shall return. Paul declares, “The Lord himself shall descend.” It would be difficult to understand such statements in any way other than that Christ will return personally. A change in the spirit of the times, or some impersonal presence, can never fulfill these promises. B) The return will be perceptible. Several texts declare that he shall be seen when he comes. Indeed, every eye shall see him (Revelation 1:7). There shall also be clouds and a great host of angels. His coming will be visible. Then there shall be the great shout and sound of a trumpet, even waking the dead. His coming shall be audible.

 

4. The time of his coming.

 

A) The date is unknown. Christ declared that no one but the Father knows the day and hour. There is no prophecy by which the exact date can be determined. Efforts to set the date have failed. Some spiritual people may sense the nearness of the Lord before he comes, but we have no reason to think the date will be revealed. B) It will be at a time unexpected (1 Thessalonians 5:2; 2 Peter 3:10). The mass of men will be thinking of other things like in the days of Noah and of Lot. But to the Christians it will not be so much of a surprise. C) It will be at the end of time. The conclusion of this earth’s history must come with it (1 Corinthians 15:24). The events connected with the coming are conclusive proof of this.

 

5. Signs of his coming.

 

A) When asked for signs of his coming Jesus answered mostly with warnings to be ready. This is most important. B) The apostasy and restoration must come first. This is clearly indicated by Paul and others. The apostasy is a matter of history, and the restoration is upon us. These are being fulfilled. C) Christ promised the universal preaching of the gospel before the end. This is being fulfilled rapidly now. No one can tell just how thoroughly the gospel must be preached nor how long it will take.

 

III. THERE WILL BE BUT ON FUTURE COMING OF CHRIST

 

1. The idea of two future comings.

 

Connected with the premillennial theory is the idea of two returns of Christ in the future.

 

2. Two comings not required.

 

It is illogical to make two returns if the events described can be reconciled in one coming. Other Greek terms are also used in telling of his return.

 

3. The facts disprove two comings.

 

A) The saints will come with Christ at the first one (1 Thessalonians 3:13). B) The events that will occur at his coming will fully disprove the theory of two separate comings in the future.

 

III. EVENTS AT THE COMING OF CHRIST

 

1. The resurrection.

 

A) Christ will come in the clouds. (Acts 1:11; Revelation 1:7) with great glory (Matthew 24:30) with his holy angels (Matthew 25:31) with the sound of the trump and the shout (1 Thessalonians 4:16). Then will occur the resurrection of the righteous (1 Corinthians 15:23). This chain of texts proves that all these events will happen simultaneously. B) This resurrection of the righteous will occur first, not before the resurrection of the wicked, but before the meeting in the air. C) The wicked will be resurrected for they shall see him coming (Revelation 1:7; Matthew 26:64). For “every eye,” “they also which pierced him,” and the wicked high priest, to see Jesus they must be resurrected. D) Both classes are included in the one resurrection (Daniel 12:2; John 5:28, 29).

 

2. The judgment.

 

This will follow immediately (Matthew 25:31, 32). When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory: 32And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats.

 

3. The end of the kingdom.

 

1 Corinthians 25:22, 23. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive. 23But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ’s at his coming. 24Then cometh the end, when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father; when he shall have put down all rule and all authority and power.

 

4. The end of the world.

 

2 Peter 3:10. But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up. (Verse 11 says that ALL THINGS shall be dissolved.)