One of Elim’s foundation truths is – “We believe in the personal, physical and visible return of the Lord Jesus Christ to reign in power and glory.”
One in every 25 verses in New Testament refer either to the rapture of the church or Christ’s coming to reign over the world.
Why am I preaching on it?
- We see many major global things happening around us – wars, refugees, natural weather issues, natural disasters, a pandemic, environmental movements, the acceptance of new values around sex and sexuality, increasing opposition to Christianity that preaches the Gospel. How can we get a take on how to understand what is happening, and also how we should live as Christians now? Understanding God’s future plan for the earth has to help us.
- A future perspective is a major part of Bible focus – absolutely in the NT but also throughout the OT as well. So, this future hope, of Jesus return to reign is a vital part of that. Hope is a vital part of our Christian lives. Let’s have a look at what it is.
- In the NT we see that the way we live as Christians, in holiness, full of His Spirit, serving God wholeheartedly is impacted by our understanding of the return of Jesus Christ. You want to live correctly as a Christian – you will be doing that for a returning King.
- If you look on social media – there is a plethora of teaching on end times and also a plethora of prophecies concerning the end times. I am not intentionally adding to that, but providing teaching as pastor of this church to help you get a basic understanding, in order to be able to live your lives for Jesus.
I am not going to be making predictions about when Jesus’ return will be or interpret specific current events to pronounce that Jesus’ return is going to happen within a certain timespan. I’m not going to definitively state a timing for the rapture of the church (pre, mid, post tribulation). Not everyone will agree with everything I say, but if you believe the Bible, you will agree with most of it!!
But – it isn’t about knowledge per se – it is about growing in grace and knowledge of our Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ and living lives that are honouring to Him. So, we need to understand, be challenged, grow and bear fruit. Good soil!!
My plan is to base the series on Matthew chapters 24 and 24 – so can you read these a few times. I think this is Jesus most extensive discourse on His return (along with Mark 13 and Luke 21) – and so if Jesus said it, it will help us to get a good focus.
In Matt 24, We shall see that Jesus absolutely tells us He will return again to reign in power and glory, he tells us that before that happens there will be terrible things happening in the world, that Christians will be persecuted but the Gospel will be preached to all the world, false Messiahs will come but there will be no mistake when Jesus comes – every eye will see Him, Christians should be looking out for signs of His return but we don’t know when it will be – but we should be ready as there is a lot at stake.
Matt 25 – gives 2 parables and account which clearly point out how we should live in the light of His return – about being ready, about being faithful with what He has given us, and about living out the faith in mercy to others.