Seven-Fold Purpose Of Christ’s Second Coming
My text is found in Romans 12:12, where the Word of God reads as follows: “Rejoicing in hope.”
Some dear folks say we have no commandments for the church. We have New Testament commandments, any number of them, even in Romans 12. This is one of them: “Rejoice in hope.” The Lord does not say, “Rejoice in faith; rejoice in peace; rejoice in love.” But He does say, “Rejoice in hope.” Hope is a thing that can thrill our hearts as nothing else can do. Hope is pointing us not to a good thing in the future, but to a good Person. The New Testament hope has to do with the blessed coming of our “great God and Saviour, Jesus Christ.”
I wish to unfold to you certain reasons for rejoicing in hope as I speak to you on this seven-fold purpose of the Lord’s coming. You know the modernists say, “Why should Jesus come again? We can do without Him.” Some time ago I heard that statement—“we can do without Him.” Man, by the law of development, has advanced so far that he can do things without the Lord Jesus Christ, and everything is progressing. In the face of the horrors of the last eight years, in the face of all the blood and tears that have been shed, we have hundreds of men in the pulpit who are preaching yet to the people the awful stupidity that the world is getting better. And they will say, “Why should the Lord come again?” The mockers of the last days are upon us. They are right in our midst. I wish to give a seven-fold answer to that question: Why, wherefore should the Lord come again? May the Lord help us!
For His Own Sake
The Lord Jesus, beloved, will come again for His own sake. That is perhaps the primary reason why He will come again. That is a reason which is often forgotten by the dear people who are looking and longing for Him in the darkness. He is coming again for His own sake. The King, in the parable, prepared a feast for his son. God prepares the marriage supper for the Lamb—not for the bride, for the Lamb, our blessed Saviour. He is waiting above. He is not idle while He is waiting, but He is in the meanwhile praying for us. This very moment the Lord Jesus is praying for us that our faith may be kept up. At this very moment He is working for us. He is preparing places for us. But He is at the same time waiting, beloved, the angels of God are waiting, the Bride is waiting and the Spirit is waiting and praying with the Bride, saying, “Come.” But He also is waiting, waiting with longing, like the bridegroom is longing for the bride. Thus in a celestial sense our blessed Saviour is waiting for the day when He shall be united with His bride. Jude says in his first verse that we are “in the Father and we are kept for the Lord Jesus.” The English version reads “through the Lord Jesus,” but in the original it says, “we are kept for the Lord Jesus.” We are kept through Him, that is true, for “no one shall pluck them out of my hand”; but we are also kept forHim, as the bride is kept for her bridegroom, thus the church is kept for the Lord Jesus in order to glorify His name in the glorious “day of the Lord.” So He is coming again for Himself. It will be His highest joy to be united with the church. As the first Adam rejoiced over Eve, thus the second Adam shall rejoice in the church. When we shall come to the unity of faith in the Son of God we shall be the “one perfect man”: Christ the head and the church the body. Let us not forget when we are praying for the Lord’s coming and say, “Come, Lord Jesus, yea, come quickly,” that we are praying for Him, that His joy may be fulfilled and that He may set upon the throne of His glory and rule as King of kings and Lord of lords.
When He comes He shall defend His own honor against His enemies—all the liberalists who deny His precious blood.
To Fulfill Prophecy
The Old Testament is not yet fulfilled. It is one of the most ignorant, if not the most wicked doctrines, to teach that the New Testament is the complete fulfillment of the Old. That is really an awful doctrine because almost half of our precious Bible is as yet unfulfilled. Even the great promise that Satan’s head should be bruised is unfulfilled, and that “all the families of the earth shall be blessed in Abraham” is still unfulfilled, and scores of others. The Patriarchs had been longing for the day of the Messiah. Abraham saw His day and was glad. Enoch, even before the flood, prophesied of His glorious coming with His church, and Jacob prophesied of the Shiloh—the rest-bringer, the peace-bringer—that the nations shall be subject to the One that brings peace and rest to the whole creation of God. The psalmist sings of joy and peace and glorious power at the coming of the Messiah. David in his swan song (2 Samuel 23:1–7) looked for the day in which the Lord Jesus Christ would destroy the children of wickedness and put down all rebellion, all Bolshevism, all infidelity. Ninety Psalms of the one hundred and fifty are speaking of the glad coming of Christ. And the Prophets? Any student of the Bible knows that the Prophets are filled with the prophecies concerning Jesus Christ and Israel and the nations. I make bold in affirming that the coming of the Lord is in almost every chapter of Isaiah—in practically every one of the sixty-six chapters. Even in the 53rd we have not only the cross, but the crown, the exaltation of our blessed Saviour. Now He comes again, beloved, to fulfill all His promises for His people Israel, the church and the nations, and at the same time He will vindicated His Word, now so much denied.
On the last page of the Bible we read that all those that take away from His Word shall have their names taken from the Book of Life. And then he says, “Behold I come quickly.” The Lord comes again in behalf of His Word. He loves His Word. He thinks everything of it. His Word is His own. He inspired it through His Spirit. He said, “In the scroll of the book is written of Me.” And when He comes He shall vindicate every jot and tittle of it and he shall put to shame the ungodly who have denied His precious Word.
For His Church
Next to His Word, there is nothing so close to the heart of our blessed Saviour as the church. He is the head of the church. The church is His body. It has the same blood, the same life that is in the head. The church has not the same divine life, but the same mediatorial life as the blessed Saviour Himself. He said even in His high priestly prayer, “Father, I will that they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me that they may behold my glory.” He wants His bride to be with Him in order to behold His glory and rejoice with Him. You know what Paul says to the church at Corinth, “I tell you a mystery (a divine secret) we shall not all die, but we shall all be changed in the twinkling of an eye.” He says to the church at Thessalonica: You know Christ has died and risen again; He shall come again and He shall bring His departed ones with Him. Study 1 Thessalonians 4:13–18. How shall He do it? He first comes for them. He finally says, “Comfort one another with these words.” When you stand by the open grave, when you are in great sorrow let this be your comfort. Say to the bereaved ones that the departed saints are coming back. There is nothing that can so comfort the sad and the sorrowing hearts like knowing that He is coming back, and they are coming back. When? When He comes back. How shall they come? Not in humiliation, not with their vile bodies of humiliation, but with strong bodies, incorruptible bodies, with glorious bodies, with spiritual bodies, bodies that are ruled completely and swayed forever by the Spirit of God. Thus they shall come with Him.
Even Zachariah saw it and he leaped for joy when he exclaimed, “The Lord my God shall come, and all his saints with thee.” Beloved, He is coming for His church. What a comfort! What a comfort it was to me in the days of my illness, when my body was so weak and racked with excruciating pain to know that the day will come when the Lord will change our humiliated bodies and fashion them like unto His own glorious body—like His own body! How is His body? Look at the first chapter of Revelation and you see a picture of the glorious Christ. He was so sublimely beautiful, so overwhelming, that John, though he was His bosom friend, fell like a dead man at His feet when He saw Him “in the glory,” and “we shall see Him as He is.” This is the hope of the church. Blessed by the Lord for that hope!
It is purifying. “Every one that hath this hope purifieth himself even as he is pure.” Now that word “purify” is very precious to me. The original has two words, two Greek words “without” and “earth.” It literally means to take the world out of you. “He that hath this hope in him taketh the world out of his heart and life.” This hope makes you unworldly in the sense that you cannot be conformed to the things of the world, nor be influenced by the world in your thinking, your heart, your feelings, your love. This hope gives you more love—for the Christian, for the Book, for Israel, for missions and, above all, for the Lord Himself. It is also a penetrating hope, a pacifying hope, a patience—working hope!
Israel is His nation, beloved, altogether unique. There is no other nation like it under the sun. There are about 16,000,000 Jews according to the last census, and in those 16,000,000 Jews you have 16,000,000 proofs for the truth of the Bible. Talk about proofs for the truth, the veracity, the historicity and authenticity of the Bible! You have 16,000,000 proofs in the Jews alone. The Jew is the standing miracle not only in the past ages but in the very day in which we live. He has been persecuted, buried alive and burned alive, but Israel is as the burning bush that cannot be consumed. He is a by-word and a hissing just as God has foretold. Now, God is greatly concerned over Israel, His first-born son among the nations. The nations may not be and the church may not be, but God is. His very heart throbs with love for Israel. Our blessed Saviour prayed on the cross for His murderers, saying, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.” And Paul agonized for Israel. He said, “I am willing to be made a curse, to be separated from Christ, if only my kinsmen according to the flesh might be saved.” There are some Christians that do not care for Israel. Let them know, let them realize that they are not like their Saviour, that they are not apostolic like Paul, that they are not like the Triune God, because God is greatly concerned about Israel—not because Israel is such a lovely nation, but they are the beloved for the Father’s sake. God has chosen them in His marvelous love and God’s calling and election are without repentance. The Jewish problem can never be solved but by Christ Himself. I say the problem of the Jews can never be solved by the nations, but only by Christ when He comes. He shall restore Israel. But before He restores Israel and before He shall save Israel, He shall judge Israel in the day of Jacob’s trouble—an awful day for Israel. Two parts of the three shall be crushed by His omnipotent hand, but those Jews that are saved represent the whole nation that is saved. Israel as a nation shall be saved. The Redeemer shall come out of Zion and shall turn the ungodliness from Jacob; what Jewish missions shall not be able to do (and God bless them everyone). They are doing what they can, but what they can never do, even if we had a million missions among the Jews, Jesus Christ will do in His own time. He shall come for His race—that is another purpose of His coming again.
To Judge The Nations
The nations of the world do not know what to do in these days. Their very hearts are failing them for fear. Their problems are increasing so rapidly that they are not able to cope with them. They are groaning under the very burdens and being crushed by their very militarism. But when the Lord Jesus shall come He shall effect the judgment of the nations, and in the way of judgment restore the nations so that all the tribes of Earth shall be blessed in Christ, the seed of Abraham. All the nations of the earth shall serve the Lord Jesus and glorify Him as King of kings. “Christ shall have dominion over land and sea; earth’s remotest regions shall His empire be.” The Lord Jesus will cause the nations to do away with war. They shall beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks and they shall remember war no more when Christ shall rule. There will be no more naval academies or any military schools. He shall do away with all those things in the day that He shall reign. He is coming for the nations, the nations of Earth, and they shall acknowledge Him as the great God and Saviour. They shall not do so in this dispensation. God bless all the missions among the Gentiles. God bless the Chinese missions and the missions in Japan, India, Africa, and the islands of the sea. But we shall never be able to convert the world. However, when the Lord comes again He shall do it. He shall save the world because His very name is Saviour of the World, and He is true to His name. He shall do what He has promised. Read Psalm 22:27, “All the ends of the earth shall remember and turn unto the Lord, and all the kindreds of the nations shall worship before thee.” Don’t you see in the day that He comes again and restores Israel the restoration of the Jews will be as Paul says: Life from the death for all the nations of the world. Rejoice also in this hope, ye people of God!
To Destroy The Works Of Satan
The Lord Jesus shall come again to do away with Satan for He came to destroy the works of Satan, and He has not done so yet. Chicago is full of Satan’s works and there are very many pulpits that are doing the work of Satan, and many so-called Christian schools are doing the work of Satan. There are more “doctors of deviltry” than ever before. The works of Satan are simply terrific—stupendous. Transformed as an angel of light he is doing his work with the Bible under his arm. I prayed God continuously during my illness, “Lord, deliver me from the power of darkness.” I could feel that Satan wanted to destroy me and I said, “Oh, my God, Thou hast said that those that are waiting before thee shall renew their strength. Oh God, fulfill Thy promise and put Satan to shame.” And He did. Satan has power over the human body. Satan can cause sickness. You can see it in Job and the poor woman bound eighteen years. He can do that today. Just as the Spirit of God can take possession of our heart and life, so Satan can take possession of a man or woman. The works of the devil are seen in spiritualism—in all antichristian cults. John says in his Third Epistle that all those who deny that He shall come in the flesh the same is a deceiver and an antichrist. He uses the same word used in the first chapter of Revelation, “who is and was and is to come.” John says he who denies that Jesus is to come in the flesh again, the same is a deceiver—AN antichrist, not THE antichrist. Every liberal, I don’t care who, who denies that He is to come in the flesh both personally and visibly is a deceiver according to the word of Christ and AN anti-Christ, not a Christian.
Let us be bold as to the facts. Test the spirits and try them on this point and ask them, “See here, do you believe Jesus will come again bodily?” If they give a snub and a sneer, then you have just to tell them what the Word of God tells them: “This is a deceiver and an antichrist” (2 John 7). Don’t fear their frown; fear God’s frown, their favors. That is the Word of God. Every one, whoever he may be, however learned and eloquent, who denies that He is to come in the flesh is an antichrist—the work of the devil. Jesus comes to destroy the works of the devil and to bind the devil himself. He will take and shut him in the pit for a thousand years, and then he can no more deceive the nations. He gets the nations warring with each other, but when he is bound he can do it no longer. The earth, as Isaiah says in chapter 14, shall have rest, shall have peace, tranquility. There will be mental, social, political, and international peace when Jesus rules and reigns. He came to destroy the works of the devil. He did not do it at His first coming, so He will at His second coming. And again I say, rejoice in hope!
For The Honor Of His Father And The Holy Spirit
The Spirit is praying, “Come.” Don’t think for one moment that this prayer of the Spirit shall remain unanswered. When He comes again then the Spirit of God will be poured out on all flesh, not only on Jewish flesh as on His first outpouring, not only on the church, but on all the nations, and even on all the flesh of the earth. That is why the lion will be changed and eat straw like the ox; why the leopard can lie next to the kid, and the bear next to the cow, they will be then of a different flesh, because the Spirit of God shall have been poured out upon all flesh after the coming of the Lord. When in the Old Testament Isaiah speaks about the coming of the Spirit, he in every case is thinking of that outpouring of the Spirit upon all flesh, so that as the result of it even the desert shall blossom as the rose, the hills shall shout and the mountains shall clap their hands of the glory of the King of Israel. Jesus said at His first coming, “Father, I do always that which pleases Thee.” And He said, “Father (in His high priestly prayer), I have glorified thee on the earth.” But when He comes again He shall do it far more than at His first coming. You know this age shall end with prayer and praise to Christ and the Father. Because He humbled Himself He shall be exalted in that day, and then especially He shall have a name above every name, a glory above every glory, above all the proud and the exalted which are an abomination in His sight. They shall be brought low and then everybody shall confess that He is Lord indeed, unto the praise of the Father. What a glad hope this is, Christians!
Every knee shall bend to Him. That being so, why shall we not bend our knees now to Him? Why not, sinner, if it is sure according to God’s Word that someday you shall get on your knees before the Lord Jesus? Some day you will confess His name. You may never do it here. You may spurn it, you may laugh at it in ridicule, but some day you will have to bend your knee to Him. You will be compelled to, and you will have to confess that He , that once lowly Man of Sorrow, is Lord of lords indeed. Why, then, beloved friends, shall we not do it today—do it without being compelled by His omnipotent hand? Oh, beloved, Christ is coming again. Before we are through with this service tonight He may open up this old roof and take us in the twinkling of an eye. Are you ready? Are you ready for His coming? His glad and glorious coming? For His own honor, for the honor of His Word, for His beloved bride, for Israel, for the nations, for the chaining of the devil and the destroying of the works of the devil, and for the glory of the Father and the Spirt and the Triune God—are you ready for that coming?
It is a very solemn thing, because if you are not ready I will tell you briefly what will happen. You will have to go through the Great Tribulation when suicide shall be a luxury, not to be found. People shall strive and seek earnestly to find death in some way, and they shall not succeed. Think of the unspeakable horrors when the vials of God’s wrath are poured out. The salt of the earth, the light of the world is gone and the devil is upon the earth and the anti-Christ is trampling the nations. Oh man, oh woman and child, what will it be if you must go through those unspeakable horrors to eternal damnation? Oh, God forbid that any of you, who have heard the Gospel almost every day, who have the open Bible in your home—I say, God forbid that any one of you should go into the place where there is weeping and gnashing of teeth. It is awful! The blood fairly curdles in one’s veins and the heart is growing sick when we think that those who have listened to the Gospel, who know the truth, have rejected so great a salvation. God have mercy! In that day many folks shall think to enter and shall not be able. That is what the Lord says. He never told a lie. Are you ready, oh sinner? Are you ready for the Lord’s coming? You are ready if you are saved, and if you are not saved by the blood of the Crucified One, you are not ready. Are you saved? If you are not yet saved the Lord stands with open arms to receive sinners. We have sung so beautifully tonight, “Christ receiveth sinful men.” Praised be His blessed name! He eats with publicans and sinners. He gives Himself to sinners as often as He is pleased. He gives Himself to you, but if I give this Bible to you, it is not yet yours. You must receive this Bible if it is to be yours. Have you received the Lord Jesus Christ by the hand of faith? You know what faith is. It is the hand that receives and the eye that sees the cross and the crown. My people hear my voice, He says, and they follow me. It is the heart that loves Him; it is the foot that comes to Him; it is the mouth that cries to Him and eats His flesh and drinks His blood.
Every one that calleth upon the name of the Lord Jesus shall be saved. You call upon Him tonight and you shall be saved. If you, from the very bottom of your heart, cry, “Oh God, be merciful to me, a sinner,” I don’t care how great your sins are, if they are as scarlet and crimson, the Lord will make you whiter than snow. Will you do it tonight? Will you give your heart to the Lord Jesus? He is pleading with you. “If you hear His voice harden not your heart.” Do not postpone it; you may not have a chance tomorrow. Do not let the time pass. Come to the Lord Jesus. Come, He calls you tenderly, He calls you lovingly. Oh, come to the Lord and be saved!