Summary: Jesus’ first coming to earth 2,000 years ago was remarkable, astounding! All the blessings of His first coming are still valid and available to us today. His biblically prophesied Second Coming will ADD some amazing blessings to those we gained from His first coming. Come see and be stirred up to join the apostle John’s heartfelt cry: “Even so, come, Lord Jesus!” (Revelation 22:20, KJV).
Jesus’ 1st Coming
In His first coming, Jesus came as a baby. His birth-to-come was announced by an angel to a virgin woman, Mary. The infant was born in a stable and his first bed was a feeding trough (manger). Jesus lived His first 30 years quietly, far from Jerusalem, the center of Judaism. In His hometown He was known to be a carpenter. Then followed 3-1/2 remarkable years of public ministry, at the end of which Jesus was crucified, buried, resurrected the third day, and ascended back to heaven. From those humble beginnings, in just His last 3-1/2 years on earth Jesus redeemed us from the curse of our sins and offered forgiveness and eternal life to all who would repent of sins and receive and believe in Him.
In His second coming we will no longer see Jesus as a baby born into humble circumstances and living most of His earthly years out of the public’s eye. We’ll see our magnificent, glorious Savior Jesus come visibly down from heaven, with a loud shout, the voice of archangel, and the blare of the last trumpet. The dead in Christ are raised, and all the believers still alive at the time of His coming are caught up together with them to meet the Lord in air. From that glorious moment the redeemed of all time, the followers of the Lord, will “be with the Lord forever.”
The verse above speaks of “the rapture” of the redeemed believers. It tells of the “dead in Christ” being raised from the dead. Together with them the living believers at the Lord’s coming are “caught up” (from the Latin word that is the source of our word “rapture”) to meet the Lord in the air. This occurs at the visible, glorious, last-trumpet,
“Christ our Passover” (1 Corinthians 5:7), at the time of His first coming, shed His blood at the cross to redeem us. If we come to Him in repentance and faith, all our sins are forgiven! But we do still grapple with the temptations to sin day by day.
When He comes to earth “a second time” (still
Jesus was adamantly rejected by the majority of the Jewish religious leaders during His days of public ministry on earth. Even among the crowds who once followed Him eagerly, many turned on Him and joined those crying out, “Crucify Him! Crucify Him!” He had come down to redeem the world that He had created, yet many in that world resisted His message and “received Him not.”
Picture the Second Coming. We see in 1 Thessalonians 4 (above) and from other verses that all the world will hear a loud shout, the voice of the archangel, the blaring of the last trumpet, and will see Jesus and the hosts of heaven coming in glory. As Jesus said (Luke 21:27-28) “…they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. When these things begin to take place, stand up and lift up your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.”
Unlike the widespread rejection at His first coming, at His second Jesus will be gratefully and excitedly received by those who have come to Him in repentance and faith (Acts 20:21). These joyful ones will be “those who are waiting for Him … to be glorified in His holy people.” And speaking to fellow believers, the apostle Paul promised, “This includes you, because you believed.” If you are a born-again follower of Jesus Christ, you have nothing to fear of His second coming. Instead, as Jesus foretold, you can joyfully, hopefully “lift up your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.”
He had “emptied himself” (various translations say). This is one of the reasons Jesus said that He had come to earth — not to be served, but to serve (Mark 10:45).
The triumphant, returning-to-earth Jesus will be no longer “emptied,” no longer here as a servant, but as the glorious, omnipotent Savior … possessing all authority in heaven and on earth (Matthew 28:18). Revelation 19 (which also tells of His coming) speaks of Him as Faithful and True, with eyes like blazing fire, crowned with many crowns. He is called the Word of God, King of kings, and Lord of lords.
This second coming to earth of our Lord will be the time when He fulfills some of His earlier prophetic parables. In Matthew 13:24-30 Jesus speaks of the lost souls (symbolized by tares, weeds) being gathered and burned, while the saved (the ‘wheat’) will be blessed by being “gathered into [His] barn.”
In a similar prophetic parable (Matthew 13:47-50, KJV) Jesus had spoken of His second coming as “the end of the world” (49). The “net” would be drawn in and the “good” (the saved, “the just”) would be blessed by being gathered and preserved. At the very same time the “wicked” (the lost) would be “cast into the furnace of fire” (50).
What will make the difference between the saved and the lost at the second coming of our Lord? The answer is found in 2 Thessalonians 1:7-10, KJV — The Lord Jesus will be “revealed from heaven …  in flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ, who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of His power, when He shall come to be glorified in His saints and to be admired in all them that believe…” The eternally lost will have earned to themselves damnation by their choice to “know not God” and to “obey not the gospel” of Jesus. By contrast, the saved will have chosen in their lifetimes to know God through His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ (John 14:6) and to receive and obey the saving Gospel of Christ.
Jesus secured the great blessing of divine healing for us in His first coming. He healed multitudes then, and He still heals today. But we still die. Death is the “last enemy to be destroyed” (1 Corinthians 15:26, 54), and that occurs at Christ’s second coming, when the mortal bodies of the redeemed are changed into incorruptibility and immortality, as we will now read…
1 Corinthians 15 is the Bible’s great chapter on the resurrection of the saved at the Lord’s coming. It goes into detail about Christ’s second coming and the glorious resurrection and catching up of the saints to meet Him in the air as He returns triumphantly to the earth. This is what the Bible calls “the first resurrection” — the lost are not resurrected until after the Millennium, the 1,000-year reign of Christ with His saints on the redeemed earth (Revelation 20:1-6).
The apostle Paul tells us that “when He comes ... at the last trumpet” — that is, precisely at His second coming — Christ will raise from the dead “those who belong to Him.” Those are the redeemed of all the ages. There will also be some believers still alive at His coming (51). Along with the resurrected dead believers, “we will all be changed” (51). No more sickness, no more dying! We will be transformed into glorious, imperishable, immortal bodies — “…we eagerly await a Savior from there [from heaven], the Lord Jesus Christ, who … will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like His glorious body” (Philippians 3:20-21). Think of that! Your "changed," resurrected body will be like Jesus' glorious, resurrected body. My mind can barely grasp the magnitude of that great and eternal blessing!
My wife Linda and I do a daily Bible study together. Each time we realize, after all these years, how relatively little we know…and how much more we want to know — even after more than 50 years each studying the Scriptures. But the second coming will change that dramatically for the better.
At Jesus' second coming all believers will see Him “face to face.” And God’s grand mysteries of the ages will begin to be revealed in their fullness. “Then shall I know fully, even as I am fully known.”
“In this world you will have trouble,” our Savior forewarned us. For example, let’s look around us right now [written in 2022]. In the USA we have historic, crippling inflation. There is rampant crime, especially in many of the bigger cities. Innocent, unborn babies are still being savagely executed in the womb, in some states right up to the time of birth. Many more examples could be given. As the apostle Paul wrote prophetically, “There will be terrible times in the last days” (2 Timothy 3:1). But at the second coming, those terrible times will be instantly wiped away, as the redeemed enter with the returned Lord Jesus Christ into His glorious reign.
As we’ve seen, there will be a fearsome, cataclysmic second coming for those without Jesus. At the same coming there will be supremely great victory for His saved people! No more death for the redeemed. No more mourning or crying or pain! As we now look forward to that “Blessed Hope,” the second coming, we can also look forward to “a new heaven and a new earth, where righteousness dwells.” I’m thrilled by that promise. Imagine entering into the glorious Millennial reign with the Lord Jesus Christ, and then on into an eternity of "fulness of joy" (Psalm 16:11, KJV), where absolute, blameless, sinless, perfect righteousness prevails everywhere and forever. All these things and more will be ushered in by the second coming of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
Have these wonderful promises of Jesus’ second coming to earth encouraged you? Then let this be the heart cry of all who know and love the Lord Jesus Christ —
Perhaps someone reading this right now is feeling in your heart that you're uncertain of your relationship with the Savior, Jesus Christ. You can fix that right now! It is not difficult to come to Jesus for salvation and eternal life. And you can't buy it or work hard enough to get it. Salvation is a free gift from the Lord to you. The late evangelist Billy Graham has left a short, wonderful message for you on his website that will help you make your commitment to Jesus and to receive the blessing of eternal life. Please respond to that tug in your heart from the Lord and find your answers at Peace with God: The Secret of Happiness. You'll be eternally glad that you did.
For further study of the Second Coming, take a look at our:
BONUS! For those desiring an in-depth study of the end times, I highly recommend Bible teacher Elton McMillan's website. I believe it's among the very best end-time Bible studies available today. Elton's many excellent, descriptive charts and artwork are best viewed on your desktop or laptop computer. You'll find this free treasure trove of last-days teaching at The End Times Explained Step by Step | Bride of Christ
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Jesus' 2nd Coming Will Add to the First,
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Pentecostal Sermons &
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