1 December 2014

The Two Advents of Christ

(Gospel e-Letter - December 2014)

There is a close link between the first and second advents of Christ. We may consider the glorious return of the Lord at the end of the age as the fitting conclusion to his redemptive work two thousand years ago.

Jesus said that a grain of wheat will remain alone unless it falls to the ground and dies, but if it dies it will produce a plentiful harvest. That is the reason why the eternal Son of God became a man and gave his life on the cross. He died to produce much fruit – the fruit are all the people he redeemed to himself. At his return the Lord will reap the fruit of his labours and will gather all his people in his Father’s house.

“Christ was sacrificed once to take away the sins of many; and he will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for him” (Hebrews 9:28).

So at his first coming Christ offered his body and blood as a sin sacrifice to relieve many from the burden and guilt of their sins. He will not bear any sins when he comes again because he has already done so previously. The Lord will come to save his people from the punishment of hell and to take them with him to enjoy God in heaven.

We do well to ask about the personal impact of the two advents of the Lord. Am I redeemed by the blood of Christ? Will he save me on the last day? Am I among those who are “waiting for him”? The Scriptures clearly answers such questions by identifying the genuine disciples of Christ.

“We wait for the blessed hope—the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good” (Titus 2:13, 14).

The redeemed consider Jesus as their God, and thus they worship and adore him. They also count him as their only Saviour, entrusting him alone with the salvation of their soul. Finally they manifest the work of Christ in their life by personal holiness, purity and fervent love.

What will the great day of Christ’s appearing mean to you? I hope and pray that it would be the joyful meeting with your Saviour.