Is Jesus Really Returning?
Perhaps you read the book, “88 Reasons Why Jesus Will Return in 1988”? You can get the Kindle version on Amazon for $3.99. Or perhaps you read the sequel, “89 Reasons Why Jesus Will Return in 1999”? That one isn’t available…probably a good thing. I wouldn’t waste your $3.99 on the first book but this is an interesting topic. Jesus clearly taught His disciples that He would return. He really couldn’t have been clearer about that in the gospels. He’s coming back. The writers of the Bible seem pretty certain that the return of Jesus would be imminent. In 2 Peter 3 Peter talks about this. His focus is on those who are saying that since Jesus hasn’t returned yet, then He’s not coming again. He calls these folks “scoffers”…in a Christian way of course. Peter wrote 2 Peter most likely in the mid to late 60’s. That’s a long time ago but even then there were those who thought that since Jesus had not returned, that He wasn’t returning at all. Here we stand, 1950 years later and still no return. Here is what Peter writes: Beloved, I now write to you this second epistle (in both of which I stir up your pure minds by way of reminder), 2 that you may be mindful of the words which were spoken before by the holy prophets, and of the commandment of us, the apostles of the Lord and Savior, 3 knowing this first: that scoffers will come in the last days, walking according to their own lusts, 4 and saying, “Where is the promise of His coming? For since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of creation.” 5 For this they willfully forget: that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of water and in the water, 6 by which the world that then existed perished, being flooded with water. 7 But the heavens and the earth which are now preserved by the same word, are reserved for fire until the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men. 8 But, beloved, do not forget this one thing, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. 9 The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.
Peter is pretty confident that Jesus is going to return but He’s going to return at His own time. Peter also seems to write that the delay of the return of Jesus is connected to His desire that all should come to repentance. Jesus is waiting until those who will have entered into a saving relationship with Him have done so. Then, Jesus returns. That raises some questions in my mind like, “Well, does God have a particular person in mind that after that person converts, then Jesus returns?” or “Is Jesus’ return somehow conditioned on the actions of men?” I don’t have clear and concise answers to those questions but I do believe, by faith, that Jesus will return. Jesus said He would return in answer to a direct question from the disciples, (read Matthew 24 and 25). I’ll take Jesus at His word but I’m not planning on writing a book about why He’ll return in 2020 (the vision year) or something like that. Rather, I’ll just keep living my life in anticipation of His return, seeking to follow Him wherever He leads. I suggest you do that same.