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Jesus Is Coming Again (3 of 3)
Ernest L. Easley
1 Thessalonians 4:13-18
One of the great themes and truths found throughout the Bible is the Second Coming of the Lord Jesus Christ. Just as there was a first coming of Jesus, there is going to be a second coming!
Now last week somebody asked me about the second coming. They asked if what we find in I Thessalonians 4 was a reference to the time Jesus returns to earth to set up His kingdom. Well, when you consider all the passages about the second coming, you will find that His return really comes in two stages or phases.
For instance, look with me to I Thessalonians 5:1-7, and then Revelation 1:7, ''Behold, He is coming with clouds, and every eye will see Him, and they also who pierced Him. And all the tribes of the earth will mourn because of Him. Even so. Amen.''
Now in I Thessalonians chapter 5, Paul compares the second coming of Jesus as being like a thief in the night. That sounds to me that it will be secret and sudden.
And then John describes the second coming of Jesus as being public: ''Every eye shall see Him, and they also who pierced Him.'' So, will His return be secret and sudden or will it be public? Which is it? Well, the answer is ''both.''
The first phase of His coming will be secret and sudden. The second phase of His coming will be public and ''every eye shall see Him.''
The first phase is what is called the ''rapture/resurrection'' or ''the first resurrection'' or ''the resurrection of life.'' The second phase is called the ''revelation'' (revealing) or ''the second resurrection'' or ''the resurrection of judgment.''
When the rapture/resurrection or the first resurrection takes place, that's when Jesus comes for us! When the revelation or the second resurrection takes place, that's when Jesus comes with us! Now stay with me here.
Between the rapture/resurrection/ the first resurrection of life and the revelation/the second resurrection of judgment are those 7 long ye ...
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