The Coming of the King

Date: 10/29/2023 
While we cannot predict the day of Christ’s return, we can know that it’s close—“even at the doors”—by the signs given in the Bible. But God’s Word not only tells us approximately when Jesus will return; it tells us exactly how. Will He come in secret—or in a glorious display of angels and fire?

The Day of the Lord Magazine - Paper or PDF Download

The Day of the Lord Magazine - Paper or PDF Download
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Doug Batchelor: The Great Basin bristlecone pine is one of the longest living organisms on earth. Doug: Incredibly, it can live more than 4,000 years. In fact, one specimen called the Methuselah tree in the white mountains of California is believed to be over 4,700 years old, and it's among the oldest living trees on the planet. This tree was around when the Egyptians were building the pyramids. Some of these ancient evergreens found on lonely mountain tops have weathered thousands of years of intense freezing wind, pounding rain, scorching sun, and violent electrical storms. How have they managed to survive for millennia of such harsh weather and adverse conditions? They do it by sending their roots deep and wrapping them tenaciously around the solid rock and hanging on.

You know, friends, Jesus tells us that there's a time of tribulation coming just before His return. An intense, frightful storm of trouble unlike anything we've ever seen. Is your life anchored on the solid rock of Christ? Let's explore together from the Bible just what will happen in the last days.

Doug: You know, one of the reasons that World War II was won by the Allies was because of a major deception that took place about how they were coming to Normandy. The English managed to capture one of the enigma machines that the Germans used to communicate, and so they already knew something about their plans. And then they began to send false messages to lead them to believe that they were going to do the landing up north, when, in reality, it was Normandy. And so what they did, they had these plywood phony ships they put in the water, and they had inflatable tanks in tents with nobody in it because, you know, back then the airplanes didn't have the same kind of photography that we have now. The German spy planes would fly high over and saw the great, big phony army. And Hitler was convinced that they were going to be landing at a different location, and they directed all of their forces there. And because they didn't know how they were coming, when the war began, they were successful.

Well, you can spin that around. It's very important for us to understand not only that Jesus is coming but something about how He's coming or we can be deceived. Now, this whole series is based on Revelation 14, but I want you to look especially right now at Revelation 14, verses 14 and 15. "Then I looked, and behold, a white cloud, and on the cloud sat One like unto the Son of Man, having on His head a golden crown, and in His hand a sharp sickle. And another angel came out of the temple, crying with a loud voice to Him who sat on the cloud, 'Thrust in Your sickle, reap, for the time has come for You to reap, for the harvest of the earth is ripe.'" He's coming to reap the earth. He's coming in the clouds of heaven.

Now, what do they call Him? Son of Man. Who is that? That was one of the most famous terms that Jesus used for Himself. Who would like to guess how many names Jesus goes by in Revelation? Someone did a count, and I think it's pretty accurate. Thirty-seven different titles for Christ in the book of Revelation. He's called the first begotten of the dead, the Prince of the kings of the earth, the faithful Witness, the Amen. I mean, He's got so many titles that tell different facets of His character. And you ever notice when they introduce royalty, they got these long titles? Well, Jesus is the King of kings, and He's got many titles that describe His territory and His character, and He is coming as the conquering King, the rightful owner of this world that He's redeemed. Amen?

Now, you can read in Acts 1:11, knowing something about how He came. "Men of Galilee," the angel said when Jesus ascended up into heaven. "Why do you stand here gazing up into heaven? This same JESUS," who is the Son of Man? Jesus, "who was taken up from you into heaven, will so come in like manner as you saw Him go into heaven." They what? They saw Him go. Will we see Him come? So the Bible says there in Acts chapter 1, the angel said He's coming the same way He left. How did He leave? Left in the clouds. How's He coming? Coming in the clouds. Was He real when He left? Yeah, He said, "Touch me. Feel me. I'm not a ghost." He ate in front of him. He'll be real when He comes. Did they see Him leave? Will we see Him come? Then will the Rapture be a secret? See, the word "rapture," and we--I think most of us all believe that we'll be caught up. The question is, are people caught up separately and secretly while the world goes on? And that's what many people believe.

Let's find out what the Bible teaches on this, okay? Question number two: Will Jesus come quietly when He returns? Let's first just establish that. When the Lord comes back, is it quiet? Is it secret? Let's see what the Bible says. You'll believe the Bible, right, friends? "For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a SHOUT, with the voice of the archangel, and the TRUMPET of God."

You know, I think it's interesting. There's a story in the Old Testament, one of my favorite. It's in Joshua chapter 2. It's the story of Rahab the harlot, who's mentioned three times in the New Testament. And it tells us that Joshua was coming to Jericho. He's entering the Promised Land. They're claiming the Promised Land. Do you know how to say "Jesus" in Hebrew? Joshua. Yeshua. Same name. Yeshua. And they blew seven trumpets. Are there seven trumpets in Revelation? And the men shouted, and they blew the trumpet, and the walls fell. Was that a notable, visible event? And Rahab and everybody in her house was saved. God's going to save His church; everyone else was destroyed. There's a judgment. It's a little picture-- miniature Old Testament picture of what's coming in the future, and you see that?

All right. The Bible says in Jeremiah 25:30, "The Lord will," do what? That's not a very good roar. "The Lord's going to roar from on high and utter His voice from His holy habitation; He will roar," there it is again, "mightily against His fold. He will give a shout, for those who tread on the grapes," and by the way, this is Old Testament. Jeremiah, grapes. Do you remember Revelation? It talks about the winepress press of God's wrath that we read about. It's a parallel verse.

Did I tell you there are 404 verses in Revelation, 278 of them can be found almost verbatim in the Old Testament? If you want to understand Revelation, you need to know the Old Testament because there's a lot of parallels there. "The Second Coming is going to be like a thief only because it will sneak up on those that are not ready." The Bible says in Revelation chapter 16:15, "Behold, I am coming as a thief." People say, "See? He's going to snatch away the church." But you need to read the whole thing. When Jesus comes like a thief to rapture the saints, and I agree. He's coming like a thief to rapture them up. But is it before or after the tribulation?

Let's read the whole verse. Second Peter chapter 3, verse 10. Write that down. I think it's in your lesson. "The day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in the which the heavens will pass away." What happens in the day when he comes like a thief? "The heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat, and the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up." Does life go on for seven more years when Jesus comes like a thief? No, clearly not.

What other physical events accompany Jesus's return? I'm going to have to move along quickly here, so you stay with me. "There were noises and," what? "THUNDERINGS, lightnings; and there was a great," and this is Revelation 16:18. "There's a great EARTHQUAKE, such a mighty and a great earthquake as had not occurred on the earth-- since men are on the earth." It is--you're talking about the big one. That's the big one, when Jesus comes.

Who will see Jesus when He comes? Is it a secret? The Bible says, "Then shall the sign of the Son of Man appear in heaven, and then," how many? "ALL the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming in the clouds of heaven." "They will see Him coming." What does it say? "They will see Him coming." Who? "ALL, with power and great glory." And He sends forth His angels to gather together His elect from the four corners of the earth, meaning north, south, east, and west.

Everyone a lot--now someone's going to ask the question, "Pastor Doug, the world is round. How can everybody in the world see Him come at the same time?" Doesn't say "at the same time." The day He comes, He's going to sweep around the world, the dead will be raised and they're caught up to meet the Lord, and the righteous are raptured up to meet the Lord, and He takes them back to glory. But everyone's going to see Him that day when he comes, right? You know, in the next 24 hours, the whole world is going to see the sun up in the heavens, right? This is--that shouldn't confuse you.

Who will be with Jesus when He returns in the clouds? I should really emphasize "how many?" "When the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all of the holy ANGELS with Him, then He'll sit on the throne of His glory." First Thessalonians 3:13, "At the coming of the Lord Jesus with all of His saints." Don't miss that. "All." It says He's revealed from heaven with His mighty angels, coming in the glory of the Father. "When He," Jesus, "opened the seventh seal, there's silence in heaven for half an hour." Now, that's Revelation 8:1. What does that mean? This explains it: if Jesus comes in the glory of the Father with all the angels, would it--who'd be making any noise in heaven? Who'd be singing in heaven? Why is there silence in heaven?

Now, it says "for about the space of half an hour." In prophetic terminology, a day is a year. We'll get to this later, but we'll show you. And so, when you break it down, a half an hour prophetically is about seven days. So the time that Jesus takes to come and to rapture up the church and take them on a parade through glory and bring them back to heaven, there's silence in heaven for seven days because there's no one there. Christ and all the angels have come like a victorious parade to rescue His redeemed. That's why there's silence in heaven.

What will happen to the righteous at Christ's return? "The Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will RISE first."

You know, there's two resurrections, Jesus said. There's a resurrection of the just and the resurrection of the unjust. There's the first resurrection. It says in Revelation 20, "The rest of the dead do not come forth until the thousand years are finished." That's your second resurrection. The dead in Christ rise first, and we are caught up to meet Him in the air. And so, you've got a resurrection happening. "Then we who are alive and remain," by the way, this is 1 Thessalonians 4. You can read 16 on through the end of the chapter. "We shall be," what? "CAUGHT UP together with them in the clouds." We go up together with them to meet the Lord in the air. This is the Rapture. The Rapture means to be carried away. Thus, we shall always be with the Lord. Can you say amen?

He's going to come send His angels together. How's it going to happen? First Corinthians 15:52, "In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we will be CHANGED." So, when the Lord comes, you know, some of us here, you may not need to die. And I know years ago, I thought, "Oh, I'm in. The Lord's going to come before I get old." But a day with the Lord is like a thousand years I've learned. But I think we're living in that generation where if God doesn't come soon, there won't be much left. And it's exciting to think--I'd like to live and remain and be translated, be transformed without ever tasting death. And all of a sudden, you go from this body, and proof, you get a glorified, immortal, perfect body caught up to meet the Lord in the air. How wonderful will that be?

"And He'll send His angels with the sound of a great trumpet, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds of the--from four winds, from one end of heaven to the other." So as He sweeps around the world, the graves of the righteous are opened, and they are resurrected with glorified bodies. And if they've died and they've, you know, been cremated, He'll reassemble--whatever He has to do, and they're going to be caught up to meet Him in the air.

So, considering what we've just looked at--and we've just given you a few scriptures. We'd be here all night if I gave you all the scriptures. Have we learned that the coming of Jesus is literal? Personal? It says that He Himself is coming. Visible? Is it audible? Trumpet, a roar, shout. Is it vitalizing? A resurrection. Is it glorious? All the angels like lightning. It's climatic. Does it sound like a secret to you? No.

What solemn warning did Jesus give about His Second Coming? Now, this is why this is so important. "For many will come in My name, saying, 'I am the Christ,' and will DECEIVE many." Jesus said, Matthew 24, "FALSE Christs and FALSE prophets will rise and show great signs and wonders and DECEIVE, if possible, even the very elect." If the very elect God-saved people are almost deceived, then how convincing are the deceptions? That's why you've got to know what's going to keep us from being deceived. You've got to know what the Bible says, friends. Therefore, if they say He's in the desert, do not go forth. If He's--boy, what a prime time for Him to suddenly appear in Jerusalem right now on the verge of a terrible conflict. Just before the Second Coming, Satan, disguise as Jesus, and his demons will pour out a mass deception on the world in their final attempt to confuse the church and to deceive people.

You don't have to be deceived. So how can I be sure that I'm not deceived in the last days? The Bible says the Bible is the answer. "To the law and to the testimony! If they do not speak according to this Word--" the Bible is called the law and the prophets. That's an Old Testament--they called it--Jesus called it the law and the prophets. Sometimes He says, "the law and the prophets," and "Moses." Sometimes he says, "Moses and the prophets," but it's talking about the Word of God. What keeps us from being deceived? How did Jesus meet every temptation? The Bible. You need to know your Bible because the devil reads the Bible. Amen. "To the law and the testimony! If they do not speak according to this WORD, it is because there is no light in them." Christ says, "Look, I have told you beforehand." He says, "I am warning you in My Words so you will not be deceived."

He wants us to know what's coming. What can we know about Jesus coming? And you notice what it says about "when," not just "how," but now we're talking a little bit about when He's coming. Well, for one thing, you read in Matthew 24, verse 33, "So also, when you see all these things," what things? The signs that He gives. "Know that it is NEAR." Can we know when his coming is near? "Even at the doors."

But what do we need to be careful to avoid? "But of that day and that hour KNOWS no one." Nobody knows. "Not even the angels of heaven, but My Father only." No one knows the day or the hour. Setting dates is not God's will. But notice again, He says in Luke 21, verse 28, similar to Matthew 24, "Now when these things begin to happen, look up, lift up your heads, because your redemption draws near."

Can we tell when it is near? The Bible compares the signs of Christ coming to a woman having a baby. It's birth pangs. And father of five children, I know something about how that all works. And, you know, mama gets big, and at first she starts having some contractions. It's just warm-up. Don't get excited. You know, usually first time they run to the hospital every time and doctor sends them home. They have these Braxton Hicks contractions, and the body is just getting ready for liftoff. Doesn't mean anything. You might have weeks. And--but then, as the time gets closer, you start noticing, "Ooh, another one. Ooh, another one." You call the doctor, you know what he's going to say? "How far apart are they? Don't bother me. I got to go golfing. You got plenty of time, especially if it's the first one." But then, as--you know what happens? As they increase in frequency and intensity, you know soon you're going to have a baby.

We've always had wars and rumors of wars. There have been earthquakes. There's always been problems in the world. But when you have world wars and world pandemics and an increase in natural disasters, you're seeing the birth pangs getting closer and closer together, and studies support that. Let's look at what some of those signs are. One of the signs you look, for instance, in Daniel 12, verse 4. "But you, Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book until the time of the end; many will run to and fro," The time of the end, what happens? "Knowledge will be increased."

Now, has something happened to human knowledge in the last hundred years? It is extraordinary. You realize for the first 6,000 years of human history, people got around on foot or horses, right? If you wanted to telephone somebody, you went over to their house. That's how we communicated.

Number 10: will there be an opportunity to repent during the Second Coming? No, it's like a sign out in front of the Baptist church. It said, "Repent now, and avoid the rush." Because the Bible tells us in Revelation that when they see Jesus coming, all the tribes of the earth will mourn. It'll be too late then. Someone was talking to a rabbi, and they said, "When is the best time to repent?" The rabbi said, "The last day of your life." And he said, "Well, what if I don't know when the last day of my life is?" He said, "Exactly. Do it now." You know, whenever the Bible calls a person, Jesus said, "Today, if you hear His voice." Now is the acceptable time. He says, "Come down quickly," He said to Zacchaeus. He calls us to Him. There's an urgency to come to Him. So there will be no extra probationary time.

The secret Rapture doctrine teaches that after the church is raptured, that those who maybe were not ready will then get another seven years. They'll have to go through the Tribulation, but then they can maybe repent and be saved again. And then they've got the righteous reigning over the wicked for a thousand years, and that just seems really strange to me. Righteous with immortal, glorified bodies reigning over the wicked that are dying? It's really bizarre. The Bible tells us that when we enter that 1,000 years, there is no more sin and suffering for God's people. So study this prayerfully and carefully. I want you to be ready.

What will happen to the wicked when Christ returns? "That lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord will CONSUME with the breath of His mouth and DESTROY with the brightness of His coming." When does the Antichrist get destroyed? Brightness of His coming. He doesn't get 3 1/2 years to sit in the temple. The coming of the Lord destroys him. Is that clear? You know, on a--if you take a flashlight out into the woods at night and you turn over a log and turn on the light, all the cockroaches sort of run from the light, but the moths will come to the light. The coming of the Lord is going to be kind of like that, and there's going to be the saved; they're going to come to Christ, and then you're going to have the lost that are going to run like cockroaches. So what do you want to be, a butterfly or a cockroach? Ever think of it that way?

Do you want to welcome His coming, or are you going to run from the brilliance of His coming? "The rest were KILLED with the sword which proceeded from the mouth of Him who sat on the throne--on his horse." So, first of all, is Jesus going to have a sword in His mouth when He comes? No, it's a symbol for the Word of God in His mouth. They're slain. The Bible says they're all judged by the Word. They've been warned.

Number 12: what is the primary purpose for the Second Coming? Why is Jesus coming? To get even with the wicked? No. He said, "I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go to prepare a place for you, I will RECEIVE you to myself; that where I am, you may be also." He wants us to be with Him more than anything else. The whole purpose of the plan of salvation--for the joy that was set before Him--He endured the cross so you could be with Him. He desperately wants you to be saved, and it breaks His heart for those that don't get ready.

Since we're living just before the Second Coming, how should we relate to this glorious event? See if we can time things so we repent on the last day to get ready then, or does the Bible say, "Therefore also be READY." When could you be ready for the Second Coming? By the time we have closing prayer. If you tell the Lord, you here, you who are watching. If you tell the Lord and say, "Lord, I want to be ready. I don't know how to do it, but I believe that you're going to make it possible." And you give yourself to Him, He will get you ready.

Do you believe it, friends? Jesus is coming very soon in the clouds, and he wants you to be ready to meet Him. Interesting story from history. I think many of us recall that when Pearl Harbor happened and when second World War began, America entered the war, we had a lot of troops that were stationed in the Philippines, and they just were not prepared for this attack. And thousands of troops, British and English, were trapped in Corregidor. Roosevelt told MacArthur, "You need to get out while you can. You're one of the most important generals." He managed to barely escape, and before he left, he said, literally, "I shall come again."

A lot of those troops, they fought to the bitter end, and it was the biggest surrender in American history aside from the Civil War. Two more years went by and there was a lot of fighting, and true to his word, MacArthur then strode ashore in the Philippines with 270,000 soldiers fighting, and they took it back, and they liberated the troops that survived. If he would keep that promise and say, "I will come again. I haven't forgotten about you." would Jesus leave when He said, "I shall come again." Do you believe Him? "Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe in Me. In My Father's house are many mansions. I will come again." He wants you to be ready, friends. Do you want to be ready?

Doug: Are you familiar with the prophetic signs of Christ's return and just how close we really are to the most extraordinary cosmic event in history? Will we be suddenly and secretly raptured as millions are left behind, or will Jesus's return be as loud and bright as lightning from sky to sky? Well, there might be a million different theories out there, but there's only one Bible truth. And Jesus promises if we seek, we will find. That's why "Amazing Facts" wants you to have the rock-solid facts on this subject with our newest Bible resource. It's called "The Day of the Lord." This colorful, fully illustrated magazine contains every fascinating fact you need to know about the when, where, and how of Jesus's soon return. To get your free copy, call the phone number on the screen and ask for offer number 825, or visit the web address. And after you read this incredible resource, be sure and share it with a friend.

Doug: Friend, God came to earth 2,000 years ago in the form of a man. His name was Jesus. He came for three reasons: to show us what God is like, to show us how to live, and finally, to die for our sins that we might be forgiven. But this only works if you choose to accept Him as your personal Savior, confess you're sorry for your sins, and invite Him to be the Lord of your life. His arms are open wide. Why don't you ask Him now?

Doug: Is there anywhere you can turn these days to find hope for a brighter future? Yes. Please join me, Doug Batchelor, on September 20 for the start of "Amazing Facts" Prophecy Odyssey, a Bible study extravaganza. These dynamic multimedia presentations will transform what we know about the world and your purpose in it. Bible prophecy is fast fulfilling. Are you ready?

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