We know that Jesus will return to Earth. Last week we learned that we are not trying to ‘earn’ His return. This week we will tackle how to move from earner of God’s blessings to an heir of God’s goodness. What do we need to do to prepare for His return?
Ordinary People. The moment of time between Jesus’ first coming and His second coming left the Apostles with many questions. They were pretty ordinary at this moment in their faith. They kept asking, “Is it over? Is everything about to be fulfilled?”
Their thinking was trapped by their theology. Jesus had expanded upon that theology, but they didn’t yet understand. They wouldn’t understand until they learned His theology under the tutelage of The Spirit of God/the Spirit of Christ. You see, they believed in a coming Messiah, the first Advent, the coming of Jesus. However, they did not yet understand the second Advent, The Return of Jesus.
Extraordinary God. The Spirit of God inside of Men. God had walked with men. God had visited men. But, God had not inhabited men. This is too wonderful for the imagination. What could happen in a life that God inhabited? Luckily now we know. Jesus, the God-Man, demonstrated what was possible.
Extraordinary Hope! Jesus is coming again in one of two ways. This will occur either on your deathbed or by His final return. You ARE going to meet Jesus!
Jesus’ Last Answer
Acts 1:6-7 (NLT) So when the apostles were with Jesus, they kept asking him, “Lord, has the time come for you to free Israel and restore our kingdom?” 7 He replied, “The Father alone has the authority to set those dates and times, and they are not for you to know.
The Wrong Question. Just like the apostles, we often ask the wrong question when faced with life’s challenges. We ask, “What are YOU gonna do, Lord?” What If God isn’t the one you are waiting on? What if instead, we ask, “What do you want me to do, Lord?”
The Right Answer. What did Jesus tell us to do? Jesus’ instructions are pretty simple, go – make disciples – teach them to obey. We are often worried about God’s plan and God’s part, when we just aren’t willing to do our part.
Acts 1:8 (NLT) But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere-in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”
You will Receive POWER (when you do your part). “There is power, power, wonder working power in the precious blood of the lamb.” There should also be a verse, “There is power, power, mighty working power from the Spirit of God In YOU!”
What does this Power allow us to do? Make money or friends? Live your best life now? If you actually got everything you dreamed of, would anyone else benefit? If you did everything God wanted you to do, think of how many people would be impacted!
There is power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you! What if we waited in prayer, fasting, until we received it?
You will be a WITNESS. God could easily make you rich, happy, healed or strong, but would these things make you a witness? A true witness has seen something, experienced something. They share what they have seen. You will have seen something so you could tell something.
Acts 1:9-11 (NLT) After saying this, he was taken up into a cloud while they were watching, and they could no longer see him. 10 As they strained to see him rising into heaven, two white-robed men suddenly stood among them. 11 “Men of Galilee,” they said, “why are you standing here staring into heaven? Jesus has been taken from you into heaven, but someday he will return from heaven in the same way you saw him go!”
The Return. Jesus is currently at the right hand of the Father. He, the Father, and the Holy Spirit are working from Mission Control. Jesus is interceding for us and is our advocate. The Spirit is working the will of God in His people on earth.
Jesus is coming back for His bride, His pure, beautiful, holy bride. She will be purified by His word, and by fire, and by her testimony.
Jesus is not returning to make the world into Americans. He will not institute a democracy, republic, or socialist form of government. He IS King of Kings and Lord of Lords and every knee will bow, and every tongue will confess that He is Lord. And, believe me when I say, that is what you want.
People Need To Know. . .
. . . that you have SEEN Something. It’s time to see something besides ourselves. Break your mirror and look out God’s window. It’s time to receive God’s Power. You can’t EARN this but you can receive this. It is a free gift that will completely consume you. Then, you will share what YOU have SEEN and HEARD.
. . . that there is a Solution. There is a solution for guilt and shame, for the dread of accountability, for an abundant, difference-making life.
. . . that Jesus is the Answer. We should work for the peace of our community and take responsibility for the good of our society. BUT, the ANSWER is Jesus. He’s the ONLY True King.
. . . that Jesus is Coming again. We have a job to do. Your employment and finances aren’t your real job. The job we have been led to do is to make disciples and give access to Jesus.
What Are You Trying To Earn?
We are not trying to earn Jesus’ return, just as we should not be waiting for God to improve our life circumstances. We should receive God’s power by becoming witnesses. Are you ready for Jesus’ return?