For almost two thousand years, followers of Jesus Christ have patiently looked for Him to return.
He lived here on Earth for thirty-three years, died on a Roman cross, rose from the dead and ascended into heaven. His last recorded words were, “Surely I am coming quickly.” Those words were recorded around 95 AD and it is now 2014. He has not returned in these last 1919 years. His meaning of “quickly” is obviously not the same as ours.
John’s response to Jesus was identical to mine: “Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus!” Although I enjoy my life, and savor the moments that He gives me, I long for His Second Coming. I look forward to a world which is governed and controlled by Jesus, and not man.
The beauty of a sunset, the warmth of the summer sun, the rolling mountains and vast ocean, all testify to the glory of our God. I enjoy nature and the splendor of God’s creation. I love my wife and family, my church and my friends. I savor good food, love laughter and furry pets, and can’t wait to cuddle with my grandchildren. And yet, I long for a better home (Hebrews 11:14-16), a better world, a place without war, disease and evil. For the following reasons, I am praying to see my God:
1. This world is pulling further away from the Creator, not closer to Him. (Romans 1:18-32). Sin is growing worse every day. There are no man-made solutions on the horizon, no monumental breakthroughs in politics, science or technology to pull mankind upward. Humanity is on a downward spiral into chaos and we are taking the world with us. I grow weary of hearing the news: continual scandals in our American government, the encroachment of militant Islam, racial strife, the dismantling of traditional values, the satanic destruction of marriage and family…is there no end to the bad news?
2. True followers of Christ are hard to find. Many who profess Christ simply do not follow Him. (Matthew 7:21-23). Church goers have increasingly become compromisers, choosing to sacrifice morality in order to fit in with people who do not love nor worship God. I have witnessed a steady decline in godliness during my 52 years of life. There are many pew sitters who also sit on bar stools in honky- tonks and nightclubs. They sing about adultery, partying and sex during the week, and then attempt to sing praise to the Almighty for fifteen minutes on Sunday morning. The Bible declares that this is not right (James 3:6-12), but most people today see nothing wrong with it.
3. Preachers and churches have watered down the Gospel and neglected the” hard” teachings of the Bible for fear of offending folks. We lament that church membership, baptisms and worship attendance are on the decline. Our response to the problem is that we quit talking about sin, we try to make our preaching and music more appealing to the masses and we join right in with them in their way of life. Let me put it this way: If we get people to say the “sinners prayer”, walk them down the aisle and baptize them, but never tell them that they are sinners and need to change, then what have we accomplished? We haven’t saved anybody in that case!! The Bible states that we are to “pull them out of the fire” (Jude 23), not allow to wallow around it. I am sick to my stomach of compromise in the churches!!
As much as I love the good things of this life, the bad things make me homesick for heaven. Like the men who witnessed His ascension to heaven, I find myself “gazing up into heaven”, waiting for my redemption. The further that we fall into this colossal mess, the more that I long for His glorious return to this planet. “Now when these things begin to happen, look up and lift up your heads, because your redemption draws near.” (Luke 21:28)
I am NOT looking for the end of the world. I am looking for Jesus to take back the one that belongs to Him.