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Christ's Second Coming and Presence

Christ is Present

(Edit on 10.08.08)

Christ promised being with his disciples since Pentecost until the end of the world.  From this we know that the presence he mentioned in Matthew chapter 24 serves a different purpose — that it is special.

Matt 28:20 ". . .teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I commanded you: and lo,  I am with you always, even unto the end of the world." (ASV)

When Christians look at today's world conditions, it seems obvious that we live in the last days of this system of things! The signs indicate that the signs Christ gave for his special presence are being fulfilled since perhaps the 1830-1850s because of the proliferation of denominations that took place during that century.  That proliferation is unprecedented in our Christian history. 
Matt 24:3-14 And when he is sitting on the mount of the Olives, the disciples came near to him by himself, saying, `Tell us, when shall these be? and what is the sign of thy presence, and of the full end of the age?' 4And Jesus answering said to them, `Take heed that no one may lead you astray, 5for many shall come in my name, saying, I am the Christ, and they shall lead many astray, 6and ye shall begin to hear of wars, and reports of wars; see, be not troubled, for it behoveth all these to come to pass, but the end is not yet. 7`For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places; 8and all these are the beginning of sorrows; 9then they shall deliver you up to tribulation, and shall kill you, and ye shall be hated by all the nations because of my name; 10and then shall many be stumbled, and they shall deliver up one another, and shall hate one another. 11`And many false prophets shall arise, and shall lead many astray; 12and because of the abounding of the lawlessness, the love of the many shall become cold; 13but he who did endure to the end, he shall be saved; 14and this good news of the reign shall be proclaimed in all the world, for a testimony to all the nations; and then shall the end arrive. (YLT) 
The Good News is and has been preached worldwide for quite some time now! The number of churches abound, and not one of them teach undiluted Biblical truths; instead, they have fallen prey to the teachings of men in many many cases, the following of men and men's new gospel. A great many people have been lead astray!

Gal 1: 6, I wonder that you are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ, unto another gospel. 7 Which is not another, only there are some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. 8 But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach a gospel to you besides that which we have preached to you, let him be anathema. 9 As we said before, so now I say again: If any one preach to you a gospel, besides that which you have received, let him be anathema. 10 For do I now persuade men, or God? Or do I seek to please men? If I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ. (DRC)

The "abounding of lawlessness" has never been more evident. Fortunately, Christians remember Psalm 92:7 which gives them hope.

When the wicked spring as the grass, and when all the workers of iniquity do flourish; it is that they shall be destroyed for ever (KJV)

Christ's Death and Resurrection

According to our calendar system, Christ died around 3PM on April 1, 33CE, a Friday.   For those who like Math and such, please verify here: Calculation of Nisan 14, 33CE

If I read this right, Mary Magdalene arrived together with the apostle James' mother Mary while it still was quite dark, at dawn on Sunday the 3rd of April 33CE to find that Jesus Christ had already been resurrected!  Thus Jesus was dead less than approximately 9 + 24 + 6 hours = 39 hours.  If I am wrong tell me where. (John 20:1, Matt 28:1, Mark 16:1, Luke 24:1) Because I must admit ignorance as to what time it dawns on April 1 around Jerusalem my calculation may be a little off. For this reason, one might not be all that wrong by saying that Christ was dead about 40 hours — a number occurring repeatedly in the scriptures!

From Pentecost, Christ has been present among his believers and guided them by means of the Holy Spirit he received from his Father, the Helper. Using the above information but not going into a lengthy proof, Christ was born 33 ½ years previously, which approximately gives October 1, 2 BC for his birth date. Please remember to adjust you calculations to cope with the fact that historical events go from 1BC to 1CE. There is no Zero year!
Matthew 27:46-50 And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out in a great voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? That is, My God, my God, why have thou forsaken me? . . . 50And Jesus, having cried out again in a great voice, yielded up his spirit. 51And behold, the curtain of the temple was torn in two from the top to the bottom, and the earth quaked, and the rocks split (ACV)

Matt 28:1 Now late on the Sabbath day, being dawn toward the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary came to see the tomb. 2And behold, a great earthquake occurred, for an agent of Lord, having descended from heaven, having come, he rolled the stone away from the door and sat upon it. 3And his appearance was as lightning and his clothing white as snow. (ACV) 

Christ's Resurrection

Christ was not resurrected a man, in the flesh -- since he had sacrificed his human body, that was impossible.  Instead, he was resurrected a spiritual being, a heavenly archangel. (1 Thess 4:16)  As the apostle Peter confirms, Jesus'  resurrection was as a spirit being with a heavenly body as Paul told us in the scripture below.  (Indebt discussion here: Christ rose in the flesh or as a spirit?)
1 Cor 15:
50Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; (Webster)13 But if there is no resurrection of the dead, neither has Christ risen.

14And if Christ has not risen, then our preaching is empty, and your faith is also empty.

35But some man will say, How are the dead raised, and with what kind of body do they come? (ACV)

40And there are heavenly bodies, and earthly bodies: but different is the glory of the heavenly, different that of the earthly: (Darby)

44It is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body. 45And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul, the last Adam [was made] a vivifying spirit. (Webster)

I Peter 3:18, Because Christ also once suffered for sins, a righteous man for unrighteous men, so that he might bring you to God. Having indeed been killed in flesh, but made alive in spirit . . . (ACV)
 

Pentecost

On Pentecost, Christ's spirit (Rom 8:9, Acts 2:33), the Helper, the Comforter, the Paraclete arrived and was visibly distributed upon each and every disciple present who obeyed the edict to be gathered on that day!
Acts 2:1 And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. 2And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. 3And there appeared to them, cloven tongues as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. 4And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and began to speak in other languages, as the Spirit gave them utterance. (Webster)

Acts 2:33, Having therefore been exalted by the right hand of God, and having received of the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, he has poured out this which *ye* behold and hear. (Darby)
From Pentecost, Christians were "translated . . . into God's kingdom of his beloved Son." (Colossians 1:13, Webster)  Henceforth, Christians have continually been guided by the Helper and by God's general Holy Spirit. 

Because Christ promised right after his resurrection to be present in their midst whenever two or three assembled in his name (Mat 18:20), the presence talked about in Matthew 24:1-14 must by necessity refer to something else.  This presence may properly be associated with but not equated to God and Christ's Day of Wrath, or the Lord's Day, mentioned in e.g. Revelation.  What I am saying is that one must follow the other as two follows one.  The presence of Matthew twenty four is by necessity different from what already was promised to his disciples from Pentecost onward.

Some may believe that the difference is connected with Christ becoming king at this time.  However, as the page Coronation of Christ – When? shows, Christ became king upon sitting in God's throne at this right hand right after his resurrection in 33CE.  In fact, right after his resurrection before his ascension, Christ told us that this royal power had been bestowed upon him. ("Jesus coming spoke to them, saying:  All power is given to me in heaven and in earth" DRC Matt 28:20)

Since Pentecost Jesus' being in their midst was not fleshly, but spiritual; his presence was limited to his disciples. Because Christ no longer is human, the presence Christ mentioned in Matthew chapter 24 was neither physical nor fleshly, but spiritual and furthermore, widespread.
Matthew 18:20 Where for are two or three having come together in the my name, there i am in the midst of them. (Diaglott)

Matthew 24:27 As for the lightning comes out from east, and shines to west, so shall be also the presence of the son of the man. (Diaglott)
We are aware that from the time of Pentecost, the Helper and the general Holy Spirit has guided Christians in their preaching work since that time.  It guided the first century Christians, and it guides and supports present day Christians who are preaching the Good News.


Man of Lawlessness and Anti-Christ

From the time of Paul, the apostasy and anti-Christs began to creep into the congregation. Already as soon as the first century, this apostasy began to seriously affect the congregations. This was in fulfillment of Christ's parable about the weeds. (Matt 13:24, 30) In fulfillment of this prophecy , the world is full of Christian religions, all of these combined number of people professing to be Christians and their many churches constitute the field of wheat and tares.

24Another parable set he before them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man that sowed good seed in his field: 25but while men slept, his enemy came and sowed (1) tares also among the wheat.

30Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of the harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather up first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them; but gather the wheat into my barn. (ASV)

2 Thessalonians 2 
3Let not any one deceive you in any manner, because it will not be unless the apostasy have first come, and the man of sin have been revealed, the son of perdition;
4who opposes and exalts himself on high against all called God, or object of veneration; so that he himself sits down in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.

7 . . . or the mystery of lawlessness already works; only there is he who restrains now until he be gone, 8and then the lawless one shall be revealed, whom the Lord Jesus shall consume with the breath of his mouth, and shall annul by the appearing of his coming. (Darby)

The son of Perdition

 
Though the following may anger many, it shall be said.  The fact that we see the man of lawlessness, son of perdition, sitting on God's throne in God's temple claiming to be God gives us vital information.  Namely, that there are men, representatives of various Christian denomination churches globally, that claim to be sacred, who claim that the members of their church must obey them, must accept their explanation of Biblical matters as truth, who claim that to study deeply and understanding the Bible, apart from them, on one's own is wrong.

These men thus usurp a mediator-ship between man and God, man and Christ.  In this manner they sit in God's temple and claim to be God since they claim that they are the way to God as Christ isIn this way such Holy men are in fact the son of perdition.  Our gospel is not of this world; neither are we to refrain ourselves from verifying for ourselves what is good and acceptable, what is true and false in regards to the Bible. 

That the first Christian church had teachers is not denied; what also is undeniable is the fact that repeatedly the Christian is told to test the inspired expressions and to test those who claim to be apostles.  Thus no human may be exempt from this; no human may sit and claim to be in a position where it becomes the sacred duty of other Christians to have to listen and obey such.  No, all humans must prove their need to be obeyed in all instances by having all statements tested against the crucible of the Word of God.  All things should be examined and tested for veracity.  If teachings beyond the Bible's are embraced by 'Holy men,' representatives of the church, acceptance of this kind of teachings should be a matter of individual choice and conscience and should not be pushed upon the church goers as some churches do.
Rev 2:2, . . . and thou hast tried them who say that themselves are apostles and are not, and hast found them liars . . . (Darby)

The Man with The Ink-writer's Horn & the Harvest

We are now nearing harvest time. Perhaps one might say that the identification of the wheat and the tares is being done through the preaching of the Good News? (2 Thess 1:7-10) The Good News then marks those that receive it favorably with the mark of Exercise-of-Faith that leads to salvation.
Ezekiel 9:3-4 . . .and he called to the man clothed with linen, who had the writer's ink-horn by his side; 4and Jehovah said unto him, Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem, and set a mark upon the foreheads of the men that sigh and that cry for all the abominations that are done in the midst thereof. (Darby)
That the preaching and marking with the Good News is pre-harvest, Revelation 14:6,7,15,16 affirms. Here the preaching takes place in verses 6 and 7, next thereafter is the testing of the faithful which evidently is parallel in time with the preaching of the Gospel. Finally in verses 15 and 16, the harvest begins.
Matthew 13:39 The enemy that sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the end of the world; and the reapers are the angels. (KJV)
The harvest is now confirmed to equal Armageddon, "the end of the world" or the end of this system of things, not the end of the earth or of humans living on earth.  Here the angels go out and as stated above in Matt 13:30, the tares are gathered up first and burned, destroyed, while the others, the Great Crowd mentioned in Revelation, go into God's kingdom's realm, the earthly paradise.  Those that are taken may be the ones destroyed, and the ones left behind may be survivors, or vice versa. That is a point where the reverse statement contains no real difference since we don't know if taken means "brought along" or "taken in death."

Matthew 24:38-40, For as in the days before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, even till that day in which Noe entered into the ark, 39And they knew not till the flood came, and took them all away; so also shall the coming of the Son of man be. 40Then two shall be in the field: one shall be taken, and one shall be left. 41Two women shall be grinding at the mill: one shall be taken, and one shall be left.  (DRC)

Presence

Once Again: Since Pentecost, Christ has always been in the midsts of his disciples when two or three prayed, it says, in Christ's name and assembled for the sake of spiritual edification. (Christ also told us to pray to the Father, Jehovah, in his name.)  From this, we can gather that the presence mentioned in Matt chapter 24 and Corinthians below must be a different kind of presence! 
1 Corinthians 15:23-27 and each in his proper order, a first-fruit Christ, afterwards those who are the Christ's, in his presence, 24then--the end, when he may deliver up the reign to God, even the Father, when he may have made useless all rule, and all authority and power-- 25for it behoveth him to reign till he may have put all the enemies under his feet-- 26 the last enemy is done away--death; 27for all things He did put under his feet, and, when one may say that all things have been subjected, it is evident that He is excepted who did subject the all things to him. (YLT)
There are three types of reference in regard to Christ's second coming. The keywords are revelation, presence, and coming.  Because some translations render presence and coming with one word, the material below is included.

Presence comes from the Greek parousia. Here Strong's Greek dictionary states: 3952: parousia par-oo-see'-ah from the present participle of 3918; a being near, i.e. advent (often, return; specially, of Christ to punish Jerusalem, or finally the wicked); (by implication) physically, aspect:--coming, presence. see GREEK for 3918

Coming is from the Greek er' ·kho·mai shown in Strong's excerpt: 02064: erchomai er'-khom-ahee middle voice of a primary verb (used only in the present and imperfect tenses, the others being supplied by a kindred (middle voice) eleuthomai el-yoo'-thom-ahee, or (active) eltho el'-tho, which do not otherwise occur) to come or go (in a great variety of applications, literally and figuratively):--accompany, appear, bring, come, enter, fall out, go, grow, X light, X next, pass, resort, be set.

This specificity may assist in avoiding scriptural misunderstandings.
 

Presence:: Revelation

The three scriptures here tell of this coming with a finality -- the destruction of the ungodly, the rewarding of the faithful happens when Christ is revealed! This gives us the knowledge that there is difference in how Christ presence and how his coming is perceived in time and power.
1 Corinthians 1:7 So that ye come short in no gift of favour, ardently awaiting the revelation of our Lord Jesus Christ. (Rotherham)

2 Thessalonians 1:7-8 And to you who are troubled, rest with us when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven, with the angels of his power: 8In a flame of fire, giving vengeance to them who know not God, and who obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. (DRC)

1 Peter 1:7 so that the proof of your faith, much more precious than gold that perishes, and though proven by fire, may be found for praise and esteem and for glory at the revealing of Jesus Christ.

The revelation of Christ is tied to his coming with payback to all – as such it is impossible to ignore; after all, can a person ignore when around him people begin dropping in death in great numbers, or ignore the pangs of death that attack himself ?!

In contrast, his presence is shown to be unobserved by general mankind, all except the wheat individuals that are vulture like and see the carcass of Christ. That was why, Christ in Matthew chapter 24 gave his followers signs that, no matter how many years pass, permit them to understand, see with the eye of their hearts, that Christ's presence is upon them.

Still, if Christ has entered his followers into God's kingdom of his beloved Son, and evermore is in their midsts where two or three are gathered in his name, the conclusion that Christ's presence at the end of times must mean more is assured.  It is therefore clear that its reference to Christ being like lighting must mean that he is very busy everywhere in this final pre-Armageddon time with collecting and refining his sheep, both the little flock and the other sheep.  This perhaps is when he comes to his temple as the refiner!  Christ's Gr: erkoumai, his coming, his revelation must equal God and Christ's Day of Wrath of Rev 6:17. 

Presence:: Presence

In this first scripture four points are made:

A. (24) many false denominations will exist! Indeed, around the 1850's an explosion in the number of various Christian 'prophets ' arose. Many of these groups are still with us today and have splintered even further from their origin.

B. (25, 26) Christ will not be in any physical location for anyone to locate!

C. (27) Rather, he will be present in a widespread discernable manner through our eyes of faith and heart.

D. (28) Vultures or eagles are known for their sharp vision. Sharp spiritual vision is a must. The Christian has to be such a spiritual hungry vulture with sharp vision and predatory tendency toward the goal of finding the carcass of Christ.

Matthew 24:24-28 For there will arise false Christs and false prophets, and they will give great signs and wonders, so as to lead astray, if possible, even the chosen.25Behold, I have foretold it to you. 26If therefore they should say to you, Behold, he is in the wilderness, do not go forth. Behold, he is in the inner chambers, do not believe. 27For as the lightning comes out from the east, and shines as far as the west, so also will be the coming of the Son of man. 28For wherever the carcass may be, there the vultures will be gathered together. (NW)
Matthew 24:37-41 For, just as the days of Noah, so, will be the presence of the Son of Man; 38For, as they were in those days that were before the flood, feeding and drinking, marrying and being given in marriage,?until the day Noah entered into the ark; 39And they observed not, until the flood came and took away all together, so, will be, the presence of the Son of Man. 40Then, shall there be two men in the field,?one, is taken near, and, one, is left behind: 41Two women grinding at the mill,?one, is taken near, and, one, is left behind. (Rotherham)
From these scriptures, we see that the world at large ignores that Christ is present until the very end.  The main point regarding the presence is in verse 39, "and they observed not." Past tense because it shall be fait accompli! This assures that the majority of humanity ignores Christ invisible presence though the signs are a plenty.


Presence:: The Purpose with Christ's Invisible Presence -- continued next page!

Link to: Christ’s Presence – Page Two


 
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