His Coming

Establishing Context

Not long after beginning his ministry, Jesus told the twelve apostles that they would not finish preaching (“The kingdom of heaven is near”) to the cities of Israel before the Son of Man comes.
Matthew 10:1–23

The Son of Man will come in his Father’s glory, with his angels, and will reward/judge each person according to what he has done. Jesus told those he was speaking to that some of them would live to see the Son of Man coming in his kingdom (and the kingdom of God, itself, coming with power).
Matthew 16:27–28; Mark 8:38–9:1; Luke 9:26–27

Jesus told the High Priest during his trial that, in the future, he would see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Mighty One and coming on the clouds of heaven.
Matthew 26:63–64; Mark 14:61–62; observed by Stephen (Acts 7:55–56)

After saying that not one stone of the Temple would be left on another, Jesus established a series of events that would be associated with this and “the end of the age”: - false Christs - wars and rumours of wars, and revolution - nation rising against nation, and kingdom against kingdom - earthquakes, famines, and pestilence - persecution of the disciples (specifically, he was speaking to four of his apostles: Peter, James, John, and Andrew) - apostasy and betrayal - false prophets and deception - increase of wickedness, causing love to grow cold - the gospel of the kingdom preached in the whole world, to all nations; and then the end - the abomination of desolation in the holy place (Jerusalem surrounded by armies), causing those in Judea to flee to the mountains - Jews in exile, and Jerusalem trampled by the Gentiles until the fulfillment of their allotted time - a time of unequalled distress (“the time of punishment in fulfillment of all that has been written”) - false Christs and false prophets performing great signs and miracles - immediately after the time of distress: the sun darkened, the moon not giving its light, the stars falling from the sky, and the heavenly bodies shaken - the sign of the Son of Man in the sky - the nations mourning - the Son of Man coming on the clouds, with power and glory - the angels sent out with a trumpet call, to gather the elect from wherever they are Jesus then establishes that these would occur before the concurrent generation passes away, connecting the passing of “this generation” with the passing of Heaven and Earth. The timing of the coming of the Son of Man (and, by extension, the passing of “this generation” and of Heaven and Earth), in this context, is known only to the Father.
Matthew 24; Mark 13; Luke 21; (see also Revelation 6; 2 Peter 3:3–13; Revelation 19–22)

There is a time when the dead hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear his voice live. Some in their graves rise, at the “last trumpet,” to live in glory, with a spiritual body, just as Christ did. The others (presumably those who do not hear his voice) rise to be condemned. According to Paul, the rising of those who hear the voice of the Son of God occurs at his coming, with a loud command, the voice of the archangel, and the trumpet call of God.
John 5:25–29; Romans 2:5–10, 6:4; 1 Corinthians 15:39–54; 1 Thessalonians 4:13–18; (see also Revelation 11:15–19)

Paul outlines the order of the resurrection: first, Christ; then, those who belong to Christ at his coming. After that will be the end, when Christ hands the kingdom over to the Father. Note, this alludes to a difference (and, therefore, suggests a period of time) between the coming of Christ and the “end.”
1 Corinthians 15:22–26

The coming of the kingdom of God is not observed; the kingdom is within.
Luke 17:20–21

Jesus tells his disciples that a time would come when they would long for one of the days of the Son of Man, but would not see it. This implies that there are at least two “days of the Son of Man.”
Luke 17:22

Speaking of the days when the Holy Spirit would be poured out on God’s people (beginning on the day of Pentecost, in Acts 2), the prophet Joel wrote, as quoted by Peter, “The sun will be turned to darkness and the moon to blood before the coming of the great and glorious day of the Lord.”
Joel 2:31; Acts 2:20

Christ has received and entered his glory (with his baptism and ascension).
Luke 24:26; 1 Timothy 3:16; 1 Peter 1:21; 2 Peter 1:16–17

In the Father’s “house” are “rooms” prepared by Christ for his followers, and he will come back for them, so that they will be where he is.
John 14:2–3; 1 Peter 1:3–11

Jesus will return a second time to bring salvation to those who wait for him, coming back in the same way he ascended into heaven (note, he was taken to heaven in a cloud).
Acts 1:9–11; Hebrews 9:27–28

Jesus will be revealed in blazing fire, with his angels, and, at that time, his followers will be avenged (the enemies of God and His people will be punished).
1 Corinthians 1:4–8; 2 Thessalonians 1:6–10; 1 Peter 4:13–14; Revelation 1:1–7

When the Lord appears (even as he appeared the first time), his faithful appear with him in glory.
Colossians 3:4; 1 Thessalonians 2:19; 1 Thessalonians 3:13; 1 Timothy 6:13–15; 2 Timothy 4:8; Titus 2:11–14; 1 John 2:28; 1 John 3:2–5

The day of the Lord overtakes those who are not watchful, like a thief in the night – implying that those who are watchful are not be overtaken as such. The day of the Lord/thief in the night is referenced in connection with the sixth vial, which, itself, is part of God’s wrath poured out at the coming of Christ.
1 Thessalonians 5:1–4; Revelation 2:5,16, 3:3, 16:12–15

The coming of Christ is preceded by apostasy, as well as the revelation of the man of lawlessness (the one who opposes and exalts himself above God, even sitting in God’s temple), who was being held back, and who is destroyed by the manifestation/brilliance of Christ’s coming (that is, his presence).
2 Thessalonians 2:1–12

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One of the “days of the Son of Man” was something the apostles would be eagerly looking for At least one of the “days of the Son of Man” would not be seen by the apostles The desolation of the Temple would be seen by some of the apostles The High Priest of the Temple would see Christ at the right hand of God and coming on the clouds About 3 years after his ascension, Christ was seen by Stephen at the right hand of God Christ entered his glory, at the right hand of God, when he ascended Christ comes twice – once for the atonement of sin, and again to bring salvation to his followers The two comings of Christ would seem to be the same as the “days of the Son of Man” There are two “days of the Son of Man” – one at his first coming, and the other at his second The apostles were alive for the first coming, so it was the second that they would long for and not see The first coming/day of Christ included, at least, his crucifixion, resurrection, and ascension The second coming/day of Christ involves the punishment of the enemies of his followers “This generation” would pass away at the coming of Christ, along with Heaven and Earth “This generation” would seem to be the “wicked” age, as opposed to a literal generation The “wicked” age would pass away at the second coming, when the enemies are judged The second coming/day of Christ is referred to as his “great day” Christ’s “great day” comes as a thief in the night The “great day” comes as a thief in conjunction with the sixth vial The sixth vial concludes God’s wrath God’s wrath is the treading of the winepress Christ treads the winepress Christ is seen treading the winepress in Revelation 19, as he returns to judge the enemies of God In judging God’s enemies, Babylon the Great falls and the beasts are defeated Babylon the Great is the city of Rome, and the beasts represent its empire We can conclude, then, that the second coming of Christ – the great day of the Lord – came as a thief upon those who were not watchful – the enemies of God and of his people – and brought about the fall of the Roman Empire, thereby bringing salvation to those who were waiting for him Furthermore, we can conclude that no physical return of Christ was ever intended, and that no future return of Christ is yet to occur (aside from our going to be with him at death) We can also conclude that the resurrection of the dead in Christ occurred concurrent with the fall of Rome, and all resurrection passages must be interpreted in light of this Finally, we can conclude that we are living in the unspecified span of time between the resurrection of the dead in Christ (at his second coming) and the “end” Paul referred to (which was shown to John as a symbolic period of “a thousand years”), waiting now for the time when Christ delivers the kingdom to God, and when God judges the remaining dead

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