‘The UK's Coronavirus alert level has been downgraded from four to three.’ That was today’s headline on my News App. Down to level three, the story goes ‘there could be a gradual relaxation of restrictions’. A pleasure to read a happier headline, after difficult stories for so long.
However, what will be the next thing that will fill our media screens and press – no-one knew Covid would come, no-one knew that the shocking event in Minneapolis would happen. What’s next?
None of us knows the next big news, but Christians know one really important headline that will happen, one day, sometime in the future - ‘Jesus has come back!’. Christians will disappear and be taken to heaven. That will make some astonishing headlines! Perhaps – ‘Where have all the Christians gone?’ Perhaps – ‘Well that’s the end of Christianity!’.
There are many facts, established in history, and none more definite than that Jesus was alive 2000 years ago, lived an exceptional life, but then was killed by crucifixion. This is a historical fact – foretold in the Old Testament and then told real time, in the New Testament.
However, information about Jesus is also recorded in non-Christian historical documents. One was written by Tacitus, a Roman, during the persecution of Christians by Roman Emperor Nero In AD 62: ‘Nero fastened the guilt and inflicted the most exquisite tortures on a class hated for their abominations, called Christians by the populace. Christus, from whom the name had its origin, suffered the extreme penalty during the reign of Tiberius at the hands of one of our procurators, Pontius Pilatus….’
This old source tells us Christians took their name from a person called Christus (Christ,) - that’s what Luke tells us in the Bible. That Christ suffered the extreme penalty - Roman crucifixion. That’s’ in the Bible too. That it happened during the reign of Tiberius at the hands of Pontius Pilatus. Again, there in the Bible!
There are many sources that show that the Bible is a reliable source of information. It’s the authoritative source about Jesus, his life, his death, his resurrection, and that he’s now in heaven. But one REALLY BIG THING in the Bible that Jesus said is ‘I WILL COME AGAIN’. In the Bible, there are over 100 references to Jesus coming again. These are well-known:
John 14: 2-3: ‘In my Father's house are many rooms. If it were not so, I would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again’
I Thessalonians 4 16-17: “For the Lord himself will descend from heaven …. the dead in Christ will rise first …we who are alive, … will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord…. so we will always be with the Lord.”
These are messages of real hope for Christians. Jesus will come back to take all who have followed Him to be with Him. And when we say ‘hope’ we’re not just “hoping” - we know Jesus will return because everything else that the Bible said would happen to Jesus, did happen.
Hebrews 9: 28: ‘Christ, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to deal with sin, but to save those who are eagerly waiting for him.’
Jesus came first time to deal with sin, but second time round he will be coming for those who are ‘waiting for Him’ – those who have repented of their sins and entrusted their lives to Jesus.
Matthew also speaks about Jesus’ return in the Bible:
‘But concerning that day and hour no one knows …….. Therefore, you also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.’
Jesus is coming back. I don’t want to be here to read the headlines after Jesus has come back. Christians gone, but I’ve been left behind! I want Jesus in my life now and forever! I want to be ready.
This real hope is there for everyone. Trust Jesus!
Remember: Jesus is coming again!