H. L. Turner, 19th century
I will come again, and receive you unto Myself. (John 14:3 KJV)
The promise of Christ’s return has been a source of much comfort to God’s people through the centuries. However, it has also caused disagreement and even some divisions within the church. Not all Bible students and groups of Christians are agreed on the outline of future events. Even a casual acquaintance with the study of eschatology (the doctrine of the last things) will soon introduce such conflicting terms and interpretations as postmillennialism, amillennialism, premillennialism, posttribulation, midtribulation, and pretribulation.
Each of these positions has the support of excellent biblical scholarship and many sincere Christian followers. It is easy for believers to get confused with the many aspects of Christ’s return.
Although Christians may disagree on some of the specifics related to future prophecy, most will agree on these basics: Christ will return personally—Acts 1:11; His return will be visible—Revelation 1:7; He will come in power and glory—Mark 13:26; and His coming will consummate His salvation and judgment—John 5:21–29; Hebrews 9:27, 28. The anticipation of Christ’s coming places a responsibility upon believers both individually and corporately even now: To live lives of purity (1 John 3:3) and to be involved in getting the gospel to every nation before His return (Matthew 24:14; Mark 13:10).
“Christ Returneth” first appeared in Ira D. Sankey’s Gospel Hymns, No. 3 in 1878. It has since been widely used to impress and challenge God’s people with the truth of the imminent return of their Lord.
It may be at morn, when the day is awaking, when sunlight thru darkness and shadow is breaking, that Jesus will come in the fullness of glory to receive from the world His own.
It may be at mid-day; it may be at twilight; it may be, perchance, that the blackness of midnight will burst into light in the blaze of His glory, when Jesus receives His own.
O joy! O delight should we go without dying, no sickness, no sadness, no dread and no crying, caught up thru the clouds with our Lord into glory, when Jesus receives His own.
Chorus: O Lord Jesus, how long, how long ere we shout the glad song—Christ returneth! Hallelujah! Hallelujah! Amen, Hallelujah! Amen.
For Today: Matthew 24:30, 31; 25:13; Mark 13:32–37; 14:62; Luke 12:35–40; 1 Thessalonians 2:19
Live in the simple enjoyment that Christ will fulfill His promise—He will return—perhaps even this day. Sing this musical prayer—
Osbeck, K. W.
- And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the kindreds of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man come in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. And he shall send his Angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect, from teh four winds, and from the one end of the heavens unto the other … Watch therefore: for ye know neither the day, nor the hour, when the son of man will come. Matthew 24:30-31, 25:13
- But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the Angels which are in heaven, neither the Son himself, but the Father. Take heed: watch, and pray: for ye know not when the time is. For the Son of man is as a man going into a strange country, and leaveth his house, and giveth authority to his servants, and to every man his work, and commandeth the porter to watch. Watch ye therefore, (for ye know not whne the master of the house will come, at even, or at midnight, at the cock crowing, or in the dawning.) Lest if he come suddenly, he should find you sleeping. And those things that I say unto you, I say unto all men, Watch. … And Jesus said, I am he, and ye shall see the Son of man sit at the right hand of the power of God, and come in the clouds of heaven. Mark 13:32-37, 14:62
- Let your loins be girded about, and your lights burning. And ye yourselves like unto men that wait for their master, when he will return from the wedding, that when he cometh and knocketh, they may open unto him immediately. Blessed are those servants, whom the Lord when he cometh shall find waking: verily I say unto you, he will gird himself about, and make them to sit down at table, and will come forth, and serve them. And if he come in the second watch, or come in the third watch, and shall find them so, blessed are those servants. Now understand this, that if the good man of the house had known at what hour the third watch have come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be dug through. Be ye also prepared threfore: for the Son of man will come at an hour when ye think not. Luke 12:35-40
- For what is our hope or joy, or crown of rejoicing? are not even you it in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ at his coming? 1 Thessalonians 2:19