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The Scriptorium

The Coming of the Son of Man

He's coming. Make sure you're ready. Luke 21.25-28

Luke 21 (4)

Pray Psalm 96.1-4.
Oh, sing to the LORD a new song!
Sing to the LORD, all the earth.
Sing to the LORD, bless His name;
Proclaim the good news of His salvation from day to day.
Declare His glory among the nations,
His wonders among all peoples.
For the LORD is great and greatly to be praised;
He is to be feared above all gods.

Sing Psalm 96.1-4.
(Mit Freuden Zart: Sing Praise to God, Who Reigns Above)
Sing to the Lord! O, bless His Name! All nations tell His glory!
Salvation’s tidings loud proclaim; let earth rehearse His story!
For God is greatly to be praised; His throne above all gods is raised.
Fear Him, and sing His glory!

Read Luke 21.1-28; meditate on verses 25-28.


1. What will happen just before the Lord returns?

2. How should Jesus’ followers respond when they see this?

Jesus had already told His disciples that, in the last days, many would come claiming to be Him (v. 8). But these would all be all false christs. When Jesus returns to gather His followers unto Himself, there will be no doubt that He has come again. Every eye will see Him as He comes in the cloud (v. 27).

His return will be announced with cosmic portents—strange signs suddenly appearing in the sun, moon, and stars (v. 25). Peter says the Lord, returning unexpectedly, will burn up the vast cosmos in a great conflagration (2 Pet. 3.10-12). The world will be pitched into distress and perplexity, and the seas and oceans will roar violently over all the earth (v. 25). So terrifying will these cataclysms be that men will be overcome with fear (v. 26).

But the followers of Christ need not fear. Instead, they must look up expectantly, anticipating the joy that will soon be theirs as they see Jesus coming in a cloud with glory (vv. 27, 28). His return means the final act in our redemption will have begun, when, because we shall see Him as He is, we will be like Him (1 Jn. 3.1, 2), and we will dwell together with Him in a “new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells” (2 Pet. 3.13).

The signs of our living in the last days have been with us since the destruction of Jerusalem (vv. 9-24). These should not cause us to live in fear, but in hope, as we daily look up to Jesus, calling on Him to “Come quickly!” (Rev. 22.17, 20), living righteous and pure lives (2 Pet. 3.11, 14; 1 Jn. 3.3), and knowing that the unravelling of the world and the collapse of the cosmos—whenever these may occur—means that the eternal covenant of God is shortly to be fully realized (Rev. 1.1).

Treasures Old and New: Matthew 13.52; Psalm 119.162
“When Jesus returns to gather His followers unto Himself, there will be no doubt that He has come again. Every eye will see Him…”

Please note that when this occurs, we will have moved from the If, Then to the definitive Then, When. “Then they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. Now when these things begin to happen…your redemption is near” (Lk. 21.27, 28). All bets are off. It is the Grand Finale. The anticipated Happening is happening, when the Son of Man appears, Jesus by Name, and every knee will bow, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father (Phil. 2.9-11).

Then, every opportunity given us to “to grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ” (2 Pet. 3.18) for our own benefit, and for the benefit of those in our Personal Mission Field is over. We must, until then, have the same mind as those who were rebuilding the wall around Jerusalem, “for the people had a mind to work” (Neh. 4.6). Our work is eternal, as we are seeking to rebuild souls, not walls. This is God’s Word and work that we are participating in, “For we are God’s fellow workers…” (1 Cor. 3.9).

“For the word of the LORD is right, and all His work is done in truth” (Ps. 33.4).

As Jesus said, “I must work the works of Him who sent Me while it is day; the night is coming when no one can work” (Jn. 9.4).

Although we cannot know exactly when He is returning, we know for sure that He is returning, and that we have only so much time to accomplish the work that we have each been called to do in His Kingdom on earth, in preparation for His eternal Kingdom in the new heavens and earth. So, let’s get our minds set and do it!

“Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord” (1 Cor. 15.58).

For reflection
1. How should Jesus’ coming again affect the way you work your Personal Mission Field?

2. How can knowing that Jesus is coming again be a means of encouragement to our fellow Christians?

3. How should the fact of Jesus’ return factor into our sharing the Good News of Christ?

When Christ comes in judgment, it shall be shown here by wonders in the heavens, the earth and the sea, which shall be like harbingers of that dreadful and terrible day. John Boys (1571-1625), The Second Sunday in Advent 22

Pray Psalm 96.11-13.
Give thanks to Jesus for His promise to return and take us unto Himself. Pray that He will come quickly.

Sing Psalm 96.11-13.
(Mit Freuden Zart: Sing Praise to God, Who Reigns Above)
Let heaven sing with lusty voice; let earth and sea sing sweetly!
Let fields and trees in Him rejoice, for He is coming swiftly
to judge the world in righteousness, the peoples in His faithfulness.
He comes; exalt Him greatly!

T. M. and Susie Moore

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Except as indicated, all Scriptures are taken from the New King James Version. © Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. For sources of all quotations, see the weekly PDF of this study. All psalms for singing are from The Ailbe Psalter (Williston: Waxed Tablet Publications, 2006), available by clicking here.

T.M. Moore

T. M. Moore is principal of The Fellowship of Ailbe, a spiritual fellowship in the Celtic Christian tradition. He and his wife, Susie, make their home in the Champlain Valley of Vermont.
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