Perhaps today will be the day that Jesus comes back

Posted: Friday, March 21, 2003

Perhaps today. Sounds like the motto of a pack of procrastinators. Or it may is the theme of some wishful thinker's weekly meeting.

When I had the sign maker etch it into a nice plaque to set on my desk, I'm sure she wondered what the message was. "PERHAPS TO-DAY."

Surely there was significance far greater than what she read in two words.

Other people noticed it and chuckled. Perhaps they imagined it meant a forlorn focus on the "to do" list, with a wistful glance at things they would rather be doing. Or maybe they just could identify with the notion of not accomplishing all you want to do, and yet hoping it will all work out.

The real meaning or message of the sign was not quite as mundane or mediocre as completing a long list of unfinished, menial tasks.

Instead, its purpose is to point out the reality that Jesus could return at any time. Perhaps today.

Holy Scripture records the promise of that event. Jesus spoke of his return many times in the Gospels (John 14:1-3).

His disciples, who wrote the rest of the New Testament, include many references to his coming (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17).

Theologians distinguish between two events involving Jesus' return called the rapture and the second coming. The second coming of Christ will follow a seven-year period of judgment upon the earth. It will initiate a millennium of majestic rule by Jesus over the earth. This will give way to the final, eternal reign of Jesus at the end of time.

The second coming is preceded by a rapture of the followers of Jesus.

The Bible admonishes believers to be ready and watching, for the rapture will be unannounced. Signs of the times show it will be very soon.

This return of the Lord for his faithful is a strong hope that serves as an anchor for faith.

Perhaps today he will come to take his children to their heavenly home.

Perhaps today the struggles, sorrow and sin will come to an end for the sojourn of the believer. Joy and comfort will be eternal, with no interruption by human frailty.

Perhaps today scripture that has long promised his coming will be fulfilled as well as additional promises like Revelation 21:4: "And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away."

Keep following Jesus and obey his word in faith (Acts 2:38). Keep watching and waiting. Hold fast to the heavenly hope. Jesus is coming back soon.

Perhaps today.

Mitch Glover is the pastor of the Sterling United Pentecostal Church located on Swanson River Road at Entrada. Bible classes are available for all ages on Sunday at 10 a.m. All are welcome.

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