By: Douglas M. Williams, Sr.
“He was taken up, and a cloud received Him out of their sight. And while they looked steadfastly toward heaven as He went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel, who also said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand gazing up into heaven? This same Jesus who was taken up from you into heaven will so come in like manner as you saw Him go into heaven” (Acts 1:9-11).
Jesus is preparing mansion in heaven for His faithful people and is coming back to take us there (John 14:1-3). But when He returns He will come as our judge, and not as our Savior as He was when He came the first time (Matthew 25:31-46).
When Jesus comes again it will be unexpected as a thief in the night, and the earth will be burned up (2 Peter 3:10-11). The resurrection will take place (John 5:28-29), and the Christians, with those still living, will be changed and receive an incorruptible body (1 Corinthians 15:51-54). Then all Christians shall be caught up together “in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord” (1 Thessalonians 4:17).
We must realize the necessity of preparing for eternity in this life because there will not be a second chance when Jesus comes again. As the Bible teaches, we must be obedient now because we are told, “now is the day of salvation” (2 Corinthians 6:2).
To be forgiven of sins we must obey Jesus by faith, repentance, confession, and baptism, and then live the life of a Christian as a follower of Jesus. The only way we can be blessed eternally is to “die in the Lord” (Revelation 14:13). The only way to be in the Lord is to be baptized into Christ (Romans 6:3-6; Galatians 3:26-27).
When Jesus comes again suddenly we shall be judged and rewarded according to the life we have lived (Hebrews 9:27). We dare not delay obedience to the gospel of Christ.
“The clock of life is wound but once, and no one has the power to tell just when the hands will stop, at late or early hour. Now is the only time you own; live, love, toil with a will. Place no trust in the morrow, for the clock may then be still.”
The tragedy of waiting for tomorrow to obey Jesus is seen when we realize that Christ may come today!