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Eschatology: Things to Come (part 2: Knowing the Season of His coming)

Hillcross MinistryEschatologyEschatology: Things to Come (part 2: Knowing the Season of His coming)

I want to prove this to you with the Scriptures. I hope you have your Bible handy and that you will look with me as I turn to various Scriptures — or maybe you can make a note of them and look them up later.

Let us look at the letters that Paul wrote to the Thessalonian Church,1 Thessalonians, chapter 5. I want to show you proof positive that you can know the season of the Lord’s return.

Let us begin reading with verse 1: “Now as to the times and seasons, brethren, you have no need of anything to be written to you. For you yourselves know full well that the day of the Lord will come just like a thief in the night.”

There it is! He is coming like a thief in the night!

Verse 3 says it will occur while people are saying, “Peace and safety!” At that time, says Paul, “destruction will come upon them suddenly like birth pangs upon a woman with child, and they shall not escape.”

Now, the fundamental point I am leading up to is found in verse 4. Underline it. Don’t ever forget it. This is the crucial verse. This is the verse that proves you and I can know the season of the Lord’s return. The verse, I Thessalonians 5:4, says “but you brethren are not in darkness, that the day should overtake you like a thief; for you are sons of light and sons of day. We are not of night nor of darkness; so then let us not sleep as others do, but let us be alert and sober.”

Now, what is that saying?

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Paul is saying:

  • Jesus is coming like a thief in the night. But not for the brethren, not for Christians.
  • He is coming like a thief in the night for the world.
  • He is coming like a thief in the night for pagans.
  • He is coming like a thief in the night for those professing Christians who do not have any personal relationship with Him and who have never really been born again and who refuse to believe the Word of God and study the Word of God. But He is saying, “Let me tell you, if you have been born again, if you are truly a child of God, if you read the Word and believe the Word, there is no reason in the world why Jesus should come as a thief in the night for you.”

Look again at verse 4: “But you brethren, are not in darkness, that the day should overtake you like a thief; for you are sons of light and sons of day. We are not of night nor of darkness; so then let us not sleep as others do.”*

What does he mean when he says, “We are sons of light and not of darkness”? What He is referring to is the fact that if you are truly a born again child of God, you have the Holy Spirit residing inside of you.

The Holy Spirit is the one who wrote the Bible. And if you will lean on the Holy Spirit, the Spirit will illuminate your mind and illuminate your heart and open your eyes to understand the mysteries of God’s Word, including the season of the Lord’s return. And so it is that the Bible says point blank, Jesus is not coming as a “thief in the night” for those who know Him and love Him.

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There is a similar passage in Hebrews chapter 10 verse 25. It says, “Do not forsake our assembling together as is the habit of some, but encourage one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near.”

What day? Well, the day of judgement mentioned in verse 27 — the day when the Lord will return. It is the day referred to in verse 31 where we are warned that it is a “terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God.” Note again verse 25 where it says that we are to encourage one another “as we see the day drawing near.” That means we can tell something about the season in which we are living. It means we do not have to be totally ignorant about the time when the Lord is going to return.

The point again is that No, we cannot know the date; but Yes, we can know the season.

Watch out for part 3. Shalom!

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