Sermon: The Day Christ Returns



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Purpose: To show that we need to get ready now for the Lord to return

The Day Christ Returns 

Don Ruhl • Savage Street, Grants Pass, Oregon • January 17, In the year of our Lord, 2016

Song Leader and Song Suggestions: Larry Amberg – “Our God He Is Alive,” and similar


  1. When Jesus Returns 
    1. He shall have a different purpose
    2. than His sojourn on the Earth,

      28 so Christ was offered once to bear the sins of many. To those who eagerly wait for Him He will appear a second time, apart from sin, for salvation (Heb 9.28).


  1. The Day Christ Returns: It Will Catch the Majority by Surprise 
    1. Why? Will be without sign.

      36 “But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, {NU-Text adds nor the Son.} but My Father only” (Matt 24.36).

      1 But concerning the times and the seasons, brethren, you have no need that I should write to you. 2 For you yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so comes as a thief in the night. 3 For when they say, “Peace and safety!” then sudden destruction comes upon them, as labor pains upon a pregnant woman. And they shall not escape (1Th 5.1–3).

    2. People say all the time that there will be signs.
      1. If suddenly many earthquakes or wars happen,
      2. people say it must be the time.
    3. The Bible shows that the day Christ returns, it will be business as usual.

      37 “But as the days of Noah were, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be. 38 For as in the days before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, 39 and did not know until the flood came and took them all away, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be. 40 Then two men will be in the field: one will be taken and the other left. 41 Two women will be grinding at the mill: one will be taken and the other left. 42 Watch therefore, for you do not know what hour {NU-Text reads day.} your Lord is coming. 43 But know this, that if the master of the house had known what hour the thief would come, he would have watched and not allowed his house to be broken into. 44 Therefore you also be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect” (Matt 24.37–44).

      1. People will make plans to get together.
      2. They will plan for marriages.
      3. Workers will be out in the field,
        1. expecting to receive a paycheck later in the week or month, but
        2. they will never see the paycheck.
      4. Women will be doing their normal household chores
        1. without any realization
        2. that no one will eat the meal that they preparing.
      5. Some people will have heard a sermon like this one, and
        1. they will be think about it later,
        2. believing that it was a little too dramatic
          1. when the preacher emphasized
          2. that Jesus could come at anytime.
      6. Therefore, unbelievers will continue to make plans for the future
        1. as though the affairs of life
        2. will continue as they always have.
      7. Christians will continue about their business as usual,
        1. for that is the way we must live.
    4. However, Christians know and fully expect the return of Jesus Christ.

      4 But you, brethren, are not in darkness, so that this Day should overtake you as a thief (1Th 5.4).

      1. They prepared themselves for that event,
      2. not by looking for signs that He may be coming, but
      3. by the right kind of life,

        5 You are all sons of light and sons of the day. We are not of the night nor of darkness. 6 Therefore let us not sleep, as others do, but let us watch and be sober. 7 For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk are drunk at night. 8 But let us who are of the day be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love, and as a helmet the hope of salvation. 9 For God did not appoint us to wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ (1Th 5.5–9).
  2. The Day Christ Returns Will Be Sudden and World-Wide

    3 For when they say, “Peace and safety!” then sudden destruction comes upon them, as labor pains upon a pregnant woman. And they shall not escape (1Th 5.3.

    1. People will not get a feeling
      1. that something fantastic or disastrous
      2. is about to happen.
    2. People say that animals often anticipate natural phenomenon, but
      1. they will have no idea about this event,

        16 For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first (1Th 4.16).
      2. Not only will the final return of Christ be a spectacular sight
        1. as He arrives in flaming fire,
        2. taking vengeance on the disobedient, and
        3. as the saints are resurrected and
        4. ascend to meet the Lord in the air, but
          1. Michael will announce the arrival of the King of the universe, and
          2. Michael will blow on the trumpet of God!
    3. All the world shall witness this event.
      1. Suddenly every concern of this world
      2. will flee from our minds
      3. as we are focus on the end of Earth’s history.
    4. Every person, believer and unbeliever, will participate in the event,

      7 Behold, He is coming with clouds, and every eye will see Him, even they who pierced Him. And all the tribes of the earth will mourn because of Him. Even so, Amen (Rev 1.7).
  3. The Day Christ Returns There Will Be A Resurrection and a Time of Vengeance 
    1. There will be the great general resurrection.
      1. Not even in death can someone escape Jesus Christ.
        1. Atheists and evolutionists will have a surprise greater than anything
        2. they could have ever imagined.
      2. Think what it will be like for people who taught others
        1. that Christianity was a fraud,
        2. saying there is no God and
        3. we are here solely by natural means!
    2. Christians see death and the resurrection as a welcome time.
      1. When Christians hear that there will be a resurrection they get excited.
      2. We know that eternal bliss is ahead of us.

        28 “Do not marvel at this; for the hour is coming in which all who are in the graves will hear His voice 29 and come forth—those who have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of condemnation (John 5.28–29).

        1. Even the people who knew nothing of Him;
        2. Even those who hated Him and wanted nothing to do with Him;
        3. Even those who have been in the graves for centuries;
        4. Even those who loved Jesus beyond measure,
          1. who were not recognized by the world, but
          2. they were remembered by the Lord;
    3. All of them and all of us,
      1. shall see and hear all these things.
      2. What a sight it will be
        1. when all the graves in all the cemeteries of the world; and
        2. all the dead who were not buried for some reason; and
        3. all the dead at sea;
          1. when the billions who have lived and died
          2. before the great resurrection
            1. will have their spirits reunited with their bodies and
            2. their bodies will change into spiritual bodies!

              51 Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed— 52 in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed (1Co 15.51–52).
    4. He will pour out His vengeance on those who have not obeyed Him.
      1. What despair will the unbelieving, and unfaithful Christians experience
      2. when they see the faithful arise from their graves,
        1. meet Jesus in the air, and
        2. when unbelievers see living Christians
          1. join the resurrected saints,
          2. all meeting the Lord, but
            1. everyone else is left behind.
            2. What will happen to them?
    5. Second Thessalonians 1 gives the horrible answer to that question,

      7 and to give you who are troubled rest with us when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with His mighty angels, 8 in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who do not know God, and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9 These shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power, 10 when He comes, in that Day, to be glorified in His saints and to be admired among all those who believe, because our testimony among you was believed (2Th 1.7–10).

      1. What shall be done for them on that dreadful day?
      2. Not one thing.
        1. God had already given His beloved Son on a cross for every sinner.
        2. If that would not convert a man or a woman,
          1. there is no hope, for
          2. the Father has no other plan.
    6. The terror and the loneliness for unbelievers
      1. will be worse than anything that they could have ever experienced
      2. while living on this earth,
        1. no matter what they had experienced.
        2. What could be worse than meeting God unprepared?
          1. How can people stand before the Almighty
          2. when they have not had their sins forgiven?
    7. What do you think the unbelieving world and the unfaithful Christian
      1. will want to do at that time?
      2. Revelation 6 reveals what they will want to do,

        15 And the kings of the earth, the great men, the rich men, the commanders, the mighty men, every slave and every free man, hid themselves in the caves and in the rocks of the mountains, 16 and said to the mountains and rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the face of Him who sits on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb! 17 For the great day of His wrath has come, and who is able to stand?” (Rev 6.15–17).

        1. How can anyone stand before the Lord of lords
          1. when they never confessed His Lordship, but then
          2. they see clearly that He is the Lord?
        2. How can anyone stand before the Creator of all things
          1. when they believe that He never existed and
          2. that we had arrived by evolution?
        3. How can anyone stand before the Righteous Lamb
          1. when they suddenly remember the unrighteous life
          2. that they had been living?
  4. The Day Christ Returns He Will Destroy the Earth and Judge the World  
    1. The earth and the rest of the universe shall be destroyed,

      10 But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat; both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up (2Pe 3.10).
    2. Unbelievers will not be able to go on living
      1. as they had been doing before,
      2. ignoring Christ.
    3. The earth and the rest of the universe will have fulfilled its purpose.


  1. Repent Now.

    11 Therefore, since all these things will be dissolved, what manner of persons ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness, 12 looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be dissolved, being on fire, and the elements will melt with fervent heat? (2Pe 3.11–12).
  2. This is why the church is so urgent with evangelism, 
    1. telling the world the good news
    2. that you can escape the condemnation and have part in all the good.
  3. Are You Ready for that Great Day? 
    1. It could literally be at any time.
    2. The first coming of Jesus had specific markers
      1. so that the Jews could know exactly
      2. when and where He was coming.
        1. His return will not have any markers.
        2. Are you ready?