“Men of Galilee,” said the angels, “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 1:11).
Those words inseparably linked Christ’s departure to the moment of His return — the reality of His Ascension and His Second Coming.
It behooves us to be watching and waiting, untainted by the world, since Christ may come at any moment. The apostle Peter put it this way: “But when the Day of God’s Judgment does come, it will be unannounced, like a thief…. Do your very best to be found living at your best, in purity and peace” (2 Peter 3:11-13, The Message).
Eagerness for the Lord’s return also motivates us to share the Gospel at every opportunity.
It is exciting to see that when the disciples asked the Lord a question about His return, His answer directed them to practical service. In Matthew 24, they asked Him about the signs of the times and the end of the age. He answered in a sermon that began with information about the end times but ended with a long application (the last part of Matthew 24 and all of Matthew 25) about how this information should result in faithful ministry: “‘Servants are fortunate if their master comes and finds them doing their job,’ He said” (Matthew 24:46, CEV).
Just moments before His Ascension, the disciples asked, “Lord, will You at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?” His reply: “It is not for you to know times or seasons which the Father has put in His own authority. But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be my witnesses” (Acts 1:6-7).
When will Christ return? When the Gospel has been preached to all nations: “And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come” (Matthew 24:14).
We are to witness by our words — the confession of our lips. We are to witness by our work — the consistency of our lives. We are to witness by writing — the circulation of our literature. Every way we can think to do it — personally, individually, collectively, by radio, television and internet, by snail-mail and e-mail — we are to witness for our Lord Jesus Christ while we still can.
The Lord’s coming is nearer than ever. Can you find a way to say a word for Christ today, write to an unsaved friend, pass along a copy of a Gospel of John to someone, or invite someone to church on Easter?
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SOURCE: Baptist Press