Part 6: What will Jesus do?
Pastor John Talcott
Christ's Community Church
(7/14) Today we are going to finish up our series "Why Jesus?" and we are going to talk about the issue of what will Jesus Christ do upon his return. We’ve been looking at the most important person who ever lived, Jesus Christ. And we’ve looked at some significant questions, like what he has done, why he did it, and this week we are
looking at his return. What will happen… what will He do when he comes back?
Now I don’t know if you have had a bad week… well some of you I do… but you know one of those weeks when anything that could go wrong does? Maybe that’s a normal week for you? Maybe that’s your new normal?
Maybe its nothing life-shattering, but it just seems like nothing goes right. You know when you just can’t ever seem to get ahead. You know… the dog eats a toy, the kids get sick, they do this or that, things are tight financially, didn’t seem like it was ever going to stop raining, then it didn’t seem like the grass was ever going to stop growing, and
then the lawn mower has a flat tire. It is just been one of those weeks.
Sometimes you just got to wonder "What would make it all better?"
And that is what I want to look at today. I believe the second coming of Jesus is about the only thing that will make it all better. If we could get him to come back now that would be awesome… maybe He could come back for my birthday… that’s what I really want, Jesus to come back. Truly the only way that everything in the world and in my own life is
really going to get straightened out is with the Second Coming of Jesus. So let’s look at the Word of God together… let’s see what the Lord has to say to us….
In 2 Corinthians 5:1-10, "Now we know that if the earthly tent we live in is destroyed, we have a building from God, an eternal house in heaven, not built by human hands. Meanwhile we groan, longing to be clothed with our heavenly dwelling, because when we are clothed, we will not be found naked. For while we are in this tent, we groan and are
burdened, because we do not wish to be unclothed but to be clothed with our heavenly dwelling, so that what is mortal may be swallowed up by life. Now it is God who has made us for this very purpose and has given us the Spirit as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come.
Therefore we are always confident and know that as long as we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord. We live by faith, not by sight. We are confident, I say, and would prefer to be away from the body and at home with the Lord. So we make it our goal to please him, whether we are at home in the body or away from it. For we must all appear
before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive what is due him for the things done while in the body, whether good or bad. (NIV).
1. JESUS IS THE JUDGE
What will Jesus do when he returns?
What I found to be very interesting is that there is a very broad range of opinions, from various people, who have strange things to say about the Second Coming of Jesus.
The comedian Woody Allen said, "If Jesus came back today and saw what was going on in his name, he'd never stop throwing up" (Hannah and Her Sisters).
Theologian Mike Tyson… you know this one’s going to be good… He says, "All praise to Allah, I’ll fight any man any animal. If Jesus were here I’d fight him, too." (en.wikiquote.org).
Jimmy Carter, our former President says, "We should live as if Christ was coming this afternoon."
And so the question is; what will Jesus do upon his return? Will he throw up… will he get beat up… what’ll happen when Jesus comes back? What will he do?
Well based upon the Scripture we just read the first thing that I want to tell you is that Jesus will judge everyone who has ever lived. Now some of you immediately shut down. The walls come up, because we don’t like judgment. But the truth is… well here’s what Jesus says, "The Father judges no one, but has entrusted all judgment to the Son" (John
So Jesus is the one who judges. And I know that some of you have used this line before… you know like, "You can’t judge me." Well the truth is I don’t have to… we don’t have to… because the father "has entrusted all judgment to the Son." And honestly that is good, because I don’t know your life, your deeds, or your thoughts. I don’t see what’s done in
secret but Jesus knows and sees all. And he’s without sin… he’s all together good… and so he’s the only one who’s fit to judge.
It says this in Revelation, "Then I saw a great white throne and him who was seated on it. Earth and sky fled from his presence, and there was no place for them. And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Another book was opened, which is the book of life. The dead were judged according to what they had done
as recorded in the books. The sea gave up the dead that were in it, and death and Hades gave up the dead that were in them, and each person was judged according to what he had done." (Revelation 20:11-13; NIV)
Now I don’t know about you but I’m a person who really loves justice. When I see somebody raping, beating, stealing, or molesting, I want to see them arrested… I want them to reap what they have sown… I want to know that they won’t hurt people anymore… I like justice.
The problem is… despite the fact that we have police officers, a court system, a judiciary process… despite the fact that we do make an effort for justice. The sad thing is… sometimes you don’t catch the bad guys… sometimes you catch the wrong guy… sometimes people lie under oath… and all that just really clouds justice. But there is a day coming… a
glorious day… when there will be perfect justice. And on that day Jesus Christ who knows all of our hearts, our thoughts, our minds, and our lives. Jesus who knows everybody… knows everything we’ve ever said... knows everything we’ve ever done… will make a just, perfect, righteous judgment about who we are and what we’ve done in thought, word and deed. And that day is coming.
2. EVERYONE WILL STAND BEFORE HIM
The day is coming when we all stand before Jesus. There is a day coming when Jesus will judge us all and his judgment is perfect, holy, just, and good. And that being said, Jesus will judge both Christians and non Christians. For the non Christian there will be a judgment as to what punishment they will receive in hell. And for Christian there will be
a judgment as to what reward they will receive in heaven.
Now I know that what I am saying is not very popular; particularly here around the nation’s capital, but Jesus speaks of hell more than anyone. And he speaks of it as a literal place of conscious eternal torment. And so what Jesus says is there will be the place of justice… a place where the punishment will fit the crime… and in saying that I’m not
trying to be ignorant or arrogant… I’m just trying to be honest and faithful to the Word of God.
I mean here’s what it says in Romans Chapter 2, verses 5 and 6, "Because of your stubbornness and your unrepentant heart, you are storing up wrath against yourself for the day of God's wrath, when his righteous judgment will be revealed. God "will give to each person according to what he has done." NIV
So maybe you’re thinking, "I don‘t like hell." Then don’t choose to go there. The Lord sets before us a choice, "life and prosperity or death and destruction… love the Lord your God, walk in his ways, and keep his commands; then you will live and increase, and the Lord your God will bless you…" (Deuteronomy 30:15-18).
Just love God and love people. That’s the big idea that I want to communicate... because everyone will stand before Jesus at the end, there will be that final judgment, and those who are not Christians, those who don’t love God, will be sentenced to an eternity in hell. Those who are Christians, those who love God, will be pardoned of their sin, and
welcomed into the Kingdom of God.
So the question is not, "Can I avoid Jesus?" because none of us can avoid Jesus. The question is, "Will I welcome Jesus today and become a friend. Or will I confront Jesus tomorrow as an enemy?" And in saying that, I’m not saying that I’m any better than anybody else. I am a sinner. I have sinned against both God and man. I have sinned through
omission… through word and deed… I’ve sinned and there is no reason that God should love me. There is no reason that God should take me or any other Christian to heaven… no reason that any Christian should experience the forgiveness of sin.
You see because what it is… is a gift of grace… it’s the love of God… that Jesus lived the life that I couldn’t live. Jesus died the death I should’ve died. And because of that I don’t need to stand before God at the end and be judged for my punishment in hell. In a very real way I was judged at the cross of Jesus Christ, where he suffered, and he died
in my place for my sins.
And this morning let me assure you that you’re loved… because it is there at the cross where your judge shows how much he loved you… that he would be your substitute… that he would be punished in your place… and the result is that there is no hell for those who give their sin to Jesus, because Jesus has already paid the price!
3. WE LIVE FOR AN AUDIENCE OF ONE
Therefore I beg you… I urge you on Christ's behalf… be reconciled to God… come to peace with your Judge. For the Bible says, "God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God" (2 Corinthians 5:20-21).
But I am sure there are some of you here who have had those days where you’ve asked yourself… Why bother? Why love a God I can’t see? Why love my enemies? Why love my neighbor? Do you know what I mean? Why live a life of holiness and obedience to Jesus?
Well look back at verse 9, the apostle tells us, "So we make it our goal to please him, whether we are at home in the body or away from it. For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ…" (2 Corinthians 5:9-10).
You see today there are a lot of competing voices in our lives. There’s a lot of pressure from family, friends, coworkers, to sin… to compromise… to change your beliefs… and the key is to know that you’re really living for one day… that day when we’ll stand before Jesus and he tells us, what he thought of our lives. That’s really the day that matters
You see we live for an audience of one; we worship an audience of one, we serve an audience of one, we will die and rise to stand before an audience of one. We will be judged by the audience of one. And we will be rewarded by the audience of one. And so you and I must always keep in mind… keeping before us… the fact that for the Christian the goal is
to forever please Christ.
The Bible tells us in Revelation 21:4-5 when Jesus comes back and "the old order of things has passed away. He who was seated on the throne said, "I am making everything new!" And so we get a world where pain is not… because sin is no more… where everything new… and I love that; new bodies, a new heaven, new earth… the way things are supposed to be.
So this is Good News for us, but also for all of God’s creation and all of God’s creatures. You see that is the hope, the promise, and the longing of Scripture. When Jesus comes back it will be in a whirl of creative activity. It says this in Second Peter 3:13, "In keeping with his promise we are looking forward to a new heaven and a new earth, the
home of righteousness." And so one of the things that Jesus does when he comes back is that he restores creation to the way it was supposed to be. Of course this is the dream of every environmentalist, but that’s what it says in Romans chapter 8, "Creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the glorious freedom of the children of God" (Romans
So when Jesus comes back this means that we’re going to have good weather… seriously... I mean I grew up here in Maryland… I am used to having so much rain that it floods or we don’t have enough and everything dies. But the Bible says in Revelation, "The city does not need the sun or the moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light..."
(Revelation 21:23). Every day is a sunny day in heaven… and all of creation is yearning and anticipating the day when the curse is lifted and creation can be unveiled in all of its glory. And I know that is going to be awesome… just imagine what it will be like apart from sin... like the garden in the beginning.
What else will Jesus do? Now let’s be honest. How many of you have looked in the mirror and thought "This is not what God intended?" The devil’s been at work. How many of you have discovered that your body doesn’t work like it’s supposed to anymore? How many of you are on medication because of physical illness, physical therapy, and chronic pain. Some
of you know that your body is falling apart. It’s not working like it should.
Well the Bible says in 1 Corinthians 15:51-52, "Listen, I tell you a mystery: We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed" …isn’t that great? We’ll all be changed! "…in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet… the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed."
The picture we have of heaven is a very real earthly Kingdom with a real King named Jesus, who rules and reigns in peace and justice over all people, times, and places. And he will give us a glorified resurrected body just like His. So just as Jesus rose… so the children of God will rise… just as Jesus rose in a perfect, glorified, resurrected body; so
the children of God will rise in a perfect, glorified, resurrected body. No more sickness, no more death, no more wheelchairs, no more crutches, no more physical therapy, no more surgery, no more medication, and even though I praise God for them… no more doctors, because everybody’s fine.
And the last thing I want to share is that Jesus is going to set up a Kingdom. I don’t know about you but I’m so ready to have Jesus as King. King over all peoples, all places, all times. A loving benevolent King with absolute power and authority… We won’t have to have anymore elections. No more missed ballots, no more partially punched chads… hanging
chads… or dimpled chads, no campaign finance reform… just Jesus. It’s going to be awesome. Just our perfect all knowing, loving, gracious, King of kings, Lord of lords, Jesus in charge. And I long for that day when the Kingdom will be set up and the King will be seated and He "will say to those on his right, 'Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the
kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world." (Matthew 25:34)
I want you to get the concept that when Jesus returns he is a King… when he returns he’s setting up a Kingdom. And for you and I who are Christians, who have our hearts in heaven, have our minds in heaven, have our imagination in heaven, we look forward to seeing Jesus, the resurrection of the dead, and the eternal life that is promised. But don’t you
know sometimes the hard part is just in the waiting.
As the psalmist wrote, "I wait for the Lord, my soul waits, and in his word I put my hope." (Psalms 130:5)
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