Jesus Christ and Our Relationship With Him Now and Forever
By Steven J. Hogan
It’s all about Jesus Christ. That’s right. Whether we talk about the past, the present, the end times, or the way distant future, we have to realize that it’s all about Jesus Christ. I mean He is the Creator of the earth, the Lord of lords, the Savior of souls, the Head of the church, the Judge of the world, and the King of kings. It’s sure not about us; it’s about Jesus Christ. Isaiah 9:6-7
Over 2000 years ago Jesus Christ came to this earth for one primary reason, to die on the cross and pay the penalty for our sins, so that we could be born again, forgiven of our sins, receive eternal life and be children of God, so we could personally know Him, love Him, serve Him, and be with Him now and forever. It’s all about Jesus Christ. John 3:16, Philippians 2:5-12
The best news ever is that Jesus Christ died to save us from sin, death and hell. He is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world. But He did not just save us. He is our Lord to lead us and our Friend to encourage us. He is now at this very minute the Word, the bread of life, the light, the living water, the way, the truth and the life. He is our spiritual sustenance, our strength, our rest, our joy, our peace, our portion, our possession. It cannot get any better than this. John 1:29, John 14:6
John 14:20 says, “On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you.” What an amazing reality, that through the working of the Holy Spirit, Jesus Christ is now in us, and that we are now in Him. God wants you to realize the closeness, the intimacy, the relationship, the fellowship you can have with Him, and the security and protection you can have through Him. Psalms 23, 63, 91; Ephesians 3:14-17
Now we have eternal life, this wonderful, “nothing better in the world” relationship with Jesus Christ. Enjoy Him, love Him, trust Him, obey Him, serve Him and wait for Him. We have it good with Christ now, but it is soon going to get supremely better. Being cramped in this physical and sin prone body keeps us from fully experiencing Christ. Living in this perverse and wicked world prevents us from fully knowing the Lord. Being hounded by the devil and his demons on this earth makes it hard at times to fully experience intimacy with God. But God gives us all the grace we need to say no to sin, to live for Him, and to be close to Him. Titus 2:12-13
Yet, we have a blessed hope, that Jesus Christ will appear, and redeem us, and take us out of here, out of this body, out of this world, and rescued forever from the devil. Jesus Christ wants this “redemption” for us more than we know, for He longs to be with us, so we can fully, wonderfully and eternally experience Him and all that He has for us. Might we see Christ rightly, and might we love Him now, and be satisfied with Him now, but might we also long to be with Him. Job 19:27, Ephesians 1:14, Philippians 3:10
Jesus Christ now sits in heaven at the right hand of God, but He is coming back to earth. He promised it, telling us over and over again, and that He’s coming back soon. Jesus also told us many specific details about His return and the events surrounding His return. You can read all about it in the gospels, the epistles and the book of Revelation. There is no mistaking that Jesus Christ, our Lord, Savior, Redeemer, Friend and King, wants us to know the what, the why, the when, and the how of His return, of His 2nd coming. Mark 13:23, Matthew 24, Revelation 6-7
There are over 100 verses in the New Testament that speak specifically about Christ’s return, His coming, His appearing, His revelation. Now that’s a lot of verses, which means that it must be very, very important. And in fact it is by far the single most important thing that could ever occur in this church age, and now we know that it could take place in our lifetime. Revelation 22:7
Why is Christ coming? To give us relief from persecution, to rescue us from the wrath to come, to give us rest from our labors, to redeem us from this earth, to rapture us into heaven, to reunite us with other believers, and to resurrect our weak bodies, transforming us to be like Christ and the angels. Yes, Christ is coming back to glorify us, but He is also coming back to judge the world, and then to rule as King over this world for 1000 years, and after that, to eternally reign with God the Father. 2 Thessalonians 1:4-7, Philippians 3:20-21, 1 Corinthians 15:20-28
God told us all He told us these things because He wants us to have hope. We live in a dismal, dreadful, diseased, devil controlled world, and we have to have hope, this promise of His glorious return, this promise of future blessings, this promise of being with friends in heaven, this promise of a great and eternal inheritance, but most of all, this promise of being with Jesus Christ Himself. Might we truly and greatly love our Lord Jesus, and might we be looking forward to being with Him in our heavenly home. Hebrews 12:23-24, Matthew 24:42-51
Jesus Christ loves us and wants us to be aware, awake and alerted to the fact that He is coming soon to take us to be with Him. And He has given us signs, a number of specific events that need to take place before His return, for He wants us to be ready and waiting, excited about His return. Our Savior, Lord and Friend wants our minds to be on Him, to be loving Him and not to be loving the things of the world. Colossians 3:1-4, 1 John 3:1-3, Psalm 73:25-26
Jesus Christ is so excited to see us, and to take us from this earth so that we can be with Him in heaven. He wants to take away all our pain and sorrow and tears and heartache and sin. He wants to love us like we have never been loved before. He wants to show us His great glory. He wants us to love Him, to sing to Him, to worship Him like never before. He wants to bless us like never before. He wants us to be in our new home. He wants to fulfill all the plans that He has for us. Psalm 16:11, Psalm 84, John 17:24
This return of Jesus Christ to planet earth is no small subject, no minor matter, no insignificant event. Next to Christ’s 1st coming, this 2nd coming of Christ is the most important event to take place on planet earth, and it very well could take place in our lifetime. We know that it will be soon, we just don’t know exactly when.
Sad to say, way too many Christians don’t know much about Christ’s return, or are confused or in error as to what the Bible says, or are too busy to think about it, or just don’t seem to care. This is unbelievable, and not acceptable! We need to wake up, to come to our spiritual senses, and to get excited about the truth, the fact, the reality of Christ’s 2nd coming. We need to set our minds on Christ while we live on this earth. We need to be doing the work Christ wants us to do. We need to be working for Him. And we need to be waiting for Him. 1 Thessalonians 1:9-10
There is no doubt that Jesus Christ is coming back, and He wants our minds to be convinced that He is coming back, and our hearts to be affected by the fact that He’s coming back. He wants us to be looking forward to His return, to being with Him, to seeing Him face to face, to being with Him forever and ever, on earth and in heaven. If you have a good friend or a relative, someone you really like, and they are coming to visit you, and you haven’t seen them for a while, then you are usually very excited, and you can’t wait to see him, and so you get ready and prepared for their visit. But we are not talking about just any old friend or a relative – we are talking about our Lord, Savior, Friend and King. Might you then be excited, and even ecstatic about Christ’s coming.
Do you remember the stories from Luke 2 about Anna and Simeon, and how they knew Christ was coming, and they were looking forward to Christ’s coming, and they were telling others about His coming? They knew with absolute certainty that the Messiah was coming, for they had believed the Old Testament promises about a coming Savior, Redeemer and King.
As you know, Jesus Christ’s main purpose at His 1st coming was to show Himself to be God, to live a perfect life, to die for our sins, and then be raised again. And all this really took place, and then Christ ascended into heaven; and He has been there during this church age, building the church, praying for the church, waiting for the time to come and get us. And soon Christ will return to rapture the church that is still on earth, to judge the world, and then to reign as King over the world. And so here we are, 2000 years after Christ’s 1stcoming, and we know that it won’t be long before Christ’s 2ndcoming. If Simeon and Anna were excited back then, should we not be all the more excited now?
Might God do a fresh work in your heart, weaning you away sin, self, and worldliness, and filling you with a fresh and vibrant love for His Son. Might God fill you with a desire to serve Him and obey Him, for now is your time, now is your opportunity to serve Him on this earth. Never again will you have this chance. And soon Christ will return from heaven to take you to be with Him, forever and ever. Might you be working for Him and waiting for Him. And might you be praying for His kingdom to come, and His will to be done, on earth, as it is in heaven. Amen. Matthew 6:9-13