Jesus Christ Will Return to Earth
Jesus Christ’s return to earth is misunderstood by many. Do you understand this important truth? Did you know there is a celebration dedicated to it?
One does not need to be an expert in geopolitics to see that the world we live in is extremely dangerous. What is extraordinary about the state of our world is how fast it is changing and how nations and individuals that were considered the most dangerous just a few months ago are almost forgotten as even more dangerous situations and people have arisen to take the spotlight.
Consider just four of the major crises and challenges the world faces today:
- Deadly natural disasters are taking place around the world. For example, recently, the United States and the Caribbean islands were hit with destructive hurricanes causing the loss of more than 100 human lives and billions of dollars in material damage. From July to September 2017, the nations of India, Nepal, Bangladesh and Pakistan have experienced massive flooding that has impacted over 41 million people. And a magnitude-8.1 earthquake shook Mexico and Central America.
- The erratic North Korean regime continues to move forward in its pursuit of deliverable nuclear weapons and has been flaunting that progress by shooting test missiles over its Pacific neighbors. With the U.S. president threatening “fire and fury” as a response to any North Korean attack, the threat of nuclear war is greater than it has been since the Cold War.
- The United States continues to disintegrate into the “Disunited States” because of domestic divisions and tensions that are increasingly becoming violent. From racial tensions to social and political division, America seems to be more and more characterized as a house “divided against itself” (Mark 3:25). This comes at the same time as the U.S. seems to be increasingly at odds with other nations—mainly Russia, China and European countries.
- Transparency International, which tracks corruption around the globe, has tracked an overall increase in corruption in nations around the world. This has led to millions of people being deprived of their basic human needs and could fuel the rise of populist politicians.
This list could go on and on.
The point is that we live in a rapidly changing world that is like a ticking time bomb, waiting to explode at any moment. It is likely that at this time next year, we will be discussing entirely new dangers and how the above problems have worsened.
Jesus Christ prophesied that “wars and rumors of wars” would characterize the global scene in the time leading up to the end of the age (Matthew 24:6). This would lead to a future era of human history called the “great tribulation,” which will be so dangerous and destructive that “unless those days were shortened, no flesh would be saved” (verses 21-22).
There is a time coming—to last 3½ years (Revelation 11:2; 13:5)—that will include warfare and disasters that will threaten every single person on earth. This will undoubtedly include nuclear and chemical weapons and global warfare. Natural disasters will also coincide with the man-made problems (Matthew 24:7).
But beyond that bad news is this good news: That time will be stopped! God will not allow us to annihilate ourselves!
The good news of how this death spiral to human destruction will be stopped is pictured by a special day called the Feast of Trumpets. You can read about this observance in Leviticus 23:23-25. Labeled as one of the “feasts of the LORD” (verse 2), this festival was to be observed on the first day of the seventh month on the Hebrew calendar (verse 24). This year, that day corresponds to Sept. 21. Christians will gather together around the world to celebrate this holy day.
On this day, they will celebrate the future great intervention that will save humanity from itself.
The great intervention
The Feast of Trumpets represents the fourth step in God’s plan of salvation, which includes the fact that human life will be saved through the direct intervention of Jesus Christ. Right after He ascended to heaven nearly 2,000 years ago, an angel declared, “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).
The Feast of Trumpets represents the fourth step in God’s plan of salvation, which includes the fact that human life will be saved through the direct intervention of Jesus Christ. Notice the details Jesus revealed in His Olivet Prophecy:
“Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory” (Matthew 24:30). Yes, every human eye will see Him as He descends as a powerful, radiant spirit being (Revelation 1:7, 13-16).
His coming will be announced by “a great sound of a trumpet” (verse 31)! This truth about a trumpet heralding the return of the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords is the vital link that connects the Feast of Trumpets with the truth about Christ’s return. To learn more about that link, read our article on “The Feast of Trumpets.”
What happens next?
We have seen why Jesus Christ will return—to save humanity. We have seen how He will return—with the sound of a trumpet in power and glory. But what will He do afterwards?
The Bible reveals that He will:
- Resurrect His people who have died throughout the ages. This will happen at the moment of the last trumpet (1 Corinthians 15:52-53; 1 Thessalonians 4:16). Read our new booklet The Last Enemy: What Really Happens After Death? to learn more about the details of the resurrection of the dead.
- Transform living Christians on earth into spirit beings (1 Thessalonians 4:17).
- Fight the nations of the earth who will gather near Jerusalem. These nations will be gathered to fight each other but will turn their weapons on the returning Jesus Christ when they see Him descending to earth. The battle will be short, as the returning King of Kings will quickly destroy them (Revelation 19:19-21; Zechariah 14:3).
- Descend onto the Mount of Olives. From that location in Jerusalem, He will begin His rule over the earth (Zechariah 14:4).
- Establish His Kingdom—government—on earth. On that day, “the LORD [Jesus Christ] shall be King over all the earth” (Zechariah 14:9). Yes, Jesus Christ is coming to govern and rule. “The kingdoms of this world have become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign forever and ever!” (Revelation 11:15).
The establishment of the Kingdom of God will begin a new era of history. This future era is referred to as “the world to come” (Hebrews 2:5). The rule of Jesus Christ, and His resurrected followers, over the entire earth will bring numerous changes to this world.
But before that change comes, there is one order of business that God will have to take care of. In order to bring peace and righteousness to earth, He must remove the root cause of suffering and sin. We will explain how He will do this in our next blog post: “Removing the Cause of Sin.”