After two rescheduled attempts, I finally had
my eyes examined today for new eyeglasses.
As they say, the third time is a charm.
Fortunately for me, my eye doctor said there
was no change in my eyesight from last year
to the present. I thought, it’s good some things
are not aging fast on my body!
Eye exams could also be helpful in understanding
scripture, especially as it relates to the end time.
However, 20/20 vision of the natural eye can be
a very blinding experience for Christ’s return.
Paul encourages us to have the “eyes of our
understanding” enlightened, (Eph. 1:18) That
refers to an inner vision of perception.
From time to time we get questions on the end
time where some are confused. That’s a good
thing because it indicates the possibility of a
Do you have these questions about Christ’s
1. If the second coming occurred in the first century,
what part of God’s word applies to us?
The answer lies in what is meant by applied. If the
question is asking whether or not there are future
prophecies yet unfulfilled for us, then the answer
There are no future prophecies in the Bible yet to
be fulfilled in our day. All end time prophecy found
its fulfillment in the first century.
All things written were fulfilled in connection with
Jerusalem’s fall per Luke 21:20–22. Christ stated
that the first century generation could not pass
away, till all were fulfilled, (Matthew 24:3, 34).
On the other hand, if it is a matter of applying the
word to our lives, it all is relevant as long as we
make proper use of it.
After the judgment scene depicted in Revelation,
the Bible says the men are yet being saved.
“And the nations of those who are [being Grk]
saved shall walk in its light…(Rev. 21:24)
In addition, we note that the kings of the earth
are bringing their glory and honor into the city.
Since God saves men by the gospel, and the
invitation is being extended by the Spirit and
the Bride to come, then preaching and salvation
is yet a part of God’s eternal kingdom.
In chapter 22:2, the tree of life is for the healing
of the nations. This is a figurative description
of salvation from sin, showing God’s kingdom
is on earth where men’s souls are yet being saved.
Further, the church is for all generations, forever
and ever, (Eph. 3:21)
2. The next question is, what happens to us when
we die if Christ has come and the book of Revelation
John said, “Write: Blessed are the dead who die in
the Lord from now on.” ‘Yes,’ says the Spirit, “that
they may rest from their labors, and their works
follow them.” (Revelation 14:13).
The time reference here as “from now on” is after
the hour of God’s judgment upon the harlot city
Before Jesus’ return, men died and went to Hades,
unable to enter their heavenly homeland. At Jesus’
return, death and Hades were destroyed. (20:14).
Thus, man no longer enters Hades at death but
is evermore in the presence of God.
3. Had the great white throne judgment happened?
The answer is yes. Peter announced that the time
had come for judgment to begin at the house of
God, 1 Peter 4:7.
He also said the end of all things had drawn near
in the first century. That is the same great white
throne judgment mentioned in Daniel 7, and in
Revelation chapter 20.
God judged those who obeyed the gospel as
righteous. In so doing, he established the
eternal standard of judgment for all eternity.
For example, when a matter goes before a judge
in the court, and the judge renders a final decision,
then the people affected by that judgment must
abide by it forever, or until that judgment is overturned.
The judge doesn’t have to keep making the same
judgment over and over again. Once the judgment is
rendered, its final.
In like manner, Jesus rendered a judgment on the
wicked and unrighteous. It is a final judgment. He
will never change it.
What was his judgment. For the righteous, he said
they would pass from death to life. “Most assuredly,
I say to you, he who hears My word and believes
in Him who sent Me has everlasting life, and shall
not come into judgment, but has passed from death
into life,” (John 5:24).
So God’s eternal judgment is that believers pass
from death to life. Those who do not believe are
under the judgment of condemnation. That’s God’s
final judgment. It will never change.
4. Do we ever receive the bodies where sin, pain
and sorrow is no more?
The scripture being referred to is Revelation 21:3,
“And God will wipe away every tear from their
eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow,
nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the
former things have passed away.”
These terms refer not to physical crying, death
or sorrow. Rather, they refer to sorrow over
the burden of unforgiven sin and condemnation
to its wages resulting in separation from God.
Now that Christ has died and brought redemption
to those who believe, they do not have to
grieve and mourn over their sins.
Jesus has given rest for our souls. Its the
spiritual blessings of salvation indicated here.
There is therefore, now no condemnation to
those who are in Christ Jesus. (Romans 8:1)
5. Does Christ’s return in the first century
destroy the “hope” of the gospel?
This question often comes up because of a
lack of knowledge in the manner of fulfillment
of end time events and blessings.
It is not a fulfilled hope that is harmful to
faith, but rather an unfulfilled hope.
“Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but
when the desire comes, it is a tree of life.”
“A desire accomplished is sweet to the soul.”
(13:19) Once should not be disturbed that
Christ returned in the first century because
that means we have a realized hope.
A delay or non-fulfillment of Christ would
make the heart perpetually sick as a result
of a defaulted promise.
Many skeptics have used this very idea
against futurists who believe that a yet
physical return of Christ was prophesied.
Because such has not occurred, they
denounce Christianity and the Bible.
However, when Christ’s return is properly
interpreted as being a figurative coming,
in connection with Jerusalem’s fall (Matthew
24:30, 34), then the apparent problem
is easily solved.
6. Finally, why is this life so painful if Christ
has come? The short answer is that people
are yet unwilling to submit to Christ and therefore
are responsible for much of the evil which
occurs in the world.
On the other hand, the Bible says Jesus came
to manifest his life in us.
“For we who live are always delivered to death
for Jesus’ sake, that the life of Jesus also may
be manifested in our mortal flesh.” (2 Cor. 4:11)
Paul’s eschatological goal for the church was
to manifest the life of Christ in our mortal flesh.