Behold I come Quickly
And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be. Revelation 22:12
Daily events locally and globally confirm the imminent coming of our Lord and savior Jesus Christ. But it is very unfortunate that the church which is currently the bride of Christ seems not to be ready at all. Our churches are filled with every sort of ungodliness; sinners are no longer confined outside the church premises, but are right now located within the church in multiples. The desire to pursue the cores of the kingdom is foreign to many of us. Our pulpit should be champion in this matter. Messages of righteousness, peace and holiness that can prepare men for Christ’s second coming are rare and scarcely preached these days.
I am aware that this is a big and compound subject in the bible. I am aware that there are several debates and discussions on the subject; I am aware there are some controversies too, most especially, about the time and dates and the manner of His coming. I am not here to approve or disapprove or prove any of sorts, because I have discovered that it is possible to win any of that discussion and have excellent knowledge about his coming, but still miss Him when He comes. So, I am here to point out the bible essentials for us, and God’s expectations on the manner of person we ought to be, in order to go with Him when He appears.
Please don’t get me wrong; knowledge is good and knowledge is safety, if the endowed use it wisely and rightly. But to prepare for Christ’s second coming, acquisition of knowledge of His coming is less important than to live a life that is worthy of His acceptance, anytime and till the time He appears.
And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be. Revelation 22:12
There are four words that jumped on me from that statement of our Lord Jesus Christ, and I will like to start with them.
The first word is ‘Behold’. When I surveyed it from few other bible versions, I came across the following words: Listen, Look, and See. So if you have not been listening, this is not a matter you can turn a deaf ear to; if you have not been looking, it is time for you to open your eyes and see and not just to see; you must look. All these words are calling our attentions to the reality of this subject matter. It is not something to be ignored. This is coming towards the tail end of the bible. It is for a purpose, that in case you have searched through the scripture and by omission, or deliberately you had not taken close attention over this matter of His coming; it is time to pause and see it. Among all that you have read before, this matter is to be read again. If you have been preaching and emphasizing other things, it is time to pause and begin to preach and emphasize messages on His coming.
My friends, God is telling you to listen, please evaluate what you have been listening to, and if you see that they cannot take you to meet Him in peace; stop listening to it. If your attention is on ephemeral and mundane things of this world, please change now.
The second word that jumped on me is ‘Come’. He is coming back, several scriptures confirm this, but it is placed strategically at the end here to remind us and for emphasis. Let no man deceive you, he is coming. Some people claimed that he is not coming again, while some believe that he came already. If both were true, then our hope is lost. But I believe that our hope is not lost; it is alive in the assurance that He is coming for us. From such men, please turn away. He is coming (Titus 2:13; Acts 1:11; 1 John 3:1-2; Rev 22:20)
The third word, I would like to impress on our hearth is ‘Quickly’. This shows the imminence, the impending, and how much time is left on our side. Beloved, please remember that He spoke that word several years ago. Though that may seems a long time in our estimation, remember that a day in His eyes is like a thousand years to us.
But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. 2 Peter 3:8
In case you are thinking that His coming is still far away, and you still have long time to misbehave; that maybe a very costly assumption. Please, don’t be deceived! His patience is to give you space to repent and return to Him.
The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up. 2 Peter 3:9-10
Don’t let the day catch you unawares! Get rid of every manner of sin and unrighteousness that can shut you out, when he comes. He is coming soon and it could be sooner than you thought. So, be ready now.
The Fourth word that jumped on me from that verse is ‘reward’. I am excited with this, that there is a reward for us. We are not just laboring for Him in vain. We are not just living for Him for fun. A reward is actually waiting for us. In case you are lukewarm or discouraged in your service to Him, please have solace in this; that you walk with Him and your work shall be rewarded. This reward is with Him. If it were men, there would be partiality and inequality. But with Him, there is no variableness of shadow, no favoritism, no prejudice. He will reward every one of us accordingly.
It is okay if men acknowledge us or reward us in their own way; but you cannot rely on that for the assurance of reward with Him. You must see to it that you endure to the end for you to be rewarded. The rewards are for those that endure to the end and for the overcomers. By the grace of God, you and I shall not be found wanting on that day. (2 Tim 4:8; Rev 2:7; 10; Rev 3:5)
Having said that, let me now show us the certain attitude to continuously and conspicuously embrace according to the scripture, if we are hoping for His imminent coming.
Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts; we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearance of the great God and our Savior Jesus Christ; Titus 2:12-13 (Empasis mine)
From this scripture about His appearing, we saw the lifestyle to deny and to pursue, for us to meet Him in peace.
What is ungodliness? In a simple way, ungodliness is ‘anti-GOD’- anything that is opposite of God’s nature is considered ungodly. When you bring it to the face of God so to say, and it cannot stand, then it is termed ungodly. The psalmist gave us a concise definition of ungodliness.
Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful. Psalms 1:1
If that describes your position and proposition and found walking with ungodly and standing with sinners; when He appears, it means you will receive opposite of blessings on that day. That ungodliness could be ungodly relationship or society. It could be ungodly properties; ungodly lifestyle, ungodly character, and ungodly values.
Denying worldly lust
Worldly lust is real, and this scripture is confirming it. More than the confirmation of its reality, it is warning and empowering us to say “NO”. As long as we are in the world, this lust exists, and it will be increasing. Lust is improper affection or desire for something. It is a negative force that let you desire what grieves God.
Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world; the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth forever. 1 John 2:15-17
This worldly lust is talking first and foremost of the immoralities of this present world; the lust of the flesh. This is the strongest weapons of defilement of all ages, and I see it becoming worse in our days. We read about the city of Sodom and Gomorrah in the bible, where uncommon immoral behaviors were mentioned among the adults. But I tell you in these days, it has been extended to the children and its tentacles have spread wide and far beyond imagination. Our culture is more confused on sexual immorality than any other one on every side and at every level, the cankerworm of immorality has eaten deep into the fabrics of our daily affairs. We see sexual perversion of various degrees. To worsen the case, it is largely legalized in several countries and cultures. There is rarely anything you see without the touch of immorality. The world system has so much painted it, that anything without the face of immorality is a failure. This is a great battle of mind that has conquered and rendered them useless in life and for eternity.
But the bible is not silent about this but rather warns us aggressively to stay far away from this culture and propositions of immorality. (1 Cor 6:18-19; 1 Thess 4:3-6; 2 Tim 2:22; Heb 13:4)
Run away from sexual immorality [in any form, whether thought or behavior, whether visual or written]. Every other sin that a man commits is outside the body, but the one who is sexually immoral sins against his own body. 1 Cor 6:18 AMP
Now, you see the counsel of the word of God when it comes to immorality; you run and not just run, you flee. You don’t negotiate immorality. Don’t be gentle on it, don’t appeal to it; if you do, it will ruin you and it is always disastrous. If you are reading this right now and have been captured by this giant of immorality, please humbly cry out to Jesus Christ. He is able and more than able to set you free, and deliver you from the pangs of hell.
Second on the list of worldly lust is the lust of the eyes. This is the desire to possess all things that appeal to our eyes notwithstanding the will of God. It is the desire to behold anything that is not pleasing to God. We are bombarded daily with images that seek to inflame our desire. Our eyes must be kept for our master, so that, it can view the images of heaven and vision and revelation of the plan and purpose of God. (Rev 4:1; Joel 2:28-) But unfortunately, many eyes had been caught in the trap of lust, they were full of covetousness. Some cannot do without pornography; some are in debt because they always run to get all that their eyes see.
My dear beloved, please check yourself. Are your eyes clean and pure? Are you already in the net of this lust? It is time to be delivered. Please, reveal it right now, don’t be quiet at all about it. It will not allow you to go with Him, when he appears. You must deny and disown it immediately. (Matthew 5:8; Job 31:1)
As I pause here now, are you looking for His coming? Are you prepared my friend? Behold and get ready
Pride Of Life
This is the third leg of the worldly lust. This is what the world use as a standard to define a person. This is the boasting about who you are, and what you have. Anyone can be given honor or dishonor base on this. The more you have to show the world, the more the world respects and hails you. This silent killer has murdered several Christians. Unknowingly, they have adopted the world ratings on this scale.
The pride of life could be positive spiritual virtues, which have become object of boasting. See the pharisees attitude in Luke 18:9-14
And he spake this parable unto certain which trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others: 10 Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican. The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican. I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess. And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner. I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.
You see the pharisee boasted on his ‘abilities’ before the Lord and despised the publican. Though prayer is good, fasting is good, giving is good, but we must never allow it to enter our heart and be object to ridicule or despise others. We must not use it to impress others or to suppress them. Pride of life put you in the pedestal of a judge, and that is the place of God. That was what catapulted Satan from heaven to the earth. You must ruthlessly deal with any iota of pride in your heart, privately and publicly. (Isaiah 14:12-15; Ezek 28:14-15; James 4:6)
THE ATTITUDES FOR HIS APPEARING
Teaching us that denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works. Titus 2:12-14 (Empasis mine)
From our study text above, if the hope of His coming is alive in our heart, this attitude must be our pursuit daily and continuously.
Redemption From All Iniquities
Zealous for Good Works
Time and space will not permit me to expound on these attitudes, which should become our life as we are patiently waiting for His coming.
As I pause here, please let us not be cumbered by the knowledge and phenomenon of His coming; instead, let’s get ready and prepare to meet Him unashamed. This is certain, our Lord and Savior is coming back. He is coming back to give us our rewards, and His coming could be anytime from now. All that is required for us to meet Him in peace is to get ready in holiness and righteousness, all the days of our lives.
He which testifieth these things saith, Surely I come quickly. Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus. Revelation 22:20