Motivated by the Promise of His Coming (part seven)
And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight. And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel; which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? This same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.
Brethren, God the Son, God incarnate in human flesh, Jesus the Christ, our Lord and our Saviour is coming again. All throughout God’s Word, the promise is given, “Our Lord shall come again.” Certainly this is a glorious truth as we are “looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ.” (Titus 2:13)
Yet the truth of our Lord’s Second Coming is not just a glorious truth. It is also a motivational truth. It is a truth that should motivate us to live aright even now. In fact, this promise of our Lord’s Second Coming is employed as a principle of motivation at least once in every book of the New Testament except Galatians, Philemon, 2 John, and 3 John. Already in the first six parts of the message, we have considered such passages from Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, Acts, Romans, 1 & 2 Corinthians, Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, 1 & 2 Thessalonians, 1& 2 Timothy, Titus, Hebrews, and James. Now in this seventh part of the message, let us consider such passages from 1 Peter.
In 1 Peter 1:3-5 God’s Word states:
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you, who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.
In the last time, at our Lord’s Second Coming, we shall receive an inheritance from the Lord our God that is incorruptible and undefiled, that fadeth not away for all eternity, and that is already reserved in heaven for us. This is the lively hope unto which God our heavenly Father has begotten us again by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. Therefore, the promise of our Lord’s Second Coming should motivate us to bless and praise God our heavenly Father with all our heart and soul.
In 1 Peter 1:6-9 God’s Word states:
Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations: that the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ: whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory: receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls.
The promise of our Lord’s Second Coming should motivate us to rejoice in the heaviness of manifold trials that the trial of our faith “might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ.” Furthermore, the promise of our Lord’s Second Coming should motivate us to love our Lord through faithful obedience and to walk with our Lord through joyful faith.
In 1 Peter 1:13-17 God’s Word states:
Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; as obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance: but as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy. And if ye call on the Father, who without respect of persons judgeth according to every man’s work, pass the time of your sojourning here in fear.
The promise of our Lord’s Second Coming should motivate us to have our hearts and minds established in hope unto the end. Furthermore, the promise of our Lord’s Second Coming should motivate us to walk “as obedient children,” not fashioning ourselves according to sinful lusts, but being holy in all manner of behaviour. Finally, the promise of our Lord’s Second Coming should motivate us to pass the time of our sojourning here in godly fear of our heavenly Father’s judgment.
In 1 Peter 3:14-16 God’s Word states:
But and if ye suffer for righteousness’ sake, happy are ye: and be not afraid of their terror, neither be troubled; but sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear: having a good conscience; that, whereas they speak evil of you, as of evildoers, they may be ashamed that falsely accuse your good conversation in Christ.
The hope that is in us as believers is the lively hope unto which our heavenly Father hath begotten us again. It is the hope “for the grace that is to be brought unto us at the revelation of Christ Jesus” (1 Peter 1:13). It is our hope in the promise of our Lord’s Second Coming. Therefore, the promise of our Lord’s Second Coming should motivate us not to be afraid or troubled at the terror of those who persecute us for righteousness’ sake, but to be happy therein. Furthermore, the promise of our Lord’s Second Coming should motivate us to “sanctify the Lord God” in our hearts, making Him the priority of our hearts and lives no matter what the cost. Finally, the promise of our Lord’s Second Coming should motivate us to be always ready to testify of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ as the reason for the hope that is within us.
In 1 Peter 4:12-13 God’s Word states:
Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you: but rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy.
The promise of our Lord’s Second Coming should motivate us to rejoice, in the midst of fiery trials for righteousness’ sake, that we have the privilege to partake in the fellowship of Christ’s sufferings.
In 1 Peter 5:1-4 God’s Word states:
The elders which are among you I exhort, who am also an elder, and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that shall be revealed: Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind; neither as being lords over God’s heritage, but being ensamples to the flock. And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away.
The promise of our Lord’s Second Coming should motivate every God-called pastor to feed the flock of God which is among them, taking the oversight thereof with godly motives and godly leadership.For the Excellency of the Knowledge of Christ Jesus our Lord, Abiding in Christ, and Christ in us, Pastor Scott Markle