Monday, December 31, 2007

The Coming of Christ- Des Walter


THE COMING OF CHRIST

One of the most talked about subjects among Christians today is what has been termed "The SECOND COMING" of Christ. Countless books have been written on this topic, expounding just as many concepts as to the "HOW" and "WHEN" of His coming. It is incredible how man has introduced terms, which are “Non Biblical”, and yet they have been so totally accepted, changing the whole Bible teaching on the subject.
Did you know the term "SECOND COMING" is not found in the Bible, but one would be forgiven for thinking it was, by the constant use of the term. Every time the Scriptures speak of His Coming, many people automatically assume it is a reference to what we have called His Second Coming at the end of the age. The result of this thinking is that we have been robbed of some of the most precious truths, concerning our day-to-day Christian life. More seriously it has created a vacuum in our understanding of the present High Priestly Ministry of Christ.
This is evidenced by the fact that many Christians celebrate the Birth of Christ at Bethlehem, with great intent, during what is called CHRISTMAS, also a non Biblical term and celebration. Then at Easter with equal fervor they celebrate His Death Burial and Resurrection, with another non-Biblical celebration called "Easter". After this they observe only one more event, and this is the "Ascension of Christ" when He returned to what Christians call "HEAVEN." From this time Christ disappears from view and most do not know where He is, or what He is doing, so they enter the "Silent" period until Christmas, when they again bring Him back as the Babe and worship Him in the manger.
All this because we have been taught there are only TWO COMINGS - One at Bethlehem as a babe born of a virgin and the "SECOND" at the end of the age. So most Christians LOOK BACK 2000 years and rejoice in His first coming and at the same time, constantly look forward to His "SECOND COMING" and the joy of "GOING TO HEAVEN".
HOWEVER - what is there to excite us here today? For most, it is, "Hold the Fort for I am coming". Our traditional theology has provided us with an anchor in the PAST, in the coming of Christ into this world at Bethlehem, and given us a Hope for the future, in His "SECOND COMING" at the end of this age. However no such excitement is generated for today, because our understanding has been affected by the doctrines of Men.
Jesus said in John 14:3, "I WILL COME AGAIN and receive you unto myself that where I am, there you may be also." We can therefore be certain of this fact that he would COME BACK. However as to when that "coming" would be and the nature of his return, few Christians seem to have any understanding. Remember Paul's statement in I Cor 2:14, "The natural man cannot understand the things of the Spirit of God "
There are so many scriptures relating to His "COMING":- Matt 24:27, I Thess 4:15, II Thess 2:8, James 5:7,8 to quote but a few. All of these speak of His "COMING", but most preachers add the word "SECOND" to them all, as if they refer to the same thing. Peter did not ask, "where is the promise of His "SECOND" coming," in II Pet 3:4 or James 5:7, "Be patient to the "SECOND" coming of the Lord". There is no justification at all for such additions, which destroy the truth.
To speak of Bethlehem as His "FIRST" coming is also most misleading. Micah 5:2 speaks of Christ and His GOINGS FORTH (plural), which are of old, even from everlasting. Bethlehem is only ONE in a whole series of Christ's appearings. The Lord CAME to Adam and EVE in the cool of the evening (Gen 3:8). Cain was said to go out from the Presence of the Lord (Gen 4:16). Then in Gen 17:1 the Lord appeared unto Abraham. He came to him. Also the Lord Came to Isaac and Jacob (Gen 37:7). The Lord Came to Moses at the Burning Bush (Ex 3:15,16). He Came to Israel at Mt. Sinai (Ex 19:9,18). In the days of Samuel the Lord Came to Shiloh (I Sam 3:21). II Chron 3:1 The Lord Came to David. In Jer 31:3 Israel exclaims, "The Lord hath appeared of old unto me"........
In view of the countless references to His "COMINGS" in the Old Testament, why do we call His Coming at Bethlehem His "FIRST" Coming? To be sure, it was a Coming of great importance, but each "COMING" has special significance in the on-going revelation of God to His people.
To regard every reference in the New Testament to His "COMING" as referring to one single event is a great error. Let us consider the main Greek word used through out the New Testament, which are translated into English as COMING.
3952 parousi,a parousia {par-oo-see'-ah} which means presence. 28 And now, little children, abide in him; that, when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming.
The following references show us the many and varied ways of His appearings.
REFERENCE ....
Mark 13:26 HE COMES with clouds
Matt 24:27 " " as lightening
Rev 16:15 " " as a thief
Matt 5:6 " " as a Bridegroom
Rev 2:28 " " as the Morning Star
Phil 3:20,21 " " in Resurrection Power
II Thess 1:7,8 " " as a Flaming Fire
Mal 3:1-3 " " as a refiners fire
I Thess 4:16,17 " " in the Air
Jam 5:7,8 " " as the Rain
Rev 19:11,14 " " on a white horse
Matt 25:31-34 " " as King
John 14:18 " " TO His Saints
II Thess 1:10 " " IN His Saints
The list could go on, showing the various manifestations in His Comings. Could I be permitted to ask the question, "Which of these comings is the "SECOND" Coming?
Most Christians see the only hope for the Church in Prophecy, and so confuse His Coming as Rain, as Bridegroom, as King, as a thief, thus creating confusion.
Let us look at a simple verse of Scripture in Rev 1:17, "Behold, He cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see Him". Note the word "BEHOLD" comes from the Greek IDOU. It expresses 4 things:- (1) Give attention to what is being said. (2) It is used when referring to something incredible. (3) It is the exclamation of one, pointing out something and calling attention to it. (4) Observe carefully what is about to be said. Furthermore the "clouds" referred to here are not the literal clouds in the sky but CLOUDS OF GLORY.
The Greek word for "HE COMETH" is ERCHOMAI - which means He comes as a present tense reality, which means, He comes and He has been coming and He is still in the act of coming. This is not some future coming that is referred to here. It is a present reality and caused the Apostle John to exclaim "He Comes"!! Luke 1:78,79.
In John 14:2,3 Jesus stated clearly to the disciples that He would go away, and if He did, He would come again, and receive them unto Himself. Christendom has been taught that this is a reference to the so-called "SECOND" coming at the end of the age, commonly referred to as the RAPTURE. Let us look at what Jesus said about "coming back". John 14:18 Jesus said, "I will come to you." He is the one that had dwelt WITH them but on his return he would dwell IN THEM. V.17.
Now let us look at the question in verse 22, "Lord how is it that thou wilt manifest thyself unto us and not unto the world?" Now note the answer in verse 23; we will Come unto him and make our abode with him. What do you think Jesus meant when he said WE will make our abode with him? In verse 20 Jesus makes a very clear statement, "In that day (of his coming) you will know that I (Jesus) AM IN THE FATHER, and YOU ARE IN ME AND I AM IN YOU."
What is this DAY Jesus spoke about which would result in such a revelation? It is a direct reference to the DAY OF PENTECOST, and the pouring our of the Holy Spirit. Jesus said, I go and I will return and come to you. The same one to go was the one to come back. But man has taught his own doctrines, which divide GOD into THREE thus giving us THREE GODS instead of the ONE GOD the Bible teaches. Tradition declares that ONE THIRD of God (God the Holy Spirit) was poured out on the 120 in the upper room. If GOD IS SPIRIT then the HOLY SPIRIT MUST BE GOD. God, who is SPIRIT, was IN CHRIST reconciling the world unto Himself.
You cannot divide God into three pieces. Israel knew the truth when she declared, "Our Lord is ONE GOD". Who then is Jesus Christ? He said, "I and my Father ARE ONE", and again - "If you have seen ME you have seen my FATHER".
When Jesus walked the Streets of Jerusalem no one really knew his TRUE IDENTITY, for they only saw his outward appearance. Therefore they identified him with one of the Prophets or simply the carpenter’s son. It was Peter who by revelation discovered his real IDENTITY as THE CHRIST THE SON OF THE LIVING GOD.
In John 14:20 Jesus refers to the DAY of PENTECOST when the Holy Spirit would come as our teacher and the revealer of the things of the SPIRIT. In that day, he said you will know that I AM IN THE FATHER, and YOU ARE IN ME, and I AM IN YOU. Here is the truth about GOD, which brings together into ONE both GOD AND MAN. Don't try with the Carnal Mind to fully understand it, just believe what He said, for this is the TRUTH.
Jesus said, "If I go away, I will come again". and this he did on the day of Pentecost. But this time he did not come in HUMAN FORM but in the true essence of His being, which is SPIRIT. In this form he came not to simply be WITH US but now to DWELL IN US even as he said. (Jn 14:17) This is the indwelling CHRIST the Son of the living God. This is not ONE THIRD of GOD as traditional theology suggests BUT this IS GOD who is SPIRIT. Paul says, "If we are joined unto the LORD we are ONE SPIRIT. (1 Cor 6:17).
This is how He could Manifest Himself to the disciples but not to the world, and so it is today. HE HAS COME BACK as He promised. If this is not so, beloved, we are then without hope. For the Spirit of God dwelling within, is the "ERNEST", or down payment on our full inheritance, which is yet to come.
Let us look at another Scripture, which many use to teach the idea of His "SECOND" Coming. Heb 9:28, "Unto them that look for Him shall He appear THE SECOND TIME without sin unto Salvation. Here we need to go back and read from verse 24, and we find recorded here Two Comings of Christ. But neither of them equate with His so-called "FIRST" coming or His "SECOND" coming.
The apostle here is contrasting TWO appearings, so that one is FIRST as to order and the other is SECOND as to order. The subject is the atonement. Now the atonement was not accomplished for Israel at the Brazen Altar. It could not be effective until the animal died and the blood had been collected by the High Priest and was carried into the Most Holy Place, where it was presented before God. Only then when the High Priest came out to the people was atonement complete and thus they could rejoice.
It is exactly the same for us today. Atonement was made at Calvary, but our High Priest Jesus Christ, had to take His own blood into the Presence of God for us. In our case this has nothing to do with and TEMPLE in Jerusalem, but the MOST HOLY PLACE that IS WITHIN US. It is here in the very midst of our being that the "BLOOD" of Christ, (which is His consciousness) is brought, thus removing from us all traces of SIN CONSCIOUSNESS, which the Old Testament sacrifices could not do.
Therefore we have the "FIRST" appearing, which was IN THE PRESENCE OF GOD FOR US. In verse 28 we have another appearing which is in connection with our SALVATION. Christ was once offered to bear the sin of many (referring to verse 24 & 26). But - NOW He appears the SECOND TIME - TO THOSE WHO LOOK FOR HIM. FIRST appearing as High Priest in God's Presence FOR US - then his SECOND appearing is UNTO US and takes place WITHIN, making us partakers of the divine nature and of his glory.
The second word "APPEAR" is different in the Greek and is correctly translated in other places as "WAS SEEN" (I Cor 15:5-8). {op-tan'-om-ahee} meaning to appear or to show (one's) self This appearing of Christ is in fact a REVELATION of HIMSELF DWELLING WITHIN US. But the Scripture says this is only for those who LOOK FOR HIM. So if most Christians are looking up into the SKY for Him it is obvious they will never see Him, because He dwells WITHIN which is now the MOST HOLY PLACE.
If you believe Christ is your High Priest and He pleads His precious blood before God for you - YOU WILL LOOK FOR HIM to complete the work of ATONEMENT by COMING TO YOU. Because your body is His Temple, you will LOOK FOR HIM and- EXPECT HIM to bring that blood into His Temple and sprinkle it in the Most Holy Place of your inner most being, confirming ATONEMENT and the Removal of our Sin-consciousness. Again we have been robbed of these truths because the only coming of Christ we know is at the end of the age.
In Rev 2 and 3 we have recorded a series of comings of Christ to the church down through the ages. For to each Church He promises He WILL COME and do certain things. Sometimes it is a visit in Judgment, and sometimes He supplies that which is needed in difficult times. So also TO YOU Beloved, He comes many times. The problem is we don't always recognize Him.
The Pharisees in Jesus' day knew the Messiah was to come - they had Daniel's prophecy and knew the time He was to come, but when He came they did not recognize Him. They expected a Liberator to destroy the Roman Yoke, not a babe in Bethlehem - so they missed Him. He came unto His own but HIS OWN received Him Not. What a sad commentary on God's people today, who have been the subject of His Visitations, but so many did not recognize Him, so for them He has not been. However they still cry Maranatha - and look for the coming at the end of the age not knowing HE WANTS TO COME TO YOU NOW to meet your needs, to strengthen you, to correct you, to comfort you. His promise is, "I WILL COME AGAIN TO YOU, and receive YOU unto MYSELF, that where I am, there shall you be also". Heaven is to be a PRESENT REALITY, not at the end of the age. Paul declares, "We have been made to sit together with Him in Heavenly Places" (Eph 2:6).
Search the Scriptures concerning His comings, and see how many times they have a personal present application to you, so that TODAY is the day of SALVATION, and not just the end of the age.
The challenge of His Coming to you is emphatically declared in Rev 3:20, "Behold I stand at the door and knock: if any man hear My voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and sup with him and he with Me." Here the heart of the Father is declared, as desiring fellowship with us. The last Church mentioned, is that of Laodicea, who is neither cold nor hot, and are said to be wretched, miserable, poor, blind and naked. There is little for the Lord to enjoy there.
His invitation in this end of the age is to "ANY MAN", who will hear My voice and open the door. Beloved, He Comes to you today, bringing the supply of your every need. What is the cry of your heart today? He will be to you today, Wisdom, Righteousness, Sanctification and Redemption and make these a present reality in your life. Our need is for Him to come to us today, for this is our time of need. How sad it would be, if we had to wait to the end of this age for Him to Come when THIS IS THE DAY OF SALVATION. He WILL come at the end of the age, in a special manifestation of His Glory, but today He promises to come to us, and to sup with us, and we with Him. This is the Truth of His Coming.
HIS appearing WITHIN
The Apostle Paul wrote to the saints concerning the COMING of Christ saying :- "Set your affections on things ABOVE (the natural realm) and not on things that are on the earth. FOR YE ARE DEAD in relation to natural earthly things, and your LIFE IS HID (concealed and locked together) WITH CHRIST IN GOD having its consciousness now in the realm of Spirit. So that when CHRIST WHO IS OUR LIFE shall appear, we shall appear with HIM IN GLORY." Col 3:2-4.
Again we must emphasize that this reference to the APPEARING or COMING of Christ is not a reference to what has been termed the "Second Coming." This concerns a very personal and vital Coming or rather an Unveiling of CHRIST to us personally. As we look at the scripture we have quoted notice the word "affections" by which we are instructed to focus on the things of the Spirit. This word in the Greek is phroneo {fron-eh'-o} and means to have understanding, or be wise about one’s SELF. So when we come to the word "APPEAR" concerning CHRIST WHO IS OUR LIFE, it does not simply mean He is Coming. This word is very similar to the word "affections."
This is the Greek word phaneroo {fan-er-o'-o} which means to make manifest or visible or to make known what has been hidden or unknown. So once again we notice that the translators were not very careful in their choice of words. This appearing of Christ is for the distinct purpose of revealing to us the reality of our being which is CHRIST. In order for us to discover our true LIFE or identity, Christ Himself comes to us individually and personally, unveiling Himself within our very SPIRIT. This experience takes place within us and is unseen by everyone else.
Of all the "Comings" of Christ referred to in the scriptures, this one is most important. If we continue to suggest that we must wait until the end of the age before Christ can come, then of course there is nothing for the "NOW" in our experience. Let us bear in mind also that the traditional view of the Coming of Christ is simply to whisk us away off the earth to some ethereal "heaven." This really accomplishes nothing in terms of our testimony on this earth.
NO beloved, Christ is coming to his people TODAY manifesting HIMSELF within us, through an unveiling that will lift us out of the mortal concept of our humanity, and revealing the REALITY OF OUR BEING to be WHAT HE IS. There are many scriptures that relate to this experience. David said, "I will behold thy face in righteousness, and I shall be satisfied when I awake, WITH THY LIKENESS." Psalm 17:15. He is not speaking about death here in the physical sense, but about the "sleep" of death, which has overtaken us all, from which Christ is come to wake us.
The Apostle John tells us, "Beloved NOW are we the Sons of God, and it doth not yet APPEAR what we shall be, but we know that WHEN HE SHALL APPEAR we shall be LIKE HIM, for we shall SEE HIM AS HE IS." 1 Jn 3:2. Again this is not speaking of some "rapture" lifting us up into the sky where the change will have no effect on the people of the earth, but Christ unveiling HIMSELF within us, which will cause us to be, WHAT HE IS NOW. When Jesus Christ walked on this earth people only saw A MAN. When he asked the disciples who they thought him to be, Peter said, "Thou art the CHRIST the SON of the living God." Peter could only know this because the Father revealed it unto him.
This coming of Christ to us will be no different, for outwardly we will still have the FORM of MAN, but within will dwell CHRIST THE SON OF THE LIVING GOD. That is why Jesus said the things I do shall ye do also, and greater things shall ye do because I go to my Father.
THE UNVEILING
Three of the disciples were allowed to witness an Unveiling of the Christ. Scripture says He took them up into a high mountain. The mountain does not suggest physical elevation to the Spiritual mind, but represents a higher realm than that of flesh and blood, this being the Spirit realm. It was in that atmosphere of the Spirit, that they saw Christ as they had never seen him before, even though they had seen Him with their natural eyes, and had been with him for a long time. The REALITY of CHRIST cannot be realized by these natural eyes, in fact none of the five natural senses by which we live our lives, are capable of knowing Christ.
But with their Spiritual senses energized they beheld the GLORY of CHRIST. This was Jesus Christ, as he was never seen before by mortal man. His face shone as the sun, and his covering was radiating light, and into that incredible scene two others appeared who once was a part of mortal humanity. They were Moses and Elias. As they watched, a BRIGHT CLOUD over-shadowed them and a VOICE out of the cloud said, "This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased, hear ye him."
To these three disciples this was the UNVEILING OF CHRIST right before their SPIRITUAL EYES. However it is most important to notice that this revelation included Moses and Elijah standing IN THE SAME GLORY AS JESUS! Can it be that ON THIS EARTH, TODAY, that we can actually witness the unveiling of Christ within our own being, and standing in that glory we can behold OURSELVES. This is exactly what the Apostle Paul says,
"When Christ who is our life shall appear within us, revealing His intrinsic glory, WE SHALL ALSO APPEAR WITH HIM IN THAT SAME GLORY." Col.3:4.
Those who continue to WAIT for a MAN to come from the sky to lift us off this earth and take us to some imaginary heaven, have missed the greatest "COMING," or rather APPEARING of Christ any man has ever seen. However this unveiling of Christ within us is individual and personal, as we seek to KNOW even as we are KNOWN of the Lord. Notice only three of the twelve disciples were taken at that time up into the mountain to witness the transfiguration.
Speaking much later, Peter testified that they had not followed cunningly devised fables when we made known unto you the power AND coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of his majesty.
Let me ask you a question, "Have you seen what those three disciples saw that day on the Mount, or have you only seen Jesus Christ the MAN who walked the streets of Jerusalem?" Don’t wait until the end of the age for something that has no bearing on your testimony NOW to the world. Let us all earnestly ask him to reveal himself to us now in all his glory, in the secret chambers of our heart. Then when we SEE HIM…..we shall be like HIM.
Des Walter

1 comment:

Károly Domonyi said...

Hi,

Your site is one of my favorites seen around blog explosion. Keep up the good work.
I enjoy reading your blog. It is great to find someone who can find the fun things in life!

I wish you all the best in all years.

Please take a look at my websites and increase your page rank, traffic as well. I look forward to developing a friendship and networking with you. Let me know if there is something I can do to assist you with your business.

With Regards,

Karoly Domonyi
http://www.Aries.hu
http://www.ariestrade.com
http://www.AddProductFree.com
http://www.AddWebSiteFree.com