Please note that all scripture references are linked to The WWW Bible Gateway. Therefore, if you click on a scripture reference, it may take a few moments for it to load. Once you are finished reading the scripture reference, click on "back" on your browser to return to this article. 17 . . . 18 . . . 19 . . . 20. Ready or not, here I come! For most of us, this will bring to mind the childhood game of hide and seek.
Now, think about this:
100 . . . 200 . . . 300 . . . 400 . . . 500 . . . 600 . . . 700 . . . 800 . . . 900 . . . 1000 . . . 1100 . . . 1200 . . . 1300 . . . 1400 . . . 1500 . . . 1600 . . . 1700 . . . 1800 . . . 1900 . . . 1995 . . . 1996 . . . 1997 . . . 1998 . . . 1999 . . . ???? . . .Ready or not, here I come!
While Jesus was here in human form on earth, He promised that He would return again (
Matthew 24:30; Mark 13:26; Luke 12:40; Luke 21:27; John 14:1-4; John 21:22-23). Also, Jesus said the same thing in the revelation which the apostle John received ( Revelation 3:11; Revelation 22:7; Revelation 22:20). Not only did Jesus Himself speak these all important words of assurance that He will be returning, but many others in the Bible did as well ( Daniel 7:13-14; Malachi 3:2; Acts 1:10-11; 1 Thessalonians 1:10; 1 Timothy 6:12-16; Hebrews 9:27-28; James 5:7-8; 1 John 2:28; Revelation 1:7; Revelation 19:11-16). And since then, God has been counting the days and years. Someday, it will be just the right time, and Jesus will, in effect, say, "Ready or not, here I come!" Or, because the Bible tells us that only God the Father knows the day and hour of Jesus' return ( Matthew 24:36; Mark 13:32), it will actually be more like God saying, "Ready or not, I'm sending my Son back!" But you get the picture, anyway, right?
Now, the most important thing to remember about Jesus coming again is that it is not a game. It is real. If you are not ready when He returns, there will never be another chance to get ready--ever. Once Jesus returns, we will all (dead or alive) face the judgment (
John 5:28-30). If you are ready, you will receive the reward of eternal life ( Hebrews 9:27-28). If you are not ready, then you will be condemned to eternal punishment in Hell for all of eternity ( Matthew 25:31-33; Matthew 25:46). And there are probably no words to adequately describe how horrible it will be for those who are not ready. Jesus gives us a brief description of the torment those who are not ready will face. Do the words "cut him to pieces" ( Matthew 24:51), "weeping and gnashing of teeth" ( Matthew 24:51; Matthew 25:30), and "throw that worthless servant outside, into the darkness" ( Matthew 25:30) mean anything to you? How about this description: "Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels." ( Matthew 25:41)? Or this one: "they will go away to eternal punishment" ( Matthew 25:46)? Those are all words spoken by Jesus himself about just what will happen to those who are not ready when He returns. Jesus also told several parables to help us understand about being ready for his return. A few are: (1) thefaithful and wise servant and the wicked servant ( Matthew 24:45-51); (2) theten virgins ( Matthew 25:1-13); (3) thetalents ( Matthew 25:14-30; Luke 19:12-27); (4) thesheep and goats ( Matthew 25:31-46). Please take the time to read these very important teachings of Jesus.
Just what does it mean to be ready for Jesus' return? You must be sure that you are a true child of God. This means you must be born again. To be born again, the Bible tells us to do all of the following:
(1) hearthe Gospel ( John 5:24; Acts 15:7; Romans 10:17; Revelation 3:20); (2) believethe Gospel ( Mark 16:16; John 3:16-18; John 8:24; John 11:25-26; John 20:31; Acts 16:31; Romans 10:9-10; Hebrews 11:6; 1 Peter 1:8-9); (3) repentof our sins ( Luke 13:3-5; Acts 2:38; Acts 17:30; 2 Corinthians 7:10; 2 Peter 3:9); (4) confessin front of other people that Jesus is our Lord and Savior ( Matthew 10:32; Romans 10:9-10; 2 Timothy 2:19; 1 John 1:9); (5) beimmersed in baptism for the forgiveness of our sins and to receive the gift of the Holy Spirit ( Matthew 28:19-20; Mark 16:16; Acts 2:38; Romans 6:3-4; 1 Peter 3:21); and (6) standfirm and live a faithful Christian life to the end ( Matthew 10:22; Matthew 24:13; Mark 13:13; Luke 21:19; 1 Timothy 4:16; Hebrews 10:36; James 1:12).
So the question is this: Are you ready? If you are not ready, please get ready now. Jesus is coming back again someday (maybe a lot sooner than you might think)
. . . whetheryou are ready or not.
Copyright © 1998 Kimberly B. Southall. All rights reserved.