The return of Jesus is not something that impinges on our thinking very much these days. There have been times in Church history when it has been a major topic of conversation and given rise to countless books. We are much more inclined these days to get on with the job of living the Christian life and serving the needs of hurting people. The New Testament however is full of references to Jesus’ return and the end of the ages. Time, as we measure and experience it, is not unlimited. We talk of the billions of years since the Big Bang set space and time in motion, and of an ever expanding universe, but in the beginning … GOD. He holds it, and its destiny, in his hands and he has decreed an end point when there will be a new creation and Jesus returns to rule and reign over its perfection.
Two strands of thought run together to make this an essential element in our faith. The first is that the return of Jesus will bring an end to sin, violence, pain, suffering and sadness. The new creation, to which we already belong through faith, will be one of beauty, wholeness and delight. This sustains and strengthens us through times of difficulty. The second strand is that we are propelled in the here and now towards living lives that are worthy of Jesus.