By Alan Dean
I’m sure many people ask this question as the pandemic has taken its toll, as mass shootings and racial violence take place, and as morals drop to an all-time low in our country. Does Jesus care what’s taking place? Why doesn’t He come again and put a halt to it all?
Well, I’ll assure you that Jesus does care and is saddened by it all. Our God is a God of love and righteousness. He draws near to every person and family hurt by the sin and suffering in our world. Jesus does promise to come again and take His people home (John 14:1-3).
But when will Jesus come? He says in Matthew 24:14 that when this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness to all nations, then shall the end come (the 2nd coming of Jesus). Not until every person has had an opportunity to respond to the gospel call will Jesus come again. God is not willing that any should perish (Hebrews 3:9). Thankfully, the gospel is being preached today around the world by satellite, the internet, cell phones, and missionaries. Jesus is overseeing this massive work.
At the same time the world continues to get worse. Paul writes to Timothy what God has shown about the last days in 2 Timothy 3:1-5. It describes the sins of our world pretty accurately. Jesus is allowing sin to run its natural course to show the universe its terrible results. Therefore, sin will never rise again (Nahum 1:9).
Jesus also works today to prepare His people for His coming. As our High Priest in heaven, Jesus is our Advocate, interceding for us, forgiving our sins, and giving us power for victory over sin. As we cooperate with the Holy Spirit in this preparation, Jesus places His robe of righteousness over us. God then looks upon us as holy and faithful. Ready for heaven!
We don’t know the time when the gospel work will be completed or when His people are prepared, but signs given in Matthew 24 are fast fulfilling. Luke 21:25-28 tells us we should look up heavenward, “for our redemption draweth nigh.” And Paul writes in Titus 2:14 that we are to be “looking forward for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ.”