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Tag Archives: end of the age

The Return of Christ – Asking the Right Question

Question MarkIn my last post I started a series on the Return of Christ. I reviewed what the disciples had learned from Jesus up to this point.

Jesus left the temple and was walking away when his disciples came up to him to call attention to the buildings. “Do you see all these things?” he asked. “I tell you the truth, not one stone here will be left on another; every one will be thrown down.”
Matthew 24:1-2

The disciples are just like many of us – impressed by the massive structures man has built. It’s easy to look at the outside of things. We get the impression that the grander the work, the closer to God the ministry is. This is far from the case sometimes.

This is what Jesus was trying to relate to His disciples. They thought that these impressive structures were a sign of God’s favor. That may have been the case at one time.

At this time, because of the nation of Israel’s rejection of the Messiah, they were opening themselves up to destructive forces that would someday level these incredible buildings.

As Jesus was sitting on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to him privately. “Tell us,” they said, “when will this happen, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?”
Matthew 24:3

This question shows us incredible insight into the disciples’ thinking process. They liked to get Jesus alone when there were no crowds around to interrupt. That’s when they learned the most. Now, they needed some answers.

Many teachers, when they deal with this verse, explain that the disciples didn’t know what they were saying because they were clearly asking three different questions in one. That statement shows a lack of understanding about what Christ had already taught His disciples. Actually the disciples knew exactly what they were asking.

Throughout Jesus’ ministry He spoke of the end of the age when the righteous would rise to receive their reward. He also talked about the day of His coming, the Day of Christ, when He would reveal Himself to the nations.

The problem the disciples had was that the Lord never related these two events to each other. Were they two different events, or do they happen simultaneously?

To top it all off, now Jesus is talking about the temple being destroyed – something He had never mentioned before – and they wanted to know how it all fit together. They knew exactly what they were asking.

“Lord, You’ve told us about the resurrection. You’ve told us about Your coming, and now You’re telling us about the destruction of Jerusalem. Please, Lord, tie it all together for us. How will we know when these things are about to happen?”

One thing’s for sure – I’m glad they asked. After studying Christ’s teachings, I had the exact same question. I’m even more grateful that Jesus answered the question – in detail.

It’s the Lord’s answers that I will be posting about in this series.

Question: What would you have asked Jesus concerning His return?

© Nick Zaccardi 2014

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Posted by on August 20, 2014 in Ministry, Return of Christ

 

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The Last Days – Separating the Fish

SONY DSCThis will be my last post in my series about the Last Day’s weeding that the Lord will perform in His Kingdom.  Jesus went on to underscore this message by telling another parable.

“Once again the kingdom of heaven is like a net that was let down into a lake and caught all kinds of fish.  When it was full, the fishermen pulled it up on shore.  Then they sat down and collected the good fish in baskets, but threw the bad away.  This is how it will be at the end of the age.  The angels will come and separate the wicked from the righteous and throw them into the fiery furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”
Matthew 13:47-50

The Lord tells us that the kingdom is like a net let down into a lake.  This net has been dredging the lake for 2000 years now.  It has caught a variety of fish.  Some of the fish are good and some are bad.

There are people who claim to be Christians yet know nothing of the Biblical means of salvation.  They’re relying on their own good works or their church membership instead of the blood of the crucified, buried, and risen Lord.

There are many that have heard and rejected the Good News because they like their own version better.  They say things like, “It doesn’t matter what you believe as long as you believe in something.”  The church universal is full of good fish and bad fish.

So what’s new about that?  It’s been like this for hundreds of years.  It will not go on like this forever.  God is starting a separation process.

When the net is full, or literally, complete and finished, something new is going to happen.  Angels are going to be dispatched to separate out of the kingdom of God those who really don’t want to be there on God’s terms.  The word separate means to set off by a boundary.

In the last days God is going to perform a supernatural work that makes a clear distinction between His people and the world.  Right now the church and the world look very much alike.  Divorce, abuse, crime, and substance abuse levels are almost equal.

The end of the age is the time set by the Lord to cleanse His Temple.  He’s going to show that there’s a difference between His kingdom and the world.  It will soon become impossible to straddle the fence.

If you’re wise, you’ll make your decision now to serve Christ wholeheartedly.  Don’t wait until the weeding forces you to make up your mind.  Don’t miss out on a single thing that the Lord has planned for you.

We live in exciting times.  If you go all out for the Lord, then I can promise you that you’ll be a part of the greatest adventure the world has ever known.

Question: How different should we be from the world?

© Nick Zaccardi 2013

 
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Posted by on January 18, 2013 in Encouragement, Return of Christ, The Church

 

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The Last Days – Weeding the Kingdom

WeedingI have been posting about Jesus’ parable found in Matthew 13:24-41.  Did you know that very soon a weeding is going to take place in the body of Christ?  Actually, I believe that it may already have begun.

In the parable, Jesus said that there were going to be elements of the enemy’s kingdom mixed in with His sons and daughters.  In the parable the angels inquire, “Sir, didn’t You sow good seed into Your field?  Where did all these evil ones come from?”

Jesus explains that it was the work of the Devil.

The angels then ask Him, “Do you want us to go pull them up?”

“No”, He answers, “because while you’re pulling up the evil ones you may root up, hurt, or destroy My sons and daughters.  Let both groups grow together until the end of the age.  At that time I’ll tell the angels, first collect the sons of the evil one, tie them up and burn them.  Then, gather My people and bring them into My dwelling place.”

Here you can see that Christ is not so much concerned with the weeds that are way out on the fringes.  It’s the weeds that are mixed up with His kingdom that He wants to do something about.  As we approach the end of the age, there’s going to be a time when God starts weeding.

I’ve seen some things happen in my lifetime that were unheard of in the past.  Ministries that we thought were incredible seem to have gotten plucked up because there were some things that were wrong going on below the surface.  God is exposing sin and saying, “I want that out of My kingdom.”

I believe that as we get closer to the end of the age, we’re going to see more and more of God’s weeding going on.  That’s what Jesus wanted to communicate to His disciples.  Don’t expect to have a kingdom that’s perfect right from the start.

Instead, He warned them that on earth there was going to be people with impure motives in His kingdom.  There are going to be people among us that are not really living for Christ.  They may claim to be Christians, but they’re poisonous.  In my last post I talked about the specifics of that poison.

As we approach the end of the age, we’re going to see a new move of the Spirit of God as He weeds His kingdom.  I believe that very soon, a separation is going to take place.  Just as Jesus said, the Son of Man is going to send out His angels to expose, uproot, and remove those things that are not a part of His plan for the church.  We, as believers, must be prepared for this to occur by realizing that the hand of God is in it.

Question: Do you see this weeding process as already starting?

© Nick Zaccardi 2013

 
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Posted by on January 14, 2013 in Return of Christ, The Church

 

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