Re­turn of the King

The Covington News - - Religion - JA­SON DEES

Have you ever heard some­one say, “They love each other like broth­ers?” That usu­ally means that the peo­ple be­ing dis­cussed have their agree­ments and dis­agree­ments, but they al­ways stick to­gether in the hard times. Well, hav­ing four boys in our house, I can tell you that broth­ers don’t al­ways get along, but when they do, it’s won­der­ful. And you can bet that when some­thing hap­pens to one, they all come to the res­cue. I have an older brother and sis­ter, and re­cently my sis­ter sent me a framed pic­ture of “then” and “now” — an im­age from when we were very young along with an im­age of a re­cent get-to­gether. When we were young, we would play to­gether, and al­though she was a lit­tle older than I was, she would help me with things when I needed help. Ev­ery once in a while…OK, fairly of­ten, we would get on each other’s nerves and have to spend some time apart, but she was al­ways there to stand up for me in time of trou­ble. And I re­mem­ber on more than one oc­ca­sion of our dis­agree­ments, mom would say, “Play nice” — mean­ing we had bet­ter get along or there would be un­for­tu­nate parental in­ter­ven­tion.

Some­times, even in our Chris­tian fam­ily, we don’t al­ways see eye to eye with oth­ers. Some­times we have trou­ble “play­ing nice” with oth­ers. Peo­ple from dif­fer­ent de­nom­i­na­tions may have some be­liefs that dif­fer from ours, and some­times we tell jokes or rib oth­ers about who’s wrong and who’s right. But when we stand to­gether, even agree­ing to dis­agree about the less im­por­tant things, we can get along with each other. In our community, we may strug­gle with ra­cial or eco­nomic or po­lit­i­cal dif­fer­ences. I am cer­tain that in the na­tion of Is­rael from the days of the Psalmist, not ev­ery­one agreed with ev­ery­one else. In fact, show me even a hand­ful of peo­ple who al­ways agree on ev­ery­thing, and I will show you a great deal of com­pro­mise. Some­times, we have to just put aside our dif­fer­ences and stand to­gether as broth­ers and sis­ters. We can’t spell “community” with­out the word “unity.” How won­der­ful it is when we can all get to­gether, for­giv­ing each other for our short­com­ings and lov­ing each other through our dif­fi­cul­ties.

On Satur­day, Aug. 11, we will have an op­por­tu­nity to “play nice” with oth­ers in the community as we come to­gether to pray to­gether for one of our ma­jor com­mon con­cerns — the new school year. Each of us is touched in some way by the school sys­tems, pub­lic or pri­vate, and each of us can pray for those who help shape the lives of so many chil­dren and youth as well as for the students them­selves. As we come to­gether at 7 p.m. on the square, let’s re­mem­ber to “play nice” with each other as we gather to­gether to pray for each other. This will be a great op­por­tu­nity to show that we do have “unity” in our community.

Where do we need to ac­cept those who don’t nec­es­sar­ily agree with us? Where can we ask God to help us to have unity in our community?

There is a day that is com­ing that swells great joy in the hearts of mil­lions. A day when bro­ken hearts will be mended, a day when loved ones will be re­united, and a day when hopes will be re­al­ized. This is a day that I have been long­ing for since I was a child, and a day that mil­lions more have longed for with an ea­ger­ness that is stronger than that of a bride await­ing her groom. What is this day you may be think­ing? I am talk­ing about the day when the King of the uni­verse, the one who has all author­ity in heaven, and on earth, and un­der the earth re­turns. I am talk­ing about the sec­ond com­ing of Je­sus Christ, the day when Je­sus will re­turn to earth to rule and to reign. He will bring jus­tice to the wicked and peace to the right­eous. It will be a great re­turn of the King.

You can learn a lot about your­self, by con­sid­er­ing what comes to your mind when you think of this day. As men­tioned above, for many of you think­ing about the re­turn of the King brings great joy and peace to mind. For you, this is the day, more than any other that you look for­ward to. But for many oth­ers of you, this day strikes a deep ter­ror in your heart. When Christ re­turns there is a very stark dif­fer­ence be­tween those who are with him and those who are against him. One of the most vivid pas­sages of scrip­ture comes in Reve­la­tion 19:1116 when the re­turn of Christ is de­scribed:

Then I saw heaven opened, and be­hold, a white horse! The one sit­ting on it is called Faith­ful and True, and in right­eous­ness he judges and makes war. His eyes are his head are many di­adems, and he has a name writ­ten that no one knows but him­self. He is clothed in a robe dipped in blood, and the name by which he is called is the word of God. And the armies of heaven, ar­rayed were fol­low­ing him on white horses. From his mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations, and he will rule them with a rod of iron. He will tread the wine­press of the fury of the wrath of God the Almighty. On his robe and on his thigh he has a name writ­ten, King of kings and Lord of lords.

On which side of Christ will you be on when the King re­turns?

If you are in­ter­ested in learn­ing more about the re­turn of Christ, and what will hap­pen in the end of time come to First Bap­tist be­gin­ning Wed­nes­day night Aug. 8 at 6 p.m. for a 17-week study of the book of Reve­la­tion called “Re­turn of the King.”

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