Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Second Coming

"Cornelius Plantinga says in his book Engaging God's World that the second coming is good news for people whose lives are filled with bad news. If you are a slave in Pharoah's Egypt or in the southern United States in the early 19th century, or if you are an Israelite exiled in Babylon, or a Kosovar exiled in Albania, if you are a women in a culture where when your husband is mad at you he can lock you in a closet or call up his buddies and threaten to have them rape you, if you are a Christian in sub-Saharan Africa today where AIDS is devastating whole populations, you don't yawn when someone mentions the return of Jesus. The coming of the kingdom depends on the coming of the King, and the coming of the King means justice will at last fill the earth.

What that means, Plantinga says, is that "Passionate Christians want the return of the Lord. And, let me add, so do compassionate ones." Let's just think this out. If you long for Christ's appearing, then you long for the conditions that will accompany that appearing. What are the two basic things that will happen when he comes back? He will be known - every eye will see him, all will know his truth - and it will be the end of death, disease, injustice, suffering, hunger. Therefore, if you care about the second coming, Plantinga says that it makes you passionate and compassionate to do the same two things. you want everyone to know him, and you also want to see the end of suffering and disease and injustice. And, as a result, he is saying anyone who longs for the appearing of Jesus is eager to do good - eager to call people to believe, and eager to love and sacrificially serve everybody, whether they believe or not. That is what makes you compassionate and passionate."
Tim Keller

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