Dear Friends,

This week at Conner Prairie we begin an 8-week message series entitled END OF DAYS:  THE “SO WHAT?” OF THE RAPTURE, TRIBULATION, AND MILLENNIUM.  I hope you will join us for this journey.  I will be providing extensive notes and outlines of the relevant Scriptures speaking of the End Times.

For almost 2,000 years Christians have been waiting for the return of Jesus.  Is He still coming or are we clinging to a false hope?  What signs might indicate that His return is near?  What are the major events of the End of Days?  How are the End Times relevant to our lives here and now?  These are just some of the questions I will be attempting to answer in this series.

One of the essentials of our faith is that Jesus is coming back again.  All Christian denominations affirm this, but how they view the specific events of His return differs widely.  I personally hold that the Scriptures teach the Premillennial return of Jesus to the earth to reign as King of kings on David’s throne in Jerusalem. This understanding comes from the Literal, Grammatical, Historical Method of Interpretation that I apply to the Scriptures.

BUT WHY DOES THE RETURN OF JESUS MATTER TO US?

  1. THE RETURN OF JESUS OFFERS COMFORT.

1 Thessalonians 4:16–18 (NLT) For the Lord himself will come down from heaven with a commanding shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet call of God. First, the believers who have died will rise from their graves.  Then, together with them, we who are still alive and remain on the earth will be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. Then we will be with the Lord forever.  So encourage each other with these words.

  1. THE RETURN OF JESUS GIVES US HOPE.

Titus 2:13 (NKJV) looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ

  1. THE RETURN OF JESUS GIVES US PATIENT COURAGE.

James 5:7–8 (NLT) Dear brothers and sisters, be patient as you wait for the Lord’s return. Consider the farmers who patiently wait for the rains in the fall and in the spring. They eagerly look for the valuable harvest to ripen.  You, too, must be patient. Take courage, for the coming of the Lord is near.

  1. THE RETURN OF JESUS PROMOTES RIGHTEOUS LIVING.

1 John 3:2–3 (NLT) Dear friends, we are already God’s children, but he has not yet shown us what we will be like when Christ appears. But we do know that we will be like him, for we will see him as he really is.  And all who have this eager expectation will keep themselves pure, just as he is pure.

  1. THE RETURN OF JESUS BRINGS OUR REWARDS.

Revelation 22:12 (NLT) “Look, I am coming soon, bringing my reward with me to repay all people according to their deeds.”

  1. THE RETURN OF JESUS PROVIDES URGENCY IN WITNESSING TO OUR LOST LOVED ONES AND FRIENDS.

Acts 1:7–8 (NLT) He replied, “The Father alone has the authority to set those dates and times, and they are not for you to know.  But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere—in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”

  1. THE RETURN OF JESUS GIVES US PERSPECTIVE IN THIS LIFE.

1 Peter 1:13b, 17b (NLT)  Put all your hope in the gracious salvation that will come to you when Jesus Christ is revealed to the world…So you must live in reverent fear of him during your time here as “temporary residents.”

I hope you will journey with us as we discover the events of the End of Days and develop the “So What?” of His soon return!

Onward expectantly,

Pastor Gary