THE COMING OF JESUS
Hebrews 9: 24-28
By Henry Jaegers
It’s Christmas time! Most people view this time of year with joy and excitement but there are others who do not have that privilege. They have no family and friends with whom to share this joy. They are separated by distance from their families, they have no friends, and they are without employment. This is especially true this year as many are experiencing Christmas depression. I have experienced this many times in the past so I understand the loneliness that accompanies this. If it were not for friends who cared it could have been a discouraging time. During one of these times while I was feeling sorry for myself, I took comfort in the song by Longfellow which said “And in despair I bowed my head; there is no peace on earth I said, for hate is strong and mocks the song, of peace on earth good will to men” But there is a greater message for all at Christmas time. It is not found in the gospels but is hidden away in the book of Hebrews where we might not expect to find the message of the advent season. The message of Christmas is the message concerning the coming of Jesus. Let’s examine these verses in Hebrews 9: 24-28’
“For Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true; but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us: Nor yet that He should offer himself often as the high priest entered the holy place every year with blood of others; For then must he often have suffered since the foundation of the world; but now once in the end of the world hath He appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself. And as it is appointed unto man once to die and after that the judgment: So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many and unto them that look for Him shall He appear the second time without sin unto salvation.”
The verse suggests three important events concerning the advent of Jesus.
I. HE IS COMING= THE PREPARATION
The Old testament foretells of a future Messiah.. The purpose is to look forward. There are over fifty passage that refer to Jesus the Messiah and His future coming but for our purposes we will look at eight briefly
In Genesis 3:15 we find the first and classic identification of His being born of a woman. There has been only one “Seed of the woman that being Jesus the virgin born son of Mary. His death on the cross and future dominance over Satan is also alluded to.
Second in Genesis 22: 18 He is seen as the seed of Abraham who would become a great blessing.
Third He is seen in Genesis 28:14 as arising out from the seed of Jacob. This speaks of His Jewish origins.
Fourth In Genesis 49:10 He will come specifically out of the tribe of Judah (The tribe from which kings come forth)
Fifth In Deuteronomy 18:18 He will be a prophet like Moses; a leader; a deliverer and a savior.
Sixth In Isaiah 7:14 He will be born of a virgin and be called Immanuel (Meaning God is with us)
Eighth In Micah 5:2 we are told that the everlasting Savior will be born in an insignificant village called Bethlehem
Eighth In Isaiah chapter 53 there are many passages referring to His suffering and ministry.
All of these are meant to prepare the world for His future coming in His earthly ministry. You may wonder why I chose only eight.. The following illustration will answer that question.
I am not a mathematician and I cannot verify the accuracy of this but here is what I have read by someone who has supposedly done the math
The possibility of anyone fulfilling just eight of these prophecies would be one chance in 100 million. That boils down to this. If we were to cover the state of Texas in silver dollars, one foot n depth and mark one of those coins. Next if we were e to take a blind man and give him one opportunity .the chances of one man fulfilling eight of those prophecies would be like the blind man finding that marked coin the first try Jesus has done all of that and more and that is the wonder of the Old Testament prophecies. Jesus is coming and these prophecies prepare His People for His arrival
II. HE HAS COME= THE REALIZATION.
As we consider the narrative concerning the arrival of Jesus the Son of God, we discover that all that the prophets have spoken have been fulfilled Not only have the prophecies been fulfilled but all of the ceremonial laws have found their completion on the person of Christ. Consider once again the text that we are studying. Notice these words in particular: “But now, once in the end of the world has He appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself” That was His purpose for coming.
Jesus has come and it is at Christmas time that we celebrate the purpose for His coming. He did not come as a Babe in a manger. That was His beginning but what He grew up to be and what He became is our focus How should that affect me?. The message of Christmas is the Greatest story ever told. about the greatest person who ever lived and He offers to us the greatest opportunity ever made. It is the opportunity to receive eternal life as a free gift. It is a gift offered from the loving heart of God and all that we have to do is receive it by faith. The message continues:
II. HE IS COMING AGAIN= THE ANTICIPATION.
We close this message with a final appeal. Jesus is coming again. “And unto those who look for Him shall He appear th second time without sin unto salvation. First this speaks of the completeness of His coming. He is not coming to die for sin as He did the first time “All Hs work has ended, joyfully we sing, Jesus has ascended Glory to our king. (Written by Francis Havergale. “Golden harps are sounding”) Second, this verse speaks of our responsibility. “Unto them that look for Him”’ These words mean that our lives are daily focused on His any moment return and our determination to be faithful until that day comes.
Have you understood the focus of these verses? How well have you done in your preparation for His coming? Will you welcome His appearing knowing that you have made being faithful to Him as your goal, or will your present lifestyle cause you to be ashamed when He comes