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"Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path." --- Psalm 119:105

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2 THESSALONIANS

The Three Comings of Jesus
The Bible clearly speaks about three comings of Jesus. We must keep these three comings in mind and know how they relate to one another.
 
The Incarnation: Jesus came TO all people. (Luke 2:11)
The first coming of Jesus has already happened. The Old Testament speaks of the coming Messiah. Then Jesus was born with the title, "Emanuel" meaning "God with us." God became one of us in the person of Jesus to save all of us.  

The Second Coming: Jesus will come FOR the saints. (I Thessalonians 4:16-17)
Jesus will descend from heaven the same way He ascended in a cloud with nail prints still in His hands. His feet will not touch the earth. The dead in Christ will rise first. After that, those who are still alive will be caught up together in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. The saints will go back with Jesus while those who are left on earth will go through a tribulation period. Some will perish, but some will become saints during this period. However, it will be much harder because the Holy Spirit will not be on earth during that time and no other saints will be present to minister or to serve as examples.
 
The Third and Final Coming: Jesus will come WITH the saints. (II Thessalonians 1:7)
After the tribulation has passed, Jesus and the saints will return to earth to judge those who still do not know God and still have not confessed Jesus Christ as Lord. According to Zechariah 14:4, Jesus will return in His final descent out of the atmosphere and His feet shall stand in that day upon the Mount of Olives. It is only after this third coming will Jesus set up His kingdom on earth.


Sometimes One is Not Enough
So then, brothers and sisters, stand firm and hold fast to the traditions that you were taught by us, either by word of mouth or by our letter.  (2 Thessalonians 2:15)

Several books in the Old Testament have two parts because of their length. First and Second Samuel, First and Second Kings, and First and Second Chronicles are so divided because they are long books.

Several of the Pauline Epistles have two parts for different reasons. Because the people did not get it right the first time, Paul had to follow up. Paul wrote First Corinthians to teach the early converts how to live a Christian life. They messed up. Paul wrote Second Corinthians to reprimand them for some things they continued to do wrong and to commend them for the few things they were doing right. First Thessalonians was written to teach the Thessalonians about the Second Coming of Jesus. They got it all wrong. They sold all they had because they listened to false prophets claiming the last days had already arrived.  So Paul had to write a second letter that resembles the first letter. He told them certain things must take place before the Second Coming of Jesus. He covered the same material in a sterner manner that replaced the warm gentle manner of the first letter.

Paul wrote First Timothy to teach him how to be an effective pastor. However, the Second Letter to Timothy was not one of rebuke or reprimand. Paul commended Timothy for the fine job he was doing as a young pastor and gave him instruction to carry on with the good work after Paul's death.

Sometimes one is just not enough. When people tell you the same things a second time, is it a rebuke or a commendation?
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You Are Loved!
May our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who loved us and by his grace gave us eternal encouragement and good hope, encourage your hearts and strengthen you in every good deed and word. (2 Thessalonians 2:16-17)

One of the basic needs of a human being is to be loved.  Without love we die. Poets write about love.  Elizabeth Barrett Browning wrote to her husband Robert Browning the infamous sonnet, "How do I love thee? Let me count the ways."  Many songs have been sung about love such as "Love Makes the World Go Round" and "What the World Needs Now is Love, Sweet Love." 

Reading poetry, singing songs, and giving candy or flowers  to those we love are all fine gestures.  Let's try something different this Valentine's Day. Let's show our love for others by inviting them to a spirit-filled church.  Let's pray with them and praise God with them. Let's share God's Word with them.  Let's share what true love is all about.  Let's be a friend by telling a friend about a friend. Let's tell someone about Jesus Christ.  If you really love people, tell them about fire insurance on their souls.  We can do this because "We know how much God loves us because we have felt His love and because we believe Him when He tells us that He loves us dearly" (1 John 4:16).
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