Grace Protestant Reformed Church

Jesus Comes to Judge

Minister:
Date: AM
Text: II Thessalonians 1; Lord's Day 19
Psalters: 16, 253, 13, 139
Series: Heidelberg Catechism
  1. He returns.
    1. The One Who died for us will return literally, visibly and personally, as He went up to heaven.
      1. It will be open and public as lightning flashing over all the earth (Luke 17:24).
      2. It is “revelation” (II Thessalonians 1:7) because it will “uncover” or “unveil” Jesus’ unspeakable glory.
    2. Christ’s return inaugurates a new phase of history (His eternal kingdom) ending life as we know it.
      1. His return brings the judgment of both the just and the unjust (II Thess. 1:6-10).
      2. This return inaugurates the realization of the believer’s hope (cf. I Cor. 1:7,8; Phil. 1:6,10; I John 2:28; I Tim. 4:8; II Tim. 4:1).
      3. And Christ’s return brings the creation of a new heavens and earth (II Peter 3:3-13).
  2. The chief purpose of Jesus’ return is to judge.
    1. Jesus is the Judge (John 5:22,27).
    2. This judgment’s purpose is the theodicy - the justification of God’s every work in the consciousness of all moral creatures.
      1. All rational, moral creatures (men and angels) will appear in our resurrection bodies.
      2. It will be public, so Christ and His cause will be publicly justified and all the power of Christ’s blood manifested.
      3. It will manifest that God was just and perfectly wise in all of His governing of the world.
    3. He comes “with flaming fire” (II Thessalonians 1:7,8).
  3. To know that Jesus returns to judge is “most desirable and comfortable to the righteous” (Belgic Conf., Art. 37).
    1. First, it is a day of recompense, visiting every unforgiven sin and setting everything straight.
    2. Second, Christ’s return is “rest” (7) for those who are “troubled” in this life.
    3. May the knowledge of this coming Day strengthen your resolve to endure patiently the trials and travails of this life.