Jesus Will Come Again
When Will Jesus Come Again?
The New Heaven and Earth
The Great Tribulation
The Second Coming in Popular Culture
This article summarizes what the Bible does say about the second coming of Jesus and the events surrounding it.
Jesus left no doubt that He will return again to complete His mission of salvation for mankind:
"Don't be troubled. You trust God, now trust in me. There are many rooms in my Father's home, and I am going to prepare a place for you. If this were not so, I would tell you plainly. When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am." (NLT, John 14:1-4)
Related verses: Matthew 23:39, Luke 18:8, John 14:18, 28-29, Acts 1:11, 3:20-21, 1 Corinthians 11:26, Philippians 4:5, Colossians 3:4, 1 Thessalonians 1:10, 2:19, 3:13, 5:23, 2 Thessalonians 2:8, 1 Timothy 6:14-15, Titus 2:13, Hebrews 9:28, James 5:7-9, 2 Peter 1:16, 1 John 2:28, 3:2, Revelation 3:11, 22:12, 22:20.
Many of Jesus' followers expected Him to return within their lifetimes, and that expectation was supported by several passages such as:
"Truly I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all things take place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will not pass away." (NAS, Luke 21:32-33)
On the other hand, passages such as this one place the Second Coming much farther in the future:
"And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in the whole world for a witness to all the nations, and then the end shall come." (NAS, Matthew 24:14)
No completely satisfactory resolution of these differences in the Bible has ever been found, and the timing of the Second Coming has been a subject of hot debate within Christianity from the beginning. Jesus, Himself, said no one would be able to predict exactly when He would return:
"No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. Be on guard! Be alert! You do not know when that time will come." (NIV, Mark 13:32-33)
The event, when it happens, will be swift and unexpected:
So you also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him. (NIV, Matthew 24:43-44)
Over the past 2000 years there have been countless attempts to interpret current events according to the signs in the Bible. There have been innumerable predictions that the Second Coming was imminent. All have been wrong.
Related verses: Matthew 16:27-28, 24:1-51 26:24, Mark 9:1, 13:1-36, 14:62, Luke 9:26-27, 21:5-36, 2 Thessalonians 1:7-10, 2 Peter 3:8-14, Revelation 1:7
Related verses: Matthew 24:42-51, Mark 8:38, 13:33-37, Luke 9:26, 12:35-47, 21:34-36, 1 Thessalonians 5:2-3, 2 Timothy 4:8, Hebrews 9:28, 1 Peter 1:7, 13, 4:13, 2 Peter 3:10-14
Most assuredly, I say to you, the hour is coming, and now is, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God; and those who hear will live. For as the Father has life in Himself, so He has granted the Son to have life in Himself, and has given Him authority to execute judgment also, because He is the Son of Man. Do not marvel at this; for the hour is coming in which all who are in the graves will hear His voice and come forth -- those who have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of condemnation.(NKJV, John 5:25-29)
Related verses: Mark 12:18-27, Luke 14:12-14, Acts 4:2, 17:18, 29-32, 23:6; 24:15-16, 21, Romans 4:17, 5:17, 6:5, 8, 8:11, 11:15, 1 Corinthians 6:14-15, 15:23, 2 Corinthians 1:9, 4:14, 5:1-10, Philippians 3:10-11, 21, Colossians 1:18, 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18, 2 Timothy 2:18, Hebrews 6:2, 11:19, 35, Revelation 20:12-13
Everyone, the still living and the resurrected dead, will face God's judgment. Even those who profess Christianity will be judged by the deeds they have done in life (Matthew 7:21-23, 2 Corinthians 5:10). Those who have lived righteous lives will be granted eternal life; those who have lived evil lives will be condemned to eternal punishment (Matthew 5:29-30, 25:31-46, Mark 9:43-48). The apostle Paul put it this way:
Therefore we are always confident and know that as long as we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord. We live by faith, not by sight. We are confident, I say, and would prefer to be away from the body and at home with the Lord. So we make it our goal to please him, whether we are at home in the body or away from it. For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive what is due him for the things done while in the body, whether good or bad. (NIV, 2 Corinthians 5:6-10)
The righteous who are granted eternal life will receive new spiritual bodies that are in some ways similar to the old earthly body and in some ways different.
So will it be with the resurrection of the dead. The body that is sown is perishable, it is raised imperishable; it is sown in dishonor, it is raised in glory; it is sown in weakness, it is raised in power; it is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body. (NIV, 1 Corinthians 15:42-44)
Related verses: Matthew 7:1, 21-27, 16:24-27, John 3:16-21, 5:21-30, Acts 10:39-43, 17:29-31, Romans 2:5-16, 1 Corinthians 4:5, 15:23, 2 Timothy 4:1-8, James 2:12-17, 4:11-12, 5:7-9, 1 Peter 4:1-6, Jude 1:14-15, Revelation 2:20-23, 20:11-15, 22:12-13
Related article: What does the Bible say about salvation?
And the devil, who deceived them, was thrown into the lake of burning sulfur, where the beast and the false prophet had been thrown. They will be tormented day and night for ever and ever. (NIV, Revelation 20:10)
"As the weeds are pulled up and burned in the fire, so it will be at the end of the age. The Son of Man will send out his angels, and they will weed out of his kingdom everything that causes sin and all who do evil. They will throw them into the fiery furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the kingdom of their Father. He who has ears, let him hear." (NIV, Matthew 13:40-43)
Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, "Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away. (NIV, Revelation 21:1-4)
Related verses: Matthew 8:11, 19:28-30, Mark 14:25, Luke 13:29, John 14:2-3, Romans 8:18-21, 16:20, 1 Corinthians 2:7-10, 13:8-13, 15:20-26, 45-49, Colossians 3:4, 1 John 2:17, Revelation 7:14-17, 11:15, 19:19-20, 22:1-5
The antichrist is sometimes said to be the beasts of Daniel 7:1-12, the beast of Revelation 13:11-18, or the "lawless one" of 2 Thessalonians 2:3, but those interpretations are not certain.
At various times in history one group or another has tried to turn Bible prophecies into propaganda by proclaiming the identity of the antichrist. Those who have been so named include the Roman emperors Caligula, Titus, Nero and Claudius, Muhammad (the prophet of Islam), popes, Protestant theologians, political leaders, and many other individuals. However, such assertions seem to be based on little more than prejudice and hatred. The Bible does not give any clues about the identity of the antichrist and does not encourage speculation.
Related verses: Psalms 2:1-12, Matthew 24:15-51, Mark 13:14-25, Revelation 9:1-11, 16:13-16
Related article: What does the Bible say about the Rapture?