"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" (Hebrews 9:28).
One can hardly imagine a more stark contrast than the difference between the first and second appearing of Jesus Christ. Let us contemplate some of the dramatic distinctions between these two advents.
Two millennia ago Christ was born into obscurity. Upon returning, "He cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see Him" (Revelation 1:7). As a young child, "they presented unto Him gifts; gold, and frankincense, and myrrh" (Matthew 2:11). The Book of Revelation mentions the offering up of royal gold (4:4,10) and priestly incense (8:3) but no myrrh (which was an embalming ointment that had prefigured His death). In His first coming He entered Jerusalem "lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass" (Zechariah 9:9). He will return riding on a white stallion (Revelation 19:11) and splitting the mount of Olives with an earthquake (Zechariah 14:4). He came once in "the form of a servant" (Philippians 2:7), but will return as "KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS" (Revelation 19:16). During His first advent Jesus told us, "for I came not to judge the world, but to save the world" (John 12:47). But John predicts: "in righteousness He doth judge and make war" (Revelation 19:11). When He first appeared, the prophet said, "there is no beauty that we should desire Him" (Isaiah 53:2) but when He comes again it says that "His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on His head were many crowns" (Revelation 19:12).
The timing of His first appearing was predicted by Daniel, but the day of the Second Appearing "knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven" (Matthew 24:36). We do know, however, that it will be glorious beyond description. DW