When will Jesus Return?

My current thinking is that Jesus already returned, so I am not looking for any future return. There are simply too many New Testament texts that place the parousia within a first century context.

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Thanks, I appreciate you taking the time to reply.

I believe the same.

I am curious as to how you justify this? Isn’t it supposed to be obvious? I see no signs of Christ in person, or a radical change in human attitude. I have not heard of a massive (or even comparatively small) disappearance of believers. And despite a couple of world wars there has not been the series of cataclysmic events to precede it.

There is no doubt that the early church believed Jesus would return within their lifetime, and it would be fairly easy to read that into Jesus’ own words. But maybe, Jesus had a different definition of Lifetime?

I am sorry, but I see little evidence of Christ’s return. The world would appear to be still turning in the way it has done for millennia.

Richard

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Hi Richard,

There are a number of things to unpack from your post so it may take some time to get to them. But let’s start with this one.

Jesus clearly associated His coming with the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple. That event was quite obvious.

It’s good that you acknowledge this. The most probable reason they believed this is because of His own teaching on the matter. It’s difficult for me to accept that the Holy Spirit would allow them to be misled on this. Also consider that this belief is strongly reinforced in the book of Revelation.

People will interpret things as they see fit. What makes you think it would be the Holy Spirit’s fault if they got it wrong?

But Scripture says that Jesus did not know while on earth.

Richard

While on earth Jesus did not know the day. But he obviously knew the day would happen. What we need to look at is if that day was something Jesus thought was about to happen or something that was thousands of years away.

Matthew 24:34
New American Standard Bible
34 Truly I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all these things take place.

Earlier in that chapter we read of these things like “ not one of these temple stones will be left “ and the temple was destroyed around 70ad.

He tells them if they are on their rooftops flee. That the abomination of desolation will come there .

Matthew 16:27-28
New American Standard Bible
27 For the Son of Man is going to come in the glory of His Father with His angels, and will then repay every person according to his deeds. 28 “Truly I say to you, there are some of those who are standing here who will not taste death until they see the Son of Man coming in His kingdom.

Here it says some won’t even taste death at the coming of the kingdom.

This statement was also made.

Matthew 24:14
New American Standard Bible
14 This gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all the nations, and then the end will come.

Jesus tells them to share the gospel with the whole world.

The whole world would first hear the message.
Matthew 28:18-20
New American Standard Bible
18 And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to Me. 19 Go, therefore, and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to follow all that I commanded you; and behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

Again Jesus tells them they will share it even the remotest places.

Acts 1:6-8
New American Standard Bible
6 So, when they had come together, they began asking Him, saying, “Lord, is it at this time that You are restoring the kingdom to Israel?” 7 But He said to them, “It is not for you to know periods of time or appointed times which the Father has set by His own authority; 8 but you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem and in all Judea, and Samaria, and as far as the remotest part of the earth.”

They would go to Jerusalem, Samaria and the ends of the world. This is just speech for Jew, Samaritans ( half Jewish half gentile ) and ends of the world is just gentiles.

Then in acts 2,8 and 10 we see them going before the Jews, Samaritans and Gentiles.

But also what does Paul say?

Colossians 1:23
New American Standard Bible
23 if indeed you continue in the faith firmly established and steadfast, and not shifting from the hope of the gospel that you have heard, which was proclaimed in all creation under heaven, and of which I, Paul, was made a minister.

( heard under all of creation )

Romans 1:8
New American Standard Bible
8 First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for you all, because your faith is being proclaimed throughout the world.

( throughout the whole world )

1 Thessalonians 1:8
New American Standard Bible
8 For the word of the Lord has sounded forth from you, not only in Macedonia and Achaia, but in every place the news of your faith toward God has gone out, so that we have no need to say anything.

( every place )

1 Corinthians 7:29-31
New American Standard Bible
29 But this I say, brothers, the time has been shortened, so that from now on those who have wives should be as though they had none; 30 and those who weep, as though they did not weep; and those who rejoice, as though they did not rejoice; and those who buy, as though they did not possess; 31 and those who use the world, as though they did not make full use of it; for the present form of this world is passing away.

Here Paul tells them to not focus on changing their status , because the time has been shortened and the world is passing away.

It’s at this point people begin to say “ but the world is the same. It’s not passed away. If this is the new earth…. Why is it like the old. They then think of verses around resurrection, eternal life, lion and lamb and so on. But that’s just symbolism. It’s hyperbolic. Just like the talk of endless fire, endless smoke and so on. It’s just end times and afterlife symbolism.

Insider Isaiah.

Isaiah 65:17-25
New American Standard Bible
New Heavens and a New Earth

17 “For behold, I create new heavens and a new earth;
And the former things will not be remembered or come to mind.
18 But be glad and rejoice forever in what I create;
For behold, I create Jerusalem for rejoicing
And her people for gladness.
19 I will also rejoice in Jerusalem and be glad in My people;
And there will no longer be heard in her
The voice of weeping and the sound of crying.
20 No longer will there be in it an infant who lives only a few days,
Or an old person who does not live out his days;
For the youth will die at the age of a hundred,
And the one who does not reach the age of a hundred
Will be thought accursed.
21 They will build houses and inhabit them;
They will also plant vineyards and eat their fruit.
22 They will not build and another inhabit,
They will not plant and another eat;
For as the lifetime of a tree, so will be the days of My people,
And My chosen ones will fully enjoy the work of their hands.
23 They will not labor in vain,
Or give birth to children for disaster;
For they are the descendants of those blessed by the Lord,
And their descendants with them.
24 It will also come to pass that before they call, I will answer; while they are still speaking, I will listen. 25 The wolf and the lamb will graze together, and the lion will eat straw like the ox; and dust will be the serpent’s food. They will do no evil or harm on all My holy mountain,” says the Lord.

There it also mentions the new heaven and earth. It also mentions deaths, births and so on. It’s not literal and either is the verses in revelation about new heaven and earth. It’s all symbolism.

*Literally, is “about to” come. The imminence factor is magnified greatly throughout the New Testament with a good literal translation. The Greek word here, and elsewhere, is Strong’s # 3195

https://biblehub.com/interlinear/matthew/16-27.htm

https://biblehub.com/greek/mellei_3195.htm

And note the connection to the judgment. Was there to be more than one coming and more than one judgment?

https://biblehub.com/text/acts/17-31.htm

Trouble is… there is no evidence that it has happened.

Pitching Scripture against reality is a fail every time.

Sorry and all that

Richard

I’m not sure that Matthew 24:26-31 doesn’t speak against full preterism, maybe especially verse 31?

I’ll check it out after hiking. I’ve been a preterist since I was 15 though. I agree that the urgency develops during the gospels and acts as time goes by.

Colossians
16 Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of a feast day or a new moon or a sabbath day:
17 which are a shadow of *the things to come; but the body is Christ’s.

*The things about to come.

What part is against reality?

Before I respond again, im curious by any chance did you get a chance to read my whole post? I feel that it already answered the question you posed.

There is no evidence that what happened? That Jesus returned when he said he would?

The destruction of Jerusalem and the temple are evidence.

Last time I looked Jerusalem was still standing. So is the temple but under new ownership.

Sorry, you will have to do better than that.

If Jesus had returned we would see Him. He would not be hiding out somewhere.

If you mean the one quoting Issaiah?

I haven’t been to Jerusalem but from what I can gather the wailing wall is almost permanently occupied. There is enough weeping there to negate that prophecy as being current.

Richard

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What makes you think reading it literally is better than understanding it as hyperbolic symbolism?

You can read all about it:

https://www.gutenberg.org/files/2850/2850-h/2850-h.htm

Hi Dale,

Immediately after the distress of which days?

The temple , 2nd one, was destroyed. There is no third temple there.

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Let’s also look at the next three verses:

32 “Now learn this lesson from the fig tree: As soon as its twigs get tender and its leaves come out, you know that summer is near. 33 Even so, when you see all these things, you know that it[e] is near, right at the door. 34 Truly I tell you, this generation will certainly not pass away until all these things have happened.

So we have a clear statement from Jesus about when “all these things” would happen.

Regards