The Seven Great Signs of Christ’s Second Coming (Lecture)

The Seven Great Signs of Christ’s Second Coming (Lecture)

November 24th, 1997

Matthew 24

And Jesus went out, and departed from the temple: and his disciples came to him for to shew him the buildings of the temple. And Jesus said unto them, See ye not all these things? verily I say unto you, There shall not be left here one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down. And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world? And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you. For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many. And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places. All these are the beginning of sorrows. Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name’s sake. And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another. And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many. And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold. But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come. When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:) Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains: Let him which is on the housetop not come down to take any thing out of his house: Neither let him which is in the field return back to take his clothes. And woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck in those days! But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the sabbath day: For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be. And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect’s sake those days shall be shortened. Then if any man shall say unto you, Lo, here is Christ, or there; believe it not. For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect. Behold, I have told you before. Wherefore if they shall say unto you, Behold, he is in the desert; go not forth: behold, he is in the secret chambers; believe it not. For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. For wheresoever the carcase is, there will the eagles be gathered together. Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken: And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other. Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh: So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors. Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled. Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away. But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only. But as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, And knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. Then shall two be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left. Two women shall be grinding at the mill; the one shall be taken, and the other left. Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come. But know this, that if the goodman of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up. Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh. Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his lord hath made ruler over his household, to give them meat in due season? Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing. Verily I say unto you, That he shall make him ruler over all his goods. But and if that evil servant shall say in his heart, My lord delayeth his coming; And shall begin to smite his fellowservants, and to eat and drink with the drunken; The lord of that servant shall come in a day when he looketh not for him, and in an hour that he is not aware of, And shall cut him asunder, and appoint him his portion with the hypocrites: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
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THE SEVEN GREAT SIGNS OF CHRIST’S SECOND COMING (LECTURE) 

Dr. W. A. Criswell 

Matthew 24 

11-24-97  Lecture 

 

 

Out of all the lessons I have taught, or could teach, there is none more interesting than the lesson that we seek to follow this morning.  It is in two parts. The first part, The Seven Great Signs of Christ’s Second Coming.  And the second part, The Seven Mighty Miracles at the End of the World.  So, we start with The Seven Great Signs of Christ’s Second Coming.  That would particularly refer to Matthew chapter 24. 

Scripture never uses the word second.  The coming of Christ is so all-inclusive and all-important.  It is called erchomenos, in Revelation 1:4 and 8 and 4 and 8.  It is called the parousia, "the presence," "the sign of your coming."  That’s Matthew 24:3.  It is called the apokalupsis, "the unveiling," in Romans 1:1.  And it is called the epiphaneian, "the appearance," in Titus 2:13, "looking for the glorious appearance of our Lord." 

Luke 21:26 says, "And there shall be signs in heaven and on earth."  These remarkable providences foreshadow the mighty events that precede the coming of our Lord.  And for us to look at them, to prepare for them, is one of the interesting assignments we have in our Christian pilgrimage.  These signs, events are the ABC’s making up the words, sentences that say something everlastingly vital and important.  He who has eyes to see, let him see.  "He who has ears to hear, let him hear." 

In Luke 21:29-31, these signs indicate and point out, as the leafing of a tree indicates spring, and as the rapids of the river indicate Niagra, so these signs and events indicate the soon coming of our Lord.  Despite their variety they all have the same alphabet and they all point to the same thing.

Number 1, they point to the end of the world.  Matthew 24:3 uses "the end of the world."  Matthew 24:35, "Heaven and earth shall pass away."  These signs point to that ultimate denouement of all history. 

Number 2, they point to the coming of Christ.  Matthew 24:30, "Then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven."  And they point to the end of the world.  Everything in creation, as far as the eye can see, presents death and deterioration.  There are dead trees, dead flowers, dead animals, dead men, dead planets, dead seas.  There is never a building up, but always a running down.  The universe is like a clock, wound up, but running down. 

This leads to depths of human pessimism and despair.  And of course, you have the incidence of suicide everywhere.  One of the most famous that you ever read is that of Marilyn Monroe, out there in Hollywood. 

The despair of the end of life is universal.  But, in Christ, learning to read these signs, we see in the transitory the abiding, in the dying the living, in the passing the coming, in the dissolution the eternal, and in the cataclysm the triumph of Christ.  So, these signs point to the coming of our Lord. 

And as I say, there are seven great signs of Christ’s coming triumph.  The disciples were deeply interested in them in Matthew 24:3.  We cannot know the exact time.  Even Christ did not know, Matthew 24:36.  Only God knows that exact time.  But, in Matthew 24:42, 44, we are to watch and be ready.  The signs, and you listen to this, the clock of God’s dealing with us, and the universe, is the Jew.  He’s got a clock up there.  And that clock He looks at is the Jew. 

One, the presence of the Jew is a sign.  Christ will personally meet with him here in this world, Matthew 24:34, the genea, the offspring, the race, the kind, the descent.  Now you look at history.  In the Bible and in history you read about the Canaanites, the Hivites, the Hittites, the Moabites, the Jebusites, the Ammonites, the Girgashites, the Assyrians, the Babylonians, on and on.  You read about them, such as in Romans 11:25-29 and Jeremiah 31:35-37.  You read about them.  And I want to ask you something.  Did anyone of you ever see a Hivite?  Did you ever see a Canaanite?  Did you ever see a Moabite or a Jebusite or an Ammonite or a Girgashite, or any other of those ites?  Or did you ever hear of anybody who ever heard of anybody who ever saw one of them? 

But, I can take you here in the city of Dallas and show you in this city something like ten thousand Jews.  And we’re just one of the many cities of the world.  God said, "He’ll be here when I come."  And you surely have a fulfillment of that all around you. 

Number two, our Lord will return to His home in Palestine.  Psalm 105:8-11, the land of Israel belongs to the Jew forever.  He will return, the Bible says, in unbelief and will be converted in the land, Ezekiel 36:24 and following; Romans 11:25-29.  If you have ever been in Israel, ninety percent of those people are atheists.  That is the most overwhelming unbelieving providence that I ever looked at in my life.  They don’t even believe in God.  But, they are Jews and the Bible says in Ezekiel and Romans that they will return in unbelief.  And that’s exactly what you see. 

All right, a third sign, the Hebrew language will be spoken again, Jeremiah 31:23.  That is an amazing thing.  And for two thousand five hundred years that language has been dead and forgotten.  In the Captivity in Babylon, Hebrew was forgotten.  They spoke Aramaic.  Later on, a lot of them spoke Greek.  But, in Babylon, they learned to speak the language of commerce and of government and of the people. 

If you ever take time to read the eighth chapter of Nehemiah, when those Jews met together, they had to have Ezra up there to translate the Bible for them.  They had forgotten their Hebrew and they knew only [Aramaic].  And when you read in the New Testament the life of our Lord, they all spoke Aramaic.  I just can’t imagine that.  For twenty thousand five hundred years, Hebrew was forgotten.  But, Jeremiah, in Jeremiah 31:23, Jeremiah said this language will be spoken again. 

And on the fifteenth day of May in 1948, Hebrew became the official language of the new State of Israel.  There is a very simple reason for that.  Those Jews that were re-gathered according to the Bible, those Jews that were re-gathered in Palestine spoke every kind of a language you can imagine.  They were gathered there from Africa, from Asia, from Europe, from the Lord only knows where, Africa.  How are they going to be together, in a government, in a state, in a community, and everybody speaking a language that nobody else can understand?  So, they decided that Hebrew would be the language of the state and of the people.  So, May 15, 1948, Hebrew became the official language of the new state of Israel.  Two thousand five hundred years that was unknown and unspoken. 

All right, a fourth sign of the approach of our Lord.  The gospel is being preached all over the earth, Matthew 24:14.  That gospel will be preached over all the earth. 

I want to take a little leaf out of my own life and show you that the gospel is being preached over all the earth, a sign, Jesus says, of His coming.  I was in Thailand, on the outside of Bangkok, and right in the middle of Thailand is a great mountain range, a big mountain range.  And as I was on the alluvial plane on the other side of Bangkok, looking up at that big mountain range, the missionary who was taking me around made a big sweep of his hand, like that, and said to me, "Do you see that big mountain range?"  He said, "There are something like three million to four million people who live in that great mountain range, who have never seven heard the gospel of Jesus Christ.  Yet, the Lord says that this gospel is going to be preached though out the earth and right there in that one spot, are something like three to four million who have never heard it.  Well, how in the earth is such a prophecy ever going to be fulfilled, when Jesus said it is going to be?  Well, let me give you an illustration of it. 

I was walking around the Fiji Islands, just meandering around, just looking.  And as I walked around I saw a Fiji Islander down on his side with his ear to the ground.  It was an unusual sight to me.  So, I walked over to see what in the earth that Islander was doing.  And I was amazed.  He had a little radio, about that big, maybe three inches wide and five inches long.  He had a little radio pressed down to the ground and his ear pressed on top of that little radio.  I got down by his side, to listen, to see what that Fiji Islander was hearing.  And did you know he was listening to one of the finest sermons I ever heard in my life?  Out there, on the ground, listening to a wonderful message about the Lord Jesus.  And I thought of that prophecy.  This message is going to be preached to the whole world.  And that’s a sign of the coming of our Lord. 

All right, a fifth sign of the coming of our Lord, a vast increase in knowledge.  And I cannot believe what is happening.  Daniel is a sealed book.  But it is opened in the Revelation.  I just cannot imagine what has happened in our world.  I still don’t know what in the world a computer is all about.  Yet, we’ve got a room over here, right next to us, filled with those things.  And they’re getting ready to give one to everybody that goes to school, even the little children.  And of course, that Internet and the Web and all that, I don’t even know what they’re about. 

But, I want to show you how times have changed.  My great-grandfather, John Yancey Criswell, came from Knox County, Kentucky, on the eastern side of Kentucky up there in the mountains,   My grandfather John Yancey Criswell came from Know County, Kentucky to Texas.  He came in a covered wagon, and it took him three months to make the journey, three full months, all summer long, all summer long; he made that journey from Knox County to Texas. 

Did you know that I got in an airplane, here, in the airport in Dallas, I got on an airplane.  And it happened to be that we had a tailwind.  I was going to a preaching appointment in Virginia.  And we flew over Knox County, Kentucky.  And I looked at my watch.  It had been one hour and thirty-five minutes since I got on the plane here in Dallas.  And we were already over there in that world.  What took my great-grandpap a whole summer to make, I did it in one hour and thirty-five minutes.  Now, that is this modern world.  It is unthinkable, unthinkable. 

I have a deacon who organized the Electronic Bible Society.  And just touch a button, and the entire Bible is right there before you.  One of those computers or whatever the thing is.  I cannot believe what is happening. 

There is a publication called The Biblical Archive.  And I looked at it.  And there, in it, is letter from me.  And in the last paragraph, I wrote, "Truly, truly, God’s greatest miracle is seen in the Electronic Bible Society.  And that is a wonderful a work of God as the coming of our Lord redeemer.  That makes possible the one world.  And may I make an aside?  It makes possible the one great leader that opposes our Lord, the Anti-Christ.  These things that happen, they can happen for good, but they also can happen for evil. 

Now, we’re talking about the signs of our Lord’s coming.  Sign number six, each convert is a sign, a signal, of the end of the age.  Romans 11:25 speaks of the pleroma, the full number in God’s Book.  God has a Book up there in heaven.  And our names are written in it, all the names of the Lord’s redeemed.  And when the last one in that Book comes in, that’s the end of the world. 

Romans 11:28 it uses the word "election."  And so many people stumble around with that.  I want to show you, and want you to remember this as ling as you live, I want to show you what the vocabulary that the Bible presents to us.  There are two vocabularies in the Bible, two of them.  One is up there.  And the other is down here. 

The vocabulary up there is God’s.  And God will use the words election, foreknowledge, predestination, omniscience, presence, power, that’s up there.  Let me tell you how you can be a multi-millionaire.  Very simple.  If you can know what the Stock Market will do five minutes in advance, you can be a multi-millionaire.  That’s all you’ve got to do, five minutes later.  That’s up there.  When God talks, that’s the way God talks, about choice, foreknowledge, predestination.  That’s up there.

But, down here is another vocabulary.  And our vocabulary is choice, repentance, faith, commitment, dedication.  But, you can’t talk election, you don’t know.  You can’t talk  predestination.  You can’t talk omniscience, you just can’t do it.  That’s God’s.  But, down here, you can talk choice, repentance, commitment, faith, dedication, love, oh, dear.  How many wonderful things can we talk about here. 

All right.  Sign number seven, the apostasy of the Laodicean church age.  Matthew 24:12, 22, "Because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall grow cold."  Second Thessalonians 2 and 3, "That day shall not come, until there come a falling away first."  2 Timothy 3:1and 5: "Know this, in the last days, perilous times shall come, having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof."  In 2 Peter 3 speaks of the same thing. 

So, there are seven ages of the church.  According to the Revelation, the Ephesian church age, leaving their first love; the Smyrna church period, the church of the martyrs; the Pergamean church period, wedded to the world; the Thyatiran church period, rich inidolatry; the Sardian church period, the days of the Reformation; the Philadelphian church period, the church of the open door; and the last one is the Laodicean church period, Christ is outside, knocking at the door. 

The change from Philadelphian to Laodicea, I have an illustration of that, the change of that one period to the other.  When I was a boy, a little boy, I never saw a broken family.  I never saw anyone divorced.  I never saw a door locked or a car locked.  I never heard an athletic game being played on Sunday.  There was no fear of crime or terror.  There were no liquor stores.  There was no such thing as AIDS.  I never heard of a homosexual.  There was no bad language on radio or television because there was no such thing when I was a boy, on radio and TV. 

As you look around you at the world in which you now live, Matthew 24:12, "Iniquity shall abound."  And that is certainly true, and becoming more true every day of our lives. 

Now, before I get to the seven mighty miracles at the end of the world, do you have any questions you want to ask or any observations you want to make?  

All right. 

[Student talking]  

Say that again.  Do I think what? 

 [Student talking] 

Not all of them, some of them.  For example: the Jews still here, that’s a sign that the Lord is coming.  The Jew has returned to Palestine and will continue to do so.  That’s a sign, on and on, like that.  But, the things that pertain to the choice of God, I do not know.  The gospel is going to be preached to all the world.  That is coming to pass.  But, it hasn’t come to pass yet.  Some of them are very evident and some of them are being fulfilled now. 

All right. 

 [Student talking]

No.  They could come at any time.

 [Student talking]

The tremendous thing that we have to face and remember is that Jesus Himself said, "I don’t know when it is.  Only the Father knows."  But, we just have these signs, and make us assured that the Lord has not forgotten His saints. 

So, we’re going to speak now, on the second half of this, "The Seven Mighty Miracles at the End of the World."  And you spoke of one of them, the Rapture.  Nobody knows when that is.  But, the Rapture is the first thing that happens at the end of the world, the Rapture, 1 Corinthians chapter 15 and 1 Thessalonians chapter 4, the Rapture. 

You know, if you will believe the Bible it is remarkable how God has revealed to us these things that are going to come to pass.  For example, the Revelation, which is a closed book to practically all of Christendom and, of course, unknown to the world outside.  It will be very clear what Revelation reveals to us, if we will just believe.  For example the outline, God’s outline of the Revelation, is in Revelation 1:19, "Write the things you have seen, the things that are and three, the things that shall be meta tauta, after these things."  That’s God outline of Revelation. 

So, when we pick up the Book, John follows the outline faithfully.  "You write the things you have seen."  And he had seen that marvelous revelation of Jesus, wonderful, marvelous, number one.  

Number two, "write the things that are."  And the churches "are."  We’ve got one down there at Ervay and San Jacinto.  He’s got one over there in Seagoville.  The churches "are."  Second, "write the things that are."  So he wrote chapter 2 and chapter 3 of the Revelation starting at Ephesus and ending with Laodicea, "write the things that are." 

Number three, "write the things meta tauta, which shall be after these things," after the things that are, after the church is raptured, after the church is no longer here.  And when I looked at the next chapter, Revelation chapter 4, those are the first words, meta tauta, "after these things," he is raptured up to heaven.  Remember Revelation is written in symbols.  He was a symbol of the rapture of the Christian people of God.  And beginning at meta tauta, the fourth chapter, the church disappears, it’s not seen, not mentioned, not referred to; it’s gone.  It is up there with the Lord in heaven.  At the bema of Christ, the great judgment where we will receive our rewards and, finally, at the marriage supper of the Lamb.  And the next time you see the church is in the nineteenth chapter of Revelation, the Bride of Christ coming to this world. 

Isn’t that a wonderful way to read the Bible and to preach it?  Just as God says it, just as God reveals it, and it becomes an open book to you.  And those things beginning at chapter 4 to chapter 19 are the things that are going to happen during the Tribulation, then period of the Tribulation.  That period of time, all the Christians are gone. 

Well, why the delay in the Lord’s coming?  Second Peter verse 9 and chapter 3 says it’s because of the long-suffering of Christ of God, just waiting fro people to repent. 

Well, we’re speaking of the seven mighty miracles at the end of the world.  The second one is the Tribulation, he thlipsis tes megale, "the tribulation, the great."  And that Tribulation is revealed to us in Revelation 5 to 19.  In Revelation 7:14, it is called "the tribulation, the great", tes thlipeos tes megales. 

That period of the Tribulation ends in the great war of Armageddon.  You will see that in Revelation 9, Revelation11, Revelation 13, Revelation 14, Revelation 16; Isaiah 53, in Ezra, in Daniel, in Joel and in Zechariah, speaking of the great war of Armageddon. 

You know, have you ever been there in Megiddo.  It just looks like the most marvelous place for a war.  On the south side of it you rise into the mountains.  And before you is a great, great plain, a great big plain.  On the other side of it, the mountains pick up and start again.  That’s the most marvelous place for some kind of a confrontation you could ever think for in your life. 

And in that place of Megiddo, Barak and Deborah fought against Sisera.  Barak and Deborah fought against Sisera and the Midianites.  In that valley is where Gideon fought.  In that valley, Saul was slain by the Philistines.  In that valley, Ahaziah was slain by arrows from Jehu.  In that valley, Josiah was slain by Pharoah Neco.  In that valley, Jeremiah laments the death of Josiah.  And through the years since, history is full of the great confrontations in the valley of Megiddo, Armageddon.  Well, isn’t that remarkable!  That’s going the end of the world when that war is fought in Megiddo. 

All right.  We’re speaking of the events, the miracles, when the Lord comes.  The fourth one is the binding of Satan, the Millennium.  Revelation 20:1-4 is the binding of Satan.  And he is thrown into the Abyss, the Abyss, the bottomless pit, the place of imprisonment, where the evildoers are thrown, Gehenna.  There are the Beasts.  There are the False Prophet.  There is Satan.  And there are the lost. 

Now, when Satan is cast into the Abyss the Lord Jesus establishes in this earth the Millennium.  Mille is the Greek word for thousand.  So, for a thousand years, there is the Millennium.  All through the story of Christendom there is the dream of a golden age.  You’ll see it in Daniel 2.  You’ll see it in Acts 3.  No unbeliever enters that millennial reign of Christ.  In that time, there is judgment upon Israel, in Ezekiel 20.  And there is judgment upon the Gentiles, Matthew 25.  

In that time there are blessings upon Israel, in Jeremiah 23 and Amos 3 and Romans 11.  In that time, there are blessings upon Egypt.  That is one of the most amazing prophecies.  I’d like for somebody to turn to Isaiah chapter 19.  And I want you to read Isaiah 19:23-25.  We’re going to speak about the blessings upon Egypt at that time. 

All right.  Now, you stand up and read it out loud.  This is Isaiah 19:23-25.

[Student reads the text] 

Can you believe that?  After all these tragic judgments that we have enumerated from God’s word.  Just look at that passage.  God is going to love Egypt.  God is going to love Assyria, Iraq and Persia, all that bunch over there.  It’s going to be amazing!  And there are going to be blessing upon all creation, in Isaiah 11, Isaiah 35 and Romans 8, and the exaltation of Christ in Zechariah 14, Luke 1, Philippians 2 and Revelation 11. 

All right.  Another of the miracles of the end of the world, the Great White Throne Judgment.  That’s in Revelation 20:11-15.  There is no judgment ever beyond that.  Whether we are saved or lost that judgment is here. The judgment up there, in that Revelation, the Great White Throne Judgment is the recompense for what we have done, our work.  The judgment is only for works.  The Christian stands before the bema and receive the reward of his work.  The lost stands before this great white throne to receive the reward of his work. 

There is a beautiful throne in Revelation 4.  There is a rainbow.  There is a contract-keeping Christ.  The Lord remembers His promises.  The elders are there, 24 of them, in white.  The seven lamps, the seven spirits of God.  The sea of glass, the celestial pavement on which God’s people stand.  There are cherubim, singing praises.  Just oh, in this world. 

Then, why is the judgment at the end?  Because you don’t die when you die.  Your influence lives on.  And you can’t be judged when you die, because what you do lives on and on.  I think of Hitler.  Dear me.  He committed suicide, but the things of Hitler still go on.  I think of all the evil people back yonder in history.  And I think of all the good people.  You don’t die when you die.  Your influence lives on.  And that’s why the judgment is at the end of the world and hell separates between the saved and the lost. 

All right, the sixth great miracle at the end of the age, there is a New Heaven and a New Earth.  When it says, in Revelation 21:1, "He saw a new heaven and a new earth," practically everybody, I mean, great scholars, will read that and say God is going to take away this planet and this universe and this solar system and all of these units that we see up there in the sky, God’s going to take them away.  And God’s going to create a new earth and a new system up there above us.  That’s what they say. 

I don’t believe a word of that.  I think matter, substance, is forever.  I think it is indestructible.  It cannot be destroyed.  There is no way in the world that you can destroy substance or matter.  God created it.  And it cannot be uncreated.

But, what that word means, parerchomai, parechome,parelthe,  third person singular, second aorist indicative, what that word means, and I have it written down here, it means "to pass by, from one place to another."  It does not refer to annihilation, but palingenesis, rebirth, regeneration, no burned-out stars.  They’re up there forever.  There will be no more deserts, no cast-up graves, no stained blood.  It is re-created, remade.  This earth is going to be remade.  The whole universe is going to be born again.  It’s going to be glorious, what God’s going to do.  But, He’s not going to annihilate this creation.  

It says there that there’s no more sea.  To the ancient, the sea was a fearful, frightful awesome monster.  They had no compass and the violence of the storm was terrible to them.  And the still waters were precious.  And up there, in that new heaven and new earth, there will be no suffering. Nobody’s going to die.  "There is no more death, neither sorrow nor crying.  Neither shall there be any more pain, for these things have all passed away." 

 

I will sing you a song of a beautiful land,  

In the faraway home of the soul, 

Where no storms ever beat on the glittering strand, 

Or the years of eternity roll. 

 

Oh how sweet it will be In that beautiful land, 

So free from all sorrow and pain, 

With songs on our lips and with harps in our hands, 

We’ll great one another again. 

["Home of the Soul," by Ellen M. H. Gates, 1865] 

 

Oh, just to have a meeting with the Lord and talking to Him, and to meet Him, and then just name it, here in Dallas.  Jonah, Isaiah, Moses, Adam and Eve, my mother and daddy, the people I knew when I first came here to Dallas fifty-three years ago.  Oh, dear!  What a communion. 

Now, the seventh and last, of the great signs, the New Jerusalem.  Described in Revelation 21:1-22:5, the new Jerusalem.  It is our eternal home which Jesus is preparing for us. 

You know, it’s just amazing what happens to you when you believe in the literal meaning of the Bible.  Let me give you an example of that, Jesus, in John 14, 

 

Let not you heart be troubled: believe in God, believe also in Me. 

In my Father’s house are many mansions: I go to prepare a topos, a topos, for you. 

And if I go and prepare a topos for you, I will come again, and receive you unto Myself; that where I am, there may ye be also. 

[John 14:1-3] 

 

What does he mean by a topos?  You can’t translate it any other way than place.  Place, this is a place.  Dallas is a place.  Texas is a place.  A place is physical, a place.  And He says, "I’m going to prepare a place for you."  Heaven is a place.  It’s a reality.  And we have a home in it.  Jesus says, "I’m preparing it for you up there in that place." 

John approaches that place and he declares it and He describes it.  And just think of how it is!  It has a wall made out of jasper, what must the gate be?  If this is a gate, what must be a street?  If this is the street, what must the mansion be?  If this is the mansion, what must be the throne?  And if this be the throne, what must be the King? 

The city is a perfect cube.  Fifteen hundred miles that way, fifteen hundred miles that way and fifteen hundred miles that way.  It’s a perfect cube.  And it goes one thousand five hundred miles up and all those street levels in between, one on another.  And you know you would think that would be black, that it would be dark, that one thousand five hundred miles under those streets one on top of the other. 

The Bible says that there is no need for the moon, no need for the sun and no need for the stars, for the Lord God is the light thereof and the Lamb is the lamp of it all. 

Oh, I just can’t imagine it!  And do you notice the color, ah the things of color.  One of the things that tells us about the character of God; He loves colors.  God loves colors.  The rainbow, look at it, the sunset, just look at it.  Yellow from the flowers, just look at them!  God loves colors.  And when you get to heaven, there will be a lot of color there.  And a beautiful communion, a koinonia, a city gathered around God’s throne.  And it is our final triumph, heaven. 

 

My final sun is sinking fast, my race is nearly run. 

My strongest trials now are past, my triumph is beyond. 

Oh, come, angel band come and around me stand, 

O bear me away on your snowy wings to my eternal home. 

["Angel Band, Anonymous] 

 

And having reached the age, in a few days, of 88, I look forward to that great transition and that precious koinonia, the koinonia, the fellowship of the saints.  

Well, God love you, the Lord bless you.  Do you want to say anything, add anything? 

[Student response] 

Well, let me tell you what I preached in the pulpit.  You heard me just now say that I believe in the literal meaning and message of the Bible.  So, when God re-creates all of these spheres, and all of these planets, and apparently there are millions of them out there, I’m going to ask God to give me a planet of my own.  And on that planet I’m going to put a soapbox.  And I’m going to stand on that soapbox and preach Jesus forever.  There’s not going to be a clock there.  There’s not going to be a calendar there.  All I’ve got to do is to stand there for ever and proclaim the wonder of the Lord forever.

And I’m going to invite you and anybody else to come and visit me in my planet and just listen to me preach the unsearchable riches of the Lamb of God, the Lord Jesus.  That’s what I preached in the pulpit. 

We’ll have a mansion of our own.  And maybe we will have a planet of my own.  I’m looking forward to the re-creation of all of God’s universe. 

All right, son. 

[Student response] 

Well, I had three funerals last week.  Three of them.  And two of them, a man and another one, a woman, had been married before and both of their companions were gone.  So, immediately one can ask, "What about that up there in heaven, whose wife will she be?  Whose husband will he be?  And what about the children, you know?" 

The difference between our communion and our communion out there is sex and marriage.  We’re going to be like the angels.  And the angels are sexless.  You don’t have a male angel.  You don’t have a female angel.  And you don’t have any little baby angels.  You just don’t.  The angels are created in the image of God.  And we’re going to be like that.  There will be no men saints.  There will be no women saints.  And there will be no sexuality.  There will be no marriage in heaven.  There will be no children born.  So, you’re going to be you.  And your wife will be she.  And we will be like Christ, in the image of our Lord.  But, we will not be married. 

Now I can not imagine that.  I cannot imagine not being a man.  I cannot imagine my wife not being a woman.  I just can’t imagine it.  But, that’s going to be heaven.  She will be herself, but not married.  She will not be a woman.  And I will be a man, but not married.  There will be no sexual intimacies.  We will be like our Lord who was unmarried.   And up there in heaven is a divine unity.  And we’re going to be like that. 

Anything else, anybody?  Well, I announced to Dr. Allen here that, when we meet the next time, it will be our last, I have page after page of do’s and don’ts for us, these things you ought to do, page after page of them, and these things you must never do, page after page of them. 

And God bless us, as we live our lives before the people.