First, in order to honestly answer this question, you need to know what the second advent (second coming) is, and based on that knowledge be able to say why you do or don’t believe in it. With that said, what is Jesus’ second advent, and do you believe in it? Second, classifying something as second implies there has been or is a first.
Jesus’ first advent happened when He was born, and that season is celebrated worldwide as Christmas. He lived as a carpenter’s son for about thirty years. At age thirty, He went into public ministry (see Luke 3:23). He preached the need for repentance: “Repent of your sins and turn to God, for the Kingdom of Heaven is near” (Matthew 4:17 NLT). He selected disciples, healed the sick, raised the dead, challenged the religious leaders of His day, and demonstrated the power of God, proving He is God. He commissioned the disciples to go and preach the gospel: “I have been given all authority in heaven and on earth. Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Teach … the end of the age” (Matthew 28:18-20 NLT).
That era ended with Him being envied by the authorities, falsely accused, tried, condemned, and crucified. He died, was buried, and rose again; He revealed Himself to different individuals and groups to prove He was alive (see Matthew 28:9-10; Luke 24:25). Forty days after His resurrection, He ascended into heaven. On different occasions before His ascension, He promised to return and take those who believe in Him to heaven, where they will live with Him and the Father forever. On one such occasion, He said to His disciples, “When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am going” (John 14:3 NLT). At His ascension, angels encouraged the saddened disciples who witnessed the event by saying: “Men of Galilee, why are you standing here staring into heaven? Jesus has been taken from you into heaven, but someday he will return from heaven in the same way you saw him go” (Acts 1:11 NLT).
As a reminder for believers regarding their future with God, the apostle Paul writes, “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love him” (1 Corinthians 2:9 NLT).
The second advent, therefore, refers to Jesus’ return to earth, bodily, not as a baby, but as God in the same way in which He ascended into heaven, and the Scripture says every eye will see Him on His return: “Look! He comes with the clouds of heaven. And everyone will see him—even those who pierced him” (Revelation 1:7 NLT).
It’s very clear from Scripture that Jesus is coming back from heaven. In the book of Revelation, He announces, “Look, I am coming soon! Blessed are those who obey the words of prophecy written in this book” (Revelation 22:7 NLT). Just as His first advent was prophesied and fulfilled to the letter, even so will His second advent be fulfilled. Did you know that? If not, do you understand it now, and do you believe it?
While Jesus came alone as a baby the first time, His second coming will be with a lot of glamor and fanfare; He’ll be accompanied by His holy angels and the Christians who have been raptured seven years earlier (see Matthew 25:31; 2 Thessalonians 1:7; 1 Thessalonians 3:13; Jude:14-15). Oh, wow -- it’ll be amazing for those who have been expecting His return, but for those who haven’t, it’ll be frightening. The Scripture says, “… all hid themselves in the caves and among the rocks of the mountains. And they cried to the mountains and the rocks, ‘Fall on us and hide us from the face of the one who sits on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb. For the great day of their wrath has come, and who is able to survive?’” (Revelation 615-17 NLT).
Jesus’ mission at His first advent was to seek and save the lost (see Luke 19:10). What is His mission when he returns? His mission will be to rule and reign, and judge the world (unbelievers); “But when the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on his glorious throne. All the nations will be gathered in his presence, and he will separate the sheep from the goats. He will place the sheep at his right hand and the goats at his left. Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the Kingdom prepared for you from the creation of the world. Then the King will turn to those on the left and say, ‘Away with you, you cursed ones, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his demons’” (Matthew 25:31-34, 41 NLT).
What should one do with such knowledge? In other words, Jesus is coming back: so what? That question could best be answered if we knew the implication of that return. Just as He promised blessings for those who believe in Him, He’ll have wages for those who wanted nothing to do with Him, and they will be judgment and sentencing. The Psalmist says it this way: “The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God” (Psalm 9:17 KJV).
Jesus stated clearly during His lifetime what man’s problem was (and still is): “The world’s sin is that it refuses to believe in me” (John 16:9 NLT). Those who refuse to believe in Him are the ones categorized as the wicked; they will face judgment and condemnation. The author of the Book of Hebrews poses a very important question that every person should ponder sincerely. He asks: “The message God delivered through angels has always stood firm, and every violation of the law and every act of disobedience was punished. So what makes us think we can escape if we ignore this great salvation that was first announced by the Lord Jesus himself?”
(Hebrews 2:2-3 NLT). The inference of this question is quite obvious: anyone who ignores Jesus’ offer of salvation will undoubtedly suffer the consequences—judgment and condemnation.
If you have knowledge of how things will be at Jesus’ second advent, and you still refuse to repent, you cannot blame anyone else for the consequence of your unbelief—hell. The apostle Paul, writing to encourage the Christians in Thessalonica, wrote: “God will provide rest for you who are being persecuted and also for us when the Lord Jesus appears from heaven. He (Jesus) will come with his mighty angels, in flaming fire, bringing judgment on those who don’t know God and on those who refuse to obey the good news of Jesus Christ. They will be punished with eternal destruction, forever separated from the Lord and from his glorious power” (2 Thessalonians 1:7-9 NLT).
Once He is back on earth, it will be too late to repent and place faith in Him; the grace period is over and it will be time for the final judgment. It will be like a bus driver closing the doors just before you get on board: too late. It is wise to repent and place your faith in Jesus as soon as you hear the gospel, because no one knows when that advent will be. If you die and haven’t repented, your situation will be the same as if you were alive at His second advent, and haven’t repented—too late!
Now, back to the title: do you believe in the second advent of Jesus? Praise the Lord if you do! If you don’t, please don’t waste any more time; repent today, and ask Jesus (pray) to come into your heart and make you His child. Then you can claim His promises, including eternity with Him in heaven. Also please note that what God says is what’s going to happen, whether or not you believe it. He has the power, and He calls the shot; you don’t. If going to heaven matters to you, I encourage you to settle that issue now. Jesus hasn’t come yet, because He is being patient; He does not want anyone to perish (see 2 Peter 3:9, 15), but one of these days, life will be going on as usual, and suddenly, He’ll appear (see Matthew 24:37-39), and it will be too late.
If you believe Jesus is coming back, how are you living your life now? Are you ready? The Scripture teaches us to be in a state of readiness at all times, “So you, too, must keep watch! For you don’t know what day your Lord is coming … You also must be ready all the time, for the Son of Man will come when least expected” (Matthew 24:42-44 NLT). Are you living according to His Word, or are you doing your own thing, haphazardly? Are you growing in your knowledge of Him; is your mind being renewed? Are you sharing your faith, fulfilling your role in the Church? Here’s an admonition from the apostle Peter: “Dear friends, while you are waiting for these things to happen, make every effort to be found living peaceful lives that are pure and blameless in his sight” (2 Peter 3:14 NLT). Remember, Jesus is coming soon -- sooner than you might think!