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The Return of the King

Wisdom for the Heart / Dr. Stephen Davey
The Truth Network Radio
December 20, 2023 12:00 am

The Return of the King

Wisdom for the Heart / Dr. Stephen Davey

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December 20, 2023 12:00 am

Peace is not only a desire during the Christmas season but is a longing of the world throughout the year. Global peace is possible, but it will only take place when the Prince of Peace returns to set up His kingdom on earth. Sadly, our world often attempts to solve global problems ignoring or rejecting the solutions given by the Creator of the world, the Prince of Peace. Fortunately, the God of the heavens and earth provides us with a future plan -- a Kingdom filled with peace, joy, and comfort for 1,000 years and beyond! Access the complete series here: https://www.wisdomonline.org/the-king-is-here

 

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This quotation from Isaiah about global peace only takes place when the Prince of Peace comes back and sets up his glorious kingdom of which we have sung today.

You can't experience the middle part of these verses without the rest of these verses. Our world desperately wants to solve the problems of the world without acknowledging the creator of the world. The missing peace to world, peace is the Prince of Peace. Peace is not only a desire during the Christmas season, but it's the longing of the world throughout the year. Global peace is possible, but it'll only take place when the Prince of Peace returns to set up his kingdom on earth.

Sadly, our world attempts to solve global problems by ignoring or rejecting the solutions given by the creator of the world. Fortunately, the God of the heavens and earth provides us with a future plan, a kingdom filled with peace, joy, and comfort for over a thousand years and beyond. Here's Stephen Davey with a message called The Return of the King. We have, as a church family, been addressing numerous prophecies related to the nature of this King.

Last Lord's Day, the names of the King revealed to us in Isaiah's great prophecy and the theme for today is The Return of the King. In the year 2020, the United Nations will, in fact, it has already begun announcing 17 sweeping goals, which they believe can be achieved in the next 10 years. By 2030, among them include goals like their number one goal, the ending of poverty, their second goal, the ending of world hunger, another goal to diminish disease, another goal to avoid wasting water, another goal to develop energy efficient practices, another goal to find ways to repurpose old materials, another to end discrimination, another to eliminate pollution, and on and on. I thought it was interesting as I read these 17 goals, recently the final two goals, which sort of sum it all up, were number 16, to build a world of peace and justice, and the final goal, to build partnerships between the governments of the world. These are admirable goals, many of them. Let's all work together to build a better society, a better world, a safer, cleaner, healthier, more efficient, better educated, more prosperous world. What is it in the heart of mankind that is that optimistic? These goals would ever be achieved.

And what's the missing piece, really, to making it happen? Well, the United Nations is actually geographically very close to the discovery. Just across the street from the United Nations building, literally, is a plaza. It's a quarter of an acre. It's called the United Nations Plaza.

The primary feature in that park or plaza is this towering monument. It's a granite wall built and dedicated in 1948, and carved into that granite wall is a prophecy. Believe it or not, it happens to be a quotation from the prophet Isaiah. The inscription reads this, they shall beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war anymore.

It's a great quotation, isn't it? It's from Isaiah chapter 2 and verse 4. About 30 years after this wall was built, around the mid-1970s, Isaiah's name was included etched into the bottom right.

You can barely make it out in this picture there at the bottom. They mentioned his name. They didn't give the reference. Maybe they were afraid people would look it up. But if you do look it up, you'll notice they actually cut the verse in half.

They left out the missing piece. They left off the fact that this will actually come true one day when the Lord returns to reign upon the earth in his coming kingdom. Following the tribulation as Israel is gathered and brought to repentance, the end of the tribulation period, he descends and with us sets up his kingdom to rule and reign. Let me read you this inscription from Isaiah chapter 2 in its fuller context if you go back a verse and then scoot ahead a verse.

It reads this and I've edited it a little bit, but here you go. Come, let us go up to the house of the God of Jacob, that he may teach us his ways, that we may walk in his paths. For out of Zion shall go forth the law and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.

He shall judge between the nations and he shall decide disputes for many peoples. And, here you go, they shall beat their swords into plowshares and their spears and their pruning hooks. Nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war anymore. Oh, house of Jacob, come let us walk in the light of the Lord. This quotation from Isaiah about global peace only takes place when the Prince of Peace comes back and sets up his glorious kingdom of which we have sung today with Jerusalem as his headquarters.

You can't experience the middle part of these verses without the rest of these verses. Our world desperately wants to solve the problems of the world without acknowledging the creator of the world. The missing peace to world, peace is the Prince of Peace. Now at Christmas we celebrate his birth. We know that was only the beginning because he grew up. And as I said already, as long as Jesus stays in that manger, the world is a little happier. We'd rather he stay there.

He's a bit too much trouble if he grows up. But he did, didn't he? Fully God, fully human, he really did die on a cross to pay the penalty for our sin. He really did rise from the dead. He really did ascend to the Father. Those are all prophecies of things that have occurred. The Bible doubles down on the prophecies that he will rapture the church, he will instigate judgment on the planet, he will win Israel back to repentance as a nation reconstituting them along with millions of other believers who during the tribulation refused the antichrist and then he will descend with the redeemed who are already with them, we the redeemed, and he will set up this literal kingdom. In fact there's an entire book of prophecies yet to be fulfilled. We call them the book of Revelation.

This is no secret. It's not like God is trying to keep the best from us, these future events. Now a decade ago we as a church family studied the book of Revelation. It took us three years on Sunday morning. Today I'm going to summarize it all in one sermon. This is another Christmas miracle for you. I'm really not going to, but I'm going to take a stab at it.

Think of it this way. There are 109 prophecies in the Old Testament that were literally fulfilled with the first coming of Jesus Christ. We've looked at a number of them over these last couple of Lord's days. 109 prophecies fulfilled in his first coming. There are 220 prophecies describing his second coming. When he returns to earth to set up his kingdom, it will precede the new earth and the new heavens. It will precede the eternal state. There is this kingdom where he will consummate his promises to Israel. It will be a declaration that Satan didn't win. It will also be a declaration that even with utopia, even with perfect conditions, mankind will still rebel against him and turn against him. But 220 prophecies, twice as many about his second coming.

Think about it this way. Here's a rather staggering statistic. In the Bible, there are 10 prophets that deliver these prophecies related to Christ's first coming. The prophecies came true very specifically, even down to the county where he'd be born, as we learned. The donkey right into Jerusalem upon the crucifixion, things he'd say from the cross, his resurrection, and on and on and on. But that came from 10 prophets. Thirty-six prophets speak about his second coming. It's as if God is saying, look, I gave you 10 so you wouldn't miss my son's first coming.

I'm giving you 36 so you don't miss his second coming. When you get to the New Testament, by the way, one out of every 25 verses on average refers to the second coming of Jesus Christ. There are nearly 2,000 references direct and indirect to the second coming of the Lord. The return of the king is one of the most dominant subjects of all of the Bible. And it isn't like God is trying to hide it from us.

He has given us passage after passage. Now, what do we know about this coming king and his kingdom? We've already seen in Isaiah's prophecy his kingdom capital city will be Zion. That's the holy city. That's Jerusalem. David prophesies in his 48th Psalm about the coming global reign of Messiah King. His glory literally emanates from Jerusalem. He writes, great is the Lord and greatly to be praised in the city of our God, beautiful in elevation. The prophets refer to the topographical changes as the kingdom is established where that region is elevated and the Father's house descends.

It's another sermon or two. But David goes on to say, beautiful in elevation, the joy of the whole earth. Is Jerusalem the joy of the whole earth today?

Not hardly. It has been and continues to be the center of tension and turmoil and unrest. It hasn't brought joy to the nations. That's because it isn't occupied as the capital city of the king because the king hasn't returned. The king is not reigning and ruling over all of the nations of the earth.

In fact, David never did that himself. The son of David will. But according to the Bible, when the king returns, those who have come to faith during the tribulation will enter the kingdom that he immediately establishes. In fact, Matthew 25 talks about that judgment, the goats and the sheep. The goats are sent to wait, await the final judgment. The sheep are those mortals who believe during the tribulation, who enter this kingdom.

There will be millions upon millions of them who believe during the tribulation. We, who are already with the Lord, having been raptured as a church, have been given our glorified, immortal bodies. We have this unique joy and privilege Paul prophesies as he writes to Timothy that we will reign with Christ.

To me, the older I get, the more staggering it becomes because the more unworthy I recognize I am. We'll return with him and his kingdom is described. In fact, let me give you several characteristics of this kingdom. It will be described as a kingdom of peace and prosperity, national and personal peace at last. Ezekiel 28, Isaiah chapter 2, which we've already looked at. There will be no need for a united nations because Jesus will unite the nations. Now nations have dedicated historically billions upon billions of dollars and manpower to design and prepare weapons of war that will no longer be any kind of expenditure in any national budget.

In the kingdom, no nation will have a defense budget, if you can imagine that. The nations will be under the control of the one who rules with a rod of iron, the Messiah King. Economic prosperity then, can you imagine the reallocation of those budgets in those kingdoms, those nations under the rule of Christ? World poverty will be that away.

World hunger will become a thing of the past. It'll be a time of great peace and prosperity. Secondly, it'll be a kingdom of glory.

The glory of God will literally be revealed and it will shine emanating from the throne of Christ upon that top tier in that father's house of 12 levels described for us by John. Isaiah chapter 24 and chapter 60 refer to the glorious kingdom. Zephaniah 3 refers to the kingdom of comfort.

The king will minister to every need. The prophets talk about the fullness of comfort in this kingdom. It'll be a kingdom furthermore of justice. Jeremiah 23, he's not talking about heaven. There will be no need for justice and just reign and judgments past in heaven.

There will be no sin in heaven. There will be sin in the kingdom from the mortals who enter and then they have children and grandchildren and great-grandchildren in this population explosion during the thousand year reign of Christ. Jeremiah 23 and Isaiah 32 talk about this reign of perfect balance in justice and righteousness. It'll be a kingdom of instruction and teaching.

Jeremiah 3 and Micah 4. We tend to overlook the fact that there's going to be a flurry of activity in this manner. I might point out, in fact, let me pause here for a moment or two and explain who is actually living and enjoying the millennial kingdom. Here are the subjects of the coming kingdom. There are two categories of people in this thousand year reign. The immortals and the mortals. The prophecies of scripture reveal that the immortals will include the Old Testament believers who are resurrected to join with Israel that is reconstituted in repentance of the coming of the Messiah. Zechariah says they will look upon him as he descends whom they pierced. Again, not a reference to heaven, but a reference to the establishment of the kingdom as Jesus descends.

This time not coming to the clouds for us, this time coming to earth with us. The immortals will reign over the mortals, but these immortals include Old Testament believers. So imagine, beloved, you're going to be able to enjoy the company and the fellowship with these Old Testament saints. You're going to be able to get to know, during this thousand year kingdom, Old Testament believers like Esther and Ruth and Boaz and Abraham and David and Nehemiah and Job.

You know, one of the reasons I'm convinced I'm not going to talk about, nor will you, our aches and pains while we were here on earth is because we're afraid Job is going to overhear us. Now let me go back to the kingdom. There's another characteristic I'd give you and it is the removal of the curse, Isaiah 11. Our planet, the animal kingdom, will experience a return to the garden of eating conditions.

We already talked about the animals, children are going to play with. The kingdom, furthermore, is going to be marked by the absence of disease. Those mortals who enter the kingdom will be healed miraculously. The kingdom, furthermore, will be a kingdom with a unified language.

Zephaniah chapter 3 and verse 9. The effects of the Tower of Babel will be reversed. The Bible doesn't tell us, so don't come up afterward and ask me which language that is because we don't know, but what we do know is that those who live in the north will finally be able to understand those who live in the south. It'll be a kingdom, furthermore, marked by the ministry of the Holy Spirit in unusual ways.

Joel chapter 2, Isaiah 32, Ezekiel 11, the glory of the Lord and the knowledge of the Lord literally flooding the human race. It'll be a kingdom of brilliant color and beauty. John describes heaven which is the Father's house descending. It'll descend, some believe, it'll rest on that raised topography, on that holy mount, which I believe it will, others believe it hovers above it. And then after the Lord, Peter prophesies, destroys the earth and recreates a new earth and a new universe, it will settle in Jerusalem.

Jesus will rule on that top level. It's a twelve level house, twelve foundations, John describes, this massive city. We call it the heavenly city. If you die today, this is where you're going. We can't imagine, frankly, the dimensions of this city.

We have some specifications given to us. It's difficult, however, because we're not sure how long a Roman mile is to this day, a stadia. But at best guess, it looks like this city, this house is 11 miles square and 11 miles high, which is how high the atmosphere is, interestingly enough. So if you sat at the Father's house right next to Mount Everest, it would dwarf it. The little speck of red to the right is the Tower of Dubai, tallest structure on earth right now.

It could fit in the first level with plenty of room to spare. By the way, this is where the believer is told by Jesus in John 14. This is the place where you will dwell. He says, in my Father's house are many what? Well, mansions. We all quit the King James version, and so we kind of think of, I've got a big one waiting for me and one down the street, and maybe mine is going to be a shack.

I'm afraid of that one. Well, that word, mansions, is a little unfortunate, means rooms, dwelling, places. You could literally translate it as states. In the Father's house are many estates. You have an estate, a dwelling place that Jesus has designed for you. During the Millennial Kingdom, this will be your home. It will also serve as the capital building of the kingdom. It's described as an incredibly beautiful, opulent place. Its doors are pearls sliced in half. Its streets are gold. It's lavishly decorated with gemstones.

An artist shows one level of the Father's house resting in Jerusalem during the Millennial Kingdom. Gives you a little perspective of this house. It's a big house.

It's a big house. The foundation stones in the city are described by John, some translated as decorations upon the foundation stones. Others take it as these are the foundation stones, which would make them the size of train cars.

I would throw my hat in on that translation. So if you could imagine these massive gemstones, you have the red-tinted jasper. You have the deep blue sapphire. You have the dazzling emerald.

You have the teal-blue beryl, the golden-green topaz John gives us, the pale violet jacinth, the rich purple amethyst, and more. I mean, this is what we buy in little bitty chips at Christmas time. Why? Because we want to be in debt?

No. Because we want to express our love for our beloved. And you are worthy of this gem.

And I wish I could get you one that's bigger. This is what God is expressing. I'm going to lavish upon you, whom I love, gems like you can't imagine. Imagine the brilliant light of God's glory reflecting and refracting on these gemstones and these golden streets.

It'll be like living in a rainbow of unbelievable breathtaking color. Let me give you one more characteristic of the kingdom. When the king returns, it'll be a kingdom marked by one particular word that's repeated by several prophets, a distinguishing mark.

It is, in a word, a kingdom of joy. Isaiah writes of this coming kingdom, which will, among other things, transform the land of Israel. But here's God's promise. This hasn't happened yet.

It's going to. The Lord will comfort Zion, comfort all her mounds of ruins. He says, I'll transform her dead ground into the garden of Eden, her moonscape into the garden of God, a place filled with joy and gladness, thankful voices and melodic song. We're not even in heaven yet, but this kingdom is so glorious for those of us who are secure and reigning with them.

This word keeps coming up. It is a kingdom of joy. With that, we conclude this message and this series.

You're listening to Wisdom for the Heart. Stephen Davies' lesson today was entitled The Return of the King, and it was the third and final sermon in the series called The King is Here. We've taken this series and packaged it as a set of CDs that you can add to your library of biblical resources.

It's also available as a digital download that you can play on your computer or phone. If you'd like to add The King is Here to your collection, call us today at 866-48-BIBLE or go to wisdomonline.org. Once again, our number is 866-48-BIBLE and our website is found at wisdomonline.org. We're getting close to Christmas and then a new year. It's a time when people often think about their future and make plans.

Here's something for you to consider in 2024. One of Stephen's passions is training and equipping men and women for service to God. That's why he founded and serves as the president of Shepherd's Theological Seminary. Graduates of Shepherd's Seminary are serving God in their churches and communities all over the world. Many men have earned their degrees from the school and have gone out to plant churches. There may be a church near you that's pastored by an STS graduate. If you or someone you know is interested in graduate level theological training, I encourage you to consider STS. We have many people who just take a class or two.

They want to have a better understanding of the Bible and theology. Even if God has not called you to serve him full-time in Christian ministry, the classes STS offers will help you and you don't have to relocate. All of the courses have an online option as well. You can join in with a class of students from wherever you are. If you want to study in person, there are classes offered here in Cary, North Carolina, in Laramie, Wyoming, and in Bryan, Texas. There are also clusters of students who gather together at local churches to take classes together. There are clusters in Birmingham, Alabama, Lincoln, Nebraska, and more. Our nation and the world need people who are equipped to interpret and teach God's Word faithfully. Stephen and the faculty of STS want to invest in you. Go to wisdomonline.org forward slash STS for information. Join us next time for more Wisdom for the Heart. I'll see you next time.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-12-20 00:50:12 / 2023-12-20 00:59:19 / 9

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