Almighty God, the one true God, created the universe. He created the earth: then He put man on the earth and actually gave him rule over it. He also made man His companion and friend.
But the evil forces, satan, deceived man and took dominion over the earth by tempting Adam and Eve, the first man and woman, to disobey the command of God. When man yielded to temptation he brought sin into the world. Because God is good perfect, He cannot fellowship with sinful man; thus man separated himself from God. Furthermore, satan snatched the dominion over the earth from Adam and became the ruler over the earth.
God is a good and perfect God. He is merciful, but His also just. He had told Adam that if Adam disobeyed Him, the punishment would be death and eternal separation from God. Death would come to the physical body, and the spirit (which can never die) would be cast into darkness and loneliness, eternally under the domination of evil forces-a terrible domination for man who was created to be a friend of God.
But God loved the man whom He had created, and He knew all things before they happened. So long ago He made a plan whereby man could be brought back into the presence of Almighty God, and the power of satan would be destroyed.
Thus God put a redeeming plan into effect. Thousand of years ago the Spirit of God cause holy prophets to write the Good New-that the only begotten Son of God would one day come to the earth and actually take the punishment for man, so that man might be restored to the favour of God. Through this plan, when our lives are finished on earth, we will go to live in the Kingdom of Heaven where God rules and reigns.
Thus more than 2,000 years ago, Jesus the SON of God, was born of a virgin into the world, and He loved man just as God His Father des. Because of His great love for every man, including you and me, He was willing to suffer death in our place. He took the punishment that was to come upon us, and God forgave us for Christ’s sake. Not because we deserve it, but because our creator loves us.
False religious leaders saw how the people were drawn to Jesus and how they worshiped Him. They became so jealous and envious that they put Him to death by crucifixion. They did not know that in so doing they were fulfilling the awesome plan which would redeem man from his falling state.
So in the spirit and soul of Christ were placed the sins of the entire world from the beginning to the end. In the terrible agony of that hour, when Christ took the sins and sorrow of the world upon Himself, God turned His face from His Son. Because God cannot look upon sin, He turned away even from His only begotten Son, so that even Christ Himself cried out, “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?”
Christ paid the penalty of death and separation from God so that man once again could have fellowship with God. When Christ had finished His work, He arose from the grave after three days, He talked with many of His followers and disciples and told them again that all who would accept Him as savior and Lord would find that He would come and dwell in their hearts.
Then, as He was talking to His disciples, He ascended into Heaven where He sits at the right hand of the Farther. But before Christ ascended into Heaven, He made another great and startling promise: He said He would come again and take those who are living and watching for Him, to Heaven! In other words, some may die before Jesus returns, but will instantly be taken to Heaven and given a perfect and immortal body-not the one we now have. Even before Jesus revealed this event to His followers, some of the great of old prophesied of this second coming of the Son of God (even before Christ had come the first time).
From these prophecies and from the words of Christ, we can know of the many signs which show that His coming is very near. When He will returns for those who believe and trust in Him, the bible tells us those still on earth will go through seven years of great tribulation as satan, in revenge and ager, unleashes his terrible evil upon the earth. He will have his own ruler, called the antichrist, who will kill many who want to live for Christ. After seven years Christ will set up the Kingdom of God on earth. Satan will be bound; wars will cease; and golden age of history will begin. Those who faithfully live for God and look for Jesus’ return will live with God forever and rule with Him in His Kingdom.
A careful study of the bible reveals much information concerning the time of Christ’s return. Although no one is to know the day or the hour, no not angels, neither Christ Himself, but only the Father “32 But of that day and that hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father.” (Mark 13:32), God’s people are to know the times and the seasons, fort the day is not to overtake them unawares as thief, “4 But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief.” (1 Thess. 5:4).
Yet even the closet followers of Christ were not altogether clear as to the time the Lord would return. Some though He would come back in their lifetime. However, Christ taught that the time of His absence would be long. He declared His going away would be as a man “travelling into a far country” who would return “after a long time” “14 ¶ For the kingdom of heaven is as a man travelling into a far country, who called his own servants, and delivered unto them his goods…19 After a long time the lord of those servants cometh, and reckoneth with them.” (Matt. 25:14, 19).