Weekly Pastoral Message prepared by Rev. Murray Adamthwaite
for Sunday 13th December 1998
From the Pastor: Christ has Come and is Coming II
"Let not your heart be troubled ... I will come again." John 14:1,3|
Christmas is very often regarded as a family occasion: relatives and friends
come whom one never sees at other times, or rarely so; and even for close
family members it is a great time for togetherness. Then comes the end:
Christmas is over for another year and the relatives and friends must go.
If it has been a wonderful time while it lasted there will be sadness when
the time of parting comes, but one simple message affords some consolation,
i.e. "See you next year!"
Another familiar scene on our landscape is that of new houses or display
homes: much money and labour is spent on both the buildings and the
landscape. While time and deadlines may be important, the overriding factor
is attractiveness and beauty: the new homes must be eminently desirable
for habitation and as a showpiece to those around.
After more than three years of close association with His disciples, Christ
announced on the night before He died that He was going away
(John 14:3; 16:5,10). The notice brought consternation from the disciple
band, as well as bewilderment, but Christ assured them that He would
return and in the meantime He would be with them by His Spirit. The
latter's task in the world was to convict of "sin ... righteousness and
... judgment" John 16:8, which has been taking place ever since and will
until the time of that glorious return. While this is familiar teaching
to Christians, a point not often grasped is that as surely as He came into
the world, for the specific mission to reprove the unbelieving world
and to save sinners, so just as surely and of necessity He will come
again. He has gone to prepare a place, and when that is done He will come
for those who have loved Him in this world. These dwelling places will
far outshine the most splendid display homes to be seen in any suburban
estate, but far exceeding even that is that the Christian will be with
Hence as we look at Christmas with all its materialism and big spending,
it is a time to reflect on the world to come and the "mansions of glory"