Behold, I Come Quickly – C. Russell Yates –
Six times in Revelation Jesus says He is coming quickly, e.g. “And, behold, I come quickly, and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be” (Revelation 22:12). So what does “come quickly” mean? I’ll illustrate using the example of a pregnancy.
For nine months the baby is gestating until the time of delivery draws near. Once the birth pains start they become more intense and more frequent. If the baby could talk, he would say, “Behold, I come quickly.”
After His ascension, Jesus said He would return. He gave signs that would precede His return, but He didn’t specify the exact time. He did say, “No man knows the day or the hour.” Should Christians just wait until it happens or does the Lord encourage a readiness on our part? Let’s examine some passages. (Italics are my emphasis.)
Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing. (2 Timothy 4:8)
For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night. … But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief. (1 Thessalonians 5:2,4)
So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation. (Hebrews 9:28)
Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching. (Hebrews 10:25)
And now, little children, abide in him; that, when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming. (1 John 2:28)
Scripture is loaded with passages that encourage Believers to joyfully watch and wait for Christ’s return. For forty years now I’ve looked for the Rapture-while going about the business of life! “Behold, I come quickly,” is a passage the Lord quickened to me in the night, so let me continue my investigation.
God Doesn’t Forget
The Lord has a habit of making promises, and then waiting a long time before keeping them.
* He promised Abraham He would make of him a great nation. Then He waited until Abraham was 100 and Sarah was 90 before sending Isaac.
* He promised Canaan as Abraham’s inheritance. Then he sent the Israelites into Egypt where they became slaves. After 400 years he sent Moses to deliver them.
* At the Red Sea, the Israelites were trapped between the sea and the Egyptian army. The Lord parted the waters. The Israelites passed safely, but the Egyptians were drowned.
* After the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 AD the Jews were dispersed throughout the world. Long ago the prophets foretold a re-gathering to their homeland-it happened on May 14, 1948.
Thy Kingdom Come
We Christians pray, “Thy Kingdom Come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven…” For what are we praying? We are praying for the Millennial Kingdom, which follows the Rapture, the Tribulation, the Second Coming, and the defeat of the Antichrist.
Most of us Christians are much more concerned about our little kingdoms than we are about the kingdom of God. Furthermore, we don’t want to be interrupted by the Second Coming. I offer the following illustration as a warning.
When Sodom was destroyed, the angels told Lot and his wife to flee for their lives and to not look behind. Lot’s wife looked back, and she was turned into a pillar of salt. How did she fail? She didn’t want to be interrupted.
In Luke 17, we are told the coming of the Lord will be as it was in the days of Noah and the days of Lot. The second shortest verse in the Bible is Luke 17:32, Jesus said, “Remember Lot’s Wife.” I take that as a warning to Christians who pray the Lord’s Prayer but don’t want to be interrupted by its fulfillment.
Israel God’s Timepiece
The Jews were chosen to reveal God to mankind. From Noah’s son Shem descended Abraham-see Genesis 11. From then until the end, the Bible is focused on the Jews. Jesus is a Jew. Except for Luke and Acts, Jewish men wrote the Bible. God made the following promise to Abraham:
Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father’s house, unto a land that I will shew thee:
And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing:
And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed. (Genesis 12:1-3)
Verse 3 contains a blessing for those who bless Israel and a curse for the anti-Semites. Israel was restored as a nation in 1948. Before Israel was restored, the land was barren and sparsely populated. Ezekiel foretold the restoration.
But ye, O mountains of Israel, ye shall shoot forth your branches, and yield your fruit to my people of Israel; for they are at hand to come.
For, behold, I am for you, and I will turn unto you, and ye shall be tilled and sown:
And I will multiply men upon you, all the house of Israel, even all of it: and the cities shall be inhabited, and the wastes shall be builded: (Ezekiel 36:8-10)
And they shall say, This land that was desolate is become like the garden of Eden, and the desolate and ruined cities are become fenced and are inhabited. (Ezekiel 36:35)
Israel became a refuge for Holocaust survivors as told in Ezekiel 37, which is the “dry bones” chapter.
Then said he unto me, Prophesy unto the wind, prophesy, son of man, and say to the wind, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe upon these slain, that they may live.
So I prophesied as he commanded me, and the breath came into them, and they lived, and stood up upon their feet, an exceeding great army.
Then he said unto me, Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel: behold, they say, Our bones are dried, and our hope is lost: we are cut off for our parts.
Therefore prophesy and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, O my people, I will open your graves, and cause you to come up out of your graves, and bring you into the land of Israel. (Ezekiel 37:9-12)
The passages from Ezekiel 36 and 37 have been fulfilled. Israel became a prosperous and mighty nation. But since January 2020, the entire world has descended into chaos.
The Turning Point
At this time the world is enduring medical and economic problems along with lawlessness. The Middle East is gearing up for war. We may be in the home stretch of “Behold I Come Quickly.” Israel is still God’s Timepiece. Let’s consider the yet-to-be-fulfilled prophecies for Israel.
* The destruction of Damascus foretold in Isaiah 17:1.
* The battle of Gog and Magog foretold in Ezekiel 38-39.
* The rebuilding of the Temple in Jerusalem, and a return to animal sacrifices.
* The rise of the Antichrist.
* The signing of a seven-year peace treaty with the AC.
* The start of the seven-year Tribulation period.
* Christ will be revealed to the Jews-See Zach. 12:10.
* After the Tribulation, the Millennial Kingdom will begin.
Come quickly, Lord Jesus!
For more of Russell’s works: http://inhisimagegod.com/article/