Look at Titus 2:12–14. It says, ‘We wait for the blessed hope – the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ.’ What does that lead to? We are waiting for the second coming, which is called the blessed hope, and that creates a people who are ‘eager to do what is good,’ passionate to do what is good; and, it says in verse 12, who are able to lead upright lives.
Let me pull all this together quickly. Do you think that if you believe in the return of Jesus Christ – a visible, personal, historical event in the future – that that makes you somebody like the people who stand on the street corner with a ‘The end is near!’ sign? For some reason they never shave; you feel like it is because they don’t really care what happens to this world because it is going to end any moment. So, if you believe in the second coming of Jesus Christ that could come any time, does that mean that you don’t care about this world? No, not at all.
When the Bible brings up the second coming of Christ, and by the way it does a lot – in the New Testament, it is mentioned close to three hundred times; one out of every thirteen verses is about the second coming – but it is never brought up to get you to speculate about the end. Jesus says that when he was on earth, even he didn’t know when the second coming was going to happen (Matthew 24:36). The whole point of bringing up the second coming – whenever it is brought up by Paul or John or Jesus or whoever – is always to get you passionate about living now, passionate about living here.
*Quote taken from Dr. Keller’s sermon, “Hope For Your Work”, 25 October 2009