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Bible Study on the True Meaning of the Coming of the Son of Man
By Wu Wen, Italy
Many brothers and sisters in the Lord eagerly wait for the Lord to return and think that the Lord will come in His resurrected spiritual body descending with the clouds. Because the Bible says, “You men of Galilee, why stand you gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as you have seen Him go into heaven” (Act 1:11), “Behold, He comes with clouds” (Rev 1:7). Most people wait for the Lord to suddenly descend with the clouds one day. For thousands of years, Christians have longed for it so.
But if you are one who knows the Bible well, you must know that the verses concerning the Lord’s return are hardly limited to just these verses. The Lord also said: “Be you therefore ready also: for the Son of man comes at an hour when you think not” (Luk 12:40). “But of that day and hour knows no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but My Father only. But as the days of Noah were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be” (Mat 24:36–37). “For as the lightning comes out of the east, and shines even to the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be” (Mat 24:27). When prophesying about God’s appearance in the last days, the Lord Jesus mentioned “the Son of man comes” and “the coming of the Son of man,” obviously, in order to tell us that He would return in the last days in the form of the Son of man. Then what, after all, is “the Son of man”? It isn’t hard to understand. The Son of man is born to a human, has emotions of joy, anger, sorrow, and happiness, lives like anyone else…. Jehovah God is the Spirit and so cannot be called the Son of man; the resurrected Lord Jesus is a spiritual body and so cannot be called the Son of man; angels are spiritual beings and so cannot be called the Son of man either. The incarnated Lord Jesus is called the Son of man, because He was born to Mary, had brothers and sisters and a normal family, and underwent a normal growth process. Besides possessing normal humanity, He also has the divine substance which we humans don’t possess, being able to express the truth, bestow upon man the way of repentance, resurrect the dead, perform many signs and wonders, and finally save the whole of mankind from sins by being nailed to the cross for man. Therefore, that the Lord Jesus prophesied many times that the Son of man would come in the last days means that when He returns in the last days, God will be like the Lord Jesus, being born to a human, expressing the truth and doing the work of salvation of man in the flesh.
Besides, the Lord Jesus also said: “For as the lightning, that lightens out of the one part under heaven, shines to the other part under heaven; so shall also the Son of man be in His day. But first must He suffer many things, and be rejected of this generation” (Luk 17:24–25). These words of the Lord are greater proof that He will return as the Son of man in the last days. His glorious spiritual body is too supernatural, can descend from heaven, and can appear before us at will and then disappear at will, and walk through walls. No common person is capable of such feats. Not only is He able to perform signs and wonders, but anything He says will also immediately come true. If the Lord Jesus were to descend in this kind of spiritual body in the last days, believers and unbelievers would all follow Him. If so, how will these words of the Lord be fulfilled? And how could He be rejected by this generation? Only when He becomes the Son of man that can be seen and has normal humanity, will people dare to condemn and reject Christ relying on man’s notions and imaginations. Just as when the Lord Jesus did His work, the Pharisees and the Jews who followed them judged whether the Lord Jesus was the Messiah or not only from His appearance, but didn’t seek His work and words, so they dared to abandon and resist Him at will, and even nailed Him to the cross. They committed a heinous crime, so they were subjected to the punishment of God. Isn’t this a fact?
Some people wonder that if God appears in the flesh, how will the prophecies in the Bible of the Lord’s public descent with the clouds be fulfilled? In fact, this is an easy question to answer. The Lord’s words are trustworthy. Prophecies about God coming in secret will be fulfilled, and so will those about God coming openly with clouds. Then, how will all these prophecies be realized? Those familiar with the Bible all know that when the Lord returns in the last days, He will do the work of sorting people according to their kind, and of rewarding good and punishing evil. That is, He will separate the sheep from the goats, the good from the wicked servants and the wheat from the tares, and then save all those who belong to God and punish all evil people. If God first appeared openly, everyone would tremble in great fear, no one would dare to resist Him, and the good and the bad would all believe in God. This way, the wheat and tares, the good servants and bad servants, the true believers and false believers would fail to be revealed. This is why God will first come secretly as the Son of man and express His words. Those that love and pursue the truth and are able to recognize God’s voice and accept God’s work are the objects of God’s salvation, while those that abandon and slander God and resist and condemn God’s work are naturally exposed as wicked people, God’s enemies. Then, God will appear openly on a cloud and reward good and punish evil in accordance with every person’s deeds. Those who have accepted God’s work of the last days and been purified by God will be brought into God’s kingdom, whereas those who rebel against and resist God will receive God’s righteous punishment. Thus, there will be made manifest a vision of the wailing of all kindreds. As the Bible prophesies, “And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn” (Mat 24:30). Such are the steps of God’s work in the last days and this is the wisdom of God’s work.
Through the above fellowship, we know the true meaning of the coming of the Son of man, and also know that when the Lord returns, He’ll incarnate as the Son of man first, coming in secret, and then appear on a cloud. So, if we want to welcome the Lord’s return, we must first welcome the descent of the Son of man, and only in this way can we keep up with God’s work and obtain God’s salvation.
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