"JESUS WILL COME AGAIN"
"…I will come again, and receive you unto Myself…" (Jn. 14.3)
INTRO.: A song which indicates that the church is the bride of Christ for which He will come again and which He will receive unto Himself is "Jesus Will Come Again" (#166 in Sacred Selections for the Church). The text was written by Mrs. W. S. Stroud. Little else is known about her except that she lived in Atlanta, GA, and assisted in the editing of hymnbooks produced by Samuel H. Hall and the composer of the tune, Flavil Joseph Hall (1876-1952). I have never been able to find a date for the song. It is listed in the index of The Cross and Resurrection in Song Revised and Enlarged, edited by the Halls in 1927, at #29, but it is not there; it may have been used in the original 1920 edition but replaced in the later one without a change being made in the index. Among hymnbooks published by members of the Lord’s church during the twentieth century for use in churches of Christ, it appeared in the 1921 Great Songs of the Church (No. 1) and the 1937 Great Songs of the Church No. 2 both edited by E. L. Jorgenson. To my knowledge, it may be found today only in Sacred Selections.
The song refers to the church of Christ as His bride.
I. Stanza 1 says that the husband of the bride is our Shepherd
"Jesus is our loving Shepherd, And He is a faithful guide;
He is coming back from heaven For the church of Christ, His bride."
A. Jesus is the great Shepherd who guides His sheep: Jn. 10.14-18, 27-29
B. The basic message of the New Testament is that He is coming back from heaven someday: Acts 1.11
C. One purpose for His return is to receive the church of Christ, His bride: 2 Cor. 11.2, Rev. 19.7-9
II. Stanza 2 says that the husband of the bride is coming back as He promised
"We are watching now, and waiting, For the coming of the Lord;
He is coming for His loved ones, As He promised in His word."
A. The bride is watching and waiting for the Lord’s return: 1 Thes. 1.9-10
B. When He comes for His loved ones, He will raise the dead, change the living, and gather them together in the clouds to be with Him forever: 1 Thess. 4.16-17
C. This He Himself has promised in His word: Matt. 25.31, Jn. 5.28-29
III. Stanza 3 says that the husband of the bride is coming to gather up His jewels
"Yes, He’s coming back from glory, Coming to this world again;
He will gather up His jewels, Safely kept in His own name."
A. Again, it is emphasized throughout the New Testament that Christ is coming back: 2 Pet. 3.10-13
B. Some might object to the wording of this stanza, "Coming to this world again," but the song does not necessarily say that He will actually come to stand on the literal planet, but simply that He will come back to this world to receive His children: 1 Cor. 15.23, 51-54
C. Then, He will "gather up His jewels," a picture that is often used poetically to refer to Christ taking those who will figuratively make up His joy and crown: Phil. 4.1
CONCL.: The chorus reemphasizes the fact that Jesus is coming again.
"He has promised all the faithful That He’ll come to earth again,
And to glory will receive them, Evermore with Him to reign."
Some might also object to the chorus which says, "That He’ll come to earth again." Ellis J. Crum of Sacred Selections solved this "problem" in dealing with another one of his pet peeves, that any mention of the saints reigning with Christ in glory must be premillennial in spite of the fact that Rev. 22.5 depicts them in the eternal city and says, "They shall reign forever and ever," by altering the the wording to read, "That a home to them He’ll give…Evermore with Him to live." However, again, even the chorus does not actually affirm that He will step foot on the earth but simply that He will come back to this earth to take His people to their home in glory. The church as the bride of Christ certainly needs to be reminded that "Jesus WIll Come Again."