(From: The Hope Of Christs Second Coming, by Samuel Tregelles, Appendix F)
It may be well to point out the force of the passages which speak of the Lord’s coming “as a thief in the night”, which, we are constantly told, prove that the Lord intends His true saints to regard His advent as momentarily imminent. Such passages occur at Mtt 24:43; Lk 12:39, 40; 1 Thess 5:2; 2 Pet 3:10; and, Rev 16:15.
With regard to them all, it may be remarked that the emblem of “a thief” is obviously used to indicate not merely the unexpectedness of the coming, but its unwelcomeness! Further, this emblem implies the advent of one who comes to take away, not to give something to those whom he visits, for “the thief cometh not but for to steal, to kill, and to destroy.”
These considerations are surely sufficient by themselves to show at the first glance that it is not the Lord’s coming in its relation to the true believer, to him who “loves His appearing,” and to whom “grace shall be brought at the revelation of Jesus Christ,” that is indicated, but its relation to the false professor of the Name of Jesus, the “evil servant,” whose words in the parable, “My lord delayeth his coming,” show that he neither expected his lord’s return nor desired it. Read the rest of this entry »