Read: Matthew 24:36-39
“But concerning that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father only. For as were the days of Noah, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. For as in those days before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day when Noah entered the ark, and they were unaware until the flood came and swept them all away, so will be the coming of the Son of Man.”
Since the first century, followers of Christ have been anticipating the return of Christ. At the end of the Revelation, John wrote, “Come quickly Lord Jesus (Revelation 22:20). So, it is logical that we would ask the question, when?
Earlier in the chapter, Jesus gave plenty of signs to watch for, but in the verses above He reveals that only the Father knows the exact day and hour, but that doesn’t mean we should not be expecting His return. How many people are really expecting the return of Christ? According to Jesus, not many. He gives us the example of Noah (evidently Jesus believed in the Flood). Until the very end, the people of Noah’s day lived their lives with absolutely no regard for the coming judgment even though Noah warned the people for more than one hundred years!
Jesus went on to describe His return this way-
“Then two men will be in the field; one will be taken and one left. Two women will be grinding at the mill; one will be taken and one left. Therefore, stay awake, for you do not know on what day your Lord is coming. But know this, that if the master of the house had known in what part of the night the thief was coming, he would have stayed awake and would not have let his house be broken into. Therefore you also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect” (Matthew 24:40-42).
How should we respond to Jesus’ challenge? How do we stay awake? I remember hearing someone (don’t remember who) say that we should read the newspaper in one hand and our Bible in the other. Don’t fall asleep.