How Will “Every Eye See” Jesus at his Second Coming?

How Will “Every Eye See” Jesus at his Second Coming? December 15, 2023

There are several end times Bible prophecies that suggest advanced technology will be utilized at that time which, of course, was unknown to those prophets of antiquity who so declared. One group of such prophecies is about the second coming of Christ.

Isaiah the prophet uttered several prophecies about the end of the age and beginning of the new age, what Jews and Jesus called the world to come. For example, Isaiah declares, “How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of the messenger who announces peace, who brings good news, who announces salvation, who says to Zion, ‘Your God reigns.’ Listen! Your sentinels lift up their voices, together they sing for joy; for in plain sight they see the return of the LORD to Zion. Break forth together into singing you ruins of Jerusalem; for the LORD has comforted his people, he has redeemed Jerusalem. The LORD has bared his holy arm before the eyes of all the nations; and all the ends of the earth shall see the salvation of our God” (Isaiah 52.7-10 NRSV).

End times Bible prophecies are like a big jigsaw puzzle having thousands of pieces scattered about. I wrote perhaps the only book ever published, Warrior from Heaven, which is an attempt to arrange all of these texts in chronological order and write about them in narrative form in the present tense, as if those events were occurring presently.

Experts often claim the Bible consists of about 25% or more of prophecies about the future. For example, Dr. J. Barton Payne–who taught at Wheaton College and Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, both located in the Chicago area–claims in his magisterial Encyclopedia of Biblical Prophecy (p. 681) that there are 8,352 verses in the Bible that represent “predictive prophecy” and that they account for 27% of the Christian Bible.

So, in quoting any of these end times Bible prophecies, such as Isaiah 52.7-10 above, readers often have difficulty understanding their meaning unless they have some knowledge of a chronological framework in which to fit these pieces as in the puzzle. For instance, Isaiah mentions the “ruins of Jerusalem” during that end of the age. Indeed, several Old Testament prophets predict that at the end of the age, all the nations’ militaries will assault the nation of Israel to destroy it (e.g., Isaiah 29.7-8; Ezekiel 38–39; Joel 3.2, 12; Zechariah 12.2-9; 14.1-2). And it will be turned into ruins right before Jesus returns to deliver Israel.

The apostle Paul cites Isaiah 52.7 in Romans 10.15 and applies it universally to refer to any messenger of the Christian gospel. But I think all of Isaiah 52.7-10 applies particularly to Jesus as the messenger. For Zechariah prophesies of Jesus at his return, “On that day his feet shall stand on the Mount of Olives” (Zech 14.4). And forty days after Jesus resurrection from the dead, he ascended from the Mount Olives as two angels appeared and said to his apostles, who were gazing at his departure, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking up toward heaven? This Jesus, who has been taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven” (Acts 1.11). Thus, Jesus will appear in the sky and come down on the Mount of Olives at his second coming.

Furthermore, in Isaiah 52.10, God baring “his holy arm” is a metaphor that Isaiah elsewhere applies to the Messiah (e.g., Isaiah 40.10; 53.1; cf. 30.30; 59.16; 63.5). But how will “the LORD” bare “his holy arm,” Messiah Jesus, “before all the ends of the earth” so that all of earth’s people “shall see the salvation of our God”? I suggest that at that time–which I believe is still generations off in the future–all people around the globe will have cell phones, or some technological device much better, in which to see what is happening in the State of Israel on its Mount of Olives just outside Jerusalem. And I think this is indicated in other biblical prophecies about Jesus’ second coming.

For instance, the prophet Zechariah predicts that when Jesus returns to the Mount of Olives, all Jews throughout Israel will “look on the one whom they have pierced,” meaning that their ancestors were responsible in getting Jesus killed, and “they shall mourn for him” (Zechariah 12.10). The author of the Gospel of John cites this text and applies it to Jesus as “the one whom they have pierced,” meaning at the time of his crucifixion (John 19.37). Thus, this prophesy of Zechariah can have more than one application to Jesus, meaning that it applies both to his first coming and his second.

The author of the last book in the Bible, the book of Revelation, probably alludes to Zechariah 12.10 and other texts when he says of Jesus’ second coming, “Look! He is coming with the clouds, every eye will see him, even those who pierced him, and on his account all the tribes of the earth will wail” (Revelation 1.7). “Earth” translates ges in the Greek text. It can be translated “land” and thus refer to the twelve tribes of the land of Israel wailing, as in Zechariah 12.10, and I think this is the most likely meaning. Again, “every eye will see him” likely indicates all Jews living in the land of Israel at that time will see Jesus at his coming, which may be via an electronic device or better.

Perhaps the most well known biblical text about this is that uttered by Jesus to his apostles in his Olivet Discourse, which is all about the future. He said therein about his second coming, “The sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from heaven and the powers of the heaven [should be “heavens”] will be shaken. Then the sign of the Son of Man,” referring to Jesus himself, “will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory” (Matthew 24.29-30). Need I say more?

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