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Old 07-18-2018, 10:39 PM
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The Son of Man and His Coming in Power

I am reposting this from another section of the forum which seems not to get much traction...

The Identity of the Son of Man in Daniel 7



Daniel 7 begins with a vision of several beasts. then we reach the following section:

I beheld till the thrones were cast down, and the Ancient of days did sit, whose garment was white as snow, and the hair of his head like the pure wool: his throne was like the fiery flame, and his wheels as burning fire. A fiery stream issued and came forth from before him: thousand thousands ministered unto him, and ten thousand times ten thousand stood before him: the judgment was set, and the books were opened. I beheld then because of the voice of the great words which the horn spake: I beheld even till the beast was slain, and his body destroyed, and given to the burning flame. As concerning the rest of the beasts, they had their dominion taken away: yet their lives were prolonged for a season and time.
(Daniel 7:9-12 KJV)

So this is a judgment scene, an eschatological vision of the divine Judgment against Israel's enemies by God.

I saw in the night visions, and, behold, one like the Son of man came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days, and they brought him near before him. And there was given him dominion, and glory, and a kingdom, that all people, nations, and languages, should serve him: his dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom that which shall not be destroyed.
(Daniel 7:13-14 KJV)

Next, he sees a man coming in the clouds of heaven, and being brought near the Ancient of Days. He receives the dominion, glory, and an everlasting universal kingdom.

I Daniel was grieved in my spirit in the midst of my body, and the visions of my head troubled me. I came near unto one of them that stood by, and asked him the truth of all this. So he told me, and made me know the interpretation of the things.
(Daniel 7:15-16 KJV)

So now we get to see the interpretation of the vision, not only of the beasts, but of the 'son of man' figure.

These great beasts, which are four, are four kings, which shall arise out of the earth. But the saints of the most High shall take the kingdom, and possess the kingdom for ever, even for ever and ever.
(Daniel 7:17-18 KJV)

The four beasts are identified as four kings, a metonymy for four kingdoms. The son of man figure is identified as 'the saints of the Most High'. Just as in the vision the son of man receives the kingdom for ever, in the interpretation the saints of God take the kingdom and possess it for ever.

Then I would know the truth of the fourth beast, which was diverse from all the others, exceeding dreadful, whose teeth were of iron, and his nails of brass; which devoured, brake in pieces, and stamped the residue with his feet; And of the ten horns that were in his head, and of the other which came up, and before whom three fell; even of that horn that had eyes, and a mouth that spake very great things, whose look was more stout than his fellows. I beheld, and the same horn made war with the saints, and prevailed against them; Until the Ancient of days came, and judgment was given to the saints of the most High; and the time came that the saints possessed the kingdom.
(Daniel 7:19-22 KJV)

Again, Daniel identifies, second time, the son of man figure in verse 13-14 with the the saints of the Most high. Judgment is given to the people of God, and they possess the kingdom.

Thus he said, The fourth beast shall be the fourth kingdom upon earth, which shall be diverse from all kingdoms, and shall devour the whole earth, and shall tread it down, and break it in pieces. And the ten horns out of this kingdom are ten kings that shall arise: and another shall rise after them; and he shall be diverse from the first, and he shall subdue three kings. And he shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time. But the judgment shall sit, and they shall take away his dominion, to consume and to destroy it unto the end. And the kingdom and dominion, and the greatness of the kingdom under the whole heaven, shall be given to the people of the saints of the most High, whose kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and all dominions shall serve and obey him.
(Daniel 7:23-27 KJV)

Again, the divinely provided interpretation is given that the son of man figure is a representation of the 'people of the saints of the Most high', ie the people of God. The dominion, the kingdom, and the 'greatness' (the glory) of the kingdom is given to them, as it was to the son of man figure in verses 13-14.

The conclusion then is that in Daniel 7, the 'one like unto the son of man' is a symbol of the saints of God. His appearance represents the eschatological victory of God's people over their enemies, including the fourth beast and the little horn. There is no hint here of any personal, individual son of man character, let alone a divinely pre-existing heavenly being known as 'the son of man'.

What is interesting, is that while Jesus makes numerous references to himself as 'the son of man' in the sense of 'me, a man', He does make a few references to himself as 'the son of man' in a manner that directly invokes Daniel 7 (Matthew 10:23, 13:41, 16:27-28, 19:28, 24:27,30,37,39,44, 25:13, 31, 26:64; Mark 8:38, 13:26, 14:62; Luke 9:26, 12:8(?),40, 17:22,24,40(?), 21:27,36, 22:69; John 1:51(?), 3:13(?), 5:27(?). note: the references in John's gospel are difficult: they seem to refer to an eschatological judgment role of the 'son of man' but there are obvious introductions of ideas not present in Daniel).

This seems to indicate several things:

First, Jesus referred to Himself as 'son of man' as an idiomatic expression meaning 'me or I, a man'. However, He used the third person to speak of Himself this way. Which leads to the next point,

Second, He introduces the ideas in Daniel 7 pertaining to the one like unto the son of man and applies them to Himself, thus indicating He claimed to be involved in fulfilling the same role the son of man figure does in Daniel. that is, He saw Himself as coming in judgment, with the clouds of heaven, to be situated 'at the right hand of power' near the Ancient of Days, to defeat all enemies, to receive an everlasting kingdom and dominion, etc.

Third, in the synoptics we are limited to a son of man motif that is restricted to an eschatological, post resurrection and post ascension victory. But in John we have an added concept of 'pre-existence in heaven'. In John, Christ speaks of the son of man having descended from heaven, and re-ascending to heaven 'where He was before'. This clearly indicates a development of thought or at least of emphasis. The Synoptics were concerned with presenting Jesus as the son of man who is coming in eschatological judgment and glory. John is concerned with presenting Jesus as the son of man who had some kind of divine origin, who descended to earth and ascended back to heaven, who gives eternal life. It is generally recognised that John's gospel was written toward the latter end of the of the first century, and represents a fuller development of Christology and of Christ's doctrines than the Synoptics. So John is interested in emphasising those sayings of Christ which just so happen to directly oppose and refute the Enochian and other Jewish mystical speculations concerning heavenly intercessors/mediators/persons, which also just so happen to develop toward the latter end of the first century.
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Old 07-18-2018, 10:39 PM
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Re: The Son of Man and His Coming in Power

The Apocalypse of Jesus Christ, aka the book of Revelation, also makes use of the 'son of man' phraseology.

I was in the Spirit on the Lord's day, and heard behind me a great voice, as of a trumpet, Saying, I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last: and, What thou seest, write in a book, and send it unto the seven churches which are in Asia; unto Ephesus, and unto Smyrna, and unto Pergamos, and unto Thyatira, and unto Sardis, and unto Philadelphia, and unto Laodicea. And I turned to see the voice that spake with me. And being turned, I saw seven golden candlesticks; And in the midst of the seven candlesticks one like unto the Son of man, clothed with a garment down to the foot, and girt about the paps with a golden girdle. His head and his hairs were white like wool, as white as snow; and his eyes were as a flame of fire; And his feet like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace; and his voice as the sound of many waters. And he had in his right hand seven stars: and out of his mouth went a sharp twoedged sword: and his countenance was as the sun shineth in his strength. And when I saw him, I fell at his feet as dead. And he laid his right hand upon me, saying unto me, Fear not; I am the first and the last: I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death.
(Revelation 1:10-18 KJV)

Here, Christ is identified as one 'like unto the son of man' - an obvious reference to Daniel 7. But here, this son of man figure is conflated with the Ancient of Days (hair white as snow, the first and last, etc). Thus, now, in the Revelation - generally accepted as being written after the Gospel of John - we have a further development that Christ, the eschatological son of man, is identified with the Ancient of Days.

And I looked, and behold a white cloud, and upon the cloud one sat like unto the Son of man, having on his head a golden crown, and in his hand a sharp sickle. And another angel came out of the temple, crying with a loud voice to him that sat on the cloud, Thrust in thy sickle, and reap: for the time is come for thee to reap; for the harvest of the earth is ripe. And he that sat on the cloud thrust in his sickle on the earth; and the earth was reaped.
(Revelation 14:14-16 KJV)

Here, immediately after a pronouncement of woe upon anyone who worships the image of the beast etc, we have a vision of one like the son of man on a cloud reaping the harvest of the earth, which is immediately followed by an angel reaping the grapes of wrath. So again we have some Danielic elements here identifying the son of man with judgment, both for the saints of God and immediately leading into a gathering of the wicked for judgment against the enemies of God and His people.

So again we see a development of the son of man concept. In Daniel the son of man is the people of God. In the Gospels the son of man is Jesus, and furthermore Jesus is identified as fulfilling a similar role to the son of man/people of God in Daniel. Also, we find the later developed idea that Christ is the heavenly son of man, that is, the son of man come down from heaven, and ascended back to heaven. And finally, in the Revelation, Christ as the heavenly, ascended, and eschatological son of man is identified in some sense with YHVH/the Ancient of Days himself.

And all of that leads in to the consideration of Christ as the representative Israel, as seen here:

And was there until the death of Herod: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, Out of Egypt have I called my son.
(Matthew 2:15 KJV)

When Israel was a child, then I loved him, and called my son out of Egypt.
(Hosea 11:1 KJV)

Israel was the son who was called out of Egypt, but this found a Christological fulfillment in Christ's own experiences. Thus, Christ is functioning as a representative of Israel. What is written concerning Israel finds it primary fulfillment in Christ, and applies to Israel by extension, that is, due to Israel's participation in Christ, their identification with Christ. So, Christ is the archetypal Israel. And thus, we can now better understand on what basis the son of man figure in Daniel - representing Israel in a collective sense - is identified with Christ in a personal sense.
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Old 07-18-2018, 10:40 PM
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Re: The Son of Man and His Coming in Power

The Bible clearly references multiple comings of the Lord, clear back in the Old Testament. Verse 30 (of Matthew ch 24) simply says they shall see the son of Man coming in the clouds of heaven. This makes me think of Daniel 7:13:
I saw in the night visions, and, behold, one like the Son of man came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days, and they brought him near before him.
(Daniel 7:13)
Here, we see the Son of Man "coming", we see the clouds of heaven, and yet He isn't coming to the earth, he is coming to the Ancient of Days. considering the language similarities between Dan 7:13 and Matthew 24:30, I'd say it's a good chance they are referring to the same thing. In which case Matthew 24:30 is not a "coming BACK" but a coming before the Ancient of Days.
And there was given him dominion, and glory, and a kingdom, that all people, nations, and languages, should serve him: his dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom that which shall not be destroyed.
(Daniel 7:14)
So it looks like He was to come before the Ancient of Days to receive a kingdom. So perhaps Matthew 24:30 isn't talking about a coming "back", in apposition to His ascension, but rather it seems like it is talking about His coming into His kingdom.
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Old 07-18-2018, 10:40 PM
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Re: The Son of Man and His Coming in Power

(cont.)
But Jesus held his peace. And the high priest answered and said unto him, I adjure thee by the living God, that thou tell us whether thou be the Christ, the Son of God. Jesus saith unto him, Thou hast said: nevertheless I say unto you, Hereafter shall ye see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.
(Matthew 26:63-64)
The word "hereafter" is apo arti, and literally means "from now":

Jesus said to him, You said it. I tell you more. From this time you shall see the Son of Man sitting off the right hand of power, and coming on the clouds of the heaven. Psa. 110:1; Dan. 7:13
(Literal Version, Matthew 26:64)
What's fascinating is the Literal Version actually references Daniel 7:13 here!

Anyway, Jesus told the priests gathered against Him that from that point on they would see Jesus at the right hand of power and coming in the clouds of heaven.
Jesus said to him, "You have said so. But I tell you, from now on you will see the Son of Man seated at the right hand of Power and coming on the clouds of heaven."
(Matthew 26:64 ESV)
So, from the time of His suffering and crucifixion they would see Him seated on the right hand of power and coming in/on (or with) the clouds of heaven. This does not seem to be talking about either a "second advent" or a "coming in judgment against Jerusalem" some 40 years later. This is talking about Messiah coming into His kingdom, just like Daniel 7:13 speaks about.

Verily I say unto you, There be some standing here, which shall not taste of death, till they see the Son of man coming in his kingdom.
(Matthew 16:28 KJV)
John Gill makes some interesting remarks on this verse:
till they see the Son of man coming in his kingdom; which is not to be understood of his personal coming in his kingdom in the last day, when he will judge quick and dead; for it cannot be thought, that any then present should live to that time, but all tasted of death long before, as they have done; for the story of John's being alive, and to live till then, is fabulous, and grounded on a mistake which John himself has rectified at the close of his Gospel: nor of the glorious transfiguration of Christ, the account of which immediately follows; when he was seen by Peter, James, and John, persons now present; for that, at most, was but an emblem and a pledge of his future glory: rather, of the appearance of his kingdom, in greater glory and power, upon his resurrection from the dead, and his ascension to heaven; when the Spirit was poured down in an extraordinary manner, and the Gospel was preached all over the world; was confirmed by signs and wonders, and made effectual to the conversion and salvation of many souls; which many then present lived to see, and were concerned in: though it seems chiefly to have regard to his coming, to show his regal power and authority in the destruction of the Jews; when those his enemies that would not he should reign over them, were ordered to be brought and slain before him; and this the Apostle John, for one, lived to be a witness of.
Gill of course does tie in the destruction of Jerusalem to it, but it is interesting that he also saw this as largely having to do with Christ coming into His kingdom. The entire period from His death and resurrection, through His ascension, through the outpouring of the Spirit, through the propagation of the gospel, through the conversion of the gentiles, all the way to the destruction of Jerusalem, all of it appears to be the evidences of Jesus Christ "coming" into His Kingdom, having been brought before the Ancient of Days and receiving the dominion and being seated at the right hand of power.

This may shed light on the "sign of the Son of man" appearing. The sign given to that generation was His death, burial, and resurrection. Every thing that happened after His resurrection was a vindication of His Messiahship. The destruction of Jerusalem for the sin of rejecting and killing the Messiah would be final proof or evidence of that "sign of Jonah", sealing the deal so to say. After the tribulation of those days everyone would see "the sign" - that is to say, everyone would then have ample proof that the resurrection of Christ was no fable cooked up by fanatical disciples but was in fact the Truth, as the words of the Prophet of all prophets came to pass.

So then, it seems that the coming in Matthew 24 (and the other passages we just looked at) seem to have reference not to a "coming back" or a "return" but to a coming into His kingdom and power and dominion as Messiah in fulfillment of the Son of Man prophecy in Daniel.
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Old 07-18-2018, 10:41 PM
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Re: The Son of Man and His Coming in Power

(cont.)

The quick version is this: Jesus ascends to the throne, receives the kingdom. The destruction of Jerusalem completes the process of transferring the kingdom from Judean priesthood to Christ. This signifies the "sign of the Son of Man", meaning that Jesus has been verified as the "son of man" of Daniel 7:13. Afterwards, the elect are gathered from the "four winds of heaven" (meaning from wherever they had been previously scattered). This is accomplished throughout the gospel period (and is on going even now, as people are still being gathered together into the new covenant ekklesia of Jesus).

Paul had to correct some who were teaching that the day of Christ was the same as the coming of the Lord before the ancient of Days. We know this because the error was they were saying the "day of Christ is at hand", yet Paul said it was not, and yet again Jesus taught His coming in the clouds/coming in His kingdom would begin during His trial (thus THAT "coming" most certainly was "at hand"). This shows there is a difference between Christ coming in the clouds of heaven to receive His kingdom, and Christ "returning" to destroy the man of sin. As previously noted, the term "coming of the Lord" and similar terms are used in the OT to refer to VARIOUS types of events, not just one singular happening. Therefore the term "coming of the Lord" is a reference to a TYPE of event and NOT to a specific occurrence of an event.

Please re-read that last sentence again, it is key to understanding what I am saying.

The gathering of the elect from the four corners of heaven has reference to the elect being called to Christ and gathered together into His ekklesia once the Judean remnant had been gathered in (which culminated in the destruction of Jerusalem - the gospel was then "freed" from being simply a sect of Judaism and could now go to all the elect). that gethering continues even today, and will culminate in the resurrection of the dead and transformation of the living saints when Christ RETURNS. That return is certainly "a coming" of the Lord, but as previously noted, "the coming of the Lord" is a term referring to a TYPE of event, not a particular event or occurrence.
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Old 07-18-2018, 10:41 PM
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Re: The Son of Man and His Coming in Power

Therefore the term "coming of the Lord" is a reference to a TYPE of event and NOT to a specific occurrence of an event.


Some Biblical proof of the assertion:
The burden of Babylon, which Isaiah the son of Amoz did see. Lift ye up a banner upon the high mountain, exalt the voice unto them, shake the hand, that they may go into the gates of the nobles. I have commanded my sanctified ones, I have also called my mighty ones for mine anger, even them that rejoice in my highness. The noise of a multitude in the mountains, like as of a great people; a tumultuous noise of the kingdoms of nations gathered together: the LORD of hosts mustereth the host of the battle. They come from a far country, from the end of heaven, even the LORD, and the weapons of his indignation, to destroy the whole land. Howl ye; for the day of the LORD is at hand; it shall come as a destruction from the Almighty. Therefore shall all hands be faint, and every man's heart shall melt: And they shall be afraid: pangs and sorrows shall take hold of them; they shall be in pain as a woman that travaileth: they shall be amazed one at another; their faces shall be as flames. Behold, the day of the LORD cometh, cruel both with wrath and fierce anger, to lay the land desolate: and he shall destroy the sinners thereof out of it. For the stars of heaven and the constellations thereof shall not give their light: the sun shall be darkened in his going forth, and the moon shall not cause her light to shine. And I will punish the world for their evil, and the wicked for their iniquity; and I will cause the arrogancy of the proud to cease, and will lay low the haughtiness of the terrible. I will make a man more precious than fine gold; even a man than the golden wedge of Ophir. Therefore I will shake the heavens, and the earth shall remove out of her place, in the wrath of the LORD of hosts, and in the day of his fierce anger. And it shall be as the chased roe, and as a sheep that no man taketh up: they shall every man turn to his own people, and flee every one into his own land. Every one that is found shall be thrust through; and every one that is joined unto them shall fall by the sword. Their children also shall be dashed to pieces before their eyes; their houses shall be spoiled, and their wives ravished. Behold, I will stir up the Medes against them, which shall not regard silver; and as for gold, they shall not delight in it. Their bows also shall dash the young men to pieces; and they shall have no pity on the fruit of the womb; their eye shall not spare children. And Babylon, the glory of kingdoms, the beauty of the Chaldees' excellency, shall be as when God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah.
(Isaiah 13:1-19)
Here, God pronounces the downfall of Babylon at the hands of the Medes. The event is called "the day of the Lord", filled with His "wrath and indignation". The coming of the Medes with their armies is said to be the coming of the Lord Himself: "They come from a far country, from the end of heaven, even the LORD, and the weapons of his indignation, to destroy the whole land." Cosmic disturbances are spoken of: the sun, moon, and stars being darkened and put out. The heavens would be shaken, the earth moved out of its place (as in a global earthquake).

This is language used in Scripture concerning the destruction of the Babylonian empire at the hand of the Medes, not the "second coming" or the end of the world. Also, it should be noted that this day of the Lord was said to be "at hand". Isaiah gave this prophecy approximately 250 years before Babylon fell to the Medes, yet it was "at hand" when the prophecy was spoken.
The burden of Egypt. Behold, the LORD rideth upon a swift cloud, and shall come into Egypt: and the idols of Egypt shall be moved at his presence, and the heart of Egypt shall melt in the midst of it. And I will set the Egyptians against the Egyptians: and they shall fight every one against his brother, and every one against his neighbour; city against city, and kingdom against kingdom. And the spirit of Egypt shall fail in the midst thereof; and I will destroy the counsel thereof: and they shall seek to the idols, and to the charmers, and to them that have familiar spirits, and to the wizards. And the Egyptians will I give over into the hand of a cruel lord; and a fierce king shall rule over them, saith the Lord, the LORD of hosts.
(Isaiah 19:1-4)
Here is a prophecy against Egypt which was fulfilled when that country was torn apart by civil war, resulting in twelve kingdoms (known historically as the "Dodekarchy"). This took place in 695 BC. The Egyptians rose up against their Ethiopian overlords, overthrew them, and dissolved the kingdom into civil war between 12 smaller kingdoms that arose. Eventually, the war was resolved by the rise to power of Psammeticus in 670 BC, the ruler of Sais (one of the 12 kingdoms), who conquered the rest and forged them back into a single monarchy. His son, Pharoah Necho, soon established himself as the "cruel lord" with his plan to build a canal in the Suez region: "Necho (616-597), the son and successor of Psammetichus, renewed the project of Ramses-Miamun, to construct a Suez canal, and tore away 120,000 of the natives of the land from their homes, sending them to wear out their lives in forced labour of the most wearisome kind. A revolt on the part of the native troops, who had been sent against the rising Cyrene, and driven back into the desert, led to the overthrow of Hophra, the grandson of Necho (570), and put an end to the hateful government of the family of Psammetichus." - Keil and Delitzsch Commentary.

Yet, in this prophecy concerning Egypt which came to pass in the early 7th century BC, it is described as a coming of the Lord upon the clouds.


The word of the LORD that came to Micah the Morasthite in the days of Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah, kings of Judah, which he saw concerning Samaria and Jerusalem. Hear, all ye people; hearken, O earth, and all that therein is: and let the Lord GOD be witness against you, the Lord from his holy temple. For, behold, the LORD cometh forth out of his place, and will come down, and tread upon the high places of the earth. And the mountains shall be molten under him, and the valleys shall be cleft, as wax before the fire, and as the waters that are poured down a steep place. For the transgression of Jacob is all this, and for the sins of the house of Israel. What is the transgression of Jacob? is it not Samaria? and what are the high places of Judah? are they not Jerusalem? Therefore I will make Samaria as an heap of the field, and as plantings of a vineyard: and I will pour down the stones thereof into the valley, and I will discover the foundations thereof.
(Micah 1:1-6)
Here, doom is prophesied against both Samaria and Jerusalem. Samaria was destroyed by Assyria in 722 BC (I believe, I might be off by a year or so), and Jerusalem later in the 600s by Babylon. Yet, the prophesied destruction of the two cities is described as the Lord "coming out of His place... coming down to earth... treading upon the mountains... which will be melted..."

In other words, the concept of the Lord "coming" is clearly used in the Old Testament as a descriptive term for God visiting , usually in judgment against nations and cities. The point being, there is clearly more than one "coming of the Lord".
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Old 07-18-2018, 10:42 PM
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Re: The Son of Man and His Coming in Power

Now for some New Testament examples:
Unto the angel of the church of Ephesus write; These things saith he that holdeth the seven stars in his right hand, who walketh in the midst of the seven golden candlesticks; I know thy works, and thy labour, and thy patience, and how thou canst not bear them which are evil: and thou hast tried them which say they are apostles, and are not, and hast found them liars: And hast borne, and hast patience, and for my name's sake hast laboured, and hast not fainted. Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love. Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy candlestick out of his place, except thou repent.
(Revelation 2:1-5)
Here, a threatened "coming of the Lord" is clearly a reference to a visitation of judgment against a church caught up in errors and backsliding. It is not that the second coming would take place, but that the Lord would "come" and remove the church from it's position as one of His churches. Again, the "coming of the Lord" is a term or concept referencing a visitation in judgment.
And to the angel of the church in Pergamos write; These things saith he which hath the sharp sword with two edges; I know thy works, and where thou dwellest, even where Satan's seat is: and thou holdest fast my name, and hast not denied my faith, even in those days wherein Antipas was my faithful martyr, who was slain among you, where Satan dwelleth. But I have a few things against thee, because thou hast there them that hold the doctrine of Balaam, who taught Balac to cast a stumblingblock before the children of Israel, to eat things sacrificed unto idols, and to commit fornication. So hast thou also them that hold the doctrine of the Nicolaitans, which thing I hate. Repent; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will fight against them with the sword of my mouth.
(Revelation 2:12-16)
Again, we see the same thing: a wayward church that refused to repent would suffer a "coming of the Lord" in judgment. Notice, that in these two New Testament examples, the predicted comings of the Lord are CONDITIONAL. They are conditioned upon the spiritual condition of the respective churches, whether they would repent or not.
And unto the angel of the church in Sardis write; These things saith he that hath the seven Spirits of God, and the seven stars; I know thy works, that thou hast a name that thou livest, and art dead. Be watchful, and strengthen the things which remain, that are ready to die: for I have not found thy works perfect before God. Remember therefore how thou hast received and heard, and hold fast, and repent. If therefore thou shalt not watch, I will come on thee as a thief, and thou shalt not know what hour I will come upon thee.
(Revelation 3:1-3)
Again, a conditional, threatened "coming of the Lord", this time with "thief in the night" language.

So far, we have seen no less than three "comings of the Lord" in the Old Testament, and another three just in the book of Revelation alone. In each of these cases, the coming of the Lord was a prophetic, descriptive term for a visitation of Divine judgment upon nations or churches or the unrepentant ones within certain churches.

But the coming of the Lord is not limited to instances of Divine judgment or punishment, as in this Old Testament prophecy:
Behold, I will send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me: and the Lord, whom ye seek, shall suddenly come to his temple, even the messenger of the covenant, whom ye delight in: behold, he shall come, saith the LORD of hosts. But who may abide the day of his coming? and who shall stand when he appeareth? for he is like a refiner's fire, and like fullers' soap: And he shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver: and he shall purify the sons of Levi, and purge them as gold and silver, that they may offer unto the LORD an offering in righteousness. Then shall the offering of Judah and Jerusalem be pleasant unto the LORD, as in the days of old, and as in former years. And I will come near to you to judgment; and I will be a swift witness against the sorcerers, and against the adulterers, and against false swearers, and against those that oppress the hireling in his wages, the widow, and the fatherless, and that turn aside the stranger from his right, and fear not me, saith the LORD of hosts. For I am the LORD, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed.
(Malachi 3:1-6)
Here, the arrival of Christ is prophesied as a coming of the Lord, indeed as a coming that involved judgment. But not in the execution of punishment! He was to come near in judgment and be a WITNESS against sin and sinners. We know that when Christ came, He came and bore witness of the truth against the ungodliness of the world, yet He did not come to execute vengeance upon them, but to save them from their sins. So here we see a coming of the Lord that, while it includes the idea of judgment, it is focused on MERCY. It is the arrival of the King. Once He arrives, and bears witness against sin, then (having been established as King and "the messenger of the covenant") He is able to execute judgment against His enemies.
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  #8  
Old 07-18-2018, 10:42 PM
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Re: The Son of Man and His Coming in Power

One more New Testament prophecy concerning the coming of the Lord:
Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also. And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know. Thomas saith unto him, Lord, we know not whither thou goest; and how can we know the way? Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also: and from henceforth ye know him, and have seen him. Philip saith unto him, Lord, shew us the Father, and it sufficeth us. Jesus saith unto him, Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, Shew us the Father? Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? the words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: but the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works. Believe me that I am in the Father, and the Father in me: or else believe me for the very works' sake. Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father. And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it. If ye love me, keep my commandments. And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you. I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you. Yet a little while, and the world seeth me no more; but ye see me: because I live, ye shall live also. At that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you. He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him. Judas saith unto him, not Iscariot, Lord, how is it that thou wilt manifest thyself unto us, and not unto the world? Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.
(John 14:1-23)
Make sure you read the whole passage to get the fuller understanding. Jesus is saying He is going away, but will come again. He clarifies this by declaring He would not leave them "comfortless", but would "come" to them. He just got done talking about the Comforter (the Holy Ghost). So then He would "come unto them" via the Holy Ghost. In fact, he declares that those who keep His words will be loved by Him and the Father, and both of them would "come" and dwell with His followers.

Now, this is clearly speaking about the Lord "coming". It is a "coming of the Lord", but not the "second advent". It is also not the "comings" we have seen earlier, either. This coming is not a coming to execute judgment. It is a coming to bring "comfort" and prevent the disciples from being orphans or "fatherless" (the meaning of the term "comfortless" according to the Greek). This obviously was fulfilled on the Day of Pentecost in Acts chapter 2, but it continues to occur whenever a believer loves Jesus and keeps His words, receives the Holy Ghost, and abides in Christ. the Lord is said to "come" to such a one, indeed the Father Himself is said to come to such a one. Meaning of course that such a person receives a "coming of the Lord" that brings the fullness of God Himself into their life, for "he who has the Son has the Father also".

So, the idea of the "coming of the Lord" has several meanings according to the Bible. It can be a temporal judgment executed against a nation or city, it can be a judgment executed against a church or the wayward members of a church, or it can be a visitation in mercy of the Spirit of Christ to those who follow Him and believe in Him. None of these comings of the Lord involve what is commonly known as the "second coming". And none of these comings we have looked at involve the AD 70 destruction of Jerusalem, either!

Was the destruction of Jerusalem in AD 70 a "coming of the Lord"? Sure it was. Will the return of Jesus to resurrect the saints and destroy the man of sin be a "coming of the Lord"? Certainly. But, as we have seen, the term "coming of the Lord" is not a term that always and only refers to one event. Rather, it refers to a type of event. Several types of events, in fact.
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Old 07-18-2018, 10:43 PM
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Re: The Son of Man and His Coming in Power

Just adding some random thoughts here.

The Son of Man prophecy in Daniel is explicitly interpreted by the angel to refer to the eventual succession of God's saints to power, to "possess the kingdom". Yet Jesus clearly appropriated the imagery of that prophecy to Himself and his ministry. This seems to indicate a definite dual fulfillment.

First, it is fulfilled by Christ as the archetypal Israel. He was victorious over the cosmic (secular, "kosmos" or "world") forces of evil, and ascended to power and was given dominion. He received the kingdom.

Second, it is fulfilled by the saints of the Most High (as the angel declared it would be) who receive the victory and the kingdom via their union with Christ.

The prophecy has a definite temporal flow to it - the persecuting beast power is destroyed, and then the son of Man figure receives the kingdom:

Then I would know the truth of the fourth beast, which was diverse from all the others, exceeding dreadful, whose teeth were of iron, and his nails of brass; which devoured, brake in pieces, and stamped the residue with his feet; And of the ten horns that were in his head, and of the other which came up, and before whom three fell; even of that horn that had eyes, and a mouth that spake very great things, whose look was more stout than his fellows. I beheld, and the same horn made war with the saints, and prevailed against them; Until the Ancient of days came, and judgment was given to the saints of the most High; and the time came that the saints possessed the kingdom.
(Daniel 7:19-22)

This clearly places the final victory of the saints AFTER the persecutions of the little horn of the fourth beast. The judgment was given to the saints correlates with the destruction of the beast and the victory of the people of God. since that victory of the people of God correlates with the Son of Man figure approaching the Ancient of Days and receiving the kingdom, then the latter scene of the Son of Man coming to receive the kingdom would be fulfilled upon the destruction of the beast. Or, one may say the two events coincide - the beast is destroyed at least in part by the coming of the Son of Man into the kingdom.

So, there are two layers of fulfillments going on here. Christ first comes into His kingdom after spiritually defeating His enemies, then this spiritual reality unfolds in "reality" when the persecuting power is destroyed and the saints possess the kingdom.

This two-fold aspect appears in many other places as well, and is a common theme in Scripture. For example, Christ destroyed the devil, yet the devil's destruction has not been realised in "real time" yet. It is both now, and not-yet. We have received the kingdom, and are members of that kingdom, yet we still await it's consummation. Again, it is both an "already done yet still to be" event.

Death has been abolished IN CHRIST, and because we are in Christ death shall be abolished in us as well, at the resurrection. Again, it is both a done deal, and a yet-to-be-accomplished reality.

So, Christ's coming in the clouds of heaven has to do with His coming into the kingdom, His accession to power and dominion, which began with the cross and continued through the ascension. It was evidenced or witnessed by the outpouring of the Spirit on Pentecost, the spread of the gospel to both Judean and Greek, and the overthrow of Jerusalem and the destruction of the temple (these constitute the "sign of the Son of Man in Heaven", as the evidences of the resurrection of Jesus proving He is indeed the Son of God with power).

Having acceded to power and dominion, this spiritual reality begins to work itself out in history as the historical fulfillment of Daniel 7 takes place. The beast was already defeated at Calvary, but that defeat was not worked out, as it were, in the "down here and now on the earth", at that immediate time. So, we look forward to the time that the beast/little horn is slain and defeated, and the whole dominion is given to the saints of the Most High - Christ having already accomplished this victory for us in the heavens.
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Old 07-18-2018, 10:43 PM
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Re: The Son of Man and His Coming in Power

And this of course raises the question "WHAT dominion, and kingdom?" Daniel 7:27 seems to imply the kingdom is at least in part concerned with and coextensive with the dominion of the fourth beast/little horn.

Verse 18 in the interpretation indicates the kingdom is "taken" by the saints, which implies it was previously held by or controlled by something or someone else (the four beasts?).

Verse 14 indicates the kingdom is universal in scope, and is given by God/comes from God. The wording of the verse by itself might suggest this marks the beginning of the kingdom. But the following verses, which interpret the vision, seem to suggest that what is being described is the dominion or kingdom of the four beasts, culminating in the fourth beast and little horn, being transferred to the saints by divine decree.

The Gospel statements about the kingdom being taken by force, of people pressing in, of the kingdom being taken from the Jews and given to others, etc, all seem to be developments of this same theme in Daniel, and provide additional data.
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