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Second Coming

Second Coming

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In Christian
Christianity
Christianity is a monotheistic religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus as presented in canonical gospels and other New Testament writings...

 doctrine, the Second Coming of Christ, the Second Advent, or the Parousia
Parousia
Parousia is an ancient Greek word meaning presence, arrival, or official visit.-Classical usage:# Physical presence, arrival – The main use is the physical presence of a person, which where that person is not already present refers to the prospect of the physical arrival of that person, especially...

, is the anticipated return of Jesus Christ
Jesus
Jesus of Nazareth , commonly referred to as Jesus Christ or simply as Jesus or Christ, is the central figure of Christianity...

 from Heaven
Heaven (Christianity)
Traditionally, Christianity has taught Heaven as a place of eternal life and the dwelling place of Angels and the Throne of God, and a kingdom to which all the elect will be admitted...

, where he sits
Session of Christ
The Christian doctrine of the Session of Christ or heavenly session says that Jesus Christ is seated at the right hand of God the Father in Heaven—the word "session" is an archaic noun meaning "sitting." Although the word formerly meant "the act of sitting down," it no longer has that meaning in...

 at the Right Hand of God
Right Hand of God
The Right Hand of God or God's Right Hand may refer to the Hand of God often referred to in the Bible and common speech as a metaphor for the omnipotence of God and as a motif in art...

, to Earth
World (theology)
-Christian views on the World:In Christianity, the concept connotes the fallen and corrupt world order of human society. The world is frequently cited alongside the flesh and the Devil as a source of temptation that Christians should flee...

. This prophecy is found in the canonical gospels and in most Christian
Christian eschatology
Christian eschatology is a major branch of study within Christian theology. Eschatology, from two Greek words meaning last and study , is the study of the end of things, whether the end of an individual life, the end of the age, or the end of the world...

 and Islamic eschatologies
Islamic eschatology
Islamic eschatology is concerned with the al-Qiyāmah . Like the other Abrahamic religions, Islam teaches the bodily resurrection of the dead, the fulfillment of a divine plan for creation, and the judgement of the soul; the righteous are rewarded with the pleasures of Jannah while the unrighteous...

. Christians generally believe the anticipated event is predicted in Biblical Messianic prophecy. Views about the nature of Jesus' Second Coming vary among Christian denominations and sometimes among individual Christians within these denominations.

For example, in most English versions of the Nicene Creed in current use
English versions of the Nicene Creed in current use
The Nicene Creed, composed in part and adopted at the First Council of Nicaea and revised with additions by the First Council of Constantinople , is a creed that summarises the orthodox faith of the Christian Church and is used in the liturgy of most Christian Churches...

 is the phrase: "He [Jesus] will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead
Last Judgment
The Last Judgment, Final Judgment, Day of Judgment, Judgment Day, or The Day of the Lord in Christian theology, is the final and eternal judgment by God of every nation. The concept is found in all the Canonical gospels, particularly the Gospel of Matthew. It will purportedly take place after the...

, and his kingdom
Kingdom of God
The Kingdom of God or Kingdom of Heaven is a foundational concept in the Abrahamic religions: Judaism, Christianity and Islam.The term "Kingdom of God" is found in all four canonical gospels and in the Pauline epistles...

 will have no end. ... We look for the resurrection of the dead
Resurrection of the dead
Resurrection of the Dead is a belief found in a number of eschatologies, most commonly in Christian, Islamic, Jewish and Zoroastrian. In general, the phrase refers to a specific event in the future; multiple prophesies in the histories of these religions assert that the dead will be brought back to...

, and the life of the world to come
World to Come
The World to Come is an eschatological phrase reflecting the belief that the "current world" is flawed or cursed and will be replaced in the future by a better world or a paradise. The concept is similar to the concepts of Heaven and the afterlife, but Heaven is another place generally seen as...

. Amen
Amen
The word amen is a declaration of affirmation found in the Hebrew Bible and New Testament. Its use in Judaism dates back to its earliest texts. It has been generally adopted in Christian worship as a concluding word for prayers and hymns. In Islam, it is the standard ending to Dua and the...

."

Terminology




Several different terms are used to refer to the second coming of Christ.

Epiphany



In the New Testament the Greek word ἐπιφάνεια (epiphaneia, appearing) is used five times to refer to the return of Christ.

Parousia



The Greek New Testament uses the Greek term parousia (παρουσία, meaning "arrival", "coming", or "presence") twenty-four times, seventeen of them concerning Christ. The word is also used six times referring to individuals: Stephanas, Fortunatus and Achaicus , Titus
Titus
Titus , was Roman Emperor from 79 to 81. A member of the Flavian dynasty, Titus succeeded his father Vespasian upon his death, thus becoming the first Roman Emperor to come to the throne after his own father....

and of Paul himself and one time referring to the "coming of the lawless one".

The etymology
Etymology
Etymology is the study of the history of words, their origins, and how their form and meaning have changed over time.For languages with a long written history, etymologists make use of texts in these languages and texts about the languages to gather knowledge about how words were used during...

 of Greek word parousia is related to para "beside" ousia
Ousia
Ousia is the Ancient Greek noun formed on the feminine present participle of ; it is analogous to the English participle being, and the modern philosophy adjectival ontic...

"presence". In English "parousia" always has a special, Christian, meaning.

Definitions



In Thayer's
Joseph Henry Thayer
Joseph Henry Thayer , US biblical scholar, was born in Boston, Massachusetts.He studied at the Boston Latin School, and graduated from Harvard in 1850...

 Lexicon, the Greek word parousia is defined as Strong's
Strong's Concordance
Strong's Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible, generally known as Strong's Concordance, is a concordance of the King James Bible that was constructed under the direction of Dr. James Strong and first published in 1890. Dr. Strong was Professor of exegetical theology at Drew Theological Seminary at...

 G3952:
And in the Bauer-Danker Lexicon
Bauer lexicon
The Bauer-Danker Lexicon is among the most highly respected dictionaries of Biblical Greek. The author of the German original is Walter Bauer...

:
And in the Catholic Encyclopedia
Catholic Encyclopedia
The Catholic Encyclopedia, also referred to as the Old Catholic Encyclopedia and the Original Catholic Encyclopedia, is an English-language encyclopedia published in the United States. The first volume appeared in March 1907 and the last three volumes appeared in 1912, followed by a master index...

 article on General Judgment
General judgment
General judgment is the Christian theological concept of a judgment of the dead by nation and as a whole. It is related closely to Judgment day and often is just another phrase for the Last judgment, but is not necessarily part of any eschatology...

:
Adolf Deissmann (1908) showed that the Greek word "parousia" was used as early as the 3rd century BC to describe the visit of a king or dignitary to a city arranged in order the show his magnificence to the people. The Roman Advent Coins struck by the cities of Corinth and Patras for Nero's visit reveals the correspondence between the Greek "parousia" and the Latin "Adventus" and their relationship to the Greek word "epiphany" that means "appearing".

Signs of Christ's return



The Book of Acts states:
Other signs:
  1. The coming of Christ will be instantaneous and worldwide. "For as the lightning comes from the east and flashes to the west, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be." —Matthew 24:27
  2. The coming of Christ will be visible to all. "Then the sign of the Son of Man 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 24:30
  3. The coming of Christ will be audible. "And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other." —Matthew 24:31
  4. The resurrection of the righteous will occur. "For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first." —1 Thessalonians 4:16
  5. In one single event, the saved who are alive at Christ's coming will be caught up together with the resurrected to meet the Lord in the air. "Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord." —1 Thessalonians 4:17

Christian views


1st century


According to historian Charles Freeman
Charles Freeman (historian)
Charles Freeman is a scholar and freelance historian specializing in the history of ancient Greece and Rome. He is the author of numerous books on the ancient world including The Closing of the Western Mind: The Rise of Faith and the Fall of Reason. He has taught courses on ancient history in...

, early Christians expected Jesus to return within a generation of his death. When the second coming did not occur, the early Christian communities were thrown into turmoil.

Catholic and Orthodox



It is the traditional view of Catholics and Orthodox Christians that the second coming will be a sudden and unmistakable incident, like "a flash of lightning". They hold the general view that Jesus will not spend any time on the earth in ministry or preaching. They also agree that the ministry of the antichrist
Antichrist
The term or title antichrist, in Christian theology, refers to a leader who fulfills Biblical prophecies concerning an adversary of Christ, while resembling him in a deceptive manner...

 will take place right before the second coming.

Preterism



The position associating the Second Coming with 1st century events
Christianity in the 1st century
The earliest followers of Jesus composed an apocalyptic, Jewish sect, which historians refer to as Jewish Christianity. The Apostles and others following the Great Commission's decree to spread the teachings of Jesus to "all nations," had great success spreading the religion to gentiles. Peter,...

 such as the destruction of Jerusalem and of the Jewish Temple in AD 70
Siege of Jerusalem (70)
The Siege of Jerusalem in the year 70 AD was the decisive event of the First Jewish-Roman War. The Roman army, led by the future Emperor Titus, with Tiberius Julius Alexander as his second-in-command, besieged and conquered the city of Jerusalem, which had been occupied by its Jewish defenders in...

 is known as Preterism
Preterism
Preterism is a Christian eschatological view that interprets prophecies of the Bible, especially Daniel and Revelation, as events which have already happened in the first century A.D. Preterism holds that Ancient Israel finds its continuation or fulfillment in the Christian church at the...

.

Some preterists see this "coming of the Son of Man in glory" primarily fulfilled in Jesus' death on the cross. They believe the apocalyptic signs are already fulfilled including "the sun will be dark
Crucifixion eclipse
According to the Christian synoptic gospels, on the day Jesus Christ was crucified, darkness covered the land for hours, an event which later came to be referred to as the "crucifixion eclipse". Although medieval writers treated the darkness as a miracle, various Christian historians have...

", the "powers ... will be shaken," and "then they will see". Yet some critics note many are missing such as "But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat; both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up." (2 Peter 3:10) And "Then the sign of the Son of Man 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 24:30)

Some, such as Jerome
Jerome
Saint Jerome was a Roman Christian priest, confessor, theologian and historian, and who became a Doctor of the Church. He was the son of Eusebius, of the city of Stridon, which was on the border of Dalmatia and Pannonia...

, interpret the phrase "this generation" to mean lifetime of the Jewish race; however, if Jesus meant "race" he would have used genos (race) not genea (generation). However, most scholars don't think Jesus spoke Greek, but instead that he spoke Aramaic
Aramaic of Jesus
It is generally agreed that the historical Jesus primarily spoke Aramaic, perhaps along with some Hebrew and Greek . The towns of Nazareth and Capernaum, where Jesus lived, were primarily Aramaic-speaking communities, although Greek was widely spoken in the major cities of the Eastern Mediterranean...

.

Mainline Protestant



The many denominations of Protestantism have differing views on the exact details of Christ's second coming. Only a handful of Christian organizations claim complete and authoritative interpretation of the typically symbolic and prophetic biblical sources. A common thread is the belief that Jesus will return to judge the world and to establish the kingdom of God (fulfilling the rest of Messianic prophecy).

A short reference to the second coming is contained in the Nicene Creed
Nicene Creed
The Nicene Creed is the creed or profession of faith that is most widely used in Christian liturgy. It is called Nicene because, in its original form, it was adopted in the city of Nicaea by the first ecumenical council, which met there in the year 325.The Nicene Creed has been normative to the...

, a prominent Christian statement of faith: "He [Jesus] shall come again in glory to judge the living and the dead; and His kingdom shall have no end." An analogous statement is also in the biblical Pauline Creed, in .

Some Lutheran, Anglican
Anglican Communion
The Anglican Communion is an international association of national and regional Anglican churches in full communion with the Church of England and specifically with its principal primate, the Archbishop of Canterbury...

 and United Methodist liturgies
Liturgy
Liturgy is either the customary public worship done by a specific religious group, according to its particular traditions or a more precise term that distinguishes between those religious groups who believe their ritual requires the "people" to do the "work" of responding to the priest, and those...

 proclaim the Mystery of Faith to be: "Christ has died, Christ is risen, Christ will come again."

Generally, mainline Protestant Christianity does not offer predictions on the date of the second coming, though some may form their own ideas of how and where it will happen.

Seventh Day Adventists



Fundamental Belief # 25 of the Seventh Day Adventist Church states

Jehovah's Witnesses


Jehovah's Witnesses rarely use the term "second coming", preferring the term "presence" as a translation of parousia. They believe that Jesus' comparison of "the presence of the Son of man" with "the days of Noah" at Matthew 24:37-39 and Luke 17:26-30 suggests a duration rather than a moment of arrival.

Jehovah's Witnesses believe that biblical chronology points to 1914 as the start of Christ's "presence", which continues until Armageddon. Other biblical expressions they correlate with this period include "the time of the end" (Dan 12:4), "the conclusion of the system of things" (Matt 13:40,49; 24:3) and "the last days" (2 Tim 3:1; 2 Peter 3:3). Witnesses believe Christ's millennial reign
Millennialism
Millennialism , or chiliasm in Greek, is a belief held by some Christian denominations that there will be a Golden Age or Paradise on Earth in which "Christ will reign" for 1000 years prior to the final judgment and future eternal state...

 begins after Armageddon.

Latter Day Saints



Notably those of the Latter Day Saint movement
Latter Day Saint movement
The Latter Day Saint movement is a group of independent churches tracing their origin to a Christian primitivist movement founded by Joseph Smith, Jr. in the late 1820s. Collectively, these churches have over 14 million members...

 have particularly distinct and specific interpretations as to various signs presented in the Book of Revelation
Book of Revelation
The Book of Revelation is the final book of the New Testament. The title came into usage from the first word of the book in Koine Greek: apokalupsis, meaning "unveiling" or "revelation"...

.

Esoteric Christian teachings



In Rosicrucian
Rosicrucian
Rosicrucianism is a philosophical secret society, said to have been founded in late medieval Germany by Christian Rosenkreuz. It holds a doctrine or theology "built on esoteric truths of the ancient past", which, "concealed from the average man, provide insight into nature, the physical universe...

 esoteric Christian teaching, authors such as Max Heindel
Max Heindel
Max Heindel - born Carl Louis von Grasshoff in Aarhus, Denmark on July 23, 1865 - was a Christian occultist, astrologer, and mystic. He died on January 6, 1919 at Oceanside, California, United States.- Early infancy :...

 draw a distinction between Jesus
Jesus
Jesus of Nazareth , commonly referred to as Jesus Christ or simply as Jesus or Christ, is the central figure of Christianity...

 the man, and the Christ, the true or divine nature. He considers Jesus to be a high initiate of the human life wave (which evolves under the cycle of rebirth
Reincarnation
Reincarnation best describes the concept where the soul or spirit, after the death of the body, is believed to return to live in a new human body, or, in some traditions, either as a human being, animal or plant...

), a singularly pure type of mind, vastly superior to the great majority of the present humanity. He was educated during his youth among the Essenes and thus prepared himself for the greatest honor ever bestowed upon a human being: to deliver his pure, passionless, highly evolved physical body and vital body
Etheric body
The etheric body, ether-body, æther body, a name given by neo-Theosophy to a supposed vital body or subtle body propounded in esoteric philosophies as the first or lowest layer in the "human energy field" or aura...

 (already attuned to the high vibrations of the 'life spirit'), in the moment of the baptism
Baptism of Jesus
The baptism of Jesus marks the beginning of Jesus Christ's public ministry. This event is recorded in the Canonical Gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke. In John 1:29-33 rather than a direct narrative, the Baptist bears witness to the episode...

, to the Christ being for His ministry in the physical world. Christ is described as the highest spiritual being of the life wave called archangels, and has completed His union with the second aspect of God (Christ the Son
God the Son
God the Son is the second person of the Trinity in Christian theology. The doctrine of the Trinity identifies Jesus of Nazareth as God the Son, united in essence but distinct in person with regard to God the Father and God the Holy Spirit...

): Wisdom (Christ the [solar] Logos; distinct from "the Word", Logos
Logos
' is an important term in philosophy, psychology, rhetoric and religion. Originally a word meaning "a ground", "a plea", "an opinion", "an expectation", "word," "speech," "account," "reason," it became a technical term in philosophy, beginning with Heraclitus ' is an important term in...

, of Whom John speaks, "The Only Begotten").

In these esoteric Christian teachings, there is a clear distinction between the cosmic Christ, or Christ without, and the Christ within: the cosmic Christ, the 'Regent of the Earth', aids each individual in the formation of the Christ within, the golden wedding garment. also called "Soul body", the correct translation of Paul of Tarsus
Paul of Tarsus
Paul the Apostle , also known as Saul of Tarsus, is described in the Christian New Testament as one of the most influential early Christian missionaries, with the writings ascribed to him by the church forming a considerable portion of the New Testament...

 "soma psuchicon" (Greek "soma" [body] and "psuchicon" [psu(y)che—soul]), "It is sown a soul body; it is raised a spiritual body…," distinction of "spirit and soul and body".

According to this tradition, the Christ within is regarded as the true Saviour who needs to be born within each individual in order to evolve toward the future Sixth Epoch
Root race
Root Races are stages in human evolution in the esoteric cosmology of theosophist Helena Petrovna Blavatsky, as described in her book The Secret Doctrine . These races were said to have existed on now-lost continents. Blavatsky's model was developed by later theosophists, most notably William...

 in the Earth's etheric plane
Etheric plane
The etheric plane is a term introduced into Theosophy by Charles Webster Leadbeater and Annie Besant to represent one of the planes of existence in neo-Theosophical and Rosicrucian cosmology. It represents the fourth[higher] subplane of the physical plane , the lower three being the states of...

, that is, toward the "new heavens and a new earth": the New Galilee
New Galilee (Sixth Epoch)
The New Galilee is the name given in the Western Wisdom Teachings to the New Jerusalem mentioned in the Bible. According to these Christian esoteric teachings, the New Galilee represents the future Sixth Epoch in mankind's evolutionary path and will see the transition of humanity to the etheric...

.
The Second Coming or Advent of the Christ is not in a physical body, but in the new soul body of each individual in the etheric region
Etheric plane
The etheric plane is a term introduced into Theosophy by Charles Webster Leadbeater and Annie Besant to represent one of the planes of existence in neo-Theosophical and Rosicrucian cosmology. It represents the fourth[higher] subplane of the physical plane , the lower three being the states of...

 of the planet where man "shall be caught up IN THE CLOUDS to meet the Lord IN THE AIR." The "day and hour" when this event shall be, as described in the Bible, is not in the human knowledge domain. The esoteric Christian tradition teaches that first there will be a preparatory period as the Sun
Sun
The Sun is the star at the center of the Solar System. It is almost perfectly spherical and consists of hot plasma interwoven with magnetic fields...

 enters Aquarius by precession: the coming age of Aquarius
Age of Aquarius
The Age of Aquarius is either the current or new age in the cycle of astrological ages. Each astrological age is approximately 2,150 years long, on average, but there are various methods of calculating this length that may yield longer or shorter time spans depending upon the technique used...

.

Dispensationalists



Dispensationalists believe:
  1. The coming of Christ will be instantaneous and worldwide. "For as the lightning comes from the east and flashes to the west, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be." ~ Gospel of Matthew
    Gospel of Matthew
    The Gospel According to Matthew is one of the four canonical gospels, one of the three synoptic gospels, and the first book of the New Testament. It tells of the life, ministry, death, and resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth...

     24:27
  2. The coming of Christ will be visible to all. "Then the sign of the Son of Man 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 24:30
  3. The coming of Christ will be audible. "And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other." Matthew 24:31

Baha'i Faith


Bahá'u'lláh
Bahá'u'lláh
Bahá'u'lláh , born ' , was the founder of the Bahá'í Faith. He claimed to be the prophetic fulfilment of Bábism, a 19th-century outgrowth of Shí‘ism, but in a broader sense claimed to be a messenger from God referring to the fulfilment of the eschatological expectations of Islam, Christianity, and...

 claimed to be the Return of Christ. Followers of the Bahá'í Faith
Bahá'í Faith
The Bahá'í Faith is a monotheistic religion founded by Bahá'u'lláh in 19th-century Persia, emphasizing the spiritual unity of all humankind. There are an estimated five to six million Bahá'ís around the world in more than 200 countries and territories....

 believe that the fulfillment of the prophecies of the second coming of Jesus, as well as the prophecies of the Maitreya
Maitreya
Maitreya , Metteyya , or Jampa , is foretold as a future Buddha of this world in Buddhist eschatology. In some Buddhist literature, such as the Amitabha Sutra and the Lotus Sutra, he or she is referred to as Ajita Bodhisattva.Maitreya is a bodhisattva who in the Buddhist tradition is to appear on...

 and many other religious prophecies, were begun by the Báb
Báb
Siyyid `Alí Muḥammad Shírází was the founder of Bábism, and one of three central figures of the Bahá'í Faith. He was a merchant from Shíráz, Persia, who at the age of twenty-four claimed to be the promised Qá'im . After his declaration he took the title of Báb meaning "Gate"...

 in 1844 and then by Bahá'u'lláh
Bahá'u'lláh
Bahá'u'lláh , born ' , was the founder of the Bahá'í Faith. He claimed to be the prophetic fulfilment of Bábism, a 19th-century outgrowth of Shí‘ism, but in a broader sense claimed to be a messenger from God referring to the fulfilment of the eschatological expectations of Islam, Christianity, and...

. They commonly compare the fulfillment of Christian prophecies to Jesus' fulfillment of Jewish prophecies, where in both cases people were expecting the literal fulfillment of apocalyptic statements.

Hinduism


In modern times some traditional Indian religious leaders have since moved to embrace Jesus as an Avatar
Avatar
In Hinduism, an avatar is a deliberate descent of a deity to earth, or a descent of the Supreme Being and is mostly translated into English as "incarnation," but more accurately as "appearance" or "manifestation"....

, or incarnation, of God. In light of this, the Indian guru Paramahansa Yogananda, author of Autobiography of a Yogi
Autobiography of a Yogi
In 1946, Paramahansa Yogananda , published his life story, Autobiography of a Yogi, which introduced many westerners to meditation and yoga...

, scribed an extensive commentary on the Gospels published in the two-volume set The Second Coming of Christ: The Resurrection of the Christ Within You. In the tradition of the Gnostic Gospels
Gnostic Gospels
The Gnostic Gospels are a collection of about fifty-two texts supposedly based upon the ancient wisdom teachings of several prophets and spiritual leaders including Jesus, written from the 2nd to the 4th century AD. These gospels are not part of the standard Biblical canon of any major Christian...

, the book offers a mystical interpretation of the Second Coming in which it is understood to be an inner experience, something that takes place within the individual heart.

Stating that "Paramahansa Yogananda was sent to the West by Jesus Christ himself" with the said intent to "restore the original Christian teachings among his followers", in Revelations of Christ Swami Kriyananda
Swami Kriyananda
Swami Kriyananda , born J. Donald Walters , is a direct disciple of the yogi Paramhansa Yogananda and founder of Ananda, a worldwide movement of spiritual intentional communities based on Yogananda's World Brotherhood Colonies ideal...

, Yogananda's disciple and Ex-minister of the Self-Realization Fellowship
Self-Realization Fellowship
Self-Realization Fellowship / Yogoda Satsanga Society of India is a worldwide spiritual organization founded by Paramahansa Yogananda in 1920 and based in Mount Washington in Los Angeles, California....

, provides a distilled commentary on the life and teachings of Christ, all of which is meant to serve as an anticipatory primer to Yogananda's more philosophically nuanced treatment in The Second Coming of Christ. Turning directly to The Bible, Kriyananda argues for a more scripturally mature Christianity in which The Second Coming is treated not in terms of a profane materialism - one which favors a literal, physical and subsequently anti-spiritual resurrection - but rather unfolds in accordance with the more spiritual aspirations of The Book of Luke; for "Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you." (Luke 17:21)

Thus Hinduism's consideration of itself as an Eastern extension of the Christian Gospel, however, is neither unique to Yogananda or his disciple, Swami Kriyananda. Similarly, Srila Prabhupada, author Bhagavad Gita As It Is
Bhagavad Gita As It Is
Bhagavad-Gītā As It Is is a translation and commentary of the Bhagavad Gita by A.C.Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, founder-acharya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness...

 and founder of the Hare Krishna Movement, has propounded the same pluralistic, nonsecular view: that "'Christ' is another way of saying Krsta and Krsta is another way of pronouncing Krishna
Krishna
Krishna is a central figure of Hinduism and is traditionally attributed the authorship of the Bhagavad Gita. He is the supreme Being and considered in some monotheistic traditions as an Avatar of Vishnu...

, the name of God." Stating that "A son may call his father 'Father', but the father also has a specific name. Similarly, God is the general name of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, whose specific name is Krishna", "Therefore", he writes, "whether you call God 'Christ', 'Krsta', or 'Krishna', ultimately you are addressing the same Supreme Personality of Godhead. "

Islam



Muslims believe that Isa (Jesus) will return at a time close to the end of the world. The Qur'anic verse they allude to as an indicator to Isa' future return is as follows:
According to Islamic tradition, Isa' descent will be in the midst of wars fought by the Mahdi
Mahdi
In Islamic eschatology, the Mahdi is the prophesied redeemer of Islam who will stay on Earth for seven, nine or nineteen years- before the Day of Judgment and, alongside Jesus, will rid the world of wrongdoing, injustice and tyranny.In Shia Islam, the belief in the Mahdi is a "central religious...

(lit. "the rightly guided one"), known in Islamic eschatology
Islamic eschatology
Islamic eschatology is concerned with the al-Qiyāmah . Like the other Abrahamic religions, Islam teaches the bodily resurrection of the dead, the fulfillment of a divine plan for creation, and the judgement of the soul; the righteous are rewarded with the pleasures of Jannah while the unrighteous...

 as the redeemer of Islam, against the al-Masīh ad-Dajjāl
Dajjal
al-Masih ad-Dajjal , is an evil figure in Islamic eschatology. He is to appear pretending to be Masih at a time in the future, before Yawm al-Qiyamah , directly comparable to the figures of the Antichrist and Armilus in Christian and Jewish eschatology, respectively.-Name: is a common Arabic word ...

("false messiah") and his followers. Isa will descend at the point of a white arcade, east of Damascus
Damascus
Damascus , commonly known in Syria as Al Sham , and as the City of Jasmine , is the capital and the second largest city of Syria after Aleppo, both are part of the country's 14 governorates. In addition to being one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world, Damascus is a major...

, dressed in yellow robes—his head anointed. He will then join the Mahdi in his war against the Dajjal. Isa, considered in Islam as a Muslim (one who submits to God) and one of God's messengers, will abide by the Islamic teachings. Eventually, Isa will slay the Dajjal, and then everyone from the People of the Book
People of the Book
People of the Book is a term used to designate non-Muslim adherents to faiths which have a revealed scripture called, in Arabic, Al-Kitab . The three types of adherents to faiths that the Qur'an mentions as people of the book are the Jews, Sabians and Christians.In Islam, the Muslim scripture, the...

 (ahl al-kitāb, referring to Jews and Christians) will believe in him. Thus, there will be one community, that of Islam.

: Narrated Abu Hurairah
Abu Hurairah
Abu Hurairah , was a companion of the Islamic prophet Muhammad and the narrator of Hadith most quoted in the isnad by Sunnis.-Early life:...

:
After the death of the Mahdi, Isa will assume leadership. This is a time associated in Islamic narrative with universal peace and justice. Islamic texts also allude to the appearance of Ya'juj and Ma'juj (known also as Gog and Magog), ancient tribes which will disperse and cause disturbance on earth. God, in response to Isa' prayers, will kill them by sending a type of worm in the napes of their necks. Isa' rule is said to be around forty years, after which he will die. Muslims will then perform the Salat al-Janazah (funeral prayer) for him and bury him in the city of Medina
Medina
Medina , or ; also transliterated as Madinah, or madinat al-nabi "the city of the prophet") is a city in the Hejaz region of western Saudi Arabia, and serves as the capital of the Al Madinah Province. It is the second holiest city in Islam, and the burial place of the Islamic Prophet Muhammad, and...

 in a grave left vacant beside Muhammad
Muhammad
Muhammad |ligature]] at U+FDF4 ;Arabic pronunciation varies regionally; the first vowel ranges from ~~; the second and the last vowel: ~~~. There are dialects which have no stress. In Egypt, it is pronounced not in religious contexts...

.

Ahmadiyya



The Ahmadis believe that the promised Mahdi and Messiah (being one and the same person) has already arrived in the person of Mirza Ghulam Ahmad
Mirza Ghulam Ahmad
Mīrzā Ghulām Aḥmad was a religious figure from India and the founder of the Ahmadiyya Community. He claimed to be the Mujaddid of the 14th Islamic century, the promised Messiah , and the Mahdi awaited by the Muslims in the end days...

 (1835–1908).

The hadith
Hadith
The term Hadīth is used to denote a saying or an act or tacit approval or criticism ascribed either validly or invalidly to the Islamic prophet Muhammad....

(sayings of the Islamic Prophet Muhammad
Muhammad
Muhammad |ligature]] at U+FDF4 ;Arabic pronunciation varies regionally; the first vowel ranges from ~~; the second and the last vowel: ~~~. There are dialects which have no stress. In Egypt, it is pronounced not in religious contexts...

) and the Bible
Bible
The Bible refers to any one of the collections of the primary religious texts of Judaism and Christianity. There is no common version of the Bible, as the individual books , their contents and their order vary among denominations...

 indicated that Isa would return during the latter days. Islamic tradition commonly depicts that Isa, upon his second coming, would be an Ummati (Muslim) and a follower of Muhammad and that he would revive the truth of Islam rather than fostering a new religion.

The Ahmadiyya movement interpret the Second Coming of Isa prophesied as being that of a person "similar to Isa" (mathīl-i ʿIsā) and not his physical return, in the same way as John the Baptist
John the Baptist
John the Baptist was an itinerant preacher and a major religious figure mentioned in the Canonical gospels. He is described in the Gospel of Luke as a relative of Jesus, who led a movement of baptism at the Jordan River...

 resembled the character of the Biblical prophet Elijah in Christianity. Ahmadis believe that Ghulam Ahmad demonstrated that the prophecy in Muslim and Christian religious texts were traditionally misunderstood to suggest that Jesus of Nazareth himself would return, and hold that Jesus had survived the crucifixion and had died a natural death. Ahmadi's consider the founder of the movement
Mirza Ghulam Ahmad
Mīrzā Ghulām Aḥmad was a religious figure from India and the founder of the Ahmadiyya Community. He claimed to be the Mujaddid of the 14th Islamic century, the promised Messiah , and the Mahdi awaited by the Muslims in the end days...

, in both his character and teachings to be representative of Jesus, and subsequently he attained the same spiritual rank of Prophethood as Jesus. Thus, Ahmadis believe this prediction was fulfilled and continued by his movement.

Judaism


Rabbinic Judaism
Rabbinic Judaism
Rabbinic Judaism or Rabbinism has been the mainstream form of Judaism since the 6th century CE, after the codification of the Talmud...

 believes that Jesus failed to fulfill any Messianic prophecies and is thus one of the false Jewish Messiah claimants
Jewish Messiah claimants
The Messiah in Judaism has a number of interpretations, including any king chosen by God; a holy king who will lead Israel; and someone who will usher in an idyllic age of peace and justice...

. They often claim that, among other things, Jesus' death and failure to redeem the world after his first coming are proof that he could not be the Messiah. Rabbi David Wolpe
David Wolpe
David J. Wolpe is an author, public speaker and rabbi of Sinai Temple . Named the "#1 Pulpit Rabbi in America" by Newsweek magazine , he is considered a leader of the Conservative Jewish movement. Wolpe was named one of The Forward's Forward 50, and one of the hundred most influential people in...

 believes that the Second Coming was "grown out of genuine disappointment" and invented by Christians to theologically compensate for Jesus' death.

Theosophy


In January 1946, Theosophist
Theosophy
Theosophy, in its modern presentation, is a spiritual philosophy developed since the late 19th century. Its major themes were originally described mainly by Helena Blavatsky , co-founder of the Theosophical Society...

 Alice A. Bailey prophesied that Christ (who is regarded by Theosophists as being identical with the being known by Theosophists as the Maitreya
Maitreya (Theosophy)
Maitreya or Lord Maitreya is described in Theosophical literature of the late 19th-century and subsequent periods as an advanced spiritual entity and high-ranking member of a hidden Spiritual Hierarchy, the so-called Masters of the Ancient Wisdom...

) would return "sometime after AD 2025".

Last Day counterfeits



Many Christians believe there will be a great deception before the coming of Christ. In Matthew 24 Jesus
Jesus
Jesus of Nazareth , commonly referred to as Jesus Christ or simply as Jesus or Christ, is the central figure of Christianity...

 states
These false Christs will perform great signs and are no ordinary people "For they are spirits of demons, performing signs, which go out to the kings of the earth and of the whole world, to gather them to the battle of that great day of God Almighty." (Revelation 16:14) Satan's angels will also appear as godly clergymen, and Satan will appear as an angel of light. "For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into apostles of Christ. And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also transform themselves into ministers of righteousness, whose end will be according to their works." (2 Corinthians 11:13-15)

Specific date predictions and claims


A number of specific dates have been suggested for the Second Coming of Christ. Some of these predictions have passed many decades ago and some are decades away.

A number of people have also claimed to have fulfilled the Second Coming of Christ.

See also

  • Christian eschatology
    Christian eschatology
    Christian eschatology is a major branch of study within Christian theology. Eschatology, from two Greek words meaning last and study , is the study of the end of things, whether the end of an individual life, the end of the age, or the end of the world...

  • List of people who have claimed to be Jesus
  • Realized eschatology
    Realized eschatology
    Realized eschatology is a Christian eschatological theory popularized by C. H. Dodd that holds that the eschatological passages in the New Testament do not refer to the future, but instead refer to the ministry of Jesus and his lasting legacy...

  • Summary of Christian eschatological differences
  • "The Second Coming"
    The Second Coming (poem)
    "The Second Coming" is a poem composed by Irish poet William Butler Yeats in 1919 and first printed in The Dial and afterwards included in his 1921 collection of verses titled Michael Robartes and the Dancer. The poem uses Christian imagery regarding the Apocalypse and second coming as allegory to...

    , a poem by William Butler Yeats
    William Butler Yeats
    William Butler Yeats was an Irish poet and playwright, and one of the foremost figures of 20th century literature. A pillar of both the Irish and British literary establishments, in his later years he served as an Irish Senator for two terms...