“Long ago, in many times and many ways, God spoke to our fathers through the prophets, but in these last days, he has spoken to us through his Son.” –Heb. 1:1-2
At first blush, one might read these first two verses in the epistle to the Hebrews and think that the author wrongly thought he was living in the last days just before Christ’s return. In which case, we might conclude that while well-intentioned, he was simply in error and thus maybe the Epistle has less baring on our lives 2000 years later. Thankfully, this is not the case. The author of Hebrews was not in error, but rather he understood something about Christ’s first coming that we would do well to recognize today: When Jesus Christ entered into this world, died and was resurrected to the right hand of God, he brought about the beginning of the end.
The “last days” began with Christ, and will continue until his second coming. When Christ came, eternity invaded time, and thus we are already experiencing the blessings of the new heavens and the new earth. Christ brought his kingdom into the present, and so when we are in Christ, we too share in the blessings of the age to come. This reality is what Hebrews 1:1-2 is talking about. Far from being the final few days before Chris returns, the last days are those days between his first and second coming in which he is building his church through his elect people. His kingdom is a present reality. It has been inaugurated with Christ’s ascension to the right hand of God, and it will culminate when he returns for his people, puts an end to sin, death and Satan, and establishes the age to come in its magnificent fulness.
The Greek text just below the title is from Revelation 17:14 and reads, “They made war on the Lamb, and the Lamb conquered them because he is Lord of lords and King of kings…” The passage goes on to say, “…and those with Him are called and elect and faithful.” This refers to Christ’s absolute Kingship demonstrated at his second coming, which he guaranteed when he came first as the atoning sacrifice. Because of Christ’s first coming, those called by God will certainly take part in the victory of his second coming.
Christ is the beginning of the end.