“Therefore be patient, brethren, until the coming of the Lord. See how the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, waiting patiently for it until it receives the early and latter rain.”
Again, James uses the term “brethren.” He obviously is talking to members of the family of God throughout this section.
until the coming of the Lord.
The word “until” marks the limit of their patience. It also indicates a rationale for their patience. It is the time of consolation in God’s justice.
1 Th 4:16-18, “For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 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. 18 Therefore comfort one another with these words.”
The “coming of the Lord” in this verse is the rapture, not the 2nd coming. James refers to the rapture three times in this section (vv. 7, 8, 9). The rapture is the point when suffering will cease because we will experience the presence of Christ. They will receive relief from suffering then.
The word “coming” means appearing, presence. The rapture is the time when we will see the very presence of the Lord Jesus Christ. By the time of the writing of the book of James, Jesus has been resurrected for thirty years. James looks forward to the time when Jesus will appear, and they will see Him in His humanity. At this time, He will take them to be with Himself. This is their blessed hope.
By looking for our Lord on the tiptoe of expectancy, we orient our values to eternity and fellowship with the Lord Himself.
When the Lord Jesus comes in the rapture, it will be a time of consolation. Oppression will end forever. That is why it is our “blessed hope.”
Ti 2:13, “…looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ…”
None of us knows when the Lord Jesus will come back. We welcome that time because it will be the end of suffering and pain. It is a good thing that we do not know the time because we might slack in our responsibilities in time.
All of us should anticipate His coming because it will keep us pure. His imminent coming means that we need to be ready at any time. By looking for our Lord on the tiptoe of expectancy, we orient our values to eternity and fellowship with the Lord Himself.
1 Jn 3:2-3, “Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is. 3 And everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself, just as He is pure.”