Coming (παρουσία, being present) OF CHRIST, a phrase employed,
(1.) literally, in reference to our Lord's first appearance in the flesh (1Jo 5:20; 2Jo 1:7), or to his future appearance at the last day to fulfill his promises to raise the dead and judge the world in righteousness (Ac 1:11; Ac 3:20-21; 1Th 4:15; 2Ti 4:1; Heb 9:28).
(2.) Metaphorically, Christ is said to come when his Gospel is introduced or preached in any place by his ministers (Joh 15:22; Eph 2:17); when his church or kingdom is visibly or powerfully established in the world (Mt 16:28); when he bestows upon believers the influence of his spirit, and the peculiar tokens of his love (Joh 14:18,23,28); when he executes his judgment on wicked communities who reject or corrupt his Gospel (2Th 2:8); and when his providence calls us away from the world by death, as preparatory to the judgment of the last day (Mt 24:42). The basis of this metaphorical usage in regard to the coming of Christ is the same as in relation to the coming of God; that as he governs the world, every specific act of his providence and authority indicates his presence in a more striking manner to human conception, on the principle that no agent can act where he is not. See ESCHATOLOGY.