We prefer (I suppose) to find a label for things. It is a clumsy thing to have to say to someone, "Hand me that thing-a-ma-jig over there.". You inquiring; "Which?", indicates a faulty labeling on my part. And; "You know, the doo-hickey thing right in front of you", is not really a very helpful clarification. For good or ill, we love labels so as to better grasp "what things really are", or more pointedly "who" (that we imagine) you are! Words descriptive of persons like "creative, surly, shy," and similar tags might be somewhat less confusing, but they keep leading "in and up", or would that be "narrower and finer"? That is; we would actually prefer to find out (but prefer to not directly ask), if you are a "liberal, conservative, or a whack-o". We won't (usually) rest until we find out how "best" to (secretly) classify you.
The keen insight of this particular C.P.E. is that; if labeling works as a three flavor choice, then (possibly) a time function might be used in a diagrammatic fashion, so to reverse-label we ourselves, as those "three-ist biased label applicators". Time, (it appears to me) seems to be nicely dividable into three natural classes. We have first, the past, then that constantly disappearing present, and finally the future. We, simultaneously having the three "political" labels just now noted above, might possibly be able to align the two categories? And if this be carried off correctly, mightn't this shed a bit of light on both those we label, and also upon ourselves; as those-labeling?
Further, I propose to use an actual time based event, with it's three perspectives, so that we don't wander too far off into abstract land. Concretely then, someone once told me that there is no "zero" year on timelines. I haven't a clue why this would be true, but if it is; we would proceed forward in time from 1 B.C., to the following year, 1 A.D., is this even correct? Beats me. Zero-year (regardless here of the date of Christ's actual birth), would correspond in my idea as "the present". So then, B.C. (no, I still refuse to use B.C.E. and C.E.) in this illustration would be "the past", and you can guess the rest of it.
So then, the whacky missing year at the middle of time corresponds thus (a bit) to one of the three political options. Let's talk about that one first. Words like "radical, unpredictable, loose-cannon" and such like; are describing a class of individuals that we don't normally feel safe around, in that they are (we believe) "politically unreliable", they possess "whack". By this we mean that when it comes to "choosing up sides" (left/right), these folks appear to be permanently on vacation, or consistently voting "none of the above" in elections. As such, they are either "ruining the inertial mass of collective progress" (liberal), or they are failing to dig in their heels, so as to "take a stand, to turn back the forces of chaos in the land" (conservative). Failing to join either "side", they are in the middle, which time-wise corresponds to "the present". Ya with me so far?
The present, as in "Come" is a mystifying thing for us. Looking forward, all history-past (apparently?) leads up to "it", but the width of "it" remains so narrow as to defy measurement? Or looking backward, as we recall "the moment", we keep finding that for all time future, we can clearly set apart to remember this width of zero-wide time, so to recall a given moment (the '"now" we refer to here). That is normal enough, isn't it?
So, for our historical example then, the year-zero event would be the birth of Messiah, regardless of His actual date of birth, okay? So "whack" prevails just (at this then-present) "now". Mary is confused by the visitation, Joseph is about to divorce the girl, the empire is in upheaval over a census, Herod wants to murder the kid, low-life shepherds are suddenly acting like a gang of zealot prophets, bigshot PhD's are doing overland pilgrimages to visit a foreign newborn, and the young couple escape on foot in the middle of the night, for their lives; chaos is erupting! That present "whack" moment in question had been predicted, from as far back as the eviction from Eden, it had been ratified by Word, underscored by both promise and threat, foreshadowed by sign, ceremony and festival. It had been typified in men's lives, and the whole Israelite nation awaited it. Yet when in the moment-present (which we discuss) it finally did arrive, who recognized it as the centerpiece of history? Answer, nobody! Well, that's a bit harsh, those informed by God through sign (the star), and by visitation (the angels); at least attended the event. But how much of it, which we (now) "get", they at that moment "got"; I don't know. So, to the politically "unreliable" element, (whack-o) we apply the label, because chaotically they belong in neither camp. Kinda sorta, this works as a "present" time function then. It would correspond to the middle word "Come", in today's title.
Likewise, the first "Coming" element would refer to those looking "ahead"; those calling themselves (this week) "progressive". On the calendar, this would be B.C., those awaiting the day. A kind of spirituality-minus-fact prevails here, it seems to me. The actual and real time events are never crucial in this Coming. It's the feel of things, the drift, the big ideas which prevail here. Martha says to Jesus "I believe you are the Coming One". She was prepared to accept a non-specific, and generalized resurrection, in an ill-defined and hazy future. The harsh and crass matter of a brother stumbling back (!) out of his recently hewn grave (the then present ex-stiff) was simply not on her radar. She is a "liberal" in this sense. Interested in building co-operation, for a collective action of the many "for us to all get behind", here we see the big picture of growth, of security, of even the having of a future to discuss! Looking "forward" in time, gives drift but not detail. For detail, we look "back". In this model then, the first "Coming" in our title is a bit like the hints and whispers given in the O.T. about "that great and terrible day", which is forward of us in time.
The other "Coming" then, would (time-wise) refer to the "opposite"; those surly "conservatives". If our illustration here is workable (and we wonder), then we would suppose that this final grouping would direct us "backward". Conservers appreciate those hard fought historical battles wherein a man, or a small cadre of friends made huge changes for the better in lives and nations. Frequently, they retell the glories of mighty conquests of old; which dragged from tyrant hands our precious freedoms. They repeatedly discuss freedom plus responsibility as a kind of recipe we ought apply in this present "whack" era of ours, so as to achieve "real progress". The pointing finger of "Coming" thus, usually asserts that we are (at present) stupidly "taking for granted", something or other, or to that effect. Oddly, as classifiers of persons, we ought take notice just here of an oddity. The original "called-out-ones" (church) were a sect of Judaism. But if our phrase is "Coming, Come, Coming", then the "missing aspect" here is the future of conserve, as it were. Simply, the grand insight of the founding fathers of faith was to divide "the present". That predicted great and terrible day of the LORD, was split into a two stage affair, or perhaps it was to simply elongate and enlarge "the present" such that "day" becomes a 2000 year-plus "moment"?
Anyhow, the second "Coming" appears to be reverse formatted! The conserve group is looking back, at that horrid bloody tree, and the sheer facty-historical-ness of it all. But ought not a forward look prevail just here? And I don't mean a forward look as the liberal proposes, that squishy, good-feel, non-specific environment of growth to come, but a precise and new specific whack moment ahead? And the ultimate whack-chaos episode of the Almighty manifesting in Person (armed for war for instance), certainly qualifies! If our original missing year-zero corresponds to "whack", then (from this perspective) the Coming unknown year-x (the Return!) is predicting "future-whack", and this lines up with He as The Actual-Factual. So, oddly then, these folks ought be the one's guarding the future, but certainly appear to be pointed in the wrong direction!
Little Jack Horner, sitting in corners, inserts thumbs into pie, or so it is said. Odd boy, that Jack is; but from his point of view, at least he gets the whole pie! After all who would want a piece after the kid just got done cramming his thumbs in there? We keep choosing to tag others as 1/3rd of the pie-ers. At least Jack is smart enough to claim the whole thing! And this is my brainwave here. We in a private and unannounced super class of combined-three, much prefer to identify others as 1/3rd-ers. They "must be" conservative, "have to be" liberal, or "obviously" are whacky, but as a classifier, this fractionalism conveniently does not apply to myself! Ain't that handy?
From here then, we can see the way of it. The Christ of God, the One expected, shows up on and in-time, He recalls, and is patient. In brief, the Guy is "holy". We speak, along with the elders; "Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord GOD (the Almighty) who was, and is, and is to come!". Holy is formatting as an "Is-over/in-time", and so the whole pie is in fact the correct view, while remaining (to us) inaccessible, we the deeply un-holy.
This can only mean for us that (at minimum) hope is real! The very same hard-logic factual approach the conserve demands, is cast "forward" into the "second" Coming. That "day" will hit like a bear-trap, bam, whoosh, it's done, so it is the ultimate chaotic "whack". It means the "wisdom" of this age has been inverted. In that "first day" the conservatives, and liberals joined ranks to kill and toss the body over the fence. The zealots feared Him, and reproached for His not "going far enough". He, walking in integrity, is hated by all the "wise-pie-guys". Insulting the (only) perfect man, they lose the power to "define" (correctly) anything, and in their hatred are themselves defined! He walking in loyalty, the conservers are ashamed, Him walking in peace, the liberalizing are silenced, His walk in an author-ity which serves the lowly, the zealots go hang themselves. . .
Coming, Come, Coming is for our welfare. In our daily weaknesses and failures, He reminds of the once-for-all transaction (whack), rehearses His Own track record of care for us (conserve), and Personally guarantees a wholesome and lively future (liberate).
Our puny "wisdom" has us meanwhile over here trying to "forgive ourselves", while simultaneously "forgetting" the past; so as to "create (one of many possible) a future" for ourselves. Our lousy "wisdom" hates Him, and all He brings. . . and for no good reason. Then we turn clean around to accuse Him of unreasonableness? It is this very malice of ours which is the main evidence against us as persons. And moreover, in and of our own selves we are both unwilling and unable to even admit the evidence exists?
We are forced then, by our own fallen nature; right into this self justification, plus this labeling of others as "the problem". Unless He heal, unless He give sight, unless He secure our way, life really is a meaningless and destructive (pointless) mess. And that would be true, if it were indeed the case that we ourselves were alone. Newsflash; we have never been, are not now, and nor ever shall (actually) be alone! The central brainwashing at Eden, was that our high treason cut us off from Him. He never agreed to participate in that hallucination.
In horror movies, "zombies" are "the living-dead". To them, (to zombies, that is) the "dead-living" would be an alarming development. Believers are born twice, and die once. Zombies are born once, and die twice, there can be no real and lasting friendship in such an arrangement. So, in the living arrangement, besides hope making sense, love too lives, because He does. Here, trust can grow, because of His impeccable track record. We thus (the re-born), are an abomination to the "world". And we "feel-for" them, we welcome them into sanity, out of their fractional pie-isms. We "think the best" of (and for) them, in that they are (at present) us, as we were. Corpses never volunteer for anything! We trust Him, for them, entrusting their lives into His sane goodness, His Almighty wholesome-ness.
These three remain, faith, hope, and love. We trust forward unto our true homeland, also looking back to recall His stellar track record of friendship, so thus to be strengthened, in tackling the chaos which is just now erupting (again). . . with a welcoming smile and a warm embrace.
He is making us more like Him, the Holy One! He Who Was, Is, and Ever-Shall-Be, it's His-story after all. The "stretching of whack" (that Presence amid the chaos of fact), is being predicted "forward", as a kind of "place" we were "destined-for", from "prior to things". Net result?
He is building a cadre of the fearless and glad, a throng of the confident doers, those remembering ever after the sweet moment He first embraced our sadness. This new-ness; unto "the aion of aions". We would likely call it "time-cubed" or some such.