What does The United Methodist Church teach about the second coming?
United Methodists have varied interpretations and understandings of the second coming of Christ as referenced in scripture. While you would find many who take a literal approach to belief in the second coming, most United Methodists would be uncertain about the meaning of the second coming.
Generally speaking, United Methodists are focused on Christ and welcoming his grace--prevenient that moves us to turn to Christ for salvation, justifying that works righteousness in us and trust for salvation, and sanctifying that perfects us in lives of love of God and neighbor. We tend not to be a speculative people. Often attention to the second coming can get pretty dicey and speculative. As the spiritual descendants of John Wesley, we are practical people attending to Christ present in worship and in the daily life and needs of others around us.
If you want to get a sample of one of Wesley's sermons related to the last things, you might read his sermon on "The Great Assize."
Rev. Dan Benedict
Center for Worship Resourcing
General Board of Discipleship