The Second Coming

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#145: “The Second Coming”
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Matthew 24:36-42

36"No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.

37As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. 38For in the days before the flood, people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day Noah entered the ark; 39and they knew nothing about what would happen until the flood came and took them all away. That is how it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. 40Two men will be in the field; one will be taken and the other left. 41Two women will be grinding with a hand mill; one will be taken and the other left.

42"Therefore keep watch, because you do not know on what day your Lord will come.

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The Second Coming

“The Second Coming” is episode #145 of the Adventures in Odyssey audio series. It was written by Paul McCusker, and originally aired on March 2, 1991.


After reading a book, Melanie Jacobs believes she knows the exact date of Christ's return.


Melanie Jacobs is excited. She’s been reading a book by televangelist Henry Fernbank about the second coming of Jesus. Henry has used mathematics and symbols from Revelation to come up with a formula to predict when Christ will return. According to Henry, it’s this Saturday!

Melanie is so convinced Fernbank is right, she makes a bunch of posters about the second coming and hangs them up around town. Her parents run after her, frantically taking down the posters. Finally, they talk with her and try to explain that the Bible says no one knows the exact day of Jesus’ return.

That doesn’t stop Melanie from believing that it will be Saturday, though. When the big day arrives, she sets up a tent in the backyard. Melanie takes her Bible, a Sunday school certificate, and a sleeping bag to await the Lord’s return.

Although He doesn’t return, the whole experience deepens Melanie’s faith in Jesus and her excitement at His promised return. It also deepens her skepticism of television preachers. Melanie learns that you can’t always believe what you hear.

This plot section is too short and should be expanded. »

Discussion Questions

  1. Why was it so easy for Melanie to believe Henry Fernbank?
  2. Should Melanie have hung posters about Jesus’ second coming all around town?
    • Why or why not?
  3. What’s the best way to tell others about Jesus’ return?



  • Writer Paul McCusker wrote this episode to respond to yet another round of predictions of Christ's return he heard about in the news. He wanted kids to understand from the Bible what we can know—and not know—about that event.
  • This episode is one of very few to feature a directorial credit by Chuck Bolte, other than several of the Family Portraits episodes. Bolte shares the credit for this episode with Phil Lollar, who plays the father of the two daughters who are in turn played by Bolte's real-life daughters Sage Bolte and Erin Bolte.



Ann Jacobs: That girl’s pretty industrious when she sets her mind to it.

Robyn Jacobs: Oh sure, go ahead. When does the great Henry Fernbank think Jesus is supposed to come back?
Melanie Jacobs: Saturday! <AIO theme plays>

Robyn Jacobs: I just wanna stay out of it until it all blows over. Hope there's something good on TV. (Whit laughs a little) What?
John Whittaker: Oh, it's sad, but what you just said probably summarizes how most people really feel about the second coming — if the truth were known.

Melanie Jacobs: Hi. Did Jesus come back?
Dale Jacobs: Sorry, honey. Not tonight.
Melanie Jacobs: Oh. Maybe tomorrow?
Dale Jacobs: Could be any minute sweet heart. Could be any minute.

Melanie Jacobs: Take the sum total of the generations between Adam and Jesus based on the combined genealogies of Matthew and Luke. Then divide by 40, and add 12...

John Whittaker: Can I get you anything? Water, a tank of oxygen, or...?

John Whittaker: Melanie wants posters?
Dale Jacobs: No, no, on...
John Whittaker: She's on a poster?
Dale Jacobs: Want, um...
John Whittaker: She's on a wanted poster?!

Dale Jacobs: Calm down, honey. It's not like it's the end of the world. <beat> Then again, maybe...

Robyn Jacobs: I wanna know about the Easter Bunny!