by Terry Wane Benton
Paul spoke of God showing the exceeding riches of His grace "in the ages to come" (Epheisans 2:6-7). Thus, the gospel of God's grace would keep spreading for ages to come.
Some erroneously think that Paul wrongly thought that Jesus would come back in his lifetime, but Paul knew the end of mortal life would end when Jesus returned (I Corinthians 15:22f) and he knew it would not be very soon since the gospel of grace would be showing the exceeding riches of His grace "in the ages to come." There would be many long ages of time for the gospel to spread.
John in the vision of Revelation saw a lot of things happening, including putting down of the beast (the Roman Empire) and a thousand year period, symbolic of a long time. Thus, there was no concept of the immediate return of Jesus in their lifetime. The modern AD 70 hyper-preterist gets this all wrong. There would be a lot more history, ages to come, before the final day of resurrection to immortality.
In the meantime, we need to keep exploring and enjoying the exceeding riches of His grace. We are still in the ages of grace. There will come a time when grace will no longer be offered. On the last day, we will be judged as to what we did with the exceeding riches of His grace. Dig in and enjoy while you have the chance.