If you are one with Christ Jesus, then you need to buckle up! Why? Because at any moment, you may find yourself rising and flying among the clouds to meet with the Lord. We only need to look at the world’s events to come to the belief, the understanding, the realization that we are indeed living in the last days foretold by Jesus and the prophets. Moreover, the world has certainly seen an increase in global natural disasters in recent decades. The combined loss of life from earthquakes alone in the early part of the 21 century was around half a million people– men, women, and children. Still, it pales in comparison to what the Bible says has yet to come.
Then, of course, there is the constant turmoil and dissension in the Middle East with the nation Israel as the target. It is a conflict that stems from Isaac and Ishmael’s days, the sons of Abraham, as to which of the two does the inheritance of the promised land belongs. Moreover, as we watch the world’s geopolitical climate become increasingly hostile, especially against Israel, where one nation vowed to decimate that country and wipe it from the face of the earth. To top it off, we see the rapid decline of morality globally, with the United States appearing to lead the charge. This whole “cancel culture” movement seems to embrace homosexuality, abortion, same-sex unions, and so on. However, you dare not say that such behaviors and actions are not biblical in a public setting because you could face a discrimination lawsuit.
You might be thinking, “Gee thanks for this inspirational news in what might have been an otherwise gloomy day!” I respect that, so allow me to turn the corner. For those who believe and follow Jesus Christ, this is news we can use because these are among the signs and the seasons that point to our Lord’s immanent and soon return. Jesus told His disciples that there would be wars and rumors of wars, nations would rise against nations, and there would be earthquakes and famines. The Lord compared these events to “birth pangs” or labor pains that come with childbearing. In other words, the events we see today are leading towards the big event, the second coming of Jesus, just as labor pains lead to the big event of childbirth.
Jesus went on to say that these signs would also lead to the great tribulation, and the Bible further teaches that the rapture of the church will occur sometime before the tribulation period begins. Perhaps the church’s rapture, the time when all believers, both the dead and the living, shall rise to meet Jesus in the clouds, is the catalyst for the tribulation period to begin. Do not confuse the rapture with Jesus’ second coming. When the rapture occurs, Jesus will not step foot on the earth but will meet His bride, the church, in the air. When the second coming occurs, Jesus will again walk the earth and establish His 1000-year rule, known as the millennial reign.
In his letter to the Thessalonican church, apostle Paul wrote, Wait for His Son from heaven, whom He raised from the dead, that is Jesus, who rescues us from the wrath to come” (1 Thessalonians 1:10). The wrath to come is the tribulation period where God pours out His wrath upon the earth, but Jesus rescues those who believe from the coming wrath. In other words, those of us who are one with the Lord, “we’ll be outta here, man!” In his letter to both the Thessalonican and Corinthian church, Paul expressed it more elegantly. He wrote:
“For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive, who remain, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we will always be with the Lord.”1 Thessalonians 4:16-17
“In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet; for the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed.”1 Corinthians 15:52
How quick is the blink of an eye? It is about four-tenths of a second. That is how swiftly the Lord will come to take His church home to be with Him forever. Knowing this should compel all believers to renew their commitment to share the gospel and make disciples for Jesus Christ. Some people are quick to point out that the word “rapture” is not in the Bible. That is true unless you have a Latin translation that uses the word “rapturous,” which means to be caught up or swept away. Jesus said:
“I tell you, on that night,” referring to the rapture, “there will be two in one bed; one will be taken and the other will be left. There will be two women grinding at the same place; one will be taken and the other will be left. Two men will be in the field; one will be taken and the other will be left.”Luke 17:34-36
Let us put this in a modern setting. In other words, two co-workers will be working together, and one will be taken, the other left. There will be two friends on the golf course, and one will be taken, the other left. Two people will be in a car, and one will be taken, the other left. Imagine if the driver were taken, which occurs in thousands of automobiles around the world instantly.
It begs the question for us all to consider. Who in our lives will be left behind? Who have we yet to tell about Jesus? The rapture brings to light the reality that all believers will be taken away. Yet, many more non-believers will remain behind to face the tribulation, people who are our friends, colleagues, husbands, wives, brothers, sisters, mothers, and fathers. That is why sharing the gospel is critical and should be every believer’s number one priority in life.
Therefore, be encouraged to get out and share the gospel daily. Why? Well, Jesus commanded us to do so, and according to the signs of the times, time is getting short.
A Faithful Sower Publishing is a limited liability company that is dedicated to sharing the good news of Jesus Christ and help guide people into a relationship with God and grow in that relationship. The publisher, editors, and authors achieve that end through prayer and the careful exposition of the Bible to best explain and illustrate Scripture in a meaningful engaging way so others can apply its truths to their everyday life. The mission of the the A Faithful Sower ministry team is to carry out the Great Commission issued to all who choose to follow Jesus Christ as their Savior and Lord. Jesus commands us to “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation” (Mark 16:15).