1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 “For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.”
The word ‘rapture’ does not appear anywhere in the Bible. Yet, we use it to describe the event that will most certainly occur according to today’s passage. This event has happened before.
Genesis 5:23-24 “And all the days of Enoch were three hundred sixty and five years: And Enoch walked with God: and he was not; for God took him.”
Enoch is one. Elijah is another.
2 Kings 2:11 “And it came to pass, as they still went on, and talked, that, behold, there appeared a chariot of fire, and horses of fire, and parted them both asunder; and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven.”
The Lord Jesus Christ rose into Heaven while onlookers watched the whole event unfold.
Luke 24:50-51 “And he led them out as far as to Bethany, and he lifted up his hands, and blessed them. And it came to pass, while he blessed them, he was parted from them, and carried up into heaven.”
Many will take issue with the actual date and time of this prophesied event. So much so that many miss the point entirely.
Jesus told us He was going to come again.
John 14:2-3 “In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.”
So much discussion revolves around what I call the ‘silent argument.’ It means that God’s Word is silent on the date or the time, but speaks to the fact that it will most definitely occur.
Acts 1:10-11 “And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel; Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.”
2 Peter 3:10 “But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up.”
I look at it this way:
If we genuinely believe that Jesus will come, why not begin now to be prepared for when He does? Prophesy tells us that there is no other prophesies that need to be fulfilled for Christ to come.
When Israel became a nation on May 14th, 1948, it was the last prophecy that needed to be fulfilled before Christ’s second coming. Since that time, the only event Christianity is awaiting is the second coming of the Lord Jesus Christ.
We all have our favorite holidays for which we wait expectantly. They are as tangible and real to us because they are celebrated annually. We know they exist.
The rapture is an event that must be taken by faith. Believing that Jesus will come to take His bride, the church, with Him into Heaven takes a certain amount of faith. That faith is not blind, based upon the word of man. It is based on God’s Word and God’s promise that He will do what He said He will do.
This morning, can I challenge your faith to live this day as if Christ were to come in the next 24 hours?
What would you do differently?
Would you pray more?
Would you tell that loved one or family member what they need to do to go to Heaven?
If we know this event could happen at any moment, why do we refuse to change our lives accordingly?
I just want to give you a thought to carry you through this day.