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How Near the Rapture?

We’ve just paused to examine, to marvel over, the coming of the Christ child—the Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world. Christmas is, therefore, perhaps an even better time than ever to think on Christ coming again to wrap up all involved in that majestic purpose the Lord declared “finished” from the cross at Calvary.

God’s Word–Jesus, Himself—gave many signals of the wrap-up of matters involving the reclamation of this fallen planet. All of those signals were, most end-times seminary scholars seem to believe, issued to point to the Second ComingThe signs Jesus gave, we are told by many in this category, don’t include the mystery later revealed to and by the apostle Paul. I refer to the first phase of the Second Coming. Paul divulged that “mystery in the following, of course.

Behold, I show you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. (1 Corinthians 15:51–5)

I disagree with my friends who believe Jesus never alluded to the Rapture while He was on earth in the flesh, preparing to sacrifice Himself for the sins of fallen mankind. I believe that He did so while speaking to His closest disciples who asked Him questions after He said He would be going away (speaking of His death, burial, resurrection, and ascension.). The Lord said:

Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. 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. (John 14:1–3)

Jesus was talking here about His return to receive believers into His presence–above the earth (in the clouds); he wasn’t speaking of meeting them on the earth’s surface. Christ’s words here involve the “mystery” the Paul referenced in 1 Corinthians 15. Jesus will call all believers to Himself in the air (Revelation 4:1).

Like in the case of His words to His disciples and to us down through the centuries, Jesus’ prophecy concerning the wrap-up of this earth age was meant for all believers, not just for the Jews, I’m convinced. The seminarians mostly believe that Matthew, chapters 24 and 25 (the Olivet Discourse), were given only for Israel. The signs given in the Olivet Discourse, they proclaim, therefore don’t include mention of the Rapture of the church of this present age.

We have looked many times in these commentaries how and why I (and may I add significant Bible prophecy teachers) find Christ’s reference to that stunning event in the Olivet Discourse—for example, in Matthew 24:36–42 and again in Luke 17:26–30. We believe these words of our Lord speak explicitly about a time like the “days of Lot” and how He will intervene catastrophically just as He did in that evil time.

Jesus said people will be buying selling, marrying, planting, and building just as usual. He will intervene into that wicked, evil time, and judgment will fall that very day. But first, just as Lot was taken out of Sodom, so believers must, in that future day of evil and wickedness, be removed is the clear implication.

How near the Rapture?  How soon might we hear this call to all believers?

We’ve explored weekly all of the things going on in this world of corruption. We’ve especially dealt with the great deception and deceivers the Lord Jesus warned of. We’ve examined in detail every signal, from deception and deceivers to the precise characteristics of end-times man given by Paul in 2 Timothy chapter 3. They are all front and center in every news cycle as we live our daily lives. We are, as was Lot in Sodom, sorely vexed!

We face such wickedness not just monthly and yearly, but during every minute of every hour during the news cycles that bring ubiquitous evil-doings before us. Therefore, our questions about the nearness of the Rapture is a good one.

The days of Lot seem to surround us. When such ungodly, unholy, vileness reaches a level that God no longer can abide it, He acts. His next action in dealing with the corruption defiling mankind is scheduled as the last seven years of human history before the Second Advent—the Tribulation.

First, remember, His people—all born again of this Age of Grace (Church Age)—must be removed.

Has the present earth system corrupted itself to the point that the Lord must once again—and finally—begin deconstructing through the most horrendous judgment in history, this incorrigible world of rebellion? In reading the following, I believe we can get a sense of the Lord’s holy mind through words He gave David millennia ago. I see them as comfort in these times.

Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for him: fret not thyself because of him who prospereth in his way, because of the man who bringeth wicked devices to pass.

Cease from anger, and forsake wrath: fret not thyself in any wise to do evil.

For evildoers shall be cut off: but those that wait upon the LORD, they shall inherit the earth.

For yet a little while, and the wicked shall not be: yea, thou shalt diligently consider his place, and it shall not be.

But the meek shall inherit the earth; and shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace.

 The wicked plotteth against the just, and gnasheth upon him with his teeth.

 The Lord shall laugh at him: for he seeth that his day is coming.

 The wicked have drawn out the sword, and have bent their bow, to cast down the poor and needy, and to slay such as be of upright conversation.

 Their sword shall enter into their own heart, and their bows shall be broken.

 A little that a righteous man hath is better than the riches of many wicked.

 For the arms of the wicked shall be broken: but the LORD upholdeth the righteous.

 The LORD knoweth the days of the upright: and their inheritance shall be for ever.

 They shall not be ashamed in the evil time: and in the days of famine they shall be satisfied.

 But the wicked shall perish, and the enemies of the LORD shall be as the fat of lambs: they shall consume; into smoke shall they consume away.

 The wicked borroweth, and payeth not again: but the righteous sheweth mercy, and giveth.

 For such as be blessed of him shall inherit the earth; and they that be cursed of him shall be cut off. (Psalms 37:7–22)


17 Comments

  1. Carol Cole says:

    Whew ! I really really needed this encouragement, Terry. Thank you, my brother.

    Carol Cole Atlanta

    Sent from my iPad

    >

  2. huberrw6559 says:

    I agree with Carol. Ones like Terry, our dear brother in Christ, are a life-line for me during these end days to keep us looking –to that blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior JESUS CHRIST!

  3. ChristineInCleveland says:

    Jesus Christ is my anchor, my only true source of hope & peace as I navigate through each & every day. Terry, your words express everything I feel as we see the wicked prosper all around us. It only means how much closer we must be to the great & wonderful moment when our Lord & Savior will shout “Come up here!”

  4. Ed Wood says:

    Besides the widespread evil of Noah’s and Lot’s respective times, there was, no hint that something catastrophic, as far the general populations of those places were concerned, was about to happen. It was “business as usual.”

    Right now I don’t see us in that place, not with Covid overshadowing life on Earth. I think this may go several ways.

    Three possibilities of what may be many:

    1) People don’t ever make a stand against it and tyranny becomes business as usual.

    2) People resisting the outrageous Covid mandates get crushed and forgotten. Again, tyranny becomes business as usual.

    3) Covid subsides (whether in fact or by manufactured propaganda) and everyone thinks the good days of freedom are back again – and this all becomes business as usual.

    We will only be in the eye of the storm, the first part having passed by. The second half is still on the way, but below the horizon so the wall clouds can’t be seen.

    I think it will be into this situation of apparent calm that Jesus will take his own off Earth just because that will be so much more unexpected than him coming during the storm.

    My own plan is to be even more watchful if any of the above or similar scenarios come to pass and I also think the Lord will not let it come a a surprise to any believer who does so.

    Here’s why:

    Amos {3:7} Surely the Lord GOD will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets.

    I think believers will get a “notification,” either directly from God or by someone who did get the message in that manner who passes it along. Whichever the case, I don’t think any believer will be left in the dark.

    Now it may be years ahead of time as it was for Noah, or on the very brink of the even, as it was for Lot. I think our current situation down here favors the latter.

    My advice: Keep looking up and stay tuned!

    • Carolyn Judith Moore says:

      I, too, believe we are living in the days of Lot now. It would appear that many, if not most, of our national leaders have sold their souls to the devil’s lies (eg. “Hath God said…? You shall not surely die.”) The MSM broadcasts these lies, promotes them, and threatens anyone who may not agree with them. My heart breaks for my nation, my children and grandchildren. And it breaks for many in the church who have bought into such lies.

      • Ed Wood says:

        You are right. Noah and his family, Lot and his family, except, maybe, for his wife who looked back to the city that was already lost, were the very examples of a “remnant people.”

        That’s the same for us who recognize the evil and that God has a plan to deal with those who embrace it and those who recognize and reject it.

        Though I never had kids, I am saddened to see the kind of world that those of the generations after mine have brought them into. Yet, we all know how Jesus felt about children, right?

        I think we can let that knowledge help take some of the edge off that regret.

        Jesus ALWAYS does the right thing!

      • Carolyn Judith Moore says:

        I, too, am deeply saddened to observe what my grandchildren are facing amid all the degradation and degeneration of our beloved America, let alone the entire world. I am 84 now. Despite all that I have seen in my lifetime, I am daily appalled at the ugly evil that has infiltrated our homes, schools, churches and culture.

        BUT GOD…! HE has the final say. HE will judge in righteousness. All I can say is, we must cling to His nail-pierced hand and look into His face for our comfort and hope.

        “…Nothing in my hand I bring; Simply to Thy cross I cling. Rock of Ages, cleft for me, Let me hide myself in Thee…”

        May His presence and promise be our comfort and joy until that Day when we see Him at last, face to face!

  5. Kathryn says:

    Thank you Terry for being a voice of sanity in this increasingly evil world. My mind is on heavenly things because this earth and its evil system has nothing to offer me. I pray that you will continue to bless us with your insight and that the Lord will richly bless you. Come Lord Jesus!

  6. billyswinea3737 says:

    PRAISE GOD PRAISE GOD HE’S COMMING FOR ME!!!

  7. Harvey says:

    What an awesome moment it will be. Spoken about, waited for, hoped for, yearned for, yet unexpected in the very moment. We must continue about our Fathers business , not wishing that any be lost, until it actually happens, hoping that we have left nothing unsaid, nothing undone that would allow us to regret if we could only remember in that breathless moment when all is finished and we are with Him forever.

  8. Amen and Amen. Thank you.

  9. Ed Wood says:

    Here’s another point favoring pre-Trib rapture, based on the days of Lot at Noah:

    God people were saved BEFORE the cataclysms, when things seemed to be relatively normal, not AFTER they were already in progress.

  10. Ted Bates says:

    Thank you. From the times and what we see right before our eyes we know that the time is short, short for the world and short for us. We know that we should recognize the season of His coming but not the day or hour. I am unsure as to what Jesus meant by this generation will not pass away until all things are fulfilled. If the generation begins with Israel, we need to ask what is the actual length of time is a generation. I tried Psalm 90 that says a lifespan is 70 or 80 years if of strength. That would mean that from 1948 add 80 years you end in 2028. If all things includes the the 7 year tribulation, you subtract 7 years. That would mean that the rapture has to occur before the end of 2021. Today is 2022. That rules out this interpretation. We know from the signs that time is short. Right now I am getting off the helm of Starship Enterprise and letting the Lord take over. I know I can’t handle this world and I am much happier releasing the burden to Him and taking a nap. I just hope the rapture is soon. I am a little weary with this wicked world. Come Lord Jesus Come.

  11. Harvey Rosieur says:

    Ted, I have always understood it to mean that of those who are witness to all of these events in their lifetime, some will still be alive at the end. For example, I was born during the Second World War, thus seeing the beginning of what Jesus described as the events which would occur, starting with wars.(Plural). The Lord told me to watch for His signs which I have done for many years and I believe we have seen everything occur which He has described. However, there is a further event which He has told me will occur during my lifetime. Foretold by the Prophet Joel , it is the outpouring of His Spirit on all flesh.( Revival, world -wide.). I can say with all confidence that this will occur and it suits Gods merciful nature to give those whom we have been praying for and others a last opportunity to turn to Him before the Rapture. Some mean-minded Christians(?) think they have had enough chance but God truly is not willing that they should perish. So I champ at the bit! . I long to be with Him, but not while there are other souls to be saved. Perhaps in our own families. Praise God for His Grace and the prayers of the faithful. What lies ahead defies my imagination.

    • Ted Bates says:

      Harvey thank you for your reply .I have some health issues and I become weary under a lot of heaviness Joe does prophesy a out the Spirit bei g poured out on all ash before the terrible day od,the Lord (Joel 2:7 ?) . And we will see just how the Lord may use His people in these days in which we live. I am just tired.

      • Carolyn Judith Moore says:

        Ted and Harvey,

        Do you know or remember the old hymn, “God Leads His Dear Children Along?” (It’s so sad to me that the old hymns are rarely heard in the church anymore.)

        It goes, “…Some through the water, some through the flood, some through the fire, but all through the Blood. Some through great sorrow, but God gives a song, Through the night season and all the day long…” Anyway, here are the words. Blessings…

        https://hymnary.org/text/in_shady_green_pastures_so_rich_and_so

        I hope you can get this. Blessing, dear brothers.

        Judy Moore

  12. Harvey says:

    Ted, I know how you must feel, but take heart. God will pour out his spirit on all flesh. This means that a refreshing will come and healing. Many do not feel they can face any more in these last days, but God will revive the weary, the sick and the lame.. He will supply all our needs This to me will be like the last act of a stage show, when all is done, all is won. Then the ‘curtain’ will come down. Halleluja! My wife and I were in the chorus of a few stage shows in our youth. What a feeling it is at the wind-up.

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