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Where Is Our World Headed?
(Part 7)

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Paul wrote these words in 1 Thessalonians 4:17 "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." We often hear this verse quoted whenever people are talking about the Rapture. But unfortunately, the preceding verse is usually left out: "For the Lord Himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first" (verse 16). Today, many are teaching that the soon coming of our Lord Jesus will be a silent and low-key type of event; but on the contrary, Paul taught that a loud "shout" and the "trump of God" will accompany the return of Christ.

Another important aspect of Matthew 24:31 is the fact that Jesus tells us that "His angels" will be with Him as He returns. Christ goes on to say in Matthew 25:31 "When the Son of man shall come in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him, then shall He sit upon the throne of His glory". Every single angel is going to be with the Lord when He comes back! That's quite remarkable when you consider that Revelation 5:11 informs us that there are "ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousands of thousands" of angels! (See also Daniel 7:9-10) We can't even begin to imagine how bright the coming of Jesus will be, since the the light of just one angel made the guards at Christ's tomb to fall like dead men (Matthew 28:2-4).

But isn't Jesus supposed to first come silently in order to take all the Christians out of the world and give them the rewards of heaven? Is that what the Bible teaches? Consider the words of Jesus in Matthew 16:27 "For the Son of man shall come in the glory of His Father with His angels and then He shall reward every man according to His works." Jesus clearly taught that the rewards won't be given out until He comes in all His glory and with all His beaming angels. (Compare this with what He said in Matthew 25:31-32 and Revelation 22:12) The apostle Paul also spoke in a similar manner: "Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day", what day is Paul talking about here? Let's read on: "and not to me only, but unto all them also that love His appearing." (2 Timothy 4:8) So this goes right along with what Jesus said: the Lord will hand out all the rewards when Christ makes His grand appearance. (See also 1 Thessalonians 2:19)

The Second Coming Will Be Very Dramatic

But Does the Bible teach that Jesus will rapture away Christians and bring them to heaven 7 years before His final return? No, the verses we've looked at today show that there will be one 1 return of Christ, not 2 separate ones.

This is a very important subject and there are a lot of misconceptions floating around today. Already we've discovered that the second coming of Jesus will be a a worldwide, once and for all event, but we still have more details to address; so join us again next time when we'll take a deeper look into this subject and answer many more questions. Until then, remember that when it comes to the return of Christ, the details are important, but the critical issue is whether or not you and I are ready for it.
(Mark 13:32-37)

We'll find out more next time!




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