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1 Thessalonians 1:9-10  For they themselves shew of us what manner of entering in we had unto you, and how ye turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God; (10)  And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come

Good morning! As I look at today’s picture, I can almost see the Lord at the sunrise, behind the cloud, eagerly awaiting the go ahead from the Father to meet us there! Can’t you? I look for the Rapture daily in eager anticipation that our earthly trials will one day be over! I think of spending eternity with Christ and being able to worship at His feet!

Are you as excited as I am? Please go ahead and leave a comment so we can anticipate His return together! Many, however, don’t believe that the Church will be spared from the Tribulation. How sad for them! I joke around and reply, “Well, won’t they be pleasantly surprised when we are”! But what is there for the believer to look forward to or encourage one another with if all there is is seven years of the horrible judgment of God’s wrath? Why would Jesus say what He did in Luke 21:36? If the Church is to go through the Tribulation period, there is no escaping!

Luke 21:36  Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.

We believe that the Rapture is imminent. This word means literally means hanging over, impending, threatening. It can happen at any time. The Apostle Paul taught it in AD 51, reader! So go ahead and re-read todays two verses and imagine Paul’s motivation when he wrote about the Rapture. The Thessalonians were side tracked by deceivers by those who were saying that the Rapture had already happened and that they had entered the Tribulation period. When Paul heard this, he wrote to them:

2 Thessalonians 2:1-3  Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him,  (2)  That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand. (3) Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;

Paul had taught them properly and they were being deceived; much like today! The belief in the Pre-Tribulation Rapture is being attacked today. People scoff exactly like the Apostle Peter warned of in:

2 Peter 3:4  And saying, Where is the promise of his coming? for since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation.

The Tribulation cannot start until a great falling away first comes and the Antichrist is revealed. The Antichrist is revealed at the signing of a peace treaty with Israel, as we see in Daniel 9:27. All these things have a timing. The Rapture does not. God did not have Noah build the ark when it first started raining. No! It took Noah about 55-75 years to build it. The ark kept the judgment waters from Noah and his family. That same ark didn’t have a stern, helm or bow. Noah didn’t know when the rain was coming until it began to rain! Remember, it had never rained until then; this is why the people mocked Noah! (See Genesis 2:5-6) All these things were totally under God’s control. In fact, God Himself shut the door to the ark, locking the eight survivors inside safe and sound. After the waters abated, Noah and his family were left to populate the earth.

Now look at how our Ark, Jesus, provides for His Church. Once we are saved, we enter into His protection. His payment on the cross for our sins gives us the entrance into His ark and He will protect us from the wrath to come. He takes us in the Rapture, (Revelation 3:10, 4:1) and shelters us until it is time to return to earth at His Second Coming. Christ judges the earth and we enter the millennial period into His earthly Kingdom! Tribulation saints who are alive at His coming, will populate the earth!

The imminence of the Rapture can only be seen using the pre-Tribulation view. There is no timing, as we’ve seen with the Thessalonians in 2 Thessalonians 2:1-2. But if you have a different view, there is a definite time. If you think the Rapture will occur in mid tribulation times, then you have a definite timing because the Tribulation will be seven years. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see that half of seven years is three and a half years. As well, if you think the Rapture will occur post Tribulation, you see that seven years of judgment have occurred and it’s time for the Rapture. Why then would the Thessalonians be afraid that it had already occurred?

Matthew 24:42  Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come.

We are told by Christ Himself that we should watch because we don’t know the hour that He will come. If we don’t know when He will return for us, it keeps us watching. However, if we know it’s mid or post Tribulation, we don’t have to be watching because we know the day. What stops a person from saying, “I will live how I want and the week before the Rapture, I will get right with God?” With a pre-Tribulation Rapture view, the believer is watching and living for the Lord so he is not caught of guard!

So we see that the Thessalonians were living in expectation of Christ’s return. The Apostle Paul instructed the believers at Thessalonica that they did not need to heed signs and times, because the New Testament believer has been promised redemption from the “day of darkness” that shall overcome the whole world (1 Thess. 5:1-9).

1 Thessalonians 5:1-9  But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you.  (2)  For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night.  (3)  For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape.  (4)  But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief.  (5)  Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness.  (6)  Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober.  (7)  For they that sleep sleep in the night; and they that be drunken are drunken in the night.  ( 8 )  But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation.  (9)  For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ,

The church is not waiting for the appearing of the Antichrist, but for the redemption of the Son of God, the Lord Jesus Christ. Does this excite you, reader? It surely does me! But to the one who is not saved, it is a different story. Friend, it is no coincidence that God has placed you here for such a time as this so that you may be saved. Please click here and the link will open up in a separate tab to You Can Be Born Again and Know It!