Thank you for joining us in part two of our rapture discourse. Part one of the discourse was very enlightening and we are looking forward to more insights from the Master Teacher (Holy Spirit) throughout the discourse. He has shared some very insightful teachings that (as for me) has me pondering and meditating on. Those insights and teachings have added a fuel to the fires of my soul and has increased my anticipation of the Lord’s return.
In our discourse of Rapture part 1, we brought home the point of man living forever. We pointed out the fact that eternity is to be spent somewhere be it with Christ or in the Lake of Fire. Many people shun these types of truths and would rather the topic of death, the grave, hell, the lake of fire, and even eternity with Jesus remain an undisclosed subject. God in all of his fairness and righteousness has not ordained this topic not to be a topic for discussion. In fact, it is God who has introduced us to these topics of this life’s events.
We have established through the word of God and both the insights and wisdom of the Holy Spirit that physical and or earthly death is not the finality of man. God being an ever-living Spiritual Being has created man in this very likeness of Himself: ever spiritual beings. The body is the house or tent that houses who and what we really are; spiritual beings. The bible has addressed the body as an earthly tabernacle and a tent. Apostle Paul had very interesting things to say in reference to this. 2 Corinthians 1-10 from the Amplified Version of the bible says this:
“For we know that if the earthly tent [our physical body] which is our house is torn down [through death], we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. 2 For indeed in this house (the physical body) we groan, longing to be clothed with our [immortal, eternal] celestial dwelling, 3 so that by putting it on we will not be found naked. 4 For while we are in this tent, we groan, being burdened [often weighed down, oppressed], not that we want to be unclothed [separated by death from the body], but to be clothed, so that what is mortal [the body] will be swallowed up by life [after the resurrection]. 5 Now He who has made us and prepared us for this very purpose is God, who gave us the [Holy] Spirit as a pledge [a guarantee, a down payment on the fulfillment of His promise]. 6 So then, being always filled with good courage and confident hope, and knowing that while we are at home in the body we are absent from the Lord— 7 for we walk by faith, not by sight [living our lives in a manner consistent with our confident belief in God’s promises]— 8 we are [as I was saying] of good courage and confident hope, and prefer rather to be absent from the body and to be at home with the Lord. 9 Therefore, whether we are at home [on earth] or away from home [and with Him], it is our [constant] ambition to be pleasing to Him. 10 For we [believers will be called to account and] must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may be repaid for what has been done in the body, whether good or bad [that is, each will be held responsible for his actions, purposes, goals, motives—the use or misuse of his time, opportunities and abilities].
To be perfectly honest with you my friends, this earthly tent, tabernacle and or physical body becomes very weighty with its sins, sicknesses and diseases. It becomes very weighty from its many toils and labors. Trust me when I tell you that it is the Holy Spirit who helps us to withstand the weights that oppresses this earthly tent.
One of the greatest joys that I have when thinking on the rapture and anticipating my union with the Lord is the joy of shedding this tent to be clothed in immortality. I will not have to suffer the pains of this body, the weights of this life, the results of hard labor, the abuse of misused authority, and the heart wrenching pains of sin. As weighty and as unpleasant as the physical can be pleased, know that my utmost desire to reign with Christ is because I love him, not because of the escape from the unpleasantness of this mortal life. Escaping this wretched place of sin is simply one of the benefits that comes with loving the Lord.
WHO WILL REIGN WITH CHRIST
It is in the minds and hearts of many people that they will reign with a God in the heavens whom they have no relationship or fellowship with in this earth. We stand today to correct this deceptive way of thinking. The promise of God in 2 Corinthians of the new glorified body is a promise to only those of them who serve him whole heartily and have committed their earthly lives to him in service. These are them whom He has given the pledge of guarantee which is the seal of the Holy Spirit who richly abides in the hearts and spirits of the believer. If you have not been given or have not received this seal, then you will not reign with the Lord. We have quoted in earlier discourses Romans 8: 9 and we will again quote it here for pondering and meditation. 9 But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his. (King James Version) We sincerely pray that your pondering and meditations upon this truth of God will penetrate your hearts and minds if you have not accepted the redemptive work of Christ to make it applicable to your life.
Reigning with Christ should be at the forefront of the hearts and thoughts of believers particularly at this time in humanity’s history. We can see that despite the empty promises of governments and politicians of the world getting better and promises of making the world a better place, it is in fact growing progressively worse. We can also see that it is not in the power of man to make this present earth a utopia. As long as sin reigns and man gives himself over to the calls of sin, better is not a word that carries a lot of clout in reference to this current world’s condition. Much of the world has denied Christ as did the people who rejected God in flesh when he came to earth the first time. Rapture is the event out of the control of man that will cause much of earth’s inhabitants to wake up and stand up. It is an event that cannot be explained away and an event that points to none other than God Himself. Rapture is an event that will show governing authorities the powerlessness of their authority. It will show man that he is not in control of the world as he so thinks. Psalm 24: 1-10 from the Amplified Bible says:
The earth is the Lord’s, and the fullness of it, The world, and those who dwell in it. 2 For He has founded it upon the seas And established it upon the streams and the rivers. 3 Who may ascend onto the mountain of the Lord? And who may stand in His holy place? 4 He who has clean hands and a pure heart, Who has not lifted up his soul to what is false, Nor has sworn [oaths] deceitfully. 5 He shall receive a blessing from the Lord, And righteousness from the God of his salvation. 6 This is the generation (description) of those who diligently seek Him and require Him as their greatest need, Who seek Your face, even [as did] Jacob. Selah. 7 Lift up your heads, O gates, And be lifted up, ancient doors, That the King of glory may come in.
8 Who is the King of glory? The Lord strong and mighty, The Lord mighty in battle. 9 Lift up your heads, O gates, And lift them up, ancient doors, That the King of glory may come in. 10 Who is [He then] this King of glory? The Lord of hosts, He is the King of glory [who rules over all creation with His heavenly armies]. Selah.
Man has never been in control believers and will never be in control. Human government is a position that has been given by God. I have often heard the pride and seen the pride in people who say, “I work for the government, or I am a government employee. Somehow man believes that this is a high position. The honest truth is this: the highest position in the land is the position of a believer in the Lord. The believer holds the highest position in the earth. When Jesus came to the earth even as an infant in the womb of Mary, He held the highest position in the world. Even on the cross having been beaten, spat upon, slapped and hanged as a criminal, He held the highest position in the land. After resurrection Jesus said to his disciples who were afraid when they saw Him:
6 Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed and made appointment with them. 17 And when they saw Him, they fell down and worshiped Him; but some doubted. 18 Jesus approached and, breaking the silence, said to them, All authority (all power of rule) in heaven and on earth has been given to Me.
The catching away or removal of the church from this earth is the first major sign of the end of this world as we know it. The unexplained disappearance of millions of people at one time from this earth is going to be what starts the minds and hearts of men and women to begin to seek God. Truly the disappearances will try to be explained away with answers like aliens and the answers of God’s removal of all wicked people on the earth, yet sin and all of its unrighteousness will be running rampant in the earth more than ever before. There will be so much tragedy and chaos. And death will take a devastating toll. Though many erroneous answers will be given to explain rapture; this major event in world history, those of them who played church, shunned the good news of the Gospel of Jesus Christ will know in their hearts what the disappearances are all about and they will also know who is behind the disappearances. For those of them who had sat under the word of truth whether they believed it or not then, will at this time receive those teachings and truths to make it applicable to their lives. These persons will become preachers and teachers of the gospel of Christ strongly during the first three and a half years of the tribulation period when the antichrist, the man of sin has not gone full force into his acts of hatred for Jesus Christ through his horrific acts of torment to the chosen people of God. The converted believers at this time will join forces with the 144,000 Jewish believers who will evangelize the world for Christ under the protected seal of God. Also the two witnesses at the wailing wall in Jerusalem will for three and a half years preached the Gospel of Christ to the Jews and all who will adhere to their teachings. The Gospel of the Kingdom will reach to all the ends of the world even as Jesus has said. Matthew 24: 1-14:
Jesus left the temple area and was going on His way when His disciples came up to Him to call His attention to the [magnificent and massive] buildings of the temple. 2 And He said to them, “Do you see all these things? I assure you and most solemnly say to you, not one stone here will be left on another, which will not be torn down.” 3 While Jesus was seated on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to Him privately, and said, “Tell us, when will this [destruction of the temple] take place, and what will be the sign of Your coming, and of the end (completion, consummation) of the age? 4 Jesus answered, “Be careful that no one misleads you [deceiving you and leading you into error]. 5 For many will come in My name [misusing it, and appropriating the strength of the name which belongs to Me], saying, ‘I am the Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed),’ and they will mislead many. 6 You will continually hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not frightened, for those things must take place, but that is not yet the end [of the age]. 7 For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and there will be famines and earthquakes in various places. 8 But all these things are merely the beginning of birth pangs [of the intolerable anguish and the time of unprecedented trouble]. 9 “Then they will hand you over to [endure] tribulation, and will put you to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of My name. 10 At that time many will be offended and repelled [by their association with Me] and will fall away [from the One whom they should trust] and will betray one another [handing over believers to their persecutors] and will hate one another. 11 Many false prophets will appear and mislead many. 12 Because lawlessness is increased, the love of most people will grow cold. 13 But the one who endures and bears up [under suffering] to the end will be saved. 14 This good news of the kingdom [the gospel] will be preached throughout the whole world as a testimony to all the nations, and then the end [of the age] will come.