Archive | November 2013

Proof that Yeshua is the Jewish Messiah

The following is a brief but detailed study to show that Yeshua, Jesus the Christ, came out of Israel and is the Divine Jewish Messiah to the world. May it be a blessing to those of the house of Israel and of Judah. (Amen.)

“And after the sixty-two weeks Messiah shall be cut off, but not for Himself” (Daniel 9:26a).

In the verse above, the phrase “cut off” is translated from a form of the Hebrew verb: “Karath”.

Specifically, in Daniel 9:26, the transliterated form is: “kā·raṯ”.

Karath: “to cut; by implication to destroy or consume; specifically to make a covenant (i.e. make and alliance or bargain, originally by cutting flesh and passing between the pieces).

In Genesis chapter 15 we read that God made a blood covenant with Abraham:

“And it came to pass, that, when the sun went down, and it was dark, behold a smoking furnace, and a burning lamp that passed between those pieces. In the same day the LORD made a covenant with Abram, saying, ‘Unto thy seed have I given this land, from the river of Egypt unto the great river, the river Euphrates’” (Genesis 15:17-18).

The Hebrew word translated as “made” in Genesis 15:18 is a form of the same Hebrew word translated as “cut off” in Daniel 9:26: “yik·kā·rêṯ”. In the Hebrew it reads, “Cut Jehovah with Abram a covenant”.

The Bible first explains the blood covenant in Genesis chapter 15. Later, in Exodus, we read:

“Moses took the blood and sprinkled it on the people, and said, ‘Behold the blood of the covenant, which the Lord hath made with you concerning all these words’” (Exodus 24:8).

Israel failed to keep this covenant of works, so in Jeremiah 31, God promised the institution of a new covenant of grace:

“Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah” (Jeremiah 31:31).

In case you are wondering, the Hebrew verb translated into English as “make” is a form of the same Hebrew verb translated as “made” in Genesis 15:18 and as, “cut off” in Daniel 9:26.

Specifically, in Jeremiah 31:31, the transliterated form is: “wə·ḵā·rat·tî”.

It’s also interesting to note that the Greek word transliterated as “diatheke“, and translated into English as “covenant” in the New Testament, also means “testament”.

Jesus said, “this is My blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the forgiveness of sins” (Matthew 26:28).

In light of the fact that the Greek word “diatheke“ can mean testament or covenant, then the verse above could also be translated as, “this is My blood of the new covenant“.

“For this reason Christ is the mediator of a new covenant, that those who are called may receive the promised eternal inheritance—now that He has died as a ransom to set them free from the sins committed under the first covenant” (Hebrews 9:15).

This verse explains that Christ’s death was necessary to establish the new covenant of grace, or the New Testament. A new sacrifice had to be made to replace the sacrifice of the covenant God made with Abraham. Jesus had to be the new sacrifice and be “cut” off like the sacrifice that God required of Abraham in Genesis 15.

Now let’s read what Daniel says:

“Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem unto the Messiah the Prince shall be seven weeks, and threescore and two weeks: the street shall be built again, and the wall, even in troublous times. And after threescore and two weeks shall Messiah be cut off, but not for himself: and the people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary; and the end thereof shall be with a flood, and unto the end of the war desolations are determined” (Daniel 9:25-26).

So here we have Daniel, in light of the knowledge of Genesis 15:18 in the Torah, prophesying over 550 years in advance, that the Jewish Messiah would be executed according to the manner of the establishing of a blood covenant.

Daniel prophesied that the Messiah would not immediately set up His kingdom rule. The Messiah would be killed, sacrificed.

In light of this, the Pharisees had absolutely no excuse to deny that Jesus Christ was their promised Messiah, especially after the crucifixion. According to their own testimony, the Pharisees were very knowledgeable of the scriptures. The prophecies in the book of Daniel would have been very familiar to them. It would stand to reason then, that they could have very easily calculated that the period of time to elapse from “the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem unto Messiah the Prince” would be *483 years.

Although the Pharisees knew full well that Jesus was the Messiah, the powers of darkness did not want Yeshua to set up His kingdom, and be their Judge, so they killed His flesh. However, they could not kill Him.

I’m sure the entire meaning of the Hebrew word “karath” would have been familiar to the scribes and Pharisees, as well as the fact that the very same verb is found in Genesis 15:18 in the Torah.

Those who are still waiting for the Messiah’s first coming can trust and believe the words of Daniel. Yeshua is the Messiah who came out of Israel to the world:

“They shall smite the judge of Israel with a rod upon the cheek. But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting” (Micah 5:1b-2).

Yeshua came the first time in humility and only His true sheep recognized Him as their Messiah:

“Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your King is coming to you; He is just and having salvation, lowly and riding on a donkey, a colt, the foal of a donkey” (Zechariah 9:9).

The blood of Yeshua is the fulfillment of the Atonement:

“Then he shall kill the goat of the sin offering, which is for the people, bring its blood inside the veil, do with that blood as he did with the blood of the bull, and sprinkle it on the mercy seat and before the mercy seat. So he shall make atonement for the Holy Place, because of the
uncleanness of the children of Israel, and because of their transgressions, for all their sins; and so he shall do for the tabernacle of meeting which remains among them in the midst of their uncleanness” (Leviticus 16:15-16).

“But when Christ came as high priest of the good things that are now already here, He went through the greater and more perfect tabernacle that is not made with human hands, that is to say, is not a part of this creation. He did not enter by means of the blood of goats and calves; but He entered the Most Holy Place once for all by His own blood, thus obtaining eternal redemption.

How much more, then, will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself unblemished to God, cleanse our consciences from acts that lead to death, so that we may serve the living God! For this reason Christ is the mediator of a new covenant, that those who are called may receive the promised eternal inheritance—now that He has died as a ransom to set them free from the sins committed under the first covenant” (Hebrews 9:11-12, 14-15).

“But He was pierced for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on Him, and by His wounds we are healed” (Isaiah 53:5).

When Yeshua comes again He will be recognized by all nations as the true Jewish Messiah in great power and glory:

“And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon Me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for Him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for Him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn” (Zechariah 12:10).

“Behold, He cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see Him, and they also which pierced Him:

and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of Him. Even so, Amen” (Revelation 1:7).

“Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory” (Matthew 24:30).

Yeshua is the Son of God and He will rule the earth as the King of Israel. The inauguration of His kingdom on earth to rule the nations was delayed because His people rejected Him as their Messiah. He will soon return at the closing of the Jacob’s Trouble during the Day of the Lord to rule all nations:

“The One enthroned in heaven laughs; the Lord scoffs at them. He rebukes them in His anger and terrifies them in His wrath, saying, ‘I have installed my king on Zion, my holy mountain.’

I will proclaim the Lord’s decree: He said to me, ‘You are My Son; today I have become your Father. Ask Me, and I will make the nations Your inheritance, the ends of the earth Your possession. You will break them with a rod of iron; You will dash them to pieces like pottery.’

Kiss His Son, or He will be angry and your way will lead to your destruction, for His wrath can flare up in a moment. Blessed are all who take refuge in Him” (Psalms 2:4-9, 12).

Shalom b’Yeshua haMashiach. (Peace in Yeshua the Messiah.)

getraptureready@gmail.com

*Note: The key to understanding the 483 years relates to the fact that Daniel said, “to build Jerusalem”, not just the temple, as was the case with other decrees.

The decrees of Cyrus in 539 B.C., (Ezra 1:1-14), of Darius I in 518 B.C., (Ezra 6), and of Artaxerxes I to Ezra in 457 B.C., (Ezra 7:11-26) did not concern the rebuilding of Jerusalem.

Only the decree of Artaxerxes to Nehemiah in 445 B.C. (Nehemiah 2:1-8) refers to the rebuilding of Jerusalem.

Over a century ago, Sir Robert Anderson gave detailed calculations of the 69 weeks prophecy in his book, “The Coming Prince”, first published in 1894. He worked out the calculation by allowing for errors in the calendar, leap years, and the change from B.C. to A.D. He estimated that the 69 weeks ended on the same day as the triumphal entry of Christ into Jerusalem, five days before His crucifixion.

http://www.raptureready.com/resource/anderson/chapter8.html

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Why Does God Allow People to Suffer?

This is possibly the most asked question of all time. Although there have been many correct and effective answers provided by godly believers, the following offers yet another attempt to present a response from a different angle.

Whose hand is it?

When tragedy strikes, unbelievers usually point their fingers and scoff, “How can you worship a God who would do something like this? How can a ‘good’ God allow ‘innocent’ people to suffer?” Then we believers are faced with answering a loaded and seemingly unanswerable question.

The majority of my experience has been that when people lament a tragedy, they usually envision the actual hand of God as the instrument used for the destruction. To find clues that will help solve the mystery of whose hand is really the instrument of harm, we will turn to the story of a man famous for pain and suffering: Job.

Satan brought the winds of destruction to Job’s family:

“And the Lord said to Satan, ‘Behold, all that he has is in your power; only do not lay a hand on his person.’ So Satan went out from the presence of the Lord…’and suddenly a great wind came from across the wilderness and struck the four corners of the house, and it fell on the young people, and they are dead’” (Job 1:12, 19a).

Satan inflicted Job with disease on his body:

“And the Lord said unto Satan, Behold, he is in thine hand; but save his life. So went Satan forth from the presence of the LORD, and smote Job with sore boils from the sole of his foot unto his crown” (Job 2:6-7).

God may allow Satan to cause earthly suffering but He will never allow Satan to cause eternal suffering. Although Satan can cause temporary affliction for believers, he has no authority over our spiritual eternity. God’s sovereign hand of restraint limits the total amount of harm that Satan wishes to inflict upon mankind. God will soon punish Satan with everlasting destruction.

The Adversary

The name Satan means “adversary”. Satan opposes, contends with, and resists God and His true children at all costs. He is our accuser and our enemy. (People who openly identify with Satan actually hate God more than they like Satan. Some may make a proud profession of their service to Satan with occult symbols tattooed on their bodies and the like, but someday they will realize that their anger should have been directed toward Satan.)

According to the Book of Job, all of the forces of nature are under the complete authority of Almighty God:

“By the breath of God frost is given: and the breadth of the waters is straitened. Also by watering He wearieth the thick cloud: He scattereth his bright cloud: And it is turned round about by his counsels: that they may do whatsoever He commandeth them upon the face of the world in the earth. He causeth it to come, whether for correction, or for His land, or for mercy. Hearken unto this, O Job: stand still, and consider the wondrous works of God” (Job 37:10-14).

However, we can only imagine that Satan has desired to destroy God’s creation as we know it, since it was first created. Although all the forces of nature are under the complete authority of God, also according to the Book of Job, Satan has the power to manipulate weather patterns for destruction. I believe Satan is always at the ready to wreak havoc upon the coastlines and plains, upon the mountains and valleys of the world, when granted the authority to do so by the Lord.

Satan desires destruction, but God desires deliverance. Satan enslaves, but God frees. It was the mercy of God that rebuked the storm raging on the sea:

“And they came to him, and awoke him, saying, Master, master, we perish. Then he arose, and rebuked the wind and the raging of the water: and they ceased, and there was a calm” (Luke 8:24).

Free will of mankind

However, the most dangerous and effective tool of all lies within Satan’s control: Mankind. All human beings, regardless of race or gender, are open to the control of Satan unless possessed by the Spirit of God. Nothing causes more harm to human beings than other human beings.

God allows human beings to make their own choices. People suffer at the hands of others who choose hate and violence instead of love and mercy.

As another RR writer recently and wisely answered in his own article, which was written before this article, that it was mankind’s choice to know good and evil, not God’s. The choice of death was made back in the Garden of Eden. (http://www.raptureready.com/soap/twobears111.html)

“And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, ‘Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat; but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die’” (Genesis 2:16-17).

Logical reasoning

Those that hate God will continue to do so regardless of the quality of logic and reason for the merit of truth that is presented to them, so that they can continue to blame God for the evil of Satan and mankind.

“But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are Spiritually discerned” (1 Corinthians 2:14).

The verse above carries a mountain of weight according to the mighty impact of its truth. For believers, it’s as easy as a child’s understanding of the love of a mother’s smile. For unbelievers, it’s as impossible as a 90 year-old man growing wings and flying to the moon.

The unsaved will never come to the knowledge of the truth of God’s grace unless they first come to repentance.

“In humility correcting those who are in opposition, if God perhaps will grant them repentance, so that they may know the truth” (2 Timothy 2:25).

God will defeat Satan

“And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of His Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night” (Revelation 12:10).

“And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever” (Revelation 20:10).

Stay heavenly minded

When tragedy strikes on earth, you can ease your pain and sorrow by placing your hope in heaven. Heavenly hope understands and accepts that whatever is happening, whatever the circumstance, it is not God’s final plan. While you are here on earth, God will help you through the sickness, the storm, or the struggle.

“For He hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee. So that we may boldly say, ‘The Lord is my helper, and I will not fear’” (Hebrews 13:5b-6a).

God’s plans for us are heavenly and eternal. Although we cannot possibly conceive of all the joy His future plans hold for us, we can start with the assurance that “there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away” (Revelation 21:4b).

Job prosperity was restored

The Lord lovingly restored Job to double the prosperity he had before.

“And the Lord returned the captivity of Job, when he prayed for his friends: also the Lord gave Job twice as much as he had before” (Job 42:10).

We too, as children of God, will inherit future glory.

“The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with Him, that we may be also glorified together. For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us” (Romans 8:16-18).

Abortion Pro-Choice or Pro-Life

This article contains some interesting medical facts and philosophical pondering. I hope they can be of some use to you as you make your own decision of whether you are pro-choice or pro-life.

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*In 1996, investigators at Harvard and Tufts universities, and at the New England Medical Center in Boston, detected fetal cells in mothers’ bodies decades after pregnancy. Furthermore, the fetal cells could infiltrate maternal tissues and differentiate into liver, blood, skin, and other cell types. Originally, it was thought that such fetal cells in the mothers caused many of the autoimmune diseases that afflict women.

But in 2002, Tufts investigators demonstrated that the fetal cells may play a critical role in repairing a mother’s damaged tissue. In one case, a woman suffering from hepatitis, a serious liver disease, stopped her treatment against medical advice. Surprisingly, she recovered. Her own body could not regenerate healthy liver cells, so the investigators were baffled. When they tested a specimen of her liver, though, they discovered it incorporated thousands of male cells still left in her circulation from a pregnancy nearly two decades before her illness. Those leftover fetal cells had generated new liver cells, and thereby saved the mother’s life.

*Pregnancy Reconceived: what keeps a mother’s immune system from treating her baby as foreign tissue? A new theory resolves the paradox.
Article from: Natural History | May 1, 2007 | Mor, Gil | Copyright American Museum of Natural History Dec 2008/Jan 2009

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As we all learn in basic biology, a female is actually born with all of the eggs she will ever need to reproduce. The number will not increase. She is born with a specific number.

The following is an excerpt from Women lose 90 percent of ‘eggs’ by 30, published in the Health News section of The Telegraph By Richard Alleyne, Science Correspondent.

The new research by the University of St Andrews and Edinburgh University is the first to collate the actual decline of the “ovarian reserve” – the potential number of eggs women are born with – from conception to menopause.
It shows that on average women are born with 300,000 potential egg cells but this pool declines at a much faster rate than first thought.

By the age of 30 there is only 12 percent left on average and by the age of 40 just three percent.

When a women dies, all of her dies, including all of the eggs that could have developed into a baby. Even while she is still alive, nearly 90% of her eggs have died by age 30. However, one living egg from the ovarian reserve can be joined at fertilization (or conception) and a zygote (or baby) is formed. A process of life and death begins. No matter how young a fertilized life-form is, it will only get older until it dies. Even if it was conceived last week, it has already begun the dying process.

Our bodies start to wear down from the moment of fertilization. We usually just call it “growing” when the person is a child and “getting old” when the person is over 30. Whatever, it is all part of growing older. Just look at young athletes. Look at the game of tennis for instance. It is stunning to see just how fast a professional tennis player’s body wears down. A tennis player is considered “past their prime” physically if they’re only in their mid-twenties.

Something cannot begin dying unless it was first living.

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abortion-protest

Baby-10-Weeks-out-of-womb (10 weeks)

Satan’s Presence

Just an old note of mine that I found about satanic oppression of believers.

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Books on Bible Prophecy are disappearing fast!

Please take note of the following picture:

LifeWayStore

That is a picture of the Bible Prophecy section in my local LifeWay Christian bookstore. There are several things noticeably absent:

1. The previous section heading of “Bible Prophecy” has been replaced. It now reads, “Current Issues”.

2. Content: Notice the empty spots on the shelves. It appears that when books are purchased, they are not being replaced.

3. Meat: While there are several EXCELLENT resources that actually provide meat for the prophecy student to sink their teeth into, the milk far outweighs the meat.

The section that deals with Bible Prophecy used to indeed be called “Bible Prophecy” and it used to be unashamedly displayed near the front of the store and actually facing the entrance.

This pitifully small section is now located in the back of the store and it faces the back wall. It also used to be called something else: “FUTURE Events”.

A key area that allows new believer’s faith to grow, is the knowledge that the Bible long ago accurately predicted future events, that are beginning to unfold today. Most of these events still lie in the FUTURE although they have already begun to take place.

Notice that the key-word “FUTURE” has been cleverly replaced with the word “Current”.

The Southern Baptist Convention is the parent of LifeWay Christian Resources. The Southern Baptist Convention identifies itself as being evangelical Christian, Premillenial, Pre-trib, and Dispensational.

Wow, if this is all we get from those who identify themselves with us, what are we to expect from those who don’t? (Not much.)

As we continue to fight the good fight, our “resources” are “disappearing” fast.

Concerning our Gathering Together to Him

Trouble at Thessalonica

The church at Thessalonica was troubled. They believed they were beginning to endure the time of God’s wrath. The apostle Paul, in his second letter to the Thessalonians, assured them that the Day of the Lord had not yet begun.

“Now, brethren, concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our gathering together to Him, we ask you, not to be soon shaken in mind or troubled, either by spirit or by word or by letter, as if from us, as though the day of Christ had come” (2 Thessalonians 2:1-2).

Persecution

During the time that Paul wrote his second letter to the church, their fellowship was experiencing persecution:

“So that we ourselves boast of you among the churches of God for your patience and faith in all your persecutions and tribulations that you endure” (2 Thessalonians 1:4).

Doctrine of the rapture

The recipients of Paul’s letter were supposed to be following the doctrine already taught to them by Paul when he started their fellowship. Paul reinforced the doctrine concerning the rapture and the second coming of Christ in his first letter to the Thessalonians.

“Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord. Therefore comfort one another with these words” (1 Thessalonians 4:17-18).

The church was to take comfort in the fact that they would not have to endure God’s wrath.

“For God did not appoint us to wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Thessalonians 5:9).

They already knew that Jesus had said that in Him they would not have tribulation. They knew that in the world they would have tribulation but that in Him they would have peace.

“These things I have spoken unto you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” – John 16:33

False teachings

The church at Thessalonica was being misled by false teachers concerning the second coming of Christ. As the persecutions and tribulations continued to mount, the Thessalonians started to believe that the Day of the Lord had begun. They had become shaken in mind and troubled that

they had missed the gathering together in the air with their saved loved ones, who had fallen asleep in Jesus.

Since they knew the Day of the Lord would come as a thief in the night to the unsaved, they could have been easily tricked into believing it had caught them by surprise.

It is also understandable that they would be very troubled if they thought they would have to endure God’s wrath during the Day of the Lord.

“The great day of the Lord is near; It is near and hastens quickly. That day is a day of wrath, A day of trouble and distress” (Zephaniah 1:14a, 15a).

However, Paul had previously taught them to be comforted, not troubled.

They expected the rapture first

The Thessalonians would not be so troubled and shaken in mind if they had expected all along that they would to have to endure the tribulation. If they were looking for Antichrist instead of Jesus Christ, they would have expected to have to endure the Day of the Lord before seeing Jesus.

However, the Thessalonians knew from Paul’s previous letter that the gathering in the “air” with Christ would take place before the Day of the Lord. The possibility that they had missed the rapture caused widespread panic and alarm. They were deeply troubled that they had been left behind.

They had already been taught that the revealing of the “man of sin” would precede the beginning of the Day of the Lord.

“Let no one deceive you by any means; for that Day will not come unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition, Do you not remember that when I was still with you I told you these things” (2 Thessalonians 2:3,5)?

*Instead of being so troubled that the Day of the Lord had already begun, they would have been pushing to hasten the destruction of the Antichrist, and the commencement of Christ’s millennial kingdom.*

“And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord will consume with the breath of His mouth and destroy with the brightness of His coming” (2 Thessalonians 2:8).

Times and seasons

There are no signs specific to the rapture of the church. It will be a secret and sudden event, although there are signs and seasons related to the Day of the Lord.

Paul told the Thessalonians in his first letter that he did not need to write to them concerning the times and the seasons: “But concerning the times and the seasons, brethren, you have no need that I should write to you” (1 Thessalonians 5:1).

They should have known that they were not entering the time of God’s wrath. As Paul said, it should have gone without saying.

Since the rapture precedes the Day of Christ, Paul chose to use the signs that would accompany the embodiment of the evil one to demonstrate that the Day of the Lord had not yet begun.

*Later in 2 Thessalonians, Paul gave believers further assurance that the Lord would keep the evil one from harming them.*

“But the Lord is faithful, who will establish you and guard you from the evil one” (2 Thessalonians 3:3).

More than one option

If it was already taught that the church would have to endure God’s wrath at the beginning of the Day of the Lord, then that would be the only option. That would be the only circumstance. As already stated, the church would have been prepared in advance to enter the time of God’s wrath at a moment’s notice.

It is then logical to conclude that Paul would not have spent so much time trying to assure the Thessalonians in his second letter that the Day of the Lord had not yet begun. Instead, he would have spent more time assuring them to take comfort that no matter what circumstances or trials they may have to endure, even the Day of God’s wrath, they would soon meet the Lord in the air. For this is the only teaching that would be consistent with the abundance of other exhortations for believers to persevere in trials and tribulation.

Two-phased coming of Christ

*The fact that the Thessalonians thought is was even possible to still be here on earth after the Day of the Lord had already begun, after Christ had already gathered those who had fallen asleep in Him, proves they believed in a two-phased coming of Christ.*

Paul had to remind them that first would come the departure when “He who now restrains will do so until He is taken out of the way” (2 Thessalonians 2:8). It is not until after the departure that the Antichrist will “be revealed in his own time” (2 Thessalonians 2:6).

However, you are saved

Part of the comfort, through which believers are exhorted, is to wear as a helmet the hope of our salvation. Paul closes both segments in both letters to the Thessalonians dealing with the Day of the Lord, with same encouragement in reference to their salvation.

If you will allow a simple comparison via paraphrase:

“sudden destruction comes upon them… however, you are saved…” (1 Thessalonians 5:3 and 8)

“that they all may be condemned… however, you are saved…” (2 Thessalonians 2:12, 13)

We are to have hope in our salvation as the means to prove that we are not appointed to wrath, because obviously only those who are saved in the first place will avoid the wrath of the Day of the Lord.

In contrast, the unsaved will be present on earth during the Day of the Lord “because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved” (2 Thessalonians 2:10b).

They have no hope of salvation upon which to rest.

Closing thoughts and Scriptures

*If the Day of the Lord was to precede the rapture and was imminent, how could Paul know while he was writing his second letter to the Thessalonians, that the Day would not begin before his letter reached them?* One can only imagine that it took several days, if not weeks, for a letter to travel over 300 miles from Corinth to Thessalonica in the first century.

Paul clearly taught that the church, the Ekklesia, will meet the Lord in the air before His wrath is poured out on this earth. We are not to be troubled as though we will have to endure the beginning of the Day of the Lord.

“Therefore, brethren, stand fast and hold the traditions which you were taught, whether by word or our epistle. Do not quench the Spirit. Do not despise prophecies. Therefore comfort one another with these words” (2 Thessalonians 2:15; 1 Thessalonians 5:19-20; 4:18).

The Mystery of the Rapture: You are the Sons and Daughters of God

This message is speaking directly to true born-again believers of Jesus Christ the Lord.

Why all the “mystery” surrounding the rapture of the church? One answer: The Bride of Christ.

Let’s begin by building up the truth of mystery of the bride of Christ. To a sister in Christ I might ask: How can you know that you are the “daughter” of God? “Because I am saved”, you respond. That is of course correct. Now, taking that thought a step further, since you are saved you are now part of the “body” of Christ, the true church.

THE BODY OF CHRIST IS THE BRIDE OF CHRIST

How do we know that the true church is the bride of Christ? First, Christ Himself taught:

“For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh” (Mark 10:7-8).

Then Paul expounded upon the exact words spoken by Jesus:

“For we are members of His body, of His flesh and of His bones. ‘For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.’ This is a great mystery, but I speak concerning Christ and the church” (Ephesians 5:30-32).

We are the body of Christ because we are the bride of Christ. Yes, it really is that simple, yet so overwhelming!

YOU ARE THE SON OR DAUGHTER OF CHRIST

Now, let’s go back to the concept that since you are saved you are part of the bride of Christ. Taking one last step: What does John 3:16 say?

“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).

The Father gave His “Son”. What happens when a woman marries a man whose father is still alive? She becomes the daughter in law of the groom’s father. She is both the bride of the son and the daughter of his father. I’m sure you see the wonderful truth now!

We believers are servants of the Lord Jesus Christ. He is the King of kings, and the Lord of lords. When it says “kings” and “lords” it is of course referring to earthly kings and lords. We are servants of Jesus Christ while we are on this earth and He is our God. After we are judged as individual believers at His bema seat, He will declare us ready for our marriage to Him! (I’m quietly weeping tears of joy and gratitude as I’m writing this.)

“‘Let us be glad and rejoice and give Him glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His wife has made herself ready.’ And to her it was granted to be arrayed in fine linen, clean and bright, for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints” (Revelation 19:7-8).

Please understand how dear and sweet your Groom is. He is the most amazing, dedicated, loving Husband who has already lain down His life for you. He did all of this so that you could share in the love of His Father as His Father’s own daughter. (I’m still overwhelmed right now.)

Of course, my dear brothers, it works the same way for us. As members of the bride of Christ, we are also the sons of God!

THE MYSTERY OF THE RAPTURE OF THE CHURCH

Why all the “mystery” surrounding the rapture of the church?

The true church, Christ’s bride, is going to rule with Him over Israel and the nations during His millennial reign on earth. If a king has a bride, then it is usually he and his bride that rule from their thrones over a nation or kingdom. Although the bride is of course still subject to the king, he does not usually leave his bride outside of the castle and rule over her, the same way he rules over the subjects of his kingdom. He will give her a throne alongside of his, upon which she may share in his rule over their kingdom.

“Do you not know that the saints will judge the world? And if the world will be judged by you, are you unworthy to judge the smallest matters? 3 Do you not know that we shall judge angels? How much more, things that pertain to this life? And I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was committed to them… And they lived and reigned with Christ for a thousand years.” (1 Corinthians 6:2-3, Revelation 20:4).

The fact that the true church was to be the bride of Christ instead of Israel is the reason why the rapture of the bride remains a mystery to those without understanding.

This concept is misapplied by many Bible prophecy teachers. Some teach that the church has eternally replaced Israel in all of Bible prophecy, as highlighted in this recent article written by Terry James: (http://terryjamesprophecyline.com/2013/10/31/replacement-theologofolly/#comments)

“Behold, I tell 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 trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed” (1 Corinthians 15:51-52).

TAKE STRENGTH

So, fellow brothers and sisters in Christ, and fellow sons and daughters of the One and only True God, take strength! When you are being tossed about the tempest, remember, you are the child of God!

At any moment, the Father will issue the order for His Son, your Groom, to come and receive you unto Himself.

“I will come again and receive you unto Myself; that where I am, there you may be also” (John 14:3b).

EvenSoCome

His Remnant Church ~ Living in the Last Days ~ Understanding Prophecy