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).
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).