[NOTE: It is important to read Scripture verses carefully and in context, paying close attention to
words that indicate timing such as "WHEN". "THEN", "AFTER", "BEFORE", etc.]. I have
capitalized these words in Scripture references to point them out.]
So far we have seen from the Bible that the Apostles were not expecting the Lord to return at any
moment and did not believe that the Rapture was imminent because they knew that Jesus had told
them of things that would have to happen BEFORE His return. For example, Peter's death (John
21:18-19); The destruction of the temple (Luke.21:6; Mt. 24:2; Mk. 13:2); and Preaching the Gospel
in all the world (Mt.28:19-20).
And we know that, according to Scripture, there are at least seven things that must occur, BEFORE
The Day of the Lord (God's wrath) comes upon the world. As we have already seen:
(1) Elijah the prophet must come and restore all things (Malachi 4:5,6; Matthew 17:11; Mark 9:12)
(2) Believers awareness of the nearness of the Lord's Coming to Rapture the saints (Matthew 24:32, 33; I Thess. 5:4,5).
(3) The "falling away" (Daniel 11:30; II Thessalonians 2:3)
(4) The "man of sin" must be revealed (recognized for who he is) (Matthew 24:15; Daniel 9:27)
These two significant events (The apostasy & the man of sin -Antichrist- revealed) will take place
before the Day of the Lord (God's Wrath) begins (II Thess. 2:3) (I Thessalonians 5:9).
(5) The fifth thing that must occur before God's wrath (The Day of the Lord) begins is the heavenly
wonders that Jesus spoke of in Matthew 24:29-31. They are also mentioned in Isaiah 13:9,10; Joel
2:10,11; Joel 2:30,31; Joel 3:14,15; Acts 2:19,20;Revelation 6:12,13.
(6) The sealing of the 144 Thousand (Revelation 7:1-8)
(7) The seventh and final event we will discuss in this series is "The Last Trump". This most significant event
will occur just before we are raptured! "Behold, I show you a mystery; We shall not all sleep (die),
but we shall all be changed, In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at "The Last Trump": for the
trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed." (I Corinthians 15:51,52)
Here, Paul pinpoints the very event that will initiate the Rapture of the saints!
This lines up exactly with I Thessalonians 4:16,17 "For the Lord Himself shall descend from heaven
with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall
rise first: 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."
This, the classic Rapture passage, agrees perfectly with Paul's letter to the Corinthians. Written long before the book of the Revelation was penned by the Apostle John, this can not refer to the seventh trumpet judgment of Revelation 11:15 as many claim. This trumpet, also called the trump of God, is referred to in direct connection with the Day ofthe Lord in Zephaniah 1:14-18 and Joel 2:1. Zechariah 9:14-16 showing God blowing Histrumpet, the trump of God, as He "shall save them in that day as the flock of His people" referring toHis saving/delivering by Rapture! The Lord Jesus also mentions this "The Last Trump" when he speaks of His "Coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory, And He shall send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together His elect from the four winds,from one end of heaven to the other." (Matthew 24:30, 31)
This chapter, Matthew 24, the Cornerstone of New Testament Prophecy, underlines this all important event, "The Last Trump", as it will initiate the Rapture and the subsequent wrath of God upon the unbelieving world called the Day of the Lord! We have learned from the Scripture, during our last six newsletters that there must and will be at least seven events occurring on God's prophetic timetable before the Rapture of the saints and God's wrath which is the Day of the Lord. When will we be raptured? Not before all of these prophesied events that recorded above occur.
Will we know the day and the hour? No, but we will be aware of the approximate season by watching for these intervening events that must occur before the Lord will come to rapture His church. It is our responsibility to keep our lives pure, witnessing for the Lord Jesus, and looking for the unfolding of these events as we wait for His return.
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