God's plan No 3 - His coming for the Church
It is almost 2000 years since Jesus accomplished His work on the cross to enable every person that comes to Him to receive eternal life. Already for almost 2000 years the Gospel has been preached to the world. God teaches us in the Bible that the existence of a person is not ended by death. The death of the human physical body is the fulfillment of God’s Word, when He said to Adam on account of his transgressions, “… for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.”
After death is the judgment (Hebrews 9,27)! There God will decide where the individual will end up going; there are only two places, see Luke 16,19-31. It will be the worse for the one who has not heeded to the Word of God. To prevent mankind from having to pay the penalty for his sins and going to hell the Gospel is preached, so that whoever believes and is obedient to the Word of God will not be lost but will attain eternal life.
Just like Jesus first coming was prophesied with His arrival being unexpected for many, so will His return for His church also be a surprise for many people. Behold, I shew you a mystery; we (the reborn Christians - John 3,5; Acts 2,38) shall not all sleep (die), but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye … and the dead shall be raised incorruptible (with a new body), and we (who are still alive) shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption and this mortal must put on immorality. I Corinthians 15,51-53. What a day! A day of fulfillment, a day of blessing, we shall see our Savior Jesus Christ. “Then shall two be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left.” (Matthew 24,40)
Graves will open up and be vacated while mortality puts on immortality. Thousands upon thousands who are living upon this earth will also be changed and taken away to fly towards the Lord in the clouds, see I Thessalonians 4,16-18. Will the world then wake up and realize that there is a God, that Jesus is the LORD and requires righteousness from everybody? The separation of the righteous and the unrighteous takes place through the rapture and the taking away of the people of God from this earth. Now God gives the remainder of the world a sign that His patience is over with. God will pour out His anger upon the world (Revelation 16). The antichrist will be revealed and will appear and rule the world with satanic power and terror. The only way to escape from all this is to do what Jesus says. The doctrine of the apostles is the doctrine of Jesus.Find a church now, which preaches the whole truth and make sure that you have salvation. For the harvest is ripe. rw
The Apostle Paul in writing to the church at Thessalonica told of the great hope that was ahead for the Bride of Christ, the church. This is commonly called 'The Rapture of the Church.' Several things he makes clear to the church concerning this monumental event in I Thessalonians 4:13-18.
• Concerning the dead, we are not to sorrow as one without hope (Verse
• Because Jesus rose again he will raise the dead in Christ also (Verse 14).
• The Lord himself will descend from heaven. There will be a heavenly shout with the voice of the archangel included, and the trumpet of God will sound (Verse 16).
• Those having died after living their lives for Jesus will be raised first (Verse 16).
• The living saints will be caught up together with the dead saints in the clouds (Verse 17).
• All will meet the Lord Jesus in the air, never to be parted again (Verse 17).
• We are to comfort one another with this truth (Verse 18). Jesus, in Matthew 24:40-42, spoke of this tremendous time, and warned of the danger of not being ready. There will be a separation between those who are ready for the rapture and those who are unprepared.
•"Then shall two be in the field, the one taken, and the other left" (Verse 40).
•"Two women shall be grinding at the mill, the one shall be taken, and the other left" (Verse 41).
•"Watch therefore, for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come" (Verse 42).
• There will be a resurrection of the righteous dead.
• Jesus Christ will return for His bride.
• There will be a glorious catching away of the saints of God.
• There will be a wonderful reunion with the saints of God that have gone on before. Paul in writing to Titus said it so well.
In sum, there will be a resurrection of the righteous dead. Jesus Christ
will return for His church. There will be a glorious catching away of the
saints of God, and there will be a wonderful reunion with the saints of God
who have gone on before. The following passage describes the proper response
to this great truth.
"For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour lesus Christ" (Titus 2:11-13).