Christians are kept from the great Tribulation; they do not have to endure it, or need to survive through that awful period of time.
I perceive that many Christians think that the end time events spoken of in the book of The Revelation portends days of terrible calamity for them. This has been perpetuated by the myths of Mid-Tribulational and Post-Tribulational Rapture theories. Sadly, the ole devil is robbing many Christians of the Blessed Hope status that is accorded to a particular generation which is alive when Jesus does return.
I Thessalonians 4:17 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.
Not only shall the last generation of Christians be evacuated from the day of Wrath, but we shall escape death as well. I am yearning to be among those who shall not sleep, (die) but remains alive unto the day when the King comes in the clouds.
I Thessalonians 1:10 and 5:9, as well as Revelation 3:10 expose the fact that Christians are Kept From the day of Wrath. ( For more on the Rapture: see volume 16 )
The Devil would have Christians to think that we are among the crowd wailing and bemoaning the day of the Kings coming. Revelation 1:7 portrays a crowd of people on the earth wailing because of the coming of the King; but rather we shall be coming with him amid the crowd personified in Jude 1:14!
I really like this one! Satan is going to get exactly what he deserves, a good old fashioned butt-whipping! Satan will be dethroned, bound up in chains, kicked out of this world, and locked up in a bottomless pit, kept away from the nations, and earmarked for a fate in the Lake of Fire forever!
Revelation 20:1-3 says that an angel will bind chains on the old devil, and whilst he has him bound down, my aspiration is to go ask the Lord if he would just hold him down a little longer so I can get in a few licks on him myself. "I hate the Devil. I am yearning to see him beaten to a pulp"! He has been the cause of all heartache and persecution. I Peter 5:8 identifies Satan as our adversary, behind every conspiracy built for our destruction. Yet, Isaiah 14:6 indicates that in the days when God chooses Israel again, that Lucifer shall be persecuted in his jail in the bottomless pit and shall have no one to hinder his punishment. In Isaiah 14:16 the mocking question is asked concerning the Devil; "Is this the man that made the earth to tremble and didst shake the nations?"
He won't look so tough then! Hallelujah! And I am yearning to see this vengeance taken on him by our great and glorious King!
The greatest urgency for repentance of all history shall humble many to the point of accepting JESUS! Persecution has the tendency to bend people's knees. The human heart and mind naturally tend to deviate toward self exaltation and pride, but when things get tough, people search out their need of a Saviour!
The Great Tribulational era will catapult the world into a time immense trouble and catastrophe, a time of intense spiritual warfare unlike anything heretofore. The greatest revivalist eras of church history usually have been the eras of greatest persecution. While the church shall not be present on the earth during this era, the working of the omnipresent Holy Spirit shall confront mankind with the face to face consequences of God's apportioned judgement.
God, in his providential wisdom knows how to win the maximum number of sinners into his great family, and he will mete out the Tribulational judgements in a piecemeal fashion; with the intent of compelling as many people as would ever choose him, to make that urgent decision, before it is forever too late!
I suppose many people do not yearn for the King to come, because they are worried that many of their lost loved ones would be doomed. But, actually, the coming of Jesus may be just the impetus for many to finally get downright serious and seek salvation, rather than continue in today’s "all is well" attitude of scorn, and indifference.
Revelation 7:14 portrays a vast crowd of people that shall find a white robe of salvation, only after having endured the Great Tribulation. Revelation 20:4 shows that they will have been confronted with dire choices which caused them to sincerely seek God!
In today’s laid back society, revival seems a distant potentiallity, but when the King comes, there shall be a revivalistic sense of urgency for many!
So, with all of these fortuitous blessings associated with the coming of the King, why isn't the Church, ( the bridegroom of the King ) yearning to see him come sooner, rather than later, even immediately?
Yearning; means to be filled with a strong, deep desire for something. The Church of today doesn't have this attitude towards its groom, does it? Israel is yearning for a Messiah, but even they anticipate and yearn for the wrong King!
We pray the Lord's Prayer and quote the phrase, "thy Kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in Heaven", but we shudder with chills at the mere mention of the second coming of the King!
C.S. Lewis once said: "Most of us Christians find it very difficult to desire Heaven, or the coming of the Lord, except for the quaint notion of rejoining our loved ones that have preceded our own arrival there". And he is right, it seems that nobody wants to go to Heaven right now, or for Jesus to come right now! We often seem quite satisfied right here in this world, having assimilated ourselves to living comfortably in this world, and wanting to enjoy all the things that this world deems important. Alas, I must point out that this world is not our Home!
I often wonder down deep within my own quiet soul, "could it be that Jesus is yearning for the day when we shall likewise begin yearning to see him as much as he is yearning to see us"?
In stark contrast to the attitude prevalent within the early church, today’s church seems to abhor the idea that the Bridegroom could suddenly appear on the scene, interrupting her activities in this world.
Surely, the Bridegroom must grieve over his bride being so reluctant to join him at his great Heavenly Marriage Supper! Isn't it about time that the Bride of Christ became excited and enthusiastic about the prospect of seeing and being with her Bridegroom? Today’s church has far more reason to be enthralled with a deep spirit of yearning for the king than has any other church era, because it has witnessed the sudden and miraculous re-budding of the fig tree!
Oh, that a great yearning cry for the King could be raised up within the walls of our churches and resound all the way up to Heaven proclaiming with a loud echo: "WE LOVE YOU JESUS, COME ON!"
Revelation 22:17 depicts the Spirit as welcoming the coming of the King, but I sense a deafening silence from the Bride today when I lend a listening ear to hearing a voice of welcome from the church!
Why is the Church quiet about welcoming the King?
In Luke 14:16-17 we have the parable of the great supper. The day of the feast arrives, and a servant is sent out at supper time to announce the readiness of the great meal. The invitees have earlier responded to an R.S.V.P. invitation, so their attendance is accredited.
These people have all planned to attend the great feast, but when the call comes forth for all to gather at supper time, they begin making excuses as to why they don't want to leave just now. They are too busy with other things.
Rather than being Christ rejectors, these individuals who should be anticipating the great supper, represent professing Christians, who have outwardly shown that they have accepted Christ as their Saviour; but when the time comes to attend the great supper; they find that they have no real interest in actually leaving this world and all the things they have in this world.
This is the reason that the Biblical Rapture doesn't have an appeal for many in today’s churches! It seems obvious to me that far too many church goers prefer this world over Heaven.
Colossians 3:2 Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth:
The Blessed Hope for them becomes a Cursed day! The hope of the Lord's return is a passion! The love of ones life is the hope of tomorrow. The continuous yearning for Jesus is not a form of escapism, but one of the things that a Christian just can't help doing.
Certainly nothing can affix our sights on heaven any more than the conviction that the King could come at any moment. Christians have legitimate reason for euphoria in these days, because God's measuring stick of time is his chosen nation Israel; and his clock says that it is almost supper time.
Are you yearning to go, or do you have an excuse prepared to exonerate your absence? Perhaps the best reason to be yearning for the King is simply because we love him so much.
Very soon the servant of God shall be sent out to announce that it is time for the great Marriage feast. The trumpet will sound, the King shall await us, and all that have accepted his invitation shall go. I can't wait to go!
Alas I hear a still small voice ringing resolutely in a fainter and fainter tone, but yet it sends an urgent beckoning calling voice; pleading out to the church: