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February 25, 2022 2:00 am
The word rapture is largely not found in Scripture, but the concept is. Learn about this future event involving Jesus' return as Skip shares the message "The Rapture—Is It Real?" from the series 20/20.
This teaching is from the series Pastor Skip's Top 40.Links:
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At the rapture, Jesus comes in the air and we meet him in the air, we will ever be with him.
First Thessalonians for the second coming. Jesus comes from heaven through the air. All the rapture comes to claim his bride. Jesus is going to return one coming for his people. Today we continue our countdown scripts top 40 messages on the connect with Skip Heitzig YouTube channel in the number one spot escapes message the rapture is real. Skip explores the moment when Jesus turns for his church. A major event in which you can be a part want to let you know about an amazing opportunity to visit the sites with the prophets and kings of the Bible from God, you're in for an incredible time as we travel throughout Israel and experience the culture that's so unique to that country.
Now I've been to Israel and the number of times over the years that I can honestly say that visiting the places where the events of the Scriptures unfolded were Jesus lived taught and healed just never gets old will start on the Mediterranean Sea and head north. Seeing places like Caesarea and Nazareth, the Sea of Galilee and the Jordan River will spend several days in and around Jerusalem and see the Temple Mount Calvary, the garden of Gethsemane and the amount of all and much more.
This remarkable itinerary is made richer with time to worship, Bible study and lots of fellowship. The Bible come alive to you in a way it never has before.
I hope you'll join Lenny and me on what is always an unforgettable trip.
I can't wait to see you in his this dream can come true for you. Start planning and saving now to tour Israel with Skip Heitzig information, inspiration, cruises.com/C ABQ that's inspiration cruises.com/C ABQ. Now we're in John chapter 14 is Skip Heitzigs. It gets into today's message that these disciples did understand all of this. They didn't understand the nuance of the rapture and the second coming of Jesus gave this message.
He's not giving them a lesson in eschatology in and that there is no condition to receive it that they don't quite understand it all. I and I get that. And he doesn't explain to them but they will understand it and here's how I know because I gonna write about it later on to get the full revelation later on, but let's just pause for a moment.
Consider the chronology. The timing because now we have the benefit of the entire New Testament and now we understand by looking at all of the passages that the coming of Christ and the future has two stages. Stage one he comes in the air to take his church with them to be where he is and that at some point he comes with his church to the earth to set up his kingdom. Second, now want to return to first Thessalonians chapter 4 the words of Paul the apostle, but I I I said pre-Mark first Thessalonians chapter 4 this is the classic passage on this event. First Thessalonians 4 verse 13, but I do not want you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning those who are fallen asleep. It seems every time. Also, I don't want you to be ignorant. It's a doctrine upon which the church is majorly ignorant. I don't want you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning those who are fallen asleep, lest you sorrow as others who have no hope.
Keep in mind they thought okay you told us.
Jesus is coming our loved ones and died there going to miss out on this event so Paul corrects it for if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so God will bring with him those who sleep in Jesus. For this we say to you by the word of the Lord is a special revelation I got from God that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord will by no means precede those who are asleep. Those with died for the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God and the dead in Christ will rise first. 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.
That is the rapture of the church. Some of your thinking. I didn't read the word rapture in that passage. The word rapture is in in the New Testament the word rapture is in the Bible.
Well it depends which version of the Bible your reading yet you're writing an English translation of Napa word rapture. If you were reading a Latin translation of the Bible the word rapture is plainly there in this passage were dropped tour of the Latin words from whence we in English get the word rapture.
So the idea of the rapture and the word in Latin is certainly there, but notice the word caught up. We will be caught up. That's the Greek word Hartog, so Hartog, so it is a word used third teen times in the New Testament Hartog so it's translated a variety of ways. Four times it is translated to catch up three times. It is translated to take something by force.
It is translated catch away twice. It is translated to pluck two times it is translated wants to catch and another.
Once it is translated to poll to get the general idea. You can take something away snatch it quickly. I have a translation I brought with me call the Kenneth Weese translation. This is a Greek scholar who wrote several volumes and this is his New Testament translation. What he does. He takes every single Greek word and sentence adds the riches in the nuance of the English translation, and in makes it as full as he can.
So you'd understand the tenses, etc. so this is how he translates this verse in first Thessalonians 4. We shall be snatched away forcibly in masses of saints having the appearance of clouds for a welcome meeting with the Lord in the lower atmosphere that's pretty plain is pretty detailed, even a casual study will show that there is a vast difference between the rapture of the church in the second coming of Christ.
We run down a few of those to the rapture is when Jesus comes for his church.
The second coming is when Jesus comes with his church at the rapture, Jesus comes in the air and we meet him in the air, we will ever be with him.
First Thessalonians 4, but at the second coming of Jesus comes from heaven through the air. That is, through the atmosphere, all the way to the earth again at the rapture. He comes to claim his bride, the second coming. He comes with his bride. Think of the Jewish wedding at the rapture, the focus is Jesus Christ and his church. At the second coming, the focus is Israel and the kingdom at the rapture of the church.
It is a sudden event. It is an unpredictable event.
It is a sign the last event is Jesus said or as Paul said in first Corinthians 15.
In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, we shall be changed. Most people, they will. The twinkling of an eye. That's the 30th of a second. That's that's when your I wing snow didn't say winking of an eye, the twinkling of an eye is different, twinkling of an eye is like traveling in 186,000 mi./s. Bouncing off your eyes. In other words, in a nano second snap will be with the Lord Jesus referred to in Matthew 24 therefore you also be ready for the Son of Man is coming at an hour when you do not expect him the second coming is different. Unlike the rapture the rapture is unpredictable. The second coming is predictable, it will happen. I believe seven years later, the second coming when there is a tribulation on the earth when there is darkness on the earth cataclysms on the earth half the world's population on earth will die. That's Revelation 6 to 19 at the rapture of the church. Only believers will see him, we who are alive and remain will be caught up at the second coming every by shall see him, we are told to consider that next week the second coming.
So that's a brief chronology of of this coming the third aspect on to look at is the controversy of this coming notice in verse four, Jesus says, and where I go you know and the way you know them as the Lord we don't we don't know where you're going and how can we know the way.
Understand that that the controversy here. The Jews at that time, believe that the Messiah was coming, but the Jews believe the Messiah was coming once or twice he's coming and when he comes.
He's gonna set up the kingdom and the apostles were Jewish apostles that were Jewish followers of Jesus, that is their belief system. I believe Jesus is the Christ Messiah believe that and so because he is the Messiah. He's gonna set up his kingdom is going to come and take over by the time of Jesus Jewish people had a clearly formed eschatology already in place to give you the rundown number one they expected before the coming of the Messiah. There will be a terrible time in the world terrible turmoil will happen.
They believe that it already happened because the Romans occupied the land took away their rights force them to do things they didn't want to do tax them heavily. They were under the oppression of the Roman yoke number two after that.
After the terrible time of turmoil in the midst of that turmoil. A forerunner is gonna come in the Elijah like personality who's going to make an announcement that is coming. That's why people work all excited about John the Baptist when he came down to the Jordan River numbers her three the Messiah would then appear. He would then establish his kingdom.
He would defeat all of his enemies, and number four scatter Jews from all over the world would slide into Israel.
Jerusalem would then be restored to a place of dominance and there would be world peace that was sort of a fourfold eschatology that Jews at that time believed the apostles were Jews.
They believe that and probably they believed they were between phases one and three to add fuel to that eschatological fire just a few days prior to this meal, Jesus rode into Jerusalem on donkey and the crowds proclaimed him Messiah. Blessed are you who come in the name of the Lord, son of David, there was an uproar. If you were for the first time everybody recognize he is the Messiah. So you gotta understand the disciples were salivating at that point. This is it.
It's show time so the next logical step.
They thought is he's going to establish his kingdom. Jesus after the donkey ride walks into the temple and looks around, and then leave and it's like wall wall. Are you to do anything today so he does it again the next day talks with few people says a few things in the leads. Then he invites them to this Passover meal at which time he says I am leaving you this is not what they expect. This is not what they anticipate.
This is why there is trouble in their hearts even when Jesus dies in gets raised from the dead and he is with his disciples in acts chapter 1 they come to him and say will you at this time restore the kingdom to Israel again announced that the kingdom of Jesus that you know it's really not for you know the times and the seasons that the father has in his own authority to lighten up. So you got you got to know that their entire theology is in a change from this night forward in the next few days, weeks, months, years, there gonna get it and oregano understand. Okay Jesus is coming back and when he comes back, he's coming back for his church and the knees coming back with the church to the world looking to see those two coming now all of that to say that Jesus coming was controversy all today. Jesus coming is still controversy. I think everybody agrees that Jesus is coming, but not everybody agrees. When Jesus is coming and it's funny how we argue about that. But we do. Unfortunately, assembly Jesus coming in a pre-tribulation rapture before the tribulation begins.
I happen to be in that camp strongly.
Others believe not strong. He's coming in the middle of the tribulation. Recall that amid tribulation rapture. Other say no is coming at the very end which is sort of the weirdest position because why would he take you up to, only to bring you back down again and hit each other on the way up. That's called post-tribulation rapture.
So there's all sorts of enters copy yet another position we can throw in a called a pre-wrath position that before he really unleashes wrath on the earth. God is in it didn't take us up with him. There's all sorts of different positions.
It's okay to believe in them. I believe in a pre-tribulation rapture. He believed in anything you want your ROM and I'm okay with you being wrong, I love you anyway because it's not a cardinal doctrine will not separate fellowship wrong on so many levels.
But that's okay. The fact that he is coming back in and we just need to say that those are okay. What's not okay is there are some people who believe that all of this is imaginative and spiritual, that Jesus and all these events.
The Bible talks about in the future really are going to happen. They already happened is called federalism PR ET ER ISM federalism, a predator rest is somebody who believes that all of the events written about in Revelation chapter 6 through 19 already happened in 70 A.D. when Titus destroyed Jerusalem saw figurative language Artie happened never to happen again and and there's an extreme view of predators in this is Jesus already came spiritually so they don't even make it physically and literally even though the angel said to the apostles the same Jesus, you saw go up will come back in like manner as you have seen them go.
But there are those who believe he is not even coming and all the events of Artie happened was pretty easy to prove wrong right because if all the events in Revelation 6 and 19 of Artie happened in there gotta be some record and history of half of the world's population being wiped out. I've not read that you I've not seen that in the first century in Jerusalem and Israel in any subsequent century there would be some oral thing passed down of all the cataclysms mentioned in Revelation have having happened and there is not, but his coming is controversial. On and on.
This is were disorder touching on all these things are not going to deep but we we have a time constraint that is number for the consequences of this, the consequence of the Camillus look at the last two verses of this paragraph, Thomas said to him, Lord, we do not know where you're going and how can we know the way Jesus said to him, I love this. I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the father except through me. Now I know we like to poke fun at Thomas. We like to chide him.
We like to call him the apostle with her? For a brain.
The apostle from Missouri. The show me state only to show me.
Can I just say I like his honesty. I think he is listening to Jesus. Peter didn't get it because he's even said he didn't get where you nobody's getting it, but maybe all of the other apostles, sort of like nodding their heads when Jesus talked he had yeah that's right and it's so heavy that's good. It's good, not Thomas.
He goes on again. It I have no idea what you just said I do know where you're going in Nevada know you're gonna need not to get there and I'm really glad he piped up because Jesus gave a real good answer to his piping up we have a record and I'm glad we do verse six I am the way the truth and the life. No one comes to the father except through me. Not everyone's gonna make it to the father's house. The rapture is a selective event. It is reserved for family only the father's house. It's sad but true.
The Bible says God is not willing that any should perish.
He didn't want anybody to perish eternally die eternally. He's not willing that any should perish but that also come to repentance. The sad truth is many new parish even though that is not God's design or desire so not everyone's going to make it to the father's house. Jesus says I am the way, the truth and the life. Now look at verse six and noticed something about this. It's a very narrowminded statement to a very dogmatic statement. He does not say I am a way I am one of many ways he does not say I will show you the way it does not say I will teach you the way says I am the way, I am the truth I am the life.
No one gets to the father except through me, will you agree that that is not what most people think when Jesus just said most people do not agree with most people think there's a heaven pretty much everybody is going all you gotta do to get to heaven is die, the actual truth is very few people make it to heaven.
Not most, few Matthew chapter 7 Jesus is speaking interim by the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and many go in by it.
But narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life and there are few you who find it. Peter said in acts chapter 4.
Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved for that's narrowminded boy that's dogmatic you know why it is because it's true that's that that's the nature of truth. Truth happens to be dogmatic. You know I had a math teacher. She was so dogmatic. 2+2 in her mind always had equal for if I said yeah but today I sort of feel like it could be five you get along all your so dogmatic you're so narrowminded. Yeah, I can afford to be your answer is wrong and this happens to be right about the way your bank is very dogmatic, you might decide not to want to make the full payment is made $20 for my house this month.
Okay, they'll let you know that you are wrong in your assessment and they'll be narrow and dogmatic going forward so the good news is Jesus is coming back. The good news is Jesus coming back. The bad news is Jesus is coming back and depending on who you are, will determine if that's good or bad news. If you come to Jesus to be introduced to the father of your introduce of the father. You get to the father's house.
If you don't come to the Savior. You'll never know the father. If you don't know the father you will never get to the father's no one comes to the father except through Christian back to the bumper sticker Jesus is coming look busy. Forget that Jesus is coming be busy right work. While it is day for the night is coming when no man can work.
Our Lord said, now's the time to be busy about his business and not be overwhelmed with what's going on yes to be diligent yesterday responsible not to be overwhelmed not to be fearful not to be weighed down with because of the certainty of that Skip Heitzig six number one message on our top 40 messages countdown from his series 2020 message and more Scripps teachings as well as full-length sermon series anywhere any time on any device.
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Imagine the challenge faced Skip Heitzig is taught over 3500 through the Bible messages we had to pick the top 10 for special resource offer you simple shifts are we in the last days.
Yes, but we been in the last days for 2000 years. The time between the first coming of Christ in the second coming of Christ falls under the designation, the last date this town effects of Skip's content teachings are messages want to hear and share one of the things I love about God is he's not complicated.
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