NO WOE ZONE

 

Biblical Chronology and an End Times Perspective

 

 

 

The Rapture on the Last Day

 

 

Resurrection

            The Pharisees asked Jesus which is the greatest commandment. He replied, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself.[1] Words to live by.

 

            This was preceded by the Sadducees asking Jesus about reuniting with a spouse at the resurrection. He replied, “At the resurrection people will neither marry nor be given in marriage; they will be like the angels in heaven.[2] Words to live later by.

 

            When will this resurrection happen? Jesus said, “Do not be amazed at this, for a time is coming when all who are in their graves will hear his voice and come out—those who have done what is good will rise to live, and those who have done what is evil will rise to be condemned.[3] Words to sleep by.

 

       And the sequence of the resurrection, “Christ has indeed been raised from the dead, the first fruits of those who have fallen asleep… when he comes, those who belong to him. Then the end will come.”[4] The resurrection will occur when or after Jesus returns, and then the end.

 

          The good and evil will rise, and then the end. When? The angel Gabriel told Daniel, “But as for you, go on your way until the end. You will rest, and will arise to your inheritance at the end of the days.[5] Daniel’s resurrection is still in our future at the end of days.

 

When Jesus arrived after the death of Lazarus, He said to Martha, “’Your brother will rise again.’ Martha answered, ‘I know he will rise again in the resurrection at the last day.’[6] The resurrection will be at the last day.

 

What happens on the last day? Satan’s armies, “marched across the broad expanse of the earth and surrounded the camp of the saints and the beloved city. But fire came down from heaven and consumed them. And the devil who had deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and sulfur, into which the beast and the false prophet had already been thrown.”[7] And then follows the Great White Throne Judgment with those who did good, like Daniel, to live, and those who did evil, like Nero, to be condemned.

 

Stop. My sweet grandma Myrtle loved Jesus and is with Him now. She is in that mansion He promised,[8] her arthritis and limp gone, and she is praying for me to join her. She didn’t have to wait for that resurrection thing on the last day. And Creedo Cat purred.

 

Jesus promised He was going to prepare a place for you and Myrtle, and after he came back, He would welcome you there. Where does scripture say our souls will be between death and resurrection? Take care with the timing of Paul’s desire to be with the Lord.[9] And visions and revelations. No, don’t look at the paintings on the ceilings of medieval churches.

 

Start. On that last day Satan’s armies are attacking still living Saints. Fire comes down from heaven and consumes those deceived by the Devil. What about our future alive Saints? Can a living person be resurrected? This sounds like a mystery.

 

Paul wrote to the believers in Corinth about the resurrection. He said, “Listen, I tell you a mystery: We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed — in an instant, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed.”[10] Yes, listen, at the last trumpet those sleeping Saints will be followed by those living Saints and changed imperishable. The Resurrection will be followed by that ‘changed’ euphoria word, Rapture.[11]

 

The Last Trumpet will be on the Last Day. God is not going to burn up his living Saints on the Last Day. They will be Raptured imperishable. What else did Paul tell us?

 

By the word of the Lord, we declare to you that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord will by no means precede those who have fallen asleep. For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a loud command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will be the first to rise. After that, we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air.”[12]

 

         Now we have more timing and sequence. With a loud command Christ arrives with a Trumpet, then Resurrection, then Rapture. So, we search scripture and find only one related timing passage.

 

      Toward the end of End Times, after the Great Tribulation, Jesus said, “They will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven, with power and great glory. And He will send out His angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather His elect from the four winds, from one end of the heavens to the other.”[13] After Jesus returns will be another trumpet to gather the Elect which here can here include both the sleeping and still living Saints.

 

We have a simple scriptural sequence with three Rs:

1)    Return of Jesus, visible and noisy with a loud trumpet.

2)    Resurrection of dead Saints with a trumpet.

3)    Rapture of living Saints at the last trumpet.

 

Grandma Myrtle looking down from her heavenly mansion is not the only confusion factor for many believers. What about John’s vision in the Revelation with the visible return of Jesus[14] followed by the resurrection of Martyrs during the 1,000 years?[15] There are many variations of personal revelations and fill in the blanks as to our possible future, but the most beguiling is captured in the fiction, Left Behind.

 

Scripture sequence leaves behind the possibility of a Pre-Resurrection-Rapture. The mystery Rapture really does follow the general Resurrection, as stated by Paul. We are all left behind until after the visible and noisy return of Jesus. Christians and everyone else will live through the Tribulation.

 

And now a best-guess explanation of events during the 1,000 years. Satan, the accuser, is bound to not interfere with the First Resurrection of Martyrs whose souls have been secured under the altar of God.[16] This Resurrection is only for Martyrs and not for us who fall asleep naturally such as Daniel or Myrtle. It is called First as there is soon a later and Last general Resurrection for the rest of the good and all of the evil. These Martyrs get a special pass for the Last Judgment.

 

The 1,000 years may indeed be short as Peter’s End Times caution, With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day.[17] He was repeating the Psalm, A thousand years in your sight are like a day that has just gone by, or like a watch in the night.[18] With these we can understand Satan is bound for a brief time for the only thing named, the resurrection of dead Martyrs. They will reign with Christ in Heaven over the Angels.[19]

 

The 1,000 years in Revelation is stated six (6) times, so shouldn’t there be a literal Millennium? But wait, God promised to keep His covenant and love for 1,000 generations nine (9) times.[20] Nine is greater than six. His promise began with the Ten Commandments to Moses. If 1,000 generations are also literal, then Jesus won’t be coming back for thousands of years in our future.[21] Let one of those distant future generations consider the timing.

 

When Jesus is at the door for His return He had said, “this generation will not pass away until all these things have happened.[22] Jesus returns, and we sigh relief as the Beast’s army is destroyed. There is only time to blink during the 1,000 years as the armies of Gog and Magog just got riled up and are still after us. The generation that goes through the Tribulation will likely be there for the Rapture on the Last Day.

 

And the missing words of Jesus? The disciples asked Him, “what will be the sign of Your coming and of the end of the age?[23] Did Jesus reply, “When you notice millions of my people disappear you will know the end is near”? Which end? Or, is that too subtle?

 

How we reach that Last Day may have some more twists and turns, but Paul’s explanation of the mystery on that end of days is clear: Return, Resurrection, Rapture.

It will be the Last-Day-Rapture.

 

         What did Jesus say about Salvation and when we would meet Him in person? “No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws them, and I will raise them up at the last day.”[24]

  

         Stay with us and love your neighbor,

         Thy Kingdom come needs your labor.

 

The Trumpet blows to announce Rapture

Thank you, Jesus, our souls to capture.

 

[1] Matthew 22:37-39. Mark 12:30-31.

 

[2] Matthew 22:30, Mark 12:25, Luke 20:35-36.

 

[3] John 5:28-29.

 

[4] 1 Corinthians 15:20, 23, 24. It also sounds like no one from the OT was then resurrected.

 

[5] Daniel 12:13.

 

[6] John 11:23-24.

 

[7] Revelation 20:9-10.

 

[8] John 14:2-3.

 

[9] Philippians 1:23.

 

[10] 1 Corinthians 15:51-52.

 

[11] Rapture is not found in scripture but is understood to be changed from mortal to immortal without dying.

 

[12] 1 Thessalonians 4:15-17.

 

[13] Matthew 24:30-31.

 

[14] Revelation 19:11-21.

 

[15] Revelation 20:1-6.

 

[16] Revelation 6:9-11.

 

[17] 2 Peter 3:8.

 

[18] Psalm 90:4.

 

[19] 1 Corinthians 6:3 says, “Do you not know we will judge angels?”

 

[20] Exodus 20:6, Exodus, 34:7, Deuteronomy 5:10, Deuteronomy 7:9, 1 Chronicles 7:2, 1 Chronicles 7:4, 1 Chronicles 7:9, 1 Chronicles 16:5, Psalm 105:8.

 

[21] Roughly, if a generation is 20 years over 6,000 years, we are at 300 generations. With 700 generations to go the earth will still be around for 14,000 years or thereabouts.

 

[22] Matthew 24:34.

 

[23] Matthew 24:3.

 

[24] John 6:44.

 

 

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