Each One will Give an Account
The “chiliastic” view of biblical prophecy teaches that Jesus the Christ will literally reign on this earth for 1000 years before He transforms the universe into the New Heaven and New Earth. This doctrine has been much disparaged since the 3rd century, but it has been continually believed from the Apostles to the present day. This literal understanding of Scriptures anticipates the literal return of the Lord Jesus Christ to establish the Kingdom of God promised to the nation of Israel in spite of her failures on this present earth. It is the same grace that ultimately saves believers in Jesus today in spite of our failures. Jesus, the son of David, will rule from David’s throne in Jerusalem and put all his enemies “under his foot.”
Before Jesus returns to claim his throne Israel must be prepared to receive her king. She rejected her Messiah and crucified Him when he came the first time. This rejection postponed the establishment of the Kingdom of God and made way for the time of the Gentiles. A time when ALL people are being invited into God’s elect family by faith in the Lord Jesus. The Master has gone away for an unspecified period of time. In the meantime, his servants (believers) are to be SERVING him by “making disciples” of everyone, everywhere until his return.
His return will begin with a “catching away” of His people before He judges the world and prepares the Nation of Israel to receive him. This “catching away” is what we call the “rapture.” To be a part of this “rapture” you must be “born again.” To be born again you must put your trust in the person of the Lord Jesus Christ. He is God in the flesh, who lived the perfect life you could not live before God. He is also the One who died an acceptable death in your place so that you could have eternal life. He is also the ONE who rose from the dead on the third day proving He died for our sin and not His. He had no sin, so He could effectively die in our place and survive, since death had not claim on Him. He rose from the dead so that all who believe in Him could be made righteous, justified, before God. Those who believe in Jesus will experience the first resurrection which is to Life. Those NOT raised in the first resurrection will be raised in the 2nd resurrection to be finally judged and cast into the eternal Lake of Fire.
Are you ready for the FIRST Resurrection? All who have believed in Jesus before His return to reign as King of kings will experience the “catching away,” the Rapture.
*Erich Sauer describes the rapture this way.
The Rapture is a:
A Catching away – a taking out of all distress of soul and body (2 Cor. 5:2, 4; Phil. 3:21), out of all persecution and oppression by the foe, out of the entire sphere of sin (Rom. 6:6) and of death (Rom. 7:24). It is rest with all saints (2 Thes. 1:7) in “the day of the coming redemption” (Eph. 4:30; Rom. 8:23). This is the “redemption of the body.”
This catching away is an act of Divine Grace (1 Peter 1:13) freeing us from all sin. It is an act of Divine mercy, which we are waiting for (Jude 21) and will free us from all misery. It is an act of Divine omnipotence, which transfigures us into conformity with our Redeemer and elevates us to the most glorious spiritual body. (Phil 3:21)
“Rapture” is a strong word meaning to SNATCH or jerk out with force. 1 Thes 4:17; Acts 23:10). It also means to rescue with power as in the word “salvation” in 1 Thes. 1:10. The Greek word used is “rhuo” and is also used in 2 Tim. 4:17 speaking of rescuing Paul from the Lion’s jaws.
Strong military terms are used in reference to this event. The Lord himself will descend from heaven with an “alarm signal,” with a “word of command,” a “battle cry,” with a “trumpet clang” of the “trump of God.” And then, the royal Conqueror, accompanied by the armies of heaven, will unite with Himself forever His earthly warriors! Praise the Lord!
And this is very important because the rapture is:
A Catching Up! A uniting of the members of the Head (1Thes4:16, 17) for the purpose of perfecting His glory as the Redeemer (Eph. 1:23, John 14:2, 3). Thus for the first time the ENTIRE church will be with one another and the LORD not on earth but UP in heaven having been transfigured (1 Cor. 15:51, 52) in a moment in the twinkling of an eye in the air.
A Triumph! The air is the very sphere of operation of the evil one. He is the prince of the power of the air. This is the enemy’s headquarters. But it is in the AIR that the Lord declares His total victory as He gathers His Church in the heart of enemy territory. This is the BLESSED HOPE of the redeemed. Titus 2:13 cp. Isaiah 26:19, 35:10; 51:11.
*“The Triumph of the Crucified, A Survey of the History of Salvation in the New Testament” by Erich Sauer
CHART of the Book of Revelation