TODAY'S WORD FOR Tuesday, December 04, 2018:
The return of Jesus in the clouds to remove His church (believers) from this world and take them to heaven, ecstatic joy or delight; transformed to another place or sphere of existence.
Therefore, you also be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.
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.
I Thessalonians 4:16-17.
KNOWLEDGE AND EXPERIENCE:
Yesterday we discussed the word SIN. Today we want to talk about this exciting event, the Rapture, that could be coming very soon and it involves all of us who have accepted Jesus Christ as our Savior and are believers in Jesus Christ. Tomorrow we will share our thoughts on the Second coming of our Lord to this earth.
The word rapture is never found in the Bible but you will see today, through scripture, what is meant by the Rapture. Also, we want to point out that there are several doctrinal differences as to when the Rapture will come. We will share today our thoughts and then encourage you to study God’s Word so you can find your interpretation.
We all should know the following about the Rapture:
• In the Latin language, I Thessalonians 4:17 uses the word “rapio” which means “to catch up, to snatch away or to take out” (I Thessalonians 4:13-18).
• Jesus will appear in the sky and the resurrected church (those who have died) will meet Jesus in the sky. Jesus will then gather those who are alive and saved from the earth.
• Jesus leaves behind those on the earth who are not saved, the unrighteous, to begin enduring the wrath of God.
• The rapture will take place as fast as a blink of an eye (I Corinthians 15:51-53).
• The believers instantly obtain glorified immortal bodies and a crown of glory which will last forever (Philippians 3:20-21, I Peter 5:4 and II Timothy 4:8).
• Satan remains free to cause havoc and slaughter billions.
We all need to understand that the scripture (above) tells us that the Lord will come at an hour that no one will expect. We tell you this so that you do not get caught up at the many predictions that seem to come from some that say they know the time when the rapture will occur. No one knows when the rapture will happen but we do know it is the next prophesied major Biblical event in history.
The most important question for you today is that if the Lord would come today are you ready to meet Him? Nothing is more important for you than to be certain that you are ready if Jesus would return today. We hear some people say that because of all the good things they have done they are ready. They have been good parents, good workers on their job and good neighbors, etc. They have a whole list of things that they feel will make them worthy of heaven. These things are good but they are not what will get you into heaven to live eternally with Jesus.
In Matthew chapter 24 we have a lengthy account -- take a moment to read the chapter -- of how Jesus responded to His disciples when they asked about the date of His return. He told His disciples that only God the Father knows the date. In verse 36 He said, “But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, but My Father only.”
Jesus did say that when He returns it will be like it was in the days before the flood. The people carried on in their worldly evil mundane activities every day and were not prepared when God’s judgement struck. They watched Noah for months building an ark and they ignored his warnings of what was coming. No doubt they thought he was crazy but when the rain came it was too late for them to repent.
When Jesus returns it will be sudden and without warning. There will be no last chance to repent. Your choice will have already be made. Make sure today that you have accepted Jesus into your heart, asked for His forgiveness of your sins and then make that all important commitment to serve Him and Him alone. Remember – TOMORROW MAY BE TOO LATE!
Our memory verse for this week, Christmas month, is found in Luke 2:11.
For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.
Help me to be prepared for that great and exciting event of Your return to meet me in the clouds. May my actions always honor You and may others see You through me.
These Family Devotional thoughts are written by Dr. Ken Phillips, Executive Director of America's Hunger
Solution and Ministry Director for World Bible Society, and his wife Dottie. Ken has had ministry positions
with The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, World Vision, Youth For Christ, World Opportunities International,
and World Bible Society. He also has consulted for more than 30 Christian ministries in management and stewardship
development. They have published a book called No Problems Only Situations that discusses the journey of their family.
Ken and Dottie have been married for 60 years, and have 6 children, 20 grandchildren, and 3 great grandchildren. Their
second book, TODAY'S WORD, includes 365 daily
devotionals and is now available for only $10.
Ken & Dottie Phillips
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