“And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight. And while they looked steadfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel; Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? This same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.”
Acts 1:9-11
This same Jesus which is taken up from you into Heaven shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven…
The Apostle Paul further affirms this truth as he writes: “For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the arch angel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive 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.” (1 Thess.4:16-17)
Christ was born in Bethlehem of Judea, lived in Nazareth thirty years, spent three and a half preaching throughout Galilee, Samaria, Judea and parts of Syria, was crucified on Calvary and laid in Joseph’s tomb. He arose triumphant from the grave, and forty days later he lead His followers out to Bethany, and from there ascended to heaven and took His place at the throne, at which time “He was crowned with glory and honor, King of Kings and Lord of Lords, Sovereign of the earth and sky!” This same Jesus will come back again! He Himself declared it to His disciples… “I will come again.”
There are many denominations that honestly believe and teach that there are TWO distinct “appearings” of Christ in the future.
This mistaken concept has developed from these two separate scriptures.
The first Scripture is found in Jude 14,15
“And Enoch also, the seventh from Adam, prophesied of these, saying, BEHOLD, THE LORD COMETH WITH TEN THOUSAND SAINTS,to execute judgment upon all that are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have ungodly committed, and of all their hard speeches which ungodly sinners have spoken against him”
The second scripture is found in I Thess. 3:13
“To the end he may establish your hearts unblameable in holiness before God, even our Father, AT THE COMING OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST WITH ALL HIS SAINTS.”
The false assumption is made, that Christ will FIRST come FOR his Bride, the church. The saints will be caught up to meet him in the air and then accompany him to heaven. Many denominations teach that this will be that period of a thousand years, either before or after a supposed, “Seven year tribulation period.” The conclusion is then drawn, that Christ will come again at a later time WITH his saints to execute judgment. Again a false concept has replaced the truth.
The Millennial advocates use the following two scriptures to substantiate their concept.
The first scripture is found in 1 Thess 4:16-17
“For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the arch angel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: (verse 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.”
Those who have been taught the concept of another age to come, have placed this so-called “Millennial age” between these two verses. God has NOT placed a period of a thousand years between these two scriptures.
The apostle Paul gives us the full understanding and the truth of this event in 1 Thess.4:13-14 when he writes…
“But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep,(have died in the physical body) that you sorrow not, even as others who have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so THEM WHICH ALSO SLEEP IN JESUS WILL GOD BRING WITH HIM.”
The saints who will accompany Christ at His return, are the innumerable host of the souls of all the believers who have died from the time of Adam until the last believer before His coming.
It is the Souls of all who have been resting in Paradise that the Lord is returning with. The Bible tells us “to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord.” Just as Christ promised the theif on the cross…”Today thou shalt be with me in Paradise.”
Christ will return with the souls of All the saints throughout the ages whose bodies have slumbering in the earth and sea. These are the ones that God will bring with Him.
The scriptures tell us that…”The dead in Christ shall rise FIRST, THEN WE which are alive at His coming will be caught up to be with him in the air and so shall we ever be with the Lord.”
“Coming” is used in the Singular Vernacular
Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of the Lord. 2 Thess. 2:1
Preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord, Thess. 5:23
What shall be the sign of thy coming? Matt. 24:3
Whom the Lord shall destroy with the brightness of his coming. 2 Thess 2:8
The coming of the Lord draweth night Jas. 5:8
Be patient therefore, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord. Jas. 5:7
There are more than one hundred additional scriptures that use the word COMING in the singular vernacular. However! One scripture is as valid as one hundred, for the truth never contradicts itself…IF…it is kept in proper context. There is not a single scripture in the Bible that speaks in the PLURAL about Christ’s COMING.
The Hope of His Appearing
“Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious APPEARING of the great God and our Savior Jesus Christ.” (Titus 2:13)
“So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and to those who look for him shall he appear the SECOND TIME without sin unto salvation.” (Heb. 9:28)
These scriptures verify the two advents of Christ into this world. The first appearance was in the beginning of this gospel age. Jesus Christ appeared as the world’s Redeemer and Savior, “offered to bear the sins of many.” Then it is written that He will appear the SECOND time at the end of the ages.
The scripture clearly says, “He will appear the SECOND time.”
NOT a second and a third time…ONLY a SECOND time. Amen?
Christ’s Appearing will be visible to all
“Behold, he cometh with clouds; and EVERY EYE SHALL SEE HIM, and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him.” (Rev.1:7)
“The powers of heaven shall be shaken. And then shall they SEE the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory.” (Luke 21:26-27)
“And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall SEE the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.” (Matt. 24:30)
Christ’s coming will be unexpected
The multitudes of people in the world will not be expecting Christ’s return! Only those who have been redeemed by the blood of the Lamb are, “Looking for that blessed hope and glorious appearing.”
The scriptures forewarn every person of this entire unexpectated event.
The apostle Paul penned these words of warning…”For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a theif in the night. For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them…and they shall not escape.”
(1 Thess. 5:2-3)
This admonishment is to ALL…”And take heed unto yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting, and drunkenness, and the cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares. For as a snare shall it come upon all them that dwell on the face of the whole earth. Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be counted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.”
(Luke 21:34-36)
The return of the Lord Jesus Christ is eminent! It is that great and solemn event pending! God’s people are instructed to, “watch and Pray and be ready, for in an hour that ye think not the Son of man will appear.”
No man knows that day, not even the Son. It is in the Heavenly Father’s knowledge alone! This will be a day like no other since the foundation of the earth!
Many Biblical accounts are given of the vengeance and wrath of God. It was an unbelieveable day of wrath when God opened the waters of the deep and brought torents of rain from the heavens above for forty days and forty nights. That great Deluge overwhelmed teaming millions into one common watery grave!
The plagues that the Lord sent forth upon the Egyptians surely did strike terror in those people who lived in ancient times. Waters were turned to blood, insects and flies swarmed upon every beast of the field and human beings also! Boils, sickness and pestilence came upon all! Darkness covered the earth! Fire and hail fell in unnatural and astronomical proportions! It was an awful night in Egypt when every family cried out in grief as the death angel took their first born.
However! This “Day of the coming of the Lord” will exceed them all! For the Great God of heaven and earth, the Creator of the Universe and all that there is, shall step down from the heavenly portals Himself to take vengeance upon them that know Him not!
The Resurrection Chart
There will be one universal resurrection
John, the Revelator writes this concerning Jesus Christ’s appearing in the heavens…
“Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him: and all the kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him.” (Rev. 1:7)
Every eye shall see Him! This scripture verifies that all humanity will be raised at one time, not in seperate raptures as some teach. Christ gave to His servant John an abundance of scriptures concerning this great and notable event.
John writes…
“And I saw a great white throne and him that sat on it. And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things that were written in the books, according to their works. And the sea gave up its dead which were in it. And they were judged every man according to their works….And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.”
(Rev. 20:11-15)
ALL of the dead are seen here coming forth TOGETHER from the land and the sea, and then IMMEDIATELY following is the judgment. The separation of the RIGHTEOUS and the WICKED will take place SIMULTANEOUSLY.
The scripture states…”And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.”
In that day of final retribution, some were found in the book of life and others were not. If ALL the dead were not raised together, this could not be true.
The Righteous and the wicked raised together
These scriptures and many others clearly indicate that ALL the dead come forth from the land and sea simultaneously. The judgment and the separation of the righteous and the wicked will be accomplished as ALL meet before the throne of God.
Some in the Christian community have lifted many scriptures from their original context and devised more than one general judgment. The scriptures speak of only ONE bodily resurrection.
Hear the Apostle Paul’s confirmation in his letter to the Corinthians. He writes…
“Behold, I show you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible and we shall be changed.”
How many trumpets will there be? All the scriptures concerning the resurrection of the dead and the return of Christ speak of the “LAST TRUMPET.”
Can there be one, two or three more to follow the LAST TRUMPET? Not according to the word of God! How could another trumpet sound after the LAST one to call forth the wicked a thousand years after the “last trump” had already sounded? ALL the living shall be changed at the “last trumpet.”
Jesus Himself spoke of this time also…
“Marvel not at this, for the hour is coming, in which ALL that are in the graves shall hear his voice. And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation.”
(John 5:28-29)
Jesus does not present TWO resurrections here!
This is a Bodily Resurrection
The whole foundation of the Christian faith stands upon the fact that Jesus Christ was resurrected from the dead. This gives assurance to every true believer, that because He was resurrected, we shall be also. The future resurrection of the dead is assured by the Apostle Paul’s defense given in the fifteenth chapter of First Corinthians.
He affirms this truth…
“If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable. But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the first fruits of them that slept. For since by man (Adam) came death, by man (Christ Jesus) came the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.” (1 Cor. 15:2-22)
He concludes…”If the dead rise not, then is not Christ raised. And if Christ be not raised, your faith is in vain; ye are yet in your sins.”
There is abundant proof of Christ’s resurrection in the inspired Word of God.
Matthew records that…”The angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and rolled the stone from the door and sat upon it. His countenance was like lightening, and his raiment white as snow. And for fear of him the keepers did shake, and became as dead men.” (Matt. 28:24)
We also have the positive testimony of Christ’s resurrection from the angel who rolled the stone away.
“And the angel answered and said unto the women, Fear not ye: for I know that ye seek Jesus, which was crucified. He is not here: for he is risen as he said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay. and go quickly, and tell his disciples that he is risen from the dead.”
Final Things