Rapture

1 Thessalonians 4:17 English Standard Version (ESV) Then we who are alive, who are left, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we will always be with the Lord.

Allow me to make this one point very clear, this is my personal opinion and only carries as much weight as my personal relationship with individuals will allow. It is my opinion and not of any pastor, teacher or theologian.

The etymology of the word rapture is Medieval Latin. There is an inherent danger in things coming out of that era, error. The letter was written in Greek and caught up in Greek is harpazo and its primary definition is to seize, carry off by force. I consider this as an act of my Lord who sits on the throne taking what is His, when He wants, and without explanation. He answers to no one.

The reason I am leery to breach this subject is directly related to the secular definition of rapture. According to Merriam Webster it is an expression or manifestation of ecstasy or passion. The subject of this willful act of God stirs up such passion within the church community as to cause us to lose focus on our calling.

Whenever we allow ourselves to be overwhelmed by our emotions we endanger ourselves of losing focus on God’s will, His purpose for us in the moment and the spreading of emotions rather than God’s agape love.

There are way too many unanswered question surrounding this coming event to know of a certainty the time and method of this event. This subject has been hashed over and over for hours, days and weeks to no consensus except to say, God’s will be done.

What are we ignoring that should be done while we waste time examining an event we might not even be alive to see happen? The answer to that is God’s will in this moment. Stop reading this and seek God’s will.

Timing

Matthew 16:20 English Standard Version (ESV) Then he strictly charged the disciples to tell no one that he was the Christ.

Yesterday we spoke about witnessing Christ. Later in the same chapter Jesus strictly forbids His disciples from telling anyone that He is the Christ. The next section of this chapter is about the events leading up to His crucifixion. Most of us can see that the command to keep silent was a temporary order that would be rescinded later. Nothing was to interfere with the forward momentum of His sacrifice.

After His ascension, why weren’t they spreading the gospel immediately? There were forty days between Passover and His ascension and another ten days after that before Pentecost. Why so long between the proof of His resurrection and their witnessing to the religious community?

Acts 1:7-8 English Standard Version

He said to them, “It is not for you to know times or seasons that the Father has fixed by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”

Jesus did not rescind His order to remain silent until just before His ascension. It was another 10 days before the Holy Spirit moved on them with power at Pentecost. There will always be this issue of insecurity within us as to when God will enact His will. God’s timing is perfect and we should look for His movement while not acting in our own strength.

Habakkuk 2:3 English Standard Version (ESV) For still the vision awaits its appointed time; it hastens to the end—it will not lie. If it seems slow, wait for it; it will surely come; it will not delay.

Just because we can see it coming does not give us the authority to make it happen.

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