The RAPTURE : The Blessed Hope
The RAPTURE : The Blessed Hope
What is the next major events to take place on earth ?
The "rapture" is the next major prophetic event that will take place in the body of Christ or the church. This event is imminent. It may happen right now, tonight or five years or more from now. The Word "rapture" appears in the Bible in the original Greek word "harpazo" which means "caught up" as written in I Thessalonians 4:16 - 17:
"For the Lord himself will come down from heaven with a commanding shout, with the call of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God. First all the Christians who died will rise from their graves . Then together with them, we who are still alive and remain on earth will be "caught up" in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air and remain with him forever."
The event called "rapture" which Christians often referred to as their "Blessed Hope" (surely it is the Blessed Hope) is the appointed time of great gathering of all the believers of all the ages from the time of Adam until that appointed day. They will be gathered in the sky to meet the Lord JesusChrist there.
What will really happen during the "Rapture" ?
At the sound of the trumpet blast, all the dead saints (true Christians and old testament saints) will be resurrected. They will receive their new "glorified body". This body is somewhat similar to the body of the Lord after His resurrection. This body will no longer experience pain nor death anymore. Even those who had been fed to the lions whose bodies were torn into pieces, will be made whole again. Their glorified body will be lifted up into the sky to meet the Lord there.
Next, the remaining true Christians (only those who have genuinely accepted Christ as Lord and Savior) will experience translation as written in I Corinthians 15 : 51-52 :
" But let me tell you a wonderful secret God revealed to us. Not all of us will die, but we will all be transferred . It will happen in a moment, in a blinking of an eye, when the last trumpet is blown. For when the trumpet sounds, the Christians who have died will be raised with transformed bodies. And then we who are living will be transformed so that we will never die."
The remaining Christians at that appointed time will not experience death, instead their mortal bodies will be changed into "glorified bodies." Then they will be lifted up into the sky to meet the Lord there in the air. After the rapture, the Antichrist will be revealed to the world and will rule the world for an appointed time.
When will the Rapture actually happen ?
No one knows the exact hour that the Rapture will actually happen. But true believers in Christ always believe that it is imminent, considering our generation, we could expect it to happen at any moment. It is written in Matthew 24:37 :
"As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. For in the days before the flood, people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage up to the day Noah entered the ark, and knew nothing about what will happen until the flood came and took them all away. That is how it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. "
This passage reveals that our generation could expect the rapture to take place. Why ? Because our time resembles much the time of Noah. What characterize Noah's time ? In Genesis 6 : 11-12 God saw that the earth was corrupt and was full of violence. Our time is also characterized by so much corruption and violence. During Noah's days people were also living "convenient" lives. They were carefree and had no any single idea of the impending judgement. They were always living as "business as usual", they had no fear of God in their hearts, and their hearts had no room for God
The same condition is true for the people of our time. They are so much preoccupied with the affairs of this life. They are more worried about not getting married rather than going to hell. Their hearts are very far from God and there is no fear of God in their hearts, they are living convenient lives.
Who are qualified for the Rapture ?
In order to be qualified for the rapture , one must be a true believer of the Lord JesusChrist who walks faithfully and obedient to all God's commands. The Lord Jesus admonishes to the Church in Philadelphia in Revelation 3: 10 :
"Since you have kept my command to endure patiently, I will also keep you from the hour of trial that is going to come upon the whole world to test those who live on the earth. "