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We Are Going WHERE?
A scriptural study of the end time.
Rapture- post –pre- going up – going down – going nowhere – or WHERE?
With all the churches teaching their particular doctrine on the end time it is time for a SCRIPTURAL STUDY of this important time in human history. We will look closely at what the SCRIPTURES say to learn the truth from God’s perspective. “you shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free”
But before we begin; In these days of deception we must learn to find truth from the scriptures. We must believe and trust the scriptures only when it comes to the things of God.. We must use scripture only to interpret scripture – no scriptures are contradictory, all work together to give complete truth. We must understand we are not to accept what any man (or woman) (yes that includes me) teaches as truth until we have measured it against scripture and it agrees. If it does not pass the test of scripture we MUST cast it away. This is our only protection from the false teachers trying to deceive us that are so prolific in these days and that Paul and the other apostles warmed us about so many times. Every teacher will answer to God for what he teaches but YOU and only YOU will answer to God for what You believe.
Unfortunately most of todays big name ministries teach as much error as they do truth and you must learn to protect yourself from believing what is simply not a truth of God. One easy way to eliminate a lot of the false teachers and “churches” is their outlook on money. If their major emphasis is on money and their programs and not on knowing Christ more intimately then stay away from them. Scripture says that God’s children will not Be found begging ,but we see them begging and pleading and all sorts of other ways to raise money for their programs. A real ministry of God may acknowledge the need but will never beg or plead for it, they will wait patiently for God to provide ( the timing may be what God wants to adjust) . Yes ministry requires money but if it is God’s ministry He will supply all the needs in HIS time and His way and if it is man’s ministry then the man must raise the money in his time and his way. True Godly ministry is not about money it is about serving God-His way. True Godly ministry does not care about money or fame or numbers of people but about people and the truths of God’s word. Its time to stop supporting those who claim to be of God but teach error for their self gratification. Its time to confront them with the truth when they teach error. Whether a ministry has a large or a small following is not important what is important is if they teach only truth.
Now back to our study.
HEAVEN / In the beginning
Since all seem to agree on one thing—we will be going to heaven-. So at this time I believe we can all agree that ultimately we will all (all of God’s people- the saints of God) Join the Lord in heaven—wherever that turns out to be after the end. And there are so many opinions on the location of heaven lets first see where God says heaven is. Does it really exist? Where is it if it does . “In the beginning God created—“ So lets go to the creation story in Genesis. Most people I ask about where heaven is say they don’t know- but God tells us clearly in Genesis.
Gen 1:6 6 Then God said, "Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters." 7 Thus God made the firmament, and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament; and it was so. 8 And God called the firmament HEAVEN. So the evening and the morning were the second day.
So here we see the creation of heaven, this is strongs word 8064 Heaven. Used throughout the old testament as “heaven” Heaven is the space beween and including the surface of the earth and the waters above wherever they are , somewhere above that which we call outer space. So the surface of the earth is actually in heaven. And since we are all going to be together in heaven after the end it is interesting to note that if all the people of the earth were to “go up” from Where they are they would all fly off in different directions and never come together. So now that we know where heaven actually is we now need to know what this means to us for the end times -so back to scripture.
The End Time
Since we are looking for what happens in the end and where we will end up in ‘heaven’ we must next go to the scriptural account of what happens in the end. So we must go to the two scriptural accounts of the end time. Since it takes two witnesses to establish a doctrine we find them in Matthew 24:37-42 and Luke 17:26-36.
Take time to read these scriptures clearly and refer to them as we discuss them.
37 But as the days of Noah were, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be. 38 For as in the days before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, 39 and did not know until the flood came and took them all away, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be. 40 Then two men will be in the field: one will be taken and the other left. 41 Two women will be grinding at the mill: one will be taken and the other left. 42 Watch therefore, for you do not know what hour your Lord is coming.
26 And as it was in the days of Noah, so it will be also in the days of the Son of Man: 27 They ate, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and the flood came and destroyed them all. 28 Likewise as it was also in the days of Lot: They ate, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they built; 29 but on the day that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven and destroyed them all. 30 Even so will it be in the day when the Son of Man is revealed. 31 "In that day, he who is on the housetop, and his goods are in the house, let him not come down to take them away. And likewise the one who is in the field, let him not turn back. 32 Remember Lot's wife. 33 Whoever seeks to save his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life will preserve it. 34 I tell you, in that night there will be two men in one bed: the one will be taken and the other will be left. 35 Two women will be grinding together: the one will be taken and the other left. 36 Two men will be in the field: the one will be taken and the other left."
These two scriptures are commonly used as they are the scriptural explanation of the end time – scripturally referred to as “the day of the Lord “and” the day of the Son of man.” BUT THEY ARE ALMOST ALWAYS USED WRONG. Read them closely as I explain what they really say.
Both begin with the same picture “ as it was in the days of Noah” which means it will be just like it happened in Noahs day when God cleansed the earth the first time. Forget all you have been taught and just read and understand what the scriptures are saying. Do you see and understand this Now lets continue as it is explained in detail- just as it happened in Noah’s day. All the unrighteous were ignoring God’s warning and doing their thing- in rebellion to God- not recognizing His existence and authority. ( sounds familiar doesn’t it) Then in God’s appointed time, the flood came and TOOK THEM ALL AWAY. Who was taken away? Not the righteous, they were safe in the ark because Noah recognized and accepted God’s authority and listened to and OBEYED Him. It even gives us a second example of Lot (remember it takes two witnesses to establish a thing) And also an example here of how important it will be to follow His instructions completely. He could not destroy Sodom and Gamorrah until Lot was safe. Lot was saved because he followed God’s instructions but his wife was destroyed because of her disobedience—she looked back.
Now it goes on to tell us that some are taken and some are left—most teachers say the righteous are taken from the earth but the Word of God does not say that ,the Word of God says exactly the opposite it says that as it was in Noah’s day the Unrighteous will be taken. Do you see it, it is so clear.
Lets look at it one more time, As it was in the day of Noah. God instructed Noah, not long before the time. He was given time to prepare but not much extra time, he had to get busy and do as he was instructed in order to be saved. But God INSTRUCTED him when it was time. He prepared him to STAY here , not leave, He protected him through the time of destruction He did NOT remove him from the flood He Protected him IN the flood. . Do you understand this. God’s ways are not our ways. Noah and his family were saved only by his absolute obedience to God. They never left the earth. The flood wasn’t even a minor inconvenience to Noah as he was totally prepared and they saw the salvation of God. Yet all living things other than those in God’s hand of protection (the ark) were destroyed. My dear friends we are not going anywhere, we will be here during the end and we will need to, as Noah did , hear and follow Gods instructions completely and we will also see the salvation of our God. Then will come the end and then the judgement.
The Israelites Time of Trouble
Here is another story of God’s total protection that further prove that god”s way is deliverance thru not removal from times of trouble
If you are not familiar with the bondage and deliverance by Moses of the Israelites by Egypt And even if you are I recommend you read the story found in the book of the Exodus before you continue here.
The most pertinent scriptures are listed below:
When God had prepared for the deliverance of the Israelites by first protecting then placing Moses in the house of pharaoh, king of Egypt, then protecting him again while he was in exile, the commissioning him and sending him to deliver the Israelites out of bondage. They went through and had to endure the first three plagues that afflicted Egypt, but then God said enough and showed Himself as their protector by not allowing any further plagues to touch them. Then He has them prepare for the final and most devastating plague of all the death of all firstborn in the land. Then because for the only time in their history EVERY one followed God’s direction explicitly, He protected them from the deaths that were to come to all the firstborn in the land that were without His protection.
Ex 9:26 26 Only in the land of Goshen, where the children of Israel were, there was no hail.
Ex 10:23 23 They did not see one another; nor did anyone rise from his place for three days. But all the children of Israel had light in their dwellings.
Ex 11:1 11 And the Lord said to Moses, "I will bring one more plague on Pharaoh and on Egypt. Afterward he will let you go from here. When he lets you go, he will surely drive you out of here altogether.
Ex 11:4-8 then Moses said, "Thus says the Lord: 'About midnight I will go out into the midst of Egypt; 5 and all the firstborn in the land of Egypt shall die, from the firstborn of Pharaoh who sits on his throne, even to the firstborn of the female servant who is behind the handmill, and all the firstborn of the animals. 6 Then there shall be a great cry throughout all the land of Egypt, such as was not like it before, nor shall be like it again. 7 But against none of the children of Israel shall a dog move its tongue, against man or beast, that you may know that the Lord does make a difference between the Egyptians and Israel.'
Ex 12:29-31 29 And it came to pass at midnight that the Lord struck all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, from the firstborn of Pharaoh who sat on his throne to the firstborn of the captive who was in the dungeon, and all the firstborn of livestock. 30 So Pharaoh rose in the night, he, all his servants, and all the Egyptians; and there was a great cry in Egypt, for there was not a house where there was not one dead.
Then you know if you have read the story, God goes on to lead them through the sea on a dry path that becomes a wet mire and entraps the Egyptians as God allows the water to return and drown them. Then, in spite of their disbelief, God feeds, waters and protect them for 40 years in the wilderness, not even allowing their clothing to wear out. Another example of God’s way. Going through not being taken out.
The Rapture Deception and its Source.
In the early 1800’s there were several prominent ministers that were influenced by Edward Irving. Some of these were John Darby (organizer of the Plymouth Brethren), C.H. MacIntosh and C.I.Schofield.. In the spring of 1830 a woman by The name of Margaret McDonald in Port Glasgow,Scotland had a vision. I have read her handwritten account of the vision and though it is generally taught that it was not from the Holy Spirit, after reading it I believe she heard from God and the men that took ahold of her vision did not have the proper Spiritual understanding of it and modified it to suit their purposes. What she saw was purely Spiritual and they made it physical. She made it clear in her writing of it that it was Spiritual and that it might be misunderstood by those not having sufficient Spiritual understanding. Prior to her vision there was some teaching by a Jesuit priest about this rapture theory. But in the church of Jesu s Christ it had never been heard of. It appears that Irving put that together with her vision and thereby validated the “rapture” doctrine in His eyes. Irving had been defrocked by the church of Scotland for his teachings on the sinfulness of Christ’s humanity. Schofield and others picked up on this “new” doctrine and began teaching it with their own modifications. This “new” teaching was introduced into The United States in the 1860’s and 1870’s though it may have been introduced as early as 1840 as Darby had visited the US 6 times. C.I. Schofield, a Congregationalist preacher was influenced by Darby and started teaching this doctrine of his. Schofield was the writer of the “Schofield Reference Bible”, 3 million copies of which were printed in the first 50 years. This gave this false doctrine a great and widespread influence and it is still being used today . And it is still promoting, along with many thousands of it adherants, this doctrine of men.
You can look up Darby, Irving, Schofield and McDonald on the internet for further understanding of the beginning and spread of this false doctrine.
Where will we Go?
Now we need to look at the next thing that is almost never taught, but is of utmost importance to us as Christians.
There are many scriptures that talk about the righteous inheriting the earth and even scriptures that say the unrighteous will be removed and the righteous will not be moved. Yet most all “churches” and most popular ministries all teach that the saints will be removed from the -- earth. This is simply not true. It is in fact , the opposite of what scripture teaches. Lets look at the scriptures and see which is true according to scripture. Before we continue read these scriptures and check that none are taken out of context. You will find what they say is exactly what they mean. So a question? How can we inherit the earth if we are going to fly away for a “rapture” as some say?
SCRIPTURES TO READ
12 Who is the man that fears the Lord?
Him shall He teach in the way He chooses.
13 He himself shall dwell in prosperity,
And his descendants shall inherit the earth.
9 For evildoers shall be cut off;
But those who wait on the Lord,
They shall inherit the earth.
10 For yet a little while and the wicked shall be no more;
Indeed, you will look carefully for his place,
But it shall be no more.
11 But the meek shall inherit the earth,
And shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace.
21 The wicked borrows and does not repay,
But the righteous shows mercy and gives.
22 For those blessed by Him shall inherit the earth,
But those cursed by Him shall be cut off
25 I have been young, and now am old;
Yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken,
Nor his descendants begging bread.
26 He is ever merciful, and lends;
And his descendants are blessed.
27 Depart from evil, and do good;
And dwell forevermore.
28 For the Lord loves justice,
And does not forsake His saints;
They are preserved forever,
But the descendants of the wicked shall be cut off.
29 The righteous shall inherit the land,
And dwell in it forever.
5 Blessed are the meek,
For they shall inherit the earth.
21 For the upright will dwell in the land,
And the blameless will remain in it;
22 But the wicked will be cut off from the earth,
And the unfaithful will be uprooted from it.
21 Also your people shall all be righteous;
They shall inherit the land forever,
There are more but these give you the picture I want you to see.
Do you begin to understand? Do you see God’s plan, can you follow the scripture? Are you ready to continue and see the rest of God’s plan. Good then lets continue.
There is much about the end times that has been covered and recovered many times so I will not endeavor to explain it again here. The rapturists teach that the saints will be removed from the earth BEFORE the great and fearful day of the Lord (they have several theories of just when but they are of no importance to us). There is not one scripture that tells of God EVER removing one of His people to avoid them going through a time of trouble , but there are however many that tell of His divine protection and provision while they are going THROUGH it. So we go to the scriptures to see what is truth.
We have already looked at the scriptures that tell us it will be as it was in the days of Noah. So we know the the unrighteous will be removed and the righteous will inherit the earth. The righteous will remain on the earth. So what then?
1 Cor 15:50-54 50 Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; nor does corruption inherit incorruption. 51 Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed — 52 in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. 53 For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. 54 So when this corruptible has put on incorruption, and this mortal has put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written: "Death is swallowed up in victory."
Rev 21:1-6 21 Now I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away. Also there was no more sea. 2 Then I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. 3 And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, "Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God. 4 And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away."
5 Then He who sat on the throne said, "Behold, I make all things new." And He said to me, "Write, for these words are true and faithful."
Rev 21:6-7 6 And He said to me, "It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. I will give of the fountain of the water of life freely to him who thirsts. 7 He who overcomes shall inherit all things, and I will be his God and he shall be My son
Although it is not spoken in as many words I believe these scriptures tell us that this end of all things is the new beginning – the start of eternity. And it will be happeneing right here on this earth. As it was in the days of noah, we will have a new- cleansed earth but it will be different in that it and all of us will be changed from finite to infinite. From mere mortals to immortals to spend the eternity with our loving father. And it will all happen -IN AN INSTANT.