1 Thessalonians 4:16-18 "For the Lord Himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: 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. Wherefore comfort one another with these words."
The rapture of the Church of Jesus Christ is the next great event on the horizon of time. Without going into great detail at this time, I want to give a few salient points as it pertains to this all important subject.
1] There are many signs of the times that point to the fact that we are living in the last of the last days. +Restoration of Israel as a nation in 1948, fulfilling Bible Prophecy +Wars and rumors of wars + Spiritual rebellion and outright apostasy + An emphasis on material prosperity and material and cultural influence + An increase of knowledge and fast paced travel + Many and various natural disasters + Perilous Times. + False Prophets will abound in the last days. For Example, the so called Kansas City Prophets that have fostered some of the worst false doctrine in the body of Christ. And now, we have Todd Bentley and his unbiblical angel craze, plus many more abberant doctrines. + Wickedness that beggars description + Demonic activity will continue to rise as we go deeper into the last days. +Persecution of the saints will become more pronounced, even in the USA, as we get closer to the Lords return. + At the same time, the true Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ will be spread throughout the earth at a breathtaking rate.
2] Now lets look at the purpose of the Rapture. + To resurrect the dead in Christ, separating them from the wicked dead. + To take the Saints to heaven, where their works will be judged, they will receive rewards, and partake in the Marriage Supper of the Lamb. + At the rapture, we will receive our immortal glorified bodies. + we, the saints, will be presented before the Father. + We will be made whole in Spirit, Soul, And Body. The saints will. +We, the saints, will escape the Great Tribulation. + The hinderer of lawlessness in the world, the church, will be removed. + The antichrist will then be revealed.
3] Who is worthy to escape? Those who are in Christ. The Greek word for worthy is "Axios" meaning, "deserving to be fit, to be accepted." Meaning that our living, our walk with the Lord, our Faith, our lifestyle proves our relationship with Christ.
4] EXAMINE YOURSELVES. 2 Corinthians 13:5 admonishes us to " Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the Faith, prove yourselves...." Examine means "to test, to try" ourselves to see whether Christ is truly living in our hearts. Paul is stating that there must be a true relationship between us and the Lord. Our actions are the actions of a true believer. The great question of the hour for every believer is simply, "Are You READY?" Those who are ready are listening for the trump of God.
we wish to thank Evangelist Donnie Swaggart for his insights on this topic.