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The Rapture – Is it Real? - Part A

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The Truth Network Radio
May 16, 2022 6:00 am

The Rapture – Is it Real? - Part A

Connect with Skip Heitzig / Skip Heitzig

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May 16, 2022 6:00 am

The word rapture is not found in most English translations of Scripture, but the concept most certainly is. In the message "The Rapture—Is It Real?" Skip explores what this future event will be like.

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That is what is going on emotionally in the minds and hearts of the disciples during this event during the summer there be filled with anxiety filled with trouble. Jesus has announced that he is going to leave so he comforts and gives them a promise to leave but I'm in a combat Jesus is going to return coming for his people today on connect. Skip right, Skip explores the moment when Jesus returns for his church event which you can be a part before we begin to share about a resource that will encourage as you explore the faith and feelings of women in the Bible stands between you and a more fruitful walk with Jesus about how four prominent women in the Bible thinks their struggle to new teaching theories for my height and called Queens of the Bible on the Queen of Sheba hearing is the first step toward spiritual life right now, hearing step toward blessing because faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God hear more from Leng, she explores the faith in the failings of four different queens in Scripture. The Queens of the Bible collection of teaching is our way of saying thank you when you get $35 or more today to support this Bible teaching ministry. The cost of following Christ is to go wherever healing get your copy of these unique teachings when you call 819 to 18 eight or give online securely connect the Let's get into today's teacher, John chapter 14, as we begin our study with Skip when I came to Jesus Christ about 18 years of age and I remember that there were bumper stickers putting on their cars at that time. That said, Jesus is coming soon and then I noticed researchers that said Jesus is coming. Are you ready and then I saw one visit, Jesus is coming busy and I even remember something to the effect of Jesus is coming in boys. He ticked off. But all those bumper stickers have a message about how they were formed and that is the promise that Jesus Christ is coming and I want to talk to about that today from God's word. Specifically Jesus coming for his church, something we call the rapture of the church. I'll be honest with you the first time somebody told me about a rapture.

I stopped them and I said what explain this to me and they said well you Jesus and the come back for his church were to be taken up in the air and I had never heard of that concept before the raise in the tradition I was raised. I've never heard that and I told him I said you gotta be kidding right you don't actually believe that's going to happen is what the Bible says Annapolis and that probably a misreading of itself. He gave me all the tax and I went home and I read first Thessalonians chapter 4 first Corinthians chapter 15 John chapter 14 others and I remember thinking he's absolutely right. That's exactly what the Bible predicts will happen as outlandish as it sounded to a young convert at the time I quickly realize the Bible indeed predicts this event but I didn't understand how that event was in the worker. I didn't understand how it would motivate a person and I even remember having some friends who got so geeky about the coming of the Lord they became irresponsible in their present day life, so they were thinking like on his bail out of school or I'm going to charge things up on my credit card Jesus is coming anyway, I'll never have to pay them back and do all sorts of irresponsible behaviors, and I even found myself praying for the Lord soon return it very opportune times for me personally. So like, just before a final exam. Even so, come quickly, Lord Jesus, or when there were lights flashing in my rearview mirror and I was being pulled over by law enforcement officer and I remember thinking Lord. This would be a great time for you to show up right now back, I think it would make a real impact on the officer trying to get me to stick one time it was in the summer.

I had been a believer a few months I come to believe in this doctrine that I am presenting to you here today in the Bible clearly presents. I remember going to home Bible study. One evening I knocked on the door. There was no answer knocked on the door again no answer.

The door was ajar enough that I just sort of impose myself because I knew these people. I open the door. I walked into the living room and there on the living room floor were scattered Bibles of people by chairs and by pillows and there were like a jacket and notebooks and it was obviously people had been in that room and I looked and all I saw was that in no people, and of course I panicked my my immediate thought is the Lord has come back for his church and I wasn't ready.

I wasn't taken. I freaked out and I start hyperventilating panting walk into the house and calling out names and finally I get in to the back of the house of the kitchen is in incomes. The group of people from the backyard to the kitchen into the living rooms in case What's up and I thought they were playing a joke on me.

That said, no, there was just a low-flying airplane in the backyard and we were all watching you do stunts but I gotta tell you, I will never forget the feeling of thinking I was left behind.

Speaking of low-flying airplanes in in that era, there was a Vanguard Christian musician by the name of Larry Norman who wrote a song about this event about the rapture and that he gave an interesting title. He called a UFO, and the words are. He's an unidentified flying object. You will see him in the air.

He's an unidentified flying object.

You will drop your hands and stare you will be afraid to tell your neighbors. They will think that it's not true, but when they open up the morning papers. They will know they seen him to. He will come back like he promised. With the price already paid. He will gather up his followers and take them all away. He's an unidentified flying object. He will sweep down from the sky. He's an unidentified flying objects. Some will sleep, but will not die. I love that song when it came out probably most of you here don't remember that but it made a great impact on me and kind of place me in that awareness that the Lord could come back at any time. Jesus said he was coming back within a read that again in John chapter 14. Remember in 1984 Terminator one. Some of you remember Arnold Schwarzenegger's famous line in the in the police station be back Jesus said at first he said to his disciples the night he was having the last supper with them in that upper room. Let me show you the words John chapter 14 verse one let not your heart be troubled you believe in God believe also in me. You believe in God. I also am God, believe also in me.

In my father's house are many mansions, better translation, more literal translation rooms.

Rooms abiding places in my father's house are many rooms.

If it were not so I would've told you. I go to prepare a place for you and if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to myself where I am, there you may be also. Where I go you know and the way you know Thomas said to him, Lord, we don't know where you're going and how can we know the way Jesus said to him, I am the way the truth and the life.

No one comes to the father except through me not to understand the rapture is presented in John 14.

It helps to have a little bit of background in the Jewish wedding tradition.

This is based on that when a young man in Judaism came of age to get married he would go to the bride's house and enter into a formal engagement of betrothal he may have had that wedding arrange since he was a child but about a year before the wedding. He's going to enter into an engagement betrothal. After that goes back home to his father's house and begins to build a room onto where he and his bride will live after the wedding when the time for the marriage has calm. He goes to his father asked permission to go get his bride and then he goes from his father's house to the bride's house unannounced makes no announcement she has to be ready in advance.

She is to be ready at all times, along with the wedding party and when the groom is in the neighborhood near the house somebody blows a trumpet, a shofar announcing that up an event is taking place. Then when he gets to the bride's house, the groom lets out a shout introducing himself that he has come to get his bride. At which point she follows him back to his father's house where they have the wedding and then the wedding feast lasts about typically seven days. That's the Jewish wedding that Jesus is here at a meal in an upper room in Jerusalem with his disciples that is the last night, he spends with them. His passion across his public ministry is over, the nation has rejected him. The cross lies directly in front of him and so he turns his attention. His words is instruction and his comfort to his most intimate friends. His followers the apostles.

What I want to show you in the verses that I just read another verses are four aspects of Jesus coming four aspects. The first aspect is the comfort of his coming. The comfort of his coming.

He begins by saying let not your heart be troubled, is only one reason somebody says that and that would be because his audience is troubled, and they were troubled. Anxiety was filling the hearts of the apostles, moment by moment during that meal because Jesus has made some announcements so let's look at it. Go back if you don't mind, just a few verses to get the flavor of this back in the previous chapter, chapter 13 verse 33 little children, I shall be with you a little while longer. You will seek me and as I have said to the Jews where I am going, you cannot come so I say to you was quite an announcement. They didn't expect that all by the way, boys. I'm leaving. I your Messiah who is come, am leaving soon and you can follow me go down to verse 36 Simon Peter said Lord. Where are you going Jesus answered him, where I am going, you cannot follow me now, but you shall follow me after work. Let's sort of enigmatic so Peter said to him, Lord, why can I follow you now. I will lay down my life for your sake. You conceal the trouble going on in Peter's heart and then by the time we get to chapter 16 in verse six, Jesus says, because I have said these things to you, sorrow has filled your heart that is what is going on emotionally in the minds and hearts of the disciples during this event during the suck there being filled with anxiety filled with trouble. Jesus has announced that he is going to leave so he comforts them. He gives them a promise.

I'm gonna leave but I'm gonna come back and I'm in a get you know, look at again that command in verse one let not your heart be troubled. It is a command it's an imperative in the way it is written in the Greek language. It is a present passive imperative, which simply means he is giving a command for them to stop an action that is already going on. It's already going on it already has begun. The anxiety has begun. And Jesus says stop it, stop it, literally.

It's let not your heart continue to be agitated, stop being stressed. Stop freaking out.

Now the fact that it is a command shows me that we have the power to control the motion. This kind of emotion can be controlled. The fact that Jesus says stop but I'm giving you a command to do it whenever Jesus gives a command he gives with the command the capability to obey the command he would give you a command it's impossible.

So he gives them a command with the command is the capability to keep the command you have the power to stop freaking out. Why do I say that because the world is freaking out and as a Christian you have the power to not allow your mind not allow your heart to be overwhelmed. Let not your heart be troubled. Let that be Jesus. Where do you let not your heart be troubled, stop freaking out. Second Corinthians chapter 10 bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ. Romans chapter 12 do not be conformed to this world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. First Peter chapter 1/3 up the loins of your mind, it's an old-fashioned way of saying think clearly and be self controlled exercise self-control stop going in that direction. Mental now what that tells me is this the key to peace is to replace anxiety in the present with the certainty of the future when say again, the key to peace is to replace the anxiety we feel experience in the present with the certainty of the future certainty the future of the future is uncertain. That's why we freak out because we don't know what's going to happen we we face an uncertain future.

Yes you do partially course you know what's can happen day-to-day. Nobody does it, and it was in the lives gonna die what might happen catastrophically around the world. Nobody knows that. But there are certain things you do know, and those things you do know not to bring you comfort and settle your to same thing that Paul said to the Thessalonians. They were also freaking out because Paula told them Jesus is coming back and the problem is they were being persecuted by the world.

The persecution was getting worse and to make matters much worse. You say Jesus is coming back with a lot of my relatives and friends have died so they're going to miss the event of his coming. So Paul writes words of comfort in first Thessalonians 4. He says no, the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the air to meet the Lord, so shall we ever be with him.

Therefore comfort one another with these words, how would that give them comfort the comfort as you are one day going to see the Lord.

And when you see the Lord to see the Lord with your love. They are also going to see the Lord. So there is comfort in these promises folks every tomorrow has two handles the handle of fear and the handle of faith.

Your choice which when you get a grant you can wake up tomorrow and grab the handle of fear. Most people grab that handle freak out freak out freak out to grab the handle of faith, you grab the handle of fear you to freak out if you grab the handle of faith are going to chill out as you really realize God is in control of the future and he has made me's pretty incredible promises that are certain so there's the words of Jesus.

Let not your hearts be troubled. Now, to comfort them specifically, you'll notice in verse two he points their thoughts toward heaven, verse two, he says, in my father's house are many mansions if it were not so I would've told you.

I go to prepare a place for you and if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to myself where I am, there you may be also.

Think about that for just a moment think about heaven, how he describes first of all heaven is a real place whenever Jesus spoke about heaven, he always spoke about heaven is being a real place.

You know why he did that because heaven is a real place.

That's what Jesus it's real. He knew it was like he had been there and in his existence.

Previously he was going back there, so he spoke about heaven as a real place, but here notice something else.

He speaks about heaven is a relational place.

He doesn't refer to it by the word heaven he does in other places, but here he calls it. My father's house that's relationship in my father's house there are many mansions, many rooms. He did that to comfort them because when you get to heaven there is to be the father. You'll see him there's going to be Jesus as your Savior and there's gonna be all those who follow Christ that are your friends and relatives who died or slept.

Before you, there will be that reunion.

So then heaven is like home. Your home is prices not because of what you have there, but whom you have heaven is precious because of whom is there so it's a real place.

It's a relational place 1/3 thing to notice in what Jesus comforts his disciples with is that heaven is a diverse place in my father's house there are many mansions and I told you, should be translated rooms mansions is sort of an unfortunate translation because when Americans hear the term mansions there thinking of like Texas oil ranches, you know you got like 20 acres and then the mansion the castle and then you got a whole bunch of land in your castle you got all this stuff going on.

It's better to think of it in terms of the Jewish wedding where the groom goes back and adds a room on so there's always room for more. You just keep adding and it's especially fun to think of it this way because when we get to Revelation 21. The new heavens and the new earth. There's a city that comes out of heaven toward the earth, called new Jerusalem, and the measurements happen to be given in Revelation 21 John sees an angel measure, the new Jerusalem and he says you know first devices I noticed that since odd shape. It's a cube it's the same depth and height and width and he measures at 12,000 furlongs on all sides.

That's 1380 miles or 1400 mile cube descending out of heaven to the earth roughly the size of the moon roughly 2,250,000 mi. and those that have studied. That said, the new Jerusalem. This city could easily accommodate 20 billion people.

And that's assuming that only 25% of the city is used for dwelling places and the other 75% use for streets parts, public buildings, etc. 20 billion people, and that each person could have a cubicle block of 75 acres on each face to themselves that we don't know exactly what that's going to be like this is an idea that's an estimation but I like the idea in my father's house are many rooms. I do know about you but when I get to have an ominous new around him to be knocking on doors and see what your room is like and I'm I could be sitting on a cloud. Plan a harp to be very busy just exploring the days to be a diverse place and then something else that is in this little comforting promise of Jesus as he directs his have thought their thoughts toward heaven, he tells them heaven will be a personalized place because notice that he says I go and prepare a place what are the next two words for you.

Remember what occupation Jesus had when he was raised by Joseph in Nazareth.

He was a carpenter, now is a custom builder now is making things custom-built for you. It took God six days to create the heavens and the earth. He spoke them into existence. He's been working on your place for 2000 years what you think that looks like don't know but it sounds a good thing to be awesome is making it just for you is one little girl said her father. If heaven Get on the wrong side was a look like on the right side.

I don't know something for you that Skip the message from the series you Skip to share how you can keep this broadcast going strong connect you and many others to the Lord as believers, we look forward to the future with hope when Christ will reign for eternity. That's good news for the entire world and we want to share that hope found in Jesus with as many people as possible. You can be a partner in that through your generosity when you give a gift, you also keep this ministry going strong so you can continue to receive encouragement through these messages here so you can give today visit to give a gift that's or call 800-922-1888, 800-922-1888. Thank you for your generosity and come back tomorrow as Skip Heitzig six years deeper insight into the rapture of the church and hope you can be prepared for the rapture, Jesus comes in the air and we need him in the air with four of the second coming of Jesus comes from heaven. The atmosphere away at the rapture comes to claimant's. I second coming

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