Presentation on theme: "Why bother talking about the end times and the second coming of Christ?"— Presentation transcript:
Why bother talking about the end times and the second coming of Christ?
“If we aren’t acquainted with the end of the script, we can grow fearful or complacent in the play” Max Lucado
Both the Bible and Jesus give a high priority to talking about the end of the age and the second coming of Christ.
In fact, His return is called “the Blessed Hope”. (Titus 2:13)
Did you know? That one out of every 30 verses in the Bible addresses the subject of the end times or Christ’s return. For every prophecy of His first coming, there are about seven of His second coming. There are 300 references in the New Testament to His second coming. One-twentieth of N.T. devoted to 2 nd coming.
Could we possibly be the generation that sees His return? What are the Biblical Signs of the End of the Age?
Is Jesus coming back for sure? (remember, for every prophecy of His first coming, there are 7 of His second!) Many Scriptures where Jesus makes the promise: “I’ll be back”!
Today, we are going to wrestle a bit with these challenging questions: What’s this thing called the millennium? What about the seven year tribulation? What does the Bible say about the Rapture? Are things going to get better and better or worse and worse? OR Both? How should we then live?
Important prayer: “Lord,change my mind on every issue in which You and I do not see eye to eye”
In Revelation Chapter 20, the apostle John speaks six times of a thousand year period when Christ reigns on the earth. How does that fit into the second coming?
Various Views of the Second Coming in relation to the 1000 year Reign Latin word for 1000 years = Millennial A- millennial = NOT literal 1000 years (symbolic period of time)
Various Views of the Second Coming in relation to the 1000 year Reign The view that Christ returns to earth BEFORE His literal 1000 year reign is called “PRE-millennial”
Various Views of the Second Coming in relation to the 1000 year Reign The view that Christ returns AFTER a literal 1000 years is called “ Post-millennial ”
Various Views of the Second Coming in relation to the 1000 year Reign _____________________________ I I A-millennialism literal 1000 year reign (not literal) I _______I___________ I I Pre- Millennialism Post –Millennialism (Christ returns Before (Christ returns After 1000 year reign) 1000 year reign)
Amillennialism (no literal 1000 year reign) Christ returns Church Age--- Eternal state = Millennium resurrection, judgment, new heaven & earth (began with St. Augustine, 5th century & held by much of the Roman Catholic Church, Luther, Calvin, and Reformed Churches)
Post-millennialism (Christ returns After 1000 year reign) Christ returns church age eternal state gospel spreads Millennium resurrection (this optimistic view was popular during the Great Awakening, Puritan & missionary movements of 18 th and 19 th centuries)
Historic Pre-millennialism (Christ returns Before 1000 year reign) Christ returns meet Him in the air, return to earth with Him + Church Age Millennium Eternal State tribulation resurrection judgment new heaven (earliest held view) and earth “historic pre-mill”
Most folks who hold the Pre-millennial view believe there will be a literal seven year Great Tribulation period.
But Pre-millennial View has 5 options regarding the Tribulation (Rapture before……..in middle………….after tribulation) PUBLIC 3 1/2 3 1/2 SECOND ___________________________________________________ COMING T R I B U L A T I O N MILLENNINUM 1. Pre-tribulation 2. Mid-trib. Post-tribulation 3. Partial rapture of faithful 4. Historic (pre-trib or mid-trib rapture) 5. Apostolic (go to heaven for 3 ½ or 7 years) (meet in air, return to earth) I I
The Rapture Read: 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18 “…will be “caught up ” with them in the clouds to “meet” the Lord in the air”. “caught up” = to seize, snatch, rapture (not only will we be forever with the Lord, but we get new and improved glorified bodies!) Before we address the question of WHEN will the Rapture happen - before, during, or after the 7 year tribulation, we need to look at the Nature or purpose of the Rapture.
Purpose of the Rapture 1 Thess. 4:17 “will be caught up with them in the clouds to MEET the Lord in the air.” “to meet”, word is “apantesis”, used 4 times, Matt. 25:1, 6; Acts 28:15; 1 Thess. 4:17 Refers to going out to meet a dignitary and then escorting them back to their destination
3 Phases to the End Times 1.“Beginning of sorrows” (labour pains, Matt. 24:7-8) Time of increasing military conflict, terrorism, natural disasters, famines, economic turmoil (may have been triggered when Israel became a nation in 1948? Or when acquired Jerusalem in 1967?)
3 Phases to the End Times 1. “Beginning of Sorrows” (for decades) (followed by Daniel’s prophetic week of seven years) 2. Time of counterfeit peace & safety for 3 ½ years (1 Thess. 5:2-3; Dan. 9:27) A political leader makes a peace treaty with Israel & other other nations for seven years. He provides global solutions to global problems.
3 Phases to the End Times 1. “The Beginning of Sorrows” 2. Period of Peace and Safety (3 ½ years) 3. the Great Tribulation (hard labour pains, 3 ½ years) The Antichrist breaks the peace treaty, goes forth to conquer nations (the first Seal), persecutes Jews & Christians. Great revival, apostolic power, harvest, Jesus unleashes the 7 seals, 7 trumpets, 7 bowls of judgment on the antichrist, his evil armies and the wicked. Jesus returns in the sky in spectacular fashion, gathers His own (rapture), travels to Jerusalem, defeats antichrist, rescues the captives, sets up His true One World Government on the earth. (Mt. 24:21; Isa. 28:14-18; Dan. 9: Rev. 13:5-8; Rev. 6:2)
Pre-tribulational Pre-millennialism (Christ comes Before tribulation & Before 1000 year reign) Christ returns (in 2 stages) secret rapture public return (in heaven 3 ½ or 7 years) Church Age Tribulation 1000 yrs Eternal State resurrection judgment of believers new heaven and earth (teaching developed around 1830, very popular in North America)
Good news: “For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ…Therefore encourage one another…” 1 Thess.5:9-11 Wrath vs. tribulation God’s wrath/anger is towards the unrighteous Tribulation almost always refers to the persecution and suffering of Christians
5. Apostolic post-tribulation pre-mill. Christ returns tribulation &revival +-church age--end of age eternity Belief that we are coming into the best of times and the worst of times (Isaiah 60:1-3). Great trouble AND end-time apostolic power, revival and harvest before Christ returns.
The Bible speaks of the Great and Dreadful Day of the Lord. (Joel 2:31;Malichi 4:5; Acts 2:20) (it refers not only to the day Jesus shows up, but to these last 3 ½ years)
Partial-Preterist View Preterist = Past, believes Bible prophecies (Mt. 24, Rev.) mostly fulfilled in the past (1 st century) wars, famines, earthquakes, persecution by Nero (antichrist) “abomination of desolation” = Temple and Jerusalem destroyed in 70AD (Luke 21:20) No Great Tribulation, no antichrist at end of age Christ’s Kingdom operative when He sat down at the Father’s right hand. Kingdom is now, victorious apostolic church.
My Response to this view of partial-preterist 1. Yes, many of the Signs were fulfilled in 1 st century, but are yet to be fulfilled again in the future on a global scale : earthquakes, famines, wars, tribulation, global dictator/government. 2.Yes, the Kingdom is here now, but Scripture is clear it is not yet fully here. In times of revival & end times the Kingdom increases. At the Second Coming the Kingdom will be consummated 3. Yes,we will have a victorious, apostolic church & revival before end!
My concerns for those of the Partial-preterist and Pre-tribulation Rapture views: 1. Neither group are preparing to go through great trouble, tribulation and persecution. The first group believes all that already happened in the past and things will just get better and better. The second group believes it is still in the future but will be raptured out before it gets real bad. (false sense of security, potential offense at God, eg. China)
A further concern regarding those who hold the pre-tribulation view: 2. Most don’t expect nor are prepared for the coming apostolic age of great revival and harvest. They think things will just get worse & worse. And so there’s a tendency to be passive and disengaged from partnering with God for Kingdom transformation of culture and nations.
Regarding the end of the age and His return, Jesus repeatedly warns us: do not be deceived, do not get offended, do not be alarmed or freaked out, do not be passive, disengaged and asleep.
But rather: keep watch, pray, be alert, be prepared, keep your lamps filled with oil, be about my Father’s business, occupy until I come, persevere, faithfully endure, be radiantly confident and expectant, be an overcomer
How much more urgent are these warnings of Jesus if we are the generation that experiences all the drama at the end of the age, including Christ’s spectacular return?
Our loyalty to Jesus will be tested. Loyalty is: “an unswerving allegiance, rooted in faith and love, that binds hearts together in common purpose” (Bob Sorge)
We are in for the most exciting adventure of any generation! The ride is about to get very turbulent but exhilarating!
Everything is being shaken. Only the unshakeable Kingdom will remain. “the kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Christ, and he will reign for ever and ever.” Rev. 11:15 We will have the privilege of overcoming, of thriving with unshakable hope and bringing our God of hope and His divine solutions to others living in a very shakable world.
“No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love Him”!!! (1 Cor. 2:9)
“Look, he is coming with the clouds, And every eye will see him” (Rev. 1:7)