How often do you really think about the rapture? I recall being in college and seminary and hoping for it on the day before a big exam – HA ! We had a roommate whom we really wondered about his salvation in college and played a prank on him. All the guys in the dorm vacated the building and hid out of sight when he came back from his job and we put our clothes in piles as if we’d been all transported to the clouds trying to get him to think seriously about it. As I recall it worked on him quite well !! But all jesting aside how often do you really think about Jesus’ return?
Someone once said we shouldn’t be so heavenly minded we’re no earthly good but I’d wager to say that adage needs to be reversed some these days. We are often so focused on what we can see and what’s up ahead in this life we don’t often think much about God’s return for us. Paul said to his Colossian friends, “If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.” (3:1-2). And he also wrote to his Thessalonian siblings in Christ, “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.” (1Thess.4:16-17). How do you really feel about that event? Does it scare you a little knowing you could be about your daily routines and all of a sudden you find yourself in the midst of a cumulus cloud looking the Lord in the “baby blues”? You know the whole, I’ve never experienced something like this before deal, so you’re a bit anxious? The fear of the unknown ! Or perhaps there’s a dread of if it were to happen today I’d be a little ashamed I didn’t do more for the Lord while on earth? Or are you relieved? No more car payments !! No more worldly worries !!
I’ve always found it interesting that at the end of the passage to the Thessalonians Paul sums up his teaching about the rapture with this verse, “Wherefore comfort one another with these words”. What words? Those about the rapture and the details he’d written about. He makes it a command for us all to speak of the rapture to each other in such a way so as to encourage and comfort us about this next great event on the prophetic calendar. No more car payments indeed is one perk of the Lord’s return but no more pain, no more suffering and sorrow. No more sin nature to contend with for when the rapture happens we will put on our glorified bodies !!
So, next time, you get a little down and too earthly minded just remember as a Christian you have a bright, bright future in store when all the trials of this life will be DONE ! Jesus will come back for YOU and YOU will leave behind a lot that’s wrong for everything that’s right ! Amen?