Not even Jesus when He was in the flesh; the perfect one, was given this date and time; but only by pointing towards the fig tree, other signs, and symbols are students of the Word given a glimpse of the season for the Rapture. They know its coming and so does the world! God told us He would give us celestial bodies for pending changes and completion of His timeline as stated; "And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars" - Lk. 21:25. But that's is at best no different than the local weatherman telling us of pending climate changes especially as it applies to impactful disasters to the population. God intends to keep us not only attuned but also in the dark as to the specifics of His plan. The same as He did with the birth, death, and resurrection of Jesus; because as stated; “which none of the rulers of this age knew; for had they known, they would not have crucified the LORD of Glory (Jesus)” - 1 Cor. 2:8.

It often amuses me when church people come up with times to the Rapture and the urgency of cleaning “house” for its appearance as if one can know the exact time that bus leaves for Heaven. It's just a waste of time and effort! Now, to be clear! The Rapture is important but it is not critical! Why? Because God said so; and because His focus has always been as stated; “God our Savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the Knowledge of the Truth - 1 Tim. 2:3. So regardless of research, examinations, endless theses, and debates; it's all a waste of time that could be used more productive for other critical issues like building and strengthening the Body of Christ to be warriors against satan and being deployed for the lost's Salvation. It marvels me every year that most churches teach Salvation to those in their churches who are already saved and have slow or no growth but revolving congregations through their doors. That's the definition of insanity; expecting different results while doing the same thing over and over. 

Many churches have become nothing more than a way station waiting for the Rapture bus as they cycle through generations, decorate, improve the building and facilities, and add another social bake sale “churchaton” for the same members year in year out. Most churches are not imitators of Christ! They are reflections of mankind's constructs of what civil society is built on. This is because they operate under man's laws for the charitable tax exemption and the result is as stated; "the borrower is a slave to the lender" - Prob. 22:7. Did Jesus not give us the example to be financially independent of Caesar and to pay taxes? Jesus by His standards would be considered uncivilized and rebellious to the hierarchy of these manmade institutions. Some say that was a different time compared to today. With that thinking, no wonder the church is a roller coaster unlike the ministry of Jesus which is stable, and eternal for all Ages. Jesus stood in direct opposition to the world's laws by not chaining Himself to them for "thirty pieces of silver" or by today's terms; a tax refund. Jesus also may have thrown out the money changers from His Father's house but His intention was not to clean the physical building but the body, mind, and spirit of every person descended from Adam and Eve as stated; "My house (habitation) shall be called a house of prayer (reverence, communication, host), but you have made it a den (cave, hideout, facade) of thieves (deception, destruction, unrighteousness)" - Matt. 21:13; which correlates to; "your body, (mind, and spirit) is the Temple (habitation) of the Holy Spirit (God)" - 1 Cor. 6:19. God demands and Jesus enforces the need for the Sanctification and Holiness of those who desire to be His followers. A church will not be raptured but the Righteous church will be. Jesus’ final purpose was to prepare us for the Rapture!

Spiritual Awakening

Jesus painfully makes this clear that proclaiming Him is not sufficient as stated; "Not everyone who says to Me; “LORD, LORD”; shall enter the Kingdom of Heaven, but he who (only) does the will of My Father in Heaven; (for) many will say to Me (they) have prophesied in (My) name, cast out demons in (My) name, and done many wonders in (My) name; (and) then I will declare to them; “I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!" - Matt. 7:21. There is more to our Salvation than just accepting Jesus. There is a qualification! This is the fourth characteristic required to be saved and to be prepared for the Rapture. As stated by the Father; "because you are lukewarm I spit you out" - Rev. 3:16; and; "to those that overcomes I will give him a white stone, and on the stone a new name" - Rev. 2:17. Many who have been given a boarding pass will not be allowed onto the bus! Just like the world is marginalizing many so will God who only will accept the true followers of Christ as outlined by Jesus' Sermon on the Mount. And to be clear; Jesus starts with compassion in the first three verses of those whose deposition are poor in spirit, mourn, and are meek; but ends with empowered qualifications in the last six of those who hunger for Righteousness, merciful, pure in heart, peacemakers, persecuted, and loyal to Jesus. 

This means regardless of how empathic God is to our plight He will keep His high qualifications and integrity for His Kingdom and Throne. God will never compromise His character simply because we did not have enough Faith to as stated; "for he that comes to God must believe that He is" - Heb. 11:6. That’s a qualification! As individuals in the Body of Christ; it is we who must prepare for the Rapture and not God who prepares us. Otherwise, we would be illegal's trying to cross His borders which only makes us look like criminals even though we have genuine interests in a better life, and place to live. We cannot supplant God's requirements for His Kingdom and the Rapture.

God's requirement to be Raptured is not based on only Jesus but has more stringent scrutiny of our lives. This is the fifth characteristic to be saved and to be prepared for the Rapture. It is the lynchpin to all the other characteristics and is as stated; "where your heart is so is your treasure"; and "God sees the heart" - Matt. 5:21, and 1 Sam. 16:7; respectively. Nothing we do to earn the right of the Rapture can be measured to the genuineness of our heart before God for as stated; "Delight in the LORD and He will give you the desires of your heart" - Ps. 37:4. So critical is this characteristic that it can suspend the Law of Salvation while allowing its benefits as demonstrated by the Centurion, the Gentile woman with the former an obedient servant to authority and the latter a revelator of the Truth; both characteristics of Jesus Christ. And although the Bible doesn’t go further than these individuals’ great Faith; it can be inferred; they became followers of Jesus. Why? Because of their Faith in Him! It’s God’s goal to fill as many buses just as in the Parable of the Wedding Feast - Matt. 22; which indicates no matter one’s previous deposition by their true desire are many welcomed to the wedding feast by the Rapture.

Jesus not only demonstrated but made it clear as stated; "I only do what My Father shows Me to do" - Jn. 5:19. Jesus was the first revival tent that went from town to town to as stated; "to preach the good news and set the captives free" - Lk. 4:18. He did this because it is the first characteristic of being saved, and to be prepared for the Rapture. This is because the Rapture is not something to brace for like a hurricane making landfall but is more like a lightning bolt that strikes randomly but only is felt and seen by its after-effects. That characteristic is freedom from the trappings of the world which is constantly looking for something to put fear on you so you have a defensive stance to be prepared for the worst. The Bible paints a different picture when it comes to current, and future trials, tribulations, and the ultimate destruction of mankind as stated; "so also will the coming of the Son of Man be; (like) two men will be in the field; one will be taken and the other left; (and) two women will be grinding at the mill; one will be taken and the other left." - Matt. 24:39. The metaphor being they were going about their daily life and not hunkered down as a doomsday prepper waiting for the big one to hit. 

When God initiated His Salvation plan of redemption; He did it knowing that many would be caught unaware of the finality of His plan with the return of Jesus and the Rapture of those saved as stated; "(We) shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the LORD in the air" - 1 Tess. 4:17. But He did it also knowing that many in the Body would be obsessed with its final deadline and miss the entire point of Salvation and restoration into the image of Christ and His Kingdom. For if He wanted the church to be obsessed with the date of the Rapture He would have given it in plain sight or allowed it to be deciphered as stated; “But of that Day and Hour no one knows, not even the Angels of Heaven, but My Father only” - Matt. 24:36. God wants the Body to be just as surprised as He wants the world to witness His Son's return not as a lamb to be slaughtered once again but as the Lion of Judah proclaiming total Victory over death. He wants it to be spectacular! 

No matter how one's life is; it only matters the condition of your heart on the eve of the Rapture. We have been told many will fall away, turn their backs on the Word, and seek to become saviors themselves in the last days. And if you are just waiting to escape the tribulation you are already in deep dire straits just like the five foolish virgins in the Parable of the ten virgins; being unprepared for the groom’s appearance which will be unexpected and sudden. This is because although we are to be aware of the season; we are still expected to be as stated; "The light to the world" - Matt. 5:14. Which can be metaphorically mean; "The Hope of His Glory to sinners". You see in the Parable the five wise were prudent, prepared, and provided for the unexpected appearance of the groom. They were also selfish! This is not selfish as in being mean or unkind, but protective for their reward. Everyone has the individual responsibility for the Rapture and if one is not actively as it were; “trimming and maintaining their lamps”; they will be left out to the darkness.

The third characteristic required of being saved and being prepared for the Rapture is your character of being a Christian. A Christ-follower! Jesus is the Word and without Him, there will be no Rapture or for that matter, there would be no Kingdom of God. Jesus stands between and balances the Holy Trinity and by His sacrifice, He now holds and wields in His hands God's judgment on every human being. To put it mildly, as His Body we have to measure up to His standards. We have to have His character! Does this mean weak Christians will not be caught up in the air to meet Jesus? That is an oxymoron, like jumbo shrimp! The real question is what will be the level and type of Faith one has at the instant of the Rapture as stated; "in the twinkling of an eye...we will be transformed" - 1 Cor. 15:52. Many think that this means regardless of our Faith and lack of Righteousness we will all be made into the character of Jesus. If that was the case, everything after His resurrection would be pointless. 

Jesus once resurrected is no longer a mere man of God. He is now the restored Son of God meaning He took back His place between the Father and the Holy Spirit as the Word. This means all things were restored just like before His Earthy birth including all Knowledge that God knows. Jesus knows the exact time of the Rapture! But His will is not as a man but as the Son of God and He awaits the Father's direction for the Rapture. Jesus' prime goal for men continues as it started as stated; "make disciples" - Matt. 28:19. Why? To prepare for the Rapture! It has been His single-minded effort and it ought to be ours. 

Now, if you are depending on the Rapture to take you away from all the travail that is current and is to come. You may be disappointed. For what is explicitly clear is that no one in the Body of Christ can be in that Body if they remain hidden, and avoid the world. You can't be a hermit! Jesus may have been our Savior but He cannot save us without our participation. In essence, what Jesus did was to reignite what God placed in us from the beginning and that is His Spirit as stated; "(God) breathed into his (man’s) nostrils the breath of life" - Gen. 2:7. And without our acceptance of that and its restoration by the Blood we remain but empty vessels just as the husk of the grain. It is not the seed that matters but the life it carries inside it. This is why the farmer sows many seeds because he knows many will not ignite into their purpose. 

This is why the endless debates of whether the Rapture will be Pre-tribulation or Post-tribulation has no value. And here is a news flash! Since God told the serpent that one will come and crush his head; we have been in tribulation ever since. The difference is the intensity of satan's wrath which historically has been several times with the goal of man's destruction and specifically the destruction and politicization of Christianity. All of which has increased in the last few decades. Are we close to the Rapture? Most definitely! But will all in the Body see the Rapture? Definitely not! We will be judged not because we were Raptured but by the lives, we lived as the Body of Christ. 

Flush it Out! - On clouds of white Jesus comes for me!

Someone made a statement years ago that kind of summarizes how the Christian is to be reiterated by Jesus' examples. They said; "It will take Faith to be Raptured". But one isn’t able to practice Faith when the sudden change occurs, which will happen in the Rapture. Faith can only be applied before, during, and after the change. What it implies is as stated; "when the Son of Man comes, will He really find Faith on the Earth" - Lk. 18:8. The Faith not only to live one's life Righteously but also to as Paul states; "run the race with endurance" - Heb. 12:1. Because as a runner in the marathon of life towards the finish line which is the Rapture one has to be single-minded, overcome challenges, remain in focus, and run their best race regardless of what is happening around them. They have to be Faithful to the ultimate goal and journey towards and crossing the finish line! This all depends on your perspective!

Perspective is the second characteristic of being saved, and being prepared for the Rapture. As a member of the Body of Christ, you can never be complacent, ignorant, or unprepared. That means you are always evaluating the present, looking at the future, and learning from the past. The Christian always must have an objective perspective of the world supported by the Word, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit. To be prepared for the long haul as it were by building your strength, stamina, and spirit. Paul paints this picture clearly as stated; "put on the whole armor of God" - Eph. 6:10. Not some but the entire armor! A Roman soldier is never far from his armor and is prepared for the fight on the go. Well; Roman soldiers never run down their enemies but entrench themselves to fight a specific way and this picture of putting the weight of the metal, carrying a heavy shield as well as wielding a broad sword does not match Paul's encouragement to run the race of Salvation. They seemingly are opposite to each other! Because a runner wants to be as light as possible with no baggage. Yet; one cannot finish the race triumphantly without fighting off a few demonic and evil forces along the way. What it indicates is not how fast you get to the finish line by avoiding unpleasant issues or taking shortcuts but is how well you stand and face those unpleasant things and what impact is left along the way to the finish line. In that, we focus on the journey but never lose the perspective of our destiny. Because it is our journey that prepares us for what comes after reaching our destiny. The so-called christian that never takes a stand for Jesus will not be Raptured.

Oct. 10, 2021.

 

Depending on the Rapture.