Wednesday, 21 November 2018

T The Christian Life

How to be ready for the rapture

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There is no one in heaven or on earth who knows the day and the hour when Jesus will come for the rapture, to take His bride away from the earth. No one but Father God. Not even Jesus knows the exact day or hour (Matthew 24:36, Mark 13:32). Anyone who tells you otherwise is a deceiver and doesn’t serve the Kingdom of our God. We truly believe this, because it is the Word of God that tells us. But because of this many no longer dare to watch for the return of Jesus Christ and that is not a good thing.

Jesus clearly said that no one knows the day or the hour, but at the same time He made it clear that we can know the season. So that means that we’re not completely in the dark on this matter. Even more, He instructed us to watch for His return. 

Watch therefore, for you do not know when the master of the house is coming—in the evening, at midnight, at the crowing of the rooster, or in the morning— lest, coming suddenly, he find you sleeping. And what I say to you, I say to all: Watch!
Mark 13:35-37

But what does this mean? That we should drop all our work and watch the heavens all the time? Many have felt paralyzed by all the stories of the return of Jesus. Some because they’re not sure if they will be part of the rapture, others because they feel their work is now useless because He can come at any moment. I deliberately choose not to share all the signs here. That is up to you to figure out. But if your eyes are open, you can clearly see that the moment of His return is so near that it can happen at any moment. Even now, in the next hour, tomorrow etc. But it can also happen in a few months or in a year. We don’t know when exactly. No one does. But I am sure that it won’t take years anymore, looking at all the signs. 

How do we proceed our lives, knowing all of this? By taking our lives seriously. By taking our God given tasks seriously. We don’t know that exact moment, so we should continue the work of God while there is still time. We should follow the example of Jesus Himself.

I must work the works of Him who sent Me while it is day; the night is coming when no one can work. As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.
John 9:4

That means that we continue our lives and everything we do for the Lord, without hesitation and without restraint, but with the full awareness of His upcoming return. Now there is something Jesus said in regard to the timing of the rapture. 

Therefore you also be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.
Matthew 24:44

It will happen at a moment that is so unexpected, that it will come as a snare on all those who dwell on the face of the whole earth. So the point is clearly not how to know the exact day or hour, but to be ready when it will happen. If we would know the day and hour, everyone would have their lives in order at that moment. Even the contemporary scribes and Pharisees. But the rapture is not meant for all people who “call” their selves Christians. It is meant only for those who truly live for Him and whose hearts are completely chasing after Him. 

Now how can we be ready? If you haven’t done this yet, start by taking your relationship with Jesus Christ 100% seriously and make Him the highest priority of your life. If you need to repent of sin, then don’t waste your time and confess your sins to God. He is more than willing to forgive you. But don’t stop there. Your problem is not just your sins, but also the cause of your sins. That was a point that Jesus made very clear. The problem is your heart. 

For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies.
Matthew 15:19

That is a part of you that you can’t change on your own power. You desperately need His help in order to get your heart changed. We all do. For when the heart doesn’t change, the fruits of sin will always come back. Even after many prayers for deliverance. The heart will only change by the power and by the Word of God. Like David, start asking God to create in you a clean heart and to renew a steadfast spirit in you (Psalm 51). If you’re struggling with sin, make this your daily prayer. God is not insensitive for your cry for help. When your desire to get your heart changed is sincere, He will reach out and do it. And that is still just part of the normal Christian life. 

In regard to the rapture and to how to be ready, Jesus gave a very important instruction that only a few people know of these days. That instruction can be found in Luke 21.

Watch therefore, and pray always that you may be counted worthy to escape all these things that will come to pass, and to stand before the Son of Man.
Luke 21:36

This part show us that Jesus is making clear that we are not worthy by default. If we were worthy by default, then there would be no need for such a prayer. I also want to emphasize the part “pray always”. Just like we can’t change our heart, we also can’t make ourselves worthy. God has to do that for us. But in order for us to get there, we need to really search Him for that. We need to realize how desperately we are depended on Him. The more we realize how depended we are on Him, the more serious we will take Him and His Word. And if you think you can’t see that clear enough yet, you can always ask the Holy Spirit to give you a full revelation of it. 

To make it easy for you, here are a few points that are extremely important in your relationship with Christ and to be ready for the rapture:

  • Always approach God with a humble attitude
  • Stay in His Word. Read it. Meditate on it.
  • Ask Him daily to create in you a clean heart and a steadfast spirit
  • Ask Him daily to make you worthy enough to escape and to appear before the Son of Men

The safest place to be is in His Word. That doesn’t mean you have to read the whole Bible in a week, it means that when you read, you read with attention, with the desire to understand what you’re reading. Sometimes that means you read a few verses, through which the Holy Spirit is speaking to you. At other times it may be one or two chapters. The point is that we take the time for it, that we listen listening. That we read with the desire and aim to understand. And if we don’t yet understand, then we ask for the help of the Holy Spirit and we keep on reading and meditating on these same verses until we do understand. 

When will you be ready and worthy enough? I’m not the one to determine when that is or to judge your sincerity. But I can tell you that this has everything to do with the condition of your heart. Jesus Christ Himself will search and judge your heart in order to determine if you are worthy enough. What counts for Him is your sincerity. That means that what you say is in line with what lives inside your heart. And when you fail, which we all do now and then, then don’t cover it up, but bring it into the Light immediately. He already knows. Just get up, admit your sins and continue. Don’t allow failure and sin to stand between you and Jesus. Get rid of it by simply confessing it to Jesus. 

Don’t give up along the way. Keep your eyes focused on Jesus, no matter what happens. He is the One Who created your faith and Who will mature it in you. Stay humble and depended at all times. Jesus has never despised the humble and the weak. But He will resist the prideful and self-righteous people. They are the ones who will be left behind.

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