Bible Prophecy: The Kingdom & Eternity

BY ZOLA LEVITT

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The Kingdom
This millennium of the Kingdom Age is the true reward of the Church, and it will be quite different from the Church Age we are experiencing now. The social order will be “upside down”: It will be “sophisticated” to be a Christian, foolish to be an unbeliever.

The King Himself shall reign in Jerusalem with us Believers, His Queen.
Jesus took all His teaching from the Old Testament; there was no New Testament at the time. He taught His disciples “the things pertaining to the Kingdom.”

The inspired passages of Isaiah and the other prophets make this magnificent Age of God’s Triumph very clear. Therefore, the New Testament writers assume that their readers understand the Kingdom, so they begin (after the genealogy) with the Sermon on the Mount, teaching both admission to and laws of the Kingdom, and then its joys (the Beatitudes, in Matt. 5, etc.). See Isaiah 11:4–9.

Isaiah 12 contains the most beautiful and concise description of the Kingdom in the whole Bible. The themes of the Kingdom are: the constant company of the Messiah, total triumph of the saints, and justice and mercy throughout the Earth.

Eternity

After the Kingdom and the Thrones of Judgment, Believers live on in eternity.
God will change Heaven, Earth, and Jerusalem—no more seas or water, and
therefore no more life as we now know it. We can sample John’s description of
eternity in Rev. 21:1–7. The very end of the Scriptures, as John describes in Revelation, becomes symbolic and almost incomprehensible (Rev. 21:9ff.).

One notable feature is that there will be no Temple (v. 22). There is no need for further sacrifice, or, in effect, for further worship. Everyone will be at one with God and approach Him directly, as did Adam before the fall.

Another interesting feature of eternity is new light. Light was the first thing God created, but now there will be no need of sun or moon because the glory of God and the Lamb provide the light (Rev. 21:23).
But perhaps the most striking feature of all is that there will be no evil—anywhere. While a certain amount of rebellion occurs even in the Kingdom, eternity will be
utterly free of it (Rev. 21:8, 26–27).
And remember, this is only the beginning! John, after seeing all these things, wrote that the thing to do was pray now for the soon coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. John the Apostle, New Testament saint and member of the Church, awaited the Rapture fervently—and so should we.

The last verses of the Bible provide a more-than-fitting conclusion for this discussion. John’s final prayer must be our ultimate prayer. In view of all he had seen in this stunning Revelation of Jesus Christ, John uttered simply: He which testifieth these things saith, Surely I come quickly. Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen. —Rev. 22:20–21

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A MESSAGE OF HOPE FROM DR. JACK VAN IMPE – THE TIME OF JACOB’S TROUBLE

THE TIME OF JACOB’S TROUBLE

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For nearly two thousand years we have been living in a parenthesis, a prophetic interval, a time “in between.” Daniel’s prophecy in the vision of the seventy weeks called for a period of 490 years when God would deal especially with Israel. When Christ offered Himself as the Prince of Israel, 483 years, or 69 weeks of years, had been fulfilled. When He was rejected and crucified the prophetic clock stopped, not to begin again until the Jews were back in their land and the parenthetical period had ended. During this prophetic interval, sometimes known as the Church Age, both Jews and Gentiles who are born again through faith in Christ become part of the body of Christ or the bride of Christ. The signal that the “in between” time has ended will be the removal of the church (the bride of Christ) from the earth. This great event is described in a number of Bible portions. One of the clearest is 1 Thessalonians 4:13 –18:

But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. 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. Wherefore comfort one another with these words

The event then that ends the Church Age and ushers in the seventieth week of Daniel’s prophecy is the return of Christ for His church. This coming of Christ in the air is known as the Rapture of the church; it involves the resurrection of the Christian dead as well as the exit from earth of all believers living at that time.

With the removal of the church, earth plunges into its most awful hour. Of this time Jesus said, “For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be” (Matthew 24:21). He was speaking of the seven-year period known as the Tribulation, or the Time of Jacob’s Trouble, so named because of Jeremiah’s prophecy: “Alas! for that day is great, so that none is like it: it is even the time of Jacob’s trouble…” (Jeremiah 30:7).

Some believe the church will remain on earth for the Tribulation. There are a number of reasons for rejecting this conclusion.

The return of Christ for His church is a sign less and always imminent event. Even the New Testament writers expected the Lord’s return at any moment: “For our conversation [citizenship] is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ” (Philippians 3:20).

All signs of the Lord’s return have to do with the coming of Christ to set up His Kingdom. They are only indicators of the approaching Rapture because that event precedes the establishment of Christ’s kingdom by seven years. The moment the Tribulation begins, however, a timetable will be evident. Date-setting will be conclusive. During the Tribulation, Christ’s return will no longer be imminent. Therefore, the Rapture of the church must precede the Time of Jacob’s Trouble.

The Tribulation will be a time of wrath: “For the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand?” (Revelation 6:17). And the church is not to be the recipient of wrath. In assuring the Thessalonian Christians that they would not go through the Tribulation, Paul explained: “For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Thessalonians. 5:9).

Wicked as it is, the world is not quite ready for the Tribulation and the Antichrist. The church is not all it ought to be, but the world is better because the church is here. Sin is rampant, but it would be far worse without the presence of the church and its hindering influence to evil: “For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let [hinder], until he be taken out of the way. And then shall that Wicked be revealed…” (2 Thessalonians 2:7,8).

The Holy Spirit, working through Christians, holds back the tide of evil sweeping the world. When His influence in this manner is removed at the Rapture, the world will be ready for the Antichrist and the Tribulation.

The church has three heavenly appointments during the earthly Tribulation.

First, Christians cannot be on earth during the Tribulation because they have important business elsewhere. When the Lord returns for His church, it will be time for the judgment seat of Christ: “And behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be” (Revelation 22:12).

Second, Christians who are living at the time of Christ’s return must have time in the mansions prepared by Jesus as described in John 14:1 — 3. The only time available for the fulfillment of this promise before the Millennium is during the Tribulation.

Third, the marriage supper of the Lamb will take place in heaven during the end of the Tribulation period, according to Revelation 19:9, and the bride of Christ must attend. Following this joyful occasion, those who belong to Christ will return with Him as He comes to set up His kingdom. Since believers must come from heaven to earth at the end of the Tribulation, it is clear that the Rapture must precede that time of trouble.

Finally, it must be remembered that the Tribulation is especially related to Israel. Once this truth is established, all confusion about the time of the Rapture disappears. The return of Christ for His church marks the end of the Church Age, the parenthetical period, and begins the Time of Jacob’s Trouble.

What is the Time of Jacob’s Trouble? Let Daniel describe it: “…there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time…” (Daniel 12:1).

This unprecedented period of tribulation is not to be confused with daily tribulations which all of God’s people pass through. Jesus said: “…In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world” (John 16:33).

Paul had learned to glory in tribulations: “…we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience” (Romans 5:3).

These heartaches, problems, and tribulations are different from the Tribulation. This seven-year period is one of immense suffering for the entire world. It is an era of unthinkable trouble. Nothing in history can be compared to it, nor will there ever be anything equal to it in the future. Chapters 6, 8, 9, 15, and 16 of Revelation describe the Time of Jacob’s Trouble under the headings of seven seals, seven trumpets, and seven vials. Next week we will look at the panorama of human pain that will be experienced by the inhabitants of the earth during the Tribulation.

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His Grace Is Enough

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I’ve been reminded throughout the week that His grace is enough.  I’m reminded that He is not in need of a reminder to come and protect His children from harm.  From the foundation of the world we have been sealed, our names are in His book and we are His.  His arm is not too short and He can be trusted.  His going forth is as certain as the dawn.

This weekend Corpus (Corporate-Body of) Christi (Christ) was  invaded by raging seas, flooding and man-eating predators.  In this case alligators.  Something of a sign of what is coming.

In the midst of the storm, we are reminded of His unfailing love.

He will revive us after two days;
He will raise us up on the third day,
That we may live before Him.
So let us know, let us press on to know the Lord.
His going forth is as certain as the dawn;
And He will come to us like the rain,
Like the spring rain watering the earth.

 

God is our refuge and strength,
A very present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear, though the earth should change
And though the mountains slip into the heart of the sea;
Though its waters roar and foam,
Though the mountains quake at its swelling pride. Selah.

 

‘For the mountains may be removed and the hills may shake, But My lovingkindness will not be removed from you, And My covenant of peace will not be shaken,’ Says the LORD who has compassion on you.

America: The Writing Is On The Wall

America, you wanted a world without God.  You wanted to be your own god.  You wanted to go your own way.  Well you’re about to get what you wanted and you’ll soon discover what it means to lose God’s blessing and protection.

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Days from now a total solar eclipse will cross the entirety of the contiguous United States.  This eclipse appears to be filled with prophetic meaning, which I wrote about several weeks ago.  I noticed that the first major city it crosses is Salem, Oregon, but lo and behold it was recently discovered that this eclipse actually crosses seven towns in the United States called Salem – seven.

Salem was the original biblical name for Jerusalem (Genesis 14:18Hebrews 7:1-2) and to this day it is the shortened version of the name (Psalm 76:2).

Next month the world will witness what could very well be the Great Sign of Revelation 12, which portrays a woman in labor.  Micah 5:3 indicates that this sign signals God’s attention returning to Israel – in other words the Age of Grace or the Church Age is coming to a close because the rapture of God’s children is imminent (Isaiah 26:17-2166:7-11John 14:2-3,  1 Thessalonians 4:16-175:3-41 Corinthians 15:51-52Revelation 3:1012:5).  Is it then any wonder that an eclipse over the most powerful and prosperous Gentile nation on earth is pointing back to Jerusalem and Israel?  This may be the passing of the prophetic baton, as it were. (Click to Site)