Sequence Of Prophecy


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Jesus Entering Into Glory

Now, in saying all of that, I want to make another point. Colossians 3: 4 talks about how we will appear with Him in glory when He, Jesus at time of His coming, shall appear in the Rapture. This is different than Christ coming in His glory. Let me explain it.

"When Christ, who is our life, shall appear (in the Rapture), then shall ye...appear with Him in glory (Heaven)." (Col. 3: 4)

This has to be referring to Christians, especially to those believers who are alive when the Rapture happens. They go to Heaven at the time of the Rapture and only come back to earth when the Revelation/Second Coming takes place to reign with Jesus. If Colossians 3: 4 were talking about the Revelation/Second Coming, as some may think, (if this verse, Col. 3: 4, were associated with Matthew 16: 27, 19: 28, etc...), then the believers who are alive at this point, at the time when the Revelation is taking place, will not be appearing with Him in glory (Heaven). They, instead, will be here on earth and will not yet have gone to Heaven. Jesus and His angels will be appearing at that point, as He comes down out of the sky, in the Revelation. Zechariah 14: 5 tells us that "...the Lord my God shall come (return), and all the saints with [Him].". See also Zechariah 14: 9, and Jude 1: 14. The Lord will take the saints (Christians) to be with Him at the time of the Rapture, and then, 7 years later, they will return with Him when the Revelation/Second Coming takes place. So this verse above (Col. 3: 4) cannot be referring to Christ coming in His glory here on earth (Matt. 24: 30, 31, 25: 31). It has to be referring to Him appearing in glory, in Heaven, as Luke 24: 26 and I Timothy 3: 16 do.

"...Ought not Christ to have suffered these things, (die on the cross, etc...), and to enter into His glory (that's Heaven)." (Luke 24: 26) (See also Phil. 4: 19.).

"...God was manifest (revealed) in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory (Heaven)." (I Tim. 3: 16)

It would not make any sense to say that the Christians are raptured at the time of the Second Coming/the Second Advent of Christ. Instead they will previously go up in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air, and on to Heaven. After 7 years those raptured Christians will come back down (Zech. 14: 4 - 5), as the Revelation is taking place (Rev. 19: 11), and as Jesus descends from the sky, and, at that point, at the same time, they will appear with Him on earth when He comes in His glory to set up His kingdom. To appear with Him in glory (in Heaven) and to come with Him in His glory (to reign as King of Kings and Lord of Lords) are separate one from another, and they happen in two different events, the Rapture and the Revelation/Second Coming.

And, in justifying how the dead in Christ will appear with Him (Jesus) in glory, in Heaven, at the time of the Rapture (Col. 3: 4). Paul was not referring to those who were dead and in the grave. Paul was talking to the believers as though the Lord was going to return in Paul's day. Little did he know Jesus' appearing, in the Rapture, would not take place until 2000 years later, more or less. However, the dead in Christ, that is their souls and spirits, will return from Heaven with Jesus (I Thes. 4: 14) at the time of the Rapture (Rev. 4: 1, I Thes. 4: 14, 16) and will rejoin their new glorified resurrected bodies (I Cor. 15: 44, 51 - 54, I Thes. 4: 14). Then they (the dead in Christ) will go back to Heaven with those believers who are still alive at that time (Rev. 4: 1), the Christians that are remaining unto the coming of the Lord (I Thes. 4: 17), who are being raptured (caught up, taken up).

Both the dead (who are in Christ), in their new resurrected bodies, and the living (in Christ), with their new bodies, will be changed in a moment's time when the Rapture occurs. (Read I Cor. 15: 51 - 52. See also I Thes. 4: 13 - 18.).

"When Christ, who is our life, shall appear (in the Rapture), then shall ye also appear with Him in glory (in Heaven)." (Col. 3: 4)

The "also" in that above verse is referring to Jesus appearing with those Christians who had died in Christ. Paul was talking to those Christian believers of his day. Paul, and those whom he ministered to, did not realize that Jesus would not return for a long time. Even so, this still applies to all of those who have died in Christ, including those who lived in Paul's day.


  All Rights Reserved Glen A. Duitman
 

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