I. In the opening video, we see another inspiring scene from the Left Behind series. This scene is from the first film, Left Behind: The Movie. Bruce and Rayford have missed the Rapture that has taken their wives and children. Now, they need to ask God to forgive them and help them with what’s to come in the next seven years (from video comments).
II. As the opening video shows, there will be people who will come to saving faith in Christ after the Rapture, after they have been left behind (1 Thes 4:16-17). Notice in the video that one of the men coming to saving faith in Christ, is a “left behind pastor.” Those of us who are born again, and are looking forward to the Rapture of the church, have an awesome opportunity to leave behind, for those who will be left behind, such things as “books, tapes, and written articles,” that will be helpful for them to understand the things of the Tribulation that are ahead of them, and for coming to saving faith in Christ.
III. Key items of instruction that are helpful for those of us, whom are already “saved from the wrath to come” (1 Thessalonians 1:10), are things that relate to the Tribulation, the Kingdom Age (Millennium), and the times which precede the Rapture. Old Testament Jewish prophets used certain words to describe the conditions of the Tribulation and Kingdom Age. On the Day of Pentecost, and closely thereafter, the Apostles used some of those same Jewish prophetic terms as they spoke to Jews. As the message of Christ began being received by Gentiles, the words of the epistles began to speak of conditions on earth that will precede the Tribulation. The important factor to consider in understanding such information, is that of context, as we consider such words as End Times, Last Days, Latter Days, etc.
IV. The Jewish Old Testament prophets spoke of conditions that will be present on earth during the Tribulation and Kingdom Age. All Scripture references that follow come from the New American Standard Bible 2020 Update.
V. The Jewish Old Testaments spoke of the conditions of the Tribulation. Consider the following verses.
Zephaniah 1:14-15 – 630 B.C.
VI. The Jewish Old Testament Prophets spoke of the salvation of Israel from out of the Tribulation. Consider the following verses.
Jeremiah 30:4-10 – 606 B.C. – Notice in verse 7 that this time of Tribulation is called Jacob’s distress, and has no relevance to born-again believers in Christ.
VII. The Jewish Old Testament prophets spoke of the conditions of the Kingdom. As you consider the following verses, it is important to note that “the Kingdom” relates to “a land mass, and relating conditions.” The Kingdom is not something that will be “within you,” (Luke 17:21, KJV), but will be that which will be “in your midst,” (Luke 17:21, NASB). “Thy Kingdom come,” of Matthew 6:10, relates to the coming Kingdom that is promised to the Jews, in which born again Jews and Gentiles will reside, which follows the Tribulation, and is not the spiritual indwelling of the Holy Spirit (Romans 8:11).
A. Isaiah 2:1-4 – 760 B.C.
B. Ezekiel 37:21-25 – 587 B.C.
VIII. Through the Old Testament Scriptures, the Jews were taught about the care, protection, and favor that God promised to them through the Abrahamic Covenant, which would come in the form of “land, seed, and blessing.” The Jews were told of the geographic dimensions of the Kingdom that God promised to them, and that the Covenant is eternal and will be confirmed through the bloodline of Abraham’s Covenant blood line of Isaac and Jacob, and that “Israel” would become the name of Jacob and his descendants. The land of the Abrahamic Covenant extends from the Nile River in Egypt to the Euphrates River in Iraq, and will be confirmed in its fullness during the Kingdom Age, when Christ will rule and reign throughout that Millennium of 1,000 years. (Ryrie Study Bible notes: Genesis 15:18-21; Genesis 17:8; Joshua 23:41-45; 1 Kings 4:21).
A. Genesis 12:1-3 – 2126 B.C. (Covenant of Land, Seed, and Blessing)
B. Genesis 15:5 – 1913 B.C. (God’s Seed Covenant With Abraham)
C. Genesis 15:18-21 – 1913 B.C. (God’s Land Covenant With Abraham)
D. Genesis 17:13 1911 B.C. (The Abrahamic Covenantis Eternal)
“…My covenant shall be in your flesh as an everlasting covenant.”
E. Genesis 26:1-5 – 1800 B.C. (Abrahamic Covenant through Isaac)
F. Genesis 35:9-12 – 1732 B.C. (Abrahamic Covenant through Jacob; now called Israel)
IX. Through the Old Testament Scriptures, the Jews were told of the blessings that will come through the Davidic Covenant.
A. 2 Samuel 7:8-17 – 1042 B.C. (Ryrie Study Bible notes)
1. David would have a son who would succeed him and establish his kingdom (v. 12).
2. David’s son (Solomon), rather than David, would rebuild the Temple (v. 13a).
3. The throne of Solomon’s kingdom would be established forever (v. 13b).
4. Though David’s sins justified chastening, God’s “loving kindness,” steadfast love, would be forever(v. 16).
B. Ryrie added note. The Davidic Covenant did not guarantee uninterrupted rule by David’s family (and in fact, the Babylonian Exile interrupted it), but it did promise that the right to rule would always remain in David’s dynasty. Jesus Christ is the ultimate fulfillment of these promises (Luke 1:31-33) and, although at this present time He is not ruling from the throne of David (Heb. 12:2), at His second coming He will assume this throne.
C. My note. The second coming of Christ occurs at the end of the Tribulation, Mt 24:29-31. “…immediately after the tribulation of those days…all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of the sky with power and great glory…”
D. MacArthur Study Bible note. The second coming of Christ is the culmination of world history, ushering in the millennial reign of Christ (cf. Rev. 20:4).
E. Re: verse 16, David’s “house, kingdom, and throne, … forever,” were also understood eschatologically/messianically. In the New Testament they were explicitly applied to Jesus (Heb 1:8). (New American Commentary, 2 Samuel).
X. Jews of the Old Testament era knew nothing of the Church or the Rapture of the Church, which were a mystery to Old Testament Jews, therefore, there was no Old Testament teaching of either subject (Church or Rapture). Consider the following verses:
A. A mystery explained. “that by revelation there was made known to me the mystery, as I wrote before briefly,” (Ephesians 3:3, 64 A.D.). Ryrie Study Bible note. “A mystery was not something mysterious (in the modern sense) but something unknown until revealed.”
B. The mystery of the Rapture. “51 Behold, I am telling you a mystery; we will not all sleep, but we will all be changed, 52 in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet; for the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed,” (1 Corinthians 15:51-52, 59 A.D.).
C. The mystery of the church. “This mystery is great; but I am speaking with reference to Christ and the church,” (Ephesians 5:32, 64 A.D.).
XI. During the next article, I will discuss the coming event of the catching up of the saints, which is called The Rapture. Additionally, I will explain the differences of the uses of similar terms, such as End Times, Last Days, Latter Days.
XII. Opening Video. Left Behind – The Movie – Bruce and Ray’s Salvation. Jul 13, 2010. Josho456123.
XIII. Study References. Scofield Study Bible. J. Dwight Pentecost: “Things To Come.” C. John F. Walvoord: Commentary on Matthew. Ryrie Stdy Bible. The Moody Bible Commentary. The Bible Knowledge Commentary. Libery Bible Commentary. The New American Commentaries, 1 and 2 Samuel, 1 and 2 Kings.
XIV. Consider Israel.
A. Deuteronomy 14:2 “For you are a holy people to the Lord your God, and the Lord has chosen you to be a people for His personal possession out of all the peoples who are on the face of the earth.”
B. Passover begins at sundown this Saturday, March 27th, and ends at sundown on Sunday, April 4th.
C. “Pray for the peace of Jerusalem” (Psalm 122:6).
D. Closing Video.
1. Most Beautiful Shabbat Video Ever!!!! Shabbat.com.Sep 29, 2014.
2. Filmed at the Klatzko Family Shabbat home in Monsey, NY.
XV. Shabbat Shalom (Sabbath Of Peace).