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What to do if you miss the rapture! (Part 2)

Part 1, in the January Newsletter

Spread the Message of the Kingdom

In thinking about what to do if you miss the Rapture, the overarching theme we should keep in mind is, don’t be discouraged. Don’t be overwhelmed by what seem to be insurmountable problems. Instead, take the offensive and spread the message of the Kingdom.

If you are reading this after the Rapture of the Church, and have done what we suggested in the first part of these writings, you have joined the group of believers described in the Bible as the Tribulation Saints. You are a creature of special privilege, of special responsibility, but particularly, you are to be a harbinger of the Kingdom.

Remember, Christ predicted that the message of the Kingdom would be brought to the very ends of the earth, and then the end would come:

“And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come” (Matt. 24:14).

Christ was not speaking about the message that the Church would bring to the world before the time of the Rapture. Rather, the message of the Gospel of the Kingdom would become the great word of hope during the Tribulation. If you are reading this beyond the moment of the Rapture, you now have the responsibility and great opportunity of spreading the message of the Kingdom to the world!

Pray—For Your Prayers Are Heard

Now, in order to do that, you should keep some important things in mind. First of all, don’t forget to pray, for your prayers are especially heard. More things are wrought by prayer, than this world ever dreams of said Tennyson. Prayer has been important in every age, but during the days of the Tribulation, prayer is going to be particularly significant.

May I suggest something to you that most of us have not thought of but which I think is at least worth considering, about prayer during those days of the Tribulation? In Revelation Chapter 5, we have a remarkable verse:

“And when he had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and four and twenty elders fell down before the Lamb, having every one of them harps, and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of saints” (Rev. 5:8).

So golden bowls full of incense are the prayers of the saints. If you thought that your prayers have gone off into empty air, don’t think that way. Your prayers are solid, real, living, and maybe eternal things. They are put into a golden bowl, which contains what are called “The prayers of saints.”

Now, with that in mind, consider a remarkable passage which begins in the latter part of Revelation Chapter 15, and goes on into Chapter 16. It says this:

“And one of the four living creatures gave unto the seven angels seven golden bowls full of the wrath of God, who lives forever and ever. And the temple was filled with smoke from the glory of God, and from His power; and no man was able to enter into the temple till the seven plagues of the seven angels were fulfilled. And I heard a great voice out of the temple saying to the seven angels, Go your ways, and pour out the bowls of the wrath of God upon the earth. And the first went, and poured out his bowl upon the earth, and there fell a foul and loathsome sore upon the men who had the mark of the beast and upon them which worshiped his image” (Rev. 15:7-16:2).

Could it be that the very bowls which contain the prayers of the saints back in Revelation Chapter 6, are the same bowls that are handled by the four living creatures in Revelation 15 and 16? Could it be that the prayers of the saints become the bowls of the wrath of God, poured out upon a world that is living in a state of rebellion against the Lord? I think this to be a very real possibility.

Therefore, I suggest that your prayers are simply not little words of their own, but they are a part of the instruments of God. They will one day be used to judge the world. In other words, you shall be vindicated. You’ve never lifted a prayer, a word to God, that He doesn’t hear, and out of which He does not produce a result that is really quite amazing.

When we get to Heaven, I am absolutely sure that we will discover that our prayers were of a greater magnitude and impact than we’ve ever suspected. So I say to you, if you are alive during the days of the Tribulation, spend much time in prayer. You will find it to be an absolutely essential commodity. And I promise you that those prayers, seeming so small at the beginning—Lord, help me, because I’m in great trouble—will become an instrument of God’s Divine vengeance before it is all done.

My first advice in this particular part of the discussion: do not forget to pray. You are going to need the help of God, more so than any generation of believers have needed that help in any time in all of the history of the entire world. My prayer is that you will be a person of prayer.

In these days of Grace, we pray for all who witness for Christ and work for the Lord in our present world. We also pray in advance for you. May God help you to be strong and resolute, especially in prayer.

Be a Witness in the Evangelistic Program

One of the truisms of life is that God never does anything apart from a great reason. He has left you in the world, during the Tribulation, for a great reason. You must fulfill the prophecy of Jesus Christ, when He said: “And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come” (Matt. 24:14).

Therefore, our second piece of earnest advice to you, having missed the Rapture, but now believing the Gospel of the Kingdom, is to be a witness in the evangelistic program of Jesus Christ. Your ministry may well be the greatest that the world has ever seen, in all of its history.

The Bible says there will be an innumerable company of people who will be saved during the days of the Tribulation. They are to be instruments in the hands of God, that the world may know of Christ and His power to save. You are one of them!

But be forewarned—there will be an alternative evangelistic program conducted during the Tribulation, and that is the program of the Antichrist. The Antichrist will build his global hegemony on two bases. The first one is political—he will be the political master of the world, as we have already discussed. He will organize an economic system that will be really something.

Secondly, and maybe most importantly, he will build his power on a religious base. He will organize a world religion. So in your witness for the Lord, spreading the Gospel of the Kingdom during the days of the Tribulation, you will face a competitive program.

That has always been the case, has it not? All through history, true believers in Jesus Christ have faced alternative voices. Therefore, their witness for Christ had to be strong, resolute, and courageous. You, more than ever, will face a competitive religious program run by the Antichrist. So let me give you a promise:

“. . . greater is He that is in you, than he that is in the world” (1 John 4:4).

He that is in you is God. He that is in the world is the Devil. The world has the Devil’s program. You have the program that is greater. You can be used of God to produce an absolutely fantastic result, as you work and labor for Christ across the world.

Think of it: God is going to produce a great witness to Himself from witnesses that represent an innumerable company. You are one of those witnesses, and you will have angels to assist you in bringing the Word to the ends of the world.

So, while the days of the Tribulation will be a time of infinitely terrible suffering for the lost people of the world, it will be a time of glorious triumph, fantastic accomplishment, for those who are witnesses for the Lord. Don’t you fail to be one of them, all right?

Don’t Believe Anything Antichrist Promises

A third and most earnest suggestion is, don’t believe anything that the Antichrist promises. Throughout the history of the world, sanctified cynicism has been a good thing. Why? Hold ere this truth before your eyes, that all the world is lies and lies. But particularly during the Tribulation, this will be true. The Bible says:

“And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie: That they all might be damned who believed not the t ruth, but had pleasure i n unrighteousness” (2 Thess 2:11-12).

With the failure of each of his programs, the Antichrist will come up with another, supplanting the first one, with new explanations as to why this new plan should work. He will be the consummate politician. Perhaps, then, it would be redundant to say that he will be the greatest liar the world has ever seen.

His biggest lie will be, I am Christ. I am worthy of your loyalty. Follow me. Take the mark of identification that I will put upon you, and we will bring to pass the dawn of a new age, a bright new world.

Finally, he will come to the place where he blames the opposition to his program for all that is troubling the world. That opposition takes the form of a great witness for God coming out of the city of Jerusalem and the land of Palestine. Israel, and the remaining Judeo-Christian influence in the world, will trouble him to the place where he will say, We must do away with this, and then I can have it my way.

What will he do? Well, the Bible describes this in the second Psalm:

“Why do the nations rage, and the people imagine a vain thing? The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the Lord, and against his anointed, saying, Let us break their bands asunder, and cast away their cords from us. He that sits in the heavens shall laugh: the Lord shall have them in derision (Ps. 2:1-4).

The Antichrist will organize a war against God. He will fancy that if he can do away with Palestine, Israel, and the Jews, he can have it his way. If he can destroy that faith, and the Gospel of the Kingdom, there will be no alternative voice to the lying religion that he has offered to the world. His diabolical religion will permeate everything, reaching to the ends of the earth, but it must be resisted by you! Do not believe anything that the Antichrist promises.

Now, I don’t want to be snide about this, but even we who live in this Day of Grace ought to be very careful about political promises. No one can really succeed as a politician, generally, unless he makes promises that he cannot fulfill, unless he advocates programs that he cannot afford. He knows that the world will forgive him for breaking a promise after he makes it, once the election has taken place.

In a small way, this has been true during the Day of Grace. But it will be true in a much bigger way under the power and signs and lying wonders of the Antichrist. Watch out for lying wonders, superficial proofs of what the Antichrist asserts to be true. There will be many, but they are lies!

Look Ahead—The Kingdom Is Coming Soon

There’s an interest ing statement in the Bible that has always been true, which will be especially true during the days of the Tribulation. If you are in the Tribulation, called upon to live your life under the awful pressures of those days, you should know that you have plenty of reason for hope.

There is a hope that reaches beyond the years, that God gives to His people in every generation. That will be especially true during the Tribulation. In the near future, you will see judgments poured out upon the world in the form of the seals, and the trumpets, and the bowls, and other things. The carnage will approach the point of the fantastic! There will be terrible consequences that will break across the world, so much so, that the people who have been martyred for the witness of Jesus will cry:

“. . .How long, O Lord, holy and true, do You not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth? And white robes were given unto every one of them; and it was said unto them, that they should rest yet for a little season, until their fellowservants also and their brethren, that should be killed as they were, should be fulfilled” (Rev. 6:10-11).

God advises, just a little more time, until others should be martyred for the witness of Jesus. Then, a spectacular event will take place. Christ talked about this. When referring to the Tribulation, He said:

“And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect’s sake those days shall be shortened” (Matt. 24:22).

Shortened by what? How will God cut off the Tribulation and bring this terrible set of events to an end? The Tribulation will end with the glorious return of Jesus Christ. It is the light at the end of the tunnel, and it should give you great hope, particularly if you are reading these words during the days of the Tribulation. You are soon to witness a marvelous event:

“And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and He that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He does judge and make war. His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on His head were many crowns; and He had a name written, that no man knew, but He Himself. And He was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood and His name is called The Word of God. And the armies which were in heaven followed Him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean. And out of His mouth goes a sharp sword, that with it He should smite the nations: and He shall rule them with a rod of iron: and He treads the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. And He has on His vesture and on His thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS” (Rev. 19:11—16).

This is the picture of an event that will be the crowning moment in history. It is the glorious return of Jesus Christ. It is the Second Coming of the King of Kings. So I have a promise for you. If you are still around by the end of the Tribulation, I will get the chance to meet you. I will be part of the army of saints that returns with Jesus Christ. That will be the end of this dreadful period of time called “Jacob’s trouble” (Jer. 30:7).

John gives us the picture of Christ coming back in power and great glory. Believe me, the Christ that you will see at the end of the Tribulation will not be the stranger of Galilee.

He trod in old Judea Life’s pathway long ago The people thronged about Him His saving grace to know He healed the broken hearted He caused the blind to see And still His great heart yearneth In love for even me.

That sweet poem is an accurate picture of Christ during the days of His earthly ministry. But now He comes as King of Kings and Lord of Lords. His vesture is dipped in blood; a sword comes out of His mouth for the judgment of the nations. With Him comes an army. Who is in that army? Well, Jude quotes Enoch, and says:

“. . .Behold, the Lord comes with ten thousands of His saints” (Jude 14).

And who is a saint? Each of us who have believed the Gospel of Jesus Christ are saints of God, hagios, holy ones. Why are we thought of as perfectly holy saints in the sight of God? Answer: positional sanctification, imputed righteousness. The righteousness of Christ becomes ours when we believe the Gospel. We will be part of that Divine army that returns with Jesus Christ.

What will happen then? At the return of Jesus Christ, He will depose the devil. The devil will be cast into the bottomless pit, where he will be kept a prisoner, in chains, for a thousand years.

Christ will totally destroy the power of the Antichrist. The Antichrist and the False Prophet, the man who ran the religious system for the Antichrist, will both be thrown into the lake of fire. There they will be tormented forever and ever, world without end.

Incidentally, they will still be in the lake of fire after 1,000 years, at the end of the Millennium. At that time, the devil will join them in the lake of fire.

Jesus Christ will establish His Kingdom in the world when He comes back again. So look: this is the time for courage. It is the time for patience. It is the time to hold out against the dreadful things of the world, because Christ is coming back, and He will be your deliverer. He will bring to pass an end of the Tribulation and the advent of His glorious Kingdom.

What conclusion should we draw? If you’re reading this during the Day of Grace, believe the Gospel of Jesus Christ and accept Him as your personal Savior while there is still time.

If you haven’t done that in time, and have missed the Rapture, believe and never fail to embrace the Gospel of the Kingdom. Be strong in the Lord, be resolute for Christ. Look for Christ as your returning Messiah, and realize that you have the opportunity to be a witness, an exponent for Him, in one of the most remarkable eras in the history of the universe. We are going to meet; I intend to be in that army when Christ comes back again, and we’ll meet in that glorious hour so as to ever be with the Lord. Don’t miss being a part of God’s great program.

Have You Made Your Choice?

It’s a wonderful thing to be a Christian and to know that you have everlasting life. Especially is that true in times like these. Wouldn’t you like to be a Christian? Wouldn’t you like to know Christ? You can, you know. You can accept Him today and have God’s gift of everlasting life. Perhaps you would like to pray this prayer, receiving Christ; and I promise, God will give you the assurance of salvation:

Heavenly Father, how I thank Thee because Jesus died for my sins on the cross and rose again. I want now to take Him as my personal Savior. I believe in Him. Please come to live within my heart, I pray in Jesus’ Name, Amen.

If you have prayed this prayer during the Day of Grace, you will go in the Rapture and have nothing to fear of the terrible times of which we have spoken. If the Rapture has not yet happened, write to us and share your decision with us, that we may rejoice with you. We have many Bible study materials that will help you as you begin your walk with the Lord.

From the writings of Dave Breese

Destiny Newsletter continued