Christ's Second Coming Part 6By Pastor Boffey on Sunday, June 2, 2019.
Christ’s Second Coming: When? How? I. Jesus Christ has promised to come again. MAT 24:30; ACT 1:11; HEB 9:28. A. Various things such as resurrection, judgment, rewards, etc. are associated with His coming. B. A correct understanding of the Second Coming should settle the heart. JOH 14:1-3; 1TH 1:9-10. C. A denial of the Second Coming is an open door to hedonism. 1CO 15:32; 2PE 3:3-6. D. A corruption of the Second Coming can unsettle the heart (2TH 2:1-2) and misdirect thought and action. 1. Example: The time of Christ’s coming is not known (MAR 13:32-37; 1TH 5:1-2). Over the years some have presumed to know the time of Christ’s coming, leading others astray and into disillusionment. 2. Example: The nature of Christ’s coming includes bodily resurrection (1TH 4:14-18). Denial of this can overthrow faith. 2TI 2:18. 3. Example: The purpose of Christ’s coming is to end things on earth (2PE 3:10; 1CO 15:23-24). The notion that His coming is the beginning of another season on earth has been the basis for misdirected evangelical and political thought. E. The keys to proper interpretation of all things pertaining to Christ’s Second Coming are: 1. the plain statements of Scripture by their words and grammar rule over the ambiguous or difficult statements of Scripture. Reference texts are not proof texts. 2PE 1:20. 2. the words of Christ and the apostles determine the proper interpretation of all prophetic utterances, including anything predicted by the O.T. 2PE 1:19; 1JO 4:6. II. Among professing Christians, there are various schools of thought relative to the Second Coming and associated events. Here is a summary of some: A. Amillennialism (sometimes called interadventual millennialism, present millennialism or realized millennialism) affirms that Christ co-reigns with His saints in the church throughout the entire period between the First and Second Comings. His Second Coming will be personal for perfecting the salvation of His elect, for the destruction of the present heavens and earth, for universal judgement, and the creation of a new heavens and earth. B. Preterism affirms that the Second Coming occurred spiritually/figuratively in 70 A.D. All prophecy about Christ’s coming and future resurrection has been fulfilled. We have been in the new heavens and earth since then. C. Postmillennialism affirms a personal return of Christ after a millennium of gospel domination of this world that produces maximum human peace and potential, a golden age. At the end of this millennium, Satan will be loosed to stir up trouble and Christ then returns in judgement. The resurrection occurs and the new heavens and earth created. D. Historic Premillennialism affirms a present spiritual kingdom of Christ which ends in great apostasy and tribulation. Christ then personally returns to consummate His kingdom visibly, resurrect the righteous and establish a calendrical millennium: a golden age of world government on earth during which Satan is bound. Satan will be loosed at the end of the millennium to foment a massive rebellion which Christ will terminate in final judgment and a second resurrection. After this will be the creation of a new heavens and earth. E. Dispensationalism is a relatively new form of premillennialism. It bears similarities with historic premillennialism but it affirms that Christ returns in two stages (invisible, then visible) to set up a golden age world government for a calendrical millennium on earth which will end with Satan’s loosing and subsequent judgement. This system, though, Christ’s Second Coming: When? How? 4-7-19 Page 1 differs from historic premillennialism in many respects, having its own unique twists. III. As touching world government of a carnal, political nature, Jesus Christ repulsed the notion. A. He rejected it when Satan offered it to Him. MAT 4:8-10. B. He hid from intentions to make Him an earthly king. JOH 6:15. C. He spoke of the kingdom of God in contra-political terms. LUK 17:20-21. D. He said His kingdom was not of this world. JOH 18:36. E. He left us with a warning that all such world government attempts are of Satan. REV 17:10-11. 1. Rome was the sixth world government, preceded by Egypt, Assyria, Babylon, Medo-Persia and Greece. 2. In the days of the Roman Empire, God smashed the world government system apart by His own kingdom. DAN 2:44. 3. Ironically, premillennialism (particularly dispensational premillennialism) affirms that the eighth satanic kingdom is its messianic world government. a. It affirms that Satan will set up an Antichrist world government (which would be # 7). b. It then affirms that a messiah will overthrow that system and set up his own world government (which would be # 8). c. Many Christians (who should be the foremost opponents of political world government) are, wittingly or unwittingly, providing the spiritual and political grease to skid the eighth into place. IV. Here is a summary of dispensational eschatology (the department of theological science concerned with ‘the four last things: death, judgement, heaven, and hell’.): A. There are seven arbitrary dispensations (“a period of time during which man is tested in respect of obedience to some specific revelation of the will of God” [Scofield Reference Bible]). They are often distinquished as: innocency, conscience, human government, promise, law, grace, and the kingdom. B. The true promised seed whom God told Abraham should spring from him and be blessed above others to receive the Abrahamic promises are natural Israel. C. The Church is not the true Israel nor does the Christian inherit “distinctive Jewish promises” of a land, king and kingdom. 1. The gospel of grace and the gospel of the kingdom are not the same. 2. The gospel of grace pertains to the church. 3. The gospel of the kingdom pertains to natural/national Israel and was discontinued after the Jewish rejection of Messiah. 4. The gospel of the kingdom therefore anticipates a future Jewish messianic reign. D. Natural Israel awaits its greatest exaltation as God's earthly people. E. National Israel has never yet possessed the whole land of Palestine according to the Abrahamic covenant. Thus, those promises await fulfilment in a future kingdom-age. 1. O.T. promises of Israel repossessing the land are relegated to the future kingdom age. 2. The restoration of Judah and Jerusalem following the Babylonian captivity are not to be construed as the fulfilment of the restoration promises. F. The kingdom prophesied by John and Jesus as being “at hand” was postponed until a future time. G. The Church is a mystery dispensation which is only parenthetical and typical of God's true kingdom yet to appear. The church age is an interruption of prophecy, not a fulfilment of Christ’s Second Coming: When? How? 4-7-19 Page 2 it. H. The throne of David is presently unoccupied and will not be occupied until Christ returns in glory to reign on the earth. 1. Christ is not the King of the church, but the Head of the church. 2. Christ is (the coming) King of the Jews. I. Christ returns in two stages: the Rapture (an invisible approach), and years later the Revelation (a visible approach). J. Christ will return to secretly rapture the Church out of the world, and return again seven years later to establish the Millennial kingdom. This is known as the pre-tribulation rapture. 1. After the rapture a Jewish remnant will take the place of the church as God’s agent on earth for the conversion of Israel and the Gentiles. 2. Between those events, the Jewish temple will be rebuilt and animal sacrifices will be restored under a covenant that natural Israel will make with Antichrist. 3. Antichrist will break his covenant with Israel halfway through the seven years and great tribulation ensues. This is the tribulation prophesied by Daniel, Jeremiah and Christ (Olivet Discourse) and is the “...time of Jacob's trouble...” (JER 30:7). 4. Christ returns with the raptured saints, resurrects the tribulation period martyrs, the battle of Armageddon occurs, the nations judged, Antichrist destroyed, Satan bound, Israel restored to Palestine fully and the Millennial Kingdom commences. K. With the establishment of the Jewish Millennial Kingdom, the temple will (again) be rebuilt and animal sacrifices made. Christ shall personally rule from the Davidic throne in earthly Jerusalem over all nations. Humanity will enjoy its golden age. L. At the end of the Millennium, Satan will be loosed to deceive a huge confederacy of nations to overthrow the kingdom. 1. Christ will quash the rebellion. 2. The wicked dead will be resurrected. 3. The judgment of the wicked men and angels, and their destruction with the devil in the lake of fire ends earth history. 4. The new heavens and new earth begin. V. Here is a summary of what we believe about Christ’s advents and associated issues. A. Jesus Christ established the prophesied kingdom of God at His first advent: the church, which is what the O.T. prophets spoke of, will endure forever, and is God’s true program. Elect Gentiles by Christ are made partakers of God’s covenant promises to His Israel. The N.T. makes clear that many O.T. prophecies of Israel and the kingdom are fulfilled spiritually, not naturally. B. Jesus Christ presently reigns on the throne of David in heaven by virtue of His death, burial, resurrection and ascension to glory. Church saints reign with Him on earth until His Second Coming. This is the “millennium” of REV 20 during which Satan is bound, yet sin and sinners coexist with the saints. C. Jesus Christ will return once to resurrect all the dead, perfect all the elect in resurrection glory, judge and destroy Satan, Satan’s cohorts, the unsaved and the earth itself. This return will be visible, audible, tangible and universally known (nothing secret), and Christ will form a new heaven and new earth free of sin and corruption. D. The golden age (if it can be so called) is the new heaven and new earth in the presence of God for eternity. E. The Olivet Discourse (MAT 24; MAR 13; LUK 21) prophesies of two distinct events: the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 A.D. for which there would be advance markers, and the Christ’s Second Coming: When? How? 4-7-19 Page 3 Second Coming of Christ in final judgment for which there will be no markers. The “great tribulation” (MAT 24:21) came upon the generation to which Jesus spoke. VI. Following will be an examination of certain commonly affirmed pillars of Dispensational Premillennialism (including the pre-tribulation rapture theory). A. The footnotes of the Scofield Reference Bible (SRB) are the standard presentation of the theory but are not the exclusive nor the universal beliefs of the theory’s supporters. B. Dispensationalism interprets Scripture through an artificial template that is more important to the dispensationalist than the words, grammar and logic of Scripture. That template consists of a series of faulty premises and it overlooks or dismisses information which condemns those faulty premises. C. A word to the wise: contending with an ardent dispensationalist will probably be like catching a feather with an air bellows: every puff of truth you make will only relocate the feather. D. Another word to the wise: when contending for Christ, do not let the opponent bury his position(s) with his reasons for his position(s). Demand a simple, clear statement of the position(s), not all the reasons. VII. Dispensationalism affirms that Jesus Christ came to offer a natural, political kingdom of God to Israel but they rejected and crucified Christ so the kingdom offer was withdrawn and set aside until a future dispensation (the millennial kingdom age near the end of time). In other words, the crucifixion only happened because Israel rejected the offered kingdom. A. The converse of this demands that if the Jews had received Christ as their Davidic king, the cross would never have occurred. 1. The prophesied kingdom was to last forever (ISA 9:7: LUK 1:32-33) and its King likewise last forever. PSA 89:35-36; JOH 12:34. 2. Where would the cross ever come into play? If God had ordained that the Jews should receive the kingdom offer, their obedience to that ordinance would forever forbid the cross: Moses’ Law and the temple system would have continued. 3. This implies that men could be saved by Law and animal sacrifice (which would have continued under the wonderful kingdom order). This conveniently takes away the offense of the cross for the Jews. 1CO 1:23. B. An earthly, political kingdom of God with a Davidic king was what the carnal Jews wanted. If that was the kind of kingdom that Jesus was offering them, they would have received Him and it. JOH 5:43. C. If Jesus Christ was indeed intent on establishing himself as an earthly king, it would have been an act of insurrection against Rome. Dispensationalism justifies the crucifixion. D. Jesus Christ did not come to offer them the kingdom of God but to take it away from them. MAT 21:43. E. NOTE: Dispensationalism builds its straw house from the O.T. Practically all texts upon which the claim is based that the Jews are to return to their own land and enjoy special privileges are taken from the O.T. and (errantly) applied to a future state. 1. Their theory finds little straw in the N.T. The light is too bright and blinds them. 2. For example, Paul dedicates ROM 9-11 to the future of the Jews but never mentions a future Jewish Messianic superstate in Canaan. 3. Paul instead prayed for their conversion to his gospel. ROM 10:1-2. VIII. Dispensationalists commonly affirm that it is wrong to assign a spiritual fulfilment to O.T. prophecies. Those prophecies are to be understood literally, not spiritually: Israel must always Christ’s Second Coming: When? How? 4-7-19 Page 4 mean Israel (never the church); Zion must always mean earthly Zion (never heaven); Jerusalem must always mean earthly Jerusalem (never heavenly Jerusalem), etc. A. Literal v. spiritual is a false distinction. The issue is whether a prophecy is fulfilled in a natural sense or a spiritual sense. 1. There is literally a spiritual heavenly Jerusalem, Zion, Canaan. HEB 12:22; 11:10, 16. 2. There is literally a spiritual Israel and spiritual seed of Abraham. ROM 9:6-8; GAL 3:29; 6:16. B. Christ and the apostles commonly assigned spiritual fulfilments to O.T. prophecies. 1. Christ taught that John the Baptist was the prophesied Elijah. MAL 4:5-6 c/w MAT 17:10-13 c/w MAR 9:13. a. indeed: In actual fact, in reality, in truth; really, truly, assuredly, positively. b. Scofield denied this (SRB, p. 1023). Who is right: Christ or Scofield? 2. James declared that the rebuilding of David’s tabernacle (AMO 9:11-12) referred to the gathering in of Gentiles to the church. ACT 15:14-17. a. Scofield contrarily said that this passage refers to the future gathering in of Israel (to her expected national glory in the kingdom age to come)! (SRB, pp. 1169-1170) b. Who is right: the Holy Spirit or Scofield? IX. Dispensationalism affirms that Israel never completely possessed the promised land; hence, that will be fulfilled in the future kingdom age when Christ personally rules from David’s throne in earthly Jerusalem. (SRB, pp. 250, 1206) A. God promised Abraham and his seed a Canaan land for an inheritance. GEN 15:18-21; 17:8. B. Natural Israel DID possess all the land in fulfilment of the Abrahamic covenant. JOS 11:23; 21:43-45; 23:14 c/w NEH 9:7-8. C. Who is right: the Holy Spirit or Scofield? X. Dispensationalism denies that Jesus Christ is presently on the throne of David. They say Christ will one day yet sit on David’s throne on earth to fulfil 2SAM 7:12-16; PSA 132:11. (SRB, pp. 362, 990, 1334, etc.) A. Peter taught that Christ is on David’s throne because of His resurrection. ACT 2:25-36. B. Paul taught (ACT 13:32-34) that Christ’s resurrection fulfilled PSA 2:6-7. C. The Messianic throne of David was to be established in heaven, not earth. PSA 89:35-37. D. Christ is the head of the church (COL 1:18) and Head = King. 1SAM 15:17; ISA 7:1, 8-9. E. Who is right: the Holy Spirit or Scofield? XI. Dispensationalism denies that Jesus Christ at His first advent executed judgment and justice in fulfilment of JER 23:5-6, so this must only refer to the supposed future Jewish millennium. A. Contrast this with JOH 5:30; 12:31; 9:39. B. Who is right: Jesus Christ or Scofield? XII. Dispensationalism draws a distinction between “kingdom of heaven” and “kingdom of God.” Scofield deems the kingdom of heaven (a phrase unique to what they call Matthew’s Jewish gospel) to be the Jewish, Messianic, Davidic superstate that should have begun at Christ’s first advent. (SRB, pp. 996, 1003) A. “Kingdom of heaven” pertains to the past (when it was offered to the Jews but withdrawn upon their rejection of it) and the future (the Jewish millennium). It is “...Messianic, Christ’s Second Coming: When? How? 4-7-19 Page 5 mediatorial, and Davidic...,” “...the Messianic earth rule of Jesus Christ...” but also has “...to do with the sphere of Christian profession during this age.” B. “Kingdom of God” is defined as “...universal, including all moral intelligences willingly subject to the will of God, whether angels, the Church, or saints of past or future dispensations...” C. This distinction was made because it is obvious that the kingdom of God came in fulfilment of DAN 2:44 (c/w LUK 16:16), which opposes a “postponed kingdom” theory. 1. Such a distinction (if true) “might” account for the fact that after the ascension of Christ, the disciples preached “the kingdom of God” for the present church age. ACT 8:12; 28:23, 31. 2. But it would not account for the utter failure of the rest of the N.T. to refer to the future proclamation of “the kingdom of heaven.” D. DAN 2:44 said, “And in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom...” 1. This would obviously be the kingdom of the God of heaven. 2. The “ark of the covenant of the LORD” is the “ark of the covenant” and the “ark of the LORD” (JOS 6:6-8), speaking of the same singular ark. 3. Making silly distinctions is hardly “rightly dividing the word of truth.” E. Scripture uses “kingdom of God” and “kingdom of heaven” synonymously. MAT 19:23-24. F. Matthew’s supposedly Jewish gospel where “kingdom of heaven” uniquely appears has a conspicuous amount of “church truth” in it and commanded to be taught. MAT 28:19-20. 1. The apostles were to preach the kingdom of heaven. MAT 10:5-7. a. The apostolate is a church office. 1CO 12:28. b. How could the apostles instruct the church by the parables of the kingdom of heaven in Matthew if they don’t even have direct relevance to the church? c. Where did the apostles ever preach the kingdom of heaven to the church, telling the saints that the church is only an interruption to God’s plans for Israel? 2. MAT 16:18-19 is the declaration of the building of the church for which Peter was given the keys of the kingdom of heaven. Why didn’t Jesus give Peter the keys of the kingdom of God instead? 3. MAT 18:15-18 is clearly instruction for life in the church. G. Who is right: the Holy Spirit or Scofield? XIII. Dispensationalism affirms that the church was not in O.T. prophecy: “The church, corporately, is not in the O.T. prophecy.” (SRB, pp. 975, 711) A. They maintain that the N.T. church is a “mystery-form of the kingdom” (SRB, p. 998) that God inserted as a parenthesis (the “church age,” “the age of grace”) until the Rapture that restarts the earthly Jewish kingdom aspirations which culminate in the Millennium where Moses’ Law and temple sacrifices, etc. will be enforced by Messiah’s government. 1. The O.T. prophets did prophesy of the church. PSA 22:22 c/w HEB 2:12. a. Joel prophesied of the Spirit’s indwelling of the church. ACT 2:16-17. b. Moses and the prophets spoke of the gathering in of Gentiles in the church. ACT 15:14-15; ROM 15:8-12. c. Peter preached that the prophets spoke of “...these days” (ACT 3:24). d. Paul preached what Moses and the prophets declared. ACT 26:22-23. (1) They called Paul’s doctrine heresy. ACT 24:14-15. (2) Paul could have saved his skin by telling them, “God’s program is Christ’s Second Coming: When? How? 4-7-19 Page 6 still a Jewish kingdom: the church age is an interruption about which Moses and the prophets were ignorant.” But he didn’t. 2. The O.T. prophets prophesied that saving grace through the cross was the end of faith, not an earthly kingdom. 1PE 1:9-12. B. The church will NOT be set aside in a future age. EPH 3:21. C. It was Moses and the Law system that was the temporary parenthesis, not the church. GAL 3:19, 24-25; HEB 9:10. 1. Paul spoke of that system as weak and beggarly. GAL 4:9-10. 2. It was unprofitable and perfected nothing. HEB 7:18-19. 3. It was the ministration of condemnation and death. 2CO 3:7-9. 4. It was abolished by a N.T. which can never be changed. 2CO 3:13; HEB 9:15-17. D. Who is right: the Holy Spirit or Scofield? XIV. Dispensationalism makes much of a theory of a post-crucifixion return of Israel to the land while trivializing the great return to the land after the Babylonian captivity. A. Scofield considered Jeremiah’s prophecies of return to be focused on Israel “in the last days,” i.e., at the end of the gospel church age. (SRB, pp. 795, 804-805) 1. The Holy Spirit says that Jeremiah’s words about return were fulfilled in the return from Babylon. EZR 1:1-4. 2. Who is right: the Holy Spirit or Scofield? B. Scofield downplayed the significance of the post-Babylon “return and rebuild” effort: “The restoration here foretold is not to be confounded with the return of a feeble remnant under Ezra, Nehemiah, and Zerubbabel at the end of the 70 years...” (SRB, p. 795 c/w p. 529) 1. Scofield concurred with the enemy’s assessment of that effort. NEH 4:2. 2. Zechariah (a prophet during that effort) countered those who look down on that program. ZEC 4:10. C. NOTE: All promises of return to the land are in the O.T. and pertained to that Sinaitic covenant which gave them an inherited land conditioned upon their obedience. 1. There are NO further promises of return after the return from Babylon. 2. Israel and Judah are under the New Covenant/Testament. JER 31:31; HEB 8:10-13. 3. Unless Jesus writes another testament and dies again (not going to happen!), the only way into favor with God and His promises for Jews is according to ACT 2:38-39. XV. Dispensationalism affirms that the second coming of Christ will be in two stages: the rapture, and later, the revelation. A. The rapture: Christ will return secretly at the conclusion of this present age (the church age) and the church will be raptured out of the world. All saints past and present will be resurrected and caught up. The church will be with Christ in heaven for seven years. During this time, believers will be judged according to their works and rewarded. Also during this time the world will be going through the “great tribulation” under the reign of the antichrist / man of sin. There will be a remnant of converted Jews who will be Christ's witnesses during this period. 1. The rapture is the “day of Christ.” 2. It is related to the reward and blessing of the saints at Christ's coming. B. The revelation: Christ will return visibly with His saints at the conclusion of the tribulation period. The righteous who died during this tribulation period will then be resurrected. The Christ’s Second Coming: When? How? 4-7-19 Page 7 antichrist government will be overthrown and the beast and the false prophet will be cast into the lake of fire. Christ will bind Satan and will establish His kingdom and reign on the earth for 1000 years. At the end of this millennium, Satan will be loosed for a little season and will gather the nations against the camp of the saints. Satan will then be hurled into the lake of fire at which time will be the final judgment. The wicked dead will be resurrected. Earth and heaven will pass away. The wicked will be cast into the lake of fire. The new heaven and the new earth will be ushered in. 1. The revelation is the “day of the Lord.” 2. It is related to judgment. C. The day of Christ IS the day of the Lord. 1CO 1:8. 1. Jesus is both Lord AND Christ. LUK 2:11; ACT 2:36. 2. Dr. Scofield corrected God rather than his theory at 2TH 2:2, where Paul says the day of Christ (the rapture) comes AFTER the revelation of the man of sin (contrary to dispensational theory): “The theme of Second Thessalonians is, unfortunately, obscured by a mistranslation in the A.V. of 2.2, where “day of Christ is at hand” (1 Co.1:8, note) should be, “day of the LORD is now present...” (SRB, p. 1271) 3. When someone takes those kind of liberties with God's word, his case is obviously desperate. JOB 40:8. D. Mind that dispensationalism’s theory is setting forth two returns of Christ and three bodily resurrections: the church at the rapture, tribulation martyrs at the revelation, the wicked dead at the end of the millennium. It also affirms that death continues after the rapture/resurrection of the church. XVI. Jesus will return as he was seen departing. ACT 1:11. A. He will come bodily and visibly. It will not be secret. B. He was not seen departing in two stages. The theory of Christ returning in two stages is really setting forth a second and third coming of Christ. Scripture knows nothing of a third coming. C. If dispensationalism is correct, why even call Christ's return the Second Coming? Why not say that His first advent was just the first stage of a three-stage coming? D. The coming of Christ for His saints will be visible to all and not secret. MAT 24:26-27, 30-31. 1. This trumpet has to be the same as the trumpet sounded at the rapture because that one is the last trump. 1CO 15:52. 2. The trumpet of MAT 24:31 that heralds the gathering of the elect is obviously the same as the one of 1TH 4:16. 3. The trumpet of the Lord is not secret, but VERY discernible. HEB 12:18-21. 4. If God had meant to convey the idea that His coming for the saints at the rapture would be noiseless and secret, He certainly selected a poor choice of terms to describe it. 1TH 4:16. E. Dispensationalism thinks that the “coming as a thief” verses like REV 3:3 are referring to the manner of Christ’s coming but they are rather referring to the time of Christ’s coming: a thief doesn’t write you a letter telling you when he is going to show up. 1. (MAT 24:36) But of that DAY AND HOUR knoweth no man... 2. (MAT 24:42) ...for ye know not what HOUR... 3. (MAT 24:43) ...had known in what WATCH the thief would come... 4. (MAT 24:44) ...for in such an HOUR as ye think not... 5. (MAT 24:50) ...shall come in a DAY when he looketh not... 6. (REV 3:3) ...thou shalt not know what HOUR I will come... Christ’s Second Coming: When? How? 4-7-19 Page 8 F. Scripture’s teaching is that the coming day of the Lord Jesus Christ to appear for the resurrection of the saints and the judgement of the earth is not known (MAR 13:32; 2PE 3:4-14). But if millions are suddenly resurrected and raptured away, would this not be an obvious starting of a clock from which 7 years could be definitely measured to the “appearing” and then another 1000 years to the judgement? G. The APPEARING of Christ is the hope of the church (TIT 2:13). If the real hope of the church is a secret rapture that occurs seven years before that, what does this verse mean? 1. It is at the APPEARING of Christ that the church is raptured and the saints given glorified bodies, not seven years prior. COL 3:4; 1JO 3:2. 2. It is at the APPEARING of Christ that the saints shall receive their reward, not seven years prior. 2TI 4:8; 1PE 5:4. 3. It is at the APPEARING of Christ that BOTH the quick and dead are judged--there is no seven year or 1007 year interval between them. 2TI 4:1. 4. If the true hope of the church is a secret rapture seven years before the REVELATION or APPEARING of Christ, why does Peter exhort Christians to stedfastness unto the end at the REVELATION? 1PE 1:7, 13. H. Dispensationalism ironically ends up thinking that the manner of Christ’s coming will be secret and the time of Christ’s coming known. 1. This is the exact opposite of what Scripture declares. 2. Who is right: the Holy Spirit or Scofield? XVII. Christ will resurrect all the saints AND judge the wicked at the LAST day. JOH 6:39-40, 44, 54; 12:48. A. There is no interval of 1007 years between the resurrection of the saints and the resurrection and judgment of the wicked. B. MAT 25:31-46 places the gathering together and rewarding of the elect at the same time as the gathering and judgment of the wicked. C. 2TH 1:6-10; 2:1 places both the rapture and reward of the saints AND the judgment of the wicked at the revelation or appearing of Christ. D. When Christ returns, destruction falls upon the wicked THE SAME DAY that the righteous are raptured out, not 7 or 1007 years later. LUK 17:26-27 c/w GEN 7:11-13; LUK 17:28-30. E. The coming of Christ will be LIKE it was in the days of Noah and Lot, where there were NO survivors of the intended destruction following the removal of the righteous. How does this square with the idea that there will still be opposition to contend with after the rapture of the saints? F. The righteous and the wicked grow together until the time of the harvest, which is THE END OF THE WORLD. MAT 13:24-30, 37-43, 47-48. G. Scripture knows nothing of multiple future resurrections. There is only one bodily resurrection which includes righteous and wicked. JOH 5:28-29; ACT 24:15. H. The rapture/resurrection of the church marks the end of death and the catching out of this world of the kingdom (1CO 15:23-26, 52-54). How does this square with the notion that death will continue during the seven-year tribulation and that the kingdom won’t be realized on earth until the end of the tribulation? I. If saints of both testaments are to be resurrected at the rapture, this would include David. 1. David would be with the Lord during the tribulation and return with Christ when He appears to take David’s throne and set up the supposed millennial kingdom. 2. But the prophecy of 2SAM 7:12-13 said that David would be dead and buried when Christ would establish the Davidic throne and kingdom. Christ’s Second Coming: When? How? 4-7-19 Page 9 3. David was indeed dead and buried when the real enthronement and establishing of the Davidic Messianic monarchy occurred. ACT 2:29-36. J. Who is right: the Holy Spirit or Scofield? XVIII. Basically, Dr. Scofield et.al. are implying that Israel's hope is a future earthly exaltation over a world at peace. A. Israel does have a hope consonant with the appearing of Jesus Christ. 1PE 1:13. B. But Israel's hope is the resurrection and change of the body, not some earthly superstate with Mosaic law and temple sacrifices. ACT 28:20; 24:14-15; 26:6-8; 1JO 3:2-3; 1PE 1:3-4. C. Dispensationalists sometimes accuse Bible-believers of “robbing Israel of its promises” because they believe that O.T. prophecies of the kingdom are fulfilled in the church and the new heavens and earth. But it is the dispensationalist who is robbing Israel by promoting a false substitute for fullness in Christ in the church and a resurrection unto a new heaven and earth! D. The vain hopes of a millennium of secure tranquility are going to be interrupted. 1TH 5:3. XIX. What are God’s plans for natural Israel/the Jews? A. Only the elect children of God among them are the seed who inherit God’s eternal promises of mercy and grace. ROM 9:6-16 c/w 1PE 1:2. B. This elect group is only a remnant. ROM 9:27; 11:1-6. C. The rest are non-elect children of the devil (JOH 8:37-44) even as all Gentile non-elect are children of the devil, and they are permanently blinded to the truth of Christ and the kingdom of God. ROM 11:7-10. 1. They are as Ishmael: fleshly descendants of Abraham who are not heirs of eternal promise nor of gospel kingdom promise. GAL 4:21-31. 2. Their destination is as Sodom and Gomorrah. ROM 9:29 c/w JUDE 1:7. D. Of the elect remnant of Israel there are two groups: 1. those like the apostles and early church members who abide by faith in Christ and have a place in His kingdom, the church. a. The believing Jews scattered from Judea before 70 A.D. because of the warning of Christ. LUK 21:20-21. b. We know relatively little about them after this point in history. 2. those who through unbelief were cut out of God’s earthly kingdom and benefits of the Spirit of Promise unique to the gospel church. ROM 11:11-22. a. Their season of blindness lasts “...until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in” (ROM 11:25). b. Some may come to faith in Christ and be joined into kingdom blessings again. ROM 11:23-24; 2CO 3:14-16 c/w ROM 10:1-4. c. God’s word to Jews remains the same as ACT 2:38-41; 3:19. d. Their election to life is not thwarted by their unbelief (ROM 11:26-29) but their temporal peace, happiness and spiritual well-being are thus thwarted. E. The non-elect Jew was left with a “consolation prize” as a judgment: wealth and finance. ROM 11:9. 1. REV 6:1-6 sets forth a series of forces that culminate in great day of the Lamb’s wrath. REV 16:16-17. a. The first force is Jesus Christ in power; He goes with His soldiers. v. 2 c/w REV 19:11-13 c/w MAT 28:18-20. b. The second force is war and conflict: the gospel generates strife from Christ’s Second Coming: When? How? 4-7-19 Page 10 without and within the camp of the saints (the church). MAT 10:16-25 c/w ACT 15:1-2; ROM 16:17. c. The third force is finance: Satan competes against the power of the gospel with the power of finance and wealth’s corrupting influence. vs. 5-6 c/w MAT 6:19-33; 2PE 2:1-3, 14-15. 2. Compare the balances of REV 6:5 with HOS 12:7; AMO 8:4-6; MIC 6:10-12. a. These passages all describe the apostate Jew as oppressing others by means of deceitful balances. c/w PRO 11:1. b. There is not a just correlation between the amount of goods being sold and the price being fixed. c. The horse in REV 6:5 is black, the contrast of the white horse of v. 2. (1) If the power of the white horse of Christ and the gospel is by light and truth, the power of the black horse is by darkness and deception. (2) Black is the color of darkness and darkness is associated with deception. EPH 4:17-18. (3) The former gains souls by honesty; the latter destroys souls to gain by dishonesty. EZE 22:13, 27; MAT 23:14 ct/w 2CO 4:2. (4) Hence, the vision of the third seal (REV 6:5-6) relates to the balances of deceit mentioned in the above passages. 3. Apostate Jews have been foremost in the advancement of the kingdom of finance. a. REV 6:5-6 sets forth what has been borne out in history: from Jewry came the influence of the gospel and also the influence of finance. b. The dispersion into the world of these two forces has mightily influenced the course of world events. 4. The non-elect, unbelieving Jews have leaders in the banking industry and this has been a stumblingblock for them. a. The Greek word translated “table” in ROM 11:9 is “trapeza,” meaning a table or stool, usually for food (fig. a meal); also a counter for money (fig. a broker’s office for loans at interest). “Trapeza” is translated “bank” in LUK 19:23. b. Christ twice overthrew the tables (trapeza) of the Jewish moneychangers. JOH 2:13-16; MAR 11:15-18. 5. Zechariah saw the resemblance of apostate Israel throughout the earth as an ephah, a measure for commerce. ZEC 5:5-6. 6. ISA 2 prophesied of both groups of Jews. a. ISA 2:1-5 speaks of the going forth of the gospel from the elect, believing Jews. b. ISA 2:6-9 describes the rich unbelieving Jews. (1) They had adopted the ways of eastern pagan religions, the influence of which is reflected in Talmudic Judaism. (2) There is no end of their treasures. 7. The believing Jew, sent forth by Christ and dispersed by persecution, has been the means for the going forth of the white horse of the gospel and Christ’s kingdom. 8. The unbelieving Jew, dispersed by God’s judgment, has been the means for the going forth of the black horse of the kingdom of finance. HOS 9:17; LUK 21:24. 9. The call is made to hurt not the oil and wine. REV 6:6. a. Whereas wheat and barley represent the basic necessities of life, oil and wine represent the luxuries. (1) Bread supplies strength whereas wine is used for pleasure and oil for Christ’s Second Coming: When? How? 4-7-19 Page 11 cosmetic purposes. PSA 104:15. (2) The parallelism of PRO 21:17 associates wine and oil with pleasure. (3) Those who are at ease in Zion drink wine in bowls and anoint themselves with the chief ointments. AMO 6:1, 6. b. While the rich oppress the masses, their luxuries remain unharmed. They live it up while they grind the poor. c. The foregoing is not Gentile anti-semitism but rather the words of Jewish prophets and apostles censuring apostate Jewry for systematizing an exploitation of men (Jews included) for unjust financial gain. They had been doing so before Christ came, were doing it during His ministry, and continued it after Christ’s return to heaven. 10. Mind that the black horse of REV 6:5 does not go forth until the Lamb (Christ) opens the seal. a. Christ is sovereign over the kingdom of finance which can do no more than He permits. b. As a recompence (requital for a deed), Christ has turned the non-elect Jews over to covetousness which blinds them to the gospel. ROM 11:9-10. c. Christ thus shows Himself as “...the LORD God of recompences shall surely requite” (JER 51:56). (1) Christ said that the things that belonged to the peace of the Jews were hid from their eyes. LUK 19:41-44. (2) “...that which should have been for their welfare...” (PSA 69:22) became a trap. (3) Christ turning their pursuit of wealth into a judgment shows His power over it. (4) Therefore, Christians must not be dismayed unto ridiculous conclusions of hatred of others: the true King has ordered things so and judgment begins at the house of God (1PE 4:17), not the House of Rothschild. F. The elect unbelieving Jews shall be fully saved when God wraps things up (ROM 11:26-29), for the New Covenant includes forgiveness of sins and full knowledge of God. HEB 8:10-12 c/w 1CO 13:12 c/w ISA 25:8-9 c/w 1CO 15:54. XX. Here is an overview of the Biblical timeline between the First and Second Advents of Christ, and the “wrap-up.” A. The time between the advents is the “thousand years” of REV 20:4-6 c/w REV 1:6. 1. Saints have been reigning with King Jesus by grace. ROM 5:17-21. 2. Saints have been royal priests. 1PE 2:5, 9. 3. “Thousand” in symbolic language is a full number known only to God. PSA 50:10; 105:8. 4. Satan is bound for a “thousand years” during this co-reign of the saints but loosed for a “little season” near the end. REV 20:1-3, 7-8. a. Christ spoiled Satan by His resurrection (COL 2:14-15) and binding precedes spoiling. MAT 12:28-29. b. Binding is not complete restriction. ACT 24:23, 27. c. During this “thousand years” of binding, the Spirit’s ministry would hinder Satan from his goal of world government and worship. 2TH 2:3-7. 5. This period is a “long time” (MAT 25:19) during which troubled saints must patiently await God’s vengeance. LUK 18:7-8; REV 6:9-11. Christ’s Second Coming: When? How? 4-7-19 Page 12 6. This period is the last time(s), the end(s) of the world. 1PE 1:20; 1JO 2:18; HEB 9:26; 1CO 10:11. B. The Holy Spirit came as promised (ACT 2) and the world-wide preaching of the gospel began to fulfil Jesus’ words in MAT 24:14. c/w ROM 16:26; COL 1:6, 23. C. Jerusalem and Judea were destroyed in a bloodbath which was the great tribulation of MAT 24:21-22. 1. Murderous factions among the Jews; famine and cannibalism in the city; blood running in the streets in sufficient quantity to extinguish fires; 100% war casualties at Rome’s hands; Jerusalem leveled per LUK 19:43-44. Sounds like great tribulation to a reasonable person’s ears! 2. Wrath came on them to the uttermost (1TH 2:16), i.e., “to the extreme or uttermost degree, extent, capacity, or limit.” 3. “It is therefore impossible to go distinctly over every instance of these men's iniquity. I shall therefore speak my mind here at once briefly: That neither did any other city ever suffer such miseries, nor did any age ever breed a generation more fruitful in wickedness than this was, from the beginning of the world.” (Josephus, Wars of the Jews, p. 565) 4. This marked the completion of the seventy weeks of DAN 9:24-27 which were “...determined upon thy people...” (Israel). a. determine: To put an end to (in time); to bring to an end; to end, conclude terminate. b. With the end of the 70th week, God terminated Israel’s status before Him. The “times of the Gentiles” (LUK 21:24) under the new Messianic order began, the kingdom fully freed from its Mosaic vestiges. c. NOTE: Pushing the 70th week into the future as Dispensationalism teaches hardly bolsters the notion of a God-ordained Jewish millennial superstate after the 70th week. The 70th week marked the END of God’s dealing with Israel; therefore NO Jewish millennium to follow. D. The next event of significance from heaven’s perspective will be the personal appearing of Christ to judge the world and gather His elect. MAT 24:30-31. 1. Unlike the destruction of Jerusalem which was fraught with dread and anxiety, and which was “tipped off” by a certain sign (armies encompassing Jerusalem, LUK 21:20), the Second Coming will come suddenly upon a carefree world. MAT 24:38-39 c/w 1TH 5:1-3. 2. That season of secure, peaceful humanism accords with the reign of the antichrist or “man of sin” which occurs BEFORE the day of Christ to gather home His elect. 2TH 2:1-6. a. The germ of antichrist was already in place when Paul wrote (2TH 2:7 c/w 1JO 2:18). Anti is a prefix meaning “opposite, against, in exchange, instead, representing, rivalling or simulating.” b. A general apostasy (falling away) opens the door for the revelation of the man of sin / son of perdition. v. 3. (1) Many candidates have been suggested as being the antichrist: Nero, Mohammed, the Papacy, Charlemagne, Napoleon, Mussolini, Stalin, Ronald Reagan, etc. (2) Of these, the Papacy is the most likely inasmuch as it has purported on many occasions to be God presiding over something deemed to be the temple of God, and upon whom all creation depends for salvation. Christ’s Second Coming: When? How? 4-7-19 Page 13 c. Antichrist opposes (anti) God by aping God in the temple of God. v. 4. (1) Some think that this temple of God is a rebuilt Jewish temple such as dispensationalism expects. But such a temple could only falsely be called the temple of God: God has no use for that discarded system. (2) Another possibility is that this temple of God is a wayward N.T. church since a church is the temple of God (1CO 3:16; 2CO 6:16) and “son of perdition” was elsewhere ascribed to Judas who was “a devil” IN the church. JOH 6:70-71; 17:12. d. REV 13 details the antichrist reign: a world government of total military, economic and religious control that will be universally worshipped by the non-elect who are fascinated by miracles. c/w 2TH 2:9-10. (1) All victory, worship and wealth is ascribed to the beast instead of to the true God from Whom all blessings flow. (2) This is Satan striving to be like the Most High. ISA 14:14. e. A divine restraint withheld the revealing of the man of sin for a season. 2TH 2:6-8. (1) let: To hinder, prevent, obstruct, stand in the way (of a person, thing, action, etc.) (2) If apostasy (falling away) introduces the man of sin (2TH 2:3), faithfulness to the truth obviously restrains him. f. The “Pax Dragona” world government will be violently overthrown by Christ when it makes its final attempt to eliminate the camp of the saints. REV 20:7-9; 1TH 5:3. XXI. Here is a rough order of events at the Second Coming of Christ, the great and dreadful day of the Lord. When these things finally come to pass, they will do so speedily, suddenly. LUK 17:28-29; 18:7-8. A. The natural creation itself will begin to come unglued. REV 6:12-14. B. Christ descends from heaven with a shout, the voice of the archangel, and the trump of God. 1TH 4:16. C. The dead in Christ rise first unto incorruptible bodies like Christ's. 1TH 4:16; PHIL 3:20-21. D. The living elect are similarly changed and caught up with the resurrected elect to meet the Lord in the air. 1CO 15:51-52; 1TH 4:17. E. The elect are thus raptured out before the judgment befalls the antichrist empire. REV 19:11-21. F. The antichrist and the false prophet are cast into the lake of fire. 2TH 2:8; REV 19:20. G. Satan is cast into the lake of fire. REV 20:10. H. The wicked dead are also raised to be presented for judgment with the living wicked. JOH 5:28-29; REV 20:11-13; MAT 25:31-46. I. The heavens and earth pass away. REV 20:11; 2PE 3:10-12. J. The judgment. REV 20:12-13; MAT 25:31-33. K. Death and hell are cast into the lake of fire. REV 20:14. L. The wicked are cast into the lake of fire. REV 20:15; MAT 25:41, 46. M. The new heavens and earth are ushered in. REV 21; 2PE 3:12-13. XXI. Saints should live in earnest, godly expectation of deliverance from wrath. 2PE 3:14; 1TH 1:10. Christ’s Second Coming: When? How? 4-7-19 Page 14
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