The Anticipating Life

These are a few things to take note of regarding the life of the believer, anticipating the sudden catching away to be with the Lord:

  • We are delivered from the wrath to come-I Thessalonians 1:10
  • The “helmet of salvation” as Paul spoke of in Ephesians is protection from attacks from the enemy (principalities, powers, etc.).  The hope of salvation is a helmet giving us hope against enduring God’s wrath.  Our “appointment” is to obtain salvation, and to be delivered from the wrath to come.  There are at least two other things appointed:  afflictions and tribulations from unbelievers in this world (I Thessalonians 3:3,   Acts 14:12), and an appointment to meet the Lord in the air (I Thessalonians 4:17).  We also must stand before the judgement seat (βῆμα, bēma)
    of Christ, and give an account of the things done in His Body, but not as a matter of punishment or wrath, but of reward.  I Thessalonians 5:9 states that God has not appointed us to wrath.  He has appointed us to live together with Him.
  • Indications that the end of this present age is coming, and with it the end of the day of salvation:
    • Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils; Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron; Forbidding to marry, [and commanding] to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth. [1Ti 4:1-3]
      • “Religion” based on food and celibacy
    • This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away. For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts, Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth. … But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived. [2Ti 3:1-7, 13]
      • Sin will get worse and worse, “Godliness” will take a form without God’s power, and actually deny God’s power.  Have we heard about the “good without God” movement?
  • The conclusion that we can draw from all of this is that nothing prophetically is standing in the way for the Lord to catch us away.
  • With this in mind, we:
    • wait
      • And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, [even] Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come. [1Th 1:10]
    • Increase and abound in love one toward another
      • And the Lord make you to increase and abound in love one toward another, and toward all [men], even as we [do] toward you: [1Th 3:12]
    • Walk in holiness, honor, honesty, righteousness
      • Furthermore then we beseech you, brethren, and exhort [you] by the Lord Jesus, that as ye have received of us how ye ought to walk and to please God, [so] ye would abound more and more. For ye know what commandments we gave you by the Lord Jesus. For this is the will of God, [even] your sanctification, that ye should abstain from fornication: That every one of you should know how to possess his vessel in sanctification and honour; Not in the lust of concupiscence, even as the Gentiles which know not God: That no [man] go beyond and defraud his brother in [any] matter: because that the Lord [is] the avenger of all such, as we also have forewarned you and testified. For God hath not called us unto uncleanness, but unto holiness. He therefore that despiseth, despiseth not man, but God, who hath also given unto us his holy Spirit. [1Th 4:1-8]
    • Live in anticipation, not fear
      • Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and [by] our gathering together unto Him, That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand. [2Th 2:1-2]
    • Stand strong in every good word and work
      • But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth: Whereunto He called you by our gospel, to the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the traditions which ye have been taught, whether by word, or our epistle. Now our Lord Jesus Christ Himself, and God, even our Father, which hath loved us, and hath given [us] everlasting consolation and good hope through grace,  Comfort your hearts, and stablish you in every good word and work. [2Th 2:13-17]
    • Live LOOKING, not living lazily, but with anticipation
      • For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works. [Tit 2:11-14]

Previous study:  ἁρπάζω (harpazō)

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