Friday, August 3, 2018
If you’re one of many conflicted by what the Bible says vs Church tradition, I pray that God’s grace and wisdom frees you from that awful condition. If you ask, God can and will help you.
When a qualified teacher teaches any discipline, he teaches all details of it, especially the most difficult, that his subjects not fail in it. Likewise, when a qualified teacher teaches the times of the end, he does so according to the testimony of Jesus. Otherwise, in reality, “when tribulation or persecution arises because of the word, immediately he stumbles” (Matt. 13:21).
The more one reads the Bible with a sincere heart to know Jesus’ truths, the more one realizes the measures the Church has taken to protect the pre-tribulation rapture lie. By silently ignoring the testimony of Jesus, the traditions-honoring Church makes of no effect Jesus’ revealed truths for the tribulation and gathering of saints; for which one may not object, lest he suffer exclusion.
In the parable of the wheat and tares, the wheat being the Lord’s redeemed and the tares the wicked and unbelieving, Jesus said “Let both grow together until the harvest, and at the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, ‘First gather together the tares and bind them in bundles to burn them, but gather the wheat into my barn’” (Matt. 13:30).
When Jesus said “Let both grow together until the harvest”, He establishes the fact that in this age there is only one gathering of all people, unbelievers and believers alike, which occurs “at the time of harvest”. At that time the wicked and righteous are gathered, in that order, at the Jewish Fall Festival of Yom Kippur, at the Last Trumpet of Rosh Hashanah.
Jesus goes on to explain this end-time parable: “The field is the world, the good seeds are the sons of the kingdom, but the tares are the sons of the wicked one…the harvest is the end of the age, and the reapers are the angels. Therefore as the tares are gathered and burned in the fire, so it will be at the end of this age. The Son of Man will send out His angels, and they will gather out of His kingdom all things that offend…and will cast them into the furnace of fire. There will be wailing and gnashing of teeth. Then the righteous will shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. He who has ears to hear, let him hear!” (Matt. 13:38–43).
Anyone not brainwashed by the pre-trib rapture will immediately notice the gathering order. Jesus said the tares are gathered first, then the wheat. But pre-trib rapture teachers say just the opposite; that the wheat is gathered first, and then the tares. This is also how they destroy Jesus’ Matt. 24:29–31 truths where Jesus said He gathers His elect “Immediately after the tribulation”, but false teachers say He gathers His elect immediately before the tribulation.
We must discern the consequential enormity of Satan’s pre-trib rapture deception; a deception that is the greatest threat to the end-time Church; a deception based on conjecture, assumption and wishful thinking; a deception for which there is not one verse of Scripture; a deception that will create great offense and hatred in fulfillment of Jesus’ warning of the tribulation wherein “many will be offended, will betray one another, and will hate one another” (Matt. 24:10).
False teachers say that Jesus was not talking to the would-be Church when He taught end-time events and the gathering of His elect saints, so, we can ignore those teachings. Lies persuade the non-Spirit led and the non-discerning. But he is a deceiver, who, teaches half-truths by silencing Christ’s post-tribulation resurrection rapture of saints “at the last day” (John 6:40).
It’s foolish to believe only some of Jesus’ teachings but not all of what He taught. I pray you discern this because it’s of the highest priority. Satan has sown the pre-trib rapture lie into the Church to make saints unprepared to “endure to the end” (Matt. 24:13); “at the last day” (John 6:40), “at the last trumpet” (1 Cor. 15:51–52), at “the first resurrection” (Rev. 20:4–6), when “the Lord Himself will descend from heaven” (1 Thess. 4:16), because “He must remain in heaven until the time comes for God to restore everything” (Acts 3:21 NIV), at the Last Trumpet.
What, then, must be our response to these things but to “Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the basic principles of this world, and not according to Christ” (Col. 2:8). Jesus and His teachings are the answer to every issue of truth, for Jesus is “the truth” (John 14:6). Additionally, “Let the word of Christ [not men or their traditions] dwell in you richly in all wisdom” (Col. 3:16).
What the Church needs today are qualified and bold men like Christ’s apostles, and John the revelator who was exiled on the island of Patmos “for the testimony of Jesus Christ” (Rev. 1:9). The Church doesn’t need men who are afraid, compromised, or honoring traditions rather than defending the testimony of Jesus Christ, because, “from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and the violent take it by force” (Matt. 11:12).
Don’t mistake “the violent take it by force” as meaning physical violence as one forced against his will which was how the evil popes of Roman Catholicism made false converts. “the violent”, here, means to be gentle but powerfully qualified, full of the Holy Spirit and boldly assertive, to defend and honor God’s Word above the words and traditions of men. A true Christian leader is not traditions-minded, nor does he silence Jesus’ testimony, nor is he culture-accommodating.
Christ returns only once “at the time of harvest” when He will first gather the wicked and unbelieving, casting them out where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. After that He gathers His elect saints, confirming God’s Word that “A thousand may fall at your side, and ten thousand at your right hand; but it shall not come near you. Only with your eyes shall you look, and see the reward of the wicked” (Psa. 91:7–8). The knowledge and peace of God be upon you and sustain you to the end as you walk by faith in the testimony of Jesus Christ.
Marlin J. Yoder