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Over the past few years my blog has been visited by people from all over the world. Very few know me, or of me, they simply are looking information concerning the Bible and discover my blog. After many years of intense study and teaching, I've come to believe we are vulnerable to misguided and incorrect teaching if we don't understand for ourselves the teaching of God's Word. My 'hot buttons' are - grace, sovereignty, exhortations and sanctification. If you understand these basic principles of Scripture, and apply them to daily life, you will understand what it means to have peace, joy and absolute security in any circumstance.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

May Rapture - A Bridge to Summer

I was preparing a Bible lesson one day and wanted to use the concept of a 'bridge' to explain how Jesus can be our bridge to God. I felt I needed to know more about bridges so I asked my sweet son-in-law Daron, who is a civil engineer type person, help me please! He gave me such a meaningful definition that I was able to use it as an example.

May is a bridge of sorts - it transitions us from spring to summer. This is the month, in much of the world, when we can predict warming weather, longer days, more sunshine and look forward to picnics in the park, or walks on the beach. The hills around our area of San Diego are still lush spring green. By the end of summer they will have turned dry and golden.

We've found May is a good month to travel. We were married in May, Mother's Day is in May, my birthday is in May......our house begins to look like a Hallmark card store! It seems that the colder the climate, the bigger the celebration in anticipation of summer fun. We've noticed in our travels that people love to plant flowers that will only last for a season, new life and glorious color that dispels the gray of the winter months.

Along with the warmer weather can come very unstable air currents that cause horrific storms and tornadoes. This year has been especially violent and hundreds of people in the U.S. have lost their homes and all their belongings. Many have lost their life. We can speak to God in the midst of chaos and storms in our life. He's in charge of the weather, He is in control of His creation, even though it sometimes doesn't seem like it.

"I form the light and create darkness, I bring prosperity and create disaster; I, the Lord, do all these things. Isaiah 45:7.

King David, who wrote all those beautiful psalms, knew just where to get comfort. He wrote in Psalm 57:1 - "I will take refuse in the shadow of your wings until the disaster has passed."

Job, who experienced more than a little trouble in his life, heard God speak to him 'out of the storm', Job 40:6. And we know how easily Jesus was able to quiet a storm from the story in Luke 8:24, ".....the storm subsided, and all was calm". I believe this is what we all seek....a calmness in our soul, the faith to believe that no matter what is happening in our life, God has His hand on us, and everything will be happen according to His plan and be for our ultimate good. And I might add, always for His glory!

This world can be a mess, God knew it would be. We are separated from Him by sin. Many of us don't look at ourselves as sinners. We're 'good people', right? We may be 'good' in the human sense, but God demands perfection, perfect we are not! And this is why He became man, in the person of Jesus, and just like a bridge, allows us to cross over to the other side. And guess what? That's where we'll find a relationship with God!

Many have asked me...."What do you think about the prediction of the rapture?" Let me say again, what I think doesn't matter, I couldn't possibly figure all this out! I can go to the Bible however and ask the Lord to reveal what it is He wants us to know. The Bible does not use the word 'rapture'. Just like 'trinity', it's a word we've chosen to describe something spiritual in an earthly way that we can understand. The dictionary defines 'rapture' as 'the state of being carried away with joy, love, ecstasy.' There will be a rapture and believers will be lifted up, they will simply disappear from this world, but it is for 'no man to know', the time when this will happen, see Matthew 24:36. So why bother trying to 'read the signs' and figure it ? Apparently those who do this, read, but distort the Bible and think they somehow have a 'higher knowledge'....don't listen! They want their 'day in the sun'. God won't allow it!

You can read all about this amazing event that will take place in I Thessalonians 4:13 - 18. Continue reading in chapter 5. Believers will take great comfort in this passage.

"For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our lord Jesus Christ. He died for us so that, whether we are awake or asleep, we may live together with him". Thess. 5:9 - 10.

Yes! JESUS IS COMING AGAIN! The first time He came as a humble baby, next time He will come as 'King of Kings, Lord of Lords'. The Book of Revelation says, "Look, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him, even those who pierced him. I am the Alpha and Omega (beginning and the end), says the Lord God, who is, and who was, and who is to come, the Almighty"....Rev. 1:7 - 8

If you are a human being, you are the reason Jesus went to the cross. If you were the only person in the world and it was His will that you be redeemed, He'd have died on the cross for you, and you alone. You are that loved and important to Him. That is a bit humbling, isn't it?

At this time, when the Lord comes again, the unbelievers, those who do not know Jesus as their Lord and Savior, will not be killed, but rather be allowed to see what earth is like without the presence of God's Holy Spirit. In other words, all hell will break loose. It won't be fun!

In order to get any wisdom or comfort from the Bible, you need to believe that it's God's Word. You can gather all manner of information to convince you of this, and there is much to convince, but there still is a matter of 'faith'. You need the faith to believe and faith comes from Jesus - so ask Him! Hebrews 12:2, 'Jesus is the author of our faith'.

Do you know the famous Napoleon had something to say about the Bible? He said, "The Bible is no mere book, but a Living Creature, with a power that conquers all that oppose it."

In the month of May, we have a rapture of sorts, we are carried away, transitioned to a more pleasant time of year. O.K., that may be a stretch, but it works for me. I hope you will have a dictionary definition of 'rapture' this summer and be carried away with joy, love, and ecstasy.

Lord, help us to hold on to what is true, and give us the courage to stand in Your Word and to keep looking up, watching and waiting for your return. I know you will come, because you promised, and you are faithful.

Bibles travel well, you can take one anyplace you go, and you can even have the whole Bible downloaded to an E-Reader. Don't leave home without it this summer! And tell everyone the Lord sends into your life that our bridge to a relationshp with God the Father is through Jesus. What fun it will be when 'we meet in the air'!