Sunday School

Things to Come

I. Scripture concerning the rapture

A. 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18

1. “Asleep”

• This expression is used only of _______________ to describe the state of their bodies at death (Luke 8:52-53; John 11:11-14; 1 Corinthians 15:51).

2. “Sorrow not, even as others which have no hope”

• This does not teach that a Christian should never _______________ over the death of a loved one.

• The stress of the phrase is not on the ______________ of sorrowing, but on the ______________ between the sorrowing of this hopeless world and the sorrow of the hopeful Christian.

3. “Even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him”

• This speaks of the _______________ saints who have been with Christ ever since death.

• The immaterial _______________ will be reunited with the body, which will rise from its earthly grave.

• Simultaneously, the corruptible body will become _______________ (1 Corinthians 15:52).

4. “Prevent”

• This old English word means “_______________.”

• Those ______________ at the rapture will be “preceded” into Christ’s presence by those Christians who have already ______________.

5. “A shout,” “the voice of the archangel,” “the trump of God”

• These expressions are found whenever the Bible speaks of the _______________ of the Church (1 Corinthians 15:52; Revelation 4:1).

6. “To meet the Lord in the air”

• This distinguishes the _______________ from the second coming.

• At the rapture, Christians ______________ the Lord in the air. Seven years later, Christians will ______________ with Christ to the earth (Revelation 19:7-16).

B. 1 Corinthians 15:51-53

1. “In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye”

• Christ’s return in the clouds will be in an _______________ of time.

• At the speed of _______________ the Christians will join Him in the air.

2. “We shall be changed”

• The corruptible body of flesh must be _______________.

• This is the final “_______________ of the body” promised every Christian in Romans 8:11, 23.

• In this passage “immortality” refers to the body’s inability to _______________ from this point throughout eternity.

• It will be a glorious body “fashioned like unto his [_______________] glorious body” (Philippians 3:21).

3. “Must put on incorruption”

• No one could stand in Christ’s presence in his _______________ condition. But because of Calvary the Christian stands justified in God’s sight.

• Those Christians _______________ at the rapture will immediately receive their glorified bodies.

C. Revelation 4:1

1. This passage also describes a “______________” and a “______________.”

2. God’s words to John are a _______________ of God’s call to all Christians at the rapture: “Come up hither and I will shew thee things which must be hereafter.”

II. Principles concerning the rapture

A. The promise of the rapture is found only in the New Testament.

1. This is _______________.

• The promise of the rapture is to the _______________.

• Since the Church was not begun until after the _______________ Testament was completed, it does not mention the rapture.

• Once Christ established His church in the New Testament He gave her His promise that He would return for her in the _______________.

• By contrast, Christ’s promise to the nation of Israel is His second coming to earth to ______________ and ______________ as the promised Messiah.

2. The Church looks for His coming in the ______________; Israel looks for His coming to ______________.

B. The promise of the rapture is found primarily in the epistles.

1. The epistles were written to _______________, and the rapture is a promise to them.

• By contrast, when Christ speaks of His coming in the gospels, it is almost exclusively a description of His _______________ coming to earth.

• As Christ spoke to His disciples, He was speaking to representatives of the ______________ nation. Their great hope was for their Messiah to ______________ in Jerusalem on the throne of David.

2. By understanding the eschatological emphasis of each section of the ______________, fewer mistakes will be made in ______________ interpretation.

• One must always remember that while the Church looks for the ______________, the nation of Israel looks for the ______________ coming of Christ, which will begin the millennial reign of Christ on earth.

Prophetic Emphasis of the Bible • _______________ emphasizes the millennial reign of Christ.

• _______________ emphasize the second coming which ushers in the millennial reign of Christ.

• _______________ emphasize the rapture.

• _______________ emphasizes the Tribulation.

C. The rapture is typified throughout the Bible.

1. It appears to be God’s pattern to remove the _______________ before He sends great judgment.

• God rescued _______________ before He sent judgment (Genesis 6:7-8; 7:1).

• God rescued _______________ from Sodom before He sent judgment (Genesis 18:23-25; 19:22

2. He will do the same thing before the _______________ begins.

D. The two-fold return (rapture and second coming) is an example of the rule of double reference.

1. The rule of _______________ reference is a very important principle in prophetic interpretation.

2. It states that many Scripture references may discuss prophetic events as if they were occurring at the same time when in reality they are separated by great periods of _______________.

• This is also called the “_______________ effect” because it brings events separated in time into close proximity, much as a telescope brings images separated in space into close proximity.

• This principle is found throughout the Bible. (Some examples: Psalm 118:22; Isaiah 9:6; Zechariah 9:9-10.)

3. This rule applies in the New Testament. Christ’s return is actually in two stages: the ______________ and the ______________ coming.

• Other prophetic events may appear to be predicted for the same time period when in reality they are separated by a great amount of time. (Example: John 5:28-29.)

E. The phrase “Day of Christ” usually refers to the rapture.

•1 Corinthians 1:7-8

•1 Corinthians 5:5

•2 Corinthians 1:14

• Philippians 1:10

• Philippians 2:16