Dickerson (28 July 2010)
"Are ALL Christians Going in the Rapture??? Are You SURE You Are Ready???""
Because we are so close to the coming of the Lord, I believe it is time to post Ron’s article again.
Are ALL Christians Going in the Rapture??? Are You SURE You Are Ready???"
This seems to be one of the hot topics on 5 Doves recently, so I feel it is time that I forward one of my tracts to you that I wrote about 12 years ago, with several hundred thousand in circulation. For those of you who believe that ALL Christians will be taken in the Rapture, I hope and pray that you are right. On the other hand, if one believes that way, and feels no need to change his backslidden, lukewarm, compromising, unwatchful, worldly, or fence-straddling ways, WOE BE UNTO HIM, if he suddenly finds the Rapture happened and he was left behind.
Isn't it much safer to get as close to the Lord as we can in these VERY LAST DAYS? Is there any negative in doing that??? It is much safer and wiser to believe that all Christians are NOT going in the Rapture. Not only safer and wiser, but I believe MORE SCRIPTURAL, also. Following is the tract that I wrote:
ARE ALL CHRISTIANS GOING IN THE RAPTURE??? ARE YOU SURE YOU ARE READY/???
Are All Christians going in the Rapture? If, at some point in your life, you have asked Jesus Christ into your life to become your personal Lord and Savior, does this GUARANTEE that you are going in the Rapture? All signs point to the END OF THE AGE VERY SOON, SO THE MOST IMPORTANT QUESTION YOU COULD ASK YOURSELF IS, "AM I READY FOR THE RAPTURE?"
Before we go any further, let's clarify what the RAPTURE is. I Thessalonians 4:16-17 says, "For the Lord Himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: then we which are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air; and so shall we ever be with the Lord."
The Rapture is the GREAT ESCAPE from the horrendous 7-year Tribulation period that is SOON to come on ALL THE WORLD! It is for a body of born-again believers in Jesus Christ. The question is IS THE RAPTURE FOR ALL CHRISTIANS?
It is probably safe to say that a majority of Christians reading this tract would say "YES". We are NOT addressing the issue of salvation, or "once saved, always saved," or "eternal security". For those of you who answered "Yes", CAN YOU FIND EVEN ONE SCRIPTURE THAT GUARANTEES THAT ALL CHRISTIANS ARE GOING IN THE RAPTURE?
Just because you have always believed something, or your Pastor believes it, or your church teaches it, DOES NOT MAKE IT TRUE! IT MUST BE BASED ON THE WORD OF GOD! It is our fervent desire that ALL CHRISTIANS are going in the Rapture. If ALL CHRISTIANS are going in the Rapture, we have lost nothing by drawing closer to the Lord to prepare for His Soon Return. If, on the other hand, we have a false sense of security regarding our readiness for the Rapture and we ignore the Lord's warnings to GET OUR HEARTS RIGHT WITH HIM BEFORE IT IS TOO LATE, we have a TREMENDOUS amount to lose. Just read the Book of Revelation!
"Lord, your Word is awesome. Lord, your Word is powerful. Lord, your Word is sharper than any two-edged sword. Lord, use the convicting power of the word of the Living God and the convicting power of your mighty Holy Spirit to reveal to every one of us the Truth from your Word. If the message of this tract is not true, then cause it to have no effect on the hearts of those reading it. If, however, the message from your Word IS true, we ask you to release an outpouring of your Holy Spirit on Christians everywhere. For those who are not spiritually ready, cut to the very bottom of their heart and REMOVE THAT FALSE SENSE OF SECUITTY IN THE NAME OF JESUS! AMEN."
Your opinion and my opinion do not matter. What you have been taught does not matter. WHAT DOES THE WORD OF GOD SAY? This is ALL that really matters. The remainder of this tract will be WARNINGS DIRECTLY FROM THE WORD OF GOD CONCERNING YOUR READINESS FOR THE RAPTURE! (If YOU are ready, that's wonderful, but how about your family, your friends, and those who sit in the church pews around you?)
In Luke 21, the whole chapter is discussing the End of the Age and the Second Coming of Christ. In verses 34-36, JESUS GIVES AN OMINOUS WARNING TO ALL CHRISTIANS, "and TAKE HEED TO YOURSELVES, lest at any time YOUR HEARTS be over-charged with surfeiting (partying), and drunkenness, AND CARES OF THIS LIFE, and so THAT DAY COME UPON YOU UNAWARES. For as a snare (trap) shall it come on all them that dwell on the face of the whole earth, WATCH YE, therefore, AND PRAY ALWAYS, THAT YE MAY BE ACCOUNTED WORTHY TO ESCAPE ALL these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the son of man (Jesus)."
If ALL Christians were going to take part in this GREAT ESCAPE, WHY WOULD JESUS GIVE SUCH A STERN AND OMINOUS WARNING TO THE END-TIME CHRISTIAN??? This is DEFINITELY a very PERSONAL WARNING for each of us. The subject matter can be nothing but the Tribulation hour and the Rapture. Jesus says to pray always. Surely, Jesus knows that a non-Christian cannot be in an attitude of constant prayer. Surely, non-Christians are not expected to be LOOKING FOR THAT DAY and WATCHING for signs of His Soon Return.
Jesus is continuously talking to HIS FOLLOWERS throughout this chapter. Jesus says to TAKE HEED TO YOURSELF, He is addressing YOUR HEART and He is constantly personalizing this message to YOU, to YE, THE CHRISTIAN! ARE YOU LISTENING? ARE YOU READY?
What can we do, as Christians, to be found WORTHY of the Lord's GREAT ESCAPE, THE RAPTURE? Jesus tells us to be in a constant attitude of prayer. Become so close to the Lord that you can talk with Him about anything. Pray that the Lord would reveal to YOU anything in your life that might keep you from being ready for the Rapture. Then you need to act upon that which the Lord shows you to do.
In this passage, the Lord strongly encourages us to be WATCHING for the SIGNS of His Soon Return, so that we would not be UNAWARE of the approximate time of His Return. Jesus said we could KNOW when His Return was NEAR, EVEN AT THE DOORS! ALL SIGNS NOW CONFIRM TO US THAT HIS COMING IS AT THE DOOR!!!
If you do not have this firm conviction in your heart that our Lord's Return is AT THE DOOR, it is probably because you have not been WATCHING for signs as He continuously admonishes us to do over and over again in the New Testament (Read Mark 13 and 14). Are the CARES OF THIS LIFE your priority, or do you so much look forward to His Return that YOU LOVE HIS APPEARING (II Timothy 4:8) more than the things of this life?
The CARES OF THIS LIFE (Luke 21:34) are what cause us to become "worldly" Christians, or "backslidden" Christians, or "lukewarm" Christians. Luke 21:34-36 (Go back and read it again) strongly implies that these types of Christians ARE NOT READY FOR THE RAPTURE!!!
In Revelation, starting with Chapter 6, the horrible judgments of the Tribulation are poured out on an unsuspecting world. In Chapters 1-3, there are several WARNINGS TO THE CHRISTIANS IN THE LAST DAYS, WARNINGS BEFORE THE RAPTURE AND THE TRIBULATION IN CHAPTERS 6-19.
The constant theme of Revelation, Chapter 2, is the NEED OF THE END-TIME CHRISTIAN TO REPENT! Rev. 2: 4-5 says, "I have somewhat against thee, because THOU HAS LEFT THY FIRST LOVE. Remember, therefore, from whence thou are fallen, AND REPENT, and do the first works; or else I WILL COME UNTO THEE QUICKLY, AND WILL REMOVE THY CANDLESTICK OUT OF HIS PLACE, EXCEPT THOU REPENT."
If you HAVE LEFT YOUR FIRST LOVE you are a "backslidden" Christian. You need to REPENT and restore your relationship with Christ back to what it should be. Is the Lord speaking to YOUR HEART RIGHT NOW?
Rev. 3:10 says, "Because thou has kept the word of my patience, I ALSO WILL KEEP THEE FROM THE HOUR OF TEMPTATION, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth." The implication of this verse is obvious: If the end-time Christian does NOT stay close to the Lord and endure to the end, HE WILL NOT BE KEPT FROM THE TRIBULATION HOUR!
Rev. 3: 15-16 is ANOTHER OMINOUS WARNING TO ALL CHRISTIANS, "I know thy works, that thou are neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. So then BECAUSE THOU ART LUKEWARM, AND NEITHER COLD NOT HOT, I WILL SPUE THEE OUT OF MY MOUTH."
Can you honestly give another explanation for this verse, other than the LORD CASTING LUKEWARM CHRISTIANS OUT INTO THE TRIBULATION? What are YOU doing that would show the Lord that you are ON FIRE for Him? These verses say emphatically that their WORKS WERE LUKEWARM.
What happens to the unwatchful SERVANT who believes his LORD is not coming back for a while and is not that concerned about the way he is living his life? Matthew 24: 50-51 says, "the LORD of that SERVANT...shall cut him asunder, and appoint him his portion with the hypocrites: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth (The Tribulation Hour?)." In Matthew 25:30, we see the exact same result for the unprofitable SERVANT. In both cases, there was A LORD--SERVANT RELATIONSHIP ALREADY ESTABLISHED. ARE ALL CHRISTIANS GOING IN THE RAPTURE? WHAT DOES THE WORD SAY???
This world is full of LUKEWARM, BACKSLIDDEN, UNWATCHFUL, AND WORLDLY Christians. In Rev. 7:9, we see a GREAT MULTITUDE that no man could number standing before the Lamb of God in Heaven. Verse 14 describes them, "These are they which came OUT OF GREAT TRIBULATION, AND HAVE WASHED THEIR ROBES, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb." In Chapter 20, it says they were beheaded for not taking the Mark of the Beast.
This great multitude of people already had robes. Your Robe of righteousness is given to you at the time of your salvation. They were already saved but their ROBES WERE DIRTY. These COMPROMISING Christians were caught up in the CARES OF THE WORLD when the Rapture happened and they were cast into the Tribulation hour like the Scriptures had warned them about so many times. They WASHED THEIR DIRTY ROBES in the Great Tribulation because there is no compromise then---IT'S EITHER JESUS CHRIST (and lose your head) OR ANTICHRIST (and lose your soul FOREVER)!!!
Do you really want to have to face that choice? It is clear from God's Word what you must do to be assured of a place in the Rapture. YOU MUST ACT QUICKLY BECAUSE THE TIME FOR THE RAPTURE IS ALMOST HERE!
1. Make sure that you have received Jesus Christ into your life as your PERSONAL Lord and Savior.
2. Examine your own heart for any signs of backsliding, worldliness, compromising, and lukewarmness.
3. REPENT (Turn COMPLETELY away from sin and turn COMPLETELY around towards Jesus). Sin separates you from God, even as a Christian.
4. Study end-time Biblical prophecy until you become completely convinced that His Coming is, indeed, AT THE DOOR. This will help keep you from temptation and sin. JESUS IS COMING VERY SOON!!!
5. DO SOMETHING FOR THE LORD. (Passing out TRACTS would be a good start.)
6. Examine your priorities, lest the CARES OF THIS LIFE cause YOU to MISS THE RAPTURE, as we are so adamantly WARNED about in Luke 21, and so many other Scriptures.
7. Draw closer to God by praying, reading His Word, attending a fundamental church as often as possible, and surround yourself with a Christian atmosphere (Christian friends, books, music, radio, TV, etc.)
8. PRAY DILIGENTLY. ASK THE LORD TO REVEAL TO YOU ANYTHING IN YOUR LIFE THAT EVEN MIGHT KEEP YOU FROM THE RAPTURE. PRAY THAT THE LORD WOULD GIVE YOU A PEACE IF YOU ARE READY AND AN UNREST AND UNEASINESS IN YOUR HEART IF YOU ARE NOT READY.
9. Listen for His voice and then STAY OPEN TO THE LEADING OF THE HOLY SPIRIT.
10. Act upon that which the Lord is calling you to do. DO IT NOW BEFORE IT IS TOO LATE!
If the Lord has planted the least bit of doubt or uneasiness in your heart, will you swallow your pride and pray this prayer with me:
"Dear Lord, Thank you for preparing a WAY OF ESCAPE from the horrible Tribulation to come. It is my
sincere desire to be ready for your Soon Return, so that I can participate in the Rapture. Give me a COMPLETE PEACE IN MY HEART FROM YOU if I am, indeed, ready.
Let there be no false sense of security in my heart concerning my readiness for Your Return. Begin to reveal to me things in my life and in my heart that might keep me from the Rapture. Show me what I need to do to BE READY and then give me the power to act upon that which you show me to do. Draw me away from the world and closer to you every day. Use me in whatever way you can to help others who may not be ready for your Return. Fill me with your peace when I am ready and fill me with YOUR POWER, for victory over sin and temptation, and for effective service for your kingdom. In Jesus' mighty name, Amen."
The words of the Lord that He would leave with you in these last days before His Return, "REMEMBER THEREFORE, HOW THOU HAST RECEIVED AND HEARD, AND HOLD FAST, AND REPENT. IF THEREFORE, THOW SHALT NOT WATCH, I WILL COME ON THEE AS A THIEF, AND THOU SHALT NOT KNOW WHAT HOUR I WILL COME UPON THEE." (Revelation 3:3)
Feel free to make copies of this tract or forward it to your backslidden, lukewarm, compromising, unwatchful, and worldly family members and friends. Do not delay. Time is short. What we do, we must do quickly now.
I want to add that many believe they are ready for the rapture when they are not because of unsound doctrine.