Inquiring minds want to know as did the disciples who followed Christ. Matthew 24 and 25 and Luke 21 record Jesus’ specific answer to that question. In fact, we are now living in the most exciting time in history. We can now say according to the prophecies of God’s Word that there are no prophecies prohibiting the imminent return of Jesus Christ or the rapture of the church. We can say this because we are living in a time in history in which Matthew 24:14 is being fulfilled! This is so exciting!
Matthew 24:14 (NLT) “And the Good News about the Kingdom will be preached throughout the whole world, so that all nations will hear it; and then the end will come.”
The final prophecy that Jesus said must be fulfilled is that everyone would be given the opportunity to hear the gospel. No one will have an excuse for not receiving Christ. 2 Peter 3: 9-10 (NLT) ”The Lord isn’t really being slow about his promise, as some people think. No, he is being patient for your sake. He does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants everyone to repent. But the day of the Lord will come as unexpectedly as a thief. Then the heavens will pass away with a terrible noise, and the very elements themselves will disappear in fire, and the earth and everything on it will be found to deserve judgment.”
For the first time in history since Jesus gave this prerequisite, the prophecy of the gospel being preached throughout the world is literally being fulfilled through the church using mission enterprises, the Internet, social media, radio and television broadcast. There is not a place on the globe that does not have the gospel being proclaimed through one medium or another. This is why the church exists and why our ministry is on TV–to broadcast the gospel so that everyone will have the opportunity to hear the Good News about the Kingdom of God.
You can read the more specific prophecies in Matthew 24 and 25 and Luke 21 where Jesus gives the longest answer to a question in all the New Testament. Matthew 24:3 (NLT) ‘Later, Jesus sat on the Mount of Olives. His disciples came to him privately and said, “Tell us, when will all this happen? What sign will signal your return and the end of the world?’”
There are a number of specific natural and supernatural prophecies specified in these chapters that we have already seen fulfilled, but there is no one-hanging prophecy yet to be fulfilled that is prohibiting the return of Christ for His Church. He may come at any time! We will not know the specific time, but we can judge from the prophecies that have been and are being fulfilled in Matthew 24 and 25 and Luke 21 that His coming could be anytime! He describes the prophecies like birth pains. As they increase in intensity and frequency, we know that the baby is about to come. With the intensity and frequency of the specific prophecies Jesus listed in these chapters, it is exciting to think that His return could be at any time!
Luke 21:28 (NIV) “When these things begin to take place, stand up and lift up your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.”
Matthew 24:33 (NIV) “Even so, when you see all these things, you know that it is near, right at the door.”
//Theological Thursday: Questions are welcome. Asking them makes our faith personal and real. On Thursdays I will be answering theological questions. Enter yours in the comment box below and I will select one each week to answer on our blog.