For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given; and the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. (7) Of the increase of His government and peace there will be no end, upon the throne of David and over His kingdom, to order it and establish it with judgment and justice from that time forward, even forever. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this (Isaiah 9:6-9 –NKJV).
For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ all shall be made alive. (23) But each one in his own order: Christ the firstfruits, afterward those who are Christ’s at His coming. (24)
Then comes the end, when He delivers the kingdom to God the Father, when He puts an end to all rule and all authority and power (1 Corinthians 15:22-24-NKJV).
Today I am continuing my teaching about the sequence of events in the return of Christ. My goal is to bring clarity to what I see in scripture concerning what is to come as the world is prepared for Christ’s return and reign.
The last book of the Bible, the book of Revelation, is about Jesus Christ coming as rightful owner of the earth to defeat His enemies, to judge the un-repentant wickedness of men and nations, to judge Satan, and to reclaim the earth for the Kingdom of Heaven, cleanse it, and make it a beautiful place for God and man to have fellowship once again throughout eternity.
Jesus came almost 2000 years as a baby, in humility, taking upon Himself our suffering and sin, and providing a way for His Grace to purify us from our sin and restore our personal relationship and fellowship with God.
Notice John 1:17: For the law was given through Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. Notice again that the law came though Moses. The Old Covenant, with its emphasis on the 10 commandments, showed us that we cannot please God with self-effort. The law revealed our sin. We call that era the dispensation of law.
During the last 2000 years we’ve been living in the church age, the dispensation of Grace. The long-suffering of God has been emphasized to show that He loves mankind, and wants all of us to have the opportunity to respond to His Grace.
Grace is God dealing lovingly and tenderly with us and with our sin. Grace is God opening up His love nature to willingly forgive and cleanse our disobedience, and to welcome us freely into relationship with Him through Christ.
But also notice that Grace and Truth came through Jesus Christ. Jesus didn’t come only to cleanse our sin, He also came to show us how to live a life that pleases God. That comes through truth. Jesus, within Himself and His sacrifice for us, wed Grace and Truth together.
To receive only Grace is to live a life of bondage to sin. But when you allow His Grace and Truth to flood your life, only then does true freedom manifests in you.
When Jesus returns in His Second Coming, He will be emphasizing Truth. He will come as a judge to His enemies, for they have spurned His Love, rejected His Grace, and have refused His Truth. The only thing left for those who refuse God’s dealings of Grace, Love, and Truth is Judgment. And that is what is coming next on the earth.
The Day of the Lord is a period of time, not just a 24 hour day. The Day of the Lord starts after the Cosmic Disturbances I mentioned yesterday with the breaking of the 6th seal on the scroll in God’s right hand (see Revelation 6:12-17), and immediately after the rapture of the church to heaven (see Revelation 7:9-17).
The Day of the Lord is mentioned frequently in the Old Testament, and is mentioned by Jesus, the Apostle Paul, and the Apostle Peter. The Day of the Lord begins after God withdraws His earth ambassadors (the church!) to heaven. The Day of the Lord is God declaring war on His enemies. The Day of the Lord encompasses the period of time after the rapture of the church where the 7 trumpet judgments and 7 bowl judgments occur in Revelation 8 through 19.
The scroll in God’s right hand that we’ve discussed in previous days (Revelation 5:1) contains the events of the Day of the Lord. Once the 7 seals on the scroll are broken open, the scroll can be unrolled, and then the events on the scroll come to pass.
Notice Revelation 8:1: When He opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven for about half an hour. Heaven became silent when Jesus broke the last seal on the scroll in God’s right hand. For half an hour, heaven paused, realizing that the prayers of the saints for God’s kingdom to come, and for His will to be accomplished on earth, were about to be answered. Heaven became silent for that half hour, knowing that the awesome judgment of the Holy God of the universe was about to explode on this evil, corrupt planet. Finally, all wrongs, all lies, all rebellion, all deceit, and all evil would receive its just rewards. The trumpet judgments and bowl judgments were about to unleash the fierce wrath of God against all of His enemies.
The church of the Lord Jesus will not be here to experience this time of the wrath of God. Jesus sacrifice on the cross delivered us from the wrath to come (Romans 5:9; 1 Thessalonians 5:9). The first 3½ years of the 70th week of Daniel are the wrath of man, the anti-Christ. The time of great tribulation spoken of by Jesus, when the anti-Christ breaks his 7 year covenant with Israel and martyrdom occurs with the breaking of the 65th seal on the scroll, is the wrath of man.
You and I as believer are immune from the wrath of God. We will not be here during this awful time when 1/3 of the vegetation will die, the fresh and salt waters become polluted, when over 2 billion people die from the effects of the intense wrath of God.
I close this article today with the scriptures that reveal this dark period of judgment coming to earth called The Day of the Lord. Praise God that Jesus has delivered us from the wrath to come…
Scriptures revealing The Day of the Lord…
The Lord Almighty has a day in store for all the proud and lofty, for all that is exalted (and they will be humbled), (13) for all the cedars of Lebanon, tall and lofty, and all the oaks of Bashan, (14) for all the towering mountains and all the high hills, (15) for every lofty tower and every fortified wall, (16) for every trading ship and every stately vessel. (17) The arrogance of man will be brought low and the pride of men humbled; the Lord alone will be exalted in that day, (18) and the idols will totally disappear. (19) Men will flee to caves in the rocks and to holes in the ground from dread of the Lord and the splendor of his majesty, when he rises to shake the earth. (20) In that day men will throw away to the rodents and bats their idols of silver and idols of gold, which they made to worship. (21) They will flee to caverns in the rocks and to the overhanging crags from dread of the Lord and the splendor of his majesty, when he rises to shake the earth (Isaiah 2:12-21 –NIV).
Hail, for the day of the Lord is at hand! It will come as destruction from the Almighty.
(7) Therefore all hands will be limp, every man’s heart will melt, (8) And they will be afraid. Pangs and sorrows will take hold of them; they will be in pain as a woman in childbirth; they will be amazed at one another; their faces will be like flames. (9) Behold, the day of the Lord comes, cruel, with both wrath and fierce anger, to lay the land desolate; and He will destroy its sinners from it. (10) For the stars of heaven and their constellations will not give their light; the sun will be darkened in its going forth, and the moon will not cause its light to shine. (11) “I will punish the world for its evil, and the wicked for their iniquity; I will halt the arrogance of the proud, and will lay low the haughtiness of the terrible. (12) I will make a mortal more rare than fine gold, a man more than the golden wedge of Ophir. (13) Therefore I will shake the heavens, and the earth will move out of her place, In the wrath of the Lord of hosts And in the day of His fierce anger (Isaiah 13:6-13 –NKJV).
All the host of heaven shall be dissolved, and the heavens shall be rolled up like a scroll; all their host shall fall down as the leaf falls from the vine, and as fruit falling from a fig tree. (8) For it is the day of the Lord’s vengeance, the year of recompense for the cause of Zion (Isaiah 34:4,8 –NKJV).
Alas for the day! For the day of the Lord is at hand; it shall come as destruction from the Almighty. (16) Is not the food cut off before our eyes, joy and gladness from the house of our God? (17) The seed shrivels under the clods, storehouses are in shambles; Barns are broken down, for the grain has withered. (18) How the animals groan! The herds of cattle are restless, because they have no pasture; even the flocks of sheep suffer punishment. (19) O Lord, to You I cry out; for fire has devoured the open pastures, and a flame has burned all the trees of the field. (20) The beasts of the field also cry out to You, for the water brooks are dried up, and fire has devoured the open pastures (Joel 1:15-20 –NKJV).
The earth quakes before them, the heavens tremble; The sun and moon grow dark, and the stars diminish their brightness. (11) The Lord gives voice before His army, for His camp is very great; for strong is the One who executes His word. For the day of the Lord is great and very terrible; who can endure it? (Joel 2:10-11 –NKJV).
And I will show wonders in the heavens and in the earth: Blood and fire and pillars of smoke. (31) The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the coming of the great and awesome day of the Lord. (32) And it shall come to pass that whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved. For in Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there shall be deliverance, as the Lord has said, among the remnant whom the Lord calls (Joel 2:30-32 – NKJV).
Multitudes, multitudes in the valley of decision! For the day of the Lord is near in the valley of decision. (15) The sun and moon will grow dark, and the stars will diminish their brightness. (16) The Lord also will roar from Zion, and utter His voice from Jerusalem; The heavens and earth will shake; but the Lord will be a shelter for His people, and the strength of the children of Israel (Joel 3:14-16 –NKJV).
Woe to you who desire the day of the Lord! For what good is the day of the Lord to you? It will be darkness, and not light. (19) It will be as though a man fled from a lion, And a bear met him! Or as though he went into the house, Leaned his hand on the wall, And a serpent bit him! (20) Is not the day of the Lord darkness, and not light? Is it not very dark, with no brightness in it? (Amos 5:18-20 NKJV).
The great day of the Lord is near; it is near and hastens quickly. The noise of the day of the Lord is bitter; there the mighty men shall cry out. (15) That day is a day of wrath, a day of trouble and distress, a day of devastation and desolation, a day of darkness and gloominess, a day of clouds and thick darkness, (16) a day of trumpet and alarm against the fortified cities and against the high towers. (17) “I will bring distress upon men, and they shall walk like blind men, because they have sinned against the Lord; their blood shall be poured out like dust, and their flesh like refuse.” (18) Neither their silver nor their gold shall be able to deliver them in the day of the Lord’s wrath; but the whole land shall be devoured by the fire of His jealousy, for He will make speedy riddance of all those who dwell in the land. (2:1) Gather yourselves together, yes, gather together, O undesirable nation, (2) Before the decree is issued, or the day passes like chaff, before the Lord’s fierce anger comes upon you, before the day of the Lord’s anger comes upon you! (3) Seek the Lord, all you meek of the earth, who have upheld His justice. Seek righteousness, seek humility. It may be that you will be hidden in the day of the Lord’s anger (Zephaniah 1:14-2:3 –NKJV).
But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat; both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up. (11) Therefore, since all these things will be dissolved, what manner of persons ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness, (12) looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be dissolved, being on fire, and the elements will melt with fervent heat? (13) Nevertheless we, according to His promise, look for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells (2 Peter 3:10-13 –NKJV).
But concerning the times and the seasons, brethren, you have no need that I should write to you. (2) For you yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so comes as a thief in the night. (3) For when they say, “Peace and safety!” then sudden destruction comes upon them, as labor pains upon a pregnant woman. And they shall not escape. (4) But you, brethren, are not in darkness, so that this Day should overtake you as a thief (1 Thessalonians 5:1-4 – NKJV).