I understand that when Jesus comes that it will be the Second
hasn't that already happened? (when he defeated death) If he comes again
wouldn't it be the Third time? It just seems when I read in Acts that it is
referred that the Second Coming has already taken place. It's been a while since I read it so I'm reading it again
No ! the second coming has not
occurred. When Jesus rose from the dead he had
not left the earth. His body had been in the tomb until he arose, and he did not leave the earth until 40 days after his resurrection. In fact when he arose he told Mary Magdalene that he had not yet ascended to the Father. In Acts 1:11 the disciples watching him disappear in the clouds were told that he would come again just like he had left (in the clouds). So when he comes like he promised in John 14:1-4 it will be His second coming.
A lot of people I know believe that God will rapture the Church in there
lifetime- is that just belief or what? And do you know anyone that I could
talk to to study the book of revelation and Philippians?
The rapture is a segment of the doctrine of premillennialism. Proponents of premillennialism teach that there is yet to be a future establishment of the kingdom of Christ on earth during which the Lord will be ruling on earth. The New Testament nowhere teaches that there will be a future establishment of the kingdom, but rather the opposite. Christians are already in the kingdom; it now exists.
1) Colossians 1:13, "…hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son."
2) Hebrews 12:28, "Wherefore we receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved…."
3) Revelation 1:9, "I John, who also am your brother, and companion in tribulation, and in the kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ…." All of these passages speak of the kingdom in the present tense, not future. Basically the doctrine of the rapture is that there will be a coming of Christ at which time all Christians will be removed from the earth. There will be a seven-year period of tribulation, and then Jesus will come again and establish His kingdom. Some say the first coming will be a secret one, but the Bible NOWHERE speaks of a secret coming of Christ. Revelation 1:7 very plainly says every eye will see Him, and this passage speaks of only one coming, not two. One of the passages often cited by these people to "prove" the rapture theory is 1 Thessalonians 4:14-17, "For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.
For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not precede them which are asleep. 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 shall 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." This passage actually teaches
1) that the dead shall rise first,
2) Jesus does not return to the earth, and
3) when we meet Him in the air that is where we will be with Him forever. The rapture is merely a fanciful theory developed to help support the doctrine of premillennialism, neither of which the Bible in any way whatsoever teaches or supports.
1. I do not know what Jubilee 2000 is unless it is something some religious group is promoting.
2. The Year of Jubilee, the word means to be jubilant or to exult, was the fiftieth year after 7 cycles of seven years when special instructions about property and slavery took effect, Leviticus 25:8-55. The year began with the blast of a rams horn on the Day of Atonement and was to be a special year to proclaim liberty throughout all the land, Leviticus 25:10. There was no sowing or reaping; thus the land was free. Those who had sold themselves into slavery because of debts were released and their debts were canceled. Land that had been lost because of debts was returned to the family that had lost it. God established the year to keep the Israelites from oppressing one another, Leviticus 25:17 and to help prevent permanent class distinctions.
3. As far as I know nothing is being or to be celebrated in the year 2000. There is no special religious significance to the year.
4. There may be some religious groups who are planning something. However, this was strictly part of the Jewish Law and was not carried over under the Law of Christ.
Many churches talk about Revelation as telling when Jesus will come back to earth and set up a "thousand year reign" and the beast, 666, etc. What is it talking about?
Much of the book of Revelation is written in highly figurative language called apocalyptic. This highly figurative language was used to convey ideas and was not meant to be interpreted literally. Some of the symbols involve the use of numbers, such as the two mentioned in this question. The thousand-year reign is found in Rev. 20:4. Those who believe that Jesus will reign on earth for a literal 1,000 years, if they are honest with the scriptures, will have some problems with this verse. First, this verse nowhere speaks of a reign on earth. Second, if this is a literal 1,000 years, then the only people who can reign with Christ are those who have been beheaded for the cause of Christ. You see, if we take one part of this verse and make it literal, then we have to make all of it literal, and those folks arent willing to do that. And while I am on the number 1,000 and whether to take it literally or not, the Bible says in Psalm 50:10 that "the cattle on a thousands hills " belongs to God. Now who is willing to say that God only owns the cattle on a thousand hills? I dare say no one, we would say he owns it all. We therefore need to be careful when we start making numbers literal or figurative.
We need to let the Bible interpret itself rather than bringing our fanciful interpretations to it and trying to force them on the Bible. Also, this verse doesnt say Christ began His reign at that point, merely that those folks began to reign with Him. And besides all that, Col. 1:13 and Rev. 1:9 all speak of the kingdom as already being in existence, and 1 Cor. 15:24-25 and Eph. 1:20-22, as well as other verses, speak Jesus now reigning. 666 is another of those highly figurative numbers. Found in Rev. 13:18, it is designated as the mark of the beast. However, this verse refers to it as the number of the beast, not the mark. There have been all kinds of interpretations of this number in which people have tried to identify it as a particular person. Some of the interpretations include Nero, Martin Luther, Hitler, and even Henry Kissinger. Again, the number is a symbol. Throughout Revelation the number 7 is used of perfection. 6 falls below seven, it can never reach perfection. To give the number 6-6-6 is to say that anything opposed to God is doomed to utter failure. Therefore we should not be trying to find an actual person in this number but the realization that if I am opposed to God and His purposes I will fail.
What time of the Revelation are we in and quote what verse holds up your answer?
Revelation was written to the persecuted saints of the first century to reassure them that neither Rome nor the devil would destroy the church. Even though some would die for their faith, ultimately the saints will be victorious and enjoy the glories of heaven. The message is an encouragement to the church today because it helps us see that we, too, will ultimately triumph over Satan and the grave. The book has two major sections. Chapter's 4-11 speak of the church's conflict with the world, Rome in particular. Chapters 12-22 speak of the real conflict, the conflict of Christ and His church against Satan. Within these sections are a series of parallels which repeat the same message, only from a different perspective.
The church of today would naturally be seen in the future sense in those passages picturing the marriage of the bride and the lamb and where the saints are pictured as victorious in heaven. The church right now would fit into the following passages. 1) 7:4-8 - here the 144,000 are pictured on earth, the 144,000 representing the church on earth at any given time. 2) 11:3-13 - here the church is pictured as the lampstand which holds up the word of truth, which she has done through all generations. 3) 20:7 - here Satan is loosed after being bound for 1,000 years. He had been defeated in his use of Rome to persecute the church, but he will attack the church in other ways in the future (he is loosed).
Will the Rapture occur before, during or at the end of the tribulation period? We have heard different Pastors say these. Which is Biblically correct?
Your question regarding the "Rapture" is interesting. Actually the
Rapture is a theological delusion, a figment of the imagination, a spin-off of the
illusory and vain theories of Premillennialism. It is false in all of its parts. It is
based on the allegation that the return of Christ will usher in a millennial reign in
which Christ will occupy an earthly throne in Jerusalem and that immediately prior to
these events he will secretly take out of the world his saints for a period of seven years
(during which time a great Tribulation will fall upon the ungodly who are left behind),
and following which he will return to earth, establish his kingdom and rule in regal
splendor over a material and earthly kingdom.
No essential element of the "Rapture" theory is true.
(1) It seeks support for the "catching away" of the saints in I Thessalonians 4:15-18, but this passage deals with the final return of Christ, when the saints will indeed be "caught away" from the earth but FOREVERMORE, and not for only seven years.
(2) Neither here, nor elsewhere in the Bible, is there the faintest suggestion of a secret or public rapture of seven years.
(3) The Thessalonians scriptures conclusively prove that the Lord will never actually PUT HIS FOOT ON THIS EARTH AGAIN; his appearing will be on the clouds from which he will call the saints away from the earth.
(4) There will be no earth here from the time of catching away of the saints since this earth following that event will perish in the fires of the Last Great Day.
(5) The "new heaven and earth" to which the saints will be carried is identified in John 14:2 as that place where out Lord now is preparing "a place" for us and to which he will take us at the end of the age.
(6) Far from BEGINNING his reign and establishing an earthly kingdom at his return, he
will END his reign and "deliver up" the kingdom to his Father when he returns on
The sharp contrast which obtains between the Premillennial theory and the clear, decisive teaching of the scriptures is easily seen in paralleling the two positions.
THE PREMILLENNIAL VIEW: THE SCRIPTURES:
1. Christ is NOT now reigning 1. Christ is now reigning (1 Corinthians 15:25)
2. Christ will BEGIN his reign at his return. 2. Christ will END his reign at his return (1 Corinthians 15:28)
3. Christ will establish a kingdom at his return. 3. Christ kingdom will terminate at his return. (I Corinthians 15:24)
Events of the last day and their order are:
1. The dead, both righteous and wicked, will be raised. (John 5:28,29)
2. The judgment will follow. (Revelation 20:12-15)
3. The saints will be carried to heaven, the wicked sent to hell. Matthew 25:41-46)
4. Christ will give his kingdom to God. (1 Corinthians 15:24)
5. The earth will disappear in the all consuming fires of the judgment of God upon the wicked world. (2 Peter 3:10
I would like to know more about the thousand year reign. I am very confused about
The 1,000 year reign of Christ on earth is based on Revelation 20:4. Much Revelation is written in highly figurative language that was used to convey ideas and was not meant to be interpreted literally. Some of the symbols involve the use of numbers, as in this verse. Those who believe that Jesus will reign on earth for a literal 1,000 years, if they are honest with the scriptures, will have some problems with this verse.
1) A number of things are not mentioned here: the second coming of Christ, a bodily resurrection, a reign of Christ on earth, the literal throne of David, Jerusalem of Palestine, the conversion of the Jews, or the church on earth. All of these figure into the future kingdom/thousand year reign theory, but they have to be imported into the verse because they are not found there.
2) If this is a literal 1,000 years, the only people who can reign with Christ are those who have been beheaded for the cause of Christ. What about those who died in other ways, including natural causes? If one part of this verse is literal, then all of it should be literal. If not, why not? However, those who hold to the literal 1,000-year reign of Christ will not accept this. The Bible says in Psalm 50:10 that "the cattle on a thousand hills " belong to God. Who is willing to say that God only owns the cattle on a thousand hills? Surely no one would, He owns it all. One, therefore, should be careful when making numbers literal or figurative.
3) This verse does not say Christ began His reign at that point, merely that those folks began to reign with Him.
4) Colossians 1:13 and Revelation 1:9 all speak of the kingdom as already in existence.
5) 1 Corinthians 15:24-25 and Ephesians 1:20-22, as well as other verses, all say Jesus is now reigning. Thus, Revelation 20:4 is saying that these Christians who have suffered at the hands of Rome, though they may have lost their lives, really are victorious. The reigning with Christ a thousand years shows their complete and perfect victory over Satan.
The binding of Satan for one thousands years, vs. 2, and the thousand year reign here both speak of the same thing from different angles. Satan being bound for a thousand years speaks of his utter and absolute defeat in using Rome against God's people. The saints reigning for a thousand years speaks of total victory and triumph in the battle against Rome and ultimately Satan.
Has the kingdom of Christ already been established, or will Jesus return at some point in the future to set up a 1,000-year reign on earth?
In addition to several passages in Daniel, the millennial kingdom theory is mainly based on Revelation 20:4, "And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years." It must be noted that none of the following are mentioned in this verse: the second coming of Christ, a bodily resurrection, a reign of Christ on earth, the literal throne of David, Jerusalem of Palestine, the conversion of the Jews, or the church on earth. All of these figure into the future kingdom theory, but they have to be imported into this text, they arent found there. Note the following:
1) When Jesus began his ministry, he preached that the kingdom of heaven was at hand. Some 2,000 years or more into the future seems to really stretch the meaning of "at hand", doesnt it?
2) Right before the transfiguration Jesus told those who were gathered with him that some of those present would not die until they saw the kingdom come with power, Mark 9:1. Either the kingdom has come or we have some people on earth today who are 2,000 years old or Jesus lied.
3) Before his ascension back into heaven Jesus promised the apostles they would receive power with the coming of the Holy Spirit, and forty days later the Holy Spirit came, Acts 1:6-8; 2:1-4. After this point in time Gods people are spoken of as being IN the kingdom, Colossians 1:13; Hebrews 12:28; Revelation 1:9.
Daniel is told to shut up the words of his vision and his book, Daniel 8:26; 12:4. He is even told to seal the book. Why? The prophecies relate to many days, that is, many days in the future. When we come to the prophecies of Revelation, John is told NOT to seal them up because the time is at hand, 22:10 (see also Revelation 1:1, 3; 22:6). Now here is a strange thing. Daniel was told to seal up his book because it related to things many days in the future, and those things occurred 400 years later. John was told not to seal up his book because it related to things that were at hand. Yet millennialists would have us believe that those prophecies are still waiting to be fulfilled, now 1900 years later! How in the world can you reconcile this?
A literal 1,000 year reign of Christ on earth is based on Revelation 20:4. If 1,000 is a literal number, then the only ones who can reign with Christ are those who have been beheaded for their faith. What about those who died in other ways, including natural causes? If one thing is literal in the verse, everything has to be literal, and if not, why not? Who has the right to decide what is literal and what isnt? The number 1,000 is figurative like the other numbers in Revelation.
In addition, the following passages teach that JESUS IS NOW RULING: Matthew 28:18; Ephesians 1:20-22; 1 Peter 3:22; Revelation 2:27; and 1 Corinthians 15:20-25. Also, John 3:5, Colossians 1:13 and Revelation 1:9 all use the term kingdom in a way which can only refer to the church. The Bible just does not support a future earthly kingdom theory.
RESOURCES FOR INDEPTH STUDY-
1) Truth, the Millenium, and the Battle of Armageddon, Leslie G. Thomas, The Gospel Advocate Company, Nashville, Tennessee, 1-800-251-8446
2) The Spiritual Sword, Volume 9, Number 1, October, 1977, "Premillennialism Part 1", contact the Getwell Church of Christ, 1511 Getwell Road, Memphis, TN 38111
3) The Spiritual Sword, Volume 9, Number 2, January, 1978, "Premillennialism Part 2", same address
4) Jim McGuiggan, The Kingdom of God and the Planet Earth, 1978. Contact The Gospel Advocate Company or Sunset School of Preaching, 34th and Memphis, Lubbock, TX 79410. Bro. McGuiggan taught at this school.
Premillennialism, True or False?, Wendell Winkler, ed., contact The Brown Trail Church of Christ, Bedford, TX, or Winkler Publications, Box 17631, Montgomery, AL 3611-0631
6) Also see the articles at this web site on "666, The Mark of the Beast" and "What does the 144,00 of Revelation Mean?"