Today I'd like you to notice so specific wording used in the verse above. In verse 35 we see that a day is coming that will be a snare, but for who? ALL them that dwell on the face of the WHOLE EARTH. So tell me, do you think our God is going to send a snare on his blood bought people (us the body of Christ)? There's really no room for wiggle here because the text says clearly that its for the whole earth..EVERYBODY who walks on the face of the whole earth...
Do you find it curious that the Lord points out to us specifically the spatial location of these people who will be caught in the snare? We are told specifically WHERE these people affected by the snare are located, and where is that? The face of the earth. The words our God uses are not random, each word was crafted with purpose in mind to explain himself to his children, and in this case he has given us graphic detail. We know that its "all people" not some, and we know where they are..specifically on the "face of the earth." And all this graphic detail is pressed up tightly against this command and embedded promise: 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.
Snare....ALL those...face of the whole earth.....pray...worthy....escape. Ask yourself, its really a simple question, will the Lord send a snare on us, the bride of Christ? Yes or no? No need to write a book to answer this..yes or no?
Why mention all people the "face of the earth" if we are all still here? Why not just say "on that day, everyone's going to be caught in a snare?" The implication is...everyone, will NOT be caught in this coming snare, but only all those who exist on the face of the earth at the time the snare arrives. No exceptions are made for anyone on the face of the earth. Of course, if you are not on the face of the earth, but instead "standing before the Son of man" who is where? In heaven, then this snare wouldn't touch you.
And another deathblow to all the other rapture views is this command to "pray always" that we may be counted worthy of this escape. Pray always? Yep, that's what it says. Why not pray for the escape after the abomination that causes desolation? Why not pray for this escape after the tribulation is over? Why pray always? You know why, because this escape is coming BEFORE the snare shows up. Kind of like Noah got into the ark BEFORE the flood showed up. Kind of like how Lot left Sodom BEFORE the fire and brimstone rained down.
Today is a day of eating and drinking, planting and building, marrying and giving in marriage. Today is a "pre-flood" day. The warning signs are all around us to pay attention, to be watching (through prayer-to include prayer for escape). Watching through prayer is how we are ready when our Lord shows up for us. In these last days, many scoffers have shown up, just as our Lord said they would. Many people today say it doesn't matter what your rapture view is, and I'm telling you they are wrong. Why? There's an obedience element to all this. We are servants, told to watch, pray and be ready for our Lord's return for us. You might not think the Lord's return for his bride is a big deal, but I can assure you that he sees that day as a VERY special day. And people say "it doesn't matter?" It doesn't matter that these people refuse to pray for the escape promised? The faithlessness doesn't matter? The disobedience doesn't matter. Stealing people's hope and comfort doesn't matter? Working for the enemy by sowing doubt doesn't matter? Stealing a person's escape (through teaching lies/changing faith/belief-which affects destiny) from the worst period of time this earth has ever seen doesn't matter?
Think about what's going to happen on the day that Jesus comes back for us, and most people are not taken. What kinds of thoughts and questions will be going on in the minds who refused to pray for the escape from all and therefore were not counted worthy of it? Do you think there will be some upset people? Some angry people perhaps wanting to go hunt down all those who taught a lie and cost them an escape from hell on earth? What's going to happen when all these teachers and preachers are still around to "service" people after the escape? Will people still go to be "serviced" after they see with their own eyes that their clergy member is still there to conquer them (Nico-laitan)? What will being left behind mean to these people? Something wasn't right, everyone will know that for a fact on that day. You were left behind for a reason.
Do you think faithlessness, teaching lies, refusal to obey, willful disobedience will be rewarded? This is more than just pointing to some time end times map and pointing to a place on it, its about day in and day out living for, and looking for our Lord. This day we are talking about will be a very special day, a snare for all those on the face of the earth and a day for marveling for us who believe:
2 Thess 1:10 when He comes to be glorified in His saints on that day, and to be marveled at among all who have believed-- for our testimony to you was believed.
This escape will be about much more than some "rapture debate." This is about obedience, belief, faithfulness, and watching through prayer. If the bible defines the bible, and I believe it does, then those who do not believe there is an escape from all, will be rewarded for that by seeing in their own life the fruits of their belief, ie they will not escape from all, just as they believed they wouldn't. But because this is still a pre-flood, pre-snare, pre-fire and brimstone day, you still have a choice. You can still decide. Our master is going to show up someday, and that day may be today in spite of what all the scoffers say. On this special day, maybe today, I plan to be watching, praying what we've been told to pray, believing and ready to greet our Lord when that door swings open and we are staring face to face.
Just as in the days of Noah and Lot...escape from all, kept from the hour of trial, snare on ALL those on the face of the earth, redeemed rewarded men in heaven (rev4-5) (crowns) door open, wise and foolish virgins..door shut..away from me I never knew you...
I want to encourage you today to closely examine what you believe because what you believe means everything. What you believe could mean experiencing 7 years of hell on earth or not. If you do enter the tribulation, that has implications too. If you didn't have the faith to make the escape, will you have the faith to stand in a time of pressure unlike any this world has ever seen? Take the Lord at his word. Even if there was no escape, we would live the same way we are living today, watching for our Lord to show up, living in a way that reflects this expectation of meeting our Lord today. There's alot riding on what you decide.
grace and peace