Prophecy – prophesies-yet-to-be-fulfilled
This information is taken directly from the Jeremiah Study Bible and his commentary in 2 Peter 1:20-21.
Dr. Jeremiah begins by defining two purposes of prophecy, which I found most enlightening. Prophesy can foretell and forthtell.
FORETELL – is to be predictive; it describes something that will happen in the future.
FORTHTELL – is prescriptive; it speaks forth the truth of God, for the future, but for today, for the purposes of “strengthening, encouraging, and comfort” (1 Cor 14:3)
Plunging Ahead Prophecy – prophesies-yet-to-be-fulfill
So, as we begin our look at the Shadows of Future Events, I will summarize them first, before we plunge into greater detail. Some of these I’ve already touched upon in my blogs, so I will refer to those postings, and others we will pursue later.
One other important note that Dr. Jeremiah tells us is that prophecy is not meant to satisfy our curiosity, or allow us to go our merry way until the last possible moment, but rather to motivate us to holy living, now, today, and every day forward. By our example, we will lift up the people of God, confirming their commitment to follow Christ and his teachings to us.
1. The Rapture of the Church Prophecy – prophesies-yet-to-be-fulfill
As I discussed in a two-part earlier post, (June 24&26, 2021 on The Rapture), the Rapture is when Christ comes to gather both the deceased and the living Christians to Himself, in the clouds (1 Thess. 4:13-18). Understand, this can happen at any time, or as Dr. Jeremiah puts it, is imminent. Since all prophesies leading up to the Rapture have been fulfilled, nothing else needs to happen to bring this about. Therefore, at that time, Christ will appear in the clouds and will call those who believe upon him, who are called by his name, to himself. He will remove them from the earth and take them to heaven, to be with him, as he promised (John 14:1-3)
2. The Rise of the Antichrist (Prophesies yet to be fulfilled)
The removal of the church, with is all the believers, from the earth is the RAPTURE. This very event will signal the rise of the Antichrist to prominence. His aggressive tactics will be merciless as he rises to power, overcoming other leaders and becoming the world leader. He will negotiate a seven-year protective peace treaty with Israel, seemingly doing the impossible, for Israel has known little to no peace. But, halfway through, he will break that treaty, set himself up as one to be worshiped, and pursue a policy of Jewish extermination. (This is known as the Great Tribulation.)
3. The Tribulation
Those who are not removed from the earth by the Rapture will have to live through this horribly difficult time – The Time of Jacob’s Trouble. It will be a time of great trouble and distress, for seven years. There are two halves to the Tribulation period. The first 3 and 1/2 years are the start of the Tribulation, while the second half is known as the Great Tribulation. (Jer. 30:7; Dan. 12:1; Matt. 24:21).
4. The Second Coming of Christ
During the seven years of the Tribulation Period, the Antichrist will have unprecedented power to rule the world. He will wreak havoc upon the earth and know no mercy. Finally, a great war will be fought at the end of that time, where the Antichrist will strive to destroy the people of God. However, Christ will return with the “armies of heaven” (Rev. 19:14) and will overcome the Antichrist, who will be “thrown alive into the fiery lake of burning sulfur” (Rev. 19:20). Christ is victorious and will be recognized as the true King of the entire earth, setting up his millennial reign (Rev. 20:4-6)
5. The Millennium
This is the time of Christ’s rule as the one and only, true King of the whole world. It will be a time of universal peace and blessings. According to John, he foresaw it lasting a thousand years (Rev 20:1-6).
6. The Great White Throne Judgment
At the end of the Millennium, Christ will judge all humans whether they are His followers and those who have failed to respond to God’s offer of salvation (Rev. 20:11-15).
I will need to do more research, but I believe this is the judgment of all who have ever lived and died and those who are still alive. BUT, is it possible that we (humans) will live with Christ (God) as the King; He will dwell among us; we will know peace; YET, some will still reject his offer of salvation, and will be judged accordingly?
OR, is it the one final judgment of all peoples of the earth, but those living in the millennium, although judged, will know salvation and eternity??? I’m just not clear on that… at least not yet.
7. The New Heaven and New Earth
In Revelation 21:1-22:6, John describes the new heaven and the new earth, with the appearance of the new Jerusalem. It is the start of eternity, where God’s people will enjoy unending life in the very presence of God (the Father) and the Lamb (Jesus Christ). God’s plan for his creation and his people will be finally fulfilled.
All of these yet unfulfilled prophesies cast a shadow into our present day. The greatest shadow being cast is the coming Rapture of the Church. It will be a tremendous wake-up call for all those who doubt the word of God and have brushed it off. It will be a wake-up call to those who have rejected the word of God, and consciously chosen to follow their desires and will.
The world will know the truth.
But, those who hear the truth and have accepted Christ, have nothing to fear. You will not need to be concerned with the details of all the prophesied events after the rapture, for you will be with Christ in heaven.
Make the right choice. Choose the path of light… the truth of God.
Jeremiah Study Bible: https://www.davidjeremiah.org/jeremiahstudybible/store