WHAT IS ESCHATOLOGY? “ESCHATOS” in Greek means the end. ESCHATOLOGY therefore refers to the Doctrine or Study of the end times. REASONS FOR STUDYING ESCHATOLOGY It is affords us an insight into God’s plan for mankind. It shows us the conduct we need to put to fulfill God’s will for mankind. It reveals to us the relevance of the future on the present. The study helps us to nurture the proper attitude to the 2nd coming. Believe His coming. 1 Thess 4:14 Pray for His coming. Matt. 6:10; Rev. 22:20. Love His coming. 2 Tim. 4:8 Preach His coming. 2 Tim. 4:1,2 Watch for His coming. 1 Thess 5:6 Expect His coming. Rom. 8:19,23 Look for His coming. Mark 13:35: Titus 2:13 Wait for His coming. 1 Thess 1:10; 2 Thess 3:5 Do not despise His coming. 2 Peter 3:3, 4 Hasten His coming. 2 Peter 1:16 Power of His coming. 2 Peter 1:16 Live His coming. Phil. 3:20 Unashamed at His coming. John 2:28 It gives us hope and strength through the present trials and tribulations. The study helps us to nurture the proper attitude to the 2nd coming. GOD’S TIME PLAN FOR MANKIND God has revealed Himself in different dispensations to man. A dispensation is a moral or probationary period of angelic or human history during which God deals with angels, and men according to a test or responsibility, under which each is supposed to remain true to his trust of administering affairs for God under His direction. THE DISPENSATIONS The Dispensation of Angels: Angels were given rulership under God to administer the will of God and rule the earth and other planets. Isaiah 14:1214; Eze. 28:11-17; Rev. 12:7-10; 20:10 - From time earth was created in angelic presence to time of chaos and defeat of satan. THE DISPENSATION OF INNOCENCE (Gen 2:8-25; 3:2) Man placed on probation to remain true to his trust under favourable conditions. THE DISPENSATION OF CONSCIENCE (Gen. 3:228:14) Man was tested to see whether he will obey his own conscience regarding right or wrong. Man given freedom to do as he pleased. THE DISPENSATION OF HUMAN GOVERNMENT. Gen. 8:15; Rev. 19:10 Human laws and human government were instituted to regulate man’s life after a period of freedom of conscience. Than was given responsibility for self government. THE DISPENSATION OF PROMISE. Gen. 12:1; Ex 12:37. God made promises under the covenant with Abraham and his seed. THE DISPENSATION OF LAW God gave laws to Moses as part of the rule of faith. God’s people were to obey Him, and make a commonwealth of nations headed by Israel and governed by His chosen men. THE DISPENSATION OF GRACE (CHURCH AGE) The fullness of Grace was brought by Jesus (John 1:16-17). God purpose is to save all men who believe and call out for Himself a people and build His Church. John 3:16, Eph. 2:14-22. THE CURRENT CHURCH AGE The Church Age has seven different expressions of churches: 1. The Ephesian Church (Rev. 2:1-7). The church without its first love. 2. The Myrne Church (Rev. 2:8-11): The persecuted church 3. The Pergamum Church (Rev. 2:12-17): The corrupt Church in marriage to the world. 4. The Thyatira Church (Rev. 2:18-29: The compromising or Permissive church 5. The Sardis Church (Rev. 3:1-6): The Church with Reputation but dying. 6. The Philadelphia Church (Rev. 3:713): The Faithful and Living Church. 7. The Laodicea Church (Rev. 3:14-22): The Rich Church characteristics of the Church Age. Which type of church do you belong to? The Church Age has these key characteristics: It has a fulfilled promise of the Holy Spirit sent to her. It has a fulfilled release of ascension ministries to the Church. It has a major expectation of Jesus’ second coming. THE SIGNS OF THE TIMES (Matt. 24:3-15) Many shall come in my Name Some shall say “I am Christ” Wars and Rumors of War Nations rise against Nations and Kingdoms against Kingdoms. Famines and Pestilences Earthquakes in diverse places Deliver you to be afflicted and kill Ye shall be hated of nations for my name’s sake Many shall be offended Many shall betray one another Many shall hate one another Many false prophets shall rise and deceive many. Iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold. The gospel shall be preached in all the world. 2 Tim. 3:1-7 Perilous times shall come Men shall be lovers of themselves Covetous, Boasters, Proud, Blasphemers Disobedient, without natural affection, Traitors, Hendy, Highminded Despisers of those that are good Lovers of pleasure more than lovers of God Form of godliness but deny power Lead captive silly women laden with sins Ever learning and never come to the knowledge of truth. Luke 21:25, Dan. 12:4 Many shall run to and fro Knowledge shall be increased Israel regathered and restored (Isaiah 43:5-6; Jer. 30:3; Eze. 34:11-13; 36:34; 37:1-14) Reuniting of the Roman Empire ( Babylon, Medo Persia, Greece and Rome have all ruled the world before. Dan 2 and 7) The rebuilding of the Temple (Dan 9:27; 12:11, Matt. 24:15). Preparations are under way in Israel to rebuild the Temple. THE RAPTURE The term Rapture per se, does not appear in the Bible, but it refers to the phenomenon of being caught up to meet a descending Jesus in the air – 1 Thess. 4:7 Rapture is derived from the Latin, “rapere”, i.e. caught up. The Greek is harpazo. John 14:1-3; 1 Thess. 4:13-17; and 1 Cor. 15:51-53. The Rapture involves the following: A Realisation (1 Thess. 4:13) A Repose. 1 Thess. 4:14 A Revelation. 1 Thess. 4:15a A Return. 1 Thess. 4:10 A Resurrection. 1 Thess. 4:16 A Removal. 1 Thess. 4:17a A Reunion. 1 Thess. 4:17 A Reassurance. 1 Thess. 4:18 REASONS FOR THE RAPTURE To escape God’s wrath. 1 Thess. 1:10; 5:9 To receive our rewards. 2 Cor. 5:10 To participate in the marriage supper of the Lamb. Rev. 19:7 To escape the wrath of the antichrist. Dan 12:7 To be united as one family. John 10:16 To join God’s powerful army. Rev. 6:15 To escape the cataclysmic events. Luke 21:25 The trumpet of God will summon us to battle and worship as in the Old Testament. Num 10:1-4 The Rapture is Different Event from the Second Coming (Return of Christ) THE RAPTURE THE RETURN (SECOND COMING OF CHRIST) Christ comes in the air ( 1 Thess. 4:1617) Christ returns to the earth. Zech. 14:4 Christ comes for His Saints Christ comes with His Saints. 1 Thess. 3:13; Jude 14 Christ claims His bride Christ comes with His bride Not in the Old Testament In the Old Testament No sign Many signs A time of blessing and comfort. 1 Thess. 4:18 A time of destruction and judgement. 2 Thess. 2:8-12 Involves believers only (John 14:1-3; 1 Cor. 15:51-55; 1 Thess. 4:13-18) Involves Israel and the Gentile nations. Matt. 24:1-25, 46 Only the elect will see Christ. 1Cor. 15:51-52 Will be visible to the entire world. Matt. 24:27; Rev. 1:7 Signals the beginning of the tribulation Signals the beginning of the millennium Christ comes as the bright morning star Christ comes as the sun of Righteousness. Mal. 4:2 Rapture imminent Can only occur after 7 years Before day of wrath (tribulation) After tribulation No mention of satan Satan buried in abyss for 1000years The Rapture, i.e. the Blessed Hope (Titus 2:13) has no set date. Matt. 24:42,44; 25:13; Acts 1:7; Rev. 1:1,3; 3:11; 22:7,12,20. EFFECTS OF THE RAPTURE A converting influence (Col. 2:14; 1 Peter 3:18) A caring influence (2 Cor. 5:20) A cleansing influence ( 1 John 3:2-3) A calming influence (John 4:1-3) A comforting influence ( 1 Thess. 4:13-14) A controlling influence (1 Cor. 15:28) RAPTURE PASSAGES JOHN 14:1-3 1 THESS. 1:10 HEB. 9:8 ROM. 8:19 1 THESS. 2:19 JAMES 5:7-9 1 COR. 1:7-8 1 THESS. 4:13-18 1 PETER 1:7,13 1 COR. 15:51-58 1 THESS. 5:9,23 1 PETER 5:4 1 COR. 16:22 2 THESS. 2:1 1 JOHN 2:28-3,2 PHIL. 3:20-21 1 TIM. 6:14 JUDE 1:21 PHIL 4:5 2 TIM. 4:1,8 REV. 2:25 COL. 3:4 TITUS REV. 3:10 SECOND COMING PASSAGES DAN 2:44-45 MARK 13:14-27 1 PETER 4:12-13 DAN 7:9-14 MARK 14:62 2 PETER 3:1-14 DAN 12:1-3 LUKE 21:25-28 JUDE 1:14-15 ZECH 12:10 ACTS 1:9-11 REV . 1:7 ZECH. 14:1-15 ACTS 3:19-21 REV. 19:11-20; 6 MATT. 13:41 1 THESS. 3:13 REV. 22:7, 12,20 MATT. 24:15-31 2 THESS. 1:6-10 MATT. 26:64 2 THESS 2:8 SUMMARY OF EVENTS OF THE RAPTURE The Lord Himself will descend from His father’s house, where He is preparing a place for us. (John 14:1-3; 1 Thess. 4:16) He will come to receive us to Himself (John 14:1-3) He resurrects those who have fallen asleep in Him. 1 Thess. 4:14-15. The Lord shouts as He descends, all in a twinkling of an eye. We will hear the voice of the archangel (1 Thess. 4:16) We will hear the trumpet call of God. 1 Thess. 4:16 The dead in Christ will rise first. 1 Thess. 4:16-17 Those who are alive and remain shall be changed. 1 Cor. 15:51,53 Then shall we be caught together (1 Thess. 4:17) With them in the clouds we have a reunion To meet the Lord in the air (1 Thess. 4:17) To receive you to myself (John 14:3) Thus shall we with the Lord (1 Thess 4:1) The judgement seat of Christ. Roman 14:10; 2 Cor. 5:10; 1 Cor. 3:11-15 The marriage supper of the Lamb follows, whilst the world suffers great tribulation. Matt. 24:21 EVENTS OF THE 2ND COMING Immediately after the tribulation. Matt. 24:29 Cosmic phenomena in sun, moon and stars (Matt.24:29) Heavens returns Christ appears in white horse (Rev. 19:11) Followed by armies of heaven. Rev. 19:14 Sign of Son of Man in heaven seen by everyone (Matt. 24:30) Coming in great power and glory. Matt. 24:30 Unbelievers will mourn (Matt. 24:30) Beast (Antichrist and armies) confront Christ. Rev.19:19 Christ casts Beast and false Prophet in lake of fire. Rev. 19:20 Christ rejecters killed. Rev. 19:21 Satan cast in bottomless pit for 1000 years (Rev. 20:1-3) Resurrection of Old Testament and Tribulation saints (Matt. 24:31; Rev. 20:4) Christ judges nations and establishes His Kingdom. Matt. 25. EVENTS IN HEAVEN AFTER THE RAPTURE There will be two main Events in Heaven after the Rapture. These are: 1. Appearance before the Bema (Judgement seat of Christ) 2. The Marriage supper of the Lamb. THE BEMA SEAT (JUDGEMENT SEAT) The Greek Bema translated Judgement seat, was not a judicial bench for condemnation. In the Greek Olympics, the Bema was the seat where winners met to receive their rewards or crowns. The Christian life is a race (Heb. 12:1); 2 Tim. 4:7; 1 Cor. 9:24-26) Thus at the Bema, believers will meet to receive their crowns from Jesus. 2 Cor. 5:10; Rom. 14:10-12; Gal. 6:7; Col. 3:24, 25; Heb. 10:30. LET US DIFFERENTIATE SOME OF THE VARIOUS TYPES OF JUDGEMENT IN THE BIBLE. Judgement of sins in the believer. 1 Cor. 11:31,32; 1 Tim. 1:20 (self judgement by Christian) Judgement Seat of Christ. 2 Cor. 5:20 Judgement upon the cross Judgement of Jews. Zech. 12:10 (Israel will be judged to see how they related to God (Rev 12) Judgement of living Nations ( Isaiah 2:4; Joel 3:12; Matt. 13:41,42 – to see how nations treated Israel The Great White Throne Judgement: Rev. 20:7-10; Matt. 10:15; Acts 2:20 The main difference between the Bema and the Great White Throne is that at the Bema only believers will stand and be rewarded. At the Great White Throne, the unsaved will also stand to determine degree of punishment in hell. At the Bema Seat, our work will pass through fire to determine how it fares. 1 Cor. 3:10,12,13. our work is classified as gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble. Some burns, others don’t. The things God will look for in the believers include: Our Attitude to other believers. Heb. 6:10, Matt. 10:41,42. How we exercise and handle authority. Heb. 13:17; James 3:1 How we use our God given talents and gifts. 1 Cor. 12:4,11; 1 Peter 4:10; Luke 19:11-26 How we use our money. 1 Cor. 16:2; 2 Cor. 9:6,7; 1 Tim. 6:17-19 How we spend our time. Psalm 90:12; Eph. 5:16; Col. 4:5; 1 Peter 1:17. How we suffer for Christ. Matt. 5:11,12; Mark 10:29,30; Rom. 8:18; 2 Cor. 4:17; 1Peter 4:12,13. Hospitality. Matt. 25:35-36; Luke 14:12-14 Spiritual Disciplines. Matt. 6:3-5, 17-18 Faithfulness in our vocation. Col.3:22-24 Living the undeserving of love. Luke 6:27-28,35 Doctrinal Integrity. 2 John 1,8 Investing in people. 1 Thess. 2:19; 1Cor. 3:6-8 Our motives will be judged. 1 Cor. 4:3-5 Our words will be judged. Matt. 12:36 Our thoughts and intentions. Heb. 4:12-13 Watching for the return of Christ. Luke 12:35- 38 How we run the race. 1Cor. 9:24; Phil. 2:16; Phil. 3:13,14; Heb. 12:1,2. He we control our body. 1 Cor. 9:25-27 How are witness for Christ. Prov. 11:30; Dan. 12:3; 1Thess. 2:19,20. How we react to temptation. James 1:2,3; Rev. 2:10 How we love His imminent coming. 2 Tim. 4:8 How faithful we are to God’s Word and His flock. Acts 20:26-28; 2 Tim. 4:1,2; 1 Peter 5:2-4 CHARACTERISTICS OF THE JUDGEMENT Fairly Thoroughly Impartially Individually Graciously RESULTS AT THE BEMA JUDGEMENT SEAT Some will be rewarded. 1 Cor. 3:14 Others will suffer loss. 1Cor. 3:15; Col. 2:18; 2John 1:8; Rev. 3:11. THE CROWNS AT THE BEMA The Incorruptible Crown – for those who are able to control the body. 1 Cor. 9:25-27 The Crown of Rejoicing – for soul winners. Prov. 11:30; Dan. 12:3; 1Thess. 2:19,20 The Crown of Life – for those who successfully endure temptation (James 1:2,3, Rev. 2:10) The Crown of Righteousness – for those who love the Rapture and look forward to it (2 Tim. 4:6-8) The Crown of Glory – For faithful preachers and teachers, parties of the flock. Acts 20:26-28; 2 Tim. 4:1,2; 1 Peter 5:2-4. Apart from the Crowns, believers at the Bema receive special privileges: Eating of tree of life. Rev. 2:7 Not hurt by 2nd death. Rev. 2:11 Hidden manna, white stone, new Name. rev. 2:17 Authority over nations. Rev. 2:26 A pillar in the h0use of God, and name of the God and city written upon him. Rev. 3:12 BELIEVERS WILL ALSO RECEIVE SPECIAL HONOURS Ruling over the earth in the millennial kingdom. Dan 7:18 We will judge the earth and angels. 1 Cor. 6:2-3 EXPECTATIONS FROM YOU NOW Run the race to run well Run the race according to rules Be disciplined know the direction, be determined to stay focussed.