After these things I looked, and behold, a great multitude which no one could number, of all nations, tribes, peoples, and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, with palm branches in their hands, and crying out with a loud voice, saying, “Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!” Revelation 7:9-10
The point of the rapture is to put us into the position of power, to reign with Christ as joint-heirs. How we wield that power may surprise you (Psalm 149:1, 6). The assembly of saints sings to the Lord a new song. It is the high praises of God in our mouth that acts like a two-edged sword in our hand. With one mouth and one hand, we co-rule in perfect harmony as the One New Man (Acts 17:31).
The first edge of the sword is what God has already declared as His will—the chronos timing of the end-time events. The second edge of the sword is our song of praise, declaring in agreement His appointed plan. We execute God’s vengeance against evil and the rebellious nations and peoples who rejected God the Father and Jesus Christ His Son.
Wait, there is more. The newly revived nation of Israel cries out as the Antichrist and his coalition of armies invade. “Who will rise up for me against the evildoers? Who will stand up for me against the workers of iniquity?” (Psalm 94:16)
You guessed it, we do! For we have arisen with prevailing strength to stand before the throne for such a time as this. Our two-edged sword also brings deliverance to our new brothers and sisters in Christ. For Israel has finally received their Messiah.
Until that appointed Day, we can use this same two-edged sword as we train for reigning now. The key is to get God’s specific Word for whatever situation we face (known as His rhema word) by the Spirit—the first edge. Then we declare that same Word on earth as it is in Heaven (the matching second edge).
In due season, there comes a time when an eagle has to shed its old feathers in order to grow new, stronger feathers. It soars to a high place of isolation, for when it beats off its old wings, it is most vulnerable. But sheltered in that high place, waiting, its youth is renewed. The new feathers give it renewed power.
Have you not known? Have you not heard? The everlasting God, the Lord, the Creator of the ends of the earth, neither faints nor is weary. His understanding is unsearchable. He gives power to the weak, and to those who have no might He increases strength. Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall, but those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint. Isaiah 40:28-31
In the last blog we focused on the waiting part—earnestly expecting. But there’s more to this than waiting for Christ’s literal return. In the original Hebrew of the Old Testament, the phrase in bold type reads, “those expecting pass to power.”
We rise with prevailing strength, passing to power. That power overcomes death. We mount up to Heaven with wings like eagles and stand before the throne declaring the praises of the Captain of our salvation. The Apostle John describes the heavenly chorus as noises, voices, thunderings, and lightnings. We have passed to power as the immortal government of Heaven, reigning as joint-heirs with our Lord.
This passing to power is the point of the rapture. Yes, we escape the wrath of that Day, and we escape the evil mark of the beast and the command to worship him. Yet that timely deliverance and our prevailing strength to overcome, is what places us in the position of power. As we stand and speak, and stand and sing, we unleash God’s vengeance on evil. Our passing to power destroys the work of the Antichrist and binds the spiritual force behind him—Satan.
Jesus concluded His teaching on the rapture and the end-times with this warning (Luke 21:34-36).
But take heed to yourselves, lest your hearts be weighed down with carousing, drunkenness, and cares of this life, and that Day come on you unexpectedly. For it will come as a snare on all those who dwell on the face of the whole earth. Watch therefore, and pray always that you may be counted worthy to escape all these things that will come to pass, and to stand before the Son of Man.
The Greek word for “pray” here is deomai. It refers to earnestly desiring or longing for deeply. In effect, Jesus was saying “always keep desiring and earnestly looking for My return.” The implication is that for whatever reason, be it scoffers and unbelief, confusion or disagreement in the Church, or the apparent success of evil doers, we could lose heart.
That’s why Jesus also listed the specific kairos signs we will see that signal His coming. “Now when these things begin to happen, look up and lift up your heads, because your redemption draws near.”
So our stance is one of earnest expectation. But then Jesus seems to throw a wrench into our expectation. Is it possible that we could not be counted worthy to be gathered to Him? What exactly does it mean to be “counted worthy?”
We know that the overriding theme of the New Testament is that we are saved by grace through faith. Salvation and every blessing and every promise of the New Covenant comes to us because of Jesus. He exchanged His worthiness for our unworthiness on the cross. Since the promise to “escape and stand” is just one aspect of the “package of salvation,” it belongs to anyone who believes on the Lord Jesus Christ.
So the issue is not a matter of earning our worthiness. Instead, it refers to receiving His strength. The Greek literally reads, “So that you may have the full strength and ability” to escape and stand. The Greek word is katischuo, which describes being thoroughly strong in order to thoroughly prevail.
The book of Revelation links this phrase to those who overcome. Those who are in Christ shall overcome death as He did, through the prevailing power of resurrection. In the meantime, Jesus gave us His authority to prevail now. Putting on the whole armor of God, we stand and say, bolding using our two-edged sword of God’s Word as the Spirit leads.
When Jesus told His disciples of His impending death and resurrection, He explained that He was going away to prepare a place for His Church to be with Him in Father’s House. He assured them that He would return to take us back to that prepared place when He comes at the rapture. He comes when the 7th Day, the Day of the Lord dawns.
“Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid” (John 14:27).
We’re now closing in on the end of the 6th Day. That’s why Satan is working overtime to enthrone his counterfeit kingdom and plunge the world into great darkness. Sometimes standing firm in the peace we have in Christ is not always easy.
I think part of the reason is that few believers understand the full extent of the “good news.” They know little about what the Word says will happen just before Christ comes. They know even less about what the Word says will happen during Christ’s 1,000-year reign over the earth.
This is sad because it robs them of the comfort, hope, and victory that are theirs in Christ. It robs them of the peace that Jesus provided. When we understand the chronos times and the kairos seasons, when our hearts are established in those truths, we can be patient and wait eagerly for His coming and that Day.
In 1 Corinthians 2:9, Paul quotes a passage from Isaiah that talks about that same Day, the Day of the Lord. “Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man the things which God has prepared for those who love Him.” How’s your expectation?
Spoiler Alert: Satan fails! "The kingdoms of this world shall become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign forever and ever!” Revelation 11:15