New to Bible Marking?
With the “Left Behind” movie coming out soon, there may be opportunities for us to talk with others about topics concerning premillennialism, the Rapture, or the end times. While the movie may be entertaining, we want to make sure we understand what the Bible teaches about what will happen when Jesus returns. God wants us to know exactly what will take place and He spells it out for us in His Word.
This movie may generate conversations about Christ’s return, so this month’s Bible-marking topic will look at verses that discuss that very subject. Mark these verses in your Bible so you’ll be ready to converse with your friends about the Second Coming. Teach them to your teens so they won’t be confused by Hollywood. Whether our friends and neighbors are curious or simply enjoy talking about the latest box office hit, let’s be prepared to share the Truth with them.
I’m very grateful for the class Bob Turner taught on Premillennialism in the Women’s Program at the Bear Valley Bible Institute of Denver and the thorough notes I took in my notebook!
In the front of your Bible, write “When Christ Returns”- Matt. 24:1-44.
Turn to Matt. 24:1-44.
Jesus told His disciples that the temple would be destroyed (v. 1,2). Since the temple was their place of worship, the disciples naturally wanted to know more and they asked some questions.
- Underline the two questions they asked in verse three,”When will these things be? And what will be the sign of Your coming, and of the end of the age?” In the margin, write “Two different questions.”
- In the margin next to verse four, write “Answer to question #1, vs. 4-35.”
- In verse three, underline the words “these things” and write “see vs. 2.”
- Underline “these things” in verse two and also in verses 33 & 34. By using the phrase “these things,” Jesus made it very clear He was referring to the destruction of the temple mentioned in the beginning of the chapter.
- In the margin next to verse 36, write “Answer to question #2, vs. 36-44.”
- Underline “But of that day and hour no one knows” in verse 36 and draw a squiggly line under “that day.” Now Jesus is beginning to answer their second question, the one concerning His return.
- Draw a squiggly line under “the coming of the Son of Man” in verses 37 and 39.
- Draw a squiggly line under “the Son of Man is coming” in verse 44.
Verses 40 & 41 are used by those who believe in the Rapture to enforce the idea of some being left. However, a closer look at the wording clears up any confusion. The word “taken” literally means “received.” It’s the same word Jesus used when He said, “And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself” (John 14:3). The word “left” literally means “sent away.” Notice the text doesn’t even include the word “behind.” It wouldn’t make sense to say “and the other sent away behind.” At the return of Jesus, some will be received and some will be sent away.
- Draw a square around the words “taken” and “left” in verses 40 & 41.
- In the margin, write “taken= received” and “left= sent away.”
- In the margin, also write “see parables of chap. 25.”
- At the end of verse 44, write 1 Thess. 4:13-18.
Turn to 1 Thess. 4:13-18.
Some Christians thought their dead loved ones would miss out on the Second Coming. Paul wanted them to understand the truth, that their deceased loved ones would be raised at the Second Coming just like those who would still be alive. That’s why he writes “Therefore comfort one another with these words” (v. 18).
Those who believe in the Rapture claim that Jesus will secretly snatch His saints out from among the wicked.
- In verse 16, underline the words “shout,” “voice of an archangel,” and “trumpet of God.”
- In the margin, write “Nothing secret about His coming.”
- At the end of verse 18, write John 6:40.
Turn to John 6:40.
- Underline “I will raise him up at the last day.”
- In the margin, write “the righteous.”
- At the end of the verse, write 5:28,29.
Turn to John 5:28,29.
- Circle the word “all.”
- Underline “those who have done good” and “those who have done evil.”
- In the margin, write “Good & evil included in one resurrection.”
- At the end of v. 29, write Matt. 13:47-50.
Turn to Matt. 13:47-50.
- Underline vs. 49 & 50.
- In the margin, write “exact opposite of what premillennialists teach.”
- At the end of v. 50, write 2 Thess. 1:6-10.
Turn to 2 Thess. 1:6-10.
According to this text, all will be affected by the Second Coming.
- Underline what happens to those who do not believe or obey and to those who are His saints.
- At the end of verse 10, write 1 Cor. 15:20-28.
Turn to 1 Cor. 15:20-28.
- Underline “the resurrection of the dead” in v. 21.
- Underline “Then comes the end, when He delivers the kingdom to God the Father” in v. 24.
- In the margin, write “When Christ returns, the end comes.”
- In the margin, also write “Christ will not come to begin His reign, but to end it!”
- At the end of v. 28, write Heb. 9:24-28.
Turn to Heb. 9:24-28.
- Underline all of verse 27.
- In the margin, write “Christ’s return will be for judgment.”
- At the end of v. 28, write 2 Pet. 3:10-18.
Turn to 2 Pet. 3:10-18.
- Underline all of verse 10.
- In the margin, write “True picture of Christ’s return.”
- In verse 11, draw a squiggly line under the important question, “what manner of persons ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness?”
- In verse 12, underline “the coming of the day of God.”
- In the margin, write “When Christ returns, the earth will be burned up.”
- Underline all of verse 14.
- Underline all of verse 17.
From these passages, we learn that no one knows when the Lord will return so we must live ready. Everyone who has ever lived will be judged at the Second Coming. Christ will receive His own up in the clouds and the wicked will be sent to everlasting punishment, and the earth and all that it is in will be burned up.