And We Will Rise
By Hal Lindsey
Students of Bible prophecy have long warned that a time of terrible destruction looms over earth’s future. Today, similar warnings are coming from scientists of all kinds. Systems are stretched to the breaking point, including medical, economic, environmental, and moral systems. A multitude of problems in many different areas have become severe enough to threaten civilization itself.
But even in such a troubled time, every follower of Christ has full access to the Lord’s hope, peace, joy, and strength. In Jesus, we have “life more abundantly”—now and forever. Christians long for everyone to enjoy these same privileges. That’s why we share the Gospel.
At some point in the future, things will become even more precarious for the people of earth. The last seven years before Christ’s return are often referred to as “the tribulation.” That’s when things will fall apart in astonishing and destructive ways. You can read about these events in the Book of Revelation. But before those seven years, God will perform one of His most spectacular miracles. He will remove all those who are “in Christ” from the earth.
Recently, the United States, UK, Australia, Germany, and other nations began withdrawing their personnel from Ukraine. They did this believing that Russia was about to invade that country and they wanted to get their people out of harm’s way.
The rapture will happen for similar reasons. God will remove His people from planet earth before the greatest calamities begin. In fact, the scripture teaches that the coming disasters cannot take place while the Holy Spirit continues to work in, through, and for His Church on earth. We see this summarized in 2 Thessalonians 2:7. Referring to the Holy Spirit, it says, “Only He who now restrains will do so until He is taken out of the way.” [NKJV]
If you are in Christ today, you will not experience the tribulation. You will either be taken out of the world at the rapture, or you will die before that event. Either way, you will go to be with Jesus. I Thessalonians 4:15-18 describes the evacuation event in some detail. It concludes by saying, “Comfort one another with these words.”
Sadly, for many Christians, the thought of being lifted out of the world at the rapture is not comforting, but terrifying. It sounds so big—awesome in the real sense of that word—that they tremble at the thought. We must remember that the rapture happens at the instigation of a loving God. And when it happens, it is to Jesus that we will fly. He will take us out of this troubled world to a radiant wedding between Himself and His bride, the Church.
Song of Solomon 2:10-13 gives a beautiful picture of it. “My beloved spoke, and said to me: ‘Rise up, my love, my fair one, And come away. For lo, the winter is past, The rain is over and gone. The flowers appear on the earth; The time of singing has come, And the voice of the turtledove Is heard in our land. The fig tree puts forth her green figs, And the vines with the tender grapes Give a good smell. Rise up, my love, my fair one, And come away!’” [NKJV]
In ultimate love and care, one day soon Christ will say to His Church, “Rise up My love, and come away.”