In my job I deal with death all the time. I often hear people say "Everyone has to die sometime". Usually I just bite by lip and don't say anything, other times I just tell them "I don't intend to die". They either give me a surprised expression, a "you must be a lunatic" expression, or an "I know you're just kidding" expression.
Occasionally I get an "I know what you're talking about and I'm with you" expression like we're part of some secret club that shares information no one else knows. The fact is the information is available to everyone who wants to believe it.
1 Cor. 15:51-58 NLT 51 But let me tell you a wonderful secret God has revealed to us. Not all of us will die, but we will all be transformed. 52 It will happen in a moment, in the blinking of an eye, when the last trumpet is blown. For when the trumpet sounds, the Christians who have died will be raised with transformed bodies. And then we who are living will be transformed so that we will never die. 53 For our perishable earthly bodies must be transformed into heavenly bodies that will never die. 54 When this happens -when our perishable earthly bodies have been transformed into heavenly bodies that will never die -then at last the Scriptures will come true: "Death is swallowed up in victory. 55 O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?" 56 For sin is the sting that results in death, and the law gives sin its power. 57 How we thank God, who gives us victory over sin and death through Jesus Christ our Lord! 58 So, my dear brothers and sisters, be strong and steady, always enthusiastic about the Lord's work, for you know that nothing you do for the Lord is ever useless.
We call this the "Rapture" of the church, the "catching away". If you think the hurricanes hitting the Gulf are horrendous, they are nothing compared to the horrors that will happen after the church is taken off this planet. The period after the Rapture is called the tribulation period. The book of Revelation tells much of what will happen during that time. Believe me!!!, you want to go in the Rapture, you don't want to be here. The tribulation period will last seven years, with the last three and one half years being the most horrific. While this is happening on earth, the resurrected and raptured saints in Heaven will be having a great celebration and feast.
Some call the Rapture "escapest theology". You betcha!!! God is known for keeping his children from disasterous situations. He had Noah build an ark to avoid the flood of his day, he had an angel guide Lot and his family away from Sodom before He destroyed it, he has warned many Christians in this day and age not to get on planes that eventually crashed, or to be in restaurants where shootings occurred, etc., they listened and obeyed and lived to tell about it.
I have heard all my life that "He's coming soon"! I've always believed it would be in my lifetime. Many, many Christians have a deep "inner knowing" that we are living in the last of the last days as we know them now. There will never be an "end of the world". God has plans for this place, which I will discuss in other blog posts yet to come.
One day, most likely in your lifetime, there will be headlines that read something like "MILLIONS MISSING ALL OVER THE WORLD". Hopefully you will not be here reading those newspapers. I pray you will be one of those "missing". Don't worry though, you'll be celebrating and feasting if you are.