Greg our teacher, whom I have before mentioned to you, stated something to the effect, that when expectations are not met we can experience adverse effects. Among these of course could be disappointment and doubt. So this morning as I was rereading a post on WordPress, and I was reminded of what was said.
I will preface what I am going to point out, because I actually do agree with the author of the post, Don Twobears, on much of what he says in his article, from which the following quote is taken. But I must speak to the quote itself. Otherwise I have listed where his article can be found. You should read the rest of what he says, because it is good advise. So let’s look at what I disagree with.
“My Friends, if you do not follow Jesus Christ in your Life, you’re in that passage of Scripture above (2 Tim. 3:1-7). And knowing this, where do you think you will be when the Rapture of the Church of Jesus Christ takes place? “LEFT BEHIND,” that is where, right here on earth instead of Heaven! Or have you missed the Passage of Scripture that tells you this?
Matthew 7:13-14 NKJV “Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and FEW there be that find it.“
See… there’s that small word…FEW…and it should scare the you-know-what out of you too! Do you understand this? Out of the entire number of people that have ever lived on this Earth, including those that are alive today and any that are to come…Only a FEW will make it to Heaven to be with the Lord…
My Friends, what a Gift! If this life is so very short…remember…Eternity is FOREVER and EVER. Now you must make a decision, because the Time is so very short before the Rapture. It could happen as you read this article; it could happen tonight or in the Morning tomorrow… Where are you headed?…”
The above quote is taken from raptureready.com How Much Worse Can It Get? :: By Don Twobears
There is even part of this statement with which I agree. The word which Jesus speaks does emphasize that only “few” will be in the eternal heavenly kingdom. That is a sad fact when we think of it. The few sounds like a large number when you hear of the multitude which no man can number in the Revelation, but when compared with the billions who have lived this multitude is few.
What is my beef with this statement? — To make the Rapture is not the point of Jesus words in this passage. This method of evangelism has been with the church to some degree or another since the 1830’s. It has created expectations, which have led to the adverse effects such that Greg alluded to, although he in his eschatology would agree with Don on a pre-Trib version of the Rapture.
Don says that Matt. 7:13-14 is the Scriptural proof that one will be left behind in the rapture if not following Jesus. The rapture is certainly not even mentioned as the emphasis of this passage, the emphasis is the way to life eternal, vs. the way to destruction. Finding the way is what is important not because the Rapture could occur at any moment, but because destruction awaits those who do not find the way before their life does end in death.
The early believers who followed Jesus were known as the people of this or “the” way, all others were on the wide road to destruction. Destruction will occur in the lake of fire as men remaining on the broad way will endure whatever judgment he or she might be deemed worthy to endure there. The end of the broad way is certain destruction. The meaning of that destruction is debated by theologians.
If you are reading this you need to realize that you are given in this verse an opportunity to choose this narrow gate. We are born to the broad path. You are responsible to remain where you are or to enter what is deemed even by the world to be a very narrow gate and way, because it is limited to only one way (Following Jesus the Son of the living God). The decision is Jesus and the freedom that God offers by His grace (the narrow way) vs. any other way, which run counter to Him, which would include the gambit from “no god” to each and every false god, and everything in between.
Do not be deceived — there is only one way, and every man who enters eternity with God must enter through Him, who is that way, and walk that way no matter if Jew or Gentile.
All Old Testament saints are in that way having heard the preaching of Jesus, their Messiah, while He was in paradise. All Jews today and those of the Tribulation period must come in that way, and this is why the first resurrection includes all of those who are in Christ, and why the Rapture of those, who are alive and remain in Christ is taught to follow this first resurrection of all who are now and will be the dead in Christ. Many both Jew and Gentile will die in Christ during a coming time of Tribulation. The false hope given by any rapture teaching prior to the first resurrection will yield for the one expecting it an anticipation not met yielding adverse doubts. The gate is narrow (small) and the way is straight leading to eternal life.
There is one body and one Spirit, just as also you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all who is over all and through all and in all. But to each one of us grace was given according to the measure of Christ’s gift. Therefore it says, “ When He ascended on high, He led captive a host of captives , And He gave gifts to men .”
Ephesians 4:4-8 NASB
Jesus is the only way until He comes, then all who are in Christ will be with Him. These are the ones guaranteed an eternity with God in heaven. Some of that eternity will be spent right hear on this earth.