Monday, April 04, 2016

Come My People

(Excerpt from a recent lesson I presented to our adult Sunday school classes at my church.)

The Protection of the People of God from the full fury that is coming - Isaiah 26:20-21

Isaiah 26:20: “Come, my people, enter your chambers, and shut your doors behind you; hide yourselves for a little while until the fury has passed by.” (ESV)

To the Israelite living in Isaiah's time these words would evoke Passover imagery: The angel of death passing over the houses marked by the blood of the Passover lamb. Those first born who were in the houses with the Passover lamb's blood on the doorposts would be spared. Those who were outside of the marked houses would die.

This imagery reflected in Revelation 18:4-5 – Judgment on “Babylon”:

“Come out of her, my people,lest you take part in her sins,lest you share in her plagues;for her sins are heaped high as heaven,and God has remembered her iniquities."

What is this “fury”?

Isaiah 26:21: “For behold, the Lord is coming out from his place to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity, and the earth will disclose the blood shed on it, and will no more cover its slain.”

The main point of this is not about wondering or arguing if Christians will be preserved "from" the great tribulation or if they will be preserved "through" the great tribulation. It is not about if we hold a pre-, mid-, or post-tribulation view of the end times. It is about what the Apostle Paul says in Romans 8:1:

“There is therefore now NO condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus.” (Romans 8:1)

True Christian believers, those who are "in Christ Jesus", are NOT nor ever will be under the WRATH of God period! They may suffer tribulation and distress and even death itself. They may experience the loving discipline their heavenly Father exercises toward His wayward children. They may face persecution even unto death for the sake of the name of Christ. But be very sure of this, they will NEVER be recipients of the wrath of God; that wrath they deserved was put on Jesus’ head at the cross, and those who are in Him are forgiven and declared righteous for His sake.

(The complete outline and notes for this lesson are available here.)

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