We Which Are Alive and Remain 1
1 Thessalonians 4:13-17 But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.
Four classes of people are clearly shown to be living on the earth immediately prior to the second coming of the Lord Jesus Christ.
The question that must be asked is who is alive and remains at the coming of the Lord? The qualifications are alive and remain.
The four classes are:
1. The Outer Court Class
2. The Unsaved
3. The Manchild
4. The Bride of Christ
The Outer Court Class
Revelation 11:1,2 And there was given me a reed like a rod: and the angel stood, saying, Rise, and measure the temple of God, and the altar, and them that worship therein. But the court which is without the temple leave out, and measure it not; for it is given unto the Gentiles: and the holy city shall they tread under foot forty and two months.
A synonym for the outer court class is the unwise virgin class.
The Unwise Virgin Class
Matthew 25:1-13 Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened to ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom. And five of them were wise, and five were foolish. They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them: But the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps. While the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept. And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him. Then all those virgins arose, and trimmed their lamps. And the foolish said unto the wise, Give us of your oil; for our lamps are gone out. But the wise answered, saying, Not so; lest there be not enough for us and you: but go ye rather to them that sell, and buy for yourselves. And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came; and they that were ready went in with him to the marriage: and the door was shut. Afterward came also the other virgins, saying, Lord, Lord, open to us. But he answered and said, Verily I say unto you, I know you not. Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh.
Another synonym for the outer court class is the remnant of the woman's seed.
Remnant of the Woman's Seed
Revelation 12:17 And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.
Sinners; those not born again; those who have not received Jesus Christ as Saviour and Lord; those who are not Christians.
Matthew 24:37-39 But as the days of Noah were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, And knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.
Luke 17:26-30 And as it was in the days of Noah, so shall it be also in the days of the Son of man. They did eat, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and the flood came, and destroyed them all. Likewise as it was in the days of Lot; they did eat, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they builded; But the same day that lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven, and destroyed them all.
Luke 17:34-36 I tell you, in that night there shall be two men in one bed; the one shall be taken, and the other shall be left. Two women shall be grinding together; the one shall be taken, and the other left. Two men shall be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left.
2 Thessalonians 1:7-10 And to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power; When he shall come to be glorified in his saints, and to be admired in all them that believe (because our testimony among you was believed) in that day.
Revelation 19:11-21 And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat on him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war. His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself. And he was clothed in a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called the Word of God. And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean. And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS. And I saw an angel standing in the sun; and he cried with a loud voice, saying to all the fowls that fly in the midst of heaven, Come and gather yourselves together unto the supper of the great God; That ye may eat the flesh of kings, and the flesh of captains, and the flesh of mighty men, and the flesh of horses, and of them that sit on them, and the flesh of all men, both free and bond, both small and great. And I saw the beast, and the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against him that sat on the horse, and against his army. And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshiped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone. And the remnant were slain with the sword of him that sat upon the horse, which sword proceeded out of his mouth: and all the fowls were filled with their flesh.
Luke 19:27 But those mine enemies, which would not that I should reign over them, bring hither, and slay them before me.
The Fate of These Two Classes
1. The Unwise Virgin Class
These people are alive immediately prior to the second coming of Christ, but do they remain?
Daniel 7:25 And he shall speak great words against the Most High, and shall wear out the saints of the Most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time.
Revelation 13:7 And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues and nations.
This class of people is shown to be cast into outer darkness. In its primary application, this speaks of the coming great tribulation period of three and a half years. In its ultimate application, it speaks of hell.
Matthew 8:12 But the children of the kingdom shall be cast into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
Matthew 13:42 And shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth.
Matthew 22:13 Then the king said to the servants, Bind him hand and foot, and take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
These people are alive, but they do not remain: every one of them is:
[a] left out,
[b] trodden under foot,
[c] shut out,
[d] overcome in war,
[e] given into the hand of the world ruler,
[f] war is made against them; they are overcome,
[g] they are cast into outer darkness.
This class is annihilated by the sword of the Antichrist.
It does not qualify.
(b) The Unsaved
This class is destroyed by the brightness of Jesus’ coming.
They are alive at the second coming, but again, they do not remain.
Jesus offers a teaching for both these classes:
Luke 12:42-48 And the Lord said, Who then is that faithful and wise steward, whom his lord shall make ruler over his household, to give them their portion of meat in due season? Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing. Of a truth I say unto you, that he will make him ruler over all that he hath. But and if that servant say in his heart, My lord delayeth his coming; and shall begin to beat the menservants and maidens, and to eat and drink, and to be drunken; The lord of that servant will come in a day when he looketh not for him, and at an hour when he is not aware, and will cut him in sunder, and will appoint him his portion with the unbelievers. And that servant, which knew his lord’s will, and prepared not himself, neither did according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes. But he that knew not, and did commit things worthy of stripes, shall be beaten with few stripes. For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required: and to whom men have committed much, of him will they ask the more.
Ignorance of the will of the Lord is no excuse. God has given the world the Bible, the Holy Spirit, the five fold ministry and a variety of churches.
God places the responsibility of learning fairly and squarely on the shoulders of the individual, the student, not the teacher! He has provided all that is necessary. Because this is so He will not embrace ignorance.
Two sub-classes are shown:
1. The person who knows not the will of the Lord. (He is beaten with few stripes).
2. The person who knew his Lord’s will, but failed to prepare himself. (He is beaten with many stripes).
Either way, punishment, stripes are the result.
Prepare yourself. By knowing the will of the Lord. By doing the will of the Lord.
The more that is given to you, the more will be required of you.
T he Tabernacle of Moses
The Tabernacle of Moses is the divine pattern.
The three great dwelling places of God on the earth are, the Tabernacle of Moses, the Temple of Solomon and the Christian Church.
The Tabernacle of Moses is divided into three sections: the Outer Court, the Holy Place and the Most Holy Place. So is the Temple of Solomon. So is the Christian Church.
This pattern is also seen in heaven, the Garden of Eden, and the Book of Revelation. In each and every instance, the pattern is consistent: it is never deviated from.
The one word that must be kept constantly in mind when reading the word of God is Harmony. God is in harmony with Himself, with His creation, with His Word and with His people. Great care must be taken not to distort the Word of God: it must be rightly divided.
Consistency and harmony must forever be kept in view, particularly in the teaching of End Time Events.
Now let us consider the qualifications of the two remaining groups, the manchild and the Bride of Christ.
T he Standard of Measurement
Revelation 11:1 And there was given me a reed like a rod: and the angel stood, saying, Rise and measure the temple of God, and the altar, and them that worship therein.
The required measurement is none other than the fullness of the Christ standard!
Ephesians 4:13 Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ:
The measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ! This is a very high standard: there is none higher. It is the standard (unit of measurement) to which the Christian must attain if he is not to be left out, or trodden under foot.
The only method by which this is attainable is through exposure to the five-fold ministry.
God has seen to it that every human soul requires the ministry of all five. It is far too large to be satisfied by the one man ministry.
Only in this manner can the church attain the required level, attain the divine standard, develop to the stature of a perfect man. Then, and then only, will she attain the level of co-equality with Christ. Only then will she be acceptable for marriage (union) with the Lord Jesus Christ.