“The Lord doesn’t give us any dates–He just tells us to watch.”
“When He comes there will be no deception; it will be plain to us all. It will be like the lightning shining throughout the whole sky. Don’t be carried away by those who fix dates and are occupied with delusions. “It is not for you to know the times and the seasons which the Father hath put in His own power.” ¹
Let us rest there, living in an attitude of expectation—living in a spirit of consecration—doing God’s work faithfully, so that we are ready to meet Him if He should come to-day. Take heed unto yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares. For as a snare shall it come upon all them that dwell on the face of the whole earth. “Watch ye, therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of Man.” ²
That is where some of us feel that we have our hope of the rapture of the Church. Some people think we are going to be put through tribulations—going to be sifted and tested. I think the Lord will give us discipline before His appearing. But if we are watching and ready, we shall be “accounted worthy to escape all these things.” ³ See 1 Thessalonians: “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.” ¹
“Wherefore, comfort one another with these words.” ² And thank God for their inexpressible comfort: “The dead in Christ shall rise first!” ³ You have loved ones laid away in the cemetery. Their bodies are resting— waiting for the resurrection. At the voice of the archangel they shall rise and receive their new bodies. They have followed Jesus in going down into the grave, and they shall have their precedence —or shall have their glorified bodies before us who may be living. But immediately we shall be “caught up with them to meet the Lord in the air” —“and so shall we ever be with the Lord.” ¹ —D.L. Moody; 1896.