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Saturday, March 4, 2017
And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.
For further study - Matthew 24:15-31
Our devotional reading for today, the extended reading, is a continuation of the Olivet Discourse that Jesus gave on the Mount of Olives on Monday afternoon of "Passion Week", the week of the Lord's death, burial and resurrection.
Jesus was responding to the questions from His disciples about the "signs" that they could look for in the time leading up to His Second Coming. Remember, Matthew 24 is not referring to the Rapture, but the Second Coming of Jesus.
The Lord sat there on the Mount of Olives teaching His disciples, and mentioned deception, wars and rumors of wars, famines, pestilence and earthquakes in different places around the earth, Matthew 24:4-7. All of these "signs" are events that lead up to the Lord's return to the earth.
Then in verse 15 of our extended reading the Lord refers to the prophecy of Daniel the Prophet that ministered 500 years before Jesus. Daniel had spoken of the Temple in Jerusalem being desecrated with the "Abomination of Desolation" during the seven-year period in advance of the Lord's return.
The "Abomination of Desolation" will be when "Antichrist" walks into the Temple on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem and claims to be God, II Thessalonians 2:4. That's when the False Prophet erects a statue, an "image" of the Antichrist, in the Temple and makes all the world to worship this "image", Revelation 13:14-17.
The Satanic creatures, Antichrist and False Prophet, desecrate the Temple, the "Abomination of Desolation" which happens at the mid-way point of the seven year Tribulation Period, Daniel 9:27. Jesus warns the Jews that when they see those things happening to flee Jerusalem.
What this means for us today is that as we quickly approach the coming of the Lord we will see preparations for building a Temple in Jerusalem. All of the preparations have been made. The Temple can be erected in a manner of days. But before they start building the Temple the Lord must call His people, Christians, up to be with Him at the Rapture.
We are quickly approaching the time that Jesus was teaching about; however, please remember that the Rapture happens at least 3 1/2 years before the "Abomination of Desolation".
All preparations have been made to build the Temple for this prophecy to be fulfilled. The only thing that must happen before the Temple is built is the Rapture, and that could happen today. Keep looking up.
PRAYER THOUGHT: Thank you Lord for the prophetic passages that describe the day of Your coming. Help me to look eagerly for your return in light of the evidence that the Rapture could happen today.