Man from Space, Pt. 2

Man from Space, Pt. 2

Are increasing natural disasters harbingers of the end?
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Joe Crews: Do you think my friends that the earth has ever known an earthquake of this magnitude or dementia before? Never. We thought it was a big one in Mexico City. We think we've read about other tremendous shakings of this earth, like the Great Lisbon earthquake back there maybe. I'm telling you that we've seen nothing until this one strikes at the very end of time and it'll bring down every tall building in every city of the world. It'll leave this earth in ruins-

Speaker 1: Seismologists assure us that a giant quake will soon strike the California area. In today's concluding crusade message on man from space, Joe Cruz pictures the final earthquake to strike this planet.

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Joe: Now let's find out about the horrible part of his coming. Obviously, it's going to be visible. It's going to be seen by a lot of people. Let's come back now to 1st Thessalonians 4 and notice how loud it's going to be. If you please, 1st Thessalonians 4:16 and 17, "For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout and with the voice of the Archangel and with 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." Now, friends notice that there'll be a lot of sounds connected with it as well as a lot of glory and bright view.

See the spectacular sight of it cannot be hidden from anybody and then the sound that will come to the ears of every human being in all the earth. The trumpet will blow, the shout will take place. By the way that shout is going to actually open the graves. People will come up out of their graves had been sleeping there for centuries of time. That's the kind of sound the friend that will be attending the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. Then it says, "We that are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them. The power of that voice is going to bring the life to the dead and a brand new immortal life to those who are living upon this earth."

Have you ever heard anybody say that this is a silent event? Have you ever heard anybody talk about a secret rapture that will not even be recognized or known at the moment it occurs? I've heard a lot about that. My friends, let me tell you one thing, it's going to be heard by every ear. I don't play a trumpet, never have, but my two little boys tried to learn when they were small. There's just one thing I know about a trumpet, it's not silent. I found that out. A trumpet was made to be sounded. Isn't that right? It was made to be sounding and so this trumpet is going to sound and that sound will be united with the voice of God and the Archangel and the graves are going to open up. What a thrilling thing that will be.

Friends, there will be some other physical manifestations at that same time that will also be very well known, very obvious to everybody. This old world has gone to a real and raw and shake and tremble and that it happens. In fact, it's going to be an earthquake such as men have never known. The book of Revelation describes it for us. In fact, the 16th chapter of Revelation tells us about this convulsion of the earth which will occur at this time. In verse 18 of Revelation 16, "And there were voices and thunders and lightnings and there was a great earthquake such as was not since men were upon the earth, so mighty and earthquake and so great." Verse 20 says, "And every island fled away and the mountains were not found."

Do you think my friends that the earth has ever known an earthquake of this magnitude or dimension before? Never. We thought it was a big one in Mexico City. We think we've read about other tremendous shakings of this earth, like the Great Lisbon earthquake back there maybe. I'm telling you that we've seen nothing until this one strikes at the very end of time and it will bring down every tall building in every city of the world. It'll leave this earth in ruin and ravel according to the way the Bible describes it and the wicked people, my friends are going to see these things and to them, it is not going to be any kind of a joyful moment at all.

You and I are going to look up with great anticipation and joy when these things happen, but the wicked are going to be so profoundly affected by it. They'll be distressed, they'll be fearful. They'll try to hide from it in fact. Come to Revelation chapter 6 and notice how the wicked will try to escape from these tremendous physical signs of the coming of Jesus. In verse 14, it says, "And the heaven departed as a scroll when it is rolled together and every mountain and island were moved out of their places and the kings of the earth and the great men and the rich man and the chief captains and the mighty men and every been man, and every free man hid themselves on the dens, on the rocks of the mountains and said to the mountains and rocks fall on us and hide us from the face of him that sitteth on the throne and from the wrath of the lamb, for the great day of his wrath is come and who shall be able to stand."

You see that friends, the wicked would try to hide in the caves of the earth. They all get in the crevices of the rock to try to escape, but they can't do it. They are ashamed to meet Jesus, they are unprepared to meet him. There is sin in their life and they're terrified at the thought and the prospect, and so they try to escape from it, but no one will be able to escape from it friends. It will come upon every person in the world. Let's come back to this thought for a moment about a secret rapture. I received a newspaper in the mail not too long ago, and it was supposed to be a mock-up of a newspaper that would come out the day after the rapture took place.

It had terrifying stories in this paper with horrible pictures also of racks that had taken place, planes had crashed killing hundreds of people. Automobiles had run off the road buses and it killed all the people on board. It was this paper, by the way, we're supposed to have been printed and tribulations city a 666 a highway or something like that. But anyway, these stories were all telling about people who apparently vanished into thin air. They simply disappeared. Drivers were taken out of automobiles and pilots away from the planes, and all of these collisions and crashes were taking place.

This was supposed to represent a secret coming of Jesus. These things would all happen nobody would know how the children disappear into thin air on the way to school. Nobody knew what happened to the children and so forth. Now, friends, is this really what the Bible teaches about the manner of Christ coming? No, that's not it at all. That is not the way Jesus described it, is it? Jesus said that all the tribes were going to see it. He said all the nations would behold it. This could not be right at all. Not right at all. How did people get these distorted ideas about some sort of secret coming here that would not even disturb a blade of grass?

People, according to one report I read that the righteous will be taken out of the graves, not a blade of grass disturbed and all the good people would be taken away only the wicked people left here and nobody would understand or know what had happened to all of these disappearing people. That is not what the Bible says friends. I believe that this misconception has come because of two texts only. Two texts that have been distorted and misunderstood. Let's look at these two verses because these are the only two verses I know that are really been presented in any serious evidence, a serious evidence of a secret coming of Jesus.

First of all, he'll come as a thief in the night. Our Lord mentioned this. He's coming as a thief. You've read that text haven't you? I don't know how that verse or that line struck you and how you understand it, but millions of people read that and they say, "Well, now if he's coming as a thief, this means that he's got to come secretly and no one will know that he's gone until he's already gone and we only see the result of it." This is not what Jesus said. Come with me again to Matthew 24 and let's allow the Lord to explain his own language, his own phraseology.

All right, Matthew 24:42, beginning at verse 42, Jesus said, "Watch therefore for ye know not what hour your Lord death come, but know this, that if the good man of the house had known and watched the thief would come, he would have watched and would not have suffered his house to be broken up. Therefore, be ye also ready for in such an hour as you think not the son of man coming." Jesus said it would be like a thief of course he did. But he did not mean that he would come sneaking around like some common criminal to try to catch us by surprise.

He said I will come as a thief because I will come in an hour that you think not., He said, If you knew thief was coming, you would wait and watch and be ready for it. My coming will be like a thief and you won't expect it. In other words, friends it will be unexpected. That's all Jesus was saying. It'll be unexpected. It will not be done without any knowledge of it happening. Not at all. Christ explained it himself. In fact, not only did Jesus say that, but Peter made a statement also about Christ coming as a thief in the night.

Turn with me to Second Peter and let's take a look at that verse and see if it throws any more light on this particular phrase of the Bible. 2nd Peter 3 and let's look at verse 10. 2nd Peter 3:10 verse 10, "But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night." Here it is again now. Just what Jesus said. It's going to be like a thief. Peter said the same thing but look at the very next line.

He says here in the which, the heavens shall pass away where the great noise and the elements shall melt with fervent heat. Now, tell me friends, is that going to be secret, this great noise it's going to happen when Jesus comes as a thief, you're telling me that noise is not going to be heard by anybody? When the elements melt with fervent heat, you telling me that I won't be known and recognized by people who are living here on this earth? Of course, they will and yet it's going to be done like a thief. What does that term mean? It simply means that it will be unexpected when it happens. That's what it means.

Now, let's come to that second phrase that has been misunderstood and misinterpreted, and that's found in Luke 17, where it says, "One will be taken and the other left." Have you read that in the Bible? One will be taken and the other left. I've heard this used over and over again to support a secret rapture or a secret coming of Jesus. By the way, the word rapture is not even found in the Bible at all. I think you realize that friends. This is a word that has been invented by man, by theologians to describe the event that we refer to as the second coming of Jesus.

Now let's find out from these verses whether it's going to be done in this secretive manner or not. Let's read the verses under consideration in verse 34 and then verse 35, and 36. "I tell you, and that night, there should be two men in one bed, that one should be taken, the other shall be left. Two women shall be grinding together, the one should be taken the other left. Two men shall be in the field, the one should be taken the other left. Now these are the verses that are read and believed by many people as an indication of our Lord's secret return.

Now, friends, is that really what it means? What is he saying in these verses? Go back up a few verses ahead and let's try to get the context now. The full meaning of it, begin with me in verse 26. As it was on 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 no I entered into the ark and the flood came and destroyed them all. Friends let me ask you something, Jesus said my coming is going to be just like it was in the days of Noah.

Here's my question in the days of Noah were some taken and some left, were they? Some were taken into an ark and say, Isn't that true? Some were taken into an ark and say, the others were left outside. Now tell me what happened to the ones who were left? The Bible says that the flood came and destroyed them all. Doesn't it? Keep that in mind. Now, let's read the next verse. Verse 28, likewise, also is it was the days of Lot, they did eat, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they build, but the same day that Lot went out of Sodom at rain fire and brimstone from heaven and destroyed them all.

Even thou shall it be in the day when the Son of Man is revealed. Now tell me were some taken and some left in the city of Sodom. The ones who were taken were taken out to safety and the ones who are left what happened to them? They were destroyed and that destruction that came were they not? Now we come to the next part of this sermon of Jesus in verse 34, where he says, "I tell you, and that night there should be two men in one bed. The one should be taken, the other left, two women grinding together, one taken the other left, two men in the field, one shall be taken and the other left."

Notice the next verse and they answered and said, "Where Lord," the disciple said, "Where are they going to be left, Lord? How are they going to be left? What do you mean one will be taken and one left?" Jesus just said unto them were so whoever the body is, or the carcass where the eagles be gathered together, and they're going to be left or right friend, but how are they going to be left dead, Jesus said, they'll be left dead, and the eagles will comment feed on their bodies. While he was following through the same line of thought that he'd been giving in the entire chapter.

He said in Noah's day, some were taken somewhere left, the ones that were left were destroyed. In Sodom's day, some were taken some were left, the ones that were left were destroyed. When Jesus comes, he said, some will be taken, some will be left. The ones that are left are left dead. He said the Eagles will come and destroy and eat their bodies. How could anybody believe that this is talking about a secret record has absolutely nothing to do with it.

It's talking about that separation will take place between the good and the evil when our Lord returns and takes the righteous with him and the wicked will be slain here by the brightness and the glory of is coming just as we read in Revelation that they tried to hide in the caves of the earth. You see, sin cannot live in the presence of God. These wicked people are full of sin were trying to escape from His divine view so that they might not be consumed by His glorious presence. But this destroys them at His coming and their dead bodies are here described by Jesus.

Have you heard anybody talk about how the Antichrist a man of sin is not going to come until after the rapture takes place? Have you ever heard that idea? You see, a lot of people believe that the rapture or the secret snatching away of the good people will take place before the Antichrist, or the man of sin comes into the world and that they won't be here to suffer any of those things will come under the beast and the mark of the beast. Come with me quickly to one more text so that we might clarify this point clearly. This is in second Thessalonians chapter one and I'm beginning to read with verse seven.

"To you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels." Now here's a description of our Lord returning to this earth, and it's a few people who are troubled, you're going to have rest along with me, when Jesus comes, when he shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, in flaming fire taking vengeance on them that no 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.

I notice something interesting here it says when He comes to be glorified in the saints that is to take them and give them a mortality and catch them up with him in the air to medium, when He does that it says the wicked are going to be cut down by his bright glory. Now this indicates that He's going to deal with both the good and the evil at the same time and the same coming. You see this secret rapture idea is that Jesus comes to take the righteous and then seven years later He comes back to deal with the wicked and during that seven-year period the Antichrist are supposed to come, the mark of the beast is supposed to appear, and so forth, and the work of the Man of Sin is to be carried on.

When our friends this tells us that when Jesus comes to be glorified in a saints, and to take them with him, the wicked are destroyed at that same time, there is no seven-year period in between, you'll never find that in the Bible. No where, no where. In fact, come down now to the second chapter of second Thessalonians and look at verse one with me. Now, this is very interesting. Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together on to him. Now this is the Raptor. isn't it? To be gathered together to him, is not the rector, to be caught up to meet him, that's it.

He says, "I beseech you by the coming of the Lord, and by our gathering together unto him, that ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as at the day of crisis at hand, let no man deceive you by any means for that day shall not come, except that come up, falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of prediction." My friends, here it plainly says that that day of His coming, that day of his gathering, His people will not take place until after the Antichrist comes. Even a child could read that and know exactly what he's saying. You can mark it down tonight without any fear friends that the man of son will come and do his work before the rapture, before Jesus comes, and then he will be destroyed by the coming of Jesus and because verse eight says, "And then shall that wicked one that is the Antichrist be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth and shall destroy with the brightness of His coming." They both take place at the same time.

Well, let's hurry on now to the grand climax of what I want to say tonight and that is friends, why is Jesus coming. Here is where we touch on the sweetest part of the message. He's coming to receive his people and to save us out of this old world of darkness and sin.

Look at Revelation 22:12, "And, behold, I come quick and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be." For all of these long 6,000 years, the old devil has had his way pretty well in this world. We see the marks of his oppression, friends upon the world memorials of the dead and the cemeteries of the land. One of these days, the heavens are going to break open and our Lord will return, and He'll bring all the angels with him, and He'll save his people from this earth. You talk about a reunion day. Won't that be great friends?

We just read there in 1 Thessalonians 4:16, "For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with 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." Then in 1 Corinthians 15:51 it says, "Behold, I show you a mystery. We shall not all sleep, but we shall be changed. In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised, and we shall be changed. And this mortal shall put on immortality."

What a reunion in the sky. You see the feet of Jesus will not touch the earth when he comes the second time. We'll go up to meet him in the clouds and all of these resurrected loved ones will be there also. You talk about rupture my friend. You talk about ecstasy and joy. That's what it's going be, isn't it? The loved ones brought together again who been long separated by the enemy of death. Mothers and fathers, brothers and sisters, looking into the shining and mortal faces of their loved ones never to be separated again. What a prospect that is friends.

I have a little boy eight years old who went to sleep in Jesus. I long to take that little boy in my arms again. I'll do it on that day. You'll have your loved ones again too. Someone spoke to me tonight about losing a little eight year old son also. What a day, my friends to have these loved ones with us, never be separated from them again. To be there in His presence, to live with Him throughout eternity. Should this not be the greatest news that any Christian has to share with other people, friends? Don't you think we ought to be singing about it, talking about it, and praying about it? Yet, some Christians are afraid of this doctrine. They're afraid of it.

In fact, I was holding one crusade, and I preached on this topic and when I went out of the auditorium that night, this dear lady was walking up and down the sidewalk smoking one cigarette after another nervous. She rushed up in front of me and shook her finger in my face, and she said, "You scared me to death tonight. I'll never come to these meetings again. You actually prayed for Jesus to come." She was frightened to death. Well, I'm happy to tell you that she did keep coming and she gave her heart to Christ. She became a joyful Christian who looked forward to the coming of Christ. Why should anyone be afraid of it, friends? Why should we be terrified by it? Don't you want to see the one you love? If you love Jesus, don't you want to see Jesus?

Can you imagine a young couple getting married, and I've got a lot of weddings. There stand that beautiful bride and the groom, and they promise their lives away and they're so happy and so thrilled. Let's say that right after this wedding, the young husband is sent off to Europe by his company and he leaves his poor, lonely wife behind. He writes to her every day, and she is so excited by those letters. He tells her how much he loves her. He sends gifts and souvenirs to her. She is showing them to her friends all the time saying, "Look what my husband sent me this time. I got such a wonderful husband. I love him so much. I hope he never comes back."

[laughter]

You can't imagine her saying that, could you? If she really loves him, she's going to be talking about him coming back, isn't that right? How happy she'll be when he comes back. Do don't know why people are afraid of the coming of Jesus? I'll tell you, I'll tell you why, friends because they're not ready. They're afraid because they're not prepared.

My mother was a great cook, a wonderful cook. Of course, everybody's mother was a great cook. I'm convinced of that. Mother could make the best chocolate cake that you've ever tasted. She really could. She would let me lick the pan. You good folks you probably understand what that means. She would let me scrape all the icing out of the pan that she didn't get put on the cake. I could usually get a good spoonful of I scraped real hard on the pan. Sometime she put most of it on the cake though. There it would be on the cake oozing down and collecting on the plate at the bottom.

I would come along and try to take care of all that excess icing on my finger. Mother would say, "No, no, Joe, you must not touch it after it gets on the cake. You can lick the pan but don't eat it off the cake." Now, I understood that very well. One day, mother went away after she had made this very big chocolate cake, and it was right in the middle of the table. She was gone for an hour or more. I watched this icing oozing down. It kept drooping down and collecting, it was just ready to spill over on the table. I couldn't take it any longer. I took my finger, and I took up a great big finger full of icing. Right at that moment, I heard footsteps on the porch. Now, I can tell you my friends at that moment, I did not want to see my mother come.

[laughter]

I believe this is the reason people don't want to see Jesus come. They've got their hands full of the stolen sweets of this world and they're afraid. They don't want him to come. Now, don't misunderstand me. It does mean a lot of changes when He comes, isn't that right? There'll be a lot of changes of familiar places and faces and all the rest of it, yes. Don't you believe for one moment my friends that it's not going to be better. It's going to be better. To look into the face of Jesus who loved you and who died for you.

One minute in the presence of Jesus is going to compensate for all the suffering and the self-denial that we've ever had to go through in this world, isn't that right? One minute in the presence of Jesus. I long for it. I believe you do tonight. Some of you as you sit in your places right now are thinking about a lonely grave somewhere on a hillside. You long for that reunion with that loved one again. My friends that is about to happen. Our Lord is about to break through the heavens with all of his angels. We must be ready.

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