Donald Trump Is a Scam. Evangelical Voters Should Back Away (CP Editorial)


Editors’ Note: The Christian Post has not taken a position on a political candidate before today. We are making an exception because Trump is exceptionally bad and claims to speak for and represent the interests of evangelicals.

We the senior editors of The Christian Post encourage our readers to back away from Donald Trump.

As the most popular evangelical news website in the United States and the world, we feel compelled by our moral responsibility to our readers to make clear that Donald Trump does not represent the interests of evangelicals and would be a dangerous leader for our country.

Trump claims to be a Christian, yet says he has never asked for forgiveness.

While God, in His wondrous creativity, has drawn people to Himself through the saving grace of Jesus Christ in many different ways, there are certain non-negotiable actions needed to become a Christian: One must repent of their sins and follow Christ as Lord and Savior. Trump doesn’t talk this way, even when urged to.

Further, his words and actions do not demonstrate the “fruit of the spirit.”

Trump is a misogynist and philanderer. He demeans women and minorities. His preferred forms of communication are insults, obscenities and untruths. While Christians have been guilty of all of these, we, unlike Trump, acknowledge our sins, ask for forgiveness and seek restitution with the aid of the Holy Spirit and our community of believers.

On Sunday, Trump’s apparent reluctance to disavow David Duke until late in the day was extremely distasteful. The Ku Klux Klan is an evil, unholy movement representing the worst of America. Anyone who will not immediately denounce their support is unfit to be president.

Trump claims he will “protect Christians.” We already have a Protector, and He is not Trump.

The grievances of Trump’s supporters are legitimate. Politicians for too long have promised to represent the best interests of all Americans before an election, only to represent the interest of their cronies after the election. But Trump’s followers are being fooled into believing that he can help them.

Trump is promising many things that he cannot possibly deliver, but the most frightening part is Trump’s stated willingness to ignore the authority of the Supreme Court, Congress and the U.S. Constitution if he were to become president.

Trump has been surrounded by controversy for decades because of his untruthfulness, questionable business practices, reported association with organized crime, and abrupt changes in fundamental positions. Many of these controversies involve defrauding the working class and decisions that compromised American workers. He has taken a political position both pro and con on virtually every subject and major political party. This should give evangelicals great pause and concern about supporting such a mercurial and chameleon-like candidate. Past performance is the best predictor of future behavior.

Trump said he wants to make it easier to sue newspapers that criticize him. When it was pointed out to him Sunday that he would have to amend the Constitution’s freedom of speech and freedom of press clauses, Trump was unmoved, simply noting that England has weaker protections for the press.

Many evangelicals, including our friends, have criticized Trump on our own opinion page and elsewhere, such as Matt Barber, Dr. Michael Brown, Kristi Burton Brown, Susan Stamper Brown, Rev. Mark Creech, Wallace Henley, E.W. Jackson, Max Lucado, Dr. Russell Moore and Rep. Reid Ribble. If Trump were to become president we fear he would use the levers of government power to silence them and others.

We are already concerned about the expansion of executive power to dangerous and unconstitutional extremes in the current and previous administrations. Plus, in just the past year we have seen Christians put out of business and jailed for living according to the dictates of their faith.

Trump, an admirer of Vladimir Putin and other dictatorial leaders, may claim to be your friend and protector now, but as his history indicates, without your full support he will turn on you, and use whatever power is within his means to punish you.

This is a critical time in American history and we call on all Christians to pray for personal repentance, divine forgiveness and spiritual awakening for our nation. It is not the time for Donald Trump.
Read more at http://www.christianpost.com/news/donald-trump-scam-evangelical-voters-back-away-cp-editorial-158813/#r6ezrgYpYkLLuL7C.99

Read more at http://www.christianpost.com/news/donald-trump-scam-evangelical-voters-back-away-cp-editorial-158813/#cyBgffzJQhIJuibY.99

Donald Trump Is a Scam. Evangelical Voters Should Back Away (CP Editorial)


(PHOTO: REUTERS/RANDALL HILL)

U.S. Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks at a rally at the Sumter Civic Center in Sumter, South Carolina, February 17, 2016.

Editors’ Note: The Christian Post has not taken a position on a political candidate before today. We are making an exception because Trump is exceptionally bad and claims to speak for and represent the interests of evangelicals.

We the senior editors of The Christian Post encourage our readers to back away from Donald Trump.

As the most popular evangelical news website in the United States and the world, we feel compelled by our moral responsibility to our readers to make clear that Donald Trump does not represent the interests of evangelicals and would be a dangerous leader for our country.

Trump claims to be a Christian, yet says he has never asked for forgiveness.

While God, in His wondrous creativity, has drawn people to Himself through the saving grace of Jesus Christ in many different ways, there are certain non-negotiable actions needed to become a Christian: One must repent of their sins and follow Christ as Lord and Savior. Trump doesn’t talk this way, even when urged to.

Further, his words and actions do not demonstrate the “fruit of the spirit.”

Trump is a misogynist and philanderer. He demeans women and minorities. His preferred forms of communication are insults, obscenities and untruths. While Christians have been guilty of all of these, we, unlike Trump, acknowledge our sins, ask for forgiveness and seek restitution with the aid of the Holy Spirit and our community of believers.

On Sunday, Trump’s apparent reluctance to disavow David Duke until late in the day was extremely distasteful. The Ku Klux Klan is an evil, unholy movement representing the worst of America. Anyone who will not immediately denounce their support is unfit to be president.

Trump claims he will “protect Christians.” We already have a Protector, and He is not Trump.

The grievances of Trump’s supporters are legitimate. Politicians for too long have promised to represent the best interests of all Americans before an election, only to represent the interest of their cronies after the election. But Trump’s followers are being fooled into believing that he can help them.

Trump is promising many things that he cannot possibly deliver, but the most frightening part is Trump’s stated willingness to ignore the authority of the Supreme Court, Congress and the U.S. Constitution if he were to become president.

Trump has been surrounded by controversy for decades because of his untruthfulness, questionable business practices, reported association with organized crime, and abrupt changes in fundamental positions. Many of these controversies involve defrauding the working class and decisions that compromised American workers. He has taken a political position both pro and con on virtually every subject and major political party. This should give evangelicals great pause and concern about supporting such a mercurial and chameleon-like candidate. Past performance is the best predictor of future behavior.

Trump said he wants to make it easier to sue newspapers that criticize him. When it was pointed out to him Sunday that he would have to amend the Constitution’s freedom of speech and freedom of press clauses, Trump was unmoved, simply noting that England has weaker protections for the press.

Many evangelicals, including our friends, have criticized Trump on our own opinion page and elsewhere, such as Matt Barber, Dr. Michael Brown, Kristi Burton Brown, Susan Stamper Brown, Rev. Mark Creech, Wallace Henley, E.W. Jackson, Max Lucado, Dr. Russell Moore and Rep. Reid Ribble. If Trump were to become president we fear he would use the levers of government power to silence them and others.

We are already concerned about the expansion of executive power to dangerous and unconstitutional extremes in the current and previous administrations. Plus, in just the past year we have seen Christians put out of business and jailed for living according to the dictates of their faith.

Trump, an admirer of Vladimir Putin and other dictatorial leaders, may claim to be your friend and protector now, but as his history indicates, without your full support he will turn on you, and use whatever power is within his means to punish you.

This is a critical time in American history and we call on all Christians to pray for personal repentance, divine forgiveness and spiritual awakening for our nation. It is not the time for Donald Trump.
Read more at http://www.christianpost.com/news/donald-trump-scam-evangelical-voters-back-away-cp-editorial-158813/#AkZ9wVYjirWOMaIp.99

Read more at http://www.christianpost.com/news/donald-trump-scam-evangelical-voters-back-away-cp-editorial-158813/#VIRWTtDOzqdPMWzu.99

Decency for President – by Max Lucado


NOTE: This is an updated version of the blog originally posted 2/24/16. This expanded version was published 2/26/16 by the Washington Post.

As the father of three daughters, I reserved the right to interview their dates. Seemed only fair to me. After all, my wife and I’d spent 16 or 17 years feeding them, dressing them, funding braces, and driving them to volleyball tournaments and piano recitals. A five-minute face-to-face with the guy was a fair expectation. I was entrusting the love of my life to him. For the next few hours, she would be dependent upon his ability to drive a car, avoid the bad crowds, and stay sober. I wanted to know if he could do it. I wanted to know if he was decent.

This was my word: “decent.” Did he behave in a decent manner? Would he treat my daughter with kindness and respect? Could he be trusted to bring her home on time? In his language, actions, and decisions, would he be a decent guy?

Decency mattered to me as a dad.

Decency matters to you. We take note of the person who pays their debts. We appreciate the physician who takes time to listen. When the husband honors his wedding vows, when the teacher makes time for the struggling student, when the employee refuses to gossip about her co-worker, when the losing team congratulates the winning team, we can characterize their behavior with the word decent.

We appreciate decency. We applaud decency. We teach decency. We seek to develop decency. Decency matters, right?

Then why isn’t decency doing better in the presidential race?

The leading Republican candidate to be the next leader of the free world would not pass my decency interview. I’d send him away. I’d tell my daughter to stay home. I wouldn’t entrust her to his care.

I don’t know Mr. Trump. But I’ve been chagrined at his antics. He ridiculed a war hero. He made a mockery of a reporter’s menstrual cycle. He made fun of a disabled reporter. He referred to the former first lady, Barbara Bush as “mommy,” and belittled Jeb Bush for bringing her on the campaign trail. He routinely calls people “stupid,” and “dummy.”1 One writer catalogued sixty-four occasions that he called someone “loser.”2 These were not off-line, backstage, overheard, not-to-be-repeated comments. They were publicly and intentionally tweeted, recorded, and presented.

Such insensitivities wouldn’t be acceptable even for a middle school student body election. But for the Oval Office? And to do so while brandishing a Bible and boasting of his Christian faith?

I have no inside track on the intricacies of a presidential campaign. I’m a pastor. I don’t endorse candidates or place bumper stickers on my car. But I am protective of the Christian faith. If a public personality calls on Christ one day and calls someone a “bimbo” the next, is something not awry? And to do so, not once, but repeatedly? Unrepentantly? Unapologetically? Can we not expect a tone that would set a good example for our children? We stand against bullying in schools. Shouldn’t we do the same in presidential politics?

Could concerns not be raised about other Christian candidates? Absolutely. But the concern of this article is not policy, but tone and decorum. When it comes to language, Mr. Trump is in a league of his own. “It is out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks,” Jesus said.3 Let speech befit the call. We, as Christians, would do well to summon any Christian leader to a higher standard. This includes pastors (especially this one), teachers, coaches and, by all means, presidential candidates.

All of them.

The stock explanation for Mr. Trump’s success is this: he has tapped into the anger of the American people. As one man said, “We are voting with our middle finger.” Sounds more like a comment for a gang-fight than a presidential election. Anger-fueled reactions have caused trouble ever since Cain was angry at Abel.

We can only hope, and pray, for a return to verbal decency. Perhaps Mr. Trump will better manage his comments. (Worthy of a prayer, for sure.) Or, perhaps the American public will remember the key role of the president: to be the face of America. When he/she speaks, he/she speaks for us. Whether we agree or disagree with the policies of the president, do we not hope that they speak in a way that is consistent with the status of the office?

As far as I remember, I never turned away one of my daughter’s dates. They weren’t perfect, but they were decent fellows. That was all I could ask.

It seems that we should ask the same.

©Max Lucado
February 26, 2016

___________________________________

1http://presidential-candidates.insidegov.com/stories/5187/23-ridiculously-offensive-donald-trump-quotes
http://www.cnn.com/2015/08/08/politics/donald-trump-cnn-megyn-kelly-comment/index.html
http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2015/11/26/trump-blasted-mocking-disabled-reporter/76409418
http://www.businessinsider.com/donald-trump-jeb-barbara-bush-mommy-2016-2
https://www.bostonglobe.com/news/politics/2015/11/13/how-stupid-are-people-iowa-trump-asks-while-blasting
2http://www/macleans.ca/news/world/the-definitie-list-of-every=person-donald-trump-has-called-a-loser/
http://www.theverge.com/tldr/2015/8/4/9096781/donald-trump-dummy
3Luke 6:45

Worried Enough to Pray?


by Max Lucado
Last week’s blog struck a nerve. I wrote a piece entitled “Decency for President.” The premise was a simple one. Shouldn’t a presidential candidate who claims to be Christian talk like one? When a candidate waves a Bible in one speech and calls a reporter “bimbo” in the next, isn’t something awry? Specifically, when Donald Trump insists that he is a Christian (“a good Christian” to use his descriptor) and then blasts, belittles, and denigrates everyone from Barbara Bush to John McCain to Megyn Kelly, shouldn’t we speak up?

If the candidate is not a Christian, then I have no right to speak. But if the candidate does what Trump has done, wave a Bible and attempt to quote from it, then we, his fellow Christians need to call him to at least a modicum of Christian behavior, right?

Again, I struck a nerve. More than three million of you read the article in the first 36 hours! Thousands of you weighed in with your comments. They were fascinating to read. (Not all of them pleasant to read, mind you. The dozens of you who told me to stick to the pulpit and stop meddling in politics– I get it. By the way, I’d like to invite you to attend our services. My upcoming message is “Kindness”.) Detractors notwithstanding, your comments were heartfelt and passionate.

I detected a few themes.

You have a deep sense of love for our country. Patriotism oozed through your words. You cherish the uniqueness and wonder of the USA. You have varying opinions regarding leadership style, role of government, and political strategy. But when it comes to loving the country, you are unanimously off the charts.

You have an allergy to “convenient” Christians. You resist people who don the Christian title at convenient opportunities (i.e., presidential campaigns). You would prefer the candidate make no mention of faith rather than leave the appearance of a borrowed faith that will be returned to the lender after the election.

You are concerned, profoundly concerned, about the future of our country. The debt. Immorality. National security. The role of the Supreme Court. Immigration. Religious liberty. The list is as long as the worries are deep.

So where does this leave us? When a person treasures the country, but has trepidation about its future, what is the best course of action?

Elijah can weigh in on this question.

He lived during one of the darkest days in the history of Israel. The Northern Kingdom had 19 kings, each one of whom was evil. Hope had boarded the last train and optimism the final flight. The leaders were corrupt and the hearts of the people were cold. But comets are most visible against the black sky. And in the midst of the darkness, a fiery comet by the name of Elijah appeared.

The name Elijah means, “My God is Jehovah.” And he lived up to his name. He appeared in the throne room of evil King Ahab with a weather report. “‘As the LORD, the God of Israel, lives, whom I serve, there will be neither dew nor rain in the next few years except at my word’” (1 Kings 17:1).

Elijah’s attack was calibrated. Baal was the fertility god of the pagans, the god to whom they looked for rain and fertile fields. Elijah called for a showdown: the true God of Israel against the false god of the pagans. How could Elijah be so confident of the impending drought? Because he had prayed.

Eight centuries later the prayers of Elijah were used as a model.

“The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective. Elijah was a human being, even as we are. He prayed earnestly that it would not rain, and it did not rain on the land for three and a half years. Again he prayed, and the heavens gave rain, and the earth produced its crops” (James 5:16-18).

James was impressed that a prayer of such power came from a person so common. Elijah was “a human being” but his prayers were heard because he prayed earnestly. This was no casual prayer, comfortable prayer, but a radical prayer. “Do whatever it takes, Lord,” Elijah begged, “even if that means no water.”

What happened next is one of the greatest stories in the Bible. Elijah told the 450 prophets of Baal: You get a bull, I’ll get a bull. You build an altar, I’ll build an altar. You ask your god to send fire; I’ll ask my God to send fire. The God who answers by fire is the true God.

The prophets of Baal agreed and went first.

“At noon Elijah began to taunt them. ‘Shout louder!’ he said. ‘Surely he is a god! Perhaps he is deep in thought, or busy, or traveling. Maybe he is sleeping and must be awakened.’

“So they shouted louder and slashed themselves with swords and spears, as was their custom, until their blood flowed. Midday passed, and they continued their frantic prophesying until the time for the evening sacrifice. But there was no response, no one answered, no one paid attention” (1 Kings 18:27-29).

(Elijah would have flunked a course in diplomacy.) Though the prophets cut themselves and raved all afternoon, nothing happened. Finally Elijah asked for his turn.

“Then Elijah said to all the people, ‘Come here to me.’ They came to him, and he repaired the altar of the LORD, which had been torn down. Elijah took twelve stones, one for each of the tribes descended from Jacob, to whom the word of the LORD had come, saying, ‘Your name shall be Israel’” (1 Kings 18:30-31).

Elijah poured four jugs of water (remember, this was a time of drought) over the altar three times. Then Elijah prayed.

“LORD, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Israel, let it be known today that you are God in Israel and that I am your servant and have done all these things at your command.   Answer me, LORD, answer me, so these people will know that you, LORD, are God, and that you are turning their hearts back again” (1 Kings 18:36-37).

Note how quickly and dramatically God answered.

“Then the fire of the LORD fell and burned up the sacrifice, the wood, the stones and the soil, and also licked up the water in the trench. When all the people saw this, they fell prostrate and cried, ‘The LORD—he is God! The LORD—he is God!’” (1 Kings 18:38-39).

“Pow!” the altar was ablaze. God delighted in and answered Elijah’s prayer. God delights in and answers our prayers as well.

Let’s start a fire, shall we?

If your responses to my blog are any indication, you are anxious. You love this country, yet you are troubled about the future. You wonder what the future holds and what we can do. Elijah’s story provides the answer. We can pray. We can offer earnest, passionate prayers.

It’s time to turn our concerns into a unified prayer. Let’s join our hearts and invite God to do again what he did then; demonstrate His power. Super Tuesday, March 1, is the perfect day for us to step into the presence of God.

Dear Lord,

You outrank any leader. You hold sway over every office. Greater is the occupant of Heaven’s throne than the occupant of the White House.

You have been good to this country. You have blessed us in spite of our sin and guarded us in spite of our rebellion.

We unite our hearts in one prayer. Let your kingdom come. Let your will be done. Please, speak through the electoral process to reveal your leader.

This we pray in the name of Jesus,

Amen

© Max Lucado
February 29, 2016

Israeli Parliament member rips up New Testament


Joel C. Rosenberg

(Jerusalem, Israel, July 19, 2012) — Please pray for Michael Ben Ari. He’s a member of the Israeli parliament (Knesset) who this week was given the gift of a Hebrew New Testament study Bible by the Israeli Bible Society but chose to rip it to shreds and throw it into the garbage and do so in front of the press. It was a reprehensible act and a childish temper tantrum and the controversy over what he did and why he did it has made headlines here in Israel and around the world. The good news is several leading Israeli officials condemned Ben Ari’s action and called for him to apologize. Personally, I’d like to see Prime Minister Netanyahu make a strong statement condemning Ben Ari’s action, as well. I’m not aware that the PM has yet done so.

At the end of this column, I post some of my thoughts about why I believe this controversy is important.

But first, here are the latest details: “MK Michael Ben Ari (National Union), a member of the Israeli parliament tore up a copy of the New Testament and threw it in the trash, an act that was apparently caught on camera,” reported Ynet News. “Ben Ari and several other Knesset members received by mail on Monday a copy of the New Testament, sent by the Bible Society in Israel, an organization that distributes religious books. In the letter sent with the book, director of the Christian organization Victor Kalisher wrote that the new edition ‘sheds light on the Holy Scriptures and helps understand them….We hope the book will help you and illuminate your way.’….However, while most MK’s chose to ignore the book or return it to its sender, the rightist lawmaker chose to term the book a ‘provocation,’ tore it up into shreds and then threw it out. ‘This abominable book (the New Testament) galvanized the murder of millions of Jews during the Inquisition and during [other] instances,’ Ben Ari said adding that ‘Sending the book to MK’s is a provocation. There is no doubt that this book and all it represents belongs in the garbage can of history.’”

“The religious and ultra-Orthodox Knesset members should honor those who want to read the book, Kalisher said,” noted the Times of Israel, “adding ‘it could help them expand their own knowledge.’ Kalisher also denied the notion of missionary activity, saying his organization studied and spread the holy scriptures, providing people with knowledge and study tools. There was no intention to ‘hurt the feelings of Knesset members,’ he said. ‘It’s a Jewish book, written by Jews. To better understand Judaism you need to study the New Testament.’

MK Ben Ari’s deplorable behavior was denounced by other Knesset members, including the Speaker of the Knesset Reuven Rivlin. The Anti-Defamation League (ADL), to their credit, also called on MK Ben Ari to apologize for his behavior. I agree with the ADL and am encouraged by their statement, which I’ve posted on the blog.

That said, I would encourage all of the Members of the Israeli Knesset to ready and carefully study this Hebrew edition of the New Testament and to proactively study the life of Yeshua (Jesus) of Nazareth. Indeed, my prayer is that all Israelis would read and study the New Testament and decide this question: Is Yeshua the Jewish Messiah foretold by the Hebrew prophets, or not? This is the most important question in all of human history, and the most important and urgent of questions that must be answered by each and every Jew and Gentile. Indeed, our eternal destiny depends on how we answer this question and what actions we take based on our answer. Thus, I’m grateful this controversy has been sparked. May it lead many to decide to obtain a copy of this Hebrew New Testament and study carefully it for themselves.

[To read these stories in full — and/or to read excerpts from IMPLOSION, and/or to find links to the latest news and analysis of events and trends in the U.S., Israel, Russia, and the Middle East — please go to: http://flashtrafficblog.wordpress.com/.%5D

—————

ALSO ON THE BLOG:

* BUS BOMBING KILLS AT LEAST 7 ISRAELI YOUTH IN BULGARIA: Iran suspected

* MOFAZ QUITS ISRAELI GOVERNMENT: Why he did it, and what it means.

* SERMON IN HAIFA: “O GOD, IN LIGHT OF THE GROWING THREATS TO ISRAEL, OPEN OUR EYES” (2 Kings 6:8-23)

* INTERVIEW: IMPLOSION AUTHOR DISCUSSES “RAPTURE”

* IRAN LEADER: WE MUST PREP FOR THE “END TIMES”

* WILL AMERICA EXPERIENCE A THIRD GREAT AWAKENING? Listen to sermon online

* DOES BIBLE PROPHECY FORETELL THE DESTRUCTION OF DAMASCUS? (a look at Isaiah 17 and Jeremiah 49)

* TWITTER — I’ve become active on Twitter. Please join me @jcrflashtraffic.

A Biblical View Of The End Times


by Alan Carr

Sermon #1

1 Cor. 15:51-57

51 Listen, I tell you a mystery: We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed — 52 in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed. 53 For the perishable must clothe itself with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality. 54 When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true: “Death has been swallowed up in victory.”[a]

55 “Where, O death, is your victory?
    Where, O death, is your sting?”[b]

56 The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. 57 But thanks be to God!He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

 1 Thes. 4:13-17

13 Brothers, we do not want you to be ignorant about those who fall asleep, or to grieve like the rest of men, who have no hope. 14 We believe that Jesus died and rose again and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him. 15 According to the Lord’s own word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left till the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep. 16 For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever.

WHEN TRUMPETS FADE

Intro: These verses that we have read this morning give us a little insight into a future event known as “The Rapture”. While this word itself does not appear in the Bible, the event is real nonetheless. We get the word “Rapture” from the Latin translation of the Greek word arpazw (harpazo). It means just what the King James Bible says it does, “caught up“. The Rapture is that future event when the Lord Jesus Himself will return in the clouds above this earth and will catch away all the saved people of the world. It is a time that is known in the Bible as “The Blessed Hope Of The Believer“, Titus 2:13. This future event will be the focus of our preaching this morning.

While the return of our Lord is spoken of many times in the New Testament, there are only three passages which deal with the Rapture in any detail. I have read two of them this morning. The other is found in Revelation 4:1-2a, “After this I looked, and, behold, a door was opened in heaven: and the first voice which I heard was as it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said, Come up hither, and I will shew thee things which must be hereafter. And immediately I was in the spirit:…” I want to draw your attention to one common theme that punctuates each of these references. That common theme is the mention of the “trumpet”. We are told in clear language that the Rapture will be a time that will be heralded with the sound of trumpets.

When the writers of the New Testament used the imagery of trumpets, the people to whom they were writing were well acquainted with what they were saying. However, we modern readers need to be educated about the significance of the trumpet.

In the Bible, trumpets were used for four specific purposes.

1. To Proclaim Victory

2. To Call An Assembly

3. To Announce A Warning

4. To Call The Troops To Battle

It is clear to see how the trumpets fit with the idea of the Rapture. All four of these events will take place when the Rapture comes about.

1. Victory over the world will be announced by the church.

2. The saints will be called to assemble themselves in the presence of the Lord.

3. The trumpets will announce a warning of judgment to the world.

4. The angelic troops will be summoned to battle.

Also, in the society of that day, trumpets were heard on a daily basis. The Roman army, which occupied most of the civilized world at that time used trumpets to carry out the movement of their troops. Typically, when a Roman legion moved, there would be three blasts from the trumpets. The first would tell the troop to strike their tents and to prepare to move. The second would alert them to fall in and line up. The last trumpet would be the signal to move out. Notice what Paul says in 1 Cor. 15:52. He tells us that we are leaving at the “last trump”. When the trumpet sounds, it will be the signal to move up to glory!

Folks, when the trumpet sounds, all those who are saved by grace will be leaving this world. It is that event that I want to preach about today. I want you to know that before the sound of that trumpet blast fades from our ears, several great and precious events will take place. Allow me to share them with you this morning as we think on the thought, “When Trumpets Fade.”


I. OUR LORD WILL HAVE RETURNED1 Thes. 4:17

A. In Fulfillment Of His Promise – Before the Lord Jesus went to the cross, He promised His disciples that He would return for them one day, John 14:1-3. He later reaffirmed this promise to the Apostle John, Rev. 22:20. Just as sure as there is a blue sky above us He will return as He promised He would! Even as He was ascending back into Heaven, angelic messengers were dispatched to tell the Apostles of the Lord’s impending return, Acts 1:9-11, “And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight. And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel; Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.

B. In Fulfillment Of His Purpose – While the Lord was making His promise to return some day, He also stated His purpose, John 14:3. The Lord desires to receive His bride unto Himself, Eph. 5:25-27. After all, He paid the ultimate price to redeem her from her sins and to cleanse her from her filthiness! He died on the cross to purchase His Bride and He wants her to be with Him in His heavenly home.

II. ALL DEPARTED SAINTS WILL HAVE BEEN RESURRECTED 1 Thes. 4:13-16; 1 Cor. 15:52b

A. Their Present Condition – 1 Thes, 4:13 tells us that those saints who have departed are “asleep“. This does not refer to “soul sleep“. It refers to the fact that their bodies are asleep. When a saint of God leaves this world, they are immediately ushered into the presence of the Lord. This was the conviction Paul Held, 2 Cor. 5:8, “We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.“; Phil. 1:23, “For I am in a strait betwixt two, having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ; which is far better:” Presently, all those who left this world in a saved condition are in the presence of the Lord Jesus Christ.

(Ill. The question may arise as to what manner of body they possess. Certainly they do not have their glorified bodies yet. However, it would seem that they possess some sort of a spiritual body. When Moses and Elijah appeared with Christ on the Mount of Transfiguration, they possessed bodies that could be seen and recognized, Matt. 17:3. Whatever form they are in this morning, they are certainly in a place free from the cares, pains and burdens of this world. The Bible is clear when it teaches us that “nothing that defileth shall enter” Heaven, Rev. 21:27.)

B. Their Promised Completion1 Cor. 15:52b tells us that the departed saints will be raised “incorruptible“. That is, they will be changed! When they left their body, it was destined for the ground from which it came. However, when the Lord Jesus returns, He will bring their spirits back with Him, He will raise their bodies and glorify them. He will then place the spirits back into those newly glorified bodies!

(Ill. There will be more said about that future body in just a moment!)

(Ill. How will all this happen? Certainly, to our mortal minds it is a great mystery. However, if you take the time to look back at the times our Lord shouted while He was on this earth, you will discover that each time He did so, dead folks got out of their graves.

1. He shouted in Bethany and Lazarus lived! – John 11:43-44

2. He shouted at Calvary and some lived! – Matt. 27:50-52

3. He will shout from the clouds and all the departed saints will live – 1 Thes. 4:16.

There is power is the Word of our Lord!)

III. ALL LIVING SAINTS WILL HAVE BEEN RAPTURED – 1 Thes. 4:17; 1 Cor. 15:51-52a

A. The Church Will Leave Instantaneously – Notice the use of words that imply speed and swiftness, 1 Cor. 15:52, “moment” – This word speaks of an “indivisible point in time. A span of time so short that there is none shorter.“; “twinkling of an eye” – Scientists have determined that the blink of an eye is 1/30th of a second in duration. That is fast! However, a twinkling is event faster than that, somewhere in the neighborhood of 1000th of a second! Then in 1 Thes. 4:17, Paul uses the term “caught up“. This phrase means “to snatch away, to seize with force, to claim for oneself.” It refers to a sudden event when the saints of God will be “snatched from this world with force and claimed for the glory of God.“)

(Ill. The whole idea here is one of speed! There will be no forewarning. There will be no announcements on TV, on radio, or in the papers. There will be no announcements from the pulpits. God will not proclaim in a booming, Charlton Heston voice that the end is nearing. It will just happen! My friend, if you have ever listened to anything in your life, then listen to this. You need to be ready! Jesus Himself said, “Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.”, Matt. 24:44.

If He were to come today, would He find you ready? Oh friend, do not be deceived, it could happen! Today could be that glorious day when the Lord returns for His people. Will you be in that number that hears the shout, that hears the trumpets and that leaves this world in an instant? Only if you are born again! Be ready, He is coming!)

(Ill. Can you imagine the chaos that will ensue when this event takes place? All babies missing! Most children gone! Some husbands and wives missing. Many Cars, planes, trains, etc without drivers. Television personalities taken right off the air. It will be a time of great hysteria and mayhem. Some of you had better prepare for it, because you may experience it first hand! Why not come to Jesus before that happens?)

B. The Church Will Leave Intact – In 1 Cor. 15:51, Paul tells us that “all” will be changed. The Rapture will not be an event enjoyed by a select few. But, every born again believer will have a part in the Rapture of the church! The body of Christ will not be fragmented! Part will not be taken and part left behind to endure the Tribulation. When the Rapture comes ALL the saints will go together!

(Ill. Because of the lives they have lived, some will not deserve to go, but they will go nonetheless. All the redeemed of all the ages will leave this world as one when the trumpet sounds. There are no second class citizens in the Kingdom of God! Saved is saved and lost is lost! All the saved will go, all the lost will stay behind!)

IV. ALL SAINTS WILL HAVE BEEN RECONSTRUCTED – 1 Cor. 15:52b-57

A. Changed Physically – At the moment of the Rapture, all the saints will experience a radical change. These mortal bodies will be changed to immortal ones. The bodies that are destined to perish will be made like the body of our Lord. A body that cannot experience death, decay or disease. A body that will shine with the brilliance of 10,000 suns. What a day that will be!

B. Changed Perfectly – When this change comes, it will remake us into the image of our glorified Lord. 1 John 3:2, “Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.” We do not know a lot about our Lord’s glorified body, but we do know:

1. It is a body not bound by time or spaceJohn 20:19.

2. It is a body that can enjoy food and fellowshipLuke 24:36-43.

3. It is a body that can never dieHeb. 7:25.

4. It is a body that shines with a heavenly brillianceRev. 21:23; Matt. 17:2

All of this is enough to let me know that I want one of these bodies some day. All the saints will wear a glorified body when we arrive in that Heavenly home!)

C. Changed Permanently – The language of our texts tells us that we will no longer be mortal. These new bodies will never wear down or wear out, but they will last throughout eternity. They will be a perfect in 10,000,000 years as they were the day we received them! Notice what Paul says about this body in 2 Cor. 5:1, “For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens.

V. ALL SAINTS WILL BE ENJOYING A REUNION – 1 Thes. 4:17

A. With Our Loved Ones – Notice the phrase “together with them in the clouds“. This indicates that all the children of God will be together forever in Heaven. Imagine being reunited with spouses, parents, children and grandparents. Imagine seeing your departed loved ones in their new glorified bodies in the presence of the Lord Jesus! What a glorious privilege has been given to all the saints of God!

B. With Our Lord – As great as that reunion with our loved ones will be, it will be eclipsed by another reunion. This same verse tells us that “so shall we ever be with the Lord.” My friends, one day, we will see Him Who died for us on the cross! We will look at His face. We will be able to bow before Him in adoration and worship. We will be in the presence of the Lord Jesus Christ! I can imagine no thrill any greater in this universe than to see the One Who loved me enough to lay down His life in payment for my own. Hallelujah! Just the thought of that is enough to make a Baptist shout! Glory! Glory!

Conc: Well, I’ve done a lot of preaching this morning and I have tried to describe several events that will happen when the Lord returns for His church. But please remember, all this will take place before the sound of the trumpet fades away. Are you ready for that event? Have you been washed in the blood of the Lamb? If Jesus came back for His church today, and He could, would you go, or would you be left behind? What I am asking is this: Have you ever come to the place where you knew you were lost? Have you confessed your sins to God? Have you placed your faith in the death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ? Have you received Christ as your personal Savior? Are you saved? If you are, then you have a reason to rejoice this morning! There are exciting things ahead for the children of God! If you are not saved, I beg you to come to Jesus right now! This is the only time you have to be saved! If the Lord is tugging at your heart and is calling you to come to Him, then please come! Don’t delay another minute. It is too dangerous! Jesus may come at any time and you really need to be ready when He does. Will you come to Him right now while there is still time? Will you be saved so that you too can be ready for that meeting in the air? Jesus is coming! Don’t be caught unprepared!