At the battle of Inkerman in 1854 a soldier was just able to crawl to his tent after he was struck down. When found, he was lying upon his face, his open Bible before him, his hand glued fast to John 11 by his life-blood which covered it. When his hand was lifted, the letters of the printed page were clearly traced upon it, and with the ever-living promise in and on his hand, they laid him in a soldier’s grave. The words were: “I am the resurrection and the life; he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live.”
A number of years ago, retired NASA engineer Edgar C. Whisenant wrote a book called 88 Reasons Why the Rapture Will Be in 1988. The book, which he self-published, placed the expected date of the Rapture between September 11 and September 13 of 1988, and became a massive bestseller. By the time the end of the year was reached, more than 4.5 million copies had been sold. Whisenant was certain he had the date right. He said, “Only if the Bible is in error am I wrong; and I say that to every preacher in town. I would stake my life on Rosh Hashanah 1988.”
“I compare the troubles which we have to undergo in the course of the year to a great bundle of sticks, far too large for us to lift. But God does not require us to carry the whole at once. He mercifully unties the bundle, and gives us first one stick, which we are to carry today,and then another, which we are to carry tomorrow, and so on.
In October, 1864, just before General Sherman commenced his famous march to the sea, while his army lay camped in the neighborhood of Atlanta, the army of Hood, in a carefully prepared movement, passed the right flank of Sherman’s army, and gaining his rear, commenced the destruction of the railroad leading north, burning block-houses and capturing the small garrisons along the line.
A gentleman visiting a certain school gave out that he would give a prize to the pupil whose desk he found in the best order when he returned. “But when will you return?” some of them asked.
“That I cannot tell,” was the answer. A little girl, who had been noted for her disorderly habits, announced that she meant to win the prize. “You!” her schoolmates jeered; “why, your desk is always out of order.”
“Oh! but I mean to clean it the first of every week.”
“But suppose he should come at the end of the week?” someone asked.
A mother was explaining, to her little girl, the death of her father. The mother said: “God has sent for your father and will send for us, but I do not know just when.” Finally, the little girl said: “If we do not know just when God is going to send for us, do you not think we had better pack up and get ready to go? God might send when we are not ready.”
Source: The Expositor and Current Anecdotes, Volume 8, F. M. Barton Publisher
Submitted by the homiletics class of West Coast Baptist College
After church, where she had been taught about the rapture, a little girl was quizzing her mother. “Mommy, do you believe Jesus will come back?”
“Could He come today?”
“In a few minutes?”
“Mommy, would you comb my hair?”
The doctrine of the immanency of the rapture should motivate us to be ready for it.
The great preacher F.B. Meyer once asked D.L. Moody, “What is the secret of your success?” Moody replied, “For many years I have never given an address without the consciousness that the Lord may come before I have finished.”
Source: Life Changing Thoughts, Gary Smith
Winston Churchill planned his funeral before he died. His wishes called for a bugler, positioned high in the dome of Saint Paul’s to play the taps after the benediction. The taps were meant to represent that his physical life was over. But then came the most dramatic turn: as soon as the taps was finished, another bugler, placed on the other side of the great dome, played the notes of reveille—It’s time to get up. It’s time to get up. It’s time to get up in the morning. At the end of history, the last note will not be taps; it will be reveille.
A young man, who was to return home and be married, came sooner than was expected. He did not notify his bride-to-be of the exact time. He desired to please her with a surprise. He loved her devotedly and had worked hard and saved his earnings in order to purchase a home for her. It was about midnight when he arrived, but, with a happy heart, he felt he must go by her home. However, when he came near he saw the house was all lighted up. As he came nearer he heard music. Still nearer he saw dancing.
The black horse spoken of in Revelation 6:5-6 forebodes death, and the pair of balances bespeaks a careful rationing of food. Normally, a “penny” (a Roman denarius, a day’s wages in Palestine in Jesus’ day, Mt. 20:2) would buy eight measures of wheat or twenty-four of barley. Under these famine conditions the same wage will buy only one measure of wheat or three of barley.
Source: Wilmington's Guide to the Bible, quoting Charles Ryrie
At the height of World War II Dietrich Bonhoeffer was imprisoned for taking a stand against Hitler. Yet he continued to urge fellow believers to resist Nazi tyranny. A group of Christians, believing that Hitler was the Antichrist, asked Bonhoeffer, “Why do you expose yourself to all this danger? Jesus will return any day, and all your work and suffering will be for nothing.” Bonhoeffer replied, “If Jesus returns tomorrow, then tomorrow I’ll rest from my labor. But today I have work to do. I must continue the struggle until it’s finished.”
On May, 19th, 1780, in Hartford, Connecticut. The sky went from blue to gray at noon. Shortly thereafter the sky was so dark that men believed the end of the universe had come and fell to their knees begging for a final blessing. The House of Representatives was meeting, and many representatives asked for the meeting to be adjourned immediately. The Speaker of the House, Colonel Davenport, rose to his feet and silenced the men with these words, “The Day of Judgment is either approaching or it is not. If it is not, there is no cause for adjournment.
We are to work while we wait for the rapture. A gardener for a large estate in northern Italy was conducting a visitor through the castle and the beautiful, well-groomed grounds. As the visitor had lunch with the gardener and his wife, he commended them for the beautiful way they were keeping the gardens. He asked, “By the way, when was the last time the owner was here?
“About ten years ago.” The gardener replied.
The visitor asked, “Then why do you keep the gardens in such an immaculate, lovely manner?”