In Part 1, I left by giving you a parallel of the second coming of Jesus Christ with Matthew 24:30 and Revelation 19:11-21. If you notice in Revelation 19, there is no mention of angels being sent to rapture the saints to meet the Lord in the air. It says that when Jesus comes down, the saints (the army of heaven) will be with Him. Let us put Matthew 24:31 and Revelation 20:4 together without verses and read it as a whole.
“He will send out his angels with a loud trumpet, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of the sky to the other. Then I saw thrones, and people seated on them who were given authority to judge. I also saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of their testimony about Jesus and because of the word of God, who had not worshiped the beast or his image, and who had not accepted the mark on their foreheads or their hands. They came to life and reigned with Christ for a thousand years.”
Look how well those two verses fit together which makes it clear who the elects are. The saints that are gathered in Matthew 24:31, are the saints who got saved during the Great Tribulation. They are gathered so that they may also rule with Christ. We see this in 1 Corinthians 6:2 which says, “2 Or don’t you know that the saints will judge the world? And if the world is judged by you, are you unworthy to judge the trivial cases?”
I see three groups of Christians ruling with Christ Jesus at His second coming.
The first group is the one who comes with Jesus (the army of heaven Revelation 19:7-8, 14; 1 Thessalonians 3:13).
The second group, are those who got their heads cut-off for Jesus and the Word of God. They died because they chose not to receive the mark of the beast (Revelation 20:4), for they rather die than betray their Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
The third group, are those who the angels of the Lord, will gather to present them to the returning King of kings and Lord of lords to serve Him, who is eternal, in the millennial kingdom. The Scripture doesn’t say if their bodies will be changed into a spiritual body like the rest of the believers that come down with Jesus.
We also see this in Daniel Chapter 7, where the saints will rule with Jesus Christ at His second coming. See below.
[Daniel 7:18] 18 “But the holy ones of the Most High will receive the kingdom and possess it forever, yes, forever and ever.’
[Daniel 7:27] 27 “The kingdom, dominion, and greatness of the kingdoms under all of heaven will be given to the people, the holy ones of the Most High. His kingdom will be an everlasting kingdom, and all rulers will serve and obey him.’
We also see a foreshadowing of the rapture in Genesis Chapter 19. The LORD sent two angels to rescue Lot and his family before the wrath of God was poured out on the two cities, especially, the one they were living in. The angels told Lot that they couldn’t destroy the city until they were at a safe distance. See below.
[Genesis 19:22-25] 22 “Hurry up! Run to it, for I cannot do anything until you get there.” Therefore the name of the city is Zoar. 23 The sun had risen over the land when Lot reached Zoar. 24 Then out of the sky the LORD rained on Sodom and Gomorrah burning sulfur from the LORD. 25 He demolished these cities, the entire plain, all the inhabitants of the cities, and whatever grew on the ground.
Even Abraham knew that it wasn’t right for a righteous God to destroy the righteous with the wicked. This is their discourse.
[Genesis 18:23-25] 23 Abraham stepped forward and said, “Will you really sweep away the righteous with the wicked? 24 “What if there are fifty righteous people in the city? Will you really sweep it away instead of sparing the place for the sake of the fifty righteous people who are in it? 25 “You could not possibly do such a thing: to kill the righteous with the wicked, treating the righteous and the wicked alike. You could not possibly do that! Won’t the Judge of the whole earth do what is just?”
[Genesis 18:32-33] 32 Then he said, “Let my lord not be angry, and I will speak one more time. Suppose ten are found there? ” He answered, “I will not destroy it on account of ten.” 33 When the LORD had finished speaking with Abraham, he departed, and Abraham returned to his place.
We see that the Lord God, Jesus Christ, will not punish the Christians with the wicked in the Great Tribulation. But, He will rescue them before it starts.
I hope that in Part 1 and 2 of these posts, made it clear that those who have put their trust in Jesus Christ and in what He did for them on the cross may be encouraged with hope that they will be rescued to be with Jesus forever and ever. Maranatha, come Lord Jesus.